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Mar 4, 2013 01:13 PM

One more plea for a "Like" button


The What's For Dinner threads have been running over 300 posts for as little as 3 days. Part of the reason is that many posters simply react to the meal being described rather than adding crucial information or posing an important question. If there were a like button, I believe that this would cut down on the idle "Mmmm. That sounds so good" posts.

  1. A pointless feature. Better if the mods merely delete nonsubstantive posts after awhile, which they seem to do anyway.

    20 Replies
    1. re: GH1618

      I understand roxlet's sentiment is coming from a good place, but you're right, GH1618--a "like" button would turn posts into meaningless popularity contests.

      Agree also that mods should delete all "+1" and "me too" posts, *unless* they also contribute additional depth to the conversation. This helps to maintain what Mr. Leff called a high signal:noise.

      When you have quantity overruling quality, you get Yelp-- i.e. loads of superficial input with little depth. Stars and "likes" and all that jazz gets you 5-star McDonald's reviews.

      Mr Taster

      1. re: Mr Taster

        Agreed. I'd hate to see the WFD thread devolve into a high school like popularity contest.

        1. re: Mr Taster

          <When you have quantity overruling quality, you get Yelp-- i.e. loads of superficial input with little depth.>

          Very well stated. ~~ A perfect description of much of the content on WFD.

          1. re: Uncle Bob

            Exactly. Perfectly put. Thank you for showing me I wasn't the only one who felt this way.

            1. re: Dirtywextraolives

              I have neither read nor participated in the "what's for dinner" thread, and based on what's been said here I probably never will. I suppose not all threads can be winners, but these jibbity-jabber threads contribute eyeballs and ad revenue that keep Chowhound going, so I'm not entirely upset to know it's here.

              Mr Taster

              1. re: Mr Taster

                Actually, the characterization of WFD as "lowest common denominator jibbity jabber" shows that you know nothing about the threads and how interesting and informative they can be.

                1. re: roxlet

                  absolutely. i've found that thread very inspiring, with input from a lot of very knowledgeable, passionate and creative people. why do people have to denigrate something they know nothing about? it's definitely a little more of a casual place, but if that's not your style, please don't ruin it for the rest of us.

                2. re: Mr Taster

                  The way WFD is being described here, it makes it sound like it's a bunch of high school girls jibber jabbering and gossiping. It's not whatsoever and I agree w/ roxlet that they are very interesting and informative. I know I personally have learned a lot of good information, and gotten great ideas for future meals.

                  Yes, sometimes it drifts away into personal chit chat, I personally am guilty of going there. I have been trying to refrain from that in an attempt to make everyone happy, and because I realize it really is off topic. But, some backstory to "what's for dinner" is fine, and appreciated. I like getting to know everyone in the limited sense that we can in that thread, and I don't think everyone should censor themselves so much just because others can't check in on the thread all the time.

                  But, the craziness that has ensued ever since ONE person complained about it saddens me. I hate it when people are unhappy, from all sides.

                  I just wish everyone could get along without making rude and insulting comments. Not every thread is for everybody, so I don't get why everyone thinks it has to be that way.

                  1. re: juliejulez

                    <<But, the craziness that has ensued ever since ONE person complained about it saddens me. >>

                    So you're going to blame me for the "craziness"(?) just because I made the simple, (but apparently self-serving!) request for those of us on the WFD thread to cut back on the irrelevant commentary?? I even asked to just hold off on it until the thread turns over, so a. It would last a day or two longer and b. it wouldn't be so frustrating using that thread??

                    First of all, I am most certainly not the only person who has complained about the length and chattiness of the thread. That has been going on for years. I happen to just be the latest. (The responses you've seen on this thread indicate some other long time Chowhounds are a bit fed up with it also....). And I was decent enough to take it to the thread and explain my position, not to the mods without anyone knowing. But I was piled on like a rabbit.

                    And I take issue with those of you lamenting that it will be boring and non informative, as if the only words you will be allowed to type are the descriptors of your food. I have never stated that "backstory" wouldn't fit in; the whole point is to cut down on the posts and comments that do not relate to what you're making for dinner. But I guess it makes for better hype against the idea when you throw that message around..... If the mods hadn't taken the conversation down, I could show you my posts that said exactly that.

