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Subject: Eliminate thumbs! (and other thumb related ideas) rss

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J C Lawrence
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
mccrispy wrote:
The use of non-universally understood acronyms is a form of jargon - itself a non-inclusive (read elitist) form.


Absolutely. I am frequently and deliberately non-inclusive and elitist. In this particular case all the terms are trivially defined with a web search (and you are likely already using a web-browser) and so I assume that any reader sufficiently interested in the discussion will do so. If they don't, then they suggest that they are insufficiently interested in the discussion to be worth my interest. The result is a simple self-culling system that optimises for engagement and proactive interest.

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But to answer your question: no idea, can't be bothered to look 'em up either because it can't have been important enough to you in making your point to ensure that I understood you.


Bad assumption.

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That doesn't mean that it isn't something to be guarded against both by those who may find themselves inside the circle as well as well as by those who find themselves to be outside.


I am less democratic and see intellectual and financial elitism as both a natural and a necessary outcome of many useful functions, and thus largely acceptable. As such I ward against counter-productive excess and not the mere presence of elitism.

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But would it be financially viable or large enough to sustain its membership or to be relevant?


I don't see (broad) popularity as critical to relevance, but rather a significant detractor from possible relevance. Insight and thought leadership are far more important values in my measure, and they only require small populations.

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I for one hope it stays that way.


BGG's utility has been steadily declining for me. I currently find 1-3 somewhat interesting threads per week, but the cost of finding them often exceeds their value. BGG staying the way it is, or continuing to progress in its current directions, is not something I hope for.
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
BaseTwelve wrote:
Aldaron wrote:
(1) A true rating system for contributions: thumbs up and down.

This is a feature, not a bug. BGG used to have a thumbs down, but it was removed.

I'm quite aware of the history.

BaseTwelve wrote:
Aldaron wrote:
But in the absence of a rating system with consequences, most of the content here will remain crap.

I really don't think most people in this very active, seemingly thriving community would agree that most of the content here is crap.

QED
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
Some of the Above wrote:
Various people discussing how thumbs reduce the intellectual quality of BGG.


I guess I didn't realize that a website about games had to be so very SERIOUS.
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J C Lawrence
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
BaseTwelve wrote:
Aldaron wrote:
(1) A true rating system for contributions: thumbs up and down.


This is a feature, not a bug. BGG used to have a thumbs down, but it was removed.


More directly, it has been exhaustively and extensively demonstrated that negative reputation systems destroy their own values. See: Building Web Reputation Systems by Randy Farmer et al.

Quote:
Aldaron wrote:
But in the absence of a rating system with consequences, most of the content here will remain crap.


I really don't think most people in this very active, seemingly thriving community would agree that most of the content here is crap.


I would, long before even considering Sturgeon's law. The majority of content on BGG is blather without any particular value past the instant of its creation.
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
clearclaw wrote:
More directly, it has been exhaustively and extensively demonstrated that negative reputation systems destroy their own values. See: Building Web Reputation Systems by Randy Farmer et al.

Well, Farmer certainly advocates that view, but I'd hardly call his work a "demonstration", let alone and "exhaustive" one. And his active participation in Stack Exchange makes one wonder where he'd place it in his schema (hint: if you read his work closely it's basically circular reasoning, and his conclusions don't apply to SE).
 
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J C Lawrence
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
I didn't call Randy's book a demonstration (functionally, it can't be).

As he and the other authors have commented in their @BuildingRep twitter stream, Stack Exchange is an interesting case.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
clearclaw wrote:
As the population of shit-shooters is more than two orders of magnitude larger and more vocal than the population of "reasoners" (to make up a not-too-pejorative term), King Canute inevitably drowns again.

