Voting on this site

Just a note: I’m always surprised at the low number of people who respond to our polls. You don’t have to comment, but what’s the harm in voting?

Grania suggested that some people may think that someone (i.e., me) might be able identify who voted which way, but I’m here to tell you that this is not true. I have no way of knowing who voted which way in any poll, nor would I want to know if I could.

Your vote is and will remain confidential to everyone. And, after all, a vote is a small gesture after reading a post.

 

46 Comments

  1. Serendipitydawg
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:05 am | Permalink

    The only votes I abstain from are the ones where I have no knowledge or stake in the issue. It has never occured to me that I could be identified by voting and I wouldn’t be bothered even if I could.

    • Rita Prangle
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 8:43 am | Permalink

      +1

    • Robert
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      Yes

    • Alan Jardine
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 9:43 am | Permalink

      Me too – especially when it comes to U.S. politics of which, being a dumb Brit, I know little.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted November 24, 2018 at 10:45 am | Permalink

        That’s never stopped us Yanks. 🙂

    • Posted November 24, 2018 at 11:26 am | Permalink

      +1

  2. phoffman56
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    Small point perhaps, but, as a non-USian, I don’t vote when the question involves specifically U.S. matters, e.g. what headwear should be allowed in Congress.

    • ThyroidPlanet
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:12 am | Permalink

      That’s still a matter of law – isn’t law universal?

      I know Pakistan law is quite unlike US law, but you know…

      • phoffman56
        Posted November 24, 2018 at 9:50 am | Permalink

        “…isn’t law universal?”
        No, but climate change is, for those for whom “universal” refers only to earth, not the universe; and where U.S. politicians are at present the biggest villains. So I’d vote on that.

        It would be edifying however if humans discovered scientific laws which they were confident were universal in the literal sense of that word.

      • Torbjörn Larsson
        Posted November 24, 2018 at 10:14 am | Permalink

        Then turn it around and have a general discussion & poll? (FWIW, I voted on that precisely to be nice to our host at the end of reading. But it was really a post I could easily have not read or cared to vote for.)

  3. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    I think it’d be interesting to see how results change after discussion

    For instance the poll yesterday- after voting (impulsively after reading just the un-commented-on post), I essentially had “second thoughts” (and third and fourth, etc.).

    But yesterday’s poll might have actually reduced to a quiz with a true or false answer.

    … actually quizzes would be very interesting too….

    Thanks for the work on WEIT everyone!

  4. Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    Perhaps your polls are of little interest to many of your readers. When I don’t respond to a pill, it’s often because the subject matter doesn’t matter to me!

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:34 am | Permalink

      Not interested in Politics? Not interested in religious issues? Who could that be?

      Let’s hope it is not a sample of the participation on election day.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted November 24, 2018 at 10:50 am | Permalink

        Doesn’t matter if you’re interested in politics; politics is interested in you.

        We need always stand watch over the bastards in charge.

        • Ken Phelps
          Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

          “Doesn’t matter if you’re interested in politics; politics is interested in you.”

          Precisely. When I went to Costa Rica, I learned about the local snakes. Not because I’m actually *interested* in venomous snakes…

    • Cicely Berglund
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      Is that a reverse placebo effect? Ot responding to a pill?🙈

  5. alexandra Moffat
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    As people become more and more aware of possible, probable, government,facebook etc invasions of our privacy, maybe preferences for anonymity are growing. If so, that would lead to suspicions of surveys, polls. Why that would apply to WEIT is beyond me. Sheer
    laziness?
    Count me a pollee.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      If I were using facebook, suspicion would be a valid concern. But a click here on WEIT, you are right, it’s lazy.

  6. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    Maybe we’re all statisticians who consider that a self-selected poll has unknown validity?

    😎

    cr

  7. Кузман
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    I actually didn’t realize there was a Polldaddy poll. I tend to block scripts and external sites by default.

    I assumed this last poll was more a “weigh in in the comments” sort of thing. I am a doofus.

  8. GBJames
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    Often polls have wording that fails to capture what I think about the subject. Or the nature of the choices don’t capture the nuances that allow me to pick one of the choices.

    • Posted November 24, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      And that’s why Brexit is such an awful mess.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted November 25, 2018 at 3:08 am | Permalink

      Oh, me too. Not just polls but all sorts of official forms, that subtly distort what I want to say.

      cr

  9. Charlie
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    I echo the comment that sometimes an either-or poll doesn’t reflect the complications of my views.

