Should we add a "Me, too" / "I agree" reaction?

There’s been a couple times recently when I’ve wanted to express, “I agree”, but not wanted to clog the thread by posting a comment with just that text. The most recent example:

Right now the best way to do this is to :+1: appreciate the comment. However, that verb and the feeling do not quite match.

In the past I’ve been hesitant about adding an “I agree” reaction because it might promote groupthink. However, I’m reconsidering that position, because:

  • It’s a common feeling to want to express. Thus, it’s likely that some reaction will become a socially-agreed-upon “agree” button, even if that’s not the official meaning. This dilutes the meaning of that reaction, which I don’t like — “Does that reaction mean the official thing or agreement?”
  • Currently, it’s most likely that this will be :+1: appreciate. This action influences trust levels, post sorting in some places, etc. There’s actually a way to sort topics by number of appreciations, although we’ve hidden it via the site settings or css I think. All things equal, I’d rather tie those less to agreement and more to appreciation.

I’d like to propose:[1] I’m thinking of proposing:

  • Adding an additional retort reaction, :+1: I_agree (or agreed?).
    • I’d be especially open to alternative names/icons that aren’t so absolute
      — like how :skeptical: skeptical isn’t a hard-line “I disagree”.
  • Changing the other icon to :slight_smile: appreciate (other suggestions also welcome here).

edit: This does leave much more overlap between :slightly_smiling_face: appreciate and :thank_you: thank_you
Not sure what, if anything, to do about that.

Not-directly-related thought: how does :purple_heart: thank_you change the meaning?

edit2: Related prior discussions:

  1. On reflection, this is definitely still something that I would like. I’m not sure if it would be good, though. It might be a good thing if the “agree” button — “appreciate” — creates a little hesitation before using it / prompts me to think about whether I also appreciate it. I’m going to sit and think about this some more. ↩︎

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My only idea at the moment is something along the lines of :hushed: I_feel_that

I don’t know if it’s a universal enough phrase to be effective, though…

I really oppose adding clear smiley-face valence to the “appreciate”. I can appreciate a post where someone is describing something tragic, and I’m not smiling about it.

We already had the debate about “agree” as it was my original default suggestion before we settled on “appreciate” (I’m happy with that conclusion still). See Which reaction should be the primary non-Retort one? and "respect" and "agree" vs "like" (and other ideal reaction options) and Should we include a "Disagree" reaction?

We had reasons then to not have an “agree” or “+1”. I have mixed feelings. I would be okay adding it now. I have wanted it sometimes myself. That said, maybe we just add polls when we really want people to agree or disagree, and otherwise if we want more concrete statement than “appreciate” we post. We’re not yet filling the forum with lots of +1 posts.

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I definitely have an immediately negative reaction to the faces. Skeptical works, but adding another, especially in the context of a reaction that we discussed at length and came to, what I still think to be, a decent conclusion about, doesn’t sit right.

That said, I am pro an agree/+1 reaction, as long as it isn’t the primary one. I’m also in favor of something that is slightly less hard-line but nothing comes immediately to mind. Maybe :handshake: accord?

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:100: is used in a widespread way to mean “I agree!” or “I like it!”

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I like this direction. It implies “I totally agree” (I agree 100%), which is more specific and has less overlap with :+1: appreciate.

Another option in this direction that I like is “You took the words out of my mouth”.

"You took the words out of my mouth" emoji options

:no_mouth: took_my_words

:face_with_symbols_over_mouth: took_my_words

:hushed: took_my_words

I kind of like these because they’re varying degrees of normally-negative emoji, and there’s something I find the juxtaposition deeply amusing. “:face_with_symbols_over_mouth: I’m so angry that I agree with you so much!”

:100: my_words_exactly is probably more intuitive, though :P

Are you open to changing the icon at all? Which reaction should be the primary non-Retort one? doesn’t document why we chose the :+1: icon, but I think it was because there was no other “I agree” reaction, so we wanted something in that direction a little bit. But if we add an agreement reaction as we are discussing, then there’s less need for :+1: as the primary reaction, which I’m less than thrilled about given similarity to :frowning_face::blue_book: (particularly, people’s prior understanding of what the symbol means — how many people will read the text before clicking the button?).

In Custom emojis (esp. as retort reactions) - #10 by smichel17, I brainstormed :handshake: and :balance_scale: as alternatives, and elsewhere @wolftune added :star:. Other options include :clap: :raised_hands: :vulcan_salute: :ok_hand: :snowflake: :sparkles:

I’m not completely closed to changing :+1: but I oppose revisiting it. My memory is that we really thought this through pretty well and recognized it as just the best all-around imperfect option. I think it’s a bad use of time to try again.

