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Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:22 AM

Taking your temperature - subject: blind voting

I wailed about non-private votes in our contests. I finally said, at one other time, that I would just acquiesce and give up. But my nature asks: "why stick with that stance just because you felt like giving up then?"

I'm thinking the loss of blind voting has hurt our contests. Time passed is saying yes to that.
I'm thinking we did not (collectively) protest enough.
I'm thinking that we ought to at least request an answer to the long standing question of why an exception is not available to turn on anonymous voting for our contests.
I absolutely know this is not that difficult and our contests do not fall into the categories that were stated why non-private voting was preferred for other polls.

I think we rolled over and gave in too easily, and deserved an answer.

I won't take it personally, promise! I will not look () who said what since I'm posting what unfortunately is a non-private poll. You who know me know this has pissed me off from the start.

So just say yay or nay about us as the photographers asking for an answer.

4 votes, 1 pass | Time left: Unlimited
Collectively request anonymous polls
3 (75%)
Collectively request an answer to why we did not get them
0 (0%)
Hang it up, Mira, you are getting on my last aquiescent nerve
0 (0%)
I never cared about this
1 (25%)
We all know that Robb is a dingbat
0 (0%)
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Disclaimer: This is an Internet poll

28 replies, 1743 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply Taking your temperature - subject: blind voting (Original post)
Mira Feb 2013 OP
Behind the Aegis Feb 2013 #1
Mira Feb 2013 #2
Behind the Aegis Feb 2013 #3
Mira Feb 2013 #6
Behind the Aegis Feb 2013 #7
Turborama Feb 2013 #9
RC Feb 2013 #18
Turborama Feb 2013 #8
Blue_In_AK Feb 2013 #11
handmade34 Feb 2013 #13
Celebration Feb 2013 #15
OffWithTheirHeads Feb 2013 #4
Mira Feb 2013 #5
handmade34 Feb 2013 #14
Stevenmarc Feb 2013 #25
ManiacJoe Feb 2013 #26
Blue_In_AK Feb 2013 #10
ManiacJoe Feb 2013 #27
Blue_In_AK Feb 2013 #28
JohnnyRingo Feb 2013 #12
Celebration Feb 2013 #16
Solly Mack Feb 2013 #17
NV Whino Feb 2013 #19
Mira Feb 2013 #20
Richard D Feb 2013 #21
alfredo Feb 2013 #22
Stevenmarc Feb 2013 #23
Mira Feb 2013 #24

Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:27 AM

1. I think an exception for this group would lead to more and more.

I also don't know that such a feature is available. To be honest, I think where things need to be "blind" are the submissions. I doubt much that people care if they know which photo they voted for, many people actually say it in there posts. Have there been significant changes in the numbers of votes cast? Given that we have almost a year of contests, we should be able (depending if search is working or not) to compare and contrast.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:44 AM

2. I respect your opinion immensely.

I do think considering the enormity of what is involved in the website that a turn off feature for privacy is probably a piece of cake when it comes to our contests.
(my son has written and runs a huge program that internationally makes him a fine living and I just know what is possible if someone cares)

Our contests are different from the rest of the polls. They are between individuals, friends, competitors, and folks who talk to each other and learn from each other. And all that implies.

I think the votes that have been cast have only changed slighly, but the submissions have diminished amazingly from day one once the new polling came on board and it has not improved as time went on.

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Response to Mira (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:55 AM

3. I can see you points.

Might I suggest asking the DU techie (I always forget which one he is), if it is at all possible, because it may render any further discussion moot.

I guess I don't feel the same in regards to paragraph two ("They are between individuals, friends, competitors, and folks who talk to each other and learn from each other. And all that implies.") because, in all honesty, I stopped submitting for two reasons, but neither had anything to do with the polling.

I do appreciate you taking my point into consideration; it is nice to know I can be heard every now and again.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #3)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 01:26 AM

6. Missed you! And still don't know why you got discouraged from submitting.

The DU techie, Earl G I would think, has been asked in that the question has been posed by me personally in the appropriate forums.
No answer. Which is one of my poll queries - and frustrations.
Just seeing your name makes me sit up.
You are important to me.



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Response to Mira (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 01:51 AM

7. I appreciate your comments!

I understand your frustration, now that I know it has been asked and unanswered. Perhaps a united voice might illicit a response and then a course of action might be easier (or not...ha).

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Response to Mira (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 02:44 AM

9. Elad is the programmer here, I believe.

Last edited Mon Feb 18, 2013, 11:18 AM - Edit history (1)

Blind polls for photography competitions only.

