Weirdness with the thumbs up/thumbs down responses?


Jul 28, 2018
Has anyone noticed (or have an explanation for) some oddness in the thumbs up/thumbs down responses to comments of the main articles recent?
Let me clarify...

The VC WAP article came out about a week ago. Because I was very curious about how the comments would be for that issue, I checked back on it about every 48 hours. Naturally there was the usual mix of "I can't believe you hate my favorite song" to the "I can't believe I didn't see this earlier" statements, with a variety of thumbs up/thumbs down responses.
But a few days ago, ALL the thumbs up/thumbs down responses disappeared. It was not only on the WAP article, but on many of the recent articles as well. The comments themselves were still there, but no reactions of thumbs up/thumbs down responses.

I checked back about a day afterwards and noticed the thumbs up/thumbs down responses had returned.
I noticed a few of the comments I had particularly noted had an increased/decreased thumbs up/thumbs down responses. I figured what ever happened had been fixed sometime before I returned to the site, and everything was back to normal.
Today I checked the article one last time before moving on to the newest "Cuties" article, and see something a little weird. Some of the WAP comments that had previously received very high thumbs up numbers, now had moderately high thumbs down numbers. A few new articles that had not been present on the site for at least the 2 or 3 days of this whole process suddenly had extremely high thumbs up numbers.

I know public opinion is a fickle thing. But I've watched this website for over 10 years, and have gotten a sense of the general sentiment of the people that usually respond to VC articles. Reactions usually builds gradually, and don't dramatically switch unless something very unusual happens. Plus with the thumbs up/thumbs down responses that just VANISHED for a day or so, I'm wondering if there may have been some tampering happening. I remember several years ago VC was off line multiple times, and then reappeared in a new format, too. So perhaps something like that is happening as well.

Anyone else have thoughts/comments?