Having surfed reddit for several years, I've always had the impression that its voting system cannot handle controversial topics well. Although it's an official rule that comments shouldn't be downvoted in disagreement, downvotes are very often used that way. This sometimes leads to less "valuable" content being on top of threads, for example jokes.
I think that it's beneficial for discussions to have good controversial opinions in higher positions as they are now on reddit. But I understand that people want to state their disagreement and don't always want to comment to do so. Also, I think many disliked that the public upvote/downvote counters were removed.
Something that could help with all of that would be a disagree button for each comment together with a counter that shows how many people clicked that button. The button wouldn't have any effect on sort sequence.
What do you all think of this?
Edit: Added clarification that there wouldn't be an effect on sort sequence.
I think if people feel so strongly that they disagree then they should comment and describe why. If it's not that strong, then it doesn't really matter. Of course people disagree, disagreement is the most common thing ever.
I think not having a downvote (aka disagree) really helps calm me down when I don't like something here. If I read something that I don't like, I instinctually want to downvote it but then realize that I can't and would have to comment, and the thought of being rude to someone because they hold a difference idea/stance than I do chills me out.
There's also an issue where I don't necessarily want to bump a thread I disagree with, but the current activity sort means drawing more attention to it. It'd be nice to have a "sage" or "don't bump" option so that we're not necroing old or low-quality threads just to agree, disagree, correct spelling mistakes, clarify an insignificant point, etc.
The problem with text is that it needs a lot of time to read, and there will be way too much to read. Also, it's more difficult to estimate the amount of opposing comments rather than a ballpark number.
Part of purpose of ~ is to be an environment that fosters discussion. Implementing a shortcut that doesn't contribute anything to a discussion offers nothing of value.
Many of you assume that people won't write if they can click a disagree button. I disagree with that :)
But I can't explain why I disagree. Wouldn't it be good to have a disagreement button here? Sometimes, I can't put something into words although I feel strongly about it.
I really don't see the value. If you don't agree with something, but can't articulate why, that seems to me like a prime opportunity for a conversation. One could attempt to work out what they feel, and why, and gain a deeper understanding of themselves as well as the issue subject to that disagreement.
The value is to let people participate who are too lazy/have to little time to write and would otherwise not be represented. And most people are too lazy. A big majority also doesn't participate in political discussions, yet they are allowed to vote to express their opinions. Although I have to admit I argument against myself because you can only vote for, not against someone. But I don't see how a simple counter would be bad.
Oh, also it would bring an overview effect. You could spot controversial posts very quickly
I'm sorry, but I really don't see what benefit enabling laziness in a discussion-oriented space offers. If one cares to be represented they are more than free to comment. Voting a post isn't supposed to be an 'agree' button either, which I feel your advocacy for a 'disagree' button implies. Per the docs:
and downvotes don't exist because:
Implying that people read the docs. This here is not Arch Linux, it's a simple website with a low entry barrier ;-)
I agree that all this works when there aren't many users, but we'll see whether it will stay that way.
Isn't that good though? How many people disagree with a comment tells us very little, the important point would be to know what arguments those who disagree have.
Imagine that you made this post, and instead of people leaving these comments telling you why they disagree with the idea, you just got a DISAGREE x6 displayed on it. How would that have felt, regardless of whether it affects the rank or not?
Honestly, not significantly worse than now. Everything is subjective and disagreeing with words in the end has the same effect as with numbers, because I apparently couldn't convince anyone ;-)
But you got a chance to discuss it and talk to others about it, which is sorta the point of ~ over reddit. If there were a downvote system and if this were reddit you would have likely had one reply, at the most, outlining why they disagree and a lot of downvotes. Instead you have several replies where you were able to have a discussion about the issue that you brought up. Whether or not you were able to convince any one or anyone convince you doesn't really matter, what matters is there was an opportunity for that to happen, an opportunity which does not exist in a system that emphasizes numbers of up/downvotes.
My experience on Reddit is that I get a lot of downvotes and then a few comments that have the content of a 15-year-old on 4chan. Very rarely do I recieve well thought out or additive comments on a comment I've made with a lot of downvotes. I simply get more downvotes and stupid, low-effort replies.
So here's my two issues with what you said. First, that presupposes that no one will leave a comment if they disagree as long as they have a button. I don't think that's true just because that's the way Reddit works. There you know you're effecting the popularity and visibility of the content. Knowing it has no effect here takes a lot of that thinking away.
