Feedback Needed: Custom Tasks for Points

Discussion in 'Suggestions & Feedback' started by Ryan, Mar 23, 2012.

  1. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    As mentioned at here, I am currently brainstorming a new feature at Postloop which would give our users the opportunity to exchange services outside of simple post or comment writing. We have had users ask in the past if we could add a way for people to earn Postloop points for special tasks at a forum or blog, outside of typical posting or commenting. The answer has always been no, because these things cannot be automatically tracked, are difficult to attach a number/price to, and are outside the scope of Postloop. I've thought about this some more and would like to hear your thoughts on a potential implementation.

    The plan would be to provide an area at Postloop that is separate from the forum and blog listings where anybody, not just site owners, can list custom jobs that they would like other Postloop users to perform. These jobs could be anything like:

    • Article writing
    • New threads at a forum or Guest Posts at a blog - pay writers to go above and beyond making simple replies and comments and rather give them bonuses for creating lengthy new threads, reviews, guest posts, etc.
    • Moderator/staff duty at a website
    • Reply to every introduction thread that is created, daily
    • Graphic work
    • Coding work
    • Paid promotion (Twitter, Facebook, or Banner/Link promotion)
    • etc.

    Here are my concerns, some of them significant:

    • Dilluting the purpose of Postloop. The Postloop concept, as-is, can be confusing to a lot of people. Adding another level does not make this any better and could perhaps take focus away from "what is important" at Postloop, and that is our content exchange.
    • A hodge podge of odd jobs that are impossible for Postloop staff to moderate. My biggest concern here is that if we opened this to any and every task, it would turn into a poor version of Fiverr or Microworkers. One way to hedge against this would be to restrict job offerings to a specific list, ie: this is only to be used for Articles, Reviews, Guests Posts, Threads, and Moderator/Staff Duties. We would not allow users to list things such as graphic or coding work, which is really what is outside the scope at Postloop. If jobs were restricted to work on a specific site, it could be listed along with the site at Postloop as opposed to being listed in a separate section or area at Postloop.
    • Quality management. We all know that all writers are not created equal. If somebody at Postloop is seeking an article, how do they set a price when they do not know the quality that they will receive? Without creating a full-blown article writing service, this may be difficult to offer on a small scale. I have considered offering a separate section at Postloop for article writing with everything that you would expect out of one but have steered clear as not to lose focus on what Postloop is for.

    None of this would have any impact on how the current post and comment exchanges work. They would continue to operate as they do today. Everything would be optional, as it is today. You take on as much or as little as you want. All tasks would be paid for in Postloop points and would go to the same "pool" that you deposit into or withdraw from.

    Thanks in advance for your feedback!
    Walter, neo240, Guardian and 2 others like this.
  2. Pete

    Pete Staff

    I really like where you're going with this Ryan. Can't say I'll take advantage of all of the things you're talking about here, but I've already talked with you about some of it. The listing specific tasks that are available to be done is a good idea, and it's something you could add to each member's profile. For example, if I was looking for someone to help moderating one of my forums, I could do a search for people who've checked off the box that they'd be interested in moderating. We'd probably need a separate rating system for each too, because obviously someone could be great at posting but not so great as a moderator, and vice-versa.
  3. Jessi

    Jessi Member

    I personally love the idea. I'm a little concerned with some of the same things you brought up....dilution, turning into a knockoff of Fiverr/Mturk/etc. Starting slow and with the basics first would probably help keep things from getting under control.

    Maybe later on you could offer the coding and such to be allowed as requests, but only for site owners who have been with PostLoop for X amount of time? That way, you don't have to deal with new people joining just for that, and if they've been here for a long while, then they know what everything's about, are settled in, won't take quite as much moderating/hand-holding/whatever.

    Actually, the same sort of "been a member for X time" requirement could be used to access that sort of section completely. That would give you time to weed out people naturally as they start sucking with the forum posting itself and would decrease some of the problems you'd probably run into across the board.
    happyflowerlady likes this.
  4. Guardian

    Guardian Active Member

    These still fall in the area of content creation so I think they would still be a great fit for Postloop. As Pete said, a separate rating system would be more constructive and beneficial for it. I myself think I am pretty good at 'foruming' but when it comes to writing an article, I don't think I would do too well. People have strengths and weaknesses, and different ratings would make it easier to find the best people for the job. Although not sure how easy it is to do that and maintain it.

    I do like the ideas, I think they are great and would make Postloop a more one-stop-shop for forum and blog owners.
    neo240 likes this.
  5. SifuPhil

    SifuPhil Member

    I'm wondering if a separate but related site wouldn't make it easier to implement a few of these ideas? Sort of like a university with separate colleges, or a company that has several divisions or individual companies under its umbrella...
  6. neo240

    neo240 Member

    That is a really good idea Ryan. Although I am not a very good article writer, but I am good with promotion and marketing. And if that allows me to get points, then all the better. Just a question, Currently we can withdraw based on the average user ratings. Will that also be applicable for the promotional part of postloop?
  7. Ansem

    Ansem Forum & Blog Owners

    You can create a fair price of points for articles, also for creating designs, as you agree on the price beforehand.
    But how will you check if a promoter really does his/her work ?
  8. wengthemeng

    wengthemeng New Member

    I think your ideas would be great to implement on Postloop, but it's easier said than done. I typically like your points on what "custom jobs" on Postloop can be like. I would be able to fulfill multiple roles in that list. Some of the custom jobs listed would be hard to monitor and standardize, like article writing as you have mentioned. Others though, I can picture there being a way to monitor it.

