up down post

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Awesome Dude's picture
Awesome Dude
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Jan 20 2013 22:15
up down post

Who thinks it's time to get rid of the the frustrating populist tracker of "upping" and "downing" posts? Libcom was a much more interesting and engaging forum before that fucking addition.

Ethos's picture
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Jan 20 2013 22:47
Tommy Ascaso wrote:
If it was more interesting and engaging that was only because there weren't any posts complaining about the addition.
Up (3)
Down (2)

I don't know why, but that made me smile.

I used to think it was pretty shit, but now I think the positive aspect, i.e. people can voice their approval without having to bother to elaborate another redundant post (that's how I tend to use it), outweighs, or at least balances, the negative aspect of it, which I imagine to be that users can become sort of 'ratings whores' or can get inflated egos because a bunch of dickheads agree with their posts.

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Jan 20 2013 23:28

I think the up/down feature is pretty shit, but it's not the reason the forums on libcom have become less active. That's down to a lot more factors, not the least of which includes the exit of some of the more prodigious and flamey posters, the increase in quality and quantity of the blogs, less ongoing struggles, and the mass use of Twitter.

Android
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Jan 21 2013 00:51

I actually don't mind the up-down feature. I use it.

Chilli Sauce wrote:
I think the up/down feature is pretty shit, but it's not the reason the forums on libcom have become less active. That's down to a lot more factors, not the least of which includes the exit of some of the more prodigious and flamey posters, the increase in quality and quantity of the blogs, less ongoing struggles, and the mass use of Twitter.

Could you elabourate on why you think increased blog activity relates to less activity on the forums. I thought the opposite would be the case.

And I am not sure there is less activity on the forums, there is certainly a fall in the quality of the discussions.

Chilli Sauce's picture
Chilli Sauce
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Jan 21 2013 08:58

Android, I don't know if you got the chance to read this, but the number of post on libcom has fallen pretty steadily over the past five years with less than half as many post in 2012 as 2007 while the number of blogs and bloggers has undoubtedly multiplied.

FWIW, I think the discussion under the blogs is, on average, of far higher quality than on the forums. While the blogs are not immune from flaming, it seems that the blogs are more focused and a far better place for discussions of strategy and current events. The forums tend to get derailed a lot more and are more likely to have threads by newbies asking questions (nothing wrong with that, of course) or are general conversation threads that aren't of the highest quality and have a habit of getting side-tracked or flamey.

But I guess a lot of that is just my personal sense of the situation.

Android
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Jan 21 2013 13:07
Chilli Sauce wrote:
Android, I don't know if you got the chance to read this, but the number of post on libcom has fallen pretty steadily over the past five years with less than half as many post in 2012 as 2007 while the number of blogs and bloggers has undoubtedly multiplied.

I had not read that. I am guessing a factor in why there were more posts 5-6 years ago on here was to with controversial discussions on various questions. The aftermath of that was that libcom was a more self-selected and narrower group of forum posters. Which doesn't really make for long discussion threads, high volumes of posts, etc. Or at least decreases the number of them.

For what it is worth, I don't necessarily think the self-selected, narrower group is a bad thing per se. Since Libcom exists for a reason and has a remit. Just look at RevLeft for an example of the opposite taken to its extreme.

Also, I have the impression that some posters 'grew up' and posting on libcom wasn't as important to them as it once was.

I don't think existing levels of class struggle or usage of Twitter is a key factor in the volume of forum posts.

Chilli Sauce wrote:
I think the discussion under the blogs is, on average, of far higher quality than on the forums. While the blogs are not immune from flaming, it seems that the blogs are more focused and a far better place for discussions of strategy and current events.

Yes. Although the blog discussions are not developed as much as they could be. Whilst forum discussions tend to be more developed, for better or for worse. Over time that could change, since blogs are only really been promoted lately on here.

Chilli Sauce wrote:
The forums tend to get derailed a lot more and are more likely to have threads by newbies asking questions (nothing wrong with that, of course) or are general conversation threads that aren't of the highest quality and have a habit of getting side-tracked or flamey.

I don't really mind newbie threads, even if they are on occasion annoying. It just seems there is a lot of nonsense threads recently

[PS - apologies to OP for totally derailing your thread!]

