I'm proposing a voting method for taking FPP posts down in Mathowie's absence. June 29, 2003 9:11 PM   Subscribe

I'm proposing a voting method for taking FPP posts down in Mathowie's absence. Details inside...
posted by woil to Feature Requests at 9:11 PM (42 comments total)

I'm proposing a voting method for taking FPP posts down in Mathowie's absence. I'm not recommending something as complicated as Slashdot's Karma system -- But here's what I've currently come up with:

Every time your front page post isn't deleted after a 48 hour period you get one point. These points are saved over the life of your account.

When you see a particularly horrible post, and Mat seems to be absent you click a new link that allows you to spend a single one of your points toward taking it down. Taking it down would cost somewhere between 5 to 15 points in total so several people would have to join in on the takedown.

To make it less a Tyranny of the Majoritytm we could also allow the spending of points on threads that some people want to keep up. With each point spent taking away one or perhaps two of the points attempting to bring the post down. This would likely remove the possibility of a group of people trying to control the viewpoints on the front page for their own interests by eliminating things they don't like.

You could make it so that the points were non-refundable or so that they were refunded to the side that eventually wins it. I'm leaning toward the non-refundable so that we don't often get into point spending wars -- only when it is necessary.
posted by woil at 9:11 PM on June 29, 2003

Too complex - how about just a "delete this thread" request that, once it hits a certain number (60 requests? 100 requests?) deletes the thread?
posted by jonson at 9:15 PM on June 29, 2003

You do know, woil, that Matt probably will not consider anything that involves coding. Besides, what jonson said.
posted by mischief at 9:16 PM on June 29, 2003

Are these... Pepsi Points?

If so, I have quite a few from that time I naively thought I could actually win the Harrier Jet.

Anyway, if this is implemented be assured I will immediately start a prison-like gang to pool all the points together, and you will have to deal with my strongarm tactics to ensure that your posts will not be deleted. You may receive a pass for a couple of packs of cigarettes, otherwise you're getting a beatdown my friend. In other words, I certainly vote 'yes' to this idea.
posted by Stan Chin at 9:16 PM on June 29, 2003

*foresees the need for a donation drive to pay for a new server to be devoted exclusively to traffic generated by requests for explanations on the proposed new voting system*, apart from which, it is just too complicated to work. Nice thought, though.
posted by dg at 9:19 PM on June 29, 2003

Mischief (and Matt) - what is this website currently written in? I'd probably be willing to help out with it. Depending on how it's currently set up the coding for this wouldn't be very difficult. Assuming that it is database driven, and the site is written in a decent language (php?) simply do the following:

For managing a user's points:
1) add a field to the user table for points.
2) increase a users points every time they post
3) remove one point from user every time they get a post deleted
4) don't let a user spend a point if points < 2 and they've posted in the past 24 hours.br>

For managing the FPP points:
1) add a field to the FPP table for points
2) point++ for a certain link (and possible confirm)
3) point-- for a different link
4) check to make person doesn't vote twice on same FPP
5) each time (2) is done if points are above a certain value FPP goes bye bye.

It actually isn't that trixy
posted by woil at 9:26 PM on June 29, 2003

It's not a technical issue. He just doesn't want to mess with it.
posted by mischief at 9:31 PM on June 29, 2003

and to get these points, you would need to have a post last >48 hours?

so if i'm not an active poster i could not have a say in keeping/saving post? does that mean that to have points i'll need to make a bunch of mediocre --yet not bad-- posts so i can have points?

how about just ignoring [or make fun of it in comments] the bad post and know it will go away when matt returns from his life outside mefi.
posted by birdherder at 9:38 PM on June 29, 2003

How about if we all just ignore "bad" FPP? That'll show 'em!
posted by davidmsc at 9:43 PM on June 29, 2003

Will these "points" be measured in Megabucks?
posted by Hammerikaner at 10:24 PM on June 29, 2003

No, MetaBucks.
posted by wendell at 10:41 PM on June 29, 2003

... his life outside mefi
Wash your mouth out.
posted by dg at 11:36 PM on June 29, 2003

An expansion on jonson's concept:

1. Members can "vote to delete" on any post.
2. A post is deleted after a + c votes, where:
- a is an arbitrary constant, like 10 or 20; and
- c is the number of comments in the thread.
3. Your vote doesn't count if:
- You've already voted; or
- You've commented in the thread.

