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RFD - TUF vs Lannan - Euthanasia

FourTrouble
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12/7/2015 12:03:08 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
This RFD is for this debate: http://www.debate.org...

The resolution asks whether the United States federal government should legalize euthanasia. Since it's a normative topic, the burdens of persuasion are equal on both sides. Interestingly, TUF defines euthanasia more broadly and narrowly than usual, broadly in that it encompasses the act of "allowing to die, as by withholding extreme medical measures," and narrowly in that it only refers to those with an "incurable disease" (pain isn't strictly required). This means arguments that distinguish "a right to refuse care" from "euthanasia" aren't available to Con. From my perspective, that immediately puts Con at a huge disadvantage, as it takes away a critical piece of the case against euthanasia. On the other hand, TUF also notes that he'll be defending both voluntary and involuntary euthanasia, and involuntary euthanasia is much more difficult to defend.

Pro's case

Pro focuses on saving medical resources that would otherwise be used on incurable diseases, minimizing suffering, regulations that limit abuse, and some vague point about passive euthanasia. The first two points form the core of Pro's case, the idea being that the benefits of euthanasia outweigh the risks. These risks are mitigated by regulations, though Pro fails to offer much evidence these regulations will actually eliminate the risks. His final point on passive euthanasia isn't developed; whatever its impact isn't clear enough for me to give any weight.

Con's responses are mostly incoherent or irrelevant. On "resource delegation," Con says there's a distinction between euthanasia and assisted suicide. But that distinction is virtually meaningless given the accepted definition of euthanasia -- to the extent euthanasia encompasses removing medical care to let someone die, it must encompass some forms of assisted suicide, too. The distinction is also irrelevant because Pro's argument is about cost savings, cost savings that come from not having to provide medical care. So the cost savings may result through assisted suicide or euthanasia.

On suffering, Con says laws against euthanasia aren't intended to cause suffering. But that misses the point of Pro's argument. The issue is whether euthanasia will, in fact, decrease the amount of suffering in the world. Failing to take that issue up, Con misses an opportunity to tease out some of the implications of Pro's argument. For instance, Con could have argued that Pro's suffering argument lacks any limiting principle, so it would inevitably lead to the expansion of euthanasia to anyone who suffers or experiences pain, as long as the consequences outweigh the costs. The impact is not only harm to rights as there's more involuntary euthanasia but also greater potential for abuse.

But Con doesn't argue any of this. That leaves Con stuck with the point that euthanasia will decrease suffering, though it's still unclear how much suffering. But it's still a point that has significant impact on the resolution. Con thus banks his position on the hope that the risks of abuse and harms to individual rights will outweigh this decrease in suffering. Along with this decrease in suffering, I'm buying that euthanasia will decrease medical costs on patients with incurable diseases.

Con's case

In stark contrast to Pro's consequentialism, Con frames his case under a libertarian framework. Con's explanation is vague and even bizarre at times, but the overall picture I'm getting is that certain rights have so much significance that they should never be violated, no matter the consequences of upholding them.Since Con uses the word "libertarian," I assume he's referring to autonomy rights and rights to life. This framework is inherently incompatible with involuntary euthanasia. But at the same time, it opens room to advocate for voluntary euthanasia. After all, the strongest argument for voluntary euthanasia or assisted suicide is the interest in autonomy that underlies libertarian thinking. That said, this isn't really picked up on or argued by Pro, so it's not hurting Con as much as it potentially could have.

Next, Con asserts that legalizing euthanasia will lead to non-consensual euthanasia. But this isn't compelling because Pro has already said he supports involuntary euthanasia except when the person paying life support is willing to keep paying for it. Pro says the consequences are ultimately better in a world where we euthanize, even when there's no consent, as long as we decrease suffering and get cost savings from it. Con assumes this is a bad thing, and it certainly is bad under a libertarian framework, but there's little reasoning offered to support a right to life or right to autonomy over Pro's cost savings and decrease in suffering. I'm not told how to weigh these points or competing frameworks.

Con also says that self-determination advocates against euthanasia, because anyone in their right mind wouldn't want to die. But that, too, just begs the question. Con also makes some sort of argument about weighing the individual's value to the community vs the individual's own desires to die, suggesting value to the community always outweighs. This treads into utilitarian territory, even citing Bentham, but it offers very little elaboration or clarity or justification. I'm told that I should prefer impacts on the community over individuals but not told why. This is actually harmful to Con's position, since it legitimizes Pro's consequentialist framework, legitimizes Pro's cost saving argument, since that's a community impact. Meanwhile, it's unclear what Con's actual impacts are.

That said, Pro's response isn't much better than Con's. Pro says that Belgium and the Netherlands are distinguishable from the United States, because they have different laws, ethics, and morals. But I'm not finding that distinction compelling, since the issue at stake is the risks of abuse/murder, and there's nothing about the United States that makes murder less likely. Or at least Pro didn't give me any reason to believe murder is less likely in the United States. In fact, murder might be more likely, since there seems to be a lot more killers/murders in the US than Belgium. Pro's other points aren't much better, though my sense is that part of Pro's problems stem from the lack of clarity and coherence in Con's arguments themselves.

Conclusion

This debate is extremely difficult to decide. There's benefits and costs to euthanasia. But these benefits and costs aren't developed as clearly as they could and should have been. Worse, neither side weighs these competing costs or benefits, or to the extent they weigh them, it's mostly implied (again, unclear). In fact, most of the important reasoning in the debate is implied rather than explicit. And that's a recurring problem for both debaters. Moreover, neither side discusses the conflicting frameworks. To the extent I adopt a libertarian framework, Pro loses immediately. But I'm not given any clear reason to adopt that framework. So I can't resolve the debate by choosing a framework because neither side gives me a reason to prefer their worldview or framework.

