A friend of mine sent me this the other day.
Two AVC posts were at or near the top of Hacker News.
But I did not go and read the comments as I have found the comments at Hacker News emotionally challenging for me.
As many of you know, I have also found the comments here at AVC emotionally challenging for me.
One of the suggestions I received when I blogged about that recently was to charge for comments.
I don’t want to charge for commenting because I want this to be an equal opportunity place for people to speak.
However, when something is free, it is abused. We have spam and trolls.
One mechanism that I like is Karma. You are given Karma when you join a system, and you may earn more Karma every month to replenish your supply. You spend Karma to make a comment. And if your comment is popular, you can earn more Karma. If your comment is deemed to be spam or against the community rules, you lose Karma.
Creating a native currency inside a social system is powerful. It allows you to start “charging” for things that should have a cost associated with them while still allowing the system to be “free to use.”
I am not planning on adding Karma to the AVC comments because Disqus doesn’t support this feature and I’m not eager to make any changes to the technology I use to put this blog out every day. I mean that. So if you email me or leave a comment suggesting I move to a new comment system, I am going to ignore it.
But this idea, combined with the ability to spin up a crypto-token simply and easily, is pretty powerful. A number of social platforms are doing this. Reddit is one that seems to be making a version of this work.
If I was starting over from scratch, I’d build on top of that idea. I think it would make things a lot better.
https://www.karmacircles.com here is one an acquaintance started, different sort of thing but still Karma.
Then check out the Donut coin on Reddit’s Ethtrader. https://www.reddit.com/r/do…
i’ve heard there’s Domynut coin for bloggers in the works. Fred’s salvation.
The problem with Karma, as Reddit has shown, is it becomes a dislike or disagree button versus “this is spam/unrelated”
Sorry can’t help myself…https://www.youtube.com/wat…
Most underrated comment today 🙂
“I’d build on top of that idea” liking this I’m not on fire but certainly smoking !!
Thank you Mr. Wilson for sharing your opinions that help guide us along the way in our own technological / entrepreneurial paths as well as exhibiting great strength when expressing how our comments may affect you.
I tried to be apart of the community at Hacker News a decade ago. (Before I found this Fred’s blog.) For some reason I was black balled. There was no recourse in their system. Emails went unanswered to the organizers.That’s not to say that karma isn’t the way to go. Stack Overflow uses a version of this as well. It has to be possible to figure out what went wrong and correct it, though.
Interesting.At one time we would do anything for eyeballs.Then anything for engagement, of any kind.Now we want civility and ease and a community structure that polices itself.Thanks for alerting me on the Karma idea.
And authenticity. We want authenticity 🙂
I have referenced The 500 Year Delta here before. The biggest thing I took from their predictions was that an over mediated world would make authenticity scarce.The howling, always on audience makes originality too risky.
The consumer dapp experience is still way too slow and clunky. Unless there is some kind of user experience that leverages an open protocols and integration with other applications, something like stackoverflows reputation system is way better.
metamask coming for the throne in 2019
Slow could be seen as a pleasing feature in this world gone hyper NOW!!!
THE GREAT FRED WILSON :Was the hijacking in question by a contributor who changed their handle on hacker to jger regarding the open letter to Jeff Bezos that could have been lifted from the original NYT or other news outlet republishing it the issue. (You do realize other news outlets republished and monetarized off the original they all do it)Just do what you want with your blog your paying for. Stop all this childish I am going home with my ball it.Just a lot of time spent trying to convince people who supported your blog for years of things you really want to change. If you want to make what you read tolerable to your eyes have at it. But the weekly excuses why you will do something you already wanted to do is a waste of time. Just do it. Until the majority locates a VC blogger that can equal your content and allow for varying views they like and don’t like you are the man. There is a Google, Facebook or Instagram of blog content in the making that will publish daily going to replace you. Nothing lasts forever even the Great Fred Wilson.We know there will be supporters of the Great Fred Wilson attempting to defend but who cares. Might as well get it all out the way before the grade school upvote friend commenter go into the new karma system.Captain Obvious!#UNEQUIVOCALLYUNAPOLOGETICALLYINDEPENDENT
Offensive, but maybe there’s something of a point in there. I try not to try to speculate about or understand deep motives and just take AVC for what it does have.It has seemed that Fred is concerned about something. For some of the candidate concerns, there were some suggestions, e.g., for the labor, hire an intern. For more, I’d suggest the NYC remark f’get about it. For more, there are professionals who try to fathom various concerns.
