Is this necessary: Voting Floor?

Given that polls in Discourse provide an option to limit what groups can vote in the poll, do we need a subcategory for the Voting Floor within the Assembly? Over the course of this forum move, we’ve been actively working on category consolidation - and for good reason. There’s no need for a separate “voting floor” given the tools of Discourse


I don’t think it’s really necessary, but the Chair of the Assembly needs to commit to creating a coherent tag structure. Right now, we have a mix of tag use and title editing.

Really, separate voting threads aren’t needed at all. Polls are attached to posts, not threads. So the Chair can open a poll in the debate thread themselves. But I don’t know if the community would prefer to go that far in consolidation.

This is, to an extent, what we’ve done in the Great Council. I did do it through a separate Voting Booth, for organisation purposes, but essentially it’s a single topic with individual posts rather than the old approach of individual topics for each vote.

We actually do this in the RP community, and it works fine. In fairness, though, I could imagine it getting slightly confusing if there is significant debate after a vote is opened. (That could also be alleviated by mentioning the legislator group in the post with the poll, for instance, or users can just bookmark it themselves.)

I personally believe that a ‘voting floor’ is useful in distinguishing specific threads between debate and voting, and also for administration and organisational purposes. However, it is up to the community to decide which they prefer when it comes to deciding how they want to vote. I do, however agree that we do within the assembly need to make better use of tags as compared to directly editing thread titles.

What about a single topic for voting?

That may work; however, I personally believe that it is more intuitive to have separate threads for individual votes. As this allows for easier navigation when looking back at current or previous votes. As compared to having one long thread with every single vote present on it. However, this is just a personal preference.


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I’m in favour of keeping it as it is - votes are kept in separate threads because those are far easier to search than a single thread, especially long term and especially in that period every now and again when a lot of conversation is happening and we have multiple overlapping votes going on. Any replies in the vote topic making some kind of point of order would also be hard to keep track of. It might not make sense for the Great Council’s comparatively low quantity of votes happening in a short period of time, but it certainly does for the Assembly.

A similar reasoning applies for why we wouldn’t want votes to be posted in the discussion thread - there can be multiple discussion threads for a single proposal, and sometimes a single thread can include multiple votes (for example where a vote is cancelled and then put back to vote again), and I’d argue that in general this is all easier to keep track of if you can see that there’s two vote threads rather than just polls thrown into a thread. This also allows legislators to see how many votes there are at a glance, although I suppose you could also do that with the tags system. Keeping the votes separate also allows people to set up their own polls inside debate threads for things that aren’t votes without creating confusion.

I think though that the biggest reason for keeping it the same is that it’s a system that has worked perfectly fine for many years and which doesn’t really have any major issues. It’s pretty easy for us to set up a vote, it’s familiar to existing and returning legislators, it’s fairly intuitive to new members, it’s consistent with how it’s worked for as far back as you might need to search and any change away from it would require the benefits to be large enough to overcome all of the above.

I mean, it’s the only system that was technically feasible with our previous forum softwares, so that’s not exactly a selling point.

My point there was more on how, since it stays consistent even throughout forum changes, it’s just easier to search votes if you don’t have to keep track of when we switched systems on top of when we switched forums. I agree it’s not a particularly important benefit, but it is another benefit to add to the pile.

I’ve yet to see any real reasons why doing it any different way would be better - just because we’ve had to always do it this way doesn’t mean the new options are better.

I disagree. The way I see it it would be much simpler to have a single voting booth where you could find any vote with a Control+F.

I don’t see why you couldn’t do the same in the Voting Floor subforum with the search feature, except it gives you a neat list of threads which are each one vote rather than highlighting every single mention of a term in a thread. Seems to me that it would be more of a downgrade than anything.

Because I’m a minimalist, so I like using as little space as possible.

A “vote” tag would do the same thing (i.e. giving you a list of threads that contain votes).

I think it would be helpful to set notification settings for votes, which is possible with a sub-category or with a voting thread but not with tags.

Such as having a specific notification setting that alerts users within a specific group (Legislators in this case) that a new thread has been created within the Voting Floor sub-forum. Giving Legislators a more connected experience when it comes to voting, i.e less forgetfulness?

I’m not sure what you’re suggesting. I’m referring to Discourse’s built-in functionality to set personal notification settings for a category or topic.

But the current system that we have within the Assembly at the moment works just as well. Why change it? And yes, I know that there is the argument that we currently do things within the Assembly for a specific reason (The old forum software) but it works out just fine the way it is right now. All putting votes within one huge thread would do is make it more difficult for people to find specific votes that they are looking for. When having each vote have a dedicated thread would make it easier as each piece of relevant data with regards to a specific vote are all kept together under one designated thread.

In my view, putting every vote under one thread would be more of an inconvenience as compared to a benefit.

Sorry, I thought that was what you were suggesting. I must have misunderstood.

You can follow tags the same as topics. Click the bell to set notification settings.