“Appreciate” literally means to push-up. It’s +1 in the sense not of agreement but of enhancing. “I appreciate this” means “I support this post being here and being noticed, rising up”. If we could find an ideal image that conveyed a good sense of “nice post!” or “thanks for sharing this post”, I’d support it (incidentally, our newest :thank_you: “thank you” is used not for “thank you for a good post” but “thank you for the action or content this post describes”, so it’s appropriate with the strong heart emoji). A “thanks for your post” is what “appreciate” means, and I think :+1: is actually about as good as we’ll find for that.

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:100: I would use it right here to support itself if we had it in our options!

I think I support adding it. What would the name be? How about “YES!”?

I am fine with :100: but don’t really want to change the across the board lowercase nature of our reactions. Some suggestions: “agree”, “agreed”, “with_you”, “aligned”

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I am opposed to these because they don’t express “complete/total/100%”.

Thinking about this more, I realized that all of the times I’ve wished for an “agree” reaction have been when I was planning on (or considering) writing a post, but then some other post expresses my thoughts so closely that there’s no longer anything for me to add, or even clarify. Like queuing up to speak in a meeting, and then the person before you says exactly what you were going to say, and you just have say “skip me, I was going to say exactly what they said.”

This is partly why I like the idea of “:face_with_symbols_over_mouth: took_the_words_out_of_my_mouth”[1] — the positive feeling is also often mixed with dejection: "that took the wind out of my sails " / “I wanted to be the one to say that!”

A simple “agreed” would not express this.

Additionally, from the other direction, it turns out that I’m already using “appreciate” to express lesser agreement, and not missing an extra reaction in these cases. I might not have realized, except that I came here after doing exactly this to @wolftune’s post in How can we make our solution not work for exclusive club goods? - #4 by wolftune

In this case, there’s nothing I disagree with per se. But there are places I’d clarify before saying it totally represents my views / I may as well have written this.

Important detail though: I chose, not to reply and clarify those details (and I don’t plan to); it doesn’t really matter enough to be worth the time. So I can now clarify the feeling that drove me to create this topic: “:+1: appreciate + no reply[2]” can’t mean both “I was going to write this exact same comment” and “I mostly agree, but there are a few exceptions”.


  1. Shorter would be nice, though… ↩︎

  2. If I appreciate a post and also mostly disagree, I’m almost certainly going to reply, if someone hasn’t already expressed my argument against it. ↩︎

  3. re: first footnote — this post, for example ↩︎

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You can feel free to post exactly that, perhaps in the #support:meta category if you want, though the single reply isn’t derailing, so it’s okay enough.

I don’t now ever consciously feel the way you are describing. I can’t imagine dejection from something to which I would say “yes, that’s it, I couldn’t have said it better”. I feel it adds wind to my sails rather than take it.

This actually goes right into FLO stuff! I do relate to what you’re saying in one way: I used to feel that way more often. I had thoughts about the music educational book I would write or the research I wanted to do because I saw it missing. When I later learned that others (perhaps a whole world of others) had already been working on this stuff, it was disheartening in a sense. Damn, I was setting myself up to work on X, but here it is already, what’s the point of me doing anything? Like it can get to questioning life-purpose even.

To me, this is a core motivation behind I could possibly succeed in a zero-sum competition such as getting my music to get attention or I get the job as a professor somewhere etc. But knowing that it’s zero sum, that there are 5-10 equally qualified people for the job and that a good portion end up doing some B.S. thing instead… this is so discouraging.

So, I found myself deciding not to play that game. I worked through that sense of “but I was investing all this thought in a project, and yet here someone already did it…” to turn into my current mindset. I now think that the problem is the lack of ability to cooperate and build together.

I’ve worked over years to notice and then drop that ego-based idea of wanting to have been the one to do something. I hate that feeling. FLO and related has been my framing to fully find the mindset that says, “I want the results, and I’m happy to be (but not tied to being) part of getting them; so my focus is exclusively on figuring out where I can most help”.

If someone else actually solves the snowdrift dilemma as well as we envision, I will now have no disappointment about me (and not being the hero to have solved it. I’m consciously setting up everything in my life to avoid having that sort of conflict of interest.

But I see an outstanding issue of someone else doing something I was planning though: Consider if I post something that expresses what you were going to say. In most cases there may indeed be something else. The something you would change in the post if it were a wiki! So, there’s some place for you editing a post of mine to improve it. That’s the win-win, the collaboration, the pivot away from competiton and toward cooperation. I’d like to see more of that. Imagine you could open a MR to any of my posts!! I would so appreciate the feedback and practice refining my own communication. We could end up with higher-and-higher quality posts…

Anyway, aside from all this, I see value in a :100: reaction that is literally that: I give this post a 100 score. I have no MRs I’d even imagine doing here. I wholeheartedly agree with this. I’m not sure enough to argue strongly for adding it, but I’d be fine with having it. But we can also post any reaction with some text as an actual reply if it’s worth it in any case.

