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A Dislike Button?


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I know some will hate this idea but I'd like to know if it might be possible to introduce the opposite of the "Like This" button when rating individual posts?

Likes and Dislikes are flip-sides of the same coin and having one without the other feels limiting.

To avoid pain it might best be shown as an anonymous vote and users would have 10 Dislikes to give out each week (if they wanted) - so nobody could go berserk!

Perhaps A few different Dislike versions could be introduced:
Dislike for being way off topic
Dislike for being endlessly syrupy
Dislike for using 1200 wandering words when 200 would do it
Dislike for being a dreadful old curmudgeon and being beastly about some performances
etc.

That last one might well be the one people would click on for some of my posts I feel certain!

I'm sure the answer will be that it's not possible with the forum technology as is. But that will be a shame - truly!

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Bruce, that is definitely a chuckle-worthy post :lol:  :lol: , but I am afraid my vote is a:

 

"Dislike for being a meanie :angry: ". 

 

I am too nice to ever dislike someone and if I was ever disliked I'd be mortified with hours of follow-up soul searching as to where I went wrong :( .

 

Oh, and it would have to be un-anonymous so I could get my revenge...

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Don't like this, Bruce, but with no button I have to say so in words and even have a go at a reasoned argument - which makes it possible to explore the subject further.

For anyone who thinks we're all too uncontroversial and wants to see the occasional feather being spat, I can recommend some of the threads in "Doing Dance", but happily a general spirit of niceness prevails, which is something that shouldn't be destroyed .

Some of you might feel nauseous by now, but you have to say so to make your feelings known rather than just click and pass on.

Discuss.

Edited by Grand Tier Left
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Don't like this, Bruce, but with no button I have to say so in words and even have a go at a reasoned argument - which makes it possible to explore the subject further.

 

But why should people not have to say in words why they like soemthing?

 

Why should it be easy to give a generic 'Like' and not a generic 'Dislike'?

Edited by Bruce
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Well I suppose that begs the question "should we have a "like" button".  There is no "like" button on another forum that uses the same board software so presumably it is a facility that could be disabled.

 

I use the "like" button to signify that I agree with someone or to show support to someone.  Does this mean I am being considerate in not clogging up a thread with "I agree" or "well done" or am I just being lazy and not writing.

 

Well said GTL.  I will now go and "like" your post!

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I am puzzled as to why Bruce feels the need to put this as a new topic in the General Discussion thread.

 

Is there some specific point you are trying to make, Bruce, or is it an early offering for April Fool's Day?  Because if it is the latter, I think you will have trouble making cyber bullying a topic of amusement. 

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Bruce re your post 5: that's my point, you DO have to say in words, which is good because it makes for an ongoing discussion rather than instant dismissal by button.

Edited by Grand Tier Left
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I am puzzled as to why Bruce feels the need to put this as a new topic in the General Discussion thread.

 

Is there some specific point you are trying to make, Bruce, or is it an early offering for April Fool's Day?  Because if it is the latter, I think you will have trouble making cyber bullying a topic of amusement. 

 

Nothing to do with bullying or whatever. As I said at the start: "Likes and Dislikes are flip-sides of the same coin and having one without the other feels limiting."

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Nothing to do with bullying or whatever. As I said at the start: "Likes and Dislikes are flip-sides of the same coin and having one without the other feels limiting."

 

Well, it is an academic discussion, as there is no such facility, and thank goodness for that.

 

Like Janet, I often use the Like button to show I think someone has expressed an opinion that I agree with, but about which I have nothing further to add.

 

On the other hand, if I disagree with a point someone is making, I say so.    Publicly and politely.  And as far as I am concerned, that is surely the whole point of having a forum for discussion in the first place.

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Nothing to do with bullying or whatever. As I said at the start: "Likes and Dislikes are flip-sides of the same coin and having one without the other feels limiting."

I don't agree. I think liking something (or agreeing with a position) without giving a reason is a perfectly simple and straightforward proposition. However, dissent needs to be (and rightly should be) expressed with reasoning otherwise it is empty dissent, so a "dislike" button is inherently wrong IMHO.

 

A: rhubarb, rhubarb.

B: yes, I agree with that sentiment.

C I disagree, because I think it's overcooked.

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Well I suppose that begs the question "should we have a "like" button".  There is no "like" button on another forum that uses the same board software so presumably it is a facility that could be disabled.

 

I use the "like" button to signify that I agree with someone or to show support to someone.  Does this mean I am being considerate in not clogging up a thread with "I agree" or "well done" or am I just being lazy and not writing.

 

Well said GTL.  I will now go and "like" your post!

 

I miss the "like" button on the other forum and wish it were there. I am not in favour of a dislike button.

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I miss the "like" button on the other forum and wish it were there. I am not in favour of a dislike button.

 

I have to say I 'dislike' the 'dislike' option as well.  Too easy an option for far too many I think.  A bit like so much of the background grunting (e.g., 'noise') in PM Questions.  Not 'interesting' at all in my book I fear. 

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Much as I am amused by Bruce's suggestions for a dislike option, I don't really think we need one.

