1. 12

Hello Lobste.rs people :) For the past few days I’ve noticed no downvote buttons available, only update.

Is this a new thing, or is it that certain individuals have lost downvoting privileges?

  1.  

  2. 22

    Longer than the last few days: https://lobste.rs/s/wdjrcd/tags_flags

    I’ve revamped the comment flagging UI to further emphasize that they’re for alerting mods when a user doesn’t want to engage and curb their abuse for punishing disagreement. Visually, flagging comments now looks like flagging stories with a text link rather than an down-pointing arrow, and flagging a comment collapses the tree. Nothing on the site refers to “downvoting” any more.

    Also, our source code is available for answering these questions.

    1. 5

      Hm I also missed this…

      I don’t quite understand the rationale: doesn’t removing downvoting encourage flagging? But flagging is only for when mods should get involved?

      I thought it made sense to have downvoting mean “I want to see less or I disagree, but mods shouldn’t get involved”. i.e. it’s not against the rules, but not desired either

      The classic example is the genre of posts that is “my programming language preferences presented as fact”, which invariably attract a ton of comments, mostly angry ones, and they mostly make the site worse IMO. I don’t flag those since it’s not against the rules per se, but I feel like they deserve a downvote, to avoid generating repetitive and unnecessary discussions

      I “hide” most of those now, but occasionally get sucked in … Do hides factor into placement?

      1. 12

        I thought it made sense to have downvoting mean “I want to see less or I disagree, but mods shouldn’t get involved”. i.e. it’s not against the rules, but not desired either

        Personally I think downvoting to express disagreement isn’t the right approach. It doesn’t communicate the substance of disagreement. A comment indicating the reason for that disagreement is feedback to the original poster, and the community can use upvotes to communicate agreement with either view.

        I really liked the old OSnews approach to this, where in order to downvote, a user had to choose between “spam”, “offtopic”, or “inaccurate.” It really made me stop and think quite a few times, “is this objectively wrong or against my subjective opinion?” Hiding content from the community based on my subjective view doesn’t seem helpful, but if a post is likely misleading people to the point where they’re better off not reading it, then a downvote makes sense.

        1. 2

          I very much agree with your first paragraph - that’s what I intensely dislike about the beige site. Was that person’s comment downvoted because it’s technically incorrect? Disagreement? Misunderstanding? Different sense of humour? It’s a conversation killer.

          1. 1

            But isn’t that exactly what lobste.rs had? When you downvote, you choose why.

            That was an explicit and intentional difference between lobste.rs and HN as far as I remember.

          2. 6

            Twitter has the concept of “ratio” - content that gets lots of comments and few upvotes is assumed to be generating negative comments, and gets ranked lower.

          3. 4

            they’re for alerting mods when a user doesn’t want to engage and curb their abuse for punishing disagreement

            Fantastic! This has long been a complaint of mine here and on other sites, and I’m sorry I missed the original announcement.

            1. 3

              Greatly appreciate it. HN suffers from this, where replies are being tailored and tailored not to receive upvotes, but not to receive downvotes. Everyone’s opinion matters as long as it’s polite and should not be downvoted by some “elitist commenters” on a forum, just because the opinion is different.

            2. 5

              I think you’re above any minimum karma requirements, so it’s probably the fact it’s been moved to flag.

              1. 4

                The flag button is still there for me :). Could it be that you’re expecting a down arrow below the score?