Cap'n Refsmmat

User Reputation System

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As some of you have noticed recently, we now have a user reputation system enabled on SFN. We hope that the reputation system will help improve the quality of posts on SFN, and encourage people to make better posts in the future.

 

At the bottom of each of your posts (but not those of anyone else) you will see a small icon indicating the number of reputation points you have (the more, the better). You can give someone reputation points by using the small icon in the corner of their posts (reputation.gif).

 

Please note that the reputation system only allows you to give positive reputation - thus, it's more of a "thank you" button for helpful posts. We're not sure if we should allow negative reputation - it caused trouble the last time we implemented the system - but we'll see how things go with positive only first. If you have any further ideas for reputation, feel free to post them here.

 

Have fun.

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At the bottom of each of your posts (but not those of anyone else) you will see a small icon indicating the number of reputation points you have

 

Did you mean for the reputation points to be private? If so then I should probably tell you that the reputation points of any member are visible in their profile.

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What's the deal about "spreading reputation around"? I noticed two concise helpful posts just now by the same user, and tried to applaud both. But on the second go it said "you must spread some reputation around before you give some to [name] again".

 

I can see the point of that, prevents indiscriminate applause. But how many other people's posts do I need to find I approve of before I can get back to the one I want to applaud?

 

If it is 2 or 3, that might work, but if it's 5 then I will probably forget where the post was, or what thread it was in, before I can get back to it. Process becomes somewhat timeconsuming and cumbersome then.

 

Can anyone tell me what the "spread" parameter is?

 

At the bottom of each of your posts (but not those of anyone else) you will see a small icon indicating the number of reputation points you have (the more, the better)...

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It's set to 2. It's designed to prevent me from giving, say, Phi 42,324 reputation points in one evening to make him have the most reputation on the forum.

 

And yeah, the first post is a bit outdated -- reputations are now totally public. We're also considering allowing negative reputation points so reputation can be used as a sort of shame system.

 

I'd also like to make the Add Reputation button more obvious. I'll work on that.

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We're also considering allowing negative reputation points so reputation can be used as a sort of shame system.

 

Not that you asked, but my take is that this leads to more problems than it solves. Neg rep makes bad blood, and inspires retaliation/retribution.

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Not that you asked, but my take is that this leads to more problems than it solves. Neg rep makes bad blood, and inspires retaliation/retribution.

 

I agree at least in general. Haven't thought about it and can't say with confidence what the harmful side-effects would be. But suspect anonymous (un)popularity points of any sort are apt to siphon attention away from the business of learning, making accurate statements, presenting reasons and evidence, distinguishing what's subjective or speculative and what's not----group dynamics can distract from the main business in other words. Suspect negative likely to cause additional diminished function.

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How can I get a listing of which post and who gave us a + or - ??

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You can't. Giving members the ability to do that runs the risk of creating targetted animosity and vengeful posting. That's not what we want. The purpose of the reputation points is to encourage members to post quality material, not to pit them against one another.

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Hold on. If the object of the exercise is to encourage post quality, how can I know which posts have received positive or negative rep? It's one thing if the rep has been applied within say 24 hours, since one may well see the rep while moving through an active thread. But I've wasted time going back through four days of my posts trying to figure out what three people had found so endearing and finding nothing. I pay attention to what is that gets me positive rep and try to move my posts in that direction, but that won't work if I don't know which ones they are.

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I don't see how not being explicitly notified as to which of your posts gained rep points really negates what I've said. To my mind, the types of posts that lead to positive and negative rep points are made fairly obvious by reading threads and observing where membership has doled them out. I don't think you don't need exact knowledge of where you've gained or lost points to have that sort of understanding.

 

Regardless, I think you've taken what I've said for something else. You seem to be suggesting that the point of the reputation system is so you can engineer posts to tell people what they want to hear rather than what you actually want to say. I have no doubt that some people use it to that end and that it works for that purpose. In my opinion, however, I think that the intention was and is to motivate members to make posts that are thoughtful, well researched and well written.

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Which is exactly how I would like to use them: to find the way of expressing what I shall express regardless in a manner that generates the most positive reaction that expression of that thought can generate. (Or that equally lets me know I have so disgruntled someone they feel need to give negative rep. If I know which post was frowned on I can reflect on it and see if I could/should have expressed the same thoughts differently.)