As has been said, to 'like' infers various things, mainly agreement, so no further comment is necessary, unless you wish to. I like to be 'liked' as I imagine we all do, but if my posts are not 'liked' I don't feel unduly upset. If I were to be 'disliked' I would certainly be interested to know why. 

To 'dislike' requires a reason as far as I am concerned. Just 'because' doesn't cut it. We all have opinions and we don't all agree. Some on this forum have very strong views but it should be - as the saying goes - possible to disagree without being disagreeable.

This is a forum for debate as has been said. I wouldn't agree with dislikes being anonymous either. If you have an opinion, you should put your name to it. As for dislike suggestion number 3, perhaps we could have a limit on how many characters one is permitted in a post. This is the case with various other forums and is a good way to concentrate the attention of the poster and avoid waffling. 

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I feel that a 'dislike button' would not benefit this forum. I think that a 'dislike' would feel quite negative to the poster. If you disagree with another poster then you can say so and explain why. As for limiting the length of posts, again I don't feel that this is necessary and a rule to that effect could be circumvented by several shorter posts, unless there were also a limit on the number of characters written by any one poster in a single thread.

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I haven't been a member of the forum for long and found having a like tag unusual, but welcome. I too have used it a couple of times to show comradely support for a post. I guess it is a little lazy, but having been on the receiving end of quite a few likes, it has made me feel at home in these forums. I think a dislike tag is a different "animal" and although I can't quite provide a logic for this, I do think it requires an explanation. Some members could be put off posting even politely worded opinions for fear of the dreaded dislike tag.

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Good stuff and if nothing else it’s clear where sentiments lay and a good example of views being argued about with care and thoughtfulness - which is the tone I sought when I originally started and ran the forum all those years ago. It certainly makes my hair stand on end seeing what happens on many other forums by way of headbutting one another and that is no way forward I think. All that said a "Like" is not agreeing with what somebody said necessarily - it's a general sentiment and could be for all manner of reasons and if a like can be woolly I don't see why a dislike can't be woolly as well. But it is a minefield of social norms and everybody likes to be stroked of course. If nothing else the next time you like something, or the converse, you might have pause for thought and to say why, either way. Saying nice things is pretty easy though - it often takes time to disagree, or say not such nice things about events, which I think is why you see it less often than you might suspect. Should add - just my 2p

Edited by Bruce
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Late to the party …….

I agree with Bruce, YES PLEASE to a dislike button. Why should dislike require any more explanation than like ? It seems to me that like=agree and dislike=disagree, I wouldn't be upset if people disagreed with me - why should I be ? We all see things differently. Maybe "disagree" would be less pejorative than "dislike". As for anonymity issues raised above, most of the posters on here don't use names that make them readily identifiable anyway.

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I've been involved with a lot of forums with very different topics over the years as a moderator, admin, and owner, and I don't think I've ever come across one where the use of the Dislike button didn't cause havoc. It really didn't matter what restrictions were put on it; as soon as someone got a dislike on one of their posts, they got defensive, mistrustful, upset, often left the forum (often after a bunch of drama and accusations), and the whole thing left a bad taste. In some forums the Dislike button was actively used as a bullying weapon while the mods stood by and let it happen; even when it obviously wasn't being used for that purpose, people thought it was, and we used to get furious and/or distraught PMs from members asking the admin team to DO SOMETHING. I particularly remember one smallish forum that was about science and philosophy (where people were presumably trying to let their heads rule their hearts); they felt, despite warnings from more experienced people who'd been there and done that, that a Dislike button would help raise the tone of the discourse, but as soon as one of the admins got a dislike on one of her posts she had a meltdown and threatened to close the forum. The Dislike button disappeared soon after.

 

In just about every case (except for a couple of really vicious forums where the Dislike button was a weapon used to drive away people with contrary views), it was eventually decided to do away with it for the sake of having a functioning and mutually respectful community - often the Like button was done away with as well, for the sake of fairness, but sometimes it was kept because it was seen to be fairly harmless. It didn't matter whether the Dislikes were labelled with the person's name or not, they just caused problems. If the person's name was attached, then it was a good basis for retaliatory action and furious PMs; if it wasn't attached, then people would start guessing who was disliking their posts, and there'd be accusations of anonymous stalking, and the admin and mod team would be called upon constantly to fix things.

 

Honestly, if the problem is that you disagree with the essence of someone's post, this is after all a discussion forum and a respectful dissent in a post is part of what makes a discussion interesting. If you don't think something is on topic, then you can say so or contact a member of the team to move it. Spam can be deleted asap and the spammer banned. If you think someone is being syrupy or curmudgeonly you can say so - but the problem is, a post that seems perfectly OK to most people may well sound syrupy to a curmudgeon and vice versa. At least, if someone keeps getting responses to their posts, from different members, of "that was a bit harsh," they might realize they're coming across a bit strong; if they just get a dislike, they won't know what the problem is (and will quite probably assume that the problem is with the people hitting Dislike).