I had to look this up because I wasn't familiar with the reference. I saw no mention of him drowning (though one site says he came close). The tale seems to be that King Canute had to get his robes and feet wet in order to prove to the shit-shooters (I like both your terms, by the way) that he couldn't command the tides. It kind of undermines your argument, both by refuting the idea that the shit-shooters are an evolutionary threat that will convince a king to drown himself, and because you presented as argument something that seems closer to a fable than an actual event. It doesn't really bode well for your promotion of intellectual elitism or rigor.

Aldaron wrote:
BaseTwelve wrote:
Aldaron wrote:
But in the absence of a rating system with consequences, most of the content here will remain crap.

I really don't think most people in this very active, seemingly thriving community would agree that most of the content here is crap.

QED

Just to be clear, are you calling my comment crap? In latin? I can't see how else I might have proven your point with what I said.
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
clearclaw wrote:
I didn't call Randy's book a demonstration (functionally, it can't be).

I figured something that "demonstrated" was a demonstration.

clearclaw wrote:
As he and the other authors have commented in their @BuildingRep twitter stream...

Twitter, now there's a low noise channel!

clear claw wrote:
...Stack Exchange is an interesting case.

As I said.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
BaseTwelve wrote:
Aldaron wrote:
BaseTwelve wrote:
I really don't think most people in this very active, seemingly thriving community would agree that most of the content here is crap.

QED

Just to be clear, are you calling my comment crap? In latin? I can't see how else I might have proven your point with what I said.

No, not at all. Your comment is accurate; and it's the point. To get high quality content, you need to drive away or silence "most people". BGG has chosen to focus on being a "thriving" (i.e., large and inclusive) "community" (i.e. it's about participation, not about reducing noise or eliminating irrelevant or inaccurate information). That's fine, and thumbs (just "up" ones) are part of that (that's the history you point to).
 
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Adam Vajcovec
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
Aldaron wrote:
No, not at all. Your comment is accurate; and it's the point. To get high quality content, you need to drive away or silence "most people".

Ah, okay. I still disagree with the last part. To get only high quality content, of the kind you prefer, you may want to do that. But just because there is a low signal-to-noise ratio doesn't mean there's no signal. With search engines, custom feeds and subscriptions based on user, game, list, thread, etc., there are tools to filter out the noise. I'm not saying you wouldn't be happier with a different system. Likewise when clearclaw says...

clearclaw wrote:
BGG's utility has been steadily declining for me. I currently find 1-3 somewhat interesting threads per week, but the cost of finding them often exceeds their value. BGG staying the way it is, or continuing to progress in its current directions, is not something I hope for.

That's fine, but I'd rather see a new community spring up that meets your needs, or a sub-community form within this one, rather than "drive away or silence" the majority of users that enjoy BGG the way it is.
 
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J C Lawrence
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
BaseTwelve wrote:
clearclaw wrote:
As the population of shit-shooters is more than two orders of magnitude larger and more vocal than the population of "reasoners" (to make up a not-too-pejorative term), King Canute inevitably drowns again.


I had to look this up because I wasn't familiar with the reference. I saw no mention of him drowning (though one site says he came close).


Indeed, he didn't drown. It is a mixed metaphor.

Quote:
It kind of undermines your argument, both by refuting the idea that the shit-shooters are an evolutionary threat that will convince a king to drown himself, and because you presented as argument something that seems closer to a fable than an actual event.


You miss the point, I think by having the causality backwards. Shit-shooters will inevitably overwhelm the population of Reasoners in any forum which rewards shit-shooting without a strictly dominant external control. The tribal rewards for shit-shooting are too strong for there to be any other result.

Quote:
It doesn't really bode well for your promotion of intellectual elitism or rigor.


Are you really asking for metaphorical speech to be both literally and logically consistent?
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J C Lawrence
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
Aldaron wrote:
Twitter, now there's a low noise channel!


It can be high noise, but doesn't have to be. There are high signal purposive posters on Twitter (@timoreilly is a notable case in point), they're just rare. It is a question of whom one follows/reads.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
clearclaw wrote:
mccrispy wrote:
But would it be financially viable or large enough to sustain its membership or to be relevant?


