I had not encountered optional stop signs before coming to Victoria.
The principle is simple – not stopping when not necessary. This makes it more convenient for motorists, but in particular for cyclists. No need to get off and stand beside or astride the bike, or to attempt to balance while standing still.
There are several places where one can observe the efficiency of the process, like at Claremont and Wesley, or Haliburton and Wesley, but especially at Claremont and Lochside, where a large number of cyclists pass.
If stopping was obligatory, meaning “always stop,” then “always” ought to be spelled correctly and not “all ways.”