Reddit is the self-proclaimed “front page of the internet.” A glorified link aggregator, the ever-popular site is a unique combination of discussion board, forum, news site, and humor column. The beauty, and sometimes infuriating component, of the site is that it puts power into the hands of the Reddit community. The opinionated and often fickle users of the site can “upvote” or “downvote” links and posts based on if they feel they’re relevant. These voting scores are then used to give readers the best collection of content for their browsing experience, and keep the terrible stuff buried far, far beneath the surface.
For the most part, it works great. There are of course the power users who get an inflated sense of self-importance and begin voting based on personal whims and whether or not they like a particular poster, but the majority of the community is great. The voting system is so well-done, in fact, it should be utilized elsewhere, in ways that would make all of our lives just a little bit better. Here are five other situations in which the upvote/downvote system should be implemented.
Just last week, I went to the Dallas stop of the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival, Funny or Die’s pseudo-festival of comedy featuring Dave Chappelle and Flight of the Conchords. After a few great acts, the sum total of the booze consumed by the girl behind me transformed her into a non-stop whirling dervish of high-pitched “woooo!!” shouts and unquestionably loud storytelling. It was, no matter how hard you tried, impossible to hear what was going on onstage, and if you were within a 100-yard radius of the chick, your experience was ruined. Now, imagine getting to downvote the shit out of that girl as a poor concert attendee, forcing her to retreat further to the back of the venue with each negative vote, until eventually the consensus reaches critical mass and a hidden trapdoor in the grass opens up, dropping her straight to hell for not keeping her mouth shut.
You’ve been in the situation before: you’ve got that guy in the group that likes to tell stories. Sometimes, it makes for great entertainment, but at other points he won’t stop talking and nobody is loud enough to talk over him and shut him the hell up. But, imagine voting on his stories while they happen, a Gong Show-style environment, and if he gets to that threshold of negative votes, somebody pops him right in the mouth. On the other hand, if he keeps getting upvoted, the waitress inexplicably brings more and more booze.
Sometimes, you’ve had enough, but you just don’t know it. Another seven shots sounds like a perfectly fine idea, until you’re throwing up on the curb 30 minutes later and regretting ever taking your first sip of alcohol. But imagine letting the entire population of the club vote on whether or not you should be indulging in any more beverages. The votes are tied to your tab and before the bartender makes your drink, he brings up your particular bill. If you’ve been downvoted into oblivion, the tab pours nothing but water, but if you’ve gotten upvotes like a boss, then any delicious nectar you choose comes pouring out. Granted, this one could be a little dangerous, especially if douchebag predators keep upvoting girls to get them drunker, which brings us to …
A carefully curated group of personality prognosticators (comprised of both men and women) sits at the door, furiously casting votes on every person that comes in. No bros, no sorostitutes, just an eclectic mix of cool folks looking for a good time. And, just for fun, every once in a while they’ll let in a douchebag, just to give the masses a little treat.
Nobody has to be an asshole and boo loudly, but nobody has to suffer through another godawful rendition of “I Will Always Love You.” If you suck, you will be told electronically after enough hell no votes, and you can quietly back to your seat and the land of vocal incapability.