Paul, could you please close this thread for me? Thanks. And sorry for waking up the trolls; that was never my intention.

Comments (56)

56 responses to “Downvotes”

  1. FalseAgent

    Yup. But the last time I said "no need for downvotes, just upvotes will do", it got massively downvoted (proving your point) and some dude blasted at me for not supporting freedom of expression or something.

    EDIT: lol this comment is getting downvoted. Well done, thurrott community

    • skane2600

      In reply to FalseAgent:

      A down-vote is more like the freedom of non-expression :)

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to skane2600:

        Nonexpression is neither commenting nor voting up or down. Down- and up-votes on this site are anonymous feedback without rationale.

        Me, I preferred the ZDNet comment system of several years ago when it'd show who up-voted and who down-voted comments. Nothing like full disclosure and lack of anonymity.

  2. pderosa

    I don't particularly care for the downvote mechanism but I do like that I have an option to disagree. Another way users could be offered that option is via an anonymous poll at the end of articles. If you required an account to vote the results could be quite interesting.

    I'm really curious for instance how many people here share Paul's feelings about say Apple and Andromeda. I don't particularly care about Andromeda, but some of you seem quite excited about it. Is that the majority of folks here? I'd really like to know.

  3. curtisspendlove

    Heh. I’ve been around the Internet long enough not to take anything in comment boards personally.

    I’m pretty sure I’ve been downvoted plenty of times just because I say something nice about an Apple product or service.

    I'm confident in what I do, so I don’t mind disagreement. I do appreciate a comment of clarification. But I’m not too bent out of shape, nor do I lose much sleep because an anonymous entity on the internet triggered a button.


  4. jwpear

    I just use the upvote to negate the down votes that seem unwarranted.

  5. Daishi

    I couldn't agree more.

    I actually raised this as an issue in a feedback thread a few months back, but it didn't seem to go anywhere.

  6. madthinus

    Can I down vote this post?

  7. PeterC

    I always thought an agree or disagree button would be more fun. I know it’s not much different than upvoting downvoting but to me we live our everyday lives agreeing/disagreeing with stuff and disagreeing prompts an internal question “why?” I’ve no problem with anyone disagreeing with me and posting their points. It’s what creates debate and learning.

    Maybe make the up/down vote button only work if you submit a response. Oh and rename it agree/disagree.

  8. pecosbob04

    This thread is getting way more action than it would seem to merit. I mean am I missing something? At the end of the year are the up / down votes tallied and the poster with the highest positive difference gets a monetary reward, or maybe even a participation trophy? The heat is definitely exceeding the light on this bad boy. Hell it's the internet no one knows or gives a damn if you are a dog. To quote a meme from the early days. We now return you to the current pissing contest already in progress.

  9. Simard57

    can the down vote be re-purposed to be a spam report -- please!

  10. hrlngrv

    Many share your opinion of down-voting. Others believe up-voting without down-voting serves no higher purpose than giving all 4-year-old T-ball players trophies.

    Your goal would likely be best achieved with neither down- nor up-voting buttons. Only comments, with those agreeing with you or really appreciating your comment more likely to leave a response saying so, and those really disliking it needing to leave a comment to indicate such.

    If down-voting really gets you down, never go anywhere close to Reddit or sites which use Disqus.

    • skane2600

      In reply to hrlngrv:

      If you agree with something there's no argument to make, but if you disagree, there is. That's the primary difference. The T-ball analogy would make sense if Paul's site up-voted all posts automatically, but that's not the case.

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to skane2600:

        Rhetorical overstatement.

        Nevertheless, I'm in the camp which believes a simple mechanism to express agreement or appreciation without a comparably simple mechanism for expressing disagreement or disapproval is needlessly biased. It infantilizes commentors.

        • skane2600

          In reply to hrlngrv:

          "Rhetorical overstatement."

          A euphemism for "I was wrong".

          BTW, nobody here wants or needs you to protect them from being infantilized.

          • hrlngrv

            In reply to skane2600:

            . . . A euphemism for "I was wrong". . .

            Or intentionally lying. I'll let you ponder the semantic distinction.

