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Comments on Suggestion for allowing to mark answers as "accepted", "outdated" or "dangerous"

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Suggestion for allowing to mark answers as "accepted", "outdated" or "dangerous"

+26
−1

Currently, it is possible to upvote and downvote answers. That's likely enough in most situations, but there are some cases where you might want to have more than one way to react to a post.

For example, imagine you are on Software Development and an answer suggests a solution that drastically impedes your system's security. Or you are on Electrical Engineering and the answer suggests something that might electrocute you. In these cases, a downvote might not be enough of a signal to warn users of such possible dangers.

Another possible situation is "accepting answers", a concept that exists on most common Q&A sites. Unlike other sites, we decided quite early that a single vote from the asker shouldn't impact answer sort order.

And yet another feature suggested and strongly advocated for by some users is the option of "signed votes", mostly seen as a way for experts or highly reputable community members to give more weight to their votes by publicly endorsing (or refuting) a specific answer.

I think I've got a solution, one that might provide a framework for commmunities to solve all these use cases. We discussed this in chat and tossed some ideas around, and I must say that I absolutely love the current proposal:


Communities will be able to define a small set of "reactions", which can be applied to posts. Default (or recommended) reactions would likely be:

  • ☑ This post works for me (= accepting an answer, but not only by OP)
  • ⏳ This post is outdated
  • ⚠ This post is dangerous

However, communities might want to have different reactions. For example, Cooking might want to have

  • 😋 This is tasty
  • 🤮 This doesn't taste good

Once applied to answers, there would be a little box/badge above the answer, which contains the selected reaction and a list of users who have chosen that reaction. I used the developer tools in my browser to simulate what this might look like. Imagin, that the tooltip on the first badge says the names of the users choosing that reaction.

Mockup showing two badges (works for many users & found dangerous by one user) above a post

Users will be able to choose reactions from a modal that can be opened from a button below the voting buttons. When choosing a reaction, users will be encouraged to add comments, giving details to their vote. This is especially neccessary for marking a post as "dangerous", because other users need to know what exactly is dangerous.

Here are two mockups for how the reactions modal might be presented:

Mockup showing a modal with the label "This post ..." and the options "works for me", "is outdated" and "is dangerous (add comment)" and an optional comment box

Same mockup as above, but some icons similiar to the emojis in the list above have been added

Additionally, when entering a comment into the comment box in the modal, a comment will be posted on the user's behalf, which contains the chosen reaction and comment. (Also seen in the screenshots.)

What do you think of this suggested feature? Do you have any other use cases we should consider if we chose to implement this suggestion?

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General comments (7 comments)
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+1
−4

I will never use any negative reactions that require my name next to them for the same reason I never explain downvotes, people tend to react poorly to negative feedback and tend to take that out on the downvoter.

People are always free to leave a comment explaining why the dislike or consider something wrong but I fear that requiring that everyone do so will filter out everyone except the most thick skinned users or encourage anonymous profiles.

Putting users names next to positive reactions has the problem that the receiver may feel indebted to the giver and more hesitant to downvote the giver's contributions in the future.

I am not opposed to the idea of reactions totally, but would rather they be anonymous.

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1 comment thread

General comments (4 comments)
General comments
Mithical‭ wrote almost 4 years ago

Perhaps they shouldn't show the username to the OP or non-signed-in users

luap42‭ wrote almost 4 years ago

My gut feeling tells me that showing the names here is a good idea, but if there were agreement not to show it by default, I’d either consider making it an option or showing the name only when adding a comment (since it’s then shown already, OTOH makes intentional signed downvotes harder).

manassehkatz‭ wrote almost 4 years ago

that the receiver may feel indebted to the giver Interesting. I could see that if votes were identified, since those cause rep-or-equivalent (I think it will be a while before, in a sense, rep truly disappears, even if it doesn't directly grant privileges). But reactions would be, I think, specific to the particular post and not accumulated (List 23 "helped me" and 17 "danger" in user profile?)

Olin Lathrop‭ wrote almost 4 years ago

The proposed additional voting options are optional. If you don't want to be identified, nobody is forcing you. You only list problems with signed votes, but there are problems with unsigned votes too. Vandalism was certainly a problem on SE. It also sucks when your post is downvoted, but without any explanation. Put another way, if you're not willing to stand up and say something is wrong publicly, then any such judgement will always be suspect.