For the EarthQ
project, I'm focused on how random viewers of a high-quality answer on a potentially controversial topic will know that they can trust the answer. My question Should Quora be used to gather and distill expert answers on polarizing topics?
didn't go anywhere--a couple of comments, but no answers (yet).
Take a look at the voting for Which Facebook employees will resign in protest of Facebook's approach to privacy?
, which was cited in Jokes: What are the most upvoted joke answers on Quora?
It is a good example of an answer, in this case a joke, with a ton of endorsements, aka upvotes.
I've been Thinking About Voting On Quora
. Sure, there are a many reasons people vote an answer up--no doubt some voting rationales are based on Different Question Types On Q&A Sites Like Quora
In thinking about factual questions related to controversial topics, I think it is really important for random viewers of answers (and their votes) to be able to easily get a sense of the credentials of voters, if that is important to them.
Quora already has a considerable amount of data that could be offered up to those who care to evaluate the credentials of people who upvote an answer--the topic bios of the voters.
Just as I suggested it might be nice for those answering a question to be able to select their most appropriate topic bio (http://www.quora.com/How-does-Qu...
), it might be a great feature to allow those voting on an answer to select (and edit) their topic bio. Sure, not everyone would want to do this, but those who are particularly interested in being viewed as credible might be very willing to take a few extra seconds to do this.
Plus, there's another potential feature that could be leveraged for describing the credibility of voters--endorsements (see What does an "endorsement" do on Quora?
). I see a lot of value in endorsements for EarthQ
. An expert who is active on several different topics would have all the more authority with a number of endorsements--especially from other experts who come from different walks of life, such as industry or government.
I'm no user-interface designer, so take this sketch with a lump of salt. I'm thinking of a right column feature that would only appear if someone actively engaged with the listing of votes underneath the name and bio of the person who answered the question. They would then see a listing of topic bios from those people who upvoted the answer. Plus, we'd be able to see how many endorsements, if any, the voters had on that topic. Maybe those with endorsements would lead the list...