April 01
On Thursday, 1 April 2021 at 00:55:14 UTC, 12345swordy wrote:
> On Wednesday, 31 March 2021 at 21:26:48 UTC, Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
>> I wonder how difficult it would be to add a voting system for forum messages. Votes wouldn't be available in the NNTP interface but would be accessible in the Web interface and would allow sorting and filtering by votes.
>>
>> cc Vladimir :o)
>
> Here is an better idea: Why not allow us to edit our post to correct typos?
>
> -Alex

The Non-editable feature is one of the best of this forum.

I hope they keep that way. When you are able to edit, people say things reckless and times later they change their mind and edit, causing confusion most of time, and this happens a lot on reddit for example.

We already have this great power to think before posting.

Clint E.
April 01
Dunno, this attention economy all too easily devolves into dark patterns. Talking about youtube, an addiction-inducing recommendation feed improved engagement metric too. On top of that nobody figured out what the voted are or do, the feature is just there and everybody ends up using it unconsciously, which can't possibly go right.
April 01
On Thursday, 1 April 2021 at 02:11:17 UTC, Walter Bright wrote:
> On 3/31/2021 2:40 PM, Adam D. Ruppe wrote:
>> I'm sure this wouldn't be terribly difficult to implement, but I also don't think it is a good idea. Online voting is emotionally toxic and logically fallacious. We're better off without it.
>
> Votes on Reddit and Hackernews are heavily biased towards first posts. Posts the next day might as well have never happened.
>
> Another thing is on HN, downvoting based on politics rather than quality is proscribed but happens relentlessly anyway.
>
> I prefer the egalitarian approach of all voices here are equal. The only moderation we do is deleting posts that don't belong here, like spam.

I like the following vote logic:

- topics sort by vote count mixed with newness
- top-level replies sort by new (recency)
- mid-level replies sort by vote.

This is what Reddit does when you set a thread to "New by default."

The downside of a purely recency based sorting is that it favors verbosity and controversy rather than consensus - threads stay on the frontpage by being *debated*, rather than by being agreed or disagreed on, resulting in posts where everyone agrees and nobody has anything to add quickly falling off the forum.

I agree with all the downsides of votes you highlight, but as long as new toplevel replies can become visible, I think ratings are useful to keep valuable topics alive and promote interesting replies.
April 01
On Wednesday, 31 March 2021 at 22:06:38 UTC, tsbockman wrote:
> On Wednesday, 31 March 2021 at 21:40:15 UTC, Adam D. Ruppe wrote:
>> On Wednesday, 31 March 2021 at 21:26:48 UTC, Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
>>> I wonder how difficult it would be to add a voting system for forum messages. Votes wouldn't be available in the NNTP interface but would be accessible in the Web interface and would allow sorting and filtering by votes.
>>
>> I'm sure this wouldn't be terribly difficult to implement, but I also don't think it is a good idea. Online voting is emotionally toxic and logically fallacious. We're better off without it.
>
> I agree
>
> Filtering or sorting by votes usually creates echo chambers. It is a pretty effective way to kill any possibility of fruitful debate: anyone who doesn't *sound* right to the majority of voters at the beginning quickly becomes invisible, largely eliminating the possibility of ever changing the majority's mind about anything.
>
I don't think that Andrei wanted this implemented in a way in which
downvoted comments become invisible, but rather the option of
upvoting and downvoting a comment so that people who are interested
in the most popular/unpopular opinions would have a way to search for
this. Ideally, by default, the forum stays the same, however, if you
want to search for the most upvoted comments (which would most likely
represent the main points of the discussion) you should have a way
to do that.

There are numerous posts with 200+ replies that are concentrated
around 3-4 key comments. It is really hard to identify them with
the current interface, you really have to go through all of the
posts (some of them quite large). A voting system would basically
select the most important comments that are debated.

> Even without filtering and sorting, voting turns discussion into a popularity contest, attracts politicians, and creates new ones. In general, it's only really good for things that aren't controversial.
>

I think that this thread represents the best argument why a voting system
is needed. You just posted a comment and the next 3-4 comments were basically
"+1". If we had a voting system, your comment would have been voted
and the verbosity of this thread would have diminished.

> All that said, many websites make it worse than it needs to be with bad systems. (Bad for users, that is - maybe not bad for ruthlessly manipulating public opinion.) Up votes and down votes should always be tracked and displayed separately. Combined net counts are stupid and misleading: 0 upvotes and 100 downvotes means something very different from 10_000 upvotes and 10_100 downvotes.