Second, I think there's a hidden issue here that isn't being discussed. If you'll look at the comments section of Engadget on politicized topics, you'll see an interesting phenomenon. AstroTurf accounts parrot their favorite party line, and have sockpuppet accounts vote it up for visibility. There is a thumbs-down button there but it doesn't even have a counter. So you have trashy propaganda that gets voted up, a large portion of the community calling it out, but it still seems like nothing can be done and high quality users leave.
Having a disagree button can let the community say, "We don't like this, and we'll tell you why, but you can't just come in here and incept us with a bot army."
I'm not sure why you give such a confrontational reply; and why the exaggerated assumption the threshold for commenting would rise dramatically?
Although I'm not quite clear what for a disagree button needs to be discussed either. If tildes still plans to add comment tags, one of the negative ones will definitely be used to portray disagreement.
People wouldn't use it honestly. They would downvote instead of disagree, because that means it has less visibility.
There is no downvote button here though. That's the big advantage. The disagreement button would have no effect other than relativating the amount of (up)votes
Then I agree with @tape that people should just express their disagreement in a reply, so people can explain why they disagree. It encourages discussion.
I agree with you about the downvote button. Reddit may have its comment etiquette that says the downvote button should only be used on nonconstructive posts, but when you give everyone a button that makes it less likely for someone to see something, it's only a matter of time before they start using it to silence opinions they don't like. Although I think it's important to discussion to be able to voice your concerns with someone else's opinion, I think disagreement isn't really something quantifiable. Not everyone who clicks that button will have the same reason for clicking it, and it would lead to a lot of people clicking it instead of responding with why they disagree, which would reduce the amount of actual discussion, and would make it difficult for the commenter to know why people disagree with them. I also think having a visible way to disagree with someone's opinion, along with a counter, will lead to people starting brigade mobs to give people large disagreement numbers without actually having a discussion. IMO if you disagree with someone but aren't prepared to explain why, you should just not vote for their post.
Definitely, that's what I meant when I wrote that opposing opinions are downvoted although they shouldn't be.
I agree with all that you said, but please consider that the number doesn't actually have an effect. It'd be like a poll for each comment. Probably, the button would be ignored for most comments, but for very controversial threads it would be helpful as a comparison to the amount of upvotes that the top comment got.
Why shouldn't you explain an upvote but a downvote?
Voting for something on Tildes is generally supposed to mean "this is quality content", and I don't think a disagree button would function well as a comparison because it isn't the opposite of a vote button; the vote button isn't an agree button, and IMO it should be used on everything that is well written/researched, not just things you agree with. I also don't think you should need to explain to someone why their comment was well written, although if you want to, you can always do that by replying. I agree with you that it would be useful as a poll-type thing to see how many people disagree with something, but without an agree button counterpart it wouldn't make much sense, and I feel like some people would use it as an alternative to replying.
I agree if the vote button is used for quality content. And it seems like the between-the-line-disagreement here is that I expect ~ to become mainstream eventually and that way gaining users who use the site differently as it was intended.
Sadly, that's what happened with Reddit, too.
I don't see much reason for one. If you disagree either ignore the topic or defend yourself. People here were complaining about the lack of discussion on some of the ~news submission. Having a simple "disagree" button will only make that worse.
Maybe there's not so much discussion because with the amount comments the threshold to get into to discussion is also increasing, granted you would have to read all comments which might be similar to each other. If there was an overview of which opinions are very controversial, those posts could get more attention and provoke discussion.
Currently ~ is setup to promote discussion and interaction. Post with the most activity will draw the most traffic because they will be higher up on the front page with the current sorting mechanic.
The current way to disagree with someone in ~ is to not comment and to note vote. Let the submission go fallow. Disengage and no one will see it.
I find this a little problematic because if there is a long article that I am interested in, it often gets ignored because the barrier to entry to discuss the article is too high (post that take an hour to read, etc).
Not sure if I got you. Do you agree that there's a need for a disagree button?
I'm more stating how it works in the current system. Highlighting the fact that if you comment on a post you are only promoting it. If you want to disagree then you would ignore it. That seems to go against the ideology of ~
I am on the fence in regards to a disagree button.
So you are against the ideology of ~ and also against a disagree button? Sorry, I must be misunderstanding you somehow... If you ignore something it's not good, or is it? Then why does it go against ~'s ideology?