I saw that YYW voted a tie. I'm inclined to do the same, as neither side truly convinced (note: this seems to be the case too often lately). That said, I know this is part of a tournament, so you need the issue decided. That's one of the problems with equal burdens. Anyway, forced as I am to apply my own weighing mechanism, I'm voting TUF, for three reasons. First, Con cites Bentham, so I'm inclined to apply a consequentialist framework rather than a libertarian one. Second, Con's rebuttal was less responsive than Pro's rebuttal, as Con didn't seem to understand Pro's arguments. Finally, Pro's impacts were near certainties whereas Con's risks weren't.
YYW
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12/7/2015 1:24:30 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
Note:

There is language in this RFD that may prompt someone to report it. That would be an exercise in futility, for obvious reasons. Namely, the vote is obviously sufficient (despite its incorrect decision), and must, per force, stand.

If for whatever reason the vote is removed, or if the author of this vote (FT) receives any notification from any vote moderator that the vote will be removed (however unlikely), I am stating my intent here to intervene to prevent that.
Tsar of DDO
TUF
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12/7/2015 1:56:06 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
As I said with YYW, I greatly appreciate you taking the time to read the debate in it's entirety. You both seem to understand things differently and present arguments objectively in a way that makes sense out of both debaters positions. It is undoubtedly clear that you took time out of your probably busy day to help vote on this tournament, and for that I thank you.

I definitely am feeling like I could have done better in this debate, and that my arguments were hindered due to my increasing frustration with the direction the debate went. I will definitely be taking both you and YYW's advice though and do my best to implement it in future debates. Thanks again FourTrouble.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
airmax1227
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12/7/2015 9:56:05 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
None of the following is necessary and it's really inappropriate. Anyone who feels it is necessary to report a vote is welcome to do so. I feel this type of thing is particularly problematic, both this comment and the one in the debate were reported, and to make clear that this isn't appropriate and why, I feel it is necessary to address this directly.

At 12/7/2015 1:24:30 AM, YYW wrote:
Note:

There is language in this RFD that may prompt someone to report it.

They would be free to do so, and should feel free to do so.

That would be an exercise in futility, for obvious reasons.

Those obvious reasons being that, at a glance (I admit I haven't read the vote thoroughly and I certainly haven't reviewed it in any official way) it appears more than sufficient to pass vote moderation standards.

Namely, the vote is obviously sufficient (despite its incorrect decision), and must, per force, stand.

The vote will likely stand because it likely passes the sites vote moderation standards (which I'm saying having only skimmed it and the vote having not been reviewed), though if it does happen to not pass vote moderation, something which seems very unlikely (which again makes your post unnecessary), it will be removed regardless of whatever force you believe you can exert in these matters.

If for whatever reason the vote is removed, or if the author of this vote (FT) receives any notification from any vote moderator that the vote will be removed (however unlikely)

The vote will most likely not be removed (which you seem to recognize), making your post unnecessary, but it is nonetheless problematic as it potentially discourages members from reporting a vote, which they have every right to do and should at no point ever feel like they have any reason to feel intimidated (or for any other reason discouraged) for doing so.

I am stating my intent here to intervene to prevent that.

You have absolutely no ability to prevent such a thing if it were to occur. At most, you can make comments like you have that may discourage members from exercising their right to report a vote, and that has prompted this response.

What you do have the ability to do apparently, whether it's intended in this case or not, is to discourage members (via these comments) who might potentially report the vote, and that is entirely inappropriate.

Your comments in the debate itself are similarly inappropriate as they seem to imply (TUF: "Has someone reported it?", YYW: "Idk... but I'll bet someone might have without my comment.") that you are trying to prevent the vote from being reported. It is unnecessary, and again, inappropriate for you to do this. Vote moderation is more than capable of determining whether the vote meets the sites standards or not, and can do so without the risk of having a potential vote reporter think there is some consequence for them reporting a vote, or thinking for some reason that they shouldn't report it, even if they feel it's insufficient. This may not have been your intent, but as your comment above seems to imply, making any comments that are intended to discourage a member from reporting a vote is inappropriate and unnecessary.

Any member who wishes to report the vote may do so without the risk of any consequence whatsoever. If such a thing does occur, the vote will be reviewed, and if deemed to be insufficient, it will be removed.

The vote hasn't been reported the last time I checked, but your comments were for the reasons given above. This vote doesn't appear to be at any risk of being removed, making your comments entirely unnecessary, but more importantly, they are inappropriate for the reasons stated above. A member is entirely free to report any vote that they like, and vote moderation will determine if that vote is sufficient or not. If you don't have faith in vote moderation to determine the validity of votes, then that is a separate discussion that can take place, but again, making comments that are specifically intended to discourage members from reporting votes is not appropriate.
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TUF
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12/7/2015 10:34:53 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
I am still kind of at a loss at the language YYW is referring to that could be construed to be reportable. Having read the entire RFD a few times I am not seeing what he is referring to specifically.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
TUF
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12/7/2015 10:37:11 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
I didn't report the comment though, and didn't really think too much of it. I didn't think the comment was as big a deal as the mod seems to think it is lol.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
airmax1227
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12/7/2015 11:13:42 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 10:37:11 AM, TUF wrote:
I didn't report the comment though, and didn't really think too much of it. I didn't think the comment was as big a deal as the mod seems to think it is lol.

This is the comment on the debate:

"Anyone inclined to report FT's RFD should generally reconsider, among other things, their choices with respect to voting on the site, and their life choices more generally. To suggest that FT's vote would be insufficient to remain, or that it should be removed for any other reason, would, without question, reflect the suggester's stupidity."

