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Who's voting and why?

by Zo (Scribe)
on Nov 20, 2000 at 21:43 UTC ( #42533=monkdiscuss: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

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(Ovid) Re: Who's voting and why?
by Ovid (Cardinal) on Nov 20, 2000 at 22:23 UTC
    I'd be happy to discuss my voting habits, particularly in regard to a recent post you made and my reply to it.

    Some people do not like merlyn. Some people do. But when I see someone come here and refer to him as "Randal L. Schwartzy", I am offended regardless of my feelings re: merlyn. Right off the bat, that tells me the conversation that follows is going to be juvenile. In reading the rest of your post, that opinion was born out. That's why I downvoted you.

    It's the same as someone who refers to Bill and Hillary Clinton as "Billary" or George W. Bush as "dumbyah." In casual conversation amongst friends, it gets laughed off. When your target audience is unknown, it's foolish. Starting out with insults is a sure way to offend your audience and make them tune out the rest of your comments, regardless of their merit. If you have something worthwhile to say, say it. Leave the insults for /.

    And if you're going to be insulting, can't you come up with something a little more intelligent than "Randal L. Schwartzy"?


    Join the Perlmonks Setiathome Group or just click on the the link and check out our stats.

Re: Who's voting and why?
by merlyn (Sage) on Nov 20, 2000 at 21:46 UTC
    One hint (I've found out the hard way {grin}):
    Whining about negative XP is likely to get you more negative XP on your next post.
    Whether you agree with that or not, it's a demonstrated phenomenon. {grin}

    -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker

Re: Who's voting and why?
by Malkavian (Friar) on Nov 20, 2000 at 22:15 UTC
    Updated: Maybe more relevant now. Posted previously with too much on the brain and came out wrong. Re-writing to be fair.:)
    People here seem to vote in two classifications that I've seen. These are:
    Technical Merit: In this classification, the ideals of a meritocracy hold true. A technical question is asked, and the reputation goes to those that show a flair for eloquence of coding, and obtaining the correct answer in the most efficient means.
    Being as this is a very highly skilled group of individuals, then, in this forum, the -- and ++ can fly. Especially when slipups are made, and wrong answers given.
    Philosophical: This is the one in which subjective opinion comes into play. There is a lot of personal bias at times, and sometimes, the --'s are given out on purely personal 'gut feelin', in much the same way that ++s are.
    However, a lot of what I've noticed is that often --'s are given for bad argument stance. A higly polished argument, even if it's subjectively disagreed with often reaches a high ++ on the technical merits of it's proposing of an alternative stance.
    This holds strongly to the tenets of debating, which, I was happy to find, are very alive and well here. :)

    However, the anonymous voting is a good thing, as far as I can see. There are a large group of voters on hand, enough that the personal bias of one or two people simply get lost as 'line noise' in the general vote. A good post will still achieve a high reputation as the unbiased vote pushes it towards a realistic measure of it's worth.
    Often, the -- of an article is a harrowing thing to receive. I believe I've had a fair few myself.. And honestly, I'd prefer not to know who did it.
    The not knowing can often prevent such things as returning ++ for people who often rate up your articles, due to a feeling that you may owe a little, or --ing because someone has done that to you, colouring your view of the article in question, possibly then detracting from a clean rating.
    Also, I don't believe a 1..10 scale is necessary.
    The reason for this is that each of the monks has a limited amount of votes for the day. Thus, I try and take care to place those where they do the most good. I rarely --, unless something seriously crosses my ethics, or is a blatantly stupid technical post.
    Most of the time it's better to leave a bad post to rot at rep. 0.
    As the old saying goes, if there's one thing worse than being talked about, it's not being talked about.
    Thus, a zero rep is about as shunned as you can get. :)
    This limit of votes makes certain that someone has to have a high preference for that article in order to vote at all on it.
    A 1 means that you got lucky.
    A 10 is worthwhile.
    A 20+ is very very interesting.
    It achieves the same end with much greater simplicity.
    A problem with a variable moderation is that for things to be fair, more 'votes' would have to be given. Otherwise, would you ever vote a '5' (average) with your vote? Most people would only vote on the lows (1 or 2 out of 10) or highs (9 or 10 out of 10), roughly approximating the ++ or -- already there.

