Edits on Super User are very important, it gives sense to many questions and answers here and I think it deserves a good stimulus (such as "Editor" and "Copy Editor" badges), but in my humble opinion it also deserves a counterpart. I mean, if you made a bad edit, you should be "penalized" and receive feedback from moderators and the community to help you improve your edits.

Most edits are good, most of them are useless and some just scratch question/answer sense. My suggestion is a system that, similar to how questions/answers can receive up or down votes, lets users vote on edits.

I'm not speaking about giving reputation to edits, but there could be, for example, another Gold/Silver/Bronze badge for +500/+200/+15 "upvotes" on edits. Each edit "upvote" would sum up to have users reach the badge – and each edit "downvote" would decrease this sum.

This is just an idea that I would like to discuss and to make people think about, feel free to edit/improve anything here.

PS: I already made a lot of "bad" edits but nowadays I have acquired experience to improve my edits just like I got experience in writing better answers and questions than maybe one year ago – this all was stimulated by the reputation system. What I'm thinking here is to provide to new users a way to encourage good edits and, in consequence, better answers and questions on Super User.

  • +1 for Sathya edit! :D – Diogo Jun 29 '12 at 17:45
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    The thing is, users should actually get a fair amount of feedback on their edits when they're below 2k, so after they've reached that point, they're more or less trusted to do what they want. I rather consider this as a problem of lacking consistency in suggested edit reviews. – slhck Jun 29 '12 at 18:31
  • But there is some reason why some "system" as I described was not implemented yet? I mean, was such thing already discussed before? – Diogo Jun 29 '12 at 18:34
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    Do you have an idea how an edit could be up-or downvoted? Like, in the "revisions" page? I'm sure this has been asked on Meta Stack Overflow before — which does not mean I think this is a bad idea — but it would be good to see what they've been discussing. – slhck Jun 29 '12 at 18:37
  • @slhck Let me reward a good edit on my question/answer (I remembered seeing that, but it took a bit of time to find!) – Bob Jun 29 '12 at 18:38
  • If you see the Linked section on the right (not Related), there's been a whole host of requests along this vein. – Bob Jun 29 '12 at 18:39
  • Here are some similar questions: Rep for heroic edits, A nomination for the Medal of (editing) Honor, but they don't really cover up/downvotes for edits. – slhck Jun 29 '12 at 18:39

First of all: I generally like the idea of being able to give some kind of feedback to edits, even if the editors themselves already have enough reputation to edit without needing peer review. Feedback is always good since it helps you along your path.

And as you said, you acknowledged that you've made some rather weak edits yourself, but if you learned from that and could improve, that's probably the best outcome.

That being said, I see one flaw with the proposed system: If voting on edits doesn't involve reputation, then a downvote on an edit doesn't really matter to the editor. They'll just continue – because maybe they wouldn't even notice one of their edits was downvoted.

Similarly, if upvoting an edit does not give reputation, then I doubt a lot of people would edit just for the sake of getting one badge. At least I don't think users care that much about badges (although I could be wrong there).

Regardless, I don't see the big problem in encouraging good edits, actually. What we should rather think about is being more active in discouraging bad edits. Although we do trust users who have reached 2k to edit as much as they want, there are obviously some users who have never edited before or generally have no idea what they're doing.

So, I edit rather often, and I haven't had any complaints, but I haven't really had a lot of good feedback either. So I would really encourage all users with editing privileges to watch out for bad edits and in case they spot one, roll it back. Not only that, but leave the editor a notice with @username, and then improve the post yourself, if needed.

But.. what is a bad edit in a system where there's no peer review anymore (i.e. for users >2k)?

  • One that's changing the original intent of the question (unless it salvages the question and stops it from becoming closed)
  • One that's simply incorrect, like adding useless tags, introducing even more spelling errors, et cetera.

Of course, everyone's standards are different. But there clearly are situations when some users should probably have their editing privileges removed, at least temporarily. Just like the suspension users under 2k reputation get when too many of their edits are rejected.*

To summarize—and I know I'm rambling a bit—it would be great if we could become a little more consistent with our editing standards, clearly identify bad edits, and bring them to community and moderator attention. Mind you, I'm strictly talking about >2k users here.

* … which doesn't stop them from making crappy edits in the first place, since they're never notified about rejections.

  • Do edits that aren't subject to peer-review still get the +2 rep that a peer-reviewed edit does? Or at that point, are edits just altruistic? – killermist Jul 7 '12 at 13:57
  • Once there's no peer review anymore, you won't get the +2 bonus. The same holds for tag wiki edits, where peer review is needed for users below 20k. – slhck Jul 7 '12 at 15:59

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