[OSM-talk] Commenting and thumbs up/down feature for changesets

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Wed Jul 13 08:18:48 BST 2011


On 07/13/11 09:01, Steve Bennett wrote:
> Did this changeset actually break any guidelines or policies? Is there
> anything wrong with it other than the fact that you don't personally
> approve? Let's approach the problem in a spirit of long-term
> sustainability, not short term witch-hunting.

I think you're misinterpreting.

Like/dislike buttons are quite common and they don't mean that anyone 
engages in a "witch hunt". They are just something that helps the 
collective to form an opinion - if something is liked by 50 and disliked 
by 50 then it is clear that the community is divided; if it is disliked 
by 100 then it is clear that this is not what the community approves of.

Also, in case this hasn't become clear, I am not in favour of +1/-1 
buttons for *contributors*, but for individual *changesets*.

We're a community of human beings and if someone does something that is 
disliked by many others, then that *is* a problem. Whether a single 
individual likes or dislikes something is of no importance; but where a 
significant number of individuals like or dislike something, a community 
opinion is expressed.

I am not a friend of policies and guidelines (even though the changeset 
that prompted me to write my original post seems to run foul of at least 
the draft policy outlined in 

I think there should be policies and guidelines for a few "hard" things 
but there will always be "soft" things where setting up rules is 
extremely difficult. A +1/-1 scheme for changesets could be a 
replacement for the tedious and bueraucratic process of setting up 
guidelines. Such a process is quickly drowned by all sorts of "but we 
cannot have this rule because there is a legitimate situation where you 
would need to break it...", whereas a simple +1/-1 for changesets would 
not have that problem. You could ask questions like: Show me a changeset 
with more than 5 "+1" votes that uses the so-and-so tag - in the hope of 
finding a good example of how that tag is used.


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