Do we need a negative voting option?

Hello everyone!

Love your work and the discussions that are taking place here.

25 years ago, here in Greece, we had a reality show called “the Wall”, where a literal wall was separating a luxurious house from a farm and the players were competing in various ways to determine which team (blue or red) will stay in the villa for one week. We, the audience were voting which player of the farm residents we prefer to stay in the game. The one with fewer votes was disqualified.

I remember this particular player, who was always the reason his team was losing and was never doing actual farm work to help them while staying at the “poor” side of the wall. He was always lazy and causing problems. Imagine a toxic guy, intentionally looking like Jesus, walking around barefoot, topless, using rhymes from the Bible and talking about God every chance he got. Audience hated him. BUT. When the voting day was taking place… let’s just say that a very particular Greek age group (>75) was backing him with their SMSs. So, every week, although he was the worst of his team, he kept staying in the game.

After a couple of months, one day, the game host announces a change in the voting process. From now on, you vote for the player you want to LEAVE, instead for the one you want to stay. It’s not a positive vote any more, but a negative one. Needless to say that our buddy Jesus was by far the first to leave with a record breaking vote number.

Although even as a small child I had foreseen this outcome, it still blew my mind how this rule change, which seemed insignificant at first, played such a big role. And at the end, which of the two systems is the fairest? In both cases people are voting for what they want to happen in the game, so how is it possible to have the opposite outcome?

Anyway, my suggestion, after carrying this memory for 25 years in my head, would be that the way I see it, the ada holder should have the ability to chose whether his vote (for dReps for eg) is a positive or a negative one and can allocate his voting power however he want.

Let’s say (as a simplified example), I have voting power of 100 ADA. I give 50 to Bob, 20 to Anna and -30 to John, who I hate and strongly believe he is harming the network.

Does it make sense to anyone else? Is it something you have discussed before?

Thanks for reading and excuse me for my English (I refuse to use Chat GPT for content corrections for the time being)

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Cardano’s Project Catalyst works that way (at least recently). You can see here on the Voting Results pages that each ada in the voting wallet can be allocated to a YES or a NO vote for any proposal, and the difference between YES and NO totals is used to determine project winners in each category:

Hello! Thank you for the response. I don’t mean exactly that. Imagine having the sum of your voting power as “points” and you can allocate your points accordingly, expressing this way “how much” you like or dislike a candidate for a position.

Although I haven’t voted on Catalyst (I only have a funded project there), what you just said is exactly how they say it works. Read down to point #17 here:

No, this is not how it works at the moment (and I’m not sure if it is a good idea).

Up to now, you vote with your whole voting power on all proposals that you decide to vote on. What @Varavas proposes it that you have to distribute your voting power on Yes and No votes. If you have 1000 ADA and decide to vote with 800 ADA on No for Daedalus Turbo, you only have 200 ADA left to vote Yes on the Rare Bloom cash grab, while now you can vote 1000 ADA No on Turbo as well as 1000 ADA Yes on Bloom.

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Thanks for the correction @HeptaSean - to both my posting & my understanding. I had always imagined the Catalyst vote to be unusually sincere because any expressed opinion or intention to deprecate a proposal would have the same significance as an expression of support.

I do agree @Varavas this “negative voting” would be desirable in many circumstances, feel also that it would be an improvement for Catalyst, and personally believe it would be more like consensus in “real life” in which people’s total energy to support or fight any number of things is generally a constant.

I was about to give the same turbo example. And don’t forget that in catalyst, at least we have some sort of mechanism with multiple people giving a first evaluation of the project, so in theory we have some protection. That’s not the case with dReps, cause anyone can register without a 5 star system. Either way, many people will be willing to delegate to multiple dReps, just like they do with multiple pools. So instead of having them create new wallets/accounts and do it manually, we implement that feature directly, along with the negative voting option.
I find it to be a more accurate system to express your thoughts and feelings for a series of decision making processes and in our case for the dReps.