 

IMO the internet is already fostering intolerance because of the anonymity and the fact that you aren't there in the same room to look someone else in the eye and see what your aggression is doing to them. Being able to casually and anonymously dislike the posts of other people in a community strikes me as another step down that road. I don't care all that much about Like buttons, but Dislike buttons are a rather different animal.

 

OK, sorry, I know this is a bit strong for a newbie, but it's a topic I feel really strongly about. *retires to a corner and waits for all the Dislikes* :P

Edited by Melody
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I always used to think that "Like" and "Dislike" buttons were pretty inane, given how I'd seen them being used on various social media sites (especially with the abuse of the "Like us on Facebook to be in with a chance of winning XYZ" type of marketing).  But various posters on this site have convinced me that there *is* a place for them when you merely want to agree without adding anything, and I now even use them myself on this site occasionally.

 

As has been said, to 'like' infers various things, mainly agreement, so no further comment is necessary, unless you wish to. I like to be 'liked' as I imagine we all do, but if my posts are not 'liked' I don't feel unduly upset. If I were to be 'disliked' I would certainly be interested to know why. 

 

Quite.  Jacqueline, you've reminded me that the forum software keeps a running tally of the number of "Likes" you've received at top right.  If we had a "Dislike" button, would it also have to keep a tally of those, too?  And what effect would that have on your average forum member?  I manage to ignore the "Likes" tally most of the time, but doubt I would feel the same about a "Dislikes" one, especially if I got a high count.

 

As for dislike suggestion number 3, perhaps we could have a limit on how many characters one is permitted in a post. This is the case with various other forums and is a good way to concentrate the attention of the poster and avoid waffling. 

 

I'm not sure how you could set this so that it would cut out waffle while leaving a long, but very thoughtful and well-thought-out post, though?  There's not necessarily a correlation between quality and quantity, in either direction.

 

I think a dislike tag is a different "animal" and although I can't quite provide a logic for this, I do think it requires an explanation. Some members could be put off posting even politely worded opinions for fear of the dreaded dislike tag.

 

I don't agree. I think liking something (or agreeing with a position) without giving a reason is a perfectly simple and straightforward proposition. However, dissent needs to be (and rightly should be) expressed with reasoning otherwise it is empty dissent, so a "dislike" button is inherently wrong IMHO.

 

I have to say I 'dislike' the 'dislike' option as well.  Too easy an option for far too many I think. 

 

I agree with the above, even if I haven't "Liked" them :)

 

I agree with Bruce, YES PLEASE to a dislike button. Why should dislike require any more explanation than like ? It seems to me that like=agree and dislike=disagree, I wouldn't be upset if people disagreed with me - why should I be ? We all see things differently. Maybe "disagree" would be less pejorative than "dislike". As for anonymity issues raised above, most of the posters on here don't use names that make them readily identifiable anyway.

 

Anna, it's not really a question of anonymity, though, because you would presumably see the poster's name by the "Dislike" in the same way that you do for "Likes", and you would be able to link that name with whatever else the poster posted on the forum (even if you might not be able to tackle them in person next time you passed them at the ROH because you couldn't associate their username with the real person :) ). 

I've been a victim of anonymous "thumbs-downs" on a newspaper forum, and it's really not very pleasant.  The case I'm thinking of (tennis yet again - sorry), as far as I remember, was a pretty much factual description which I gave of the course of a match, having just rewatched it (Player A was in the lead, player B caught back up, won the next set and took the lead in the next set - that sort of thing) and EVEN THEN various anonymous people Disliked it.  I was totally bewildered: had they seen the match in some sort of alternate universe where things had happened differently?  Were they just trolling?  Nobody actually posted and said "You've got the score wrong", or "that wasn't how it happened", which I could have accepted: these were just totally anonymous disapprovals from people who might know virtually nothing about the sport, know far more than I ever could, or were somewhere inbetween the two extremes. I've learned now not to go back and see whether anyone has posted replies to things I've posted, but at the time it was very unsettling.

 

IMO the internet is already fostering intolerance because of the anonymity and the fact that you aren't there in the same room to look someone else in the eye and see what your aggression is doing to them. Being able to casually and anonymously dislike the posts of other people in a community strikes me as another step down that road. I don't care all that much about Like buttons, but Dislike buttons are a rather different animal.

 

Very true (although I doubt it would actually apply to most members of this forum).

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Melody, I think that you have put forward a really good argument (based on wide experience) *against* introducing a 'dislike button'. For some reason, 'liking' and 'disliking' posts are not equivalent' presumably because few of us feel comfortable with the word 'dislike' being applied to us, even if it's just being applied to something which we have written; the negative view of our opinions and tastes can feel very personal. Would a button labelled 'disagree' be different? Probably not, despite the slightly less negative overtones.

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As Alison says, the unsettling thing about a 'dislike' is the uncertainty about what is being disliked; it it some factual inaccuracy, your opinions or tastes, your style of writing or what the other person thinks you represent or are like as a person. It's very easy to press a 'dislike' button if you want to be argumentative or unpleasant for the sake of it. Posting something unpleasant or argumentative takes a bit more effort. Can 'dislikes' be moderated as posts can?

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