Comment 34356

By Mahesh P. Butani -- http://www.metroHami (anonymous) | Posted October 01, 2009 at 21:35:24

If the goal of rating the comments is to get feedback for developing a progressive understanding of the thoughts posed in the article/blog - via a visual reference of agreements, disagreements or recommendations [a non-zero sum approach], - then we should step back from using sports and political terminologies like "Scoring" and "Voting".

A simple mechanism at the end of each post as below should suffice to express the readers opinions:

>>> Agree 2 | Disagree 6 { alert moderator }

If the goal of rating as mentioned above, is to establish who wins and who looses a position or an argument [a zero sum approach], then the existing system goes a long way in perpetuating the bipolar approach to discussions --- where the original article/blog stops being the centre of deliberations and the comments take over the personality of what is being deliberated.

The {Agree/Disagree} approach - or the {Recommend} approach has been used by many newspaper and magazine websites with very tempered outcomes most often resulting in furthering the original thoughts posed in article/blogs.

How often would you {Recommend} a post if you did not agree with it? How often would you choose to {Disagree} and the go on to say %$#F $@!% because you disagree? Or how often would you {Disagree} and not be naturally inclined to explain your disagreement in a tempered post?

The {Thumbs up/Down - Icons} approach very similar to the {+/- Votes} mostly leads to harsher feedback cycles and derailments on account of the defensive position of those who end up receiving the many minuses or thumbs-downs.

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