All these reputation systems fall down based on Sybil attacks. That needs to be solved first for these systems to perform properly.
They also fall down on the fact that interesting people will not abide.
Sybil, As in Fawlty Towers? 😉
Fred – did you read the SlateStarCodes reddit thread saga – it is chilling and disturbing – https://slatestarcodex.com/… and this good twitter thread provide a meta narrative https://twitter.com/Scholar….
“You are given Karma when you join a system”.Karma and Dharma form one of the frameworks of Indian philosophy. Dating back to the Upanishads (600-800 BCE) and the Bhagvad Gita ( ~ 2nd century BCE).Karma means an “action” or “deed”. Nobody can give you Karma.The philosophical principle of karma includes, but is not limited to, the idea that the “action” of an individual leads to a future “effect” upon that individual. In many ways, Karma is properly applied in the context of Dharma.What you probably mean is something like “Karma points” in a nod to the original philosophical framework of Karma.p.s. Familiar with reddit karma, and the gazillion other things that the word karma is attached to.
Curious that sometimes the distance between the US and India is much greater than the 24,000 miles or so of the circumference of the earth!!!
No distance greater than the distance between minds.And no distance so great that it cannot be bridged by the mind.
as your aware We are Borg
You got me: I’m still struggling to get good understanding of a lot of US men and nearly all US women. To me, India is so different it is a much harder challenge.So, it’s an ancient civilization, that comparatively has the US still in diapers. The variety north to south, east to west in just the geography is awesome. Then there’s the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea, but from what I’ve heard about India it hasn’t emphasized either of those two — a bit amazing. Bet there’s some good lobsters, oysters, clams, 20 pound fish, etc. out there!There have been several Hollywood movies about India. One had the drop dead gorgeous (my mother looked a lot like her, and my high school girlfriend was prettier) Elizabeth Taylor: In the movie, clearly her character didn’t understand India, and to me, from the movie, no wonder!Then there was a movie about Gandhi where, IIRC, it appeared that he confessed, with some pleasure, about the mysticism of India confusing the British! Much of the movie looked like mysticism to me!Then there are the magnificent accomplishments over the ages including in modern science and math, apparently a lot in chemistry, next to just head splitting frustrating poverty. It appears that much of the culture has gotten used to the poverty and just accepts it — given up on growing, developing out of it. Yes, the US has apparently given up on some things it shouldn’t.Then for the mysticism — England, France, Germany and then the US tried hard to get rid of anything so vague and unspecific.One of the issues for people in general is, when face to face, can they read with subtle social clues from facial expressions and tone of voice, how things are said and what that is related but not said? Already in the US that stuff is different across several major subdivisions of the US, and I’ve noticed that it’s still more different with English, French, and German people visiting the US. From my experience, for people from India, it’s still more different.At IBM’s Watson lab, I worked a little with a guy from India. He was a nice guy, good smile, terrific with Unix, good at small talk, but still something was different, like he deserved an Academy Award for playing a character other than himself.E.g., one of the challenges, at least in the US, is talking to women: Even if are in a grocery store and just trying to ask where can find the cinnamon rolls or sticky buns, or if they even have them, which I actually did last week, there is the consideration that there might be flirting going on. If I don’t smile or say something off just the narrow question, she might think that, even with her nice smile and head tossing, freshly washed, beautiful below the shoulder long hair (she had been working quite hard to be pretty), etc., I didn’t like her; if I try to be less stiff, she might think I was flirting. I have to work on that one at least once a week, and that’s just with US women.If my startup is successful (I’m not wasting time now since my new server is busy doing a file backup!) and I hire some women, I’ll want at least two because, like VP Pence, I’m afraid ever to be with just one!As I understand some Islamic countries, a man asking a woman a simple question in a grocery store about where to find something might get some men in her family all up on their hind legs — I’d be terrified of saying the wrong thing and guess I might have to run for my life; for India I know even less!Such clues are at least a little less important in math, physics, and computing than some other fields and are not one of my better talents. I could play a leading role in Revenge of the Nerds just playing myself even without a script! Since I have to strain just in the US, strain more for Europe, am afraid of Islamic countries, I’d be lost forever in India!!!It’s not you or India. And it’s not good or bad since there’s plenty both right and wrong in both places. Instead, to me, it’s the distance!!Ah, distance is a symmetric function; since you believe the distance can be crossed, maybe I should not give up!
