I have recently had a couple flags denied for these comments. Last I knew this was considered rude and a violation of the be nice policy. Has this changed? Should I stop flagging comments that start off -1? Is it ok for me to start my comments with -1?

For those questioning if this is "Actually a thing" please refer to this meta from 2012: What is rude on The Workplace?

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    I have yet to find these -1 comments, so I'd say keep flagging them. :/ unless you meant those that also included WHY they -1'd? cause those are still ok. its called feedback – Migz Feb 28 '17 at 16:45
  • I've seen a lot of these as well. – user30031 Feb 28 '17 at 16:49
  • @Migz - I have no objection if the policy has changed. yes its -1 followed by reason why. Last I knew those were considered rude. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 17:06
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    It's kind of an odd objection because half the time you dv an answer, someone bitches about not explaining it. "-1 because ___" seems to fulfill that. I personally would find a -1 with explanation a lot less rude than a drive-by dv. – Chris E Feb 28 '17 at 17:19
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    @ChristopherEstep - I assure you it was not my idea or policy. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 17:22
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    I figured, I was speaking generally. I actually think -1 comments are useful yet the useless +1's persist. Further, I think -1 comments fulfill the actual intent of comments which is to discuss the answer so the poster can make clarifications if necessary. I've edited my answers many times in response to comments and in a few cases I've actually deleted because I misunderstood something that was pointed out in dv explanation. TL:DR: -1 are not rude, they're beneficial. That's my take. – Chris E Feb 28 '17 at 17:26
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    @ChristopherEstep - Feel free to wage your own war on the +1 I already have HERE – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 19:19
  • I don't think it's rude to explain a downvote and I get heaps of them... never once convinced me to change an answer though... more annoying than rude I would think. – Kilisi Mar 1 '17 at 2:36
  • I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because there never ever ever was a policy that said -1 in a comment is rude. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Mar 1 '17 at 8:38

So do you also consider "I downvoted because [reasons]" to be rude? What about "I disagree that [x] because [y]"?

As far as I know starting a comment with "-1" has never been a violation of the Be Nice policy nor is it common to consider a comment rude just because it includes a reference to a downvote. I do often see people becoming annoyed over downvotes that are left unexplained, which wouldn't make much sense if they fell under a remove-on-sight policy.

There are a myriad of ways for comments to be rude or non-constructive, from the subtle to the obscene, but simply including "-1" does not in and of itself make a comment rude.

  • Perhaps you should get together with the other mods. I do not mind if it is not just want an official clarification – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 19:07
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    FYI Original Meta on TWP and Linked topic – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 19:13
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    I have already served a suspension over this fight so yes It was a thing – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 22:31
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    @IDrinkandIKnowThings I agree with Lilienthal. I'm not aware of a policy that "-1" is rude, and the only answer on the meta post you linked to that argues for it being rude is currently at -6. If you know of something I've missed, please show me. – Monica Cellio Mar 1 '17 at 2:42
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    Okeydokey no more flags for them from me. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Mar 1 '17 at 8:37

Just saying "-1" is unnecessary: the user already knows from the notification that somebody downvoted. Votes are also deliberately anonymous, so this kind of comment does nothing except rub in the disapproval. It's not constructive, which is just as good a reason to flag comments.

Saying "-1 because Thing X and Reason Z" explains why content is getting downvoted (often accounting for several downvotes, if we presume upvoting such comment reflects partially on downvoting such content), provides the user posting content a chance to inquire further, and points out the exact issue to be fixed. That is the entire point of commentary, and this kind of comment is not inherently rude unless a person thinks downvotes or explanations of downvotes themselves are rude (which is entirely unreasonable in absence of vote abuse or separately rude/offensive comment use). We simply save a few characters and seconds by typing "-1: ..." instead of "I'm downvoting this because ...".

If it would be rude without saying "-1" then it's rude. Flag it. If it just says "-1" then it's not constructive. Flag it. If it explains the reason for some downvotes, then it's useful, whether or not the user posting content agrees with the reason. Let it be - unless it starts a flamewar, in which case the usual process applies.

  • By char-count, yes. Consider it in the spirit, "I'm downvoting" versus "I'm downvoting because these reasons <listed reasons>". – user53718 Feb 28 '17 at 23:38

It seems like you already raised the point about "Last I knew this was considered rude and a violation of the be nice policy." in What is rude on The Workplace?

Doesn't the voting of that answer and the comments that followed indicate that it isn't considered rude to use "-1" at the start of a comment?

Maybe I'm not interpreting that correctly...

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    Actually the result was that -1 in comments was not allowed but that +1 was, which was what I was arguing against(the allowing of +1) – IDrinkandIKnowThings Feb 28 '17 at 22:27
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    I re-read it and I still don't see any result concluding that -1 in comments is "not allowed" or that it is rude. I'll try again, but I'm just not seeing it... – Joe Strazzere Feb 28 '17 at 22:37
  • This seems more like a comment than an answer though but hey hopefully the mods will delete this question and we can be on our way – IDrinkandIKnowThings Mar 1 '17 at 8:38
  • The whole topic seems very confused and confusing. – Joe Strazzere Mar 1 '17 at 11:53
  • So vote to close and then delete the question – IDrinkandIKnowThings Mar 2 '17 at 17:18
  • I seldom bother voting to close any question theses days. Far too many questions get closed, IMHO. It appears that you have resumed prefixing "-1" in front of your comments again, so things seem clarified for you. – Joe Strazzere Mar 2 '17 at 17:51
  • Strangly the mods are accepting flags that they are rude though... wierd huh – IDrinkandIKnowThings Mar 2 '17 at 17:58
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    @IDrinkandIKnowThings (shrug) I no longer try to make sense of all the details. I do the best I can and don't worry about the rest. – Joe Strazzere Mar 2 '17 at 18:18
  • IMO you are great. I prefer to champion for better for all. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Mar 2 '17 at 18:23

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