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On voting privileges

tejretics
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3/20/2016 3:35:35 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
Voting has become a major, talked-about issue on Debate.org. Currently, it"s a hot topic and many people are proposing varying changes, some of which I agree with, some of which I don"t. In this post, I"m going be focusing on a generic mistake made by people with proposals I disagree with ("mistake" might be too strong a word, since I do not believe I am objectively correct about the issue, nor that "objective correctness" on such an opinion-driven issue exists). For example, many people claim that voting standards/strictness should be reduced, which is a *defensible* position, although one I heartily disagree with. But the problem is an error they make regarding why voting and voting standards exist. They say "voters frequently get their voting privileges removed which is unfair." Similarly, I can find **tens** of threads with people complaining about their voting privileges getting removed.

Here"s the problem with any such claim.

Voting exists for the debaters, NOT the voters.

The reason **anyone** votes, or should vote, is as a service to the debaters. Many debaters debate for a clear outcome, and the vote gives that outcome, along with substantive reasoning and feedback. Debate is a fun activity, and this site"s whole interface is made for debate of all kinds. But note that the voter should vote **for the debaters" sake, not their own.** Voting standards should not be crafted in a way to appeal to the voters. They should be crafted for the debaters and the debaters only. Voters, think if you were a debater, and tell me what kinds of votes you would like. That is the kind of vote that should be allowed.

When voters complain about losing their privileges, it annoys me to no extent. They are unhappy with it. But why should they be unhappy with losing them? They are unable to do a service because they do it **badly.** It"s like an employee who is not even paid getting angry at getting fired for doing his job badly. The voting standards haven"t even changed: they have been clearly outlined, and you can see Bluesteel"s Voting Guide and Bsh1"s Guide to Voting Using the 7-Point System for reference regarding the same. I dislike the term "voting privileges." Voting is neither a right nor a privilege. It is a *service.* There can be incentives for doing that service. Some judges might even find it fun to vote. But they should fundamentally do it as a service to debaters.

One such incentive, it seems, is doing much more negative impact, i.e., the Voting Leaderboard. The Voting Leaderboard is essentially -- for those who are unaware -- a list of the most prolific voters on the site. It is ranked by number of votes. People often vote to get higher in that, and it was created as an incentive to increase vote count. Sadly, it is creating many more terrible votes - bad RFD"s that are sufficient nonetheless. (This is not a complaint about standards: the standards currently are ideal, in my opinion, and it is impossible to craft absolutely perfect standards avoiding all bad votes.) But the Voting Leaderboard has become something by which people cast annoying votes with no feedback just for getting a higher rank. Vote quantity isn"t important as long as there"s one vote, it"s fine. One good vote is easily better than twenty-one bad ones. Because bad votes don"t matter at all, because they shouldn"t decide an outcome. An outcome should be decided by capable judges, not by bad ones.

===

Quite simply, voting standards **should not** have the voters in mind. They should have vote quality first, and vote quantity second, in mind.
"Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe." - Frederick Douglass
CodingSource
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3/20/2016 3:55:04 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
God, I lost my voting privileges but I don't complain. I have been such a controversial figure so far, because of one voting official. I assure you that it is not the mods, but one official which I do not want to name.
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YYW
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3/20/2016 4:22:46 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
Without commenting on moderation, I fully agree with this statement:

Voting exists for the debaters, NOT the voters.

Vote upon others debates as you would have them vote upon yours.
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lamerde
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3/20/2016 4:32:57 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
That's fair, but people equally complain that there are not enough votes on debates. Whether you agree with it or not, there are people who are deterred from voting due to the zealousness with which votes are reported and removed. So if you want to keep those standards high, by all means do so, but people need to also stop making threads lamenting the lack of voting.
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Maikuru
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3/20/2016 4:38:12 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 4:32:57 PM, lamerde wrote:
That's fair, but people equally complain that there are not enough votes on debates. Whether you agree with it or not, there are people who are deterred from voting due to the zealousness with which votes are reported and removed. So if you want to keep those standards high, by all means do so, but people need to also stop making threads lamenting the lack of voting.