What I get from this is that voting can be also good or bad depending on how
we use it. IMHO having an upvote/downvote scheme could be beneficial in
some situations if it is implemented properly.

Cheers,
RazvanN


April 01
On 2021-04-01 05:32, Clint E. wrote:

> The Non-editable feature is one of the best of this forum.
> 
> I hope they keep that way. When you are able to edit, people say things reckless and times later they change their mind and edit, causing confusion most of time, and this happens a lot on reddit for example.
> 
> We already have this great power to think before posting.

When I use a platform that does support editing, most of my changes are correcting spell errors. Or when I've forgot to finish a sentence before starting a new one.

I think GitHub hits a sweet spot. They allow editing comments but retain the full history which everyone can see.

-- 
/Jacob Carlborg
April 01
On 2021-03-31 23:26, Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
> I wonder how difficult it would be to add a voting system for forum messages. Votes wouldn't be available in the NNTP interface but would be accessible in the Web interface and would allow sorting and filtering by votes.

GitHub has a new feature (still in beta), Discussions, which is kind of like a forum. I don't have much experience with it but it looks like it supports some form of voting. It also supports two form of discussions: open ended and questions. A question discussion can be marked as answered, which is pretty nice.


-- 
/Jacob Carlborg
April 01
On Wednesday, 31 March 2021 at 21:26:48 UTC, Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
> I wonder how difficult it would be to add a voting system for forum messages. Votes wouldn't be available in the NNTP interface but would be accessible in the Web interface and would allow sorting and filtering by votes.
>
> cc Vladimir :o)

This idea did come up before, and is controversial as others have pointed out. My personal thoughts about this today are:

- Downvotes are not nice to receive and in general carry bad vibes.

- Sorting or filtering by votes creates unhealthy incentives - there is now a system which would be advantageous to "game".

- Having a way to publicly communicate agreement or appreciation with a post without all the bulky noise associated with a reply might be nice. Good vibes only!

- The only way I can think of to translate the votes to the NNTP/email medium is either converting them to messages which have nothing but a +1 (which is very spammy), or not doing it at all. Neither is ideal.

- Different people engage with the community with different attitudes and expectations. I'm not sure how much sense it would make to flatten this to a single number.

- In any case, at the moment we seem to be doing okay, at least as far as people intentionally participating in unconstructive ways.

April 01
On 2021-04-01 10:40, Vladimir Panteleev wrote:

> This idea did come up before, and is controversial as others have pointed out.

Someway to indicate a question is answered or a topic is resolved would be nice to have as well. It wouldn't be spammy for NNTP users since it would only be one message per thread.

-- 
/Jacob Carlborg
April 01
On Wednesday, 31 March 2021 at 21:40:15 UTC, Adam D. Ruppe wrote:
>
> I'm sure this wouldn't be terribly difficult to implement, but I also don't think it is a good idea. Online voting is emotionally toxic and logically fallacious. We're better off without it.

+1
I think most posters here, even the slightly abrasive ones (and this is becoming rare), implement a sort of self-moderation, based upon what is valued on these forums.
April 01
On 01.04.21 10:05, RazvanN wrote:
> ...
> I think that this thread represents the best argument why a voting system
> is needed. You just posted a comment and the next 3-4 comments were basically "+1".

Most of them with additional text.

If we had a voting system, your comment would have been voted

The post that got so much support _literally_ said that a voting system would be a bad idea, and why.

> and the verbosity of this thread would have diminished.
> ...

If that's a problem for web interface users, improve the web interface.

>> All that said, many websites make it worse than it needs to be with bad systems. (Bad for users, that is - maybe not bad for ruthlessly manipulating public opinion.) Up votes and down votes should always be tracked and displayed separately. Combined net counts are stupid and misleading: 0 upvotes and 100 downvotes means something very different from 10_000 upvotes and 10_100 downvotes.
> 
> What I get from this is that voting can be also good or bad depending on how
> we use it. IMHO having an upvote/downvote scheme could be beneficial in
> some situations if it is implemented properly.
> ...

Downvotes are worse than useless. Just upvote the rebuttal instead; at least it will be clear what you voted for. E.g., if I just downvoted your post, that would not have helped you understand why.
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