I think that if your/our valid concerns were explained as clearly as you and others have done in this thread I can't see - if it was technically easy to do - why they (or any DUer) would have a problem with it.

Have you considered a Meta OP to see what the general consensus of DU would be about such an exception?

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Response to Turborama (Reply #9)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 11:24 AM

18. I think we should keep the consensus about the photography poles here in the Group.

 

We have a reason for them, the contest. Out in the wild on DU, they would get abused for a variety of reasons.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 02:36 AM

8. I like the "Blind" submissions idea, now you mention it. Should be easy enough to do?

Entrants can just PM the link to their entry to the host of the competition.

Et voilą! No-one knows who the photos were by, unless the entrant tells those they want to know via PM or other means.

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Response to Turborama (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:58 AM

11. We've done it that way before.

A bit more trouble for the host, but it assured the anonymity. I liked it.

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Response to Blue_In_AK (Reply #11)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:26 AM

13. me too

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Response to handmade34 (Reply #13)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:40 AM

15. me too

And I think it is more important than blind voting, personally, because that is automatic if there are blind submissions.

Maybe we could start a Photobucket account for contests, and have everyone upload their entries directly to the account??? I don't know, trying to think outside the box...........

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:55 AM

4. The only way voting works is if it is anonymous.

If you think you may offend someone by not voting for them, you can't be impartial. You need to be able to vote for the candidate, photo, Miss America bikini contestant or Oscar winner you felt was the best. Period! Without worrying that you will piss somebody off. Not that I don't enjoy a little corruption on occasion.

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Response to OffWithTheirHeads (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 01:20 AM

5. Yes - and that's the rub.

To us, a small group, friends, people who talk to each other and learn from each other, it is not such an easy thing to say to one "I am nuts about this thing you produced" and then turn around and vote for someone else's nest of droppings.
Thanks for understanding what I am saying, have said, am in essence exposing for having had an effect on our contests, and what has prevented me personally from voting in any of them since the new law went into effect.


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Response to Mira (Reply #5)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:31 AM

14. just this last once

I will admit that I voted for Mira's photo because I like you -Mira (but also because her photo "spoke" to me) ...but really, I respect and appreciate all photographers and I do think in this group we need to keep the photos in the contests anonymous.



GOOD MORNING!!!!

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Response to OffWithTheirHeads (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 03:14 PM

25. Fortunatly

I never worry if I'm going to piss someone off so it's easy for me to remain impartial. I curate a fair amount of exhibitions during the year and trust me the ramifications of checking off a box on the internet pales in comparison to a live artist in your face.

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Response to OffWithTheirHeads (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:57 PM

26. Being worried about offending someone by an internet poll vote...

... should be the last thing on anyone's mind.

There are lots of reasons to vote for a picture:
- emotional connection
- subject bias
- technical aspects (exposure, focus, etc)
- allegiance to the artist
- gaming the system

During the submission process, we can associate a name with the picture. During the voting process, folks need to do a few more clicks to look up the submissions in this subforum when they care who the photographer is. The blind submissions will remove this option, should we care enough to do them.

There is nothing wrong with saying one photo is great in the discussions then voting for a still better photo.

If my first choice is winning by a landslide, I will vote for second place especially in the preliminaries.

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:55 AM

10. I always thought all polls should be anonymous,

not just ours. I don't think we can make a special exception for this group, though. Just thinking from a purely democratic and egalitarian point of view.

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Response to Blue_In_AK (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:00 PM

27. Now this I agree with.

Anonymity for the photo contests does not matter, but in the political discussions, anonymous votes should lead to more honest voting.

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Response to ManiacJoe (Reply #27)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:54 PM

28. I don't even vote in those at all

unless they're completely noncontroversial.

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:46 AM

12. Torches and pitchforks!

It's the only language the admins understand!
Or alternatively, we could politely ask enmasse for an exception.

Either way is OK by me.

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:58 AM

16. my opinions aren't that strong on this issue, so I will go along with the group decision

But honestly, I think it is more important that we don't know the identities of the people submitting the photos than it is to hide the polling.

I also think it would be beneficial to not know how many votes each photo has, because that also influences voting.

I feel that all of those things will would be ideal. In order of importance, I would say

1. (tie for first) Not knowing identity of those submitting--I don't think anyone here lets the identity of the person consciously affect the voting, but it can have a subconscious effect. And some people are more suspicious about this than I am.
Not knowing running total of votes during the voting period. This seems to have a huge effect on voting. I wish this feature could be cut off.