This type of thing, and the post above, can only discourage people from reporting a vote if they think someone is going to give them a hard time about it...what other purpose could such a comment have but to discourage a certain action? As much was admitted to here... It's not appropriate for a member to discourage someone from reporting a vote in such a way, nor does it serve any meaningful purpose (if the assumption is that vote moderation is incompetent, then such an action can be justified to prevent the vote from being reviewed, but it would remain inappropriate).

Voter intimidation (and vote reporter intimidation in this case - honestly something I never thought I'd actually see) is something I'm more cognizant of, and I want to be clear that it's inappropriate.

It's simple enough to say "I think FTs vote is thorough and sufficient to meet site standards even if I disagree with his conclusions" rather than something like the above, which was as YYW pointed out, intended to discourage people from reporting the vote. Since there is no reason for that, and it is inappropriate as I said above, I wanted to make that clear. It might seem rather benign, but it's problematic and has broader repercussions if not addressed.
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TUF
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12/7/2015 12:12:29 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 11:13:42 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
At 12/7/2015 10:37:11 AM, TUF wrote:
I didn't report the comment though, and didn't really think too much of it. I didn't think the comment was as big a deal as the mod seems to think it is lol.

This is the comment on the debate:

"Anyone inclined to report FT's RFD should generally reconsider, among other things, their choices with respect to voting on the site, and their life choices more generally. To suggest that FT's vote would be insufficient to remain, or that it should be removed for any other reason, would, without question, reflect the suggester's stupidity."

This type of thing, and the post above, can only discourage people from reporting a vote if they think someone is going to give them a hard time about it...what other purpose could such a comment have but to discourage a certain action? As much was admitted to here... It's not appropriate for a member to discourage someone from reporting a vote in such a way, nor does it serve any meaningful purpose (if the assumption is that vote moderation is incompetent, then such an action can be justified to prevent the vote from being reviewed, but it would remain inappropriate).

Voter intimidation (and vote reporter intimidation in this case - honestly something I never thought I'd actually see) is something I'm more cognizant of, and I want to be clear that it's inappropriate.

It's simple enough to say "I think FTs vote is thorough and sufficient to meet site standards even if I disagree with his conclusions" rather than something like the above, which was as YYW pointed out, intended to discourage people from reporting the vote. Since there is no reason for that, and it is inappropriate as I said above, I wanted to make that clear. It might seem rather benign, but it's problematic and has broader repercussions if not addressed.

Oh it's not that I disagree with you or anything. I was more just expressing my surprise at your reaction towards it. In the previous post and in this one you repeated the same thing so many times that it appears slightly more serious than I perceived it being. I am not entirely sure how convinced or scared someone might be to report a vote based on his comment alone because as you said, he is rather powerless in the matter. I did take slight issue with him publicly doubting FTs decision though and would have felt the same if FT had voted for lannan and YYW has said the same thing. Presupposing there is an objective way to read and judge a vote is not accurate in my opinion nor beneficial towards getting votes on a debate.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
YYW
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12/7/2015 1:41:45 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 9:56:05 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
None of the following is necessary and it's really inappropriate.

I disagree, but I recognize that this is your opinion.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/7/2015 1:53:24 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 12:12:29 PM, TUF wrote:
Oh it's not that I disagree with you or anything. I was more just expressing my surprise at your reaction towards it. In the previous post and in this one you repeated the same thing so many times that it appears slightly more serious than I perceived it being.

The issue is that Max, being a vote moderator, doesn't want the "authority" of vote moderators coming under attack. While I know, for example, that Max knows that the vote is sufficient, there is language in the debate which could prompt someone to report it, and might incline some to be amenable to hearing that report.

The report would discuss, if made, the extent to which FT's vote was influenced by my vote. Even though FT's vote is incorrect (the debate was a tie), the point is that it passes the standard for what makes a vote "sufficient."

The thing is that I have seen some vote moderators (not Max, because he wrote the standard, but others) misapply the standard in close-call cases. I've seen it even happen (once) on one of my debates, and I can anticipate the possibility of it happening here. To the extent that it does, the purpose of my post and comment was twofold:

1. to dissuade people from making stupid reports, and
2. to indicate that removing this vote will result in my public criticism of that decision.

And indeed, this had exactly the desired effect. Max has already said that the vote will stand, so all's well and good.

I am not entirely sure how convinced or scared someone might be to report a vote based on his comment alone because as you said, he is rather powerless in the matter.

Hardly.

I did take slight issue with him publicly doubting FTs decision though and would have felt the same if FT had voted for lannan and YYW has said the same thing.

FT's vote is wrong, and if he gave the win to Lannan I would have said the same thing, because that also would have been wrong.

Presupposing there is an objective way to read and judge a vote is not accurate in my opinion nor beneficial towards getting votes on a debate.

This is incorrect, for a host of reasons I've explained in other posts. Sound judging is, of necessity, an objective undertaking. There are judges who make evaluations subjectively, and they are bad judges.

What matters, in evaluating something objectively, is the relative strength of, and interaction between arguments. So, the argument's structure and substance are what matters, and any judges ideas about, for example, whether the perspective being advocated for is valid or not, is totally irrelevant. That's the difference.

To suggest that judging is not objective is nonsense, for the reason that if it were not objective, then the sole criterion for winning would be your argument's congruence with any particular judge's values and ideas about the world -which would, without limitation, defeat the purpose of debate entirely.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/7/2015 2:07:03 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 11:13:42 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
At 12/7/2015 10:37:11 AM, TUF wrote:
I didn't report the comment though, and didn't really think too much of it. I didn't think the comment was as big a deal as the mod seems to think it is lol.

This is the comment on the debate:

"Anyone inclined to report FT's RFD should generally reconsider, among other things, their choices with respect to voting on the site, and their life choices more generally. To suggest that FT's vote would be insufficient to remain, or that it should be removed for any other reason, would, without question, reflect the suggester's stupidity."