What's your ideal voting/vote modding situation on DDO?
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lamerde
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3/20/2016 4:43:09 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 4:38:12 PM, Maikuru wrote:
At 3/20/2016 4:32:57 PM, lamerde wrote:
That's fair, but people equally complain that there are not enough votes on debates. Whether you agree with it or not, there are people who are deterred from voting due to the zealousness with which votes are reported and removed. So if you want to keep those standards high, by all means do so, but people need to also stop making threads lamenting the lack of voting.

What's your ideal voting/vote modding situation on DDO?

Whatever it was before was fine. Some people went out of their ways to write long RFDs in the comment section and that's fine, but I don't see why it has to be the norm, especially not for every debate. I haven't had voting privileges in over a year, but last time I checked, there weren't that many characters in the RFD space to begin with. It seems like the voting standards now would mean no RFD fits in that space.

I personally am not motivated to attempt to get my voting privileges back. I've done the range of votes - from votes that fit in the RFD character space to votes that I placed over several comments in the debate. The latter is time consuming and not every debate is worth that.
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Calling someone a bitch multiple times while claiming you're taking the high road is an art form, I suppose: http://www.debate.org...
Raisor
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3/20/2016 4:53:41 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
OP makes a good point, but I don think standards ought to consider the practicality of meeting the standard for every debate and the time burden imposed on the judge.
Maikuru
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3/20/2016 5:03:09 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 4:43:09 PM, lamerde wrote:
At 3/20/2016 4:38:12 PM, Maikuru wrote:
At 3/20/2016 4:32:57 PM, lamerde wrote:
That's fair, but people equally complain that there are not enough votes on debates. Whether you agree with it or not, there are people who are deterred from voting due to the zealousness with which votes are reported and removed. So if you want to keep those standards high, by all means do so, but people need to also stop making threads lamenting the lack of voting.

What's your ideal voting/vote modding situation on DDO?

Whatever it was before was fine. Some people went out of their ways to write long RFDs in the comment section and that's fine, but I don't see why it has to be the norm, especially not for every debate. I haven't had voting privileges in over a year, but last time I checked, there weren't that many characters in the RFD space to begin with. It seems like the voting standards now would mean no RFD fits in that space.

I personally am not motivated to attempt to get my voting privileges back. I've done the range of votes - from votes that fit in the RFD character space to votes that I placed over several comments in the debate. The latter is time consuming and not every debate is worth that.

I think the RFD limit now is 1,000 characters, but I could be wrong. I refuse to make my RFD's any longer than that because that's what the box is there for. I haven't had any vote issues yet, though I also haven't voted in some time, so who knows.
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lamerde
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3/20/2016 5:34:53 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 5:03:09 PM, Maikuru wrote:

I think the RFD limit now is 1,000 characters, but I could be wrong. I refuse to make my RFD's any longer than that because that's what the box is there for. I haven't had any vote issues yet, though I also haven't voted in some time, so who knows.

Out of curiosity I went through my recent votes.

Some are like this: http://www.debate.org...

And some were in the comments, with one of them taking me 4 hours to do: http://www.debate.org...

I think both types of votes are fine, though I'm sure the first one would be seen as an issue now. It's just not that serious for me.

I think it's fine to encourage "better voting" and all that, but the removal of votes is overzealous. Remember when Drafterman had one of his votes removed? I mean, really... you have a group of people who are intrinsically motivated to provide quality to the site being, as Hoppi put it, micromanaged into doing something they're not paid to do.

If debaters have a problem with that and want to report votes, they are free to do so. But then they shouldn't complain that people are demotivated from voting. And they shouldn't pretend vote moderation has nothing to do with demotivating people to vote when I'm telling them it's demotivated me, and others have said the same.
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Calling someone a bitch multiple times while claiming you're taking the high road is an art form, I suppose: http://www.debate.org...
Maikuru
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3/20/2016 5:47:35 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 5:34:53 PM, lamerde wrote:
At 3/20/2016 5:03:09 PM, Maikuru wrote:

I think the RFD limit now is 1,000 characters, but I could be wrong. I refuse to make my RFD's any longer than that because that's what the box is there for. I haven't had any vote issues yet, though I also haven't voted in some time, so who knows.

