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Who voted negative on my node ?

by Corion (Pope)
on Jun 03, 2000 at 04:51 UTC ( #16159=monkdiscuss: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

Today, I found one of my nodes on the list of the Worst Nodes for this day. Shocked by the ignorance of the unknown voter, I requested a reason via the chatterbox, why my technically correct node had been deemed worthy as a bad node. It was no brilliant node, I was willing to concede, but the judgement seemed harsh in my eyes.

In the ensuing discussion in the chatterbox, I had to clarify my statements and to reformulate the point I wanted to bring across, as the fellow monks could not see my wit and cunningness with which I had pointed out a flaw in another node.

In the meantime, a kind soul had voted my node back to "Reputation : 0", but in retrospect, I guess it was more motivated by my ranting than by the quality of my node.

During the discussion I transferred the example which I had given to the chatterfolk in a corrected version to the node. More explaining text was added. A third vote came in, resulting in "Reputation : +1". This shocked me. That node was bad. It had been so bad, that one individual had sacrificed a vote for a "Reputation : -1". It was so bad, that I had to admit myself that it had, despite its shortness, some unclear points. And now, somebody thought that this node was not that bad after all.

What had changed ?

A practicing pedant pointed out to me, that people do not like pedantic quips but like explanations and maybe some examples. And indeed, during the node rework, the text had changed from a two-line remark to an explanation and example of the problem and the solution. While first I was only trying to be accurate, I had missed the fact that the perceived fault was not even clear to my fellow monks. But now, it seemed that carity had found this node.

What did I learn today ?

First, I thought people should be required to give a reason for a negative vote. I was even almost prepared to call for a crusade on this matter. Then I realized that my view of the subject matter had not been clear to everyone and that an example can also help other people with understanding a problem. But the real revelation I did have was that, had the voter not voted, I would not have gone back and a bad node would have lived on.

I don't know if this is a final truth, but it was a story I wanted to tell :)

I did not find any better place to post this, but wanted to share my experience - so please excuse if this was far too wrong here ;)

Note to "--" voters : Although it surely made me rethink my node, I would have it appreciated much more, if there had been a comment added like "Don't be such a smart-ass, be nice" or "Please state your problem with the above node more clearly ! Nobody understands what you are bitchin' about."

Another discussion of this topic took place at this node.

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
RE: Who voted negative on my node ?
by turnstep (Parson) on Jun 04, 2000 at 18:12 UTC

    > Note to "--" voters : Although it surely made me rethink my node,
    > I would have it appreciated much more, if there had been a
    > comment added like "Don't be such a smart-ass, be nice" or
    > "Please state your problem with the above node more clearly !
    > Nobody understands what you are bitchin' about."

    I tend to give more positive than negative votes, but I usually let my negative vote speak for itself. Giving a reason every time would just add to the clutter, and not help the overall value of the site at all. Most times, if a question is not clear or needs more information, I will msg the person or reply with a "please clarify" post. Very basic posts that show no effort on the part of the poster to solve it themselves (i.e. perldoc perlfunc) fall into this category. I am more than willing to help people out with problems that may seem simple to me, but I feel that perlmonks should not be a replacement for the perl faq or the Learning Perl book.

    This is not meant as a dig on your post - by the very fact that you posted this here, and took some time and thought in doing so, indicates that you are not the type of person who I would vote down without an explanation. I save that for the Anonymous Monks that say: "What does the $_ mean that I keep seeing everywhere?" :)

RE: Who voted negative on my node ?
by KM (Priest) on Jun 04, 2000 at 03:38 UTC
    I agree with t0mas and his remark he refers to. Maybe there shouldn't be -- votes. Either you get a ++, or none at all. Then, if you don't like what someone posts, you need to comment on why to show your dissaproval.

    At first, I wanted to respond to this and tell you to toughen up and stop your whinning, but, I know that that would likely get voted down. So, having negative votes can help cut down on the noise in postings. If I was to -- a post, and reply 'I think your code sucks, so I voted it down', well I would suspect that node would in turn be voted down.. so why would someone want to post that? And, why would someone want to read it? Then you would get into 'If you think it sucks, then tell me why', etc... That means noise, IMO.


RE: Who voted negative on my node ?
by t0mas (Priest) on Jun 03, 2000 at 21:27 UTC
    I made a remark about negative voting in a discussion about experience a while ago. What I wanted say then, and still do, is that it is better to tell someone what you don't like, rather than vote "--" on the poor fellow.
    So just wanted to tell you that I share your view on this subject.

    /brother t0mas
RE: Who voted negative on my node ?
by royalanjr (Chaplain) on Jun 05, 2000 at 17:54 UTC

    A negative vote is not the end of the world. And I agree with the others that posts explaining what is wrong with the post that was voted down would simply be more clutter.
    If you have a post with a negavite point or two, or even a few of those, that does not mean anything personal against you. Take it in context of what other posts you have done. Typically, if you have posted something materially incorrect, not factual, or not in best use, you will be gently corrected by one of the many folks here that know perl better than I know english *smile*
    But I would lose no sleep over a post with a couple negative votes. The time to worry would be when most of your posts are dipping down there.
    Roy Alan
    "I quit; I concede. Tanj on your silly game!" -- Louis Wu

      Well, that negative vote didn't make me lose sleep - only for the first five minutes I wouldn't have slept well :) That event just made me think a bit more critical about voting in general...

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