    As for my voting habits... Sometimes, I see code I recognise as being well thought out and having take a lot of time and effort to bring to us as a whole.. I'll ++ for the effort of someone doing that, even if it's not the best code in the world. I'll also ++ someone for going out of their way to be helpful, even if the enlightenment provided is only small, but in the right direction.
    On the non-technical vote, it's either because I read something that makes me think long and hard about a viewpoint I've held for a long time (that gets ++ even if I still don't agree, usually), or if I see something I consider a well presented argument that says something I wish I'd written.. :)
    I often have a few votes left at the end of the day, mainly because I don't have time to vote them all.. :)

(kudra: There's a whole world out there) Re: Who's voting and why?
by kudra (Vicar) on Nov 20, 2000 at 22:39 UTC
    FYI, not everyone on this site is American, or living in the USA. So some of us find US-centricity either rude or short-sighted.

    I find it two different things when Vroom puts up a US-related poll (which usually has an option akin to 'Enough of this US stuff') and when someone throws in statements about how wonderful the US is which are totally unrelated to the topic at hand.

    As far as this post (thread root) is concerned, I feel that any mention of a topic which has been discussed many, many times is incomplete without links to some of the other times it has come up.

    - kudra, voicing her opinion, but not from within US territory.

      Seconded. And especially those who talk about the (American) laws like they apply to everyone here... there's been a couple of threads recently where I've restrained myself from annoying the participants with comments like "not round here, it ain't".

      I didn't believe in evil until I dated it.

        You should never feel the need to restrain yourself from pointing out the laws differ. Those points, made in a nice manner, could possibly be quite educational for some.

        Roy Alan

Re: Who's voting and why?
by extremely (Priest) on Nov 21, 2000 at 07:24 UTC
    I'll avoid theories to why/what others do and just state that I tend to ++ responses that are on topic and helpful or that bring to light a new issue that is of obvious importance to the questioner. I tend to ++ root posts only when they spawn a serious discourse or are FAQ worthy in their general application.

    If I have a few votes left over or am just in a light mood I'll ++ someone for simply being funny, or for pulling out a cool trick in Obfustications/Meditations/Snippets.

    I don't think I've given out more than 8 or 9 -- votes all told. They have to be rude or seriously dain-bramaged to earn one from me. I have occasionally tried to ++ people I felt were unworthy of being on the worst nodes list. Most recently that was Sort this data which was -3 when I decided to ++ it and respond.

    Now, breaking my own rule, I think that recently some people have been going a little hog wild with the -- votes. In the case of the one above, I think it may have been in resonance to the title, Sort this data which had to remind people of the notorious debug the error!! and find th bug!! =)

    Like any place on the web or in the world there are some caustic personalities here (um merlyn and princepawn come to mind, no offense to either but they both have a talent for setting other people off their kilter) and some seriously wacky people as well (list deleted when it passed 100 items =) but all in all it is still working rather well.

    $you = new YOU;
    honk() if $you->love(perl)

Re: Who's voting and why?
by little (Curate) on Nov 20, 2000 at 22:01 UTC
    Interesting enough that there was a while ago on the everything developer site a discussion if ++ and -- should be displayed separately for each node one wrote (just on his home node) and not only the total so you get a better imagination if you where totally (taken) wrong of if it's a topic that moves minds :-)
    But on the other hand I wount tell you why I voted in which way. If I'd say that you would ask "why do you think so" and this I'm not going to tell either. So I remain silent about that and stay happy :-)
    And if you want to discuss you have the chance to improve and we all gain enlightment or you end up like bravismore, he he. That's what the nodes are for.

