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ZeeSaga
Just a suggestion I had about the poll feature. I think it would be nice to see who voted for what on polls. I don't know if you all had a reason not to show that but I thought it might enhance the debate. Maybe give an option to the poll producer to show or not to show who voted for what at least. Just a thought.

Part of the problem is I cannot even argue the point if all anyone does on the polls is vote and not actually debate on it. At least let the poll producers have the choice to show or not to show.
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Amlord
You can't debate the poll results, only what posters actually post to debate about. I don't think being able to point to this person or that person and saying "See, Poster X voted for it" advances the debate at all.
Paladin Elspeth
There is the idea as well that those who vote would be influenced by the posters who voted before, depending on who it was, in other words, "choosing up sides". I think in that case that the greater honesty about one's stance depends on anonymity.
ZeeSaga
QUOTE(Amlord @ Sep 1 2009, 07:31 AM) *
You can't debate the poll results, only what posters actually post to debate about. I don't think being able to point to this person or that person and saying "See, Poster X voted for it" advances the debate at all.


Yes but I think the polls may be a lazy way to give input without actually having to back it up. Look at how many people voted on this poll vs. the 2 responses that actually said why. Would you support at least giving the option of showing them?

QUOTE(Paladin Elspeth @ Sep 1 2009, 11:28 AM) *
There is the idea as well that those who vote would be influenced by the posters who voted before, depending on who it was, in other words, "choosing up sides". I think in that case that the greater honesty about one's stance depends on anonymity.


But some people may already be swayed by the majority, hopefully not but there are dummies out there. I understand that some polls are good to be anonymous but I think that giving that choice to the poll maker would be good, or maybe even giving that to the poll taker or both.
Dontreadonme
Easy fix: If you want debate with sourcing and rebuttals, add questions for debate along with your poll when you create a topic.

If it's not your topic, abide by the structure of theirs or start your own.
Paladin Elspeth
QUOTE(ZeeSaga)
But some people may already be swayed by the majority, hopefully not but there are dummies out there. I understand that some polls are good to be anonymous but I think that giving that choice to the poll maker would be good, or maybe even giving that to the poll taker or both.

One nice feature here is that you either have to vote or nullify your vote before you can see the current tally, so it's harder to be influenced by the posters here, or at least not initially. I use that to judge whether my current designation of "slightly liberal" is accurate or whether I am actually more mainstream on a given subject.
overlandsailor

I've always seen polls on ad.gif as a way to get a broader indication of where board members stand. I run into quite a few debate topics here that I have an opinion on but that either I don't have the time (or will) to craft a response or another member's response covers my thinking on the subject (and it's usually the later). Polls allow those who either do not want to echo another's response or simply don't want to take the time to respond themselves to have a small level of input. That's the purpose I see polls serving and I don't think eliminating anonymity would improve it.

What eliminating anonymity might do is further reduce the number of respondents. If you just want to add your position to the tally when you come across a poll you can just do so, but if you know your vote will be a matter of public record that could lead to you being called out on it, that could give you pause. The only effect eliminating anonymity from polls is likely to have, in my opinion, is to lower the number of people responding to them.
scubatim
I would agree with the other responses pertaining to the anonymity, but would offer another option to put more information behind the polls. Instead of showing the names of the people who voted, offer statistical information about the politics and party affiliation of those participating in the polls. I can't see the value of pointing to who voted how, but if you were to look for trends in the voting, break it down by politics or even gender and age. (not sure if everyone's gender and age is included in their profile, can't remember if that was optional or not.)
Julian
QUOTE(ZeeSaga @ Sep 1 2009, 01:40 AM) *
Just a suggestion I had about the poll feature. I think it would be nice to see who voted for what on polls. I don't know if you all had a reason not to show that but I thought it might enhance the debate. Maybe give an option to the poll producer to show or not to show who voted for what at least. Just a thought.

Part of the problem is I cannot even argue the point if all anyone does on the polls is vote and not actually debate on it. At least let the poll producers have the choice to show or not to show.


From my own experience, I comment less often on thread with polls but no debate questions because I can often adequately express my opinions on a subject by just pressing a button. Also I think a lot of people who are otherwise "lurkers" vote in polls, so I think the key is to have debate questions underneath polls that you create as well as the poll questions themselves.

If you want to know who I am, and want me to back up my choices, I think you're almost better off not putting a poll on at all, and just concentrating on the debate questions. To my mind, debate questions are the real meat of any topic; polls are merely garnish.

QUOTE(scubatim @ Sep 1 2009, 11:12 PM) *
I would agree with the other responses pertaining to the anonymity, but would offer another option to put more information behind the polls. Instead of showing the names of the people who voted, offer statistical information about the politics and party affiliation of those participating in the polls. I can't see the value of pointing to who voted how, but if you were to look for trends in the voting, break it down by politics or even gender and age. (not sure if everyone's gender and age is included in their profile, can't remember if that was optional or not.)


I'm not sure how much value that would add, as not only would most polls not be a statistically valid sample of ad.gif membership, a lot of the time the political affiliation/politics would identify individual respondents, especially if age and geography (surely just as valid/informative) were to be included as well. For example, most regular ad.gif visitors would assume that anyone claiming to be socialist from Britain was me, even if it were an otherwise silent lurker. Ohio conservatives might be assumed to be Amlord; Very conservative Independents from Iowa? Er, that'd be you then. smile.gif
scubatim
QUOTE(Julian @ Sep 2 2009, 05:52 AM) *
I'm not sure how much value that would add, as not only would most polls not be a statistically valid sample of ad.gif membership, a lot of the time the political affiliation/politics would identify individual respondents, especially if age and geography (surely just as valid/informative) were to be included as well. For example, most regular ad.gif visitors would assume that anyone claiming to be socialist from Britain was me, even if it were an otherwise silent lurker. Ohio conservatives might be assumed to be Amlord; Very conservative Independents from Iowa? Er, that'd be you then. smile.gif

Political affiliation or ideology aren't that uncommon when evaluating polls in general. I am just fine with how the polls here are set up, but I think having the option to capture how many ad.gif members that are conservative vote a certain way versus how many liberals might be able to add some substance or another direction for the debate the poll is attached to. Heck, someone might find that they don't agree with the majority of those that align with their ideology and might learn something about themselves.
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