I don't see (broad) popularity as critical to relevance, but rather a significant detractor from possible relevance. Insight and thought leadership are far more important values in my measure, and they only require small populations.
I didn't mean to imply the need for (broad) popularity to be critical to relevance, what I was after was whether (in the context of discussions about boardgaming) the "insight and thought leadership" would be relevant (i.e. broadly "useful"). To a certain extent (and here I refer to the discussion regarding reviews/critique on the previously mentioned thread) I can see value in a forum that discusses design, hopefully leading to better design. No, wait, hang on a minute: those designers would also be "elite" designers, designing elite games for elite gamers. Still, that's OK, the elites would be funding it; works for me

Quote:
Quote:
I for one hope it stays that way.


BGG's utility has been steadily declining for me. I currently find 1-3 somewhat interesting threads per week, but the cost of finding them often exceeds their value. BGG staying the way it is, or continuing to progress in its current directions, is not something I hope for.
It's a shame that you feel that way, what keeps you coming back? It sounds as though your return on investment has hit a dangerously low level.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
Brother Jim wrote:
Samo, I almost always find myself agreeing with what you have to say, but respectfully, this isn't one of them. I completely understand your logic and I appreciate the thoughtfulness of your points.

The proponents of thums also have a lot of interesting arguments and I like this back and forth, it makes me understand the other side of the coin and I hope something new will come out of it as well.

As for agreeing, it would be boring if we agreed on everything. I also usually disagree with J C, but here I seem to be part of the "fan mudering clan". laugh

On your objections 1 and 2 - I guess thumbing is useful on some threads (recommendation, rules explanation), but I don't find it necessary on all threads, hence I'd stick with my "making thumbs optional" (or disabling thumbs optional.)


Brother Jim wrote:
3. I can't believe I'm saying this because I often find myself rolling my eyes at a thread derailing joke post, but a little well thumbed humor on a thread sometimes can be welcome.


If a joke is posted on a forum and nobody thumbs it, is it still funny?



clearclaw wrote:
I would find thumbs far more interesting & useful if thumbs were not a shared/published stat and were only visible to the giver and the poster of the content thumbed. ie the thumb stats (up and down) of object would not be visible to others. A lightweight personal feedback system would be interesting.

Both these suggestions are interesting.

The second one I'm not so sure it's substantially different than thumbing/power posting. It seems similar to tagging posts, which could even be worse than thumbs as they could be negative as well.

My main interest is pushing the thread onward and I don't see how this could be helped by any kind of lightweight "me too" stickers. Maybe having two thumbs: one for "I find this comment useful" (as on IMDB) and the other for "funny, lol". And maybe you could set up your page to ignore the second one.

clearclaw wrote:
While I agree, the common form is for arguments to become popularity contests with the "winner" determined by which argument had more vocal proponents. This feeds heavily back with confirmation, selection and related biases/logical fallacies. It takes an unusually well disciplined audience, which typically only exists if there is an external objective arbiter of Truth (eg real world behaviour vs debates around the physical sciences), to overwhelm this human tribal nature -- and even then tribalism inevitably wins as soon as the debate moves an iota away from its validation metrics (cf the debate on global warming).

I've been on two forum with a culture of strong arguments against the popular ones.

First one was a philosophical forum (mostly students) where sometimes fights would occur between different schools of thought (analytical philosophy, structuralism, ontology) and even with camps forming, mostly the most skilful "fencer" would be respected (or more often challenged).

Second one were flamewars on official catholic site between Catholics and atheists (me belonging in neither camp) and the reason why the discussion was on a high level was that the mods sought any opportunity to ban the atheists if opportunity presented itself. While at the same time they were forced to restrain the most emotional of their own flock.

The real dialogue might be absent at both forums (thread repeating itself after page 5), but good posts could be found. Gaming I hope is less about universal truth than the topics I mentioned, so it's more space to explore the shades of grey between the black and white. I hope.
 