This type of thing, and the post above, can only discourage people from reporting a vote if they think someone is going to give them a hard time about it...what other purpose could such a comment have but to discourage a certain action?

Two purposes:

1. To discourage the making of idiotic reports; and
2. To discourage whiteflame from entertaining idiotic reports.

I am certainly aware that the vote is good enough to stand, as are you. But there have been times where "reasons for removal" of a debate have nothing to do with the objective standard we both agree ought to remain in place, and far more to do with the subjective content of an RFD --meaning that the standard was misapplied.

We have been through this before, and the purpose of my post was to "preempt" that kind of thing, which it clearly did, as is evidenced by (a) the fact that you responded to what I wrote; (b) the fact that you agree with my assessment of the vote's sufficiency; and (c) the fact that now there will be no "reports" filed, because of the previous two reasons (unless a person is just really dumb).

As much was admitted to here... It's not appropriate for a member to discourage someone from reporting a vote in such a way, nor does it serve any meaningful purpose (if the assumption is that vote moderation is incompetent, then such an action can be justified to prevent the vote from being reviewed, but it would remain inappropriate).

Of course it is appropriate for members to openly discuss how votes are moderated, and any suggestion to the contrary is irrational, and counter to the purpose and function of voting moderation. Voting moderation undertakes the preservation of voting integrity, and that implies that the moderation process itself is something that the general members of the public can "weigh in" on --and many (including myself) have, do, will, and will continue to in the future, to the extent that they (or I, in this instance) think is needed.

IF, similarly, you agree that my assessment of the vote is valid (and you clearly do, as you have stated) then you also must agree that no harm were done, because any report would be necessarily in vain, as the vote passes.

Voter intimidation (and vote reporter intimidation in this case - honestly something I never thought I'd actually see) is something I'm more cognizant of, and I want to be clear that it's inappropriate.

Voter intimidation is "using threats or whatever else could incite fear in a voter to dissuade them from voting." This is not voter intimidation, as you clearly recognize. And it's absolutely inapropriate for people to weigh in on how moderation works, contrary to what you suggest, to maintain the integrity of the process, as I've described above.

It's simple enough to say "I think FTs vote is thorough and sufficient to meet site standards even if I disagree with his conclusions" rather than something like the above, which was as YYW pointed out, intended to discourage people from reporting the vote.

This is an unpersuasive argument. Vote reports are anonymous, meaning that they are not subject to public scrutiny, meaning that no individual person could be publicly castigated for reporting a vote, meaning that the harm implicitly reflected in your statement above (that people will just be so discouraged from reporting votes that they won't report them) is just not something I can take seriously.

Of course people will "think twice" about reporting a vote that has been preemptively validated. That was the entire point of my post, and comment. But they're still certainly free to file a (meritless) report.

Since there is no reason for that, and it is inappropriate as I said above, I wanted to make that clear. It might seem rather benign, but it's problematic and has broader repercussions if not addressed.

I disagree entirely, and take issue with your suggestion, as I have said above, several times now, that what I said is "problematic." The community has as much right to have a say with regard to what happens with vote moderation as the debaters themselves do, and any suggestion otherwise comes at the expense of vote moderation's integrity in and of itself.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/7/2015 2:08:02 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 10:34:53 AM, TUF wrote:
I am still kind of at a loss at the language YYW is referring to that could be construed to be reportable. Having read the entire RFD a few times I am not seeing what he is referring to specifically.

It is encouraging, btw. that you're "at a loss" as to why the debate might be reportable. I agree that no reasonable person would report it. However, not all people are reasonable.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/7/2015 2:18:35 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 9:56:05 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
Namely, the vote is obviously sufficient (despite its incorrect decision), and must, per force, stand.

The vote will likely stand because it likely passes the sites vote moderation standards (which I'm saying having only skimmed it and the vote having not been reviewed), though if it does happen to not pass vote moderation, something which seems very unlikely (which again makes your post unnecessary), it will be removed regardless of whatever force you believe you can exert in these matters.

Per force means "of necessity."

lol
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TUF
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12/7/2015 4:07:58 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
YYW, your comment mentioned reporting the vote, not the debate. That may be where there is some confusion. At least that"s how airmax and I both interpreted it.
As far as the standard of voting: I agree with you to an extent. The extent being that there are what a majority of users consider bad, and good. The continued debate about what qualifies a "good" vote is proof itself of subjectivity on the issue. What I specifically don"t agree with is that your interpretation of a debate is the only interpretation of the winner/loser. Having read FT"s response, I see a lot of differences in the RFD"s (I don"t know that I would necessarily say that his vote was influenced by yours, just that it was clear that he read it).
I could be wrong (feel free to correct me if so), but from my interpretation of what you were saying, it seems as if you think that your decision specifically is the only real plausible outcome of the debate. Your statement saying that FT"s decision was "wrong" but sufficient suggests that there is no possible way the debate could be anything other than a tie and that the decision is something that could, and should be unanimously be decided if voters are being fair. And while I was grateful for your intensive feedback of the debate, I 100% dis-agree that there is only one objective winner to a debate. While the debate was sloppy in many areas from both debaters, a person could still weigh the value of the arguments outside of the realm personal bias. We may have to agree to dis-agree here, or it may just be that I have mis-understood the majority of what you have.
I agree for the most part of your response to airmax concerning whether members should have a say in the vote moderation policy. I think Airmax"s reaction to the comment might have been a little intense, even though I can somewhat understand his perception of the comment.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
YYW
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12/7/2015 4:31:23 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 4:07:58 PM, TUF wrote:
YYW, your comment mentioned reporting the vote, not the debate.

Correct.