I once read something, somewhere.. it went like this:The shores of mind and soul, that is all in sight.Sometimes it is a peaceful beach and sometimes an impossible cliff.Love, hate.. the volcano inside. Be peaceful, you might.I walked your paths trying to understand the pain till’ the sun went down. It was dark.I enjoyed the mist and loved our time but the time has come to sail away.As the waves recede and the sails inflate I think about the time we shared.Now in my heart, the shores of your mind and soul are mine.
I can choose to give you Karma Adhyatmik or otherwise
to put it anothert way, it looks like king fred’s karma has run over his dogma
Just made me realize this is why I so strongly despise down votes – it’s a negative action that adds now qualitative value; on top of allowing a person being lazy to reward them with a quick dopamine hit by turning a down arrow.
It’s funny that on your screenshot is #4 China punishes based on “social credit”. Made this post even more relevant. Karma vs Social Credit and how to use social data to craft behavior.
I don’t believe for a minute that AVC readers would pay to comment – even via an alluring stablecoin. Stablecoins are a hidden scam. The $ interest lost for every $ used to purchase a stable coin compounded over a lifetime needs to be understood – especially by the young. At 2.5%, users are paying stablecoin issuers $60 billion in lost interest per year.
Some kind of delay built in before launching a comment. “Do you really want to say this”.
Yes. I’ve been saying that Disqus, Twitter, Slack, FB, all need a friendly AI to let people know when their words might offend. Just that extra five seconds of having to think twice could be really helpful.
Seriously? FRED once called this a bar. This blog is strictly Entertainment and a lot of self promotion. I know we like to make Fred feel like he is writing thought provoking things and sharing feel knowledge, but let’s be truthful. If you want deep knowledge on a subject – don’t go to a bar. Read an academic paper – or listen to a conference call.
This has nothing even remotely to do with my comment.
The general point that I took from your comment is that Fred should have his blog modified so that we all can take a “5 seconds” to see if we are offending anyone. I simply replied that this is foolish nonsence is the context of the blog comments as unlike professional publications which are peer reviewed and conference call which are subject to SEC laws, a bar and this blog and simply off the top remarks. This blog should not be taken seriously by anyone under 30 – particulalry the bitcoin Ponzi scheme
You didn’t take it from Tom’s original comment to which I responded? Why not respond to him and call his thoughts foolish nonsense?But thanks for demonstrating a use case for my idea.
That, and/or an Undo Comment feature, like Gmail’s Undo Send Mail.Paul Buchheit (Gmail creator) had a post long back where he said an undo feature should be built into many apps.
Social Experiment: “This chat room charges you a penny for every character you type” https://www.theverge.com/20…
Want to see how valuable this blog really is, charge for it.