                    And when there are multiple posts about one's pet, for instance, Mr. Taster's description is apt - it then become jibber jabber, unproductive to the thread, and quantity over quality.

                    And for what it's worth, I don't think the recommend button really does anything anyway. So perhaps it's akin to a like on Facebook, but it doesn't illustrate WHO recommends it, and WHY, so I think it's kind of pointless. EDIT : okay it will show you who recommends, just not why. Still rather superfluous, but better, I guess.

                    1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                      I just want to say that I don't think that Julie is in any way blaming you. Reading her post in the whole, she made that statement in a blanketed, all inclusive fashion, IMHO. If i am wrong, please correct me jj.

                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                        I was not blaming you at all, sort of the opposite really. I'm not "blaming" anybody in particular, but rather just stating that all this hoopla that came up because you expressed your opinion about what was going on in the WFD thread is sorta silly. As I've posted many times, I hate to see people upset, and it bothered me that you were upset actually, just like it bothers me that other people got upset by your opinions. All of this stuff actually stresses me out, as silly as that is. All the infighting makes me not want to participate as much... I've posted on other message boards in the past and that behavior is what caused me to stop posting on those boards.

                        I actually understood the point you were trying to make from the beginning, that's why I personally have been trying to reel in my superfluous comments and posts about non-food stuff (like my dog).

                        I'm glad for the recommend button because I can click it to show I liked what the post said, but don't need to post "that looks great!".

                    2. re: Mr Taster

                      Wow. Way to completely diss an entire thread and the people who post on it. I've found out lots of good information on the WFD thread and had good interactions with people there. Insulting those who *do* participate on the thread as jibber-jabbering posters doesn't do anyone any good. Perhaps before you bad mouth something, read it.

                      1. re: Mr Taster

                        By no means am I a regular WFD contributor but I do pop in from time to time and, I must say I've had no issue or concern w this thread...or any thread on Chowhound for that matter.

                        In my experience, the WFD is no different than the Home Cooking Board, the Cookware and the Ontario Board (where I tend to spend the most time) They are places where you can give and take as much or as little as you desire.

                        I wish there were more experiences like that in life!!

                        IMHO, to create a community, there has to be some degree of humanity and discussion vs pure reporting. Even here on Site Talk I see an active discussion about a Community member whose health has suffered. I've always assumed folks contribute where and when they are interested.

                        1. re: Mr Taster

                          Now that we can "recommend" posts, can we also "disreccomend" or "unrecommend" options for ones like this? Please?

                          1. re: Jay F

                            Jay, do you realize that I did not make up this policy?

                            Chowhound was created on a principal of "less chat, more tips" and it's a big reason why the site became as good as it did.

                            Chowhound founder Jim Leff:
                            "The "All chime in with your two cents!" Romper Room instinct is a strong one. It's what most people do in most online forums, and it's one of the dilutive tendencies we need to resist here.."


                            Now, the current administrators have taken a different tack. They need subscribers and posts to prove to advertisers that they can deliver eyeballs and earn ad revenue to keep the site profitable, so the jibbity jabber serves a practical economic purpose.

                            In other words, "What's For Dinner" (and other similar behemoth yakkity gabfest threads) allow sharply focused, actually useful threads like this one to exist:


                            It's kind of like having an annoying neighbor who's a police office. You tolerate his quirks because he helps to ensure the integrity of the neighborhood.

                            Mr Taster

                            1. re: Mr Taster

                              If you don't like WFD, don't read it. I generally haven't, mostly because I didn't feel like I had that much to contribute. I don't cook as frequently as some, and also, I tend to obsess about something for a few weeks, i.e., cook it over and over. Again I felt as if I didn't have much to contribute. So I didn't read the thread.

                              But now that I know, thanks to you, that there's a bit more jibber-jabber, I've started reading it. And it seems like a perfectly lovely, utterly valuable thread.

                              I'd much rather read it than a list (probably not the only list) of "Best ______ in _____." (In fact, I can testify just this week to having read not just two "Best in" threads in the same city, but two "Best in" threads for the same neighborhood. Two of them! In the same week! Oh, dear.)

