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What is the purpose of the disagree option?
Thread poster: Gerardo Comino

Gerardo Comino  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Sep 22, 2005

Hi everybody,

To be honest I am almost new in this service, for me it is a very good way of entertaining, searching, learning, and getting in contact with others... I really found it great.

However, I have noticed that sometimes coments of one translator are against the other, like in a competition. It seems to be common to offer an aswer and mark with your "Disagree" the rest, even if they are not totally sure and it is only an opinion.

Why do you think that people disagree? Is it to get the points? and then, when to disagree? What is the purpose of the disagree option? Should we provide evidences of the wrong answer with references?

Thanks

Gerardo


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GoodWords  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 11:56
Spanish to English
+ ...
To indicate wrong answers Sep 22, 2005

Wisely used, the "disagree" option indicates an answer that is simply wrong; for example when someone has been deceived by a false friend, led astray by a tricky syntax or caught out by a regional meaning that they're unfamiliar with, they may have suggested a translation that just does not mean the same thing as the source at all. When you see an answer like that, it makes you want to alert the colleague who posted the query that he or she should not use it in his or her translation.

If you keep on participating in KudoZ, sooner or later you will surely see some answers that merit a "disagree". When "disagrees" are politely and respectfully explained, and backed with reliable references, they can contribute to a valuable learning experience for everyone.

[Edited at 2006-01-09 21:22]


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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 14:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Also a learning/teaching feature Sep 23, 2005

Hi Gerardo,

I 100% agree w/ Goodwords. Besides, I should also say that when I answer a Kudoz question, I don´t agree/disagree with my colleagues, unless it is really necessary, i.e.
1) agree if somebody gave same answer I did and almost same time or maybe 2 min. earlier and I hadn`t seen it;
2) agree if somebody gave another answer to the question, different from mine, but equally rigth;
3) disagree if I consider this answer COMPLETELY, TERRIBLE, AWFULLY wrong, which could mislead asker and other colleagues.

I also suggest you to read Kudoz rules carefully for more information. Just in case, I am posting below some excerpts. I hope you find them useful.

"4.2 If you answer KudoZ questions, be prepared for colleagues to comment both positively and negatively on your terminology. Do not take it personally5.1 - Agrees and disagrees should be based solely on linguistic evaluation of answers provided
5.3 - To disagree, one must enter linguistic justification. Personal comments are strictly prohibit."

Walter

[Edited at 2005-09-23 02:14]


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Luis Zepeda
United States
Local time: 10:56
Spanish to English
+ ...
What is the purpose of the disagree option? Sep 23, 2005

Walter Landesman wrote:

Hi Gerardo,

I 100% agree w/ Goodwords. Besides, I should also say that when I answer a Kudoz question, I don´t agree/disagree with my colleagues, unless it is really necessary, i.e.
1) agree if somebody gave same answer I did and almost same time or maybe 2 min. earlier and I hadn`t seen it;
2) agree if somebody gave another answer to the question,

"4.2 If you answer KudoZ questions, be prepared for colleagues to comment both positively and negatively on your terminology. Do not take it personally5.1 - Agrees and disagrees should be based solely on linguistic evaluation of answers provided
5.3 - To disagree, one must enter linguistic justification. Personal comments are strictly prohibit."

Walter

[Edited at 2005-09-23 02:14]


I am looking for the agree button on this posting for the above comment but cannot find it. I agree with the above statements 100% and have in many occassions hidden my answers as another member answered at the same time, or gave a more complete answer.

I am also of the opinion that all disagrees should state why, not just "disagree" and the personal language preference of the contributor.


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Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 11:56
German to English
Purpose of disagree Sep 23, 2005

Luis Zepeda wrote:

I am also of the opinion that all disagrees should state why, not just "disagree" and the personal language preference of the contributor.


Luis, it is technically impossible to disagree without providing a comment. I just now experimented to see if the system is working properly. I disagreed with a perfectly fine answer and was unable to execute the action. I received this message in bold red letters:

"You must enter a comment when disagreeing or making a neutral peer comment."