At Hacker News, karma is a goofy thing:Currently my Hacker News karma is 2587.But Hacker News has a seriously tightly knit, determined, angry clique of true believers that CO2 is about to ruin the earth, e.g., the current thread there athttps://news.ycombinator.co…That clique makes AOC sound like a 1890s coal, coke, steel, rail, etc. industrialist!I’ve lost 100+ karma points at Hacker News claiming as in”The Great Global Warming Swindle”athttps://www.youtube.com/wat…that CO2 is harmless.So, at Hacker News, can get politically correct cliques and tribes who regard everyone else as a heretic and get organized, gang up, pile on, and attack karma.Hacker News has another phobia — humor. No levity allowed. Violators are punished with karma attacks.There are some very bright people on Hacker News, lots of good mathematicians and physicists and, of course, lots of relatively good computer science students.That said, somehow there are too many others at Hacker News who are not bright at all and attack in dumb ways in anonymous herds.My views on CO2 aside, the Hacker News social norms will tend to have a super tough time with anything very ambiguous and new.Sad situation since for nearly all we want, newness, while not a sufficient condition, certainly is a necessary one.Overall, AVC has a top of the heap, dream Internet audience, community, comment contents, etc. IMHO there is little or nothing to be borrowed from Hacker News to improve AVC.Maybe someone with some good talent for applied math research could look at the PC, herd, clique, in-group, gang, etc. behavior on Hacker News and discover the causes and cures. Not me, not on that topic!!
Diversity is a fun topic to get dogpile on over there too. (Although I get frequent love taps on c02 and renewables too – which makes no sense with a theoretically technical community). The James Damore episode at displaying how much people can’t (apparently) actually read – with mobs formIng to incorrect each other…
Fred, you’re generally a strong advocate of openness and transparency, though your emotional attachment to your blog, your little baby, seems to be a bit in conflict w/ that objective. Not sure your readers would conclude your blog is full of trolls, spam or a great deal of abuse. On occasion, for sure, things may be pushed a bit and get somewhat heated, but conflict (I’d prefer the term disagreement) can be healthy and informative. A sanitized blog, per your or anyone else’s def, isn’t healthy. I think most of your readers would conclude the way it was was generally (and I emphasize “generally”) fine…actually, more than fine, it was exceptional. Dissenters and outliers are a good thing. Don’t unintentionally turn your blog into New Coke.
Very true. This is one of the better communities on the internet. And by some distance.I have learned a lot from comments I deeply disagreed with. The last thing we want is a homogenous crowd who will say nothing but the nicest things to each other and stay away from controversy.Having said that, I can see why a few commenters cause deep angst and heartburn. I do not know if there is an easy solution except to ignore. It really is not worth throwing all the good away just to negate a little bad.And every comment the majority dislikes will still have a minority following. That’s the way democracies are supposed to work.
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yes and no.yes of course that is how we learn.no–these discussion were never made prior to the time running up to the last presidential election.it is politicalization that drives this not opinions and discussions.if this very discussion itself–an interesting one in my opinion–can not bring out people who need to express their beliefs in this thread that they think climate change is stupid, then who needs it.that’s the elephant in the room. nothing else.
Well prior to the election run-up, Fred’s posts — and many comment threads — about diversity, or efforts to boost the work of people who are under-represented in tech, frequently brought out trollish behavior and gaslighting.So I think that there’s another elephant in the room.
Do not disagree. It’s pretty easy to identify topics that are gonna inspire “inappropriate” behavior. I think some of those topics, and subsequent comments, have lead many, particularly females, to sadly abandon ship. (This blog is pretty male dominated.) Ideally there shouldn’t be topic avoidance, but I certainly can understand the rationale for doing so.
Good point and sadly true.
Yes, but.Politics is one thing in this era.I don’t remember anyone nor listen to anyone that says that diversity is not the goal.Many argue about how to get there.I’m on your side on this but I don’t think all these elephants are the same.I’m not looking for peace and tranquility. Just not shit and bullshit.
If you heard a wish for peace and tranquility in my response, you misunderstood me.
I think I understand you. And very much respect your views–and read your newsletter btw!
Thanks for reading, and for your kind words. Likewise, and I know you’re listening, too.On reflection, I’m wondering whether emotional reactions that some long-timers are having indicate that you absolutely *do* understand.Disclaimer (lol): I’m not a linguist or sociologist and tbh I have checked out of political talk here so I’m not watching closely — now I read Fred’s post by email and dip in to comments less frequently.Hypothesis-ish question: Is the experience that some of us have often had here — dating to well before the 2016 runup — similar to the experience some of you are having here now?