To state clearly, currently I am on the fence if Tildes should have a disagree button. I like the basic ideology of Tildes which is to promote discussion.
With that said, with the current functionality of Tildes if I truly disagree with a post or topic, I should ignore it. I should not comment, I should not vote for it. This will starve the post of attention and it will be ignored.
Take a look at this post, it has not gotten may votes, but it has gotten a lot of discussion. So in that regard it is successful.
Now take a look at this submission, It has gotten more Votes but because of the density of the information in the article no one has commented and the submission died.
I hope I am making sense
I see, so you think that a disagreement and even a downvote is not needed for submissions. I agree with that, but I think your examples don't have an implication on a disagreement button for comments that doesn't rank the comment lower.
To your original point, I am on the fence about a disagreement button for comments only.
While there are certainly times and places that I would have liked a disagreement button. That seems to go against Tildes basic premise, which is to promote discussion. If I cannot be bothered to comment then why should I have a say in the conversation. I should either properly express my opposition or move a long.
Another angle to examine is that the disagreement button can be gamed just as easily as the downvote button on reddit. While you say that it will not effect a post I believe it would be quick and thoughtless way to devalue a comment that I do not agree with. And that could lead to a dogpile effect, which again does not promote conversation
But as Tildes grows large we may need a quick way to self moderate comments
Related, I think, would be something I was just thinking about. Would it be helpful to "rank" topics not on the raw number of votes, but on the ratio of votes (or views or comments) to people who read the topic? A topic with 10 votes read by 100 people would rank higher than a topic with 10 votes read by 1000 people. This would in some ways convey both the level of "agreement" and "disagreement" with value of a topic (whether that value is based on agreement with the topic, perceived legitimacy of it, or interest level in it).
I like this idea. I think there needs to be some way of identifying low quality content but agree the downvote mechanism isn't necessarily the best way to do it because that button is easy to use to mean other things. If the 'dis/agreement' score is based on user behaviour rather than an action users can explicitly take, it might work better. There might be other metrics which can be factored in to get an 'agreement' rank - such as time spent on page, repeat views by the same users, quantity of votes on comments and so on.
What does that add? I know people disagree. There isn’t a single thing on the planet that everyone can agree on. Nothing I comment here will be met with 100% agreement. That’s a fact, so telling me people disagree does nothing. Also, what does it matter if someone disagrees? It doesn’t. Absolutely nothing is gained from a disagreement tag and seeing that X amount of people disagree, especially when you know people are going to disagree with you because opinions aren’t fact and everyone has a different set of beliefs.
Having people disagree with you doesn’t mean anything. It’s just the way the world works. What matters is the discussion. This site isn’t here to give people who are too lazy to comment the ability to voice their disagreement. That’s the exact opposite kind of person that belongs here. If you can’t articulate and type out why you disagree, chances are you’re disagreeing for the wrong reasons. We’re here for discussion, anyway. I don’t care if 600 people disagree with me - that’s their opinion and I still have mine. It only matters when they can tell me why and begin a legitimate discussion on the subject.
If you’re too lazy to comment with why you disagree, then your disagreement is not important. It’s as simple as that. Not everyone needs a voice at all times. The lack of a downvote or disagree button on this site is a good thing. If you can’t at least see how important legitimate discussion is, you’re probably not a good fit.
Not a good fit to what? Humanity? Nice to read this.
Of course I see how legitimate discussion is, I just think it has additional value to see the number of disagreements, as well as other tags/emotions, without forcing users to post a text post about it. I see that on the current version of the site it's unnecessary, maybe I am thinking too much about reddit in its current form or a huge social network in general.
Uh, for Tildes, dude. You don’t have to invent things I didn’t say just to argue against me. It was extremely obvious what I meant.
Ok, what about every comment in this thread? You want someone to post this for every comment?
I'd be in favor of dumping votes and having scores/visibility based on tag combinations.
Maybe replace "Vote" with multiple reactions: Disagree, Agree, Interesting, LOL, etc
And then let users decide how to sort... ;)
Yeah, I should have mentioned that it would be only one choice next to the other tags that were originally intended for Tildes.
I understand the feeling. My solution is to implement asap a label for users in my browser extension.
I think that the act of writing on the side of a users "u know nothing" knowing it's something that I'll be the only one to see, is enough to help me.
Especially because, Jokes aside, if I add label smartly, I'll know with which user I should expect an easy agreement or an harsh discussion and decide if I feel like it or not.