I'd rather see votes used more sparingly in general.
To me it's just as 'bad' to upvote a mediocre node
as to downvote it (meaning I wouldn't do either but
I see no reason why other people shouldn't if they are
so inclined). I prefer to save my votes for nodes that
provoke strong reactions, either good or bad.
in reply to Why - - A Node?
...which is why I downvoted the root node in this
thread. I strongly disagree with it; I think both
negative and positive reactions are important. In
fact, I see the negative vote as so useful I wish
political systems would adopt it as a means to combat
voter apathy that naturally occurs when faced with
only bad choices (somehow, the thought of downvoting
the greater of two evils seems more pleasant than upvoting
My voting generally follows the suggestions laid
out by voting guidelines, although I
naturally have my own opinions. For example, I'm
inclined to downvote discussions which rehash
old issues without making references to the earlier
instances (although I'm more forgiving now because
of the supersearch modifications).
Update It's my opinion that the
person posting has a duty to read previous posts
related to the topic. In some cases, people who have
been pointed to past discussions have ended up revising
their opinions. I also see it as the poster's duty to
refer to the past discussions, for those who might
not have seen them. Failing to do so is laziness or
negligence in my opinion, and so I vote accordingly.
I do have a small complaint about the voting system,
however, when it is used for other purposes. For
example, a node which should be deleted because it
is a duplicate needs a negative reputation (unless this
has changed) to be removed. The primary goal here is
deletion--downvoting is just a means to an end, not
any kind of a response to the content (although for
some it may be a response to the fact that it was
duplicated, I suspect this is not true for everyone).
Another example is discussion/meditation posts. Sometimes I
read posts that make me consider something I hadn't
considered before, or that I feel are well-presented,
yet I still disagree with the basic point. An upvote
would suggest that I feel the idea should be implemented,
whereas a downvote implies that the post was poorly
written or the question should not have been raised.