    But sometimes I just don’t have an immediate decision on my view. My gut reaction to the religious headgear in Congress poll was “no exceptions for religion”. Since it seems rude to force religious people to remove their headgear, my position would be all hats are fine.

    But then we run the risk of morons in ball caps and cowboy hats giving speeches to Congress pretending to be real, red-blooded, down-home Americans. In the end, because I for some reason do feel that removing hats indoors is more polite, the prospect of ball caps in Congress offends me more than allowing just religious people to wear headgear.

    • Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

      +1

    • GBJames
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      The morons are already “giving speeches to Congress pretending to be real, red-blooded, down-home Americans”. They just aren’t wearing hats when they do it.

  10. FB
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    “Grania suggested that some people may think that someone (i.e., me) might be able identify who voted which way“.

    That’s true in my case.

  11. Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Sometimes just responding to a question using a limited number of choices (sometimes just “yes” and “no”) makes the vote feel false. One can explain one’s choice in the comments but (a) this would reveal one’s vote. (I personally don’t care about this but others may.) and (b) regardless of the how one votes, it doesn’t reflect one’s opinion accurately.

  12. Weary
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    I am a sometimes voter.It often depends on the topic at hand. If the topic is fir example US specific, I am Australian, and of limited concern or impact for example I tend to leave it alone

    • Weary
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      And my keyboard clearly not letting me spell well.Sorry

  13. Michael Fisher
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    Low polling numbers: I think it is about reader/viewer ‘engagement’ as YouTube calls it. I have noticed that broken links can go unreported in comments for a few hours sometimes which suggests many people skim posts. When they see a poll at the end they might see it as an injected ad that’s going to take them god knows where! I only ever click on a WEIT poll – it’s the only place I trust to not deliver malware.

    Other possibilities:
    ** In an RSS reader the poll probably doesn’t display or can’t be interacted with.
    ** Some browsers are more secure these days & don’t permit certain scripts to run
    ** Perhaps Adblockers hide the poll from view

    • Posted November 26, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      I usually vote if I have an opinion. Waterfox and Adblock Plus don’t remove the poll.

  14. Shirley Beaver
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    I usually read your posts in the email, rarely go to the website – only for topics that particularly interest me. I didn’t even know there was such a thing as polls on some of your posts! Now that I know, I’ll visit the website more often and probably vote…

  15. SecMilChap
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Every day I read and enjoy your WebSite, and almost always learn something interesting and enjoyable. I don’t vote, and rarely care how the voting went. I vote in the USA and scrape pensions for donations to progressive pols.

  16. Posted November 24, 2018 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    I try to respond and at least click on posts but I’m just honestly overwhelmed by the sheer volume of posts in this site. I just can’t keep up. I really like everything I see but it’s just more than I can handle so I’m getting more selective about my click throughs. I wish it were not so.

    • Diane G
      Posted November 25, 2018 at 1:56 am | Permalink

      “I try to respond and at least click on posts but I’m just honestly overwhelmed by the sheer volume of posts in this site.”

      +1

  17. Posted November 24, 2018 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

    Polls?

    Haven’t seen them, but I mostly read the emails and do not comment much

    Maybe the polls should state that in the title of the email so it’s more obvious to oblivious people like me

  18. Michael Clarke
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    When a poll is very American specific I don’t feel “entitled” to vote. To a non-American it seems rather presumptuous to voice opinions publicly on the American House of Representatives dress code.

  19. Hrafn
    Posted November 24, 2018 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

    I’m fairly sure the polls don’t show up on my favored browser (Waterfox).

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted November 24, 2018 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

      I also use the wonderful Waterfox 56.2.5 [64-bit], but I see the polls. Maybe our settings are different though.

      TEST. Can you see the poll at the bottom of THIS POST between “Please vote:” & “h/t: cesar”?

  20. Dale Franzwa
    Posted November 25, 2018 at 12:24 am | Permalink

    Several times you’ve announced a poll. I’ve tried to vote but the poll is missing. My browser is Firefox. Don’t know what’s happening.

  21. Posted November 27, 2018 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    If it is about the US I will not vote! I must have missed some not having the interweb at home…

  22. Posted December 9, 2018 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    Those of us who read you through a feed reader may not even see the poll

    • Posted December 9, 2018 at 11:07 am | Permalink

      If you don’t, perhaps it is time to get a new feed reader. I use the excellent web-based one, Inoreader, which handles the polls just fine.


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