Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 10th Jan 2012 23:53 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes The last few weeks there's been a considerable amount of chatter on the web about whether or not a news website, blog, or some hybrid thereof, needs comments. Since we are working on the next version of OSNews, which means I've been thinking about things like this a lot, I figured I'd pen down my thoughts on comments.
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RE: Comment by Anonymous Penguin
by sorpigal on Wed 11th Jan 2012 12:59 UTC in reply to "Comment by Anonymous Penguin"
sorpigal
Member since:
2005-11-02

Minus votes aren't fair in many cases, they just mean: I don't like/I don't agree, not "you are breaking a rule"


This is a real problem. Perhaps a solution would be to require every down-vote to come with a reply. So, upvote all you like, but make it "Downvote and reply" - in which you must make some justification for your choice.

Or, perhaps, it could be done stackoverflow-style where you need e.g. 3 votes of "Troll" before the post is slapped with any negative score, at which point it drops 3 points immediately. That way one guy saying "Troll" and one saying "Inaccurate" and one saying "Off topic" don't have any effect; a consensus must be reached, first.

As an administrator of a forum with 800,000 users, I believe I should know what I am talking about. We have only allowed "like it".


I passionately hate this misfeature. It misrepresents reality, badly. Some things are bad and it should be possible to identify them as such. Allowing only positive moderation only works in a utopian world, which we don't have. Requiring it in this world is the same as lying to yourself. I distrust any forum where you're only permitted to express positive opinions.

Edited 2012-01-11 13:02 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 6

Anonymous Penguin Member since:
2005-07-06


I passionately hate this misfeature. It misrepresents reality, badly. Some things are bad and it should be possible to identify them as such. Allowing only positive moderation only works in a utopian world, which we don't have. Requiring it in this world is the same as lying to yourself. I distrust any forum where you're only permitted to express positive opinions.


It seems to work fine with us ;) User should only be able to say "I like it". Staff should get rid of crap.
During the years I have got rid of idiotic, arrogant members of staff.
IMO, that is the root of all evil (in a forum). OTOH I run the forum with an iron fist in a velvet glove, and that works very well, believe me ;)

Edited 2012-01-11 13:17 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

I believe that it works. I also believe that it doesn't scale, is discourteous and encourages passive, eloi behavior. I won't tell you to stop, but I'll say it's bad and shouldn't be done here.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

There are several comments here that I would have liked to show my agreement with, but the restrictions are preventing that, I find the current voting system meaningless because of that.


Perhaps a compromise would be to make upvoting unrestricted and just limit downvoting?

An alternative solution that others have suggested is to split "moderation" and "voting" into two separate functions. The moderation would only have downvoting and it would be a privilege that could be revoked if it was used abusively.

Reply Parent Score: 3

drstorm Member since:
2009-04-24

Sorry for not being able to up-vote you, because I already posted.

That's the one annoying thing about OS News commenting system. I guess it is alright for this limit to exist within the thread I posted in, but not in all the others.

Reply Parent Score: 3

lfeagan Member since:
2006-04-01

Sorry for not being able to up-vote you, because I already posted.

That's the one annoying thing about OS News commenting system. I guess it is alright for this limit to exist within the thread I posted in, but not in all the others.


Yes, this is quite frustrating. I was the second or third comment and now there are 90+ and I can't up/down vote even though there are new directions the discussion is taking. Am I supposed to avoid making any comments early so that I can retain the ability to vote later? If no one wants to be first to comment so they retain their ability to moderate, then there will no comments to moderate.

Reply Parent Score: 2

cmchittom Member since:
2011-03-18

Or, perhaps, it could be done stackoverflow-style where you need e.g. 3 votes of "Troll" before the post is slapped with any negative score, at which point it drops 3 points immediately. That way one guy saying "Troll" and one saying "Inaccurate" and one saying "Off topic" don't have any effect; a consensus must be reached, first.


I really like this idea. Though of course, then somebody has to decide how many votes is "enough."

Reply Parent Score: 1

sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

Though of course, then somebody has to decide how many votes is "enough."

It's not so hard to decide. In the first place just making it 2 or 3 would be sufficient to begin with. In the second place you could base it on a kind of activity factor: How many replies there are or, if OS News tracks this, how many logged-in viewers there are. The ide being that e.g. two votes of "Troll" on a story with 10 views is probably sufficient, but maybe 10 votes on a story with 1000 views would be more appropriate.

Reply Parent Score: 2