I'm seeing a lot of unwarranted (IMO) down-moderation lately, mostly on posts that express a minority opinion or that question a majority opinion (judging minority/majority based on discussion context). As a result, there are many posts ranked -1 or 0 that probably deserve higher scores.
I'd like to remind moderators that you're supposed to "Concentrate more on promoting than demoting". In the meantime, I'm going to spend all my mod points on posts that I think have been modded down unfairly. I encourage others to consider spending some mod points in this fashion as well.
To keep people with this mindset happy, and to make it clear what moderation is not, maybe there should be a completely separate system that allows any registered user at any time to click "agree" or "disagree" on any comment.
This could be shown as thumbs up and thumbs down icons with little numbers next to them.
Also, there could be a similar system, allowing us to "thank" people for their comments.
Now, this does overlap with the moderation system somewhat, because every +1 moderation is effectively the moderator thanking the commenter for a worthwhile comment. But we could still have both. Unlike moderation, any registered user at any time could click "thank" on any comment.
Of course, it should be possible in a user's preferences to make these 3 fields hidden.
These are both good ideas. I prefer the first one though (agree/disagree alongside moderation). It would be very interesting to see a "+5 Insightful" comment that is 90% disagree, for example. Being the kind of person that I am, those are probably the types of comments I would seek out when I'm reading or participating in a discussion. And, I just realized that this is why I'm so against using mod-points to vote down comments based on agreement / disagreement: it penalizes what I would consider to be the most valuable comments of all, the ones that would probably teach me the most.
It would be very interesting to see a "+5 Insightful" comment that is 90% disagree, for example
I agree, this is a great idea. It can provide a way to vote down w/o actually voting down, which seems to be quite taboo. You're right, sometimes comments that are voted down and subsequently buried can be valuable (which is why I usually browse at -1 raw, uncut).
Now the question is, what are the chances NCommander can front-burner code to do this?
And it should be very clearly explained why the "agree"/"disagree" system is completely separate from the moderation system.
And the very first time you are allocated mod points, you should be forced to click that you understand the moderation guidelines.