Several of my questions have been the target of multiple downvotes that I see as inappropriate and unjustified for certain questions. The latest example is this now perfectly valid question, which I'd edited to meet the site standards as a result of following instructions on the Drupal Answers Help Center. The edited question and answer subsequently received two downvotes today, coinciding with leymannx's comment. Here is another perfectly good question that's received numerous unexplained downvotes.

Since I joined starting as a Drupal novice, this particular Stack Exchange site has struck me as dysfunctional and unusually critical. Some of the downvotes appear justified, especially once learning of actual duplicates or my initial assumptions or ignorance become evident. However, there seems to be a preponderance of unhelpful, often unexplained and piled-on downvotes as well as votes to close, without reasonable attention to subsequent question-edit revisions. This can only serve to drive away new users from the site while accomplishing little to anything actually improving the site's quality.

Another strange quirk to this site is the apparent distaste from those with reputation for adding new tags and rejecting new ones, for example the lacking Gutenberg tag. For comparison, the Wordpress stack exchange site has about 800 tags, whereas this site has about 150.

Case in point (and how meta meta and recursive is this!? Not to mention unsurprising):

Meta meta

Here's another example of what seems to me to be a reasonable question. To boot, it ended up becoming an editor war over tagging it with 9, when I wasn't asking about Drupal 9, along with unexplained downvotes.

I wouldn't care so much superficially, but I've been prevented from posting questions until the system's perceived quality of them increases.

  • 1
    I don't agree with the statement about tags (SO has 62000+ tags, what does that say about the WP site?), but I feel your pain on the other things. You've been caught in an unfortunate loop; the system tells you to improve existing questions, but at the same time changing the meaning of a question that someone has already invested time in answering, in such a way that invalidates that effort, is also not desirable. Then there's the fact that he original question probably wasn't a great fit for the site anyway, which muddies it for everyone, you included. This is quite a specific situation... – Clive Aug 5 '20 at 18:33
  • 1
    ...personally I'd recommend taking this one on the chin, and not putting it down to a more endemic problem with the whole community. I'll also say that I don't, again personally, agree with the voting that happened after the edit either. There are other ways to express dissatisfaction if a question has changed meaning (comments, flags) without using votes that maybe weren't focused on the quality of the question but rather its evolution – Clive Aug 5 '20 at 18:35
  • Tags on DA only get introduced after being discussed on Meta. It can be bothersome to take that route but on the long run it makes curating the site much easier. To me it felt that in most of your early questions you did try to game the system. I think there were questions showing only little efforts, then got self-answered immediately thereafter. WPSE is difficult to compare to DA in my experience. WPSE to me feels like 100 new users a day while 50% of them are asking support questions for off-topic premium plugins/themes. – leymannx Aug 5 '20 at 18:54
  • @Clive I chose Wordpress purposefully because it is of such a similar scope to Drupal vs. Stack Overflow. – glenviewjeff Aug 5 '20 at 19:25
  • 1
    Yes, I would not use WordPress Development as example, since they have php as tag. Stack Exchange doesn't say how to add new tags, as it leaves that to each site. For sure, new users cannot know which tags have been tried in the past and which tags have been decided not to use anymore. That's why the suggestion of asking a question on Drupal Answers meta makes sense. Yes, self-answered questions are welcome, but they are subject to the closing reasons as other questions. If a self-answered question is too broad, it will be closed as it isn't a self-answered question. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 9:10
  • 1
    Also, it's probable that the expectations for self-answered questions are higher than for other questions, but this is understandable. If a user is going to post a self-answered question, the question should give enough details for any user to answer it; it should also give more details, since the question is being posted for a specific case for which the user found a solution. It cannot be a vague question like How do I create a view for nodes? Also the answer should be detailed enough, as it's an answer for a specific case for which the user find a solution. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 9:18
  • 1
    What @leymannx said is not the reason for closing questions nor for down-voting. It's rather how low quality, self-answered, questions can be perceived from other users. Users could find that suspicious, in the same way they would find suspicious, for example, that a user asks low quality questions which are then answered from the same user who gets the answer accepted even if there are better answers. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 15:18
  • 1
    I didn't contradict myself. enter a new tag with your question and it will be created just says how to create a tag, but it doesn't say every tag is correct. The simply at the beginning of the sentence just means it is simple as; it doesn't mean This is what you only need to do to create a tag; you don't need to discuss the validity of the tag you added with other users. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 17:58
  • 1
    It cannot, because the page that describes the create new tag privilege says you feel you can make a strong case that your question does cover a new topic, where you can make a strong case means you need to make a strong case when somebody debates the necessity of the new tag you added. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 17:59
  • 1
    None of the guidelines/documentation found on a site, which are the same for every Stack Exchange site, says which tags are wrong, nor does it says where to make a strong case for a tag, nor if that should be done before creating a tag. That's exactly my point: Those details are left to the communities behind each site. I would go even further: There are Stack Exchange sites where some comments are considered acceptable, even if the page for the comment everywhere privilege says the purpose of comments isn't that. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 18:06
  • 1
    Nope... You won't find a documentation/guideline page common to every Stack Exchange that lists any tag that should be avoided. On the contrary, the privilege page for creating tags explicitly says make a strong case. – kiamlaluno Aug 6 '20 at 18:15
  • 1
    I didn't understand why this question on meta was downvoted so I upvoted. I usually try not to downvote a question that is probably going to be closed anyway as I also think it unfairly punishes new users trying to gain enough reputation to comment and review on their own. – mradcliffe Aug 13 '20 at 15:00
  • 1
    Re: downvotes, I really wish the site would only allow a downvote with a justification in the form of constructive criticism comment or some other non-unilateral action. Downvotes can be "unclear or not useful" too. Outside the obvious "here's my stack trace, now why doesn't it work?" type Q's, it seems like many Q's get downvotes without any explicit reasoning why it's "not researched, unclear, not useful." – Shawn Conn Aug 16 '20 at 0:29
  • 1
    @mradcliffe – Voting on Meta is for saying Agree/Disagree. – leymannx Aug 16 '20 at 13:15
  • 2
    Voting is a balanced system - you can't force people to justify their downvotes without also forcing them to justify their upvotes. It wouldn't be sustainable in any practical sense, and who's going to police it? If my justification is i don't like spaghetti, what then? Voting is different on meta @glenviewjeff, the help text you're citing doesn't cover the reality. People typically vote on any meta post based on whether they agree with the premise or not. – Clive Aug 19 '20 at 9:41

Re: Tags. DA has an odd idiomatic way of enforcing tag usage which looks to be the result of various interpretations of the SE guidelines.

The gatekeeping process being an explicit meta-discussion seems like an oddly insular process to me and doesn't look like it has been done for many tags (FWIW, I've only ever seen this done for version tags so perhaps there was other discussions I missed.)

It also seems to have created a situation where tagging doesn't help with the subject matter at hand. For example, look at the tag inventory:

  • 1
    Lots of useful tag suggestions in here. 🤗 – leymannx Aug 20 '20 at 9:15

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .