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Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting

by rozallin (Curate)
on Nov 12, 2004 at 02:06 UTC ( #407243=monkdiscuss: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

I propose that a tickybox (not enabled by default) should be provided in User Preferences to all users at Level 2 or above that allows individuals to decline XP from voting. What this would mean is that users with this option enabled would no longer:
  • Receive 1 XP for voting on a node.
  • Receive 2 XP once a day for being logged in within the past 24 hours.
  • Receive an XP bonus for using up all your votes (up to Level 5).
Instead, gaining (and losing) XP could only be accomplished by others upvoting your nodes.

This would not be retroactive; any XP gained previously from voting would not be deducted from your total XP. It should also be possible to turn this option off if a user decides that they want XP from voting and logging in after all. I also stress that this is a personal choice and as such people should not feel any different to how they feel now if they do not have this new option enabled. Information that a user has decided to decline XP from voting should not be publicly disclosed unless they wish to mention so in their homenode. This should minimise any sense of "elitism" that people whom have the option enabled may develop, although I think this would be extremely unlikely to happen.

As the existing XP of the user is not affected by this and an identical option is available to users on Everything2, which as far as I'm aware uses the exact same Perl-MySQL Web Content-Management System as PerlMonks does, I do not think this would be a difficult to implement should the idea be accepted by the community.

Err... why?

As is evident from the number of discussions held over the years, there is some dis-satisfaction with just how easy it is to get to Saint level without contributing many nodes and how meaningless XP (an imaginary number given out to you by anonymous strangers) is. These discussions have, on the whole, proved fruitless because the suggestions proposed are too either too "extreme" (get rid of XP altogether!) or require the system to be completely re-built with more levels, less votes, less ways to gain XP or combinations and variations of the above. Implementing the proposal I've suggested or something similar would allow those who wish their XP to reflect the quality of their written contributions alone to decline XP from voting whilst allowing others to enjoy the established Voting/Experience System, which means that slightly more people will be happy about it and not whine so much. Maybe.

I'm interested to hear what others think about this idea.

Rozallin J. Thompson
  • Comment on Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting

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Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by tilly (Archbishop) on Nov 12, 2004 at 04:20 UTC
    I'd prefer to see this combined with A Proposal for Additional Levels (which I thought got mostly positive commentary) and say that at certain levels you stop getting XP for various things.

    For instance at Monk (6 in the new system) you'd lose the 50% bonus for voting out, at Vicar (11 in the new system) you'd lose the bonus for signing in, and at Bishop (16 in the new system) you'd lose the bonus for voting on someone else. With tye's XP scheme only 36 users would lose the voting bonus, a few hundred would lose the login bonus, and more people would have the "vote-out" bonus than do now.

    Yes, I know that you wanted a smaller change. But the real issue with a big change is not getting people to agree to it, or getting it implemented, it is agreeing which change to make.

      My general impression is that A Proposal for Additional Levels will happen in some form or another. Main issues are tuits. It could also be argued that I am the reason that it hasnt happened as I have argued rather strongly a number of times that this change should coincide with some other internal changes, partially to make it easier to facilitate and partly to avoid changing the same code twice. My girlfriend is going away for the weekend though so I expect to have a nice of chunk of time this weekend to get my changes to Everything::NodeBase fished and tested and posted for peer review. How long it takes after that depends on how the changes are received. One nice bonus of the changes involved should be speedup, a subject that weve been workingon in the background for some time. In passing I wonder if you or others have noticed any speedup of the site over the past week or so?

      alter ego of demerphq

        I'd support that change. I think your XP and writeups count should reflect your overall contribution to the monestary.


      Examine what is said, not who speaks.
      "Efficiency is intelligent laziness." -David Dunham
      "Think for yourself!" - Abigail        "Time is a poor substitute for thought"--theorbtwo
      "Memory, processor, disk in that order on the hardware side. Algorithm, algorithm, algorithm on the code side." - tachyon
Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by Roy Johnson (Monsignor) on Nov 12, 2004 at 03:21 UTC
    there is some dis-satisfaction with just how easy it is to get to Saint level without contributing many nodes and how meaningless XP (an imaginary number given out to you by anonymous strangers) is
    My impression is that most of the dissatisfaction is about how easy it is for others to get to Saint. Has anyone complained that they are, themselves, progressing too quickly?

    Caution: Contents may have been coded under pressure.
      I am progressing too quickly. Already I have progressed too quickly to pontiff. Now soon I have to be a saint? For what? Too fast, too fast. I can tell you this, I felt a lot better about earning Friar and Abbot, than about being granted Bishop and Pontiff just for clicking vote.

      Snazzy tagline here

      I'm yet another monk who doesn't want to progress too quickly. I don't want to be a Saint: I don't consider my Perl skills warrant it. And for the moment, owing to pressure from other commitments, such skills I have are hardly progressing. It's reached the point where I hesitate to use my votes, for fear of gaining XP.

      I don't usually participate in XP discussions, as I consider them as pointless as XP is meaningless (i.e. other than the fact that a casual participant might think, 'Aha, X's solution must be the best way to do it, since X has a higher XP rating than Y or Z!')

