What about additional post reactions other than "like"?

In another thread

I’ve been thinking along these lines for a while now, too. Not so much that we need a distinction between like and love (although I suppose he’s right about the icon being a misnomer) but “like” really is too over-broad.

I’ve seen Jeff arguing for less clutter and against “one liner”-type comments, so I think an array of standard response buttons could reduce those posts and allow us to easily support our fellow mutants succinctly. The icons on the buttons then show up in the post with numbers next to them. clicking the posted icons drops down a list of avatars. I think that grouping all these under “likes” in the user profile’s response drop-down is probably OK, though. Of course, users can click all that apply to a given post. These are the obvious ones that I’ve been able to come up with, but I’m sure there’s other good ones:

  • “agree” (then an optional “add caveat/expand?” button pops up and takes user to standard reply field with a header that indicates “caveat to xxx post,” similar to quote reply)
  • “came here to say this”/“beat me to it”
  • “your post made me laugh”
  • “best in thread” (only available to each user once per thread, duh. can be retracted and applied to a later post?)
  • “joy”(I think the icon should be hands high-fiving)
  • “I know that feel”
  • “thank you” (can be used to acknowledge a response to you, or in the sense of “that opinion needed to be expressed”)
  • “sad”

Particularly useful for “sad”. When you want to support a poster for saying something that provoked an emotional response, “like” is just not the right sentiment, and wording a full-blown reply can be really awkward for both you and that poster. When @Mister44 said in a recent thread that a funeral home donated a casket for his sister’s kid that only lived one day, it damn near floored me. I wanted to hit “like” as a show of support, but that word is crass in this case, and I had nothing to contribute in terms of an actual reply.

Note no “disagree.” That is too similar to a downvote and does not promote the community. Disagreement is more valid as a deliberate, well worded reply.

I don’t know how feasible making these are, I get that it would probably be a lot of work and “easier said than done.” And it does come with issues as far as where to put them/clutter, but I think it would get rid of the clutter of all these ideas expressed as full-blown replies. Would anyone actually use them or is it just overblown useless features? All I know is that personally, I often wish I had these when I use BBS. I use “like” for a lot of these ideas grudgingly/not really correctly since it’s my only option.


This really violates the “don’t make me think” rule.

Instead of a simple:

Do I like this post?

It becomes:

Do I like this post? Does it make me laugh? Do I simply agree with it? Is it the best post in the topic? What do I feel while reading this? Joy? Sadness? Thanks? Commiseration? Some inchoate combination of all the above?

That’s paralysis. Putting too many decisions in front of people is much, much worse than asking them one simple question: do you like this?


Slashdot’s moderation system works something like this, but only moderators get to rate comments. Moderators are randomly selected from those who checked a box in their preferences to say they’re willing to moderate. You randomly get a number of mod points that you can use to mod a comment interesting, funny, insightful, offtopic, flamebait, and I think a couple other things. The mod points only last for a certain amount of time as well. The smartest thing they did with that system though is if you’ve already posted in a thread, you can’t moderate comments in it. And if you moderate a comment in a thread and then comment yourself in that thread, your moderation is undone. So you’re either a commenter in a thread or a moderator.

Hmm. I’ve used slashdot for a long time (UID=2054). I don’t often use my modpoints, even though I’m consistently in the moderation pool. If I care enough to mod, I care enough to post.

And there’s a third rail in slashdot politics which will result in moderation wars if you’re lucky, or triple “flamebaits” if you’re not.

If we’re going to bother with ‘likes’ at all, I would like thumbs up and down. I’d to be able to indicate disapproval as well as approval.

Maybe an option to hide (but not delete) posts (and their replies?) below a certain threshold (-5)?

How about a ‘meh’ button?


If you won’t want the user to become paralyzed with options, then perhaps the question should be “Is ‘like’ the appropriate verb for this action?” Maybe it needs to be something more neutral, such as agree or support or interested in. Or even +1, as a reader-supplied modifier to the post’s actual sentiment. Because like @noahdjango implied, if you wouldn’t go up to someone’s face and say “I like what you’ve done here” then you shouldn’t be liking that same action/experience/encounter/dialogue when they write about it on the internet.

1 Like

Perhaps “I agree” rather than" Like"?

1 Like

“There are lots of words, and you can use some of them over again.” (we miss you, Unka Walt)

If you have something more to say than “me too”, it’s probably worth posting a reply rather than pushing a button.

well, I guess that’s true, but you also provide those same users with a reply feature which allows them to type every word in every human language, so isn’t that paralyzing? beyond just word-choosing paralysis, a post may not receive the support the community is actually feeling for it if the would-be responder doesn’t want to litter up the thread with a common one-or-two-word reply. I dunno, maybe that’s reaching, but I definitely feel that way many times.

In my head, this idea will streamline the process of commenting and replace all the repetitive, commonly used comments with tiny icons (that could all be hidden on the posted end until a user mouses-over the heart, or something). quick replies to posts that still give a poster good feedback seem more useful. again: in my head, it seems that way. but if the community doesn’t like it or doesn’t feel they’ll use it, then I guess it’s not that great of an idea and I’m just weird, which is OK. i don’t mean to be the “tell you what you oughta do with this here Discourse thing, i’ve got it all figured out. stick with me, kid, you’ll be fartin’ through silk.” guy. well, maybe I am that guy. but it was cool of you to showcase my idea in a new thread, thanks! :^)

How does the “don’t make me think” rule help with nuance?

For the sake of real estate on the screen maybe just a few options make sense.
Agree/disagree might be a nice up down. . Love/best in thread would be cool. Flag for mods. Permalink. Reply. I’m not sure how much more room there is.

I think the idea of a “meh” button is hilarious. It could do nothing at all.


I “like” plenty of comments that I disagree with, for being well-worded.

1 Like

I view Slashdot as the Galapagos Islands of social software design. It’s a weird little cul-de-sac that genetically influenced almost nothing… for good reason.

We don’t do downvotes in systems based on opinion. My post on which X-Man is coolest cannot be incorrect. Neither can yours.

Well, no, because typing words in a box is a single choice. Either you type words in the box, or you don’t.

As for verbiage, we do want to support changing the verb “like” to whatever you prefer. Though I would strongly recommend against agree for the reason @echolocatechoco described, you could imagine…

  • +1 (if you believe in the world-changing fury of Google Plus, which is sweeping like a tsunami wave over Facebook, completely displacing it as I type… wait, what?)
  • recommend
  • interesting
  • support

those should all be possible, though I would argue you’re just playing semantics to no real effect. If you can’t get it together enough to muster an “I like this”, I doubt changing it to “I {verb} this” is going to have any effect on that.

(There was also some discussion of letting people annotate posts and say “I like this particular sentence, but the rest of the post can go hang itself” but annotations are kind of insane OCD even for the web.)

I’d have to go with “support,” then.

and Nightcrawler was best, no question.

If it’s not Gambit, you’re clearly mistaken.

In which case, upvotes/likes are no more valid. Why have those?

I’d go with number one or number four :wink:

A friend once proposed an ‘I’m with ya, bro and/or bro-ette’, but that’s a bit wordy.

Because while there’s still a small popularity contest component to watch for (and you can’t remove that without removing humans), not using downvotes means that you don’t have to worry about brilliant but unpopular posts completely countering each other.

That, and people can’t bury thoughts they don’t like because they’re unpopular. And well worded, excellent posts that go against the grain are the last things we want to bury, or even let people THINK they can bury.

Reddit does pretty much just that.


Right, which is why I opposed downvotes!