DEV Community


Discussion on: I feel like the quality of posts in Dev is deteriorating

v6 profile image
🦄N B🛡 • Edited

can introduce segregation will end up being the wrong path.

I think this is sort of what I was getting at with the echo chamber effect so commonly attributed to karma or "winning internet points" types of systems.

Rather than rating an idea based on the quality of its presentation and effort, people simply decide whether they disagree or agree with it.

I think this inability to discriminate between someone who's playing the game well & by the rules and whether they're someone playing for your team is similar to the stuff I read sometimes from self-appointed moral crusaders, with gotcha games like, "Oh, you disagree with this anti-poverty idea, you must be a fat-cat capitalist." Or "I think ______ and anyone who disagrees with me is automatically a secret -ist or (-phobe) acting in bad faith!" or "You used the wrong word!" or "But of course the communists will never agree with this."

Basically, the karma system only works if high quality consensus building ideas are the most likely to be selected for, rather than ideas with which people agree. And quality control mechanisms that rely on simple up or down votes or "I didn't like this" reports end up getting gamed to suppress ideas with which the user of that QC tool disagrees.

What little I've studied of Ricardian Contracts, Markov Chains, Sybil Attacks, and all the other obtusely named concepts in the game theory of adversarial systems design doesn't suggest to me that this is a problem that can be resolved without resorting to PEBKAC hypotheses.

But some of those hypotheses have been developed, and there's hope. New research has uncovered that morality, as used today, has little to do with higher order cognitive processes. It may not sound like good news, but a biological proclivity that is known is a lot easier to deal with than a cultural issue whose cause is unknown.

Initial Groundbreaking Paper:

Further Work:

I don't know what g0v are doing, but it looks like it's working:

And some of the intergenerational conflict and external pressure Taiwan has dwarfs the issues that loom large in the mind of US Citizens.

The University was, once upon a time, a way to winnow out high quality ideas rather than those that are merely vogue or popular.

But, with the research above, there may be a way, a narrow path, for Social Media to suck less at this too.

Companies that don't take this new research seriously will be left behind by their competitors who can actually make Social Media less anti-social.