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Samo Gosaric
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
clearclaw wrote:
In broad I see BGG's implementation of thumbs as having had two primary effects, both of which I see as strongly destructive:

1) The encouragement and official enfranchisement of popularity politics and games.

2) Moving the primary focus from innate content-utility to reaction-response value (ie things are valuable because of their audience response).


The social critic in me absolutely agrees. I doubt that this was the reason behind the implementation, but that's part of its effect for sure. I'd say it's part of emotional discourse, which is more and more prominent in recent years, though I would wouldn't go into it right now.

further reading/watching

On emotional discourse in media):

(0:00-5:45, the rest it relevant as well)

On emotional discourse and how to fight it:
Brian Massumi - interview (PDF)

Excerpt:
Quote:
Companies work very hard to produce brand loyalty. ‘Fidelity programs’ involving things like rewards points are everywhere. The product becomes a long-term part of your life, you’re brought into a relationship with the company through fidelity programs, service networks, promises of upgrades, etc. The way you use the product is also more and more oriented towards relationship — the most seductive products produce possibilities of connection. ‘Connectibility’ is another buzzword. When we buy a product, we’re buying potential connections with other things and especially other people — for example, when a family buys a computer to keep in touch by email, or when you get a computer for work and end up joining on-line communities. What’s being sold more and more is experience, social experience. The corporation, the capitalist company, is having to create social networks and cultural nodes that come together around the product, and the product gets used more and more to create social networks that radiate out from it. ‘Networking’ was the buzzword in the 1980s, when this new kind of capitalist power was just coming into its own.


edit: oops
 
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Samo Gosaric
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
russ wrote:
(I'm somehow reminded of the scene with the crowd chanting "Yes, we are all individual!" in unison from "Life of Brian"...)


You read my mind. I was thinking about this same scene for the last couple of posts.

russ wrote:
It's rather a paradox, that you want people to think on their own, but at the same time you want them all to come to the same specific conclusion that you came to...

Well of course any protocol that is proposed is only that - a proposal.
Still, I obviously can't say don't thumb each other posts, but I can ask not to thumb mine (uhm, on this thread).

russ wrote:
(But as a polite courtesy and sort of "show of good faith" I'll not give you another thumb in this particular thread, even when I think you've made some interesting points.)


I must say I'm fighting my own patterns and habits with this one.
But on the other hand I do appreciated thoughtful responses and that I find more valuable, really.

@Orangemoose
I'm okay with people thumbing me on this tread removing their thumbs.
I can even search them and return the favour, if it makes it more, I don't know, fair?

russ wrote:
About unpopular ideas: how would eliminating thumbs encourage them? Comments with unpopular ideas often attract negative comments in reaction which can discourage people from posting unpopular ideas, regardless of the ability to thumb or not.
/.../
Hmm, I guess you mean that the negative comments in reaction get thumbs and that makes the original poster feel that even more people are "against" them? Hmm, I guess that could happen indeed. Is that what you're getting at with respect to unpopular ideas?

Well if you remove thumbs and prohibit "me too" posts, then people against your idea are forced (or at least I hope so) to articulate themselves. In the end I guess this is my main wish - more articulated viewpoints on whatever they may be.

Okay, I'm probably repeating myself and it's not that big of a point, but two most common ways to make a post that generates the most thumbs i.e. is seen as the most "useful" are: A) tangential joke B) thoughtful and lengthy response. Problem: takes more effort to write (B). And if you aim for B but are not though enough, forget about popularity/"usefulness".

BaseTwelve wrote:
sgosaric wrote:
I feel that thumbs grant anonymity to those who participate merely but thumbing and not discussing, hence actually avoiding responsibility. And avoiding responsibility for me is not community building.

That's funny, because I frequently click on the number to see exactly who thumbed a certain post in order to determine whether they also participated elsewhere in the thread. Thumbs don't actually grant any anonymity.
/.../
One aspect of building a community is communicating where the members agree and disagree.


