About Voting

What is Voting?

Voting on claims allows users to express how much of an impact they believe a claim has on the claim above it. In the top-left corner of any claim is the Impact Meter: the more of the meter is colored in, the more impact users believe the claim has on the claim above it.

Note: You should vote not only on how true or persuasive you find a claim, but also how relevant it is to the claim directly above it. See the Understanding Impact section for more information.

Below the Impact Meter, the gray voting gauge indicates how many participants have voted on the claim. The voting gauge appears fully filled once 10 participants have voted.

Understanding Impact

Kialo’s voting system is designed to measure how much impact users in a discussion think each claim has on the next claim up. A claim’s impact is the result of its veracity and relevance.

A claim’s veracity is measured by how persuasive or truthful you find a claim. The more you find a claim convincing, the more veracity, and therefore impact, it has. Remain impartial when assessing the veracity of a claim – even if you don’t agree with the “side” a claim is arguing for, you should try your best to put aside any personal biases when voting.

Not only must a claim be persuasive to be impactful, but it must also be relevant in relation to the claim above it. A common mistake made by newer users on Kialo is submitting claims which can be persuasive or truthful in isolation, however have little relevance to the claim directly above, and consequentially, little impact.

In summary: When voting on a claim’s impact, take into consideration its veracity and relevance to the claim directly above it. (Impact = Veracity + Relevance).

You can also vote on the veracity of the thesis (or theses) in a discussion. As a thesis is located above all claims, its relevance should be clear, so users vote on its veracity in regards to the discussion question. (If the relevance of a thesis is unclear, it should be amended as a priority, as an unclear thesis can cause an entire discussion to be unclear.)

For additional information on what impact meters can show you, see Understanding Perspectives.

How to Vote

To vote on a claim:

  1. Click the Impact Meter (the four bars) in the top-left corner of a claim to open the voting interface.
  2. Pick the appropriate impact rating, from 0 (weakest) to 4 (strongest).

Note: Voting is disabled by default in new discussions, and must be enabled for participants to vote on claims.

Kialo also has a Guided Voting system, which systematically takes you through claims you haven’t yet voted on.

Enabling/Disabling Voting in a Discussion

Admins in a discussion can control whether participants are able to vote on claims at any given time.

To enable or disable voting:

  1. Open the Discussion Menu.
  2. Select Discussion Settings.
  3. Check Allow voting to enable voting, or uncheck it to disable voting.
  4. Click Save.

Disabling voting does not erase votes made while it was enabled, and votes already cast reappear when voting is re-enabled.

Adjusting User Vote Visibility

Admins in a discussion can specify which users are able to see other users’ votes on claims. If vote visibility is hidden for a user, the Impact Meters (see the What is Voting? section) show them only their own votes.

Hiding user vote visibility is useful if you wish to collect blind impact votes, avoiding the bias that might exist if individuals can see how other users have voted on a claim (meaning users can’t vote “with the crowd”, or express stronger feelings on a claim to “balance out” others’ votes they disagree with).

You can adjust user votes to be visible to all participants (default), only discussion Admins, or only the users themselves. If hiding user votes, this setting can be reverted at a later time to reveal to participants how others have voted.

To adjust user vote visibility:

  1. Open the Discussion Menu.
  2. Select Discussion Settings.
  3. Under ‘Who can see users’ votes on claims?’, pick the appropriate option.
  4. Once finished, click Save.
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