[Edited at 2005-09-23 03:06]


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Jake Estrada  Identity Verified
Philippines
Local time: 01:56
Member (2003)
English to Tagalog
+ ...
useful in a venue of free exchange of thoughts Sep 23, 2005

in addition to the replies above, the agree/disagree feature may have been designed as a counter-check mechanism to ensure the correctness or appropriateness of the answers that are provided, in a venue (such as the internet) where asker and answerer most often do not know, or come face-to-face with, each other and there is little opportunity or facility to verify an answer.

this appears to be most especially useful in subcommunities (language pairs) that have relatively few members, it is crucial for an asker to get a confirmation from another party as to whether a given answer could be trusted and hence used as intended.

as is the case in any venue where the free exchange of thoughts are welcome or encouraged, one could always expect a tendency for such a feedback feature to be used in a malicious way or in a manner that brings confusion...however, rest assured that this deviant bent always faces correction as more and more thoughts come in, and eventually the most valid and feedback (agree/disagree) will outweigh the incorrect one(s)


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Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 11:56
German to English
Quality control Sep 23, 2005

Jake Estrada wrote:

in addition to the replies above, the agree/disagree feature may have been designed as a counter-check mechanism to ensure the correctness or appropriateness of the answers that are provided, in a venue (such as the internet) where asker and answerer most often do not know, or come face-to-face with, each other and there is little opportunity or facility to verify an answer.



Yes, Jake, thanks for reminding us that peer comments serve an important quality control function. Translators need some way to confirm that a term is indeed acceptable. In my opinion, well-documented answers are also part of the KudoZ quality control system.


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Gerardo Comino  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
What about if somebody disagree to an option which is correct? Sep 23, 2005

Hi,

Sometimes, I see that someone disagree with an aswer and the reasons are, "I don´t think..." what sometimes leads to the error.

Would it be better to use always the neutral option?


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Nikki Graham  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:56
Partial member (2003)
Spanish to English
Nobody is infallible Sep 23, 2005

Gerardo Comino wrote:


Hi,

Sometimes, I see that someone disagree with an aswer and the reasons are, "I don´t think..." what sometimes leads to the error.

Would it be better to use always the neutral option?


No, I don't think you should use the neutral option if you disagree. But nobody is perfect. You may see that someone has disagreed with an answer that you believe to be correct. So one of you is wrong. It could be you, it could be the disagreer. But if the person who has disagreed genuinely believes that the answer is wrong, they have acted in good faith. It is then the answerer's job to try to convince the disagreer that his/her answer is actually correct.

Signed by someone who has no doubt disagreed with some answers that she shouldn't have, and agreed with a whole lot more she shouldn't have either!


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Kirill Semenov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 20:56
Member (2004)
English to Russian
+ ...
Disagree with someone's disagree? :) Sep 23, 2005

I know it may seem like complicating the system even further, still I just thought that maybe it's also possible to introduce a disagree with a disagreeing comment? I mean if a peer sees a disagree which is totally unjustified, (s)he may disagree with the disagreeing comment and thus nullify it? Just an idea, though...

[Edited at 2005-09-23 16:24]


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NancyLynn
Canada
Local time: 13:56
Member (2002)
French to English
+ ...
Just agree with the answer, Kirill Sep 23, 2005

Kirill Semenov wrote:

I know it may seem like complicating the system even further, still I just thought that maybe it's also possible to introduce a disagree with a disagreeing comment? I mean if a peer sees a disagree which is totally unjustified, (s)he may disagree with the disagreeing comment and thus nullify it? Just an idea, though...

[Edited at 2005-09-23 16:24]


If you disagree with a disagree I posted, for example, just agree with the answer, and that statistically nullifies my disagree, plus if you put in the comments field something like 'why not, Nancy? this term is commonly used in XX', will let everyone know where you stand.

Nancy


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Gerardo Comino  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
reconsideration Sep 23, 2005

Why not to say?

Could you please the references that I enclose and reconsider your opinion?

I think it is polite and useful.


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Tina Vonhof  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 11:56
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Don't start an argument Sep 23, 2005

Gerardo Comino wrote:

Why not to say?

Could you please the references that I enclose and reconsider your opinion?

I think it is polite and useful.



Although I agree that it might be useful, it is better not to start an argument. Such arguments sometimes get out of hand. Just wait and see if others share your opinion and leave it up to the asker to make up his/her mind.

I have something to add to all the good suggestions given above: sometimes I see people say disagree or neutral when they actually agree with the answer but disagree with some other comment the answerer has made or don't like the reference. That should have been an agree with a comment added. So, read the answer again carefully before you enter your response.