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  • The dejection is totally an ego reaction. Perhaps we shouldn’t include it on those grounds.
  • It’s not the only or primary feeling (at least, that I feel in these situations); it’s mixed in with appreciation/gratitude that I don’t have to do the work of [writing the post].
    • As I mentioned, I find this juxtaposition quite amusing. But I acknowledge :100: is probably the better emoji.
  • Personally I don’t have any problem with feeling ego-based emotions. The important part is how I act on them. In these situations, that’s just to feel them, then let them go. But in others, ego can be a powerful motivator.
    • If someone else solves the snowdrift dilemma, I would feel disappointment, that I wouldn’t get a chance to see my hard work and personal sacrifice on bear fruit. Then I would move past those feelings and join forces with the other project (or move on to something else, if they don’t need the help). But on the other hand, having the cofounder title has motivated me to put in more than I otherwise would have. That comes from an ego place, but the result is aligned with my non-ego desires.

This works okay at our current size but doesn’t scale well. I considered it in this case, but didn’t want to make an already-long thread longer; I compromised by making this thread :haha:

Next step if @Salt is on board with this direction: brainstorm what text we’d like to go with :100:

  • I like my_thoughts_exactly.
  • I don’t think we can use symbols (they turn obi underscores), so 100%_agreed is off the table. Could do totally_agreed .
  • I can’t think of a variant on “took the words out of my mouth” that’s not either too long or unclear.
  • Could do something like whole_body_agreement, but I’m not sure that would be clear enough without additional explanation.
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I am definitely on board with the :100: reaction. As for the text, liking the list so far, wholeheartedly or some variance on that would also suffice.

Sure, but this is possible without ego as well. The title recognizes a commitment which entails a long-term agreement, a sense of responsibility to the mission and to others. All of that can be significantly motivating and free of ego.

Overall, the ego-based motivations are real but reliably have downsides. When we drop them, healthier motivations arise/thrive: curiosity, play, creativity, pro-social purpose, love…

In practice, there’s very little chance that someone else just solves the dilemma completely. Even in the unlikely case that some other project takes the lead, we will have so much to offer. We’ve worked holistically in so many areas.

Even right here, we are doing work on determining the best way to engage with online communication. In 2013, I was envisioning push-reactions where people could have multiple reactions and others could reinforce those. I didn’t imagine emoji but just text, but still… nothing offered that then. I’m happy these have finally become common, I don’t have to fight for it or build it myself. Now, the problem is that people are setting up mediocre sets of reactions. If common tools start using similar sets to the ones we’ve worked out, I will be thrilled. I only care to see us get credit as a source if it’s part of enhancing the standing of and our mission. Mostly I just want “changed-my-mind” to exist everywhere for its own value…

100% alignment title?

Some thoughts:

  • 100-percent
  • this-100-percent
  • with-you-100-percent
  • totally

I’m not a huge fan of having the term “100-percent” in the text itself.

It’s a bit intellectual[1], but unqualified_, unreserved_, or unequivocal_agreement are other options.

I’d prefer something with total rather than totally — the latter sees enough casual use that I am not sure it would communicate the idea effectively. Although I also prefer “agree” over “agreement”, so it’s a wash. Other similar adjectives: absolute, utter, pure

Don’t know if I like this one (very colloquial), but it matches :100: in tone: hard_agree

  1. whereas our reactions skew emotional (which does not imply not thoughtful) ↩︎

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Brainstorming seeming to have stalled, I’ll go ahead with :100: my_thoughts_exactly some time in the next couple of days unless someone wants to argue that one of the alternatives is better.

Unlike the primary reaction, this is easy enough to change this after the fact — we just re-upload :100: with the second new name and switch out the reaction; retort keeps the prior reactions around, including the previous name.

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:my_thoughts_exactly: :haha:

I do not like “my_thoughts_exactly”. I really oppose that label. In the very example here, mray did not state my thoughts, he stated something that I considered and felt I could fully support, not something I was already going to post myself.

I know you have this idea about wanting to mark that someone posted your thoughts, but that’s much less useful and less often applicable than “totally agree” or “yes, 100%” or something that doesn’t bring in extra meta junk about whether or not I had these ideas beforehand.

I was adding emojis to my OBS overlay today and ended up using totally to represent this one. Thoughts?

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