When question or an answer is down voted can we have a confirmation popup asking user if they are certain? The same would apply if it was a star rating system when giving a 1 star out of 5.

The reason being user maybe hasty in down voting or it's easy to click it by mistake on the phone's small screen, when you are really were trying to up vote it.

Bottom line - there too many unnecessary/erroneous down votes.

The up voting on the other hand has a opposite problem and doesn't need confirmation in my opinion as it is should be encouraged. Often times the up votes are severely lacking even though they should exist.

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    Bottom line - there too many unnecessary/erroneous down votes. Citation needed – Turamarth May 28 at 15:18
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    Simply click the button again to undo the vote. “there [are] too many unnecessary/erroneous down votes” — citation needed. (Lovely, how we thought about the same comment; I didn’t see the first comment, because the “show 1 more comment” didn’t show up). – user289905 May 28 at 15:19
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    You can change your vote for five minuets before it is locked. If you miss clicked, then that is loads of time to click again. I would argue that the sympathy upvote is more of an issue than downvotes due to how rep is weighted heavily in favour of the upvote (5 to 1) – Mark Kirby May 28 at 15:20
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    I don't think we need to encourage upvotes. – rene May 28 at 15:25
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    As far as I know, I’ve only cast a few accidental votes, all of which I was able to reverse within a couple of minutes if not seconds. Almost always, “unnecessary downvotes” seem to be a case of people just disagreeing on what’s an acceptable/good post and what’s not. – Laurel May 28 at 15:41
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    @bestinamir Why no confirmation for upvotes in the same manner? – πάντα ῥεῖ May 28 at 15:51
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    @πάνταῥεῖ confirmation of upvotes would upset all those users in voting rings and puppeteers: they would have to modify the scripts they use to upvote random questions in an attempt to hide their fraud in noise. – Martin James May 29 at 3:45
  • @Martin So that would even be the better idea than requiring a confirmation for downvotes ;-) – πάντα ῥεῖ May 29 at 5:47
  • @πάνταῥεῖ it would be interesting if, just for a day, to collect data, SO required a captcha for voting... – Martin James May 29 at 6:51
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    @Martin All in all I am more concerned about inconsiderate and undeserved upvotes, especially for low quality newbie questions. There seem to be a lot just made for misunderstood empathy, seemingly interesting but out of scope questions, etc. These are hindering the processes of closing and deleting off-topic questions unnecessarily. – πάντα ῥεῖ May 29 at 6:57
  • @πάνταῥεῖ I can only agree, but how could we detect them, other than 'manually'? – Martin James May 29 at 7:01
  • I think it can add a vote confirm like a "text box" or something else that don't disturb to much, to prevent misclicking and votes without thinking – okie May 29 at 8:27
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    Since votes are easily cancelled/reversed, I don't see much point. Users who decide to vote will surely click 'OK' on any such box without further consideration. TBH, I am not convinced that voting without thinking is a significant problem anyway. – Martin James May 29 at 11:18

There is already some kind of confirmation feature; when you downvote a post, you'll see a blue banner at the top*:

Please consider adding a comment if you think this post can be improved

I most certainly don't want a confirmation popup like you describe; we shouldn't bother users who help moderating content by having to do more clicks. This one goes away automatically when you navigate to another page.

easy to click it by mistake on the phone's small screen

Happens to me too, but that's what the grace period is for; you have five minutes to correct such a mistake.

This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful (click again to undo)

*: It is not shown if you have more than 2,000 reputation; presumably those users have enough experience to know when a comment is appropriate.

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  • How is that related to confirming to vote and being able to undo the vote? – user289905 May 28 at 15:21
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    @user289905 sorry, forgot a sentence about why I think it's a bad solution to a 'problem' for which there is already an alternative solution. – Glorfindel May 28 at 15:23
  • I think this is the screenshot more relevant to the question: point out the “click again to undo”. The question is unrelated to comments. – user289905 May 28 at 15:24
  • Yeah, that sentence is probably better off in the appendix. – Glorfindel May 28 at 15:28
  • Thank you. May be only display down vote confirmation for users with reputation less than 5000 or so? The moderators don't need it, I agree. – bestinamir May 28 at 17:08

I take slight issue with these two points:

Bottom line - there too many unnecessary/erroneous down votes.


The up voting on the other hand has a opposite problem and doesn't need confirmation in my opinion as it should be encouraged. Often times the up votes are severely lacking even though they should exist.

Up-voting and down-voting both take the same amount of effort. To say that it's easy to accidentally click the down-vote button and forget about it is to concede the argument that it is similarly easy to click the up-vote button and forget about it. Down-voting is even gated behind a low reputation requirement, which implies that less people overall can perform the action. To say that there are too many erroneous down-votes is to also ignore that, as rene points out, there are far more up-votes across Stack Overflow than down-votes. Feel free to manipulate that query, and you'll see that this trend is pretty much the same across other sites in the network.

So... Up-votes do exist, and they're far more prevalent than down-votes. As a result, I don't believe it's necessary to put an intermediary step between a user clicking a button that indicates how useful posts are, and that vote taking effect. Voting, both up and down, is important! Moderating content through votes has always been easy to do, and interrupting that flow with an intermediary step seems unnecessary at best and counter-productive to content moderation at worst.

If I went to the trouble of pressing the down-vote button on a post I felt wasn't useful, then I'd simply press "Yes, I'm sure" on the prompt you suggest. Without your suggestion, if I accidentally clicked the down-vote button, I'd probably notice that the button is now highlighted, and (as Glorfindel points out) I can simply undo my vote. Sure, your suggestion may have saved me the trouble of clicking the button again, but it wouldn't stop me from down-voting a post I feel isn't useful.

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  • Thank you, I didn't even know you can undo down votes by clicking it again. There probably others like me. – bestinamir May 28 at 17:09
  • @bestinamir After 5 minutes, your vote is locked in. If the post is edited, though, you're free to change your vote or undo your vote. Users can downvote a poor post, wait until it's updated, then remove their downvote later and apply an upvote if necessary. It's pretty neat! – Spevacus May 28 at 17:47
  • My thinking was if I accidentally down voted it I can then click up vote to reverse my mistake, but it won't let me. I don't know what's better usability wise.The process you describe sounds a little complicated to me. – bestinamir May 28 at 17:55
  • @bestinamir Well, for your issue, when you click one of the vote options, you can immediately click that same vote button again to undo it. If 5 minutes have passed between your vote and your attempt to undo it, you won't be able to correctly un-vote. Clicking the opposite button won't help you in this case. – Spevacus May 28 at 17:58
  • Thanks now I can undo my mistakes. Originally it wouldn't occur to me to press it second time because it's like down voting it a second time, thus further compounding my problem. Although after I erroneously down voted someone who didn't deserve it I felt bad about down voting as a whole and haven't down voted anyone since I believe. – bestinamir May 28 at 18:16
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    @bestinamir Accidents happen, don't feel bad. Voting isn't personal, it's just about what content is useful/correct. Downvoting is just as important as upvoting, so don't be afraid to downvote posts that need it! – Spevacus May 28 at 18:17

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