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That downvote button


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  • Sustaining Member

It's not in my nature to make requests regarding this forum, given that it's been provided for decades as a free service by Tim, and I hate to put work his way.

Even so, I can't help but wonder whether the downvote (and by association, upvote) buttons are useful. We increasingly live in a world where people are invited to register an opinion about things without being required, or even asked, to justify that opinion. As a result, a downvote creates all the negative consequences of disagreement without any chance of anyone learning anything, without creating what may be informative discussion around a point of contention. It is antithetical to the purpose of a forum.

Happily I've managed to largely avoid the phenomenon, and it's rare here anyway given that we're largely a technical discussion group, but for the record, I have absolutely no problem with people disagreeing with me if that disagreement is well articulated. On the contrary, I relish any opportunity to improve my understanding of a situation and to better understand other people's points of view, especially if they're points of view with which I disagree.

I don't have a problem with people downvoting me, either, since I'm simply likely to ignore it pro tem unless and until some sort of explanation is provided. It's just not very useful.

Can we remove these upvote-downvote buttons?

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Maybe we should vote on it 🙂

I agree mostly. The DownVote Button's value lies only in its ability to vaguely communicate the view of those who may be apprehensive or too shy to use words.

 

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  • Sustaining Member
Posted (edited)

There's another value. A very small number of members post wrong information, probably not out of mal-intent, but because they don't know better, on certain technical aspects. Some knowledgeable  members here usually correct this misinformation quickly, but this requires someone to read the whole thread. If I see a post that states, I should use coconut butter to lubricate my 4-perf movement and it has  three downvotes, my guess is, this might not be the best idea - everyone knows you should use whale fat 🙂

Edited by David Sekanina
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11 hours ago, Phil Rhodes said:

I don't have a problem with people downvoting me.....

Hey Phil, I gave you a red arrow just so you could experience the feeling, and to test your declaration. No offence brother..

I think getting a downvote feels pretty horrid. Reasonable people don't tend to do it. They will disagree and even violently argue if the ideas are worthy and they have some acuity of mind and social skills.

Unfortunately, there is at least one (maybe just one) member on the forum who repeatedly misrepresents technical facts, misrepresents himself, misleads others, is given to grandiose delusions and occasional perversity. Many tried engaging in reasonable argument with him without any useful result and most have given up. In that case a red arrow might be a legitimate sign of what's disagreeable. 

Showing the names might help, but it might be more useful to force people to write a few words qualifying the vote (arrow). Same for the green arrow and the lovey icon.

Since this is suggestion time on forum functionality...I believe that sustaining members should have a very limited window for editing their posts. Editing should not be a means to manipulate the opinions of others or to remove embarrassing errors or deficiencies in our knowledge. 

 

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  • Sustaining Member

I think helping us to communicate more clearly with each other should always be the goal. Upvotes and hearts are generally pretty self-explanatory. So maybe we can leave those as-is.

The problem with downvotes is that their meaning is not always apparent - it could mean that someone disagrees with your opinion, that they dislike your tone, or perhaps that they were simply feeling a bit gassy that day.

I still scratch my head at some of the downvotes I’ve gotten, since it often seems to be from an anonymous person not actually participating in the thread. In this case it’s not all that constructive, as I have no idea what someone is objecting to.

While there are some reasonable use cases for downvotes when the context is obvious, as Gregg has pointed out, I think it’s not an ideal system. My suggestion would be to either:

1. Make downvotes non-anonymous, and give the down-voter a small selection of qualifying statements on what they are objecting to.

2. Change the up/downvote system to a larger selection of emojis which would at least give more context.

Personally, I like to use memes for extreme cases when there simply are no words. But that’s a lot of work, and Tim would probably prefer us not to use up his bandwidth that way...

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  • Sustaining Member
On 5/15/2021 at 11:49 AM, Max Field said:

That fact it is anonymous just enables cowardice spite, if you can't put a name next to the downvote then yeah get rid of it is my vote.

Exactly the problem with it. The only way it works is if people's names are registered/logged.

Personally, I wouldn't have any up or down vote. This is the only site I've ever been on with it. If people agree with something, they can reply with "yes I agree" which is how forums have been done for decades prior. 

I also think for the record that there are a lot of spiteful people on here, who go to peoples profiles check what they've posted and down vote no matter what they post. This behavior is incredibly childish and it happens to not just myself, but others as well. A great example of it can be seen on this very post. Just wait 10 minutes, it will happen. 

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  • Sustaining Member
16 minutes ago, Satsuki Murashige said:

The problem with downvotes is that their meaning is not always apparent - it could mean that someone disagrees with your opinion, that they dislike your tone, or perhaps that they were simply feeling a bit gassy that day.

Agreed, you really don't know why they're downvoting. 

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  • Sustaining Member
22 hours ago, Gregg MacPherson said:

Unfortunately, there is at least one (maybe just one) member on the forum who repeatedly misrepresents technical facts, misrepresents himself, misleads others, is given to grandiose delusions and occasional perversity. Many tried engaging in reasonable argument with him without any useful result and most have given up. In that case a red arrow might be a legitimate sign of what's disagreeable. 

Nice passive aggressive attempt to explain your consistent down arrows. A perfect example to the admins on why they shouldn't exist. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Tyler Purcell said:

Nice passive aggressive attempt to explain your consistent down arrows. A perfect example to the admins on why they shouldn't exist. 

I'm proudly claiming responsibility for one of the red arrows to Tyler's post above.  At the risk of quoting myself...this, the red arrow, "might be a legitimate sign of what's (really f...ing) disagreeable". 

Edit: spelling

Edited by Gregg MacPherson
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  • Sustaining Member
1 hour ago, Tim Tyler said:

I've removed the DownVote option and enabled some new positive and neutral reaction options.

Perhaps one day I'll be in a position to buy Tim a beer! It's been awhile. Firefly, in Vegas, a very long time ago?

Edit - good grief, it was 2006.

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