That may be where there is some confusion. At least that"s how airmax and I both interpreted it.

Reporting the vote is what is at issue.

As far as the standard of voting: I agree with you to an extent. The extent being that there are what a majority of users consider bad, and good. The continued debate about what qualifies a "good" vote is proof itself of subjectivity on the issue.

There is no reasonable argument that says that any "good" vote is subjective. Like, "good" and "subjective" are mutually exclusive qualities with respect to voting.

What I specifically don"t agree with is that your interpretation of a debate is the only interpretation of the winner/loser. Having read FT"s response, I see a lot of differences in the RFD"s (I don"t know that I would necessarily say that his vote was influenced by yours, just that it was clear that he read it).

I agree to the extent that no reasonable person could conclude that FT's vote was unduly influenced my my RFD.

I could be wrong (feel free to correct me if so), but from my interpretation of what you were saying, it seems as if you think that your decision specifically is the only real plausible outcome of the debate.

It is.

Your statement saying that FT"s decision was "wrong" but sufficient suggests that there is no possible way the debate could be anything other than a tie and that the decision is something that could, and should be unanimously be decided if voters are being fair.

Well there are plenty of possible ways that the debate could result in something other than a tie. For example, FT's giving you the win and Lannan the loss. That's a "possible way" that the debate could result in something other than a tie. And that's not what I said, nor is it reasonably implied by what I said.

What I said was "what the debate's outcome" was, not how people will vote. There is a difference. The difference is between "what happened" (a tie) and "what judges are going to say happened" (probably that you won).

And while I was grateful for your intensive feedback of the debate, I 100% dis-agree that there is only one objective winner to a debate.

I didn't say that there was "only one objective winner to a debate." Like, nowhere in what I said will that piece of language or idea be contained, suggested, or alluded to. It's just not what I wrote. What I wrote is that the debate is a tie.

While the debate was sloppy in many areas from both debaters, a person could still weigh the value of the arguments outside of the realm personal bias.

That is to cast an "objective" vote. I'm glad we agree that doing so is possible. That is in direct conflict with your other statements that good votes are subjective.

We may have to agree to dis-agree here, or it may just be that I have mis-understood the majority of what you have.

It is very clear that that's what happened.

I agree for the most part of your response to airmax concerning whether members should have a say in the vote moderation policy. I think Airmax"s reaction to the comment might have been a little intense, even though I can somewhat understand his perception of the comment.

Airmax's reaction to what I wrote was inapropriate, and likely prompted by some members (I am virtually certain I know who did it, too... lol... and I know why they did it, and I don't care because they're so profoundly wrong) expressed, and misguided concern about things that the person who likely reported what I said had with respect to reporting votes.

I mean, what he said was just completely nonsense to the extent that he suggested that (1) it was inapropriate to comment on the potential reporting of votes; (2) that such commentary would have negative consequences; and (3) that what I said/did produced no productive outcome. Max (correctly) said that the vote was sufficient, and that was the point of what I wrote. (A vote can be wrong and sufficient.)

So, that's kind of why when I woke up this morning and saw his response... I just had to respond. It's like "Ok, well, let's explore together each and every reason why what you said is just nonsense." And that's what I did.

And if Max has an issue with people weighing in on vote moderation, then we've got bigger problems. That really just makes me want to, for example, take the time (likely later this month) to offer a very public analysis of precisely what results have been achieved.

The basic stuff that any idiot can do (like, strike obvious vote bombs) is generally handled correctly. But the bigger, more challenging stuff (well, I don't think it's challenging but I've seen it screwed up plenty of times... or almost screwed up plenty of times) such as assessing the sufficiency of any particular vote, or anything like that, is just rife with examples that merit greater scrutiny. (Again, that may become a project of mine later this month.)
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/7/2015 4:42:34 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Correction

Voter intimidation (and vote reporter intimidation in this case - honestly something I never thought I'd actually see) is something I'm more cognizant of, and I want to be clear that it's inappropriate.

Voter intimidation is "using threats or whatever else could incite fear in a voter to dissuade them from voting." This is not voter intimidation, as you clearly recognize. And it's absolutely inapropriate for people NOT to weigh in on how moderation works, contrary to what you suggest, to maintain the integrity of the process, as I've described above.

Elaboration:

The idea is that moderation, by its nature, does not enjoy the benefit of being conducted without scrutiny. While individual people may feel free to report whatever they want, thereby prompting moderation's review of votes, the suggestion that any particular person would be deterred from filing reports in a general sense based on isolated comments with regard to one particular vote that is objectively sufficient defies reason. It's just nonsense.

Similarly, discussion of "rights" of people to "report votes" is misplaced. There was, at no mention in any part of any post that I have made on this subject which would suggest that anyone lacks the "right" to report anything. Anyone is free to file any stupid report they want. The report would nevertheless be stupid, for obvious reasons (well, obvious to me, and apparently obvious to Max too, in light of his assessment that the vote FT cast is sufficient).

Talk of "rights" in that sense is just out of line, therefore, because rights have nothing to do with the issue of "whether the vote should be reported or not." Talk of "rights" involves a person's entitlement to take or refrain from taking a particular action, which is not what's involved here. What's involved here is "whether a particular action SHOULD BE TAKEN" which implies that a person already has the right to do the action, because we wouldn't even be talking about whether taking the action or not was the right thing to do if a person was enjoined from taking it.

(This is a common error whenever anyone criticizes anyone else's speech. People respond to someone else's statements which are in conflict with what the speaker in the first instance said with something to the general effect of "But I have a right to say it, man!" which just totally misses the point, because, again, rights are prior to the issue of whether a particular course of action should be taken.)