In practice, this would work as follows:
- One person would "sacrifice" his/her right to vote by commenting in the thread and explaining why the post should be deleted;
- Everyone else, wanting to kill the thread as quickly as possible, will choose to vote to delete rather than posting a snarky comment in the thread - thus avoiding the nullification of their vote and avoiding making it that much harder for the thread to get deleted.

Mathowie's job would be to figure out how well the system is working, and move the constant a up or down accordingly.
posted by PrinceValium at 11:42 PM on June 29, 2003

It's not a technical issue. He just doesn't want to mess with it.

What are you talking about mischief and why are you speaking for me?

I change some aspect of the site's code a couple times a week. Big projects like adding a voting/removal system require a significant bit of work and are the types of things I leave until I have a free weekend and a lot of motivation to do it (which can be a while).
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:47 PM on June 29, 2003

Just reiterating what you've said in the past. I figured you did occasional maintenance jobs; that just goes with the territory.
posted by mischief at 11:58 PM on June 29, 2003

I think that it's a lovely idea and it would probably benefit the front page. but all hell would break loose, stan's comments about prison gangs is not really a joke -- we'd see mefi mobs and fpp lynchings on a daily basis, plus a lot of MetaTalk post-deletion analysis.
posted by matteo at 1:04 AM on June 30, 2003

As an idea, it gives too much power to people who constantly FPP. (How much power would Miguel have?) And the last thing we want to see is people FPP Whoring.

Plus what's to stop me posting the same thing over and over. I'm sure I could use your FPP points up pretty quickly.

What I think is pretty simple. We have a good old fashioned election, and vote ourselves a guest editor. That editor will then have the "Power of Matt" when he's not there.

Plus, we get to see all that political stuff in action, applied to us, the stuff that we always decry and talk about in various threads
posted by seanyboy at 2:56 AM on June 30, 2003

Plus - with an election, we can create the election site, and Matt doesn't have to do too much work.
posted by seanyboy at 2:58 AM on June 30, 2003

I see too much of a chance of abuse of power here.

Long live the benevolent dictatorship!
posted by konolia at 4:41 AM on June 30, 2003

arrrr me lads, thar's a strong scent o' mutiny in the ayre.
posted by kv at 5:33 AM on June 30, 2003

I don't know, I don't think karma works that well for smaller sites (although when I first came across the concept I used to think it did). It seems to works OK for large sites w/ hundreds of posts, e.g. Slashdot, just for basic filtering, but many of moderations there seem a bit random and are definitely influenced by whether you post early in the discussion or the thread. But for smaller boards, folks should say what they want, rather than be influenced by what it takes to get karma; I think karma can make things more homogeneous and boring and exclusionary. And theoretically (metaphysically?) karma is supposed to be about helping others rather than promoting yourself, no?

Anyway I'll second davidmsc ("Ignore 'em!"), and skallas (character/formatting limit on FPPs), and support Matt's metametafiltering.
posted by carter at 5:51 AM on June 30, 2003

So far as I see it, our job as members of MeFi is basically gementagious. I.e., GMNTGA: Getting Matt Not To Go Away. Or, at the very least, gementacio-dementio. I.e., GMNTCDM: Getting Matt Not To Close MetaFilter Down.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 5:56 AM on June 30, 2003

I really like PrinceValium's idea. But I don't think we need any system at all, really. But I do think PV's idea is pretty neat.
posted by Witty at 6:09 AM on June 30, 2003

Honestly, how hard is it to ignore bad FPPs until Matt gets back? He's never gone for more than 24 hours or so (I think).

So we had two ad-posts yesterday, and Matt wasn't here to delete them right away. They were gone within 6 hours.

I just don't see what the big deal is.
posted by graventy at 6:51 AM on June 30, 2003

I don't think prestige as an issue would influence how well this system could work. As for logical consideration, I'm assuming that you mean people will not show logical consideration when voting for the guest editor. I disagree. This would not be a high-school popularity contest because (in my opinion) people who populate metafilter care more-or-less about what goes on the front page. If anything, I'm worried that this system will enforce a liberal/left wing bias, but for a short period, I'd be happy to give it a try. If bias or bickering does appear, then we'll try something else next time.