                              Mr. Taster, thank you for turning me on to a thread I like.

                              1. re: Jay F

                                And thanks to you for subsidizing the site for me!

                                Mr Taster

                                1. re: Jay F

                                  I so agree Jay F, and I am happy that Mr. Taster is subsidizing the site as well!

                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                        Maybe that thread is just not the right fit for you, personally, then? With so many from which to choose -- particularly on the HC board, why bother with one that only seems to upset you?

                    3. Very soon we're going to be introducing a "Recommend" button for Chowhound, which you'll be able to use to recommend helpful, interesting or useful posts from other users. More on this in the next week or so....thanks for your patience!

                      Dave MP

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Dave MP

                        can we have a 'not recommend' button, too?

                      2. Understand completely. Not sure any sort of button will solve the problem however.

                        20 Replies
                        1. re: Uncle Bob

                          Agreed; I like the WFD thread the way it's just like watching television, if you don't want to watch a show, turn the channel. Those who don't want to read a thread in it's entirety, don't...just post your comment and move on.

                          Now, its about nitpicking...

                          1. re: Cherylptw

                            I haven't been on WFD very long, so I haven't seen it evolve and I agree. I like it just the way it is. But i am adapting to what the thread was when I joined. That being said, I would be able to adapt to a like button but wish I didn't have to. But it seems like I am the minority. That's fine if that is what the majority wants. I just want to hang out and hear what's for dinner and the back story. And when someone responds with a mmm, love the _____ that you're making it is more personal than a like button.

                            1. re: suzigirl

                              I don't know that I'd change my postings even with a like button. Part of the reason WFD is longer is because there are more people on the thread than in the beginning; more people equals more posts.

                              It's true that some postings are elaborate but it's what makes the thread will be boring if we could only post something like: chicken, rice, broccoli and that's it. What's the point? I'm going to drop it now cause the whole thing just irritates the H double hockey sticks out of me!

                              1. re: Cherylptw

                                <It's true that some postings are elaborate but it's what makes the thread will be boring if we could only post something like: chicken, rice, broccoli and that's it. What's the point? I'm going to drop it now cause the whole thing just irritates the H double hockey sticks out of me!>

                                You make me smile. I love the thread, too, and always have.

                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                  Lol! (oops, don't know if this comment is out of place here or not?) It's all so confusing now....

                                2. re: Cherylptw

                                  "it will be boring if we could only post something like: chicken, rice, broccoli and that's it."

                                  Agreed, Cheryl. Sometimes a bit of a back story as to how someone found an interesting ingredient they plan to use adds to my interest in reading a post. I used to post on an AOL Food board a gazillion years ago, and the rules of that board were NO chit-chat. Recipe only. I got bored with it very quickly and found others where people actually talked to each other and asked questions about what the others were making.

                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                    Chit chat is fine as long as it's anchored to something that adds to the discourse and doesn't distract from it.

                                    For example:

                                    Alone, this is not good:
                                    "OMG! I'm so glad the candied turkey giblets and pig ear tartine worked out for your brother's hipster indoctrination party!!!!"

                                    But if you add this to the end, it becomes fine because it adds to the discourse:
                                    "At his hipster confirmation (where they coronate him with a tiny fedora hat), you should try the goat's bladder salami and pig trotter fricasee."

                                    Mr Taster

                                    1. re: Mr Taster

                                      so you're proposing a specific protocol on how to post?

                                      sheesh. sounds like a fun place.

                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                        Anytime I've come with in a country mile of doing that (proposing a specific protocol on how to post), POOF! gone. Makes one wonder...

                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                          My feeling is people can post what they want. If someone is bothered/offended, let the moderators decide. But, we're all adults and don't need to be preached to on what is proper and not. I may not agree w/ the direction of a conversation but it's not my job to tell participants to stop and I see that happen often. And, I don't step in to tell them to stop telling people to stop. I let the moderators decide. There are people who would probably like to ban others just for misspellings.