            • skane2600

              In reply to hrlngrv:

              I don't know you personally, but my sense is that while sometimes your logic is faulty (as is the case for all of us), you don't deliberately intend to lie.

              • hrlngrv

                In reply to skane2600:

                . . . you don't deliberately intend to lie.

                Ponder this: I'm lying.

                Pedantic untruths serve rhetorical purposes.

                • skane2600

                  In reply to hrlngrv:

                  "Pedantic untruths serve rhetorical purposes."

                  Maybe in poetry and unfortunately very often in politics, but not in a technical discussion if you want to be taken seriously.

                • hrlngrv

                  In reply to skane2600:

                  This branch isn't a discussion about technology. It's 2 discussions: one about the merits or not of trophies or medals for mere participation, and the other for the merits of balance between being able to up-vote and down-vote.

                  Keeping the actual topic(s) of discussion in mind would help your argumentation.

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to skane2600:

        If you agree with something there's no argument to make . . .

        If the comment with which one disagrees is purely subjective, possibly including preemptive vituperation against those who'd disagree, there's also no argument to make, only disagreement to register.

        Example, if needed: Windows Phone was the best mobile OS ever, and anyone who disagrees is a moron. Is any reasoned disagreement possible? As for disagreement more generally, is any more needed by now?

        • skane2600

          In reply to hrlngrv:

          Insults are self-commenting. They don't require a down-vote to be recognized as such.

        • boots

          In reply to hrlngrv:

          I could agree that Windows Phone was the best mobile OS ever. And I could also disagree that anyone who disagrees is a moron.

          But if I had just down-voted you, how would you know what part of your comment I disagree with?

  11. Paul Thurrott

    Yeah. I find the whole downvote thing to be cheap (in that its anonymous) and demoralizing. I will ask about this at our next meeting.

    • wright_is

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      But only having upvoting is also wrong. Either you have the opportunity to agree or disagree with a vote, or you should have to comment.

      For me, one without the other doesn't make sense.

      I think it also gives you an idea of whether your comments make sense or have gotten the wrong end of the stick.

      On The Register, for example, which can be very cantacerous, from over 20,000 votes, 98% are up votes on my account.

      If I get down votes, I stop and think, why have I been down voted? Because I'm defending the "wrong company", from the respect of the down voter, or have I really made a mistake?

    • IanYates82

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      A half-way point would be to at least show total up-votes versus down-votes (like at Ars Technica)

      Or, *much* better yet, more like the Github reaction emojis so we can actually choose things like

      • Totally agree (in Bill & Ted voice of course)
      • I wish this were true, but it's not
      • You're wrong, just wrong
      • You're right, but I am not happy

      etc - only 6 I reckon at most.

    • pecosbob04

      In reply to paul-thurrott: Why not have a time limited, say 3 month, mandatory poll. in other words until you participate in the poll you cannot post or vote (up or down) in any other topic / forum?

      For example,

      1 Scourge of the Western World
      2 Greatest thing since sliced bagels (and Lox)
      3 "Can't we all just get along?"
      4 My arthritis is so bad that up / down votes are my last link to (semi) human discourse.
      5 This topic is one in which I am deeply interested and your exposition of all the nuanced variables is the best I've ever seen. Please send all your banking and credit card information to spammy-mcspamface @ so we can continue this dialogue.
      6 I think the solution is to ... UHH SQUIRREL...
      7 if you outlaw downvotes only outlaws will have downvotes.
      8 If I can't downvote I will cancel my subscription if I have one, never darken this portal again, destroy all my msft / aapl hardware and software and say mean things about you on the intertubes.
      9 If you continue to allow downvotes I will cancel my subscription if I have one, never darken this portal again destroy all my apple / msft hardware and software and say mean things about you on the intertubes.
      10 None of the above.

      You get the idea.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      See ZDNet's comments. Hover over upvotes, and it'll show a list of all those who up-voted. Do the same for down-votes, and there's no more anonymity.

    • christian.hvid

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      OK, good to hear! I take it that this is just built-in functionality and not a deliberate choice of yours.

  12. Paul Thurrott

    It looks like all I can do is delete it.

    Want to make sure you're OK with that first.