Took me a while to get this. (My mind being on a different track).

blush Actually I found a couple of geekbuddies this way...

Though this could still be achieved by what J C proposed - only the poster would see thumbs on his/hers post. I dunno, I seem to be reaching the conclusion that there are threads where I would find thumbing useful and where I wish to avoid it (comments on articles in particular) so, I'm for making it optional.

BaseTwelve wrote:
From what I've gathered in this thread, a forum that prizes that sort of debate (and avoids thumbs or likes in order to encourage it) requires more moderation and guidelines than BGG can afford/enforce.

I think this is the issue as well. This model seems to be more suited to smaller forums.
 
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Samo Gosaric
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
@mccrispy
Note to self: remember to ban this guy when the spaßmurderingpartei comes to power ninja

Seriously though, I can't see why can't everybody have their own playground:

clearclaw wrote:
There is an evolutionary tension there. The more people shoot the shit and have a good time, the more rigorous/reasoned posters will be dissuaded from participating.
/.../
I agree that it likely requires more overhead than BGG can afford given its current financial model and success-definition -- but change those two and a lot more becomes quite possible.

BaseTwelve wrote:
I completely agree, I just don't think that should be a goal for BGG. That's my personal opinion though. I like BGG to be as broad and inclusive as possible, while staying within the confines of the hobby.

I think one of the problems here is that BGG has a policy that everything boardgaming would be part of BGG (there's been talk about this on F:AT when BGN became a part of BGG). This makes the BGG mainstream culture to take over whatever the community the other site had. Which is why I totally agree with you on this:

BaseTwelve wrote:
Now, I wouldn't be opposed to a section of sub-forums that allowed more strict user-moderated content for people that want that sort of thing, as long as it wouldn't be a drain on BGG's resources.


I think it could make the BGG more diverse and that's a good thing.
I'm more in favour of optional disabling of thumbs than separate section. Open for discussion on this one.


wifwendell wrote:
I guess I didn't realize that a website about games had to be so very SERIOUS.


I think the point should be the opposite: what can a website do to not drive away the population which is serious about it.

Let's look at F:AT. It's a site created by the community and it certainly shows. As you may now 95% of the discussions there are about everybody being named Dick and general bullexcrements. However articles have a special place on that site and they're given a separate category and half of the front page.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
clearclaw wrote:
BaseTwelve wrote:
clearclaw wrote:
As the population of shit-shooters is more than two orders of magnitude larger and more vocal than the population of "reasoners" (to make up a not-too-pejorative term), King Canute inevitably drowns again.


I had to look this up because I wasn't familiar with the reference. I saw no mention of him drowning (though one site says he came close).


Indeed, he didn't drown. It is a mixed metaphor.

No, it's not. In fact, your statement wasn't a metaphor at all. In order to be a metaphor you would have had to make a comparison to an otherwise unrelated situation. But the case of King Canute wasn't unrelated at all. It was directly related to your argument in that it was a large group of "shit-shooters" and one "reasoner". Your claim that it was just a metaphor is sidestepping the fact that you misrepresented the facts of that situation to attempt to support your argument.

clearclaw wrote:
Shit-shooters will inevitably overwhelm the population of Reasoners in any forum which rewards shit-shooting without a strictly dominant external control. The tribal rewards for shit-shooting are too strong for there to be any other result.

Simply stating that something is inevitable is not a useful argument. I don't feel that you've backed up the claim you make here.

clearclaw wrote:
Are you really asking for metaphorical speech to be both literally and logically consistent?

If you had said...
Quote:
As the population of shit-shooters is more than two orders of magnitude larger and more vocal than the population of "reasoners" (to make up a not-too-pejorative term), the signal gets lost in the noise.

That would have been a metaphor. As it is you just made an inaccurate historical reference that fails to support your argument. The actual situation, as far as I can tell, demonstrates the opposite of your argument. Specifically, that one man was able to show by example the error of a large group and was not, in fact, inevitably overwhelmed.