But, what Max said here is that, or at least tried to imply, is that I "lack the right" to preempt stupid reports... which I obviously do not, for obvious reasons, which I will be happy to discuss at length with both Max and Whiteflame or anyone else who thinks I'm wrong (because I'm not). This is generally reflected by Max's commentary that what I said was "inapropriate" and the like. I obviously have the right to speak about whatever I want to speak about, especially something that involves the integrity of the voting process. Max is free to disagree about the prudence of doing so, but he certainly would be overreaching to suggest that what I said was a violation of any expressed or implied policy.
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TUF
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12/7/2015 4:57:34 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I am going to back away from the argument on subjectivity vs objectivity of voting. I don't have many problems with your response, and it seems like the majority of the argument is getting caught up on the words.

I'll be keeping an eye on this thread however, for Airmax's response as I particularly find a majority of what was said in response from YYW to be true.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
YYW
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12/7/2015 5:12:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 4:57:34 PM, TUF wrote:
I am going to back away from the argument on subjectivity vs objectivity of voting. I don't have many problems with your response, and it seems like the majority of the argument is getting caught up on the words.

Very good. I think most people, when they come to understand how voting works, generally agree with what I said. It's not controversial, unless people don't understand what voting is all about. (Many don't, and some refuse to.) I am encouraged by this.

I'll be keeping an eye on this thread however, for Airmax's response as I particularly find a majority of what was said in response from YYW to be true.

Right on. I predict that Max will likely produce an amicable response where his tone is less direct than in the first instance of his appearance on the thread. I also predict that he will change his opinions from "this is inapropriate" to "you shouldn't do this." I will, of course, take note of the fact that Max has expressed his views... but where and to the extent that I anticipate the potential for votes to be reported and removed, I'm likely going to intervene in the future.
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FourTrouble
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12/7/2015 5:22:56 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
For the record, my vote was only influenced by YYW's vote to the extent that I saw he voted for a tie. Perhaps I may have been more inclined to give a tie had I not seen YYW's vote. But even before I saw YYW's vote, I wanted to make sure there was a definitive decision in the debate, since it's part of a tournament. And I assure the debaters that I didn't read YYW's RFD until after I voted, as I was curious how my reasoning would compare with his. So the notion that YYW's vote "influenced" mine is a manifestly inaccurate and unfair characterization.
FourTrouble
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12/7/2015 5:28:58 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
In terms of the "appropriateness" of YYW's comment, I don't see a problem with it. Expressing a view about the sufficiency of a vote, or the futility of reporting it, isn't voter intimidation. Nobody is less likely to vote on the debate, or less likely to report a vote they think is problematic, just because YYW thinks the vote is sufficient. Somewhat ironically, this assumes YYW's comments have more power/influence than they actually do.
YYW
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12/7/2015 5:29:18 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 5:22:56 PM, FourTrouble wrote:
For the record, my vote was only influenced by YYW's vote to the extent that I saw he voted for a tie. Perhaps I may have been more inclined to give a tie had I not seen YYW's vote. But even before I saw YYW's vote, I wanted to make sure there was a definitive decision in the debate, since it's part of a tournament. And I assure the debaters that I didn't read YYW's RFD until after I voted, as I was curious how my reasoning would compare with his. So the notion that YYW's vote "influenced" mine is a manifestly inaccurate and unfair characterization.

Of course. But nevertheless I can see that coming up... because bitches be cray'.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/7/2015 5:34:16 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 5:28:58 PM, FourTrouble wrote:
In terms of the "appropriateness" of YYW's comment, I don't see a problem with it. Expressing a view about the sufficiency of a vote, or the futility of reporting it, isn't voter intimidation. Nobody is less likely to vote on the debate, or less likely to report a vote they think is problematic, just because YYW thinks the vote is sufficient. Somewhat ironically, this assumes YYW's comments have more power/influence than they actually do.

The point was to get Max to declare the vote to be what it was, and it clearly achieved the goal, as is evidenced by Max's comments in this thread.
Tsar of DDO
airmax1227
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12/8/2015 5:07:15 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 12:12:29 PM, TUF wrote:

Oh it's not that I disagree with you or anything. I was more just expressing my surprise at your reaction towards it.

I believe it's an issue that needs addressing and this case (a relatively benign example where there isn't anyone involved to be particularly strongly invested in it - like there would be in a direct voter intimidation case) is a decent opportunity to do so. I believe this specific example is problematic, and it's also worth using the opportunity to make the issue clear more broadly.

In the previous post and in this one you repeated the same thing so many times that it appears slightly more serious than I perceived it being.

It's fair to say that for you and anyone else reading my posts, that I am likely taking this more seriously than they perceive this individual issue. This isn't entirely about YYW and these specific comments, but a broader issue that I intend to address in what I imagine will be a lengthy back and forth.

I am not entirely sure how convinced or scared someone might be to report a vote based on his comment alone because as you said, he is rather powerless in the matter.

As powerless as YYW might be in any official sense, he (like anyone else) does have the ability to discourage one from taking a particular action based on their feelings that there might be some negative consequence (no matter how significant or insignificant, or likely or unlikely that may be) simply by posting comments with that intent (or even unintentionally). YYW having this intent was something he explicitly admitted to, and regardless of how significant this issue might be, there is a broader issue here that must be addressed.

I did take slight issue with him publicly doubting FTs decision though and would have felt the same if FT had voted for lannan and YYW has said the same thing. Presupposing there is an objective way to read and judge a vote is not accurate in my opinion nor beneficial towards getting votes on a debate.

Fair enough, though that's a bit beyond the scope of what I had intended to discuss here.
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airmax1227
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12/8/2015 5:09:57 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 1:41:45 PM, YYW wrote:
At 12/7/2015 9:56:05 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
None of the following is necessary and it's really inappropriate.

I disagree, but I recognize that this is your opinion.