Stuff changes.The world, the community, ourselves in the face of it.Back when, these comments drove a fair share of my consulting work. Not any longer.Back when. I made new friendships here and can count a solid number of true friendships that originated then and are part of my life today. None new that I can think of in the last few years, though some have gone to the wayside from discussions here.I can’t explain this. But it is reality for me at least.
The tides have shifted. Decorum, civility, etc., or the lack thereof, sadly have diff protocols or standards today. When someone interjects commentary that seemingly is a non-sequitur to the topic at large, I turn the channel. Personal assaults, which imo aren’t too frequent here, is a totally diff issue (and understandably disturbing.).
Dunno…I think people have a right to hang where their standards are of the community.That is my point.I’m at peace with this and it works in my world.
We live in an imperfect world that seemingly is more desperate, fragmented and polarized than ever before. Consensus on standards is quite subjective. Deviation from the norm is gonna vary by individual. The occasional snark isn’t gonna get my knickers in a twist, as long as the overall experience is rewarding and informative. Homogenization is bland and lacks distinction. You don’t want to kill what makes a brand unique and special, as I believe you know as well as any.
The Me Generation has turned their children (with the help of social media) into the ME ME ME generation.Voters vote not for the best candidate, but for the candidate that validates their views. Politics has become Narcissism Tinder.People who have to have their values reflected in their community are the problem (as you reference below). That’s ok when it is you – you are old and not of much importance.But the kids have patterned themselves after their BFF Boomer parents.It is going to be bad.
Thanks.I disagree though in both the cause and effect.I am quite optimistic.The only and best answer is diversity and new solutions. New generations recently elected give me great hope.I will take the frictions of new ideas and diversity of opinions as the grist to a new normal and will support it to happen.
I am up for your last paragraph,But, when people dictate the standards that suit them, you have a race to the bottom.Progressive PM in Canada turns out to be a crony capitalist because it suits his re-election needs. He has a standard, which is ‘if I do it, it is ethical.’Standards need to be objective. Or else the center will not hold.
I hesitate to define or embrace the idea of objectivity as a goal as I don’t know how to get there.Personally or in my work.I am playing it by my gut and pushing where i feel it needs to go.Unfortunately or not, the number of conservative friends that are still within my circle of people I dig deep into stuff with has lessened. Not gone away, but smaller.I cherish them more as a rarity and an important balance to me.
Big ups to you for doing so.My personality bible is enneagram based. The older I get, the more I see people connected to their innate nature.Personality begets Philosophy begets Attitudes begets Actions.Balancing your innate nature is critical.For me, objective is easy. Figuring out what I want is hard. Cutting people slack when discussing vital issues – the nature & need of American democracy for instance – even harder.It sounds dumb, but being right isn’t anywhere near being happy or successful. Just like being successful isn’t anywhere near living right or being happy.Fun ride life is.
Indeed it is.I work hard at it.Meditation, mindfulness and Beginners Mind awareness really help me.Hardest thing is politics as honestly I’ve never loved or hated a political character prior. Placing/managing/acting on my disdain for current administration is an exercise in control i often fail at.Have a great week.
Last paragraph is tombstone material. I would just edit it from “being right” to “proving that you are right to others”Looking for and fining truth is always of value. It just has nothing to do with external success.
Narcissism – would have been a better title for this blog post. Do you really think Fred has changed his opinion – based on the comments – on anything he blogged about over the past 5 years?
Conflict or confrontation – there’s nothing inherently wrong with them, they’re neutral.It’s interesting to me he’s brainstorming of ways for features for comment systems when he himself has an aversion to them – that’s not how products improve. If it’s emotion being triggered then there’s learning and understanding that can happen internally – avoidance is simply a coping mechanism, however with enough avoidance the reactiveness will grow the deeper you move into certain realms without having the social feedback from all sides to use to gauge where you’re at, what you’re doing, the climate of what you’re doing.The statement of how Reddit or even HN’s Karma systems are working, especially with upvotes/downvotes – losing Karma with downvotes ignores fundamental problems whether that’s trolls who follow you around and downvote anything you say, or brigading, or organizations with special interests or biases who want to perpetuate certain sentiment, etc.There are a few improvements that communities like AVC could greatly benefit from, maybe some day I will be able to implement them.