Out of curiosity I went through my recent votes.

Some are like this: http://www.debate.org...

And some were in the comments, with one of them taking me 4 hours to do: http://www.debate.org...

I think both types of votes are fine, though I'm sure the first one would be seen as an issue now. It's just not that serious for me.

I think it's fine to encourage "better voting" and all that, but the removal of votes is overzealous. Remember when Drafterman had one of his votes removed? I mean, really... you have a group of people who are intrinsically motivated to provide quality to the site being, as Hoppi put it, micromanaged into doing something they're not paid to do.

If debaters have a problem with that and want to report votes, they are free to do so. But then they shouldn't complain that people are demotivated from voting. And they shouldn't pretend vote moderation has nothing to do with demotivating people to vote when I'm telling them it's demotivated me, and others have said the same.

I think the debaters and the vote mods are in a tough situation. We can all agree that some votes are terrible and need to be removed (we used to handle them through counter-voting). At the same time, voting has almost become a spectacle, with people posting RFD's as threads because they are so long lol. This opens them up to all sorts of comments and criticisms and who needs all that? If we were still debating, we'd certainly want votes on our debates, but we'd also want votes to be accurate and fair.
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lamerde
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3/20/2016 6:00:19 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 5:47:35 PM, Maikuru wrote:

I think the debaters and the vote mods are in a tough situation. We can all agree that some votes are terrible and need to be removed (we used to handle them through counter-voting).

Sure... and then there are votes like the one I posted above that no one seemed to have a problem with back then but if I tried that now, I'd be getting reported/reprimanded. There seems to be this false dichotomy of all votes are either terrible and deserved to be removed, or they are in-depth and posted in the comment section, with quotations from the debate and a step-by-step analysis. There's also a middle ground, which I think a lot of the ire stems from.

At the same time, voting has almost become a spectacle, with people posting RFD's as threads because they are so long lol. This opens them up to all sorts of comments and criticisms and who needs all that? If we were still debating, we'd certainly want votes on our debates, but we'd also want votes to be accurate and fair.

Do accuracy and fairness depend on being a long, point-by-point deconstruction of the debate?
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Calling someone a bitch multiple times while claiming you're taking the high road is an art form, I suppose: http://www.debate.org...
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
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3/20/2016 6:43:40 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
@ Tej - this is a great post. It's something I tell a lot of people too. Everytime someone makes a thread complaining, they should be linked to this post.

@ Tulle - I think the first vote you linked should be sufficient under the current standards considering what the debate was like (I skimmed it). All votes don't have to be long and detailed - as long as you explain the key points, consider all major arguments and explain who won, you're fine and if you can do that within the 1000 character block, more power to you. Most people tend to not be able fit everything they want to say in 1000 characters so ignore the limit and post it in the forums. From personal experience, those long, detailed votes have the most useful to me in terms of feedback. But if a voter doesn't have time for that, it seems perfectly fine to condense your vote while still going over the major points.
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
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3/20/2016 6:45:18 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 5:03:09 PM, Maikuru wrote:

I think the RFD limit now is 1,000 characters, but I could be wrong. I refuse to make my RFD's any longer than that because that's what the box is there for. I haven't had any vote issues yet, though I also haven't voted in some time, so who knows.

The box is arbitrary though. Before, it used to be five-hundred characters, now it's a thousand. If Juggle were active, we could just as easily petition them to increase the maximum limit to ten-thousand so that everyone (with rare exceptions) can fit their votes into those boxes.
Blade-of-Truth
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3/20/2016 7:39:44 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 4:43:09 PM, lamerde wrote:
At 3/20/2016 4:38:12 PM, Maikuru wrote:
At 3/20/2016 4:32:57 PM, lamerde wrote:
That's fair, but people equally complain that there are not enough votes on debates. Whether you agree with it or not, there are people who are deterred from voting due to the zealousness with which votes are reported and removed. So if you want to keep those standards high, by all means do so, but people need to also stop making threads lamenting the lack of voting.