Wow, you almost had me there! I kept trying to come up with another metaphor to compare to yours. I just couldn't wrap my head around it until I finally realized that there was no metaphor.

Sorry everyone for getting way off track here!
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Samo Gosaric
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
Brother Jim wrote:
sgosaric wrote:
3. In forums without thumbs a post with solid arguments stands until somebody successfully argues against, and amount of nodding or popularity doesn't change that. And that I believe has dual effect:
a) people are forced to write better argumentated posts, making the content of the these forums better
b) people will find it easier to express less popular ideas, making as a result the forums more diverse

I don't feel informed to comment on the running financing mini-thread, so I'll just address this. I love the principle, but I feel its idealism is sabotaged by simple practicality. If a thread is twenty pages long, I'm not going to read every page before I feel I can participate. This would especially be the case if many of the posts were 98% in agreement with previous posters, adding little. Thumbs allow clarity to the debate, for a number of perspectives to coalesce and be developed further. If you amplify everything, you hear nothing.


Hm, what about separating the useful comments from the funny ones with two thumbing systems one for usefullness and the other for "liking" (funny stuff, etc). In essence tipping could be this, but hm, firstly it's not as visible as thumbs and secondly there should be guidlines to enforce this. Not sure.

Brother Jim wrote:
Edit: Samo, I wouldn't mind your enable/disable option at all. It sounds perfectly reasonable to me. I'd hope that the default would be set to the thumbs being enabled for the reasons mentioned, but the idea of having the choice is an intriguing one.

Seems to be the most interesting option for me as well. for Agree thumbing to stay as default.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
sgosaric wrote:
Though this could still be achieved by what J C proposed - only the poster would see thumbs on his/hers post. I dunno, I seem to be reaching the conclusion that there are threads where I would find thumbing useful and where I wish to avoid it (comments on articles in particular) so, I'm for making it optional.

I like that idea too. I think giving more control to the thread creator could be really interesting.

sgosaric wrote:
I'm more in favour of optional disabling of thumbs than separate section. Open for discussion on this one.

I'd like to see where that discussion leads as well. I can't say I have a strong preference either way right now.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
sgosaric wrote:
Hm, what about separating the useful comments from the funny ones with two thumbing systems one for usefullness and the other for "liking" (funny stuff, etc). In essence tipping could be this, but hm, firstly it's not as visible as thumbs and secondly there should be guidlines to enforce this. Not sure.

Slashdot's moderation system allows for different labels such as Funny, Insightful and Informative. It works fine but on a high traffic site like that moderation isn't available to all users all the time. Each post is also capped at +5. In that sense it's very different from an open, unlimited thumb system like BGG's.

Some sort of middle ground might be interesting, but would probably require major coding changes and a lot of work for the admins to implement. Then again, I'm not sure how much work it would be to give the thread creator control over thumbing. That could be a considerable effort too.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
So here's this relevant and interesting topic and I haven't taken the time to read all of it up to this point. I feel like I'm not really participating before posting. I think that's a much stronger influence than thumbs of any kind on any site using any system. Sorry, but I just couldnt' spend an hour catching up. But to be clear, I don't like any of those systems, except to a certain degree, and for good reason, the thumbs on BGG.

I've never used FB Likes, dont' even look at them. BGG thumbs are very useful to simply say "Hey, I was on and I read what you wrote here, and it's worth me telling you at least that." In communication terms it serves as an ACK. And you can click the thumbs received and find out who ACK'd without interrupting the actual content..

It does blend with what's popular, but you have to mentally give them a weighting just like game ratings. If there's a thread with posts by 10 different users and the post with the highest thumb count is 4 or 5, while the rest have 0 or 1, how valuable is that 4 or 5 in context? The other side of it that once a topic gets its thumb push, it tends to get pushed more, but that's just how you read the weighting.
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J C Lawrence
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
mccrispy wrote:
To a certain extent (and here I refer to the discussion regarding reviews/critique on the previously mentioned thread) I can see value in a forum that discusses design, hopefully leading to better design. No, wait, hang on a minute: those designers would also be "elite" designers, designing elite games for elite gamers. Still, that's OK, the elites would be funding it; works for me :)


FWLIW I prefer to consider game design without consideration for the audience's social structures, status games, or notions of popularity -- but that is a different subject.

