Reactions count as likes?


I feel this a gap as the reactions doesn’t count as likes. This can cause some unexpected issue like if user use only reactions not :heart: than automatic trust level reach won’t work. We have some members who doesn’t like to use :heart: and always use :+1: instead. They can’t reach the trust level 3 by automatically if we use the default trust level settings.

I am not sure the best idea to count it as likes but some kind of count would be nice which can affect to the core values.

Is there any plan to integrate it more to the core?

For now I set the tl2 requires likes given and tl3 requires likes given values to 0.

Thank you :slightly_smiling_face:


That is asked at least few times. But my solution was same that you did, but the reason for that was different — calculating likes doesn’t tell anything else than someone is

  • diligent when giving likes
  • telling generally liked things to get likes, and that is not same as good or even useful

This deficit is one of the key reasons we are not using this plugin - the like count is a very important part of the TL system.

Please address this!!


Yeah I think we should allow multiple reactions in the discourse_reactions_reaction_for_like site setting.

The original reason it’s implemented like this, was to be easily able to avoid negative reactions (:-1: :angry:, etc) from rewarding topics in a way that likes do, which is a fair concern. With that kind of setup we might start unintentionally prioritizing posts and topics that make a lot of people angry.

If I recall correctly, we also want to someday add the ability to use any emoji as a reaction which would complicate this again… I don’t think we want to qualify every emoji as “positive” or “not positive”… there are a lot of grey areas. I guess maybe we could look at disabling the like impact entirely when reactions are enabled? :thinking:


What about allowing good emojis and giving the possibility to push up and show love with contributions sharing only cool emotions?

Then could be a plus for every community like an alien or rainbow, that should count as plus (like) by design because we have a flag for bad vibe things.


Searching the solutions about getting the reactions and the like count system compatible got me here.
Also found Support multiple-reactions per post (Retort style)

Counting likes makes sense to me because it’s another dimension of community interactions which is valuable. It can be used to measure the motivation of community participation.
I agreed that the mandatory of likes count in TL system is not ideal enough. But if the user will get score from community activities to level up, I think the like count is a part of those.


I think this needs to be configurable. If your site has reactions which are intended to be negative (or which could be construed that way), you might not want them counted in the same way as Likes.


I don’t allow negative reactions, but if I would, I would want them counted too. It is matter of action and participating in general.

For me counting or not counting likes is not any issue, because I don’t share idea where users are rewarded by quantity, not quality. But this is very much cultural question and up here in northern part of Europe points, badges and likes have zero effect.

I have a theory. Role of points, badges and amount of likes as an encouraging incentive is directly proportional to general use of small talk :wink:

So I use KISS and my users are TL1 right away, climb up to TL2 when using topics/post/reading and likes are something like get/given=1 because those can’t be 0 AFAIK and that’s it. There is no real differences between TL3/4 and if someone is active and capable enough they will be morerators, so I don’t use higher TLs at all.

Yes, I know. I don’t have thousands of users. I don’t have issues with bad behaving users. I don’t have spam issues (thanks to how Disourse works). So what works here propably and defenetly doesn’t work when heading more south or westbound.

So when I’m hoping that reactions should count toward amount of likes I mean

  • world wide users have tendency use more reactions than just likes and that breaks TL-system
  • we (= I) need ability to clean off totally role of amount of likes when building trust levels

We are likely to put some attention towards this in the not too distant future (and will seek more input about the design with regards to how not to count negative or neutral reactions as likes when we do).

But before we do that, I think we are likely to do this: Add ... option to Discourse Reactions, which is now unblocked since we have: Support more management to emoji reaction in chat? - #14 by mcwumbly

But some other things are taking priority between those efforts, so it’s not yet clear when they will rise to the top.


It would be great if the reactions had a score from -5 to +5. This would allow you to have more scenarios for using reactions. For example, convert points to points for other plugins, make comments with a negative number of points invisible,
improve or worsen reputation, etc.


To proactively comment on that :wink: I think that

  • for topic scoring, the sum of positive and negative reactions should be considered (i.e. :-1: x2 , :heart: x5 , :+1: x3 counts as -2 + 5 + 3 = 6)
  • for user trust levels, the amount of reactions given should be considered , after all, both positive and negative reactions indicate engagement)

Yes those do. And… out there is wide variety of forums and everytime a negative reaction is not a sign of demining atmosfere. Sure — it can be and negative signs can be misuderstood, but is :wink: or :rofl: any better? But admin of forum makes decision if negative ones are allowed or not.