What's your ideal voting/vote modding situation on DDO?

Whatever it was before was fine. Some people went out of their ways to write long RFDs in the comment section and that's fine, but I don't see why it has to be the norm, especially not for every debate. I haven't had voting privileges in over a year, but last time I checked, there weren't that many characters in the RFD space to begin with. It seems like the voting standards now would mean no RFD fits in that space.

I vote all the time and 95% of the votes I leave fit in the RFD box perfectly. This is why I pay no attention to people who claim they can't fit their votes in - it's a personal problem, not a moderation one.

I personally am not motivated to attempt to get my voting privileges back. I've done the range of votes - from votes that fit in the RFD character space to votes that I placed over several comments in the debate. The latter is time consuming and not every debate is worth that.
Debate.org Deputy Vote Moderator
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DDO Voting Guide: http://www.debate.org...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Hoppi
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3/20/2016 7:58:57 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 3:35:35 PM, tejretics wrote:
Voting has become a major, talked-about issue on Debate.org. Currently, it"s a hot topic and many people are proposing varying changes, some of which I agree with, some of which I don"t. In this post, I"m going be focusing on a generic mistake made by people with proposals I disagree with ("mistake" might be too strong a word, since I do not believe I am objectively correct about the issue, nor that "objective correctness" on such an opinion-driven issue exists). For example, many people claim that voting standards/strictness should be reduced, which is a *defensible* position, although one I heartily disagree with. But the problem is an error they make regarding why voting and voting standards exist. They say "voters frequently get their voting privileges removed which is unfair." Similarly, I can find **tens** of threads with people complaining about their voting privileges getting removed.

I'm the person who most recently complained about this, and it's NOT because I think it's unfair. It's because I think it's damaging to the site. It may have good aspects too, but I wanted the bad aspects to be recognized.

Here"s the problem with any such claim.

Voting exists for the debaters, NOT the voters.

The reason **anyone** votes, or should vote, is as a service to the debaters. Many debaters debate for a clear outcome, and the vote gives that outcome, along with substantive reasoning and feedback. Debate is a fun activity, and this site"s whole interface is made for debate of all kinds. But note that the voter should vote **for the debaters" sake, not their own.** Voting standards should not be crafted in a way to appeal to the voters. They should be crafted for the debaters and the debaters only. Voters, think if you were a debater, and tell me what kinds of votes you would like. That is the kind of vote that should be allowed.

When voters complain about losing their privileges, it annoys me to no extent. They are unhappy with it. But why should they be unhappy with losing them? They are unable to do a service because they do it **badly.*

This is what annoys ME though. Yes, people shouldn't votebomb, they should read the debate and vote for what's in the debate. Once those basic requirements are met, it should be up to them how they vote, how much they write, what they pay attention to.

There should be NO talk of good or bad voting in terms of moderation. It should just be valid or invalid.

It"s like an employee who is not even paid getting angry at getting fired for doing his job badly. The voting standards haven"t even changed: they have been clearly outlined, and you can see Bluesteel"s Voting Guide and Bsh1"s Guide to Voting Using the 7-Point System for reference regarding the same. I dislike the term "voting privileges." Voting is neither a right nor a privilege. It is a *service.* There can be incentives for doing that service. Some judges might even find it fun to vote. But they should fundamentally do it as a service to debaters.

One such incentive, it seems, is doing much more negative impact, i.e., the Voting Leaderboard. The Voting Leaderboard is essentially -- for those who are unaware -- a list of the most prolific voters on the site. It is ranked by number of votes. People often vote to get higher in that, and it was created as an incentive to increase vote count. Sadly, it is creating many more terrible votes - bad RFD"s that are sufficient nonetheless. (This is not a complaint about standards: the standards currently are ideal, in my opinion, and it is impossible to craft absolutely perfect standards avoiding all bad votes.) But the Voting Leaderboard has become something by which people cast annoying votes with no feedback just for getting a higher rank. Vote quantity isn"t important as long as there"s one vote, it"s fine. One good vote is easily better than twenty-one bad ones. Because bad votes don"t matter at all, because they shouldn"t decide an outcome. An outcome should be decided by capable judges, not by bad ones.