I'm sure we'll disagree here both in this specific incident and more broadly about these types of things, but I look forward to the discussion, clarifying the issue, and explaining exactly what my position (the position of site moderation) is and why it is that way.
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YYW
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12/8/2015 5:14:19 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/8/2015 5:09:57 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
At 12/7/2015 1:41:45 PM, YYW wrote:
At 12/7/2015 9:56:05 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
None of the following is necessary and it's really inappropriate.

I disagree, but I recognize that this is your opinion.

I'm sure we'll disagree here both in this specific incident and more broadly about these types of things, but I look forward to the discussion, clarifying the issue, and explaining exactly what my position (the position of site moderation) is and why it is that way.

Of course. We shall certainly explore it to the fullest extent necessary.
Tsar of DDO
airmax1227
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12/8/2015 5:44:46 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 1:53:24 PM, YYW wrote:
At 12/7/2015 12:12:29 PM, TUF wrote:
Oh it's not that I disagree with you or anything. I was more just expressing my surprise at your reaction towards it. In the previous post and in this one you repeated the same thing so many times that it appears slightly more serious than I perceived it being.

The issue is that Max, being a vote moderator, doesn't want the "authority" of vote moderators coming under attack.

That's not the issue, and I couldn't care less about this. Attack the authority of vote moderators until your heart is content. The vote moderators will remain the authority regarding voting, and I will remain indifferent to their authority being attacked. To be clear though, I am not dismissive of reasonable criticism, and I take that very seriously in the hopes that whatever system is being utilized can always be improved upon with reasonable feedback.

While I know, for example, that Max knows that the vote is sufficient, there is language in the debate which could prompt someone to report it, and might incline some to be amenable to hearing that report.

I said it was unlikely to be removed at a glance. I don't "know" anything until the vote has been reviewed, and it hasn't been. I can't speak to anything having to do with the debate since I haven't read it.

The report would discuss, if made, the extent to which FT's vote was influenced by my vote. Even though FT's vote is incorrect (the debate was a tie), the point is that it passes the standard for what makes a vote "sufficient."

I've already said that at a glance I agree the vote is sufficient. This isn't me saying anything in any official capacity, aside from saying that discouraging reporting of the vote is entirely unnecessary.

The thing is that I have seen some vote moderators (not Max, because he wrote the standard, but others) misapply the standard in close-call cases. I've seen it even happen (once) on one of my debates, and I can anticipate the possibility of it happening here. To the extent that it does, the purpose of my post and comment was twofold:

It's not necessary for you to preempt vote moderation's decision by discouraging its being reported. If you disagreed with the results I would be more than happy to engage you on that discussion, and you would be more than welcome to complain about a result you disagreed with as vocally and vehemently as you felt necessary. What doesn't need to happen is you preempting that process by potentially (regardless of how small a chance it is) discouraging someone from partaking in a crucial site function like reporting a vote.

1. to dissuade people from making stupid reports, and

No one needs you to do this. I don't, and Whiteflame certainly doesn't. If your agenda is to assist vote moderation in this way you are being asked to stop. If your agenda is to make sure a vote that you think is sufficient remains, then your unilateral attempt to preempt vote moderation is unneeded until the time comes when you are asked to moderate votes unilaterally.

2. to indicate that removing this vote will result in my public criticism of that decision.

If done after the fact that would be perfectly fine and you should always feel free to do so. Vote moderation doesn't consider itself to be infallible or to be above criticism. Criticize decision made by vote moderation all you like. If you believe that stating that you will publicly criticize whatever decision vote moderation makes will have any effect on that decision, you are absolutely wrong. Vote moderation applies specific standards to votes and reviews them with those standards in mind. It will NOT be influenced by statements like this by anyone, nor will statements about the results of a vote moderation decision alter that decision in any way. (criticism after the fact is a different issue, and as I said earlier, we take feedback and disagreement seriously and consider those criticisms to improve things).

And indeed, this had exactly the desired effect. Max has already said that the vote will stand, so all's well and good.

I have not said this. I offered a personal opinion on the vote in the context of explaining why your comment wasn't necessary. I have not in any official way whatsoever said that this vote will not be removed. If the vote is reported, it will be reviewed, if that review results in the removal of the vote, that's just how it is - and you are welcome to criticize that result (and vote moderation in general) to the extent that you think is necessary.

I am not entirely sure how convinced or scared someone might be to report a vote based on his comment alone because as you said, he is rather powerless in the matter.

Hardly.

You certainly have the power to voice your opinion like anyone else, and opinions carry weight around here. I very much value everyone's opinion, and I certainly value yours.

You certainly have the power to make comments in debate comments that have the ability to discourage members from reporting votes, or even voting.

_____

I did take slight issue with him publicly doubting FTs decision though and would have felt the same if FT had voted for lannan and YYW has said the same thing.

FT's vote is wrong, and if he gave the win to Lannan I would have said the same thing, because that also would have been wrong.

Presupposing there is an objective way to read and judge a vote is not accurate in my opinion nor beneficial towards getting votes on a debate.

This is incorrect, for a host of reasons I've explained in other posts. Sound judging is, of necessity, an objective undertaking. There are judges who make evaluations subjectively, and they are bad judges.

What matters, in evaluating something objectively, is the relative strength of, and interaction between arguments. So, the argument's structure and substance are what matters, and any judges ideas about, for example, whether the perspective being advocated for is valid or not, is totally irrelevant. That's the difference.

To suggest that judging is not objective is nonsense, for the reason that if it were not objective, then the sole criterion for winning would be your argument's congruence with any particular judge's values and ideas about the world -which would, without limitation, defeat the purpose of debate entirely.

