Getting The Point
To my enduring delight, ATS is moving away from a points system which effectively encouraged spamming the boards with low-quality “quickie” posts
and flame-bait threads and is rewarding certain kinds of content with substantially
larger point awards.
The net result of this will be an improvement in the overall content of the board. In fact, I'm already seeing it and I'm sure others are, as
This is a very good thing.
I applaud (sometimes literally) the staff for making this excellent move.
Speaking of applause, I was slow to recognize the importance of applause in the “new ATS economy”, and have been somewhat stingy with it. In light
of the importance of applause, however, I'll be loosening up with it, although I still have no intention of applauding anything that I don't
honestly and sincerely think deserves it.
Essentially, when you get applause, the staff is telling you: “Keep doing that!” It's a way of giving you solid feedback that you are
contributing quality content to ATS, and encouraging you to maintain your high standards.
By the way, myself and others with applause powers rarely applaud people for agreeing with our points of view. My first applause was given to a member
who pointed out in no uncertain terms that I was wrong,
and did so in an admirable way. That earned my applause, and is one of the kinds of
things I do applaud.
The purpose of applause is not to reward kowtowing or try to corral members to think a certain way, it's to recognize the quality
that we think make ATS and its sister boards better.
If you want points, a good way to get them is to submit posts that are thoughtful, respectful of other members, well-researched and well-sourced
(links are good), well-formatted (yes, neatness and readability count, so use those enter keys) and most important of all, the kind of post you
would like to see more of on ATS.
ATSers disagree on all sorts of things, and if people want to get along around here, they need to learn that. But almost all
ATSers tend to
agree on what makes a post exceptionally good.
Knowing that, I recommend adding a little extra to your posts. Take a few extra minutes to make your posts better. Do that enough, and you may earn
applause for doing it.
And don't be disappointed if your masterpiece post doesn't get applause. It's an honor, not a privilege.
Want Points? Try PODcasting!
If you have dollar signs in your eyes (or “point signs”, I suppose), the “big money” right now is in PODcasting.
Currently, each podcast you submit to any ATS or BTS feed will earn you 2500
points. That's right, 2500
points. That's the equivalent
of 2,500 “me too” one-liner posts or 1,250 replies to a hot-topic thread. Or ten
applauses, for that matter.
That's a lot
of points. Podcast enthusiast that I am, I'm really cleaning up, to say the least. But frankly, even if podcasts paid zero
points, I would still be going nuts on the podcast feeds, because the whole podcast dimension blows me away.
In handing out such massive amounts of points for podcasts, our benevolent SkepticOverlord
is clearly encouraging members to plug in their mics
and hit the podwaves with their news and views. He's doing this because he believes, like I do, that podcasts aren't just a fun gimmick, but the
seeds of a revolution.
If you're shy about the idea of talking on the Internet or revealing your voice to your fellow members, 2500 points a pop is one hell of a powerful
I don't expect the 2500 points/podcast bonanza to last forever, but it is crystal clear that SO and the senior staff are keen to generously reward
members who are willing to move beyond the limitations of what has been a text-only medium and put our online community at the leading edge of
For more on PODcasting and what it can do for you, check out:
ATS Member PODcasts, Official Announcement
I didn't really understand podcasting
Introduce Yourself with a Podcast!
ATS Member PODcasts
See you in PODspace!