For the sake of argument below, a user showing negative behaviour on this site is called a "Troll" and a user exhibiting positive behaviour a "Unicorn".
I've been pondering about creating a niceness system that would allow the trolls on this site to handle the trolls, the unicorns handle the unicorns and the neutrals handle everyone if they choose so! :-)
The long version:
Today, we only have a single type of reputation on the system that is based on knowledge only!
I've been thinking of a system where we add an additional kind of rep that is based on a user's "niceness" where everyone starts at 0 where:
- Past behaviour does not count
Any behaviour on the site will have an influence on a user's "niceness" score completely separate from a user's "knowledge" score (today a.k.a "Reputation") and would allow all of the existing site features to have an influence on a user's niceness score as well:
- spam flags
- rude/offensive flags
- Chat bans
- User bans
We use a scoring system that is similar to downvoting a question or an answer:
- downvoting a user's niceness score will give a penalty of -2 to the downvoted user
- will affect the downvoter with -1 (as the fact of downvoting isn't "nice" neither).
- Upvoting a niceness score will remain similar to upvoting a question: no score change for the upvoting user, only for the upvoted one.
the niceness interactivity is based on 2 signed INTs denominating:
- User's niceness score
- User's niceness threshold
- Allowing an adaptive system to naturally evolve over time depending on MIN(niceness) and MAX(niceness) on a particular site.
Once we have that in place, users can start up/downvoting both according to the question / answer separate from the user's behaviour
Calling a spade, a spade has some additional fringe benefits:
- Users can choose which kind of users they want to interact with on the site according to the niceness they have (and that is what the niceness threshold is used for):
☑ I want to interact with users who are unicorns :-D
☑ I want to interact with users who are nice :-)
☑ I want to interact with users who are neutral :-|
☑ I don't mind interacting with users who are a bit naughty :-(
☑ I don't mind interacting with trolls ;-(
Users that do not completely overlap with a user's individual sense of niceness will show up in light grey if there is only a little difference and be completely invisible to a user including their/your questions/answers/comments!
This is not a complete overhaul of the way the SE network works today:
- Very negative answers are shown in grey already
- Deleted answers are invisible as well. (except to 10K+ users)
- Additional storage capacity in the SE network's DB is negligible (~60 MB at the time of this writing, excluding indexes)
- We have to do something as the sites grow and we're seen as not very "welcoming" to new users
- the above compartementalises the users according to their behaviour.
- We could create an additional privilege that allows very trusted users to see the niceness score for all users (50K? halfway to 100K and the t-shirt, hat and stickers?) and to the other users (except mods) these scores would be invisible.
Of course, a troll user limiting itself to interacting only with nice people will put itself in the unfortunate position of seeing very little on this site but then that's their own personal and subjective freedom of choice!
Thoughts? Remarks? Improvements?
P.S. Please don't just downvote: :-) leave a comment at a minimum. A well-funded answer is preferred... 0:-)