Arbital likes

by Alexei Andreev Apr 1 2015 updated Jul 18 2016

What are likes? When should I use them? What happens when I like something?

You can express that you like something by liking it. If you are logged in, you can click on "thumbs up" icon corresponding to the page, edit, or comment.

When should I like something?


Malcolm Ocean

I think that in practice these norms will be hard to enforce just by culture. I would recommend a few things:

1) like the forums, remind people of these norms a few times as they get used to the platform. Discourse shows this message to new users the first couple of times they go to comment. Something similar here might make sense.

discourse new user message

2) make it easier to do the things you want to incentivize, and harder to do the other things. For instance…

If you are one of the first people to dislike a page, please leave a comment telling the author why you disliked it. It will help them improve.

So maybe make this mandatory. In order for the downvote to register, you need to type at least 5 words of why. There could be a dropdown or something to make this easier, so you could just pick "I found this hard to read; get someone to edit it before publishing" or "this is snarky in a way that seems likely to provoke more rage than productive discussion" or "I want to plaster (citation needed) on your entire page". Maybe only for top-level pages, and maybe only for the first downvote or two. But still.

Similarly, we might ask how to effectively incentivize each of the other items on this list.

The terms—"like", "vote", etc—will probably play a role here too. As much as you can try to define them, other connotations and associations will sneak in. The ones chosen seem okay, but I wonder if something else mightn't work better… perhaps "high quality"/"low quality" instead of "like"/"dislike" and "bet" instead of "vote", although I only spend a few moments coming up with those.