      So ++rozallin ... Oops!

Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by dimar (Curate) on Nov 12, 2004 at 03:18 UTC
    ... allow those who wish their XP to reflect the quality of their written contributions alone ...

    Sounds like a nice wish. It's hard to imagine any single system that will please everyone though. It's like Universities that try alternate grading systems. You can change it around but you can still find at least *someone* dissatisfied with their 'grades'. Nevertheless, it is a nice wish.

      The fact that the number of simultaneously pleasable people is less than the total number of people in existance, is rather thin excuse for not trying to please a maximum number of contributors to a website.

      Also, you are missing the point, which is that the system can contain seperate subsystems, allowing the meaning of XP to be more personallized.

      THat's different than a University, where the whole point is to use the exact same system for everybody so that people can be stuffed into little pigeonholes by pointy haired managers. PerlMonks isn't used that way, we can afford to reward contributors by honoring individualism.

      It's not as if, the XP here is expected to reflect any kind of standardized system of rating the users' Perl skills. Rather, XP just reflects trivial things like, how often you hang out in the catbox and click "vote." And that's fine. But other things are fine, too. There is, after all, more than one way to do it. Or at least, wouldn't it be nice if there was?

      Snazzy tagline here

        None of the issues you address here is inconsistent with the original (very specific) point I eluded to earlier, so I will have to chalk up any (apparent) differences of opinion to The Law of Inconsistent Assumptions and leave it at that. I don't dispute any of your remarks, opinions or statements of principle about 'experience points'.

        My only (very specific) point was it would be nice to have a system that would

        ... allow those who wish their XP to reflect the quality of their written contributions alone ...
        to do so.

        If this is indeed the goal, however, all it takes to upset that goal is for *anyone* to have a subjective belief that "my XP score is not commensurate with the quality of my written contributions" ... once that happens, all the other issues become secondary ... it all boils down to how do you let someone 'contest' an XP score (or change it by individual fiat) ... so that the external numbers match up with their own perception of 'quality' ... but since we know TMTOWTDI, there will always be different ways to define 'quality' and therefore, it is just a matter of which 'anonymous stranger(s)' get(s) to dictate (the publically visible) score.

        No one is preventing me from keeping my own *personalized* XP system, honoring individuality, or eschewing pointy-haired-pidgeon-holing-elitism. I just get to do it in my head instead of on your computer screen.

        Problem solved.

        the system can contain seperate subsystems, allowing the meaning of XP to be more personalized.
        It is often (and truly) said that XP don't mean enough that they should be taken seriously. That doesn't stop people from expressing the desire that they should be made meaningful, and there seems to be desire to make that happen. I think having a "personalized meaning" falls somewhat short of that. Here are a couple ideas I think could move things in that direction.
        Drop the random element
        Randomness reduces information, it doesn't contribute to it.
        Keep separate scores
        Number of writeups is already tracked. Total number of votes cast and net number of upvotes minus downvotes received can be derived from things that are currently tracked. Each level could have a minimum score requirement for each category (as well as a total score requirement), to ensure well-rounded monks. At higher levels, the minima for upvotes and writeups would get higher, and those for voting would level out or even drop off.

        Bonus things like casting all your votes or appearing in the Daily Best wouldn't have minima, but would contribute to your total.

        Caution: Contents may have been coded under pressure.
Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by tmoertel (Chaplain) on Nov 12, 2004 at 04:00 UTC
      jcwren wrote a script that will do this for a user, provided of course you know their username and password :-)

      The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing -- Edmund Burke
Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by Aighearach (Initiate) on Nov 12, 2004 at 03:50 UTC
    I would even support this retroactivly, even if only as a one-time way to grandfather in existing users. Even if it meant recalculating XP totals in an approximate way.

    Yes it was orignially the same codebase, perlmonks was forked off of everything2, and there have been many new features traded in both directions since. I would be happy to contribute any changes, if the dev people didn't have time for it. THough I doubt that's ever the case around here! lol

    Snazzy tagline here
Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by jbrugger (Parson) on Jun 25, 2005 at 22:33 UTC
    The thing i like about the XP system, is that it actually works!
    Everyone (including me) has critics about it, but it still keeps me enslaved in a certin way, even though this is just another website. I don't want to be voted down for example.
    Since there is so mutch talk about it, i suggest we don't change a thing about them, and for the ones who really don't like them, just ignore then!
    He! wasn't this site not about helping eatch other with problems concerning Perl, learning about Pearl and best Pearl practices? for me it does a great job, and the xp-system is just a way to keep me extra motivated. Don't take it all to serious! have fun and keep the monestary going!

    "We all agree on the necessity of compromise. We just can't agree on when it's necessary to compromise." - Larry Wall.
Re: Proposal: Option to Decline XP from voting
by kurt_kober (Chaplain) on Nov 17, 2004 at 19:08 UTC
    How about something in addition to XP, like PQ, participation quotient. This could still use the normal XP but factor in the number of posts + their average reputation and give a better idea of how active or valued a member that particular monk is. This could probably work with data that already exists and wouldn't change the meaning of XP in midstream making it different for some people than for others. Not that XP has a whole lot of meaning anyway...

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