I’m not personally a great fan of the concept of down-votes, but I know people want to express a view and I understand they play a useful role. For me, the upvotes say enough and dreadful posts can be flagged for closure.

What I think is really unhelpful is when a question / answer receives down-votes with no feedback to the poster. Very few people intentionally post something unhelpful. What seems like a lousy post to an experienced user may not be so obvious to the novice. My personal mission is to try to get more people using Ubuntu and I think we risk putting people off by down-voting what they think is a reasonable question.

The tiny negative effect on your own reputation is not a deterrent to trigger-happy down-voting.

On the basis that everything we do in the site should make it better, would it be possible to mandate some kind of feedback to say why the post needs improvement when down-voting?

I don’t know if this is possible in SE, but I think it would be a very positive step. (I’m also interested in the irony of the number of down-votes my criticism of down-votes gets!!)

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  • Thank you @NotTheDr01ds & muru - yes, answered very nicely there and I take all the points. Very annoying because I thought I’d searched before posting!
    – Will
    Commented Oct 19, 2021 at 5:21
  • No worries. Just curious - Did you search from the Stack Exchanges search tool or from a search engine? I find just putting the word "Stack" in front of a Google query gives me (far, far) better results than the built-in search. Commented Oct 19, 2021 at 12:17
  • @NotTheDr01ds - I searched using the built-in tool - good tip (re Google), thank you. I think the search I did gave several pages of results - I suspect the Q & A you referenced was there was buried in 15 pages of answers if I'd looked more carefully! Thanks again.
    – Will
    Commented Oct 19, 2021 at 13:06


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