    Have a nice day
    All decision is left to your taste
Re: Who's voting and why?
by lemming (Priest) on Nov 20, 2000 at 22:03 UTC
    Since you wanted comments...
    I've been trying to vote all my allocated votes and I find plenty of items to vote ++ on. If I vote --, it's going to be on something I strongly disagree with or is rude. Bad code falls into one of those categories.
    You already can say why you vote the way you do. Either via the chatterbox or by comments.
Re: Who's voting and why?
by jynx (Priest) on Nov 21, 2000 at 02:54 UTC

    This is probably a dead thread already (considering the speed that the posts came in the thread), but no one seemed to explicitly state some things that seem obvious.

    It would seem that ideally the `++' and `--' voting for the PM nodes is so well thought out and implemented that it needs little improvement (if any). Like i said, ideally:

    Ideally people vote `++' for nodes that they think should show up more often. The higher the score, the higher the rating (people seem to like genetics). When this is working properly there is little reason to ever `--' a post. A disregarded post (0 rep) will likely make the author re-evaluate their posting methodologies. The post could be extraneous (like this one probably) or poorly worded. Who knows. People just passed it over.

    On the other hand, giving a post enough `--'s so that it's on the bad nodes list forewarns others (who check the worst nodes page) what not to do in a post. This saves would-be bad posters from doing something stupid; in theory.

    Like stated, this is an ideal. What seems a good post to some might seem bad to others. Usually i vote `++' on a post that either:
    1) taught me something
    2) made me think
    3) made me laugh
    These are things that i would like to see more of on PM. They are completely subjective criterion however.

    This is way past long-winded already, but as to anonymous voting and 1..10, a little more.

    Anonymous voting seems to be a Good Thing (tm) since it usually disallows groups of voters to form. If you trust someone's opinion and they voted `--' on a post, would you read the post first or just follow suit? With many votes to spend and many posts to go through, this could happen. There are a hundred examples and counter-examples, but it seems that not having name recognition for a vote allows a freer voting system.

    The 1..10 idea was already hit up. Laziness abounds in programmers and 1,2,9,10 would probably end up being the most common votes from not wanting to invent a scale of where a particular post would end up in relation to other posts.

    These are just my thoughts, for the little they're worth. 2 cents anyone?


    ps(off topic) thank god for previewing posts, i tend to make an inordinately large amount of typographical errors when writing a post (originally)...

Re: Who's voting and why?
by Zo (Scribe) on Nov 20, 2000 at 22:40 UTC
    ... .. It's so nice to get lunch and come back and see all the replys, comments, etc.. and everything I've been saying is all in the spirit of conversation, I've made remarks to hear both positive and negative, b/c one still can learn from the negative as well as the positive. also.. there was a typeo in my ref. to Randy's name.. it seriously was a typeo (now for me replying will seem to be an excuse to try to be a good guy for what was typed.. a no win situation for me).. but as I have stated in the past.. I like to hear comments, etc. and would NEVER try to insult anyone in that way. .. If you haven't all noticed, I might say some things that does go against the flow of rational thought. I am a true supporter of all rules,etc. of society and other structured ways (was military for 8 years).. but on the other hand, one must question the answers and bring about the reasons of 'why'... and yes I have gotten myself into a bit of trouble, but I have learned from it all, and those who dare not speak out have too learned from my voice and have been thankful for me taking the abuse for what I have stated. I do enjoy this site in both a professional (for coding) and social way. :o) brother Zo.
      Calling me "Randy" is not very respectful either. You do need to hang out a bit more here before taking liberties, don't you? {sigh}

      -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker

        I continue to find it curious that somehow, for some people communicating digitally means throwing common courtesy out the window.

        One can still be a disargreeable, old fart, curmudgeon without losing ones manners.

        My approach to the 'Randy' thing is this; I have known merlyn (not in the biblical sense) through his books, articles comments etc. since 1991. Never once have I read that he goes by, accepts or embraces the name 'Randy'. So I would never think to refer him as Randy? Why? Respect. No, though I do respect him. No, It's plan old common courtesy, being polite, good manners.

        Maybe someday over beers merlyn will slap me on the back and say 'Say, why don't you just call me Randy' and I'll say 'No, I think Randal suits you better.'

        BTW, mitd's first name is Peter and NO ONE has ever been given permission to call mitd 'Pete'.

        mitd-Made in the Dark
        'My favourite colour appears to be grey.'

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