1) Not sure what TOMs means, but assuming that they're a subset of forum users: OK, I can see how bilingualexpat's post might have been read as didactic by some, but the "We need to..." formulation is pretty mild as such things go. Honestly, if a gentle first-person-plural exhortation to kindness aggravates people so much that they have to downvote it... Well, I am still mystified.
3) I think there's some truth in that. At the same time, the up/downvoting system seems precisely intended to make people reflect about why their post got a negative reaction, and thereby perhaps to modify behavior that most users disapprove of. That purpose is undermined when downvoting is perceived to be arbitrary and/or excessive -- and this now appears to be the case for at least three active users of these forums: alienew, bilingualexpat and myself.
Keyword in your own post, "perceived". If there "appears" to be an excessive amount of down votes or vendetta towards these members, you would think that everyone of their posts would be voted down. But do you see that?
And I noticed that you've conveniently left point 2 unaddressed.
That Carly Simon song comes to mind. "You're so vain (you're so vain)
I bet you think this song is about you
Don't you don't you?"
@ASatiricalBloke wrote: "If there "appears" to be an excessive amount of down votes or vendetta towards these members, you would think that everyone of their posts would be voted down. But do you see that?"
Just off the cuff, I came up with three other possible explanations for why every one of their posts might not be downvoted -- there are probably more. (i) Negative bias: a moderately tilted playing field doesn't change 100% of outcomes, just those on the margins. (ii) Abitrary or capricious downvoting combined with social dynamics such as mobbing. (iii) A multi-sockpuppet account holder who refrains from universal downvoting for tactical or arbitary/capricious reasons.
So I don't think your argument settles anything.
@ASatiricalBloke wrote: "And I noticed that you've conveniently left point 2 unaddressed."
(A) I don't think there's any norm in this type of forum that requires points to be addressed comprehensively. (B) If we're playing that game, your own response "conveniently" left my point 1 unaddressed as well. (C) As it happens, I actually did have a response to point 2 written, and then deliberately took it out to avoid pettiness and acrimony. But since you are baiting me by implying that my elision was somehow underhanded, I guess I will bite. It read "I see we're back to whacking the GoKunming pinata again. I can't recall anyone being banned aside from Miyamoto in the last few years, so this old grievance seems marginally relevant at best."
@ASatiricalBloke wrote: "I bet you think this song is about you."
Good song, but I haven't complained about downvotes of my own posts.
This exchange is getting to be too time-consuming, so I will not respond further -- you can go ahead and have the last word.
ok, so I edited my downvoted post.
Downvotes are silly. If you are participating in this downvoting silliness, then you are a silly person.
Take herenows last post for instance. He makes a lot of different points. So when you downvote, it means you disagree with every single point he makes? Or are you holding a grudge and being petty?
downvoting is silly and childish and petty and makes no sense.
wow, the forum seems unusually quiet. did aliennew get bullied off the forum?
stop the downvoting nonsense. stop bullying people just because you don't like what they post.
My rare instances of agreeing with @dolphin.
Down-votes discourage participation. Not good for GoK.
Whereas up-votes/likes/love buttons encourage active participation by positively reinforcing users to openly speak their minds. More discussions equal more traffic.
There's a good reason major social sites don't implement down-votes at all. If down-votes exist, they bottom out at zero. Very few sites display the negative votes by themselves, let alone conceal comments.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, Disqus, Digg, Reddit, Pinterest, just to name a few, have all done their research. They follow the same protocol by disabling the discouragement tools that deter user engagement.
These sites understand the deep-rooted psychological effects of down-votes on users' mindset. Our intrinsic fear of being rejected by the tribe. Most of us would rather conform quietly than oppose the norm and risk the feeling of getting socially shunned by the group. The mere apprehension of a potential disapproving vote may keep members at bay from even attempting to comment.
More so the case for uninitiated newbies seeking to fit-in in an new environment may inherently perceive a single down-vote as a collective voice, which in fact is a misrepresentation of the community.
GoK ought to look into it. Potential active participants far exceeds the trolls of JC or HH.
I thought this discussion was supposed to be about the GoKunming website as a whole, not just the forum.
Trolls, irreverent posts, and thread hijacking also "discourage participation"
I am personally all for "quiet" forums if it means that what posts do appear actually serve to provide useful information about living, working and playing in Yunnan.
agree with all above
downvoting is antagonistic and ultimately counterproductive since posts subjected to downvoting will often be opened
upvoting/likes + 'report abuse' alongside each post may work better,,those who really feel offended can argue their case to the moderators,,but it's more likely people would simply 'ignore' a post that irks them,,being ignored is just as telling as being kicked with a downvote
posts that break the forum rules should be permanently locked and 'left in situ' so the poster is visible to all
quiet forums - less superficial noise - is fine,, if there's nothing useful to be said then so be it.