We have a lot of meta discussion about Good Subjective, Bad Subjective and asking the questions. We also have just as many on answering. But we don't have as many on voting.
It may come down to a personal thing, and that's fine... I just wanted to bring it up.
The specific question that came up was in regards to a game recommendation for good one-on-one play(1). I answered(2) with a system that had great rules that supported not only the answers to the question, but was also a generic system made for adapting existing source material. It also has some background issues that some find objectionable, and someone downvoted for that reason.
It isn't about the objectionable part. It's the fact that a good answer to a question was downvoted only for that reason, and it was stated as such in the comments. The system is pretty much advertised to be able to do one on one play with classic materials. The background information is tacked on for use of the rulebook as a one stop shop.
I thought long and hard about posting this question for two reasons:
- The question is subjective. Therefore our opinions inform our voting.
- The opinions on the content are perfectly valid to have.
But after consideration, it seems that the opinions on content result in a vote on points unrelated to the question. This seems like one of those points that informs what a community becomes, i.e. is it about our own reactions and opinions on questions? Even when not subjective? Or is it about putting aside any unnecessary opinions in order to answer the questions, and vote appropriately? The first way dangerously comes close to the voting process being a popularity vote, in my opinion, rather than a rationalized process based on how well the content answers the question. And so, I bring this up to get a community consensus on how our votes should be informed.
For reference, my stance on it is such:
I only vote down if the information is incorrect or inappropriate, no matter my feelings on the topic. It keeps the votes and conversation from a personal level. Especially as I might find something offensive that you don't, and vice versa. I keep it on the level of the question asked. But that's just my approach. I might withhold a positive vote based purely on my feelings on the answer. In truth, I think that's wrong also, and hadn't really appreciated it until this moment.