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Jan 21 2013 14:08

Class struggle has an impact on the amount of traffic to the site, but not in terms of usage of the forums. Our traffic went up in 2011, for example, but usage of the forums did not.

Facebook has definitely sucked up a lot of the discussion which would have previously happened on the forums. Lots of the articles we post, for example get lots more comments on people's various Facebook walls than beneath the articles themselves…

Android
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Jan 21 2013 15:24
Tommy Ascaso wrote:
Site traffic generally tracks the level of class struggle, when exciting things are happening and we're able to cover them or people start threads on them we tend to get more visitors. Recent examples being the student movement in 2010 and the riots in August 2011 iirc.

True. Although my point was about forum posts/participation, as opposed to site traffic.

Tommy Ascaso wrote:
Social media has also had a massive impact, most of the long term posters now spend more time on social media (either twitter or facebook) than they do on the forums. This is even true for the admins, you might not think it's a key factor but it undoubtedly is.

Steven. wrote:
Facebook has definitely sucked up a lot of the discussion which would have previously happened on the forums. Lots of the articles we post, for example get lots more comments on people's various Facebook walls down beneath the articles themselves…

On reflection I was clearly wrong. J.C. and Steven's point makes sense now that I think about it a bit more. My previous comment about Twitter was probably due to ignorance. I didn't use it, whereas I use Facebook and it is definitely true that a lot of discussions happen there, that in the past would have taken place elsewhere.

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Jan 21 2013 15:52

I think that the up/down function is pretty good - it gives you an idea of how widely some opinions/analyses are shared. I've found it really helpful in conversations about gender when people have minimised an issue or been otherwise problematic - you can usually see from the ups and downs that the people reading don't necessarily share some of the ideas and behaviours that libcom forums are (in)famous for.

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Jan 22 2013 16:46

I always have a habit of upping my own posts and phoning round to press people to do the same by way of bullying, torment and blackmail.

jolasmo
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Jan 21 2013 18:23

up down girl you've been living in a white bread world...

Personally I've never really understood what people are complaining about. If you don't like the feature it is pretty unobtrusive and easy to ignore while you're scrolling through a thread. Calling it "populist" seems to me about on par with calling the admins "cops".

As for the argument that "ups" are good (because they obviate the need to post one line posts expressing agreement with a given argument) and "downs" are bad (because they give people an alternative to commenting on and rebutting posts they disagree with) this seems to be predicated on the farcical idea that it is always worth having an argument with anyone who you don't agree with. I seriously wonder whether the people who make this argument have ever had a political discussion with anyone, ever.

~J.

petey
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Jan 21 2013 22:02

my only confusion comes from whether or not to vote a post on the basis of content instead of the fact of posting, viz, whether to 'up' or 'down' an excellent write-up or timely notice of a horrid situation.

anyway, i like the feature, mostly for izbl's reason.

jolasmo
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Jan 22 2013 16:42

Lol, three people downed my post, without responding. PROOF IF PROOF WERE NEEDED of the cancerous results of the up/down voting system!

I generally up/down things based on the post rather than the topic, so a good writeup of a bad thing that happened would get an up from me. It's more ambiguous on Facefuck because it's actualy called a "like" (e.g. petey and jolasmo like "Rape & Sexual Violence in the Anarchist Movement" is a bit unfortunate!). The simplicity of the up/down vote by comparison is pretty good IMO, especially for a site where the subjects under discussion are generally a bit heavier than on FB.

Actually I'd like to see the feature extended to blog posts and maybe news/history/library articles too.

~J.

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the button
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Jan 22 2013 16:45

As I've said on another thread on this very topic, when I "up" I mean, "Yeah, good point, nothing to add really," and when I "down" I mean "I'm not even going to dignify this shit with a response."