I hate to say this aloud, but not whole world thinks american way what is appropiate and what is not. A bad example but up here on other side of big ocean something like t*ts is considered really childish but that is not situation world wide. Same thing how people react to reactions.

I’m trying to say don’t do same stupid mistake that Facebook, Youtube and every other platforms that don’t let user — here an admin — decide.

CDCK can still offer to hosted big companies neutral version. As is done already. There is no conflict between ”free” setup and closed hosted setup.


Exactly, so if the admin allows negative reactions then they should IMO be counted as engagement.

I’m not sure what you’re aiming at here? (but it might be good to know that I’m Dutch)


Not me either :rofl: But perhaps an american way to be pseudo-overpositive (from my point of view, of course) but at same time be very conservative, authoritative and even using heavily double standards when dictating what is tolerable.

And I’m underlining I’m talking how global US-based companies are acting in general, not how CDCK per se is acting. Another bad example: Facebook banned breasts because of USA, and guns because of Europe. That’s why there must be enough possibilities how and when adjusting something.

And… Sure, I understand the pain of tuning global platform; should there follow way of North America (when USA and Canada aren’t same; not even California or Texas aren’t similar one), Asia (that has wider variety than Americas ever), Africa (that is even wider than Asia and Americas together) or Europe (Nederlands, Nordic countries or Italy, a lot common, but totally different). And what shall we do with aussies and kiwis?

Putting all those in one place is a difficult task. But who’s rules will apply? There is really easy answer: admin’s rules (who is ruled by bigger bosses).

So, we need more settings :man_facepalming: And free hands to make our mind if negative reactions are acceptable and counted toward TL.

I kind of knew that. But I don’t blame you, it is not your fault :rofl: Just kidding, Nice country, friendly people, but way too many tourists visiting there for wrong reasons. But that corner of Europe is actually one example more: there is a lot different culturies and ways to act at very small area.


Negative reactions changes completely the initial functionality and splits the audience in two because there was only likes before.

Why didn’t use just ‘cool’ reactions?


I think the ideal option is to assign reaction points as -1, 0 or +1 points. This will be sufficient for most use cases.
For example:
:heart: 1
:100: 1
:ok_hand: 0
:-1: -1
:face_with_symbols_over_mouth: -1

Based on this it would be nice, a post having negative scores is lackluster compared to other posts


I made the silly assumption that other reactions were treated as likes, because I’ve only been testing positive ones. :man_shrugging:

Good idea @volanar about positive and negative reactions.

Or maybe even simpler: Some reactions can be flagged as negative and are excluded from calculations. The other reactions are treated like likes - as in my eyes there is no difference.

Is there any progress for this topic? I think that many Discourse communities which use reactions see more reactions used over likes. So the calculations or trust levels will be heavily affected already.


Yes, it is indeed a good idea. Let’s look at Understanding Discourse Trust Levels. Among the credentials for being admitted to and for maintaining membership in Trust Level 3 – Regular is this:

  • Must have received 20 likes, and given 30 likes.*

… that is within the past 100 days.

Receiving likes does reflect well on the recipient. Granting 30 likes during the prescribed period could also reasonably be considered to constitute constructive engagement in the community, but that might be a bit tricky if the grantor covets that gold-level Crazy in Love badge. On the other hand, receiving negative reactions, if counted, could point toward holding down that user’s trust level.

However, what can reliably be regarded as a negative reaction? For example, I personally would be quite reluctant to aim an angry reaction at another user. If I were, hypothetically, to use such a reaction, it would likely be to express agreement with the author of a post that a situation described in that post is a vexing one, for example one where the user identified rampant misuse of a large language model (LLM) to generate posts on behalf of a user, so that the user may quickly gain credentials. In that context, the angry reaction would rightly be considered a positive one, appreciative of the author’s having identified a problem that needs attention. Some users other than myself might use negative reactions differently. Due to that ambiguity, I am currently inclined to avoid using them entirely.

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1 Like

I agree. But negative votes can make messages dimmer, as less useful and to reduce visual noise.

I think that negative reactions should not lower the user’s trust level. It is better to influence his messages.
Reactions also indicate the value of the message. As a rule, negative and useless messages for the community have negative reactions.