Issues, Bugs, and Requested Features

[Edit: IssuesBugs, and Requested Features should be tracked at Google Code, not here -- matt, 2010-04-23


Less Wrong is still under construction.  Please post any bugs or issues with Less Wrong to this thread.  Try to keep each comment thread a clean discussion of each bug or issue.

Requested features... sure, go ahead, but bear in mind we may not be able to implement for a while.

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Moderation Guidelines: Reign of Terror - I delete anything I judge to be annoying or counterproductiveexpand_more

Currently, lots of discussions just end without the last commenter or readers knowing why.

So, feature idea: add a way for the author of the parent of a comment to set an "agreement status" with the following options by clicking a button:

  • I don't understand this yet. Still trying.
  • I don't understand this. I give up.
  • I agree.
  • I disagree, and will write up the reasons later.
  • I disagree, but don't want to bother writing out why.
  • I need to think about this more.
  • I already addressed this before.
  • [other options if needed]

A norm for finishing any conversation with such status would be more flexible. This'd take at least a good top-level post, official endorsement of the policy, and some reminders for the participants of conversations that follow this template. Also, without the norm, software option won't be useful.

Yes I agree we need a norm. But we also need the software feature so that we aren't littered with agreement status comments everywhere, and also to make it easier to follow the norm, which would make it more likely to be adopted as a norm.

so that we aren't littered with agreement status comments everywhere

Actually, what I've done sometimes is I add the status to the end of my already posted comment. That way I'm not adding any 'comment noise' but if anyone reads the post in the future they can see what the outcome/latest state was.

I do that occasionally but sometimes feel a little self-important while doing so. (Along the lines of "who cares what I finally think?") But I rationalize that it would be helpful for someone following the thread, in the near or far future. I think it would generally be a good norm to have.

Just badger the person who fails to respond to a what seems to you an important comment.

I hereby give everyone explicit permission to do so to me.

It is a good idea, and one that would work best if it was a norm. Badgering without such a norm can come across as insecure and play right into the hands of the one using the 'rhetorical inattention' gambit. Fortunately, a concise 'badger' including or consisting of a link to the parent would remove the need to explain or justify oneself and so avoid this difficulty.

the 'rhetorical inattention' gambit

I'm now wondering which specific rhetorical usage wedrifid!2009 was referring to. There are all sorts of meanings depending on the context and quite a few could be considered rhetorical. I think "a" would be more appropriate than "the" here.

In any case, you cannot force anyone to respond. Thus, in my opinion, the best response to ignorance is to summarize the debate British Parliamentary style and be done with it.

"I disagree, and am open to disagreement-arbitration on this particular issue (but not necessarily others)."

I've felt that way on issues on this board before, but didn't continue responding because there were too many comments to reply too. (I'm thinking in particular of the "no one likes the taste of alcohol" thesis that I advanced.)

[other options if needed]

The main one: I don't like your attitude, this is signalling crap not discussion. Stick it.

I don't like this idea, so far. I don't see any good way of adding this to the UI nicely, and for most such conversations my response would be "I walked away from the computer for a week and so didn't check any such box"

What about adding a drop-down list box to the right of "Vote up | Vote down" etc? Or below that line? The selected message can be displayed in the same space for others to see.

I guess this feature wouldn't be useful for a user who comments on a few threads and then leaves for a week. But there are also extended discussions between regulars here that end without anyone except the author of the parent of the last comment knowing why.

I think a common one is "I'm tired of this discussion and don't want to think about it any more."

1 point