I started this discussion here, but this would be a fairly big thing so I wanted to start a new category with a more direct title.
Put simply, the original intent with the voting system in the Feature Requests category was to let people express themselves without having to write a comment, to allow iNat staff to sort requests by vote, and (per the way Discourse designed it) make people use their votes sparingly and move them from one topic to another.
However the voting system is pretty complicated and folks don’t want to manage their votes; many requests gaining the most votes are more long-term complex features that will take months or years for iNat staff to implement; and lots of good but easier requests which no one voted for have been implemented. So regardless of votes, a request’s merit and complexity tend to be the determining factors to whether it moves forward in a relatively timely manner.
So I propose removing the voting system from the Feature Requests category as it seems to be an unnecessary complication. Since no other part of the forum uses voting, the number of votes you have or don’t have would be immaterial. Moderators and staff would still need to approve new requests, and if you want to express support for a request, you can heart the original post - simple.
How does that sound?