The Ratings Nightmare

Discussion in 'General Postloop Discussion' started by ROBOLB, Aug 20, 2016.


    ROBOLB New Member

    I'm fairly new to PostLoop (6 months) and have been using it to boost the content on a fairly slow forum.

    The whole topic of ratings is starting to make me question my long term use of Post Loop. I understand it's a complex and delicate issue and my apologies if I still don't grasp the nuances.

    I use the rating system in a simple away to keep posters who are adding value and to block posters whose content I deem to be below the standard I require. If I don't set a rating required level, I will end up with nonsense posts about gaming which has nothing to do with my forum. Been there. done that.

    So rating seems to be the only tool at my disposal to 'control' who I allow to post.

    The rating system is out of 5. In my mind a 5 is only for outstanding work. I haven't seen any yet, related to my topic. I reckon a 4 is good. that's 80% !

    But then I started getting complaints from writers that I wasn't rating high enough. Well quite frankly their work wasn't good enough. Nothing to do with length, but relevance.

    Today I'm in 'message ping pong' with a writer who is complaining about ratings, in that it affects his overall average and his income per post. I was not aware of that impact. I don't think it's made very clear to site owners.

    Also there is an option to make the rating anonymous, which I thought might help avoid confrontation, but it seems that Anonymous doesn't actually mean Anonymous. Go figure.

    So my dilemma now is, do I:

    1. Re rate my best writers to 5, and set the minimum rating at 4.9. But that will preclude most new writers.
    2. Stop rating at all.
    3. Stop using PostLoop.

    My first reaction to complaints, was that who are these people who feel so entitled to a higher rating, when their work is clearly not good enough...

    But I now understand and appreciate both sides a lot better. Maybe I need think of ratings in a different way, not just related to work quality?

    And I should add, I have some very good and loyal post loopers on my site. (who seem happy with 4.5 or 4.6) I would hate to loose them. But the complaints of less capable writers and the distraction / noise it creates might make closing my post loop account a better option. (I should add that my forum is a very minor 'hobby' that I spend about 30 minutes a day on)

    Any constructive feedback from either side of the house would be most welcome..
  2. Thea Luxton

    Thea Luxton New Member

    The ratings system has always been a hot topic, and as a poster I don't feel that anyone should 'demand' a higher rating but may ask why the rating was lower than expected. Naturally, you don't need to respond,and the 'ping' pong' exchange seems unnecessary, and nor should the poster try to guilt trip you in to saying it effects their earnings. While it may do, it depends on whether that rating was fair. Most posters sees 4 as a minimum, and anything under as low.

    I've been on PL for a couple of years, and there are many hit and run posters that do get away with things, and I tend to put them on ignore or choose not to interact with them as they write such nonsense that I can't bring myself to reply.

    If I were you, keep the posters you like and up the rating to control who posts, and let go of those who are too much trouble.
    Some owners when they have been in your situation use the 90 day period where they disable the forum and that means if no posts are made on a forum in that time, all posters are automatically unsubscribed. This allows them to start from scratch without having to revoke people, and usually they set the bar higher or message certain posters to join.

    I moderate for one forum, and we had one poster who kept pestering the owner to lower the rating so he could join again, after they had done the above and upped the rating. He ended up pestering for ratings too, and bad mouthed the owner on another forum, so we banned him. Some people are too much effort and not worth the hassle.
    3 people like this.

    ROBOLB New Member

    Thanks for your response Thea.

    Just to make sure I understand this. If I now rate my best posters as 5, any of the existing posters with ratings under 5 will no longer be able to access my forum?

    Or is the average rating taken into account, rather than the rating I gave?
  4. Thea Luxton

    Thea Luxton New Member

    It's the average that matters. If you lock your forum at 5 now, all the subscribed posters can still post unless you revoke them. It's only after 90 days everyone must subscribe again.

    Your options seem to be to revoke those who are troublemakers, and then set the rating to join higher to prevent further subscribers.

    The rating you give contributes to the average, and it depends on their other ratings and when they had them (they are based on the last 10 ratings, or a rating average of 3 or more within 30 days) so ratings will fluctuate for new posters frequently.
    3 people like this.

    ROBOLB New Member

    OK, thanks. As I've been going a while, is there anywhere on the postloop site that I can see a list of my PL subscribed posters? I can only see a list of those that I have rated.
  6. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    If you let writers bully you into a higher rating, you are only contributing to the very problem you describe. If everybody were to rate writers fairly based on the scale that we provide, and ignore demands and threats from writers, then this wouldn't be a problem. I've been doing this long enough to now that that's not going to happen. It is what it is. Trust me, it cannot be fixed. And we do enforce somewhat fair use of the rating system. Meaning when we do see site owners skewing ratings that do not reflect the quality of the content, we'll warn them and in some cases ban them. There have easily been 50 site owners banned from Postloop for not giving accurate ratings.

    You can see your subscribers by going to your dashboard, then Sites, then click this icon next to your site - [​IMG]
  7. Aloony

    Aloony New Member

    I don't rate unless asked anymore...and I tell them what they've earned and how to do better. If they put the effort in they will get better.

    Exceptions of course to people stealing content, bullying others, generally cheesing me off or rulebreaking etc.

    ROBOLB New Member

    Sadly I will need to reduce the number of PostLoop posters. The sheer number are outweighing the 'natural' members and also it's getting really expensive because there are so many.
  9. Psyche

    Psyche New Member

    If you look at the rating level required to even get work, you can see why people don't want to be rated below that number. The "problem" isn't rampant writer ego, it is that the system requires inflated ratings for the writer to be able to get jobs. So if someone wants me off their forum, I would rather they just told me.
  10. ROBOLB

    ROBOLB New Member

    Thanks. I see your point. It's a bit like the freelance sites such as eLance. Or even to an extent eBay. No one wants to give or get a bad feedback score.
  11. happyflowerlady

    happyflowerlady New Member

    The majority of the active writers on Postloop are rated somewhere between 4-5. When you consider that you have to have almost a 4 rating to even cash out your earnings, you can see that anyone under a 4 is either a beginner, or not a very good poster, usually.
    Since you don't want any more posters from Postloop, I agree with what @Thea suggests.
    If you lock your forum at 4.9/5, you will only get the very top posters, or ones who have a specific interest in your forum and write to ask you if they can join it.
    Then, if you start revoking any posters that you already have who aren't contributing the kind of content you want to have in the forum, you will get the ratio of regular posters to Postloopers back to where you want it to be.
    Since revoking simply removes the poster, and doesn't damage their rating at all, you should not have any repercussions like you do when giving out a lower rating.
    3 people like this.
  12. Aloony

    Aloony New Member

    Just change your post amount to 5 or something, no need to get rid of people. Those who like the forum will stay and those who don't will leave :).
  13. Zacchaeus Knight

    Zacchaeus Knight New Member

    Also you can't cash out if you are not rated higher than a 4.1
  14. Jordan

    Jordan That One Canadian Guy Staff Member

    It is fairly simple to get a 4.1 rating so long as you actually post good quality posts and not short 1 sentence replies. Make sure your posts are detailed and go into explanations that may add value to the threads.

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