The rest of this is beyond the scope of what I wish to discuss here.
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YYW
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12/8/2015 5:45:36 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/8/2015 5:07:15 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
YYW having this intent was something he explicitly admitted to, and regardless of how significant this issue might be, there is a broader issue here that must be addressed.

This will, presumably, form the basis of our discussion which I will, when convenient for me, respond to. But, at this time I'll just leave you with some preliminary thoughts. If your issue is that people should not influence people in taking any acton, then no person could ever take any action, because all actions (bearing in mind your previous statements about the slightness of the potential effect) have such potential.

That being the case, where compliance with your suggestion (and it is just that... a suggestion, it has no force or effect, with respect to what can or can not be done on the site) with regard to making comments about the potentiality for any person to report anything would require universal inaction. We know it would require universal inaction because, as you said, described your aversion to any action "no matter how significant or insignificant, or likely or unlikely that may be" to have the effect you are averse to.... so that's basically every conceivable thing ever... and it's absurd.

Your reaction was, also, as others (Tuf, FT, and others not in this thread) have suggested, misplaced at best... but this is beyond the substance of what I care to discuss (i.e. the propriety of preemptive strikes on vote reports where moderation--and by "moderation" I mean specifically whiteflame--have the potential to make mistakes). The sole issue at stake is community participation in maintaining voter integrity; your view is inconsistent with that, and therefore it's not something that I can take seriously, any more than it is one which you should be championing here.

But really, what's prompted (I think) the 'extent' of your response is my tone which, I admit, was "salty." That's an issue distinct from your view about the propriety of what I did, it's an issue with how I did it. We can talk about that too, at some length.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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12/8/2015 5:53:33 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/8/2015 5:44:46 AM, airmax1227 wrote:
No one needs you to do this.

I didn't say what I did because I thought anyone wanted it. I did it because I thought it was necessary, and the only reason we're having this discussion is because you agree with my assessment... which is what I wanted on record, and got. So here we are. Be clear in understanding that that was the point, and the point was achieved.

If done after the fact that would be perfectly fine and you should always feel free to do so.

And if done before, which in cases where it's "on the line" I 'might' in the future. What I am curious about is if FT's vote was reported, and if so by whom. I think I know a person who would have reported it, who may have persuaded whiteflame to take it down, because of the "appearance" (specious as the suggestion is) of impropriety in the form of undue influence. This is a stupid suggestion on its face, for reasons we both know, but the point remains that I wanted to preempt discussion of it, and there you go... that's what happened.

Vote moderation doesn't consider itself to be infallible or to be above criticism.

Lovely.

Criticize decision made by vote moderation all you like.

Certainly.

If you believe that stating that you will publicly criticize whatever decision vote moderation makes will have any effect on that decision, you are absolutely wrong.

The point of this discussion was about more than just you, Max. Far more.
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airmax1227
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12/8/2015 6:18:46 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/7/2015 2:07:03 PM, YYW wrote:


This type of thing, and the post above, can only discourage people from reporting a vote if they think someone is going to give them a hard time about it...what other purpose could such a comment have but to discourage a certain action?

Two purposes:

1. To discourage the making of idiotic reports; and

As I said above, no one needs you to do this.

2. To discourage whiteflame from entertaining idiotic reports.

Again, Whiteflame doesn't need you to do this. I assure you that Whiteflame would like every member who feels a vote is worthy of being reported to be reported. While some vote reports may fall into the more frivolous area, we are willing to handle that rather than the alternative being suggested here, which is YYW gets to unilaterally decide which votes are worthy of being reported.

I am certainly aware that the vote is good enough to stand, as are you. But there have been times where "reasons for removal" of a debate have nothing to do with the objective standard we both agree ought to remain in place, and far more to do with the subjective content of an RFD --meaning that the standard was misapplied.

I'm sure there are cases where a result didn't jive with what you thought it should have been and I might agree with you in some of those cases. Some disagreements over the results of vote reviews does not justify the 'YYW gets to unilaterally decide which votes are worthy of being reported' system. This system being implemented through your ability to discourage members from reporting votes. It doesn't matter how unlikely you think a member is to be discouraged (in terms of vote reporting or actually placing votes), your own intent was described by you as motivated towards those ends.

We have been through this before, and the purpose of my post was to "preempt" that kind of thing, which it clearly did, as is evidenced by (a) the fact that you responded to what I wrote;

I responded to what you wrote because it was reported. The reason it was reported is because the 'yyw decides unilaterally what votes are worthy of being reported' is concerning to those who reported the comments (and certainly myself), and if left unaddressed allows a continuation of what can reasonably be perceived as an attempt to gain a result through some manner of intimidation.

(b) the fact that you agree with my assessment of the vote's sufficiency; and

That reality makes your comments unnecessary, it doesn't justify them. You are welcome to state your opinion on FTs vote, but to criticize hypothetical reporters (and their life decisions, really?) goes beyond reasonable comments and into what has spawned this discussion about how it's not the place of members to engage in activity that creates a potentially hostile atmosphere to advance the unilateral decisions of anyone. In this case, it's vote reporters, and if ignored, it's not a stretch to see that continued unabated, could even worse allow such actions to discourage potential voters with statements like, for example, "Anyone who votes Pro on this debate needs to reevaluate their life decisions" and to continue to make comments as such on any debate. Surely you can recognize why that might be problematic if not discouraged, or at the very least understand why it should be discussed to find at what point comments go from being reasonable feedback to being negative for the site.

(c) the fact that now there will be no "reports" filed, because of the previous two reasons (unless a person is just really dumb).

I think it's actually more likely to be reported now since some will be curious to see exactly what the result is - and to just troll WF, myself and you. I will be a bit surprised if this vote isn't reviewed now. Though I do think whoever reports it will very much not want that they reported it to be known by you, and the fact that they have to entertain that concern to any extent is exactly what the entire point is.
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