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Policy for voting

This may be a bit trivial, but since Parenting is more subjective than most of the Stack Exchange sites, I want to understand how opinion should affect voting.

If an answer advocates a parenting method I disagree with (but is well-written and answers the question being asked), to what extent should I allow my opinion factor into voting on it? Obviously, I have no problem downvoting answers that advocate abusive or other unacceptable practices, no matter how well-written they are. But what about practices that are considered acceptable?

There is a lot of gray area here, but I'll narrow it down to a few situations:

  • The advocated method is very uncommon and has evidence that it doesn't work; most people would agree there is a better method.
  • The advocated method is one of several common but opposing methods with evidence supporting all of them; there isn't general agreement on which is best.
  • The advocated method is very common and has evidence it works; most people would agree that this is the best method.

In any of the above situations, should I downvote if I think another method works better?


2 Answers 2


There's a question over on photo-SE's meta that points out a very interesting facet of voting that I think we should adopt as well. (and it's for very similar reasons, things being more subjective in art questions.) (and as soon as I can find it I'll link to it, a couple tries didn't turn it up.)

Voting isn't a two choice affair, just up or down. It's a THREE choice affair: up, down and do nothing. Basically the idea is to not feel you have to vote for every answer.

To apply it to your question, if an answer seems sound, but doesn't agree with your parenting style, don't vote on it either way. Even better, provide an alternate answer from a different parenting style and let the community decide.

So to specifically answer your titular question: quite a lot.

  • Very well put, sir. Mar 30, 2011 at 22:25

In the first case I think it's obvious that you should vote down. In the other cases I would probably upvote those I agree with, and not vote for the others.

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