===

Quite simply, voting standards **should not** have the voters in mind. They should have vote quality first, and vote quantity second, in mind.

No, they should have minimum standards in mind, and those standards should be clear. Bluestewl went overboard. Remember that most debates are very simple. Debates that people put hours into deserve more thought out rfds maybe, but most debates aren't like that
tejretics
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3/21/2016 2:35:35 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
@lamerde

While I understand that concern, I think lessening the standards isn't the way to go, because I don't think it is the *standards* that deter people so much as the social stigma associated with not putting up a long vote, or an incorrect perception of the standards. The standards have basically been the same since bluesteel was vote moderator; while number of reports has something to do with it, more people have started putting up very long votes, and people think that's the standard.

Also, both your linked votes would have qualified under current standards, including the one you represented as one that wouldn't.
"Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe." - Frederick Douglass
tejretics
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3/21/2016 2:36:50 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
@Hoppi

I fully disagree with "minimum standards." Most debaters want good votes on their debates. Moderation gives them that. Like I said, standards should be crafted for the debaters, so there should be two primary considerations: vote quality and vote quantity.
"Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe." - Frederick Douglass
lamerde
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3/21/2016 3:02:22 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/20/2016 6:43:40 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:

@ Tulle - I think the first vote you linked should be sufficient under the current standards considering what the debate was like (I skimmed it). All votes don't have to be long and detailed - as long as you explain the key points, consider all major arguments and explain who won, you're fine and if you can do that within the 1000 character block, more power to you. Most people tend to not be able fit everything they want to say in 1000 characters so ignore the limit and post it in the forums. From personal experience, those long, detailed votes have the most useful to me in terms of feedback. But if a voter doesn't have time for that, it seems perfectly fine to condense your vote while still going over the major points.

At 3/21/2016 2:35:35 AM, tejretics wrote:
@lamerde

While I understand that concern, I think lessening the standards isn't the way to go, because I don't think it is the *standards* that deter people so much as the social stigma associated with not putting up a long vote, or an incorrect perception of the standards. The standards have basically been the same since bluesteel was vote moderator; while number of reports has something to do with it, more people have started putting up very long votes, and people think that's the standard.

Also, both your linked votes would have qualified under current standards, including the one you represented as one that wouldn't.

Ah I see. Both of you make fair points and it's true that my perception is that people have to give long, detailed RFDs now (I acknowledge that this could be a misperception). I guess my issue is I'm seeing votes that I personally don't see a problem with get reported and removed.

Maybe I chose a bad example but I'm sure there are other votes I've cast that I think are "good enough" that aren't good enough now. Maybe it's just personal differences between being "good" and "good enough."
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Calling someone a bitch multiple times while claiming you're taking the high road is an art form, I suppose: http://www.debate.org...
Hoppi
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3/21/2016 11:30:29 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/21/2016 2:36:50 AM, tejretics wrote:
@Hoppi

I fully disagree with "minimum standards." Most debaters want good votes on their debates. Moderation gives them that. Like I said, standards should be crafted for the debaters, so there should be two primary considerations: vote quality and vote quantity.

I don't understand this. How can you disagree with minimum standards? That's what vote moderation does - in the theory anyway - the disagreement is only about where those minimum standards should be set. Do you have some other understanding of their role?
tejretics
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3/21/2016 11:33:32 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/21/2016 11:30:29 AM, Hoppi wrote:
At 3/21/2016 2:36:50 AM, tejretics wrote:
@Hoppi

I fully disagree with "minimum standards." Most debaters want good votes on their debates. Moderation gives them that. Like I said, standards should be crafted for the debaters, so there should be two primary considerations: vote quality and vote quantity.

I don't understand this. How can you disagree with minimum standards? That's what vote moderation does - in the theory anyway - the disagreement is only about where those minimum standards should be set. Do you have some other understanding of their role?

I'm sorry, I misinterpreted your post. I thought "minimum standards" was "minimal standards."
"Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe." - Frederick Douglass