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(kudra) Re: Why - - A Node?

by kudra (Vicar)
on May 15, 2002 at 09:17 UTC ( #166675=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Why - - A Node?

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.

...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 the lesser).

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.

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: (kudra) Re: Why - - A Node?
by educated_foo (Vicar) on May 15, 2002 at 14:12 UTC
    It seems to me that if you disagree, you should reply, not downvote. By replying, you say "I believe there is another way to look at things, and here it is," giving others the opportunity to consider your opinion. By downvoting, you effectively say "because I disagree with you, neither myself nor anyone else should even hear your ideas." And while I sympathize with your "negative presidential vote" idea, I think maybe "none of the above" would be a better solution; if you want to support one candidate over another, you should actually dirty yourself by voting for that candidate, rather than against the other. Plus, we already have Ralph Nader ;).

    About "rehashes": Seems to me it takes relatively little time to either (a) point someone to some of the relevant nodes, or (b) point them to super-search, since you've probably already done the relevant search and/or participated in the relevant discussions to even know that the post is a rehash. Imagine if your high school teachers had, when you asked a question to which the answer was already known, told you to stop talking. What would you have learned from this? Maybe the poster will follow the links you give, read the other material, and come back with a more informed opinion. Or maybe the poster has already read and digested the relevant material, and doesn't feel the need to cite it.

    I find it disturbing to see the root post sitting at -8 now. Are there really 9 people (I gave it a ++) who think that this person's voice shouldn't even be heard, or that there is nothing new to say on the subject of downvoting? I think by even replying you have answered "no".


      This discussion is entirely opinion, and i for one will not tell anyone how to spend their votes. I did not even want to touch this thread with a 10 foot pole until i saw this:

      By downvoting, you effectively say "because I disagree with you, neither myself nor anyone else should even hear your ideas ... this person's voice shouldn't even be heard ..."

      I strongly disagree with that argument. Replace downvoting with reaping and i will agree. Downvoting existed at this site long before reaping, which came about from trolling. Downvoting is peer review. Think of it as a pain receptor, like when you touch a hot surface. A significant number of negative votes (more than 2) means that the author _probably_ said something wrong. Downvoting is a simple feedback mechanism - replying would be better, but not everyone is confrontational. If someone feels that they have been wrongly downvoted, they can always raise the issue in the Chatterbox.

      Replying instead of downvoting is not always an option. Some monks are too busy at the moment. Some monks might have already told the author in question in a past post why they were wrong, see the author do it again, sigh out loud and --. Some monks will send the author a private /msg after downvoting. Some monks feel that the author should know better, and no explaination for the downvote is necessary. Whatever the reason, it is their choice, and i respect them for exercising their choice, even if i don't agree. It is our right.


      off the soapbox and back to learning Perl

      UPDATE: reply to your reply

      Sorry, but no, we don't agree. If you want to view it that way, then by all means do so. But i don't, because i do not believe that all nodes with a negative rep should be reaped. What would be the point of Worst Nodes then?

      Also, what i agreed to was that reaping a node is silencing that person's voice, not downvoting is just a means to have a node reaped. Big difference. (and there are two categories: downvoting and reaping ;))

      But i think that we can agree that Perl is the main reason we are here, so let's just agree to disagree on our interpretation of downvoting/reaping. Sorry to step up on my soapbox. ;)

        I strongly disagree with that argument. Replace downvoting with reaping and i will agree. Downvoting existed at this site long before reaping, which came about from trolling.
        Then I think we agree. I view downvoting purely as suggesting that a node be reaped, and believe that it is useful for this. Pushing a node's score negative has been the way to make it reapable for my entire short perlmonks lifetime, and this is why I do it. While downvoting is also a way to keep the node's author at a low rank ("bad peer review"), I don't particularly care about doing this, since I don't typically look at an author's home-node when reading posts. If I needed to establish some degree of trust in a post, I will read the author's other posts and their replies. That, or look for a spiffy, multi-colored .sig... So if there were two different categories of "--", "bad" and "shouldn't exist", we wouldn't have to use the same term to mean different things.

        Anyways, sorry to drag you onto the soapbox.