MEEP: Voting Policies

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  • bsh1
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    About MEEP

    MEEPs (Moderation Engagement and Enactment Processes) are official comment periods where moderation proposes and solicits feedback on various potential moderation policies. MEEPs allow moderation to pose questions about moderation policy to the site usership and empower the site usership to either ratify or reject moderation's proposals. In order for a moderation proposal to be ratified, at least 10 users must have expressed a preference on the policy in question, and more than a majority of those expressing a preference must be in agreement. That means, in a MEEP with 10 voters, the minimum threshold for a binding result is 7-3; similarly, in a MEEP with 19 voters, the minimum threshold for a binding result is 11-8. This ensures that the outcome of the process reflects the consensus of a significant number of site users. If a MEEP result is not binding/valid, moderation will maintain the pre-MEEP status quo, whatever that happens to be.

    This MEEP will be open for user votes until 11:45pm, EST, on 3/16/19. This voting period may be extended by up to twelve hours if there are fewer than 10 votes on any of the specific questions put to the usership. Any extension will apply to all questions. Votes cast after the deadline will not be considered. 

    The Proposals

    Below is an enumerated list of the content to be voted on. A brief explanation of the proposal is included below each proposal as well.

    1. Should there be additional criteria that a debater voter needs to meet in order to be eligible to vote on a debate?

    In light of recent problems regarding illegitimate voting, vote bombing, and self-voting, it may be the case that it is not prudent to give every account the power to vote. This question is asking whether there should be eligibility requirements imposed on accounts in order for them to vote. Users who vote without being eligible to do so would have their wrongful votes removed from the debate, and would receive a warning. Further attempts to cast votes while ineligible could be met with additional sanctions from moderation. If you vote "no" to this proposal, you are voting against the imposition of additional eligibility requirements (and, while unnecessary, you may still rank the plans). If you vote "yes," please rank the five plans for additional eligibility requirements, which are listed below, in order of preference (with 1 being your first choice of implementation):

    • Plan A - Super Light: Accounts must have read the site's COC (which includes the site's voting policies)
    • Plan B - Light: Accounts must have read the site's COC AND completed at least 1 non-troll debate without forfeiting OR posted 50 forum posts
    • Plan C - Medium: Accounts must have read the site's COC AND completed at least 2 non-troll debates without any forfeits OR posted 100 forum posts
    • Plan D - Heavy: Accounts must have read the site's COC AND completed at least 3 debates non-troll debates without any forfeits OR posted 200 forum posts
    • Plan E - Super Heavy: Accounts must have read the site's COC AND passed a competency review conducted by moderation AND completed at least 3 debates non-troll debates without any forfeits OR posted 200 forum posts
    2. Should the COC (Site Rules) Section 1, Subsection 3, Part 10 be repealed?

    This section of the COC prohibits the use of profanity without asterisks. This portion of the COC is not enforced unless the profanity is being used as a personal attack, in which case it falls under a different section of the COC. While I.3.10 is not enforced, profanity is treated as an aggravating factor when determining punishment in more serious cases. A "yes" vote would repeal this section of the COC, while a "no" vote would maintain the status quo.

    3. Should COC (Voting Policy) Section 1, Subsection A be replaced with a different text?

    A "yes" vote would replace the current voting standard for argument points with the following text: "In order to award argument points, a voter must explicitly, and in the text of their RFD, perform the following tasks: (a) survey the main arguments and counterarguments presented in the debate, (b) weigh those arguments against each other (or explain why certain arguments need not be weighed based on what transpired within the debate itself), and (c) explain how, through the process of weighing, they arrived at their voting decision with regard to assigning argument points. Weighing entails analyzing how the relative strength of one argument or set of arguments outweighed (that is, out-impacted) and/or precluded another argument or set of arguments. Weighing requires analyzing and situating arguments and counterarguments within the context of the debate as a whole." A "no" vote would retain the current phrasing of the text.

    4. Should COC (Voting Policy) Section 1, Subsection B be replaced with a different text?

    A "yes" vote would replace the current voting standard for sources points with the following text: "In order to award sources points, a voter must explicitly, and in the text of their RFD, perform the following tasks: (a) explain, on balance, how each debater's sources impact the debate, (b) directly evaluate at least one source in particular cited in the debate and explain how it either bolstered or weakened the argument it was used to support, and (c) must explain how and why one debater's use of sources overall was superior to the other's. Mere appeals to quantity are not sufficient to justify awarding sources points." A "no" vote would retain the current phrasing of the text.
  • bsh1
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    5. Should COC (Voting Policy) Section 1, Subsection C be replaced with a different text?

    A "yes" vote would replace the current voting standard for spelling and grammar points with the following text: "In order to award spelling and grammar (S&G) points, a voter must explicitly, and in the text of their RFD, perform the following tasks: (a) give specific examples of S&G errors, (b) explain how these errors were excessive, and (c) compare each debater's S&G from the debate. S&G errors are considered excessive when they render arguments incoherent or incomprehensible." A "no" vote would retain the current phrasing of the text.

    6. Should COC (Voting Policy) Section 1, Subsection D be replaced with a different text?

    A "yes" vote would replace the current voting standard for conduct points with the following text: "In order to award conduct points, a voter must explicitly, and in the text of their RFD, perform the following tasks: (a) provide specific references to instances of poor conduct which occurred in the debate, (b) demonstrate how this poor conduct was either excessive, unfair, or in violation of mutually agreed upon rules of conduct pertaining to the text of the debate, and (c) compare each debater's conduct from the debate. Misconduct is excessive when it is extremely frequent and/or when it causes the debate to become incoherent or extremely toxic. In the case of awarding conduct points solely on the basis of forfeits, there is an exception to these steps: a debater may award conduct points for forfeited rounds, but only if one debater forfeited half or more of their rounds or if the voter also awards argument points (or explains their decision not to award argument points in a manner which meets the argument points voting standards)." A "no" vote would retain the current phrasing of the text.

    (Note: questions 3-6 are not intended to substantially alter current standards, but rather to provide clearer guidelines for and wording of existing standards in order to facilitate voter compliance with voting regulations. However, some slight alterations in vote moderation policy may be implicated by these changes if they are adopted.)

    Please vote "Yes" or "No" to each question, clearly indicating which question you are responding to when you do so. If you vote "Yes" to Question 1, please rank the plans as instructed. Thank you for your participation in this MEEP process!

  • Swagnarok
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    1. Yes--Plan D, though of course there's an obvious limit to how far the COC requirement can actually be enforced. Since the requirements for vote quality are already quite high I don't have a problem with a 200 post rule, though of course there are here and have been on DDO plenty of people who inflated their own post count in a short time via stuff like the "Last Comment Wins" thread or whatnot. A debate requirement is likewise somewhat meaningless because those debates might simply be some 1-round camaraderie where they post one short paragraph of juvenile banter masquerading flimsily as social commentary as their "argument". But at least Plan D would slow these people down a little bit, or so we can hope. I would also recommend a probationary period of at least one week on the Site before "new users" be allowed to vote, but w/e.

    2. No. There are people whose consciences are sensitive about an excess of unfiltered profanity but who would like to participate on this Site. You wouldn't think that an asterisk substitution here and there would really make a difference to them, but sometimes it does. You never know. The human mind is an interesting thing. Granted, this rule was never enforced all that stringently in the first place; obviously there are people who say things like "you're nothing but a *redacted* tool" and nothing happens. But it's like anything else: repealing a rule that is enforced some of the time, and then publicly announcing that such is the case, only makes things worse.