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BGG's utility has been steadily declining for me. I currently find 1-3 somewhat interesting threads per week, but the cost of finding them often exceeds their value. BGG staying the way it is, or continuing to progress in its current directions, is not something I hope for.


It's a shame that you feel that way, what keeps you coming back? It sounds as though your return on investment has hit a dangerously low level.


Hardly a shame, just a predictable outcome. The ROI has been near zero for several years now. At the moment my activity is somewhere between habit and vanity.
 
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
BaseTwelve wrote:
clearclaw wrote:
BaseTwelve wrote:
clearclaw wrote:
As the population of shit-shooters is more than two orders of magnitude larger and more vocal than the population of "reasoners" (to make up a not-too-pejorative term), King Canute inevitably drowns again.


I had to look this up because I wasn't familiar with the reference. I saw no mention of him drowning (though one site says he came close).


Indeed, he didn't drown. It is a mixed metaphor.


No, it's not. In fact, your statement wasn't a metaphor at all.


Really? The implied equivalence to the futility of beating a dead horse as contrasted with the absurdity of stopping the tide by fiat, both to the point of personal mortality in support of asserted idealogue righteousness is not a metaphor? Oh, and all rolled up with echoes of repetitive history and the preventative failures of cultural knowledge encoded opaquely in alegories and fables?

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In order to be a metaphor you would have had to make a comparison to an otherwise unrelated situation.


Ahh so. Good thing I didn't do that then. I am relieved.

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But the case of King Canute wasn't unrelated at all. It was directly related to your argument in that it was a large group of "shit-shooters" and one "reasoner".


Precisely, except that his situation involved personal politics instead of emergent group behaviors, and he was in part attempting to counter the short-sighted idiocy of the status-seekingly pompous whereas the righteous ideologues that surround this topic (if not so much this thread) are merely committed to blind application of equally silly egalitarion mandates. It is so close, and yet so far away.

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Your claim that it was just a metaphor is sidestepping the fact that you misrepresented the facts of that situation to attempt to support your argument.


Sigh.

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clearclaw wrote:
Shit-shooters will inevitably overwhelm the population of Reasoners in any forum which rewards shit-shooting without a strictly dominant external control. The tribal rewards for shit-shooting are too strong for there to be any other result.


Simply stating that something is inevitable is not a useful argument. I don't feel that you've backed up the claim you make here.


I didn't back it up -- does it really need support? If you want to dig into the area I recommend hitting CiteSeer and looking for things around social reinforcement structures, bonding patterns, implicit social rewards, emergent social protocols, socially enforced normative patterns and the whole morass of "fitting in" and the values associated with it. Or you could just look at Usenet, FIDO, RIME, ILink, UO and a host of other like recent living examples. (This iPad makes digging out citations a PITA as I frequently lose the edit buffer while getting citations).

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clearclaw wrote:
Are you really asking for metaphorical speech to be both literally and logically consistent?


If you had said...

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As the population of shit-shooters is more than two orders of magnitude larger and more vocal than the population of "reasoners" (to make up a not-too-pejorative term), the signal gets lost in the noise.


I didn't say that, as it is not what I meant and puts the primary focus on something irrelevant to my point and interest in the statement (signal vs noise instead of normative social behavior).

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I just couldn't wrap my head around it until I finally realized that there was no metaphor.


Oops.
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Re: Eliminate thumbs!
sgosaric wrote:
I'd say it's part of emotional discourse, which is more and more prominent in recent years, though I would go into it right now.


Also without wanting to dive into that morass, suffice to say that I find such abhorrent.
 
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