In the course of discussing how to handle the recent uptick in trollish comments, one observation from a number of BMGers is that comment ratings would help. Ratings allow you to express approval or disapproval quickly, but avoid the kind of engagement that trolls feed on. And ratings have other salutary features, as has been discussed here previously.
We’d like to have ratings back; so would you. Our current plan is to build something like the system on Daily Kos, where users can, once logged in, up-rate or down-rate comments. Maybe we would give special attention to comments with a lot of up-ratings, like a recommended list for comments; maybe comments with multiple down-ratings would be hidden; there are lots of possibilities.
In order to implement something like this, we’ll have to build it. ”How can I help,” I hear you cry! Glad you asked. You can subscribe to BMG. In addition to getting a handsome gold-rimmed badge next to your name wherever it appears on the site, you’ll also be served up an ad-free experience, and you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping to make BMG better.
We only need a handful of new subscribers to have raised the necessary funds to ask our developer to get to work on this project. I hope you’ll consider helping out.
Thank you, and thanks as always for your participation at BMG.
UPDATE: By popular request, here’s a “Donate” button in case anyone would like to send a few bucks directly to the cause of building a comment rating system. (Donations to BMG are not tax-deductible, it hardly needs to be said.)
FURTHER UPDATE: Thank you, thank you, thank you. Enough of you have subscribed or chipped in extra bucks that we are now in a position to move forward on this. I have given our developer the green light, and I hope and expect that we’ll have comment ratings up and running fairly soon. I will keep you posted.