3. Blinded polls--and this would not be necessary at all if we had 1.

There are so many great photos submitted to the contests, I just really don't care who votes or doesn't vote for mine. (I thought I would care, originally, but found that I don't.) But if that is all we can get, it is preferable to nothing. I have a bit of an issue asking for the blinded polls when we could easily take care of this part of it by submitting directly to the host. But would blinded polls alone without 1. improve things? Yes. I will leave it up to the group whether we ask for it or not, so I am abstaining from voting.

I like the blinded entries but I do feel that it should be the host's choice on that. I just wish more hosts would choose it.

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 11:11 AM

17. Hi, everyone! (Important, please read)

I asked Skinner about anonymous voting and it isn't going to happen. I know the lack of secrecy in voting in the polls has hurt our submissions because I remember well several long time PG members saying they would be less inclined to enter contests because of it. We've seen less and less of those members. Still, the administration has its reasons for not making an exception. I was hoping Skinner would respond in-thread and he still might. I have no way of knowing either way.


Here is a cut/paste of the full exchange. Skinner's reply then my question, just as it appears in my inbox.

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
> Skinner
>
> Re: Hi. Question.
>
> Unfortunately I do. To think we are going to provide an option for anonymous polls. The open polls have been very successful in dealing with the poll-related problems we had on Old DU, and I do not think it would be wise for us to start providing exceptions.
>
> I am sorry.
> ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
>
> > I know you're very busy and this is probably the 100th PM you've read.
> >
> > Mira has started a thread in the Photography Group about working out a means to have anonymous polls for the photo contests. I don't know if that is possible but I know the group would appreciate any input you can give on the matter.
> >
> > http://www.democraticunderground.com/103614185
> >
> >
> > Thank you,
> >
> > Solly Mack

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 11:37 AM

19. I'm for anonymous polls

Anonymous submissions should be up to the contest host. I don't mind them once in a while, but wouldn't like them as a steady diet. They restrict general posts when one wants an opinion on which of two or three fabulous photos to submit and it's harder on the host. As for anonymous talleys, I don't like that either. I sometimes vote for an excellent photo with low count just to keep it in the running against a more popular, but perhaps technically inferior photo. (IMO)

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:23 PM

20. I hesitate to close this down

I hesitate to close this down in spite of it having been unsuccessful in the mission.
See Solly's post #17.

I hesitate because I selfishly like seeing the proof in the votes that I'm not alone.
So, I leave it up for the heck of it. Each vote gives me a little personal vindication for feeling pretty lonely in my long standing railing against the open polling in photo contests.

I'm glad Solly brought us an answer from Skinner. Brief and unsatisfactory though it was. It is nevertheless preferable to just being ignored like in the past.
I have said it before and say it one last time, we bring joy and beauty to the site. We work hard at it, and we deserve more than a curt dismissal. That makes it look like we are unappreciated and unimportant.

Our polls are different than the other polls. Everybody willing to engage in a discussion or give it thought can see that. But until today our asking - begging - have not brought any answer or recognition of the question to the requests.
But so be it.

Thanks for a site I value and don't want to be without Mr. Skinner.
Expressing a little care and attention to us would not have hurt that much.

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 02:59 PM

21. I agree.

I prefer blind submission and blind voting.

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:23 PM

22. Secret ballot

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Response to Mira (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 01:17 PM

23. Honestly

I never understood why blind voting needs to be an issue in a contest of this nature. I see it as a quaint exercise amongst friends to motivate each other to shoot something interesting resulting in winning volunteer work, which is the primary reason I don't participate since I have a lot on my plate already.

For me personally, whether or not there was an anonymous aspect to the competition never played a roll to my participation.

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Response to Stevenmarc (Reply #23)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 02:25 PM

24. I like diversity, in our opinions and in our photos.

When I asked I hoped to unearth the numbers of us participating photographers who believe we merit an exception to the open polling. Then I hoped maybe I could make a case to get it done.
I couldn't.

Open or blind polling is irrelevant to you as you said, and you don't participate in the contests any more anyway, for other reasons.

I may be wrong, but I think some of us are older and spend time and shoe leather to get a good entry. I know I have. I for one do not look at the contests as simply a quaint exercise. I have fun, and I learn a lot. And so, they say, do many others.

Discounting the value of our rolling contests as a contribution to the site is what brought us the dismissal of our request.
I think that's too bad and inaccurate.
I only think back to how often during the time we had no polls we were missed by the general population.

You gotta have art. And we do the best we can, and I also think we get better all the time.





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