It's a shame you can't down OPs, but I'll live.

the button's picture
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Jan 22 2013 16:53

Three downs cry

radicalgraffiti
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Jan 22 2013 16:54

it would be good if people who aren't signed in could see up/downs as well

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Jan 22 2013 17:27

It's noticeable that some of the worst offenders of the abusive and mysogynist (etc) bullying of the past, were not only the loudest whiners and wailers when the down-vote system was brought in, but despite their frequent advice to their victims to "toughen the fuck up!" turned out to be such delicate egos that they couldn't take the down-votes their attacks garnered and have since buggered off (thus rather revealing that the opportunity for bullying was the main attraction for them in the first place). Personally I think this is a positive development. And basically in keeping with a "safer spaces" orientation.

Also, I can't help being reminded of the wails in the newsprint media at the moment by reactionary columnists about "Twitter mob lynchings". Seems some people just really don't like feedback. (Bring on the down votes! twisted )

Arbeiten's picture
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Jan 22 2013 21:40
the button wrote:
As I've said on another thread on this very topic, when I "up" I mean, "Yeah, good point, nothing to add really," and when I "down" I mean "I'm not even going to dignify this shit with a response."

I agree with this (there we are nay sayers, you happy now? utterly superfluous post).

Steven.'s picture
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Jan 22 2013 23:00
radicalgraffiti wrote:
it would be good if people who aren't signed in could see up/downs as well

yeah, that's in the pipeline

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May 17 2014 07:58

In response to Hieronymous and EmC, amongst others:

I quite like the up down feature as I found that I had trouble keeping up with posters who either worked at desks where they were able to argue all day, or those who were unemployed and verbose (thinking of a specific Hegelian whom I can't recall). I'm not particularly good at online debate and I think that my feelings about the up/down system can be summed up in the excellent posts of my fellow libcom reader/writers. I am indebted to them for expressing my feelings. The following quotes aren't credited, apologies.

[i][i]having an argument with anyone who you don't agree with. I seriously wonder whether the people who make this argument have ever had a political discussion with anyone, ever.

[i]As I've said on another thread on this very topic, when I "up" I mean, "Yeah, good point, nothing to add really," and when I "down" I mean "I'm not even going to dignify this shit with a response."

It's noticeable that some of the worst offenders of the abusive and mysogynist (etc) bullying of the past, were not only the loudest whiners and wailers when the down-vote system was brought in, but despite their frequent advice to their victims to "toughen the fuck up!" turned out to be such delicate egos that they couldn't take the down-votes their attacks garnered and have since buggered off (thus rather revealing that the opportunity for bullying was the main attraction for them in the first place). Personally I think this is a positive development. And basically in keeping with a "safer spaces" orientation.

Also, I can't help being reminded of the wails in the newsprint media at the moment by reactionary columnists about "Twitter mob lynchings". Seems some people just really don't like feedback. (Bring on the down votes! twisted )
[/i][/i][/i]

I hope that these quotes are carefully considered, as I don't have much facility to contend with an extended argument or especially an acrimonious debate. I merely think that these viewpoints are worthy of consideration.

Special consideration is given to EmC as she may have received some negative votes because people are not willing to face the depth and breadth of damage caused by sexual assault and discrimination in the milieu.

***I cant get the second quote to italicize, my apologies.

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May 17 2014 15:48
Mr. Jolly wrote:
I always have a habit of upping my own posts and phoning round to press people to do the same by way of bullying, torment and blackmail.

When I first posted on Libcom I did the same but demanded down votes instead of up. I achieved phenomenal success with this.

I just can't see any reason for beef with this feature. It doesn't hold much weight it it can be interesting - a number of times I've read a post that hasn't flicked a switch with me and then seen it get a flood of up or down votes which has prompted me to look deeper into the content, so I reckon it has definitely improved my learning to some degree.

Spikymike
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May 17 2014 18:47

Well I agree with Hieronymous comment on this point made on the other thread. Why some people mark particular posts up or down probably runs to a large spectrum of reasons which the rest of us can only guess at, though it's hardly the most important issue. I for one hardly bother to even note such ups and downs anyway so they are wasted on me.

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May 17 2014 21:05

I vote DOWN on the up/down option
JUST TO LET YOU ALL KNOW

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May 17 2014 21:35
cresspot wrote:
I vote DOWN on the up/down option
JUST TO LET YOU ALL KNOW

We've been through all that here:

http://libcom.org/forums/general/qeld-acab-video-29042014