    The biggest concern would probably be how would you monitor all of these new activities if you were to implement it into Postloop.
    neo240 likes this.
  9. encryptedbytes

    encryptedbytes New Member

    If you are concerned with diluting the PostLoop brand, you might consider developing the new ideas as sister-brands such as ArticleLoop and ModLoop. If you're concerned with content quality in the new areas, you could require that users already have some experience with PostLoop and have a certain rating level before participating in the other areas.

    I think I'd confine the new jobs to text-based content creation, but there are certainly areas that could be branched into here, so keep brainstorming.
  10. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    That is one of my concerns listed above and the reason for this feedback thread. Splitting this into a separate site is a good idea and something I've considered, but I personally will not do this. If I feel that this works and will fit into Postloop, I will do it. If I feel that it does not fit into Postloop, I will not do it. I do not wish to open up separate sister sites.

    This is the kind of question that would come later in the planning process. There are bigger decisions to make before we start considering stuff like that...such as whether or not we even add this, and if we do, to what extent.

    If that were an option as a custom job (and that is a big if), then monitoring completion would be done by the site owner, or whoever listed the job. The same concept would be used for many of the other jobs as well, but not necessarily all of them. Article writing, for example, could be monitored by Postloop. Promotion or staff/moderator duties could not.
    neo240 likes this.
  11. wjack2010

    wjack2010 Member

    The concern over the quality of articles, how about a per word rate? So for every "word" or "character" (chosen by task creator) you earn a certain amount of points. This would work then, so the longer the article the more you'd earn.
  12. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    Quantity != Quality

    Just as we have addressed post quality at Postloop using more than a simple # of words per post formula, we would address it with article writing as well...if we were to add that capability here.
  13. wjack2010

    wjack2010 Member

    Well, I believe the task creator should have some "freedom". They choose how they'd like to pay, number of words or characters, or pay per article at a rate of there choice, but they can deny the article submission if it's too low quality.
  14. Pete

    Pete Staff

    Ryan, I think wjack may be onto something, if you take the next step and apply the same logic you used for posts it might fit well.

    You could simplify it and instead of paying per-word, you could break down articles into sizes. For example, a "Small" article could be 200-400 words, a "Medium" article could be 400-700 words, and a "Large" could be 700-1000 words.

    So, for a "Small" you'd get X points, for a "Medium" you'd get Y points, and for a "Large" you'd get Z points. Then, the rating of the person who has written the article can act as a modifier much in the same way that you've used ratings for posting to modify the number of points earned.

    Maybe if you start going in that direction it makes more sense.
  15. Grumpy

    Grumpy Forum & Blog Owners

    I do like this idea and the overall idea of allowing article writing and things of the such here at Postloop. However, I feel that if these are added, restrictions should be applied and the features would have to be closely monitored for abuse by Postloop staff. Even things such as other forum owners giving X amount of points to another writer via this system for them to withdraw on their behalf... If they don't fit the withdrawing criteria. The grounds for abuse are the things that need to be thought out firstly, I believe.
  16. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    Pete: I agree, however wjack suggested that quality should be judged based on length. Quantity and quality are two completely separate concepts and point determination would likely take both into account. This is how you've explained it and how I had thought about it as well. Post "quality" at Postloop is not determined on length alone. It is length, content, grammar, etc. Article writing is no different, only the nature and delivery of the content vary.

    Grumpy: We would of course take things such as that into consideration.
  17. Pete

    Pete Staff

    Ryan, I didn't read it that wjack was saying quality was to be judged by length, but rather points earned to be earned by length. We don't do that with forum posts, but most freelance article writers will charge by the word count. It's not the same thing as quality.
  18. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    I favor the approach that I sent you privately a while back, Pete ;)
  19. dojo

    dojo Forum & Blog Owners

    Don't know how you'll do it, but this is a great idea actually. I have decided to STOP posting in most forums, after receiving two 4.0 ratings and not knowing who gave me these lousy ratings. I am used to getting 4.8-5, since I am really putting a lot of effort into my posts and didn't even got a response to what I did wrong. I presume they consider 4 to be an excellent rating, since one actually commented about my great posts.

    Well, until people learn how to properly use a rating system, I will post in 3 forums only that have given me good ratings and their admins seem to know how to do this properly. Had my entire rating and point bonus messed up 'thanks' to those 2 forum admins, so i am not taking any more chances.

    Can't be anything but HAPPY if we can get any other ways to earn points, so that i can avoid being 'worked' like this. Please keep us posted and make it happen :)
    SifuPhil and neo240 like this.
  20. dojo

    dojo Forum & Blog Owners

    Looks like TC is doing very well and I've taken it off postloop already. I have enough points in the 'reserve' (over 300), but I'd like to keep them for the future. Want to 'force' the community to go naturally from now on, since we're picking off speed nicely. PL did it's job well, it's now my turn to keep the momentum going on :D
    Guardian and Ryan like this.

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