    3. Abstain

    4. Abstain

    5. Abstain

    6. Abstain
  • RationalMadman
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    1. Plan C
    2. Y
    3. Y
    4. Y
    5. N - too lenient
    6. Y


  • Ragnar
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    For viewing clarity, the current vs the new COC lines are as follow:

    S&G Old:
    To sufficiently ground awarding S&G points, a voter must start by giving specific references to the mistakes made by the debater(s). More importantly though, these spelling and/or grammatical mistakes need to be excessive. A good rule of thumb is that if the spelling or grammar render the arguments incoherent or incomprehensible, the coherent side is awarded these points. While this can be somewhat subjective, it should be clear from the vote why a given argument is difficult to read, and not just how many errors a given side has made. There must be some comparative analysis between both debaters’ S&G.
    S&G New:
    In order to award spelling and grammar (S&G) points, a voter must explicitly, and in the text of their RFD, perform the following tasks: (a) give specific examples of S&G errors, (b) explain how these errors were excessive, and (c) compare each debater's S&G from the debate. S&G errors are considered excessive when they render arguments incoherent or incomprehensible." A "no" vote would retain the current voting standards for spelling and grammar points.
    ---

    Conduct Old:
    To sufficiently ground awarding conduct points, the voter must provide specific references to the instances of poor conduct in their vote. There are two additional necessary criteria for conduct points to be sufficiently grounded. One debater must have been excessively rude, profane, or unfair, or broke the debate rules, or forfeited one or more rounds in the debate without reasonable and given cause. There must be some comparatively analysis between both debaters’ conduct. The second pertains specifically to awarding conduct solely for forfeited rounds. If this is the case, then the voter must also explain arguments, unless the debate is forfeited by half or more of its rounds. Then and only then would a vote that awards only conduct points be acceptable.
    Conduct New:

    In order to award conduct points, a voter must explicitly, and in the text of their RFD, perform the following tasks: (a) provide specific references to instances of poor conduct which occurred in the debate, (b) demonstrate how this poor conduct was either excessive, unfair, or in violation of mutually agreed upon rules of conduct pertaining to the text of the debate, and (c) compare each debater's conduct from the debate. Misconduct is excessive when it is extremely frequent and/or when it causes the debate to become incoherent or extremely toxic. In the case of awarding conduct points solely on the basis of forfeits, there is an exception to these steps: a debater may award conduct points for forfeited rounds, but only if one debater forfeited half or more of their rounds or if the voter also awards argument points (or explains their decision not to award argument points in a manner which meets the argument points voting standards)." A "no" vote would retain the current voting standards for conduct points.

  • oromagi
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    1. Should there be additional criteria that a debater voter needs to meet in order to be eligible to vote on a debate?

    yes, C.B.D.A.E

    2. Should the COC (Site Rules) Section 1, Subsection 3, Part 10 be repealed?

    Hell yes

    3. Should COC (Voting Policy) Section 1, Subsection A B C D  be replaced?

    No. Many debates merit a high standard of judging, many do not- often by choice. Won’t these narrower standards prove inapplicable to a variety of cases?


  • Ragnar
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    In future I suggest a discussion thread for every major point of change to COC, to optimize new wording prior to proposed changes...


    1. Plan B & Plan E.
    They're kind of a mixed bag, like forum posts are not a substitute for debating (literally just one debate, as opposed to a game of Mafia); and I love the competency review option (I had previously suggested an automated review with a standardized sample debate).

    2. Abstain.
    A little swearing doesn't bother me, but I don't need bloody cuss words to make a point either.

    3. Yes
    If mods are suggesting a change to arguments, it's probably the standard they want to enforce.

    4. Yes.

    5. Yes
    6. Yes
    As I pointed out the other day, explaining what is meant by excessive has been much needed on these. ... And to be a nitpicker, I still think the requirement of listing each time someone did not violate conduct is a waste of everyone's time.
  • Tejretics
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    --> @bsh1
    Separate proposal, I think the COC should make clear what a sufficient vote in the choose winner system is.

    No opinion on any of the MEEP proposals above.
  • bsh1
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    To be clear: questions 3-6 are not altering existing standards, merely rephrasing them for clarity.
  • bsh1
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    --> @RationalMadman
    1. N - too lenient
    We're not voting on the policy, just on the phrasing of it. The status quo is the same policy as the suggested in the MEEP. Do you think the COC is better phrased as-is?