“If I was starting over from scratch, I’d build on top of that idea. I think it would make things a lot better.”It doesn’t have to be from scratch. Just iterate the thing. That’s what the entrepreneurs you invest in do all the time. See it as a pivot for better product-market fit.You need to be more decisive about this because by continuing to refer to it but without taking action you are inadvertently contributing to the problem in a different way. People will now be wondering if they are viewed as a troll, a gadfly, a PITA, and it becomes corrosive to the collective consciousness of the space. Please do something.
Isn’t this how influencers are born?
I think Stack Overflow is handling things well. You start out with the ability to ask and answer questions and upvoting. With more reputation you gain more rights, like comments to questions. Downvoting removes points from your reputation score, since an informative comment is better regarded than a simple downvote click.I know it’s a Q&A forum, but I like your idea for a comments section. Still I am not sure how it would punish people with different opinions.
Product hunt did something similar
I’m a long time member of both this blog and Hacker News. I’m not certain when you had your adverse reaction to HN. I know they have several employees working on improving the site and I think it has gotten better. I’ve told people if they post their new startup to HN for comment they better be prepared. Several folks will be absolutely brutal in their comments leaving you depressed. But there will be a few comments for change or improvements that will make your product much better if you listen to them. The number of very intelligent people on both AVC and HN is quite high.
CONTRIBUTORS:We pride ourselves in being independent from day one of registering to vote over thirty years ago.We equally have contempt for both political parties for munipulating their base. (The base actually allowing themselves to be munipulated)We side 75% of the time on social issues with one side and 80% on fiscal principals the other side no longer even trys to support before 2016.This civility that is only embraced by one side is the reason for the situation at hand that has comprised the national security of the United States and allowed conspiracy theorist to appear authentic.This weakness of the left being displayed right before our eyes will again become a big mistake only the other side of the aisle will continue to stomp loudly. Just weak, weak and more weak.Captain Obvious!#UNEQUIVOCALLYUNAPOLOGETICALLYINDEPENDENT
So, we agree on one thing: Twitter should drop the ads and start charging large audience users for their reach. Finally, I honestly thought you would never come around.At this point, if we were on the outdoor rink at the West Hill Community Association in Prince Albert Sk, circa 1977, the consensus would absolutely be this:’ Take your puck and go home. Or don’t take your puck and we will all keep playing. But FFS, either take your puck and go home or keep playing . Enough whining already. ‘
This is literally what reddit does with “carma”
Sounds like what Tapatalk is doing, particularly with the crypto angle. And they certainly have the user base to pull it off.
It certainly helps clear out the trolls and “burner” commenting accounts, that’s for sure. The biggest challenge I see on Reditt and other Karma-style forms is that the “clout” accumulates among a small group of super users.Regular commenters and positive contributors should certainly have their voice elevated. However, it can lead to the less frequent voices contributing less.
Your blog is a service to people like us who are venturing, learning and unlearning many aspects of VC world. I’m sure many entrepreneurs also think like that. The first thing in the morning I read each day (when you were in East coast) is your blog and I wonder how come a VC being so busy still has time to write one blog (of great content) each day. You have a certain type of educated and socially established audience who read and comment on your blogs. Though I have noticed particularly may be one or two take this opportunity to be malicious, but you should think that you are living rent free in their head. They are responsible for their karma of spending their important 10mins of their irretrievable time trolling you. It is nice to talk about Karma, specially today is Shivratri, the day to celebrate the biggest yogi lord shiva, who personifies the practice of yoga, the supreme consciousness behind the universe and the birth of the word ‘OM’. If you google, you can read the connection with Quantum mechanics and particle physics. Interesting to read.
Christians – crucify them.Witches – burn them.Heretics – excommunicate them.Trolls – ??????