The main reasons I had for proposing an elective system are as follows. Firstly it keeps the current setup (albeit - with a different leader than Matt). Secondly, from Matt's pov, it's easy - he just needs to give delete access to a couple of people. Finally we'd have a heap of fun talking about who and what and why on metatalk and in other forums.
posted by seanyboy at 7:00 AM on June 30, 2003

he just needs to give delete access to a couple of people.

He did that years ago. We just don't know who they are. When he leaves town, they take over. It's all very mysterious and terrifying.
posted by iconomy at 7:29 AM on June 30, 2003

here we go down to slashdotville, slashdotville, shashdotville,
here we go down to slashdotville so early in the goring.
posted by quonsar at 7:48 AM on June 30, 2003

There's a few differences between the proposed situation and slashdot.

Slashdot contains moderation on comments not FPP's.
Slashdot FPP's are edited/censored by editors before (not after) posting.
Slashdot doesn't delete moderated items - It just hides them.
Metafilter is better than slashdot.

As the song says
"There's a long way to go before we get to slashdotville, baby. "
posted by seanyboy at 8:00 AM on June 30, 2003

all good points seanyboy. what i meant by "slashdotville" was code-based attempts to solve problems, to me, mefi has always represented the opposite approach. (regardless of ones opinion of the success of the effort).
posted by quonsar at 9:07 AM on June 30, 2003

I agree with konolia -- long live our benevolent dictator -- and Miguel -- let's not get Matt to get mad and leave us twisting in the wind.

But, y'know, it doesn't really matter what I think, since it isn't my site and thus isn't my decision to make. Matt's site, Matt's way of doing things, Matt's decision on whether/when/how he delegates authority to anyone else.
posted by Vidiot at 9:21 AM on June 30, 2003

>Plus what's to stop me posting the same thing over and over. (seanyboy)

I believe that there already is a 24 hour lockout for most of us. If there isn't then perhaps there should be.

I suppose that people could attempt to abuse the system by FPPing a lot of mediocre posts. But I don't think that they would for the same reason(s) that they don't currently do this.

I hadn't thought about it, but the "what about people who don't FPP?" is somethign to think about. I'd only have two points with the system I proposed. However I don't think I'd really care that much. The reason I proposed this was not to allow for me or someone else gaining power but simply making Matt's life (at least his MeFi life) easier both when and when he's not here.

Lead to some good discussion either way. :)
posted by woil at 10:52 AM on June 30, 2003

One person would "sacrifice" his/her right to vote by commenting in the thread and explaining why the post should be deleted;

"Friends, Romans, Countrymen, I come to bury this post, not to praise it. The evil that men post lives after them. The good is oft interred with the bones...but not in this case."
posted by me3dia at 10:58 AM on June 30, 2003

Another point to consider, is how many people consistently post "only" bad FPPs? I think once they ignore the rules and get all the negative feedback, lesson learned. Why put a system like this into place?

Also, sometimes i like reading a "bad" FPP just to go through all the snarky comments. Instead of killing the thread, can it be moved?
posted by schlaager at 11:32 AM on June 30, 2003

quonsar is back and all is well in the world! :)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 12:12 PM on June 30, 2003

The site seems to work fine, and has for a long time. That's my 2cents, at least.
posted by cell divide at 2:07 PM on June 30, 2003

quonsar is back indeed. And he gets my nomination for guest editor...
posted by dash_slot- at 2:07 PM on June 30, 2003

[one can dream]
posted by dash_slot- at 2:08 PM on June 30, 2003

Long live the benevolent dictatorship!
Hear, hear. It ain't broke, so why try to fix it?
posted by dg at 3:44 PM on June 30, 2003

I think the election idea is fabulous. I don't really care so much about the winner -- I just look forward to the stunning, mind-breakingly beautiful muckraking.

And the Flash election ads, with foreboding voiceovers ticking off the dirt:

"quonsar SAYS he'll keep an eye on racist posts...but in April 2003, he showed his true colors."

With a slow fading, scrolling screenshot of meepzorp in the background.
posted by cortex at 4:19 PM on June 30, 2003

bad posts should automatically be fed to the MeFi pony.
posted by KnitWit at 7:31 AM on July 2, 2003

But isn't that what killed the bunny?
posted by konolia at 8:24 AM on July 2, 2003

Agreeing with cell divide here boss.

[/chain gang]
posted by i_cola at 10:02 AM on July 2, 2003

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