This was inspired by this post. I was thinking, as a platform gets bigger we're going to end up with more situations where people are asking for advice about fairly serious stuff. In some cases,...
This was inspired by this post.
I was thinking, as a platform gets bigger we're going to end up with more situations where people are asking for advice about fairly serious stuff. In some cases, that advice needs to come from experts and taking guidance from any random Joe on the street can be risky/dangerous. (For the record, I don't think the post I'm referencing is an example of this, it just got me thinking about it).
In cases like this, I think it's important that the actual good advice get some kind of clear designation that THIS is the guidance you need to take first. I notice this in communities like /r/Fitness a lot where people will post about what sound like pretty serious health concerns and you get a fair number of posts that suggest toughing it out or whatever and the more critical "You need to see a doctor" posts can kind of disappear amid the discussion. Similar things in /r/relationships where you can't always count on "This is abuse. Make arrangements to get your kids and yourself somewhere safe. . ." to be the top post.
Even in cases where the poster themselves is smart enough to take "YOU NEED TO SEE A DOCTOR" type advice to heart, not every schmuck searching the topic on Google will. To that end, it might be good to give certain posts with good, holistic advice or by a known expert some kind of visual indicator that it deserves to be taken more seriously than other posts in the thread. It wouldn't be censoring anything really, just providing a little nudge about what ought to be consulted first or taken to heart.
Now obviously it gets hard to decide how to give a post this attribute. It could possibly be awarded by the OP, though that has some obvious issues where the OP themselves might not be in a position to credibly vet the advice they're getting. We could also just do it through ranking by vote, which is the default paradigm. But like I said, it doesn't always work so well on Reddit. And the Exemplary tag is invisible to others, so that doesn't work either (and the post itself might not be worth giving up your "Exemplary" for the day besides). Moderators could do it, but there may not be enough and the skillset to be a Mod might not overlap with the skillset to know what advice a person needs in a particular situation.
I don't actually have the answers. Maybe it just comes down to creating an attribute for some users to be "wisened elders" or something and empower them to star certain posts to separate good advice from bad. It would basically be a trusted user system. It's got it's own problems, but I guess we can open the floor for other ideas. Maybe it's not a real concern. Maybe it's better addressed by tinkering with the sorting of posts.