    Please rank the plans if possible.
  • bsh1
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    --> @oromagi
    No. Many debates merit a high standard of judging, many do not- often by choice. Won’t these narrower standards prove inapplicable to a variety of cases?
    We're not voting on the policy, just on the phrasing of it. The status quo is the same policy as the suggested in the MEEP. These rephrased policies are designed to say pretty much the same thing but in a more straightforward way. Do you think the COC is better phrased as-is?

  • bsh1
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    --> @Swagnarok
    Please rank the plans if possible. I understand D is your first choice, but I would prefer rankings.
  • bsh1
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    --> @Ragnar
    Thank you. That side-by-side comparison is helpful.

    Please rank the plans if possible.
  • bsh1
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    --> @Tejretics
    Separate proposal, I think the COC should make clear what a sufficient vote in the choose winner system is.
    Agreed. In hindsight, I should have included it in this MEEP. 
  • Ragnar
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    --> @bsh1
    I would have done the other two, but ten o'clock at night and my phone kept going off...

    As for rankings:
    1. Plan E
    2. Plan B
    3. Plan C
    4. Plan D
    5. Plan A

    In terms of favored traits:
      1. competency review, OR
      2. completed debate

    1. Alec
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      --> @bsh1
      1: Yes.  Plan B.

      Rankings for #1:

      B.
      C.
      D.
      E.
      A.  One non forfeited debate would confirm that you aren't a troll.

      2: Yes.  Freedom of speech.

      3: Yes.  This prevents bias.

      4: Yes.  Quantity should matter to an extent.  If I cite 2 reliable sources and you cite 1 reliable source, I should get the source points.  However, if I cite 2 reliable sources and you cite 10 biased sources, I should get the point.

      5: No.

      6: No.

    2. Swagnarok
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      D--E--C--B--A nac
    3. Stronn
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      --> @bsh1
      1. Yes, B-C-D-A-E
      2. Yes
      3. No
      4. No
      5. No
      6. No

    4. SupaDudz
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      1. Plan C
      2. Yes
    5. 3RU7AL
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      --> @bsh1

      1. Plan D-C-B-A-E
      2. No
      3. Yes
      4. Yes
      5. Yes
      6. Yes

    6. 3RU7AL
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      --> @Ragnar
      As I pointed out the other day, explaining what is meant by excessive has been much needed on these. ... And to be a nitpicker, I still think the requirement of listing each time someone did not violate conduct is a waste of everyone's time.
      Keep up the good work.
    7. RationalMadman
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      --> @bsh1
      I vote no to sources and s&g both. The alterations are too lenient. Please change my vote on #4 to be N.

      My updated vote:

      1. C>D>B>E>A
      2. Y
      3. Y
      4. N
      5. N - less bad than 4
      6. Y


      You're lying when you say this won't change the standards. I've seen Ramshutu and Virtuoso get away with 5 and 4 when voting on my debate against Wisdom of Ages and even when voting against me. They got away with not doing a shred of that despite me reporting the vote. I couldn't report virt's due to knowing that you never do anything and he'd moderate his own vote by not removing it.

    8. RationalMadman
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      The current wording of sources and s&g is less shit than the wording offered here. It still is subject to not just cherrypicking but false representation of how severe any particular source or s&g event was.
    9. bsh1
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      Question 1

      Yes - 8
      No - 0

      • A - 27
      • B - 13
      • C - 13
      • D - 14
      • E - 22

      Question 2

      Yes - 5
      No - 2

      Question 3

      Yes - 4
      No - 2

      Question 4

      Yes - 4
      No - 1

      Question 5

      Yes - 2
      No - 3

      Question 6

      Yes - 5
      No - 0

    10. RationalMadman
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      --> @bsh1
      Noooo bsh a and e are the least popular