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gad
United States
Local time: 13:56
Member
French to English
I agree with this Sep 25, 2005

Kim Metzger wrote:

it is technically impossible to disagree without providing a comment. I just now experimented to see if the system is working properly. I disagreed with a perfectly fine answer and was unable to execute the action. I received this message in bold red letters:

"You must enter a comment when disagreeing or making a neutral peer comment."


[Edited at 2005-09-23 03:06]


That is GOOD. A person SHOULD explain the disagreement. If it's something dumb or a person vendetta or whatever, then that can be addressed by a moderator - but if it's for a valid reason, then of course that should be allowed, WITH the comment, because how can you say an answer is wrong but not say why?


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Fuad Yahya  Identity Verified
Arabic
+ ...
Good observations and valid questions Sep 25, 2005

Gerardo Comino wrote:

sometimes comments of one translator are against the other, like in a competition.



You are right. It is not the purpose of KudoZ to be the occasion for contrariness, but KudoZ is structured like a competitive game with prizes as incentive. If played in good spirit, KudoZ can be a healthy competition to provide the best help for a fellow translator. Sometimes, it is true, the competitiveness goes awry and some instances of meanness may arise. We hope that such instances remain few and far in between.

Gerardo Comino wrote:

It seems to be common to offer an aswer and mark with your "Disagree" the rest



In my opinion, that is not fair. An answerer is a participant in the competitive game. As such, the answerer should refrain from voting against the other answers, because that would involve a conflict of interest. But people still do that. It is not against the rules (although I think it should be), and some people would do anything to win a competition.

Gerardo Comino wrote:

Why do you think that people disagree? Is it to get the points?



Why people disagree and why they vote "disagree" are two different things. People disagree with an answer because they find the answer disagreeable, incorrect, wrong.

If they think they know the correct answer, they should participate by suggesting the correct answer instead of voting against the "wrong" answer. If the answer they consider correct has already been posted by someone else, they should participate by voting for the correct answer instead of voting directly against the wrong answer.

Instead of providing the correct answer or voting for ther right answer, why do people choose to vote directly against the "wrong" answer using the "disagree" vote? Mainly because it is there. It is an option that exists. If you create something, people will use it, not matter how useless.

Gerardo Comino wrote:

when to disagree?



I can hardly think of a good time to use the "disagree" vote, except perhaps in those instances when an asker has chosen an answer too hastily and incorrectly. That is why many of us have been calling for a mandatory 24-hour waiting period before an asker can choose an answer. When the wrong answer has been chosen by the asker, many of us feel an obligation to make the point very strongly, and the disagree vote seems to accomplish that. I can hardly think of any other situation in which I would use the disagree vote.

Gerardo Comino wrote:

What is the purpose of the disagree option?



The declared purpose of the disagree vote is like the declared purpose of the agree vote: to help the asker choose the right answer, because, by definition, the asker does not konw. If the asker know, he would not have asked.

That is the declared purpose. But the actual use seems to be somewhat different. In most of the situations I have seen, the disagree vote is used as a stinging indictment of an answer that is found to be not just incorrect, but totally out of place, such as an answer given by someone who does not know the language pair involved. The disagree vote, in these instances, is an expression not only of disagreemnt but also of disapproval.

In my judgment, the KudoZ game could be played quite effectively with one type of vote only, the agree vote. The answer that garners the greatest number of votes will emerge as the one enjoying the greatest support, while the answer that gets the least votes or no votes will be seen as enjoying the least support. Vote-wise, that should be sufficient to help the asker choose the best answer. Of course, what helps the asker most is not the votes alone, but the comments on the answers. Comments, as we know are often a mixture of praise, criticism, and additional information. That is why I think comments should be separate from votes. One should be able to commenet without voting, and vote (agreeing only) without commenting. One should be able to vote only once, of course, but commening should be open for multiple entries by the same commentator. Votes (agree only) should be anonymous. There is no need for me to know who agreed with me. This anonymity will help eliminate the practice of reciprocal voting or any other kind of quid pro quo: I agree with you, you agree with me. Comments, however, should never be anonymous, no matter what the content is, even if totally in favor. That is my opinion, which is a minority position, possibly a minority of one.

Gerardo Comino wrote:

Should we provide evidences of the wrong answer with references?



So long as the "disagree" option exists, then, if you ever wish to use it, it is required that you provide some support for your disagree vote.


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