                                          1. re: chowser

                                            I couldn't have said it better myself Chowser

                                      2. re: LindaWhit

                                        ^^^^^ This is exactly what I have been trying to say, and Mr. Taster illustrates it perfectly. When you have five or more posts agreeing about how darling someone's pet is, it does not contribute to the conversation at all.

                                        1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                          Unless it's a thread about how we feed our pets....which is now permitted discussion on NAF. :)

                                          1. re: HillJ

                                            Okayyyyyy....... That's fine, I was referring to the whats for dinner thread, which I believe is still dedicated to what we're feeding humans.......

                                            1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                              I know, I know. Just felt the need to bust ya chops.

                                        2. re: LindaWhit

                                          I can relate...what piques my interest now since this whole debacle started is reading that others dropped off the WFD thread because of chattiness...which is ironic because some who used to be on the site was just as, if not more chatty...hmm...perhaps we should come up with codes?

                                          Lord, I hope nothing happens tragically in anyone's personal life and it is mistakenly posted on WFD; they might shut us down for displaying words of sympathy...after all, it's not food related....

                                          1. re: Cherylptw

                                            I think that the people who left decided to leave not because of chattiness -- theirs or anyone else's -- but because there was an increasing tendency by some to use WFD almost as a food blog with posters downloading half a dozen photos or more per meal detailing every aspect of creation, from the mise en place to the end result. This often came with instructions as well, and for many people, it just seemed out of place on a thread such as WFD.

                                        3. re: Cherylptw

                                          agree 100% cherylptw. a lot of the other threads on CH seem to be of the ilk you describe - drier, more information-driven, no fluff (one might say personality) - but we're talking about making dinner for ourselves and our loved ones on WFD. what better place to be a bit chatty, to learn the backstory? the backstory so very often leads to new food knowledge.

                                          and yes, sometimes we use the "oh yums" (i'm guilty) too often, and i think the recommend button would help some with that (especially since i can see now it has already been implemented), but not always. and yes, sometimes someone talks about a pet (horrors!) and people respond, like humans do, and then we reel it back in, or someone says, hey, a bit too off topic, let's bring it back to food, and we do.

                                          but sometimes you just want to tell someone "that thing you're going to make for your husband or wife or kid, or that picture of the delicious thing you made for yourself, sounds/looks wonderful."

                                          if that irritates people, then yes, no need to drop by.

                                    2. This would be really useful in many situations. One I see is when someone asks, "is xxx, yy, or zzzzz better?" A count w/ people liking each suggestion is more helpful than a lot of people chiming in and making the thread too long. Or, is a certain restaurant/recipe worth trying out? It could be a simple thumbs up or down which is better than verbiage (a number of likes shows that it isn't a unique experience).

                                      1. DaveMP recently posted this comment on another thread:

                                        Very soon we're going to be introducing a "Recommend" button for Chowhound, which you'll be able to use to recommend helpful, interesting or useful posts from other users. More on this in the next week or so....thanks for your patience!

                                        While this practice might also turn into a popularity contest for those hyper focused on such unavoidable aspects of community speak, a Recommend button might just address the request for a Like button.

                                        The buttons don't do a thing for me and my experience but giving the people what they want does.

                                        10 Replies
                                        1. re: HillJ

                                          I'm replying here because I can't above.

                                          But I see the recommend button is now here. The only problem is, the popup screen that announces how to use the button, will not close out. I click on the X button but nothing happens. It covers the top 1/3 of every thread I click on. I've tried it in both Chrome and Internet Explorer.

                                          1. re: juliejulez

                                            Same here. That blows reading new threads until they fix that.

                                            1. re: suzigirl

                                              suzigirl, I just changed your 0 to a 1 under recommend.

                                              1. re: juliejulez

                                                Report the issue under a new site topic heading so the the team can address it.

                                                  1. re: juliejulez

                                                    I just hit the red RECOMMEND under your comment jj to illustrate that the number changed from 0 to 1.

                                                    1. re: HillJ

                                                      OK? That wasn't really what I was talking about. There was a whole popup window that came up announcing the new button and it wouldn't go away. But it's fixed now.

                                                      1. re: juliejulez

                                                        funny, I realized later that was what you meant. I experienced the pop up too but didn't put two & two together...looks likes yes, Engr. nabbed that one.