I propose a system of voting for or against feature requests separate from traditional up/down voting in order to avoid alienating people with well thought out yet unpopular suggestions
Often I have seen users who are new to meta make a well written, carefully considered proposal that is none the less deeply unpopular; a stream of downvotes follows. This usually ends in the author leaving with a bad taste in their mouth, the most recent example of which is this, in which the author said "This certainly doesn't make me want to use this site in the future or even try to help with the process", never to be seen again. Alienating good users like this doesn't seem like a good way forward.
Worse yet many people (such as myself) never vote against well written proposals because they don't feel it deserves traditional downvotes.
On the other side; the question ban is basically turned off on meta for this reason, but this allows users who lightly troll (I shall not name names I'm sure you have a few users in mind) or fail to do basic research can avoid a question ban because the algorithm can't differentiate between them and people with unpopular ideas.
I therefore propose that a separate vote be kept for and against a feature request as so;
I realise that this would be developer effort for a feature purely on 1/4 of questions on only the meta sites. But this happens most days and I think its worth considering.
- Avoids disincentivising users who make well written but unpopular feature requests
- Allows legitimately bad users to be identified
- Encourages more people to vote on feature requests; I know many people (myself included) never downvote just because we don't like the idea - giving skewed results
- Allows more nuanced voting; I disagree but you've clearly thought this through --> upvote + vote against
This post similarly proposed agree/disagree buttons but still includes a rep penalty