 

To my mind, the types of posts that lead to positive and negative rep points are made fairly obvious by reading threads and observing where membership has doled them out.
And I have just explained in my prior post that this often fails to work. It is irrelevant if you think it should work - this member is telling you it doesn't work for me and I regret it doesn't work for me. If the system can not be adjusted to allow one to see which posts were repped, that's OK, but please don't try to persuade me that this is ideal. For me it isn't.

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Which is exactly how I would like to use them: to find the way of expressing what I shall express regardless in a manner that generates the most positive reaction that expression of that thought can generate. (Or that equally lets me know I have so disgruntled someone they feel need to give negative rep. If I know which post was frowned on I can reflect on it and see if I could/should have expressed the same thoughts differently.)

 

That's a fair point. Still, I think you can glean just as much through experience in reading threads and watching where the rep points go as you can in being notified where yours are received and lost.

 

And I have just explained in my prior post that this often fails to work. It is irrelevant if you think it should work - this member is telling you it doesn't work for me and I regret it doesn't work for me. If the system can not be adjusted to allow one to see which posts were repped, that's OK, but please don't try to persuade me that this is ideal. For me it isn't.

 

Ophiolite, I didn't approach this thread from my position as staff, I approached it as a member; I'd be grateful if you could address my posts as such. I will also say that it's not my place to comment on what can and cannot be altered within the software the site uses. For that, you'd have to speak to Cap'n.

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Fair enough. I've misinterpreted your position. When a member of staff posts in the Forum Announcements section the default position would be to understand they are speaking officially. I recognise that within the forum at large a "Mod Note" will be indicated, but such did not seem to be the case within the Announcements section, else the Captain's opening post would have been so designated. I'll keep it mind for the future.

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May i ask why neg rep is so limited? Only one generally results in wanting to save it for the worst posts but once you read past a bad post and go to others to make sure there isn't another really bad post you get side tracked and don't go back. Or sometimes you give a neg rep and then find another post that is worse. i think we should have at least 3 neg reps a day.

 

Having said that I give out pos rep quite a bit, i like to encourage those who are giving it good go. I run out of pos rep regularly...

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In previous incarnations of the reputation system, we found that negative reputation tended to cause animosity and anger. People hated getting negative points, and would whine and moan when they thought it was unfair. So we've limited the amount of negativity possible.

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I didn't realize members can't see which posts are receiving rep points. What's the purpose in that? I agree with Ophiolite, because it's hard to know how your posts are being perceived when people use the rep system instead of posting just to praise or admonish. Cap'n, is it possible to allow them to see the rep points for a particular post without allowing them to see who gives them?

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I didn't realize members can't see which posts are receiving rep points. What's the purpose in that? I agree with Ophiolite, because it's hard to know how your posts are being perceived when people use the rep system instead of posting just to praise or admonish. Cap'n, is it possible to allow them to see the rep points for a particular post without allowing them to see who gives them?

 

We can.

 

I think what Ophiolite was talking about is getting +'s on old posts and having no clue as to where you amassed certain points.

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We can.

 

I think what Ophiolite was talking about is getting +'s on old posts and having no clue as to where you amassed certain points.

Good. Thanks for the explanation.

 

It would be great to be able to click on your reputation score and filter the posts that received them, but we'll have to wait for Cap'n to tell us what's possible.

 

We've actually been discussing negative rep points in the Staff sections recently. I don't like the fact that having only one point a day often causes members to make judgements that seem juxtaposed to the rep system's intent. I can also see why less focus on negativity is important.

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I don't like the fact that having only one point a day often causes members to make judgements that seem juxtaposed to the rep system's intent.

 

So you would prefer no limit?

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We can.

 

I think what Ophiolite was talking about is getting +'s on old posts and having no clue as to where you amassed certain points.

That's it exactly. If one gets rep for an active thread the same day, one usually notices it within that day. Once the post has scrolled of the current page, or at least far to the top it becomes practically invisible. Members who have perhaps entered the thread for the first time and are reading from the front may encounter an old post and give it rep. On another forum today, for example, I gave positive rep to a post over a month old.

 

To Moontanman I vey much like the restriction on negative rep. It constrains one from acting in haste. Some users even abuse the current system.

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So you would prefer no limit?

Why would you assume I want to leap to the other end of the spectrum? Do you think I exhibit extremist tendencies?

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No, I was just trying to understand what you meant here;

I don't like the fact that having only one point a day often causes members to make judgements that seem juxtaposed to the rep system's intent.

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