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Massive Point Differences and RATS

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posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 02:48 AM
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I don't want to make a whine post, but I'm trying to understand the immense point differences between users on ATS.

I'm constantly seeing people who have hundreds of points, up to a few thousand, then a fairly large dead zone in the middle and suddenly people with hundreds of thousands of points at the top end. I have to ask - How are people getting this many points? Is there some way to almost exploit the system? Or have they been accumulated over 5 years?

You get very few points for replying (which I find fairly lame, because I personally prefer to read and jump in/out of many threads rather than focus on making a new one up) and I can't imagine how it is possible for members to get so many points this way. You certainly get more from creating threads, but unless you're making new threads every day in every ATS board and having them become hits, I just can't see how it's happened.

To be honest, deep down I want to complain because RATS is such an intriguing forum for me and the other little perks such as backgrounds are appealing to me, but seeing them be so ridiculously difficult to obtain is offputting.

I specifically bring up RATS too, because where in all the other cases you can say points aren't important (they're just cosmetic after all!) not being a RATS member means you're missing out on the best stuff. I can't imagine how long it'll take me to reach 5000, I've been lucky in getting some applause lately (thanks mods!) but that's a bit of a freak thing for me and I'm sure many others.

Then there's the 250 point upkeep cost which is actually a lot if you're replying or not refreshing ATS all day/making new threads. I guess I don't like it too much because I almost feel like it'll become a matter of finding a way around the system and exploiting it/abusing it. I'd be hard pressed to grab 250 points for RATS every month right now without flukes such as applause and I'm sure many other people would be too. Yet I feel it's just a case of sticking around until I learn what people want to read about, then abusing this to get my upkeep each month.

Having found out what sort of threads get responses (hint: alarmist threads :duh
I could always use this to rake in points if I needed to. Now ordinarily this wouldn't be neccessary, but with that stupid upkeep and the harsh 5000 in the first place it becomes tempting. As I said, without making threads for the sake of getting points I'd ordinarily have no chance in hell of getting into RATS and supporting it, despite how much time I spend on ATS.

I hold back from doing this sort of stuff now because I think it's wrong, I think it lowers the quality of the board overall. There's already enough waste to sort through every day on here without me contributing to it, but I hope people can see how this system encourages users, at least initially before they've purchased what they want, to exploit it and make wasteful posts.

Well, I started asking a question and now I'm on a rant. What do you think? Am I just a whiner?
If the system is fine, why am I struggling to get points? Should I just resort to making up stories like many others seem to be doing on this board daily? Should I throw out obnoxious threads such as "RELIGION: THE SCUM OF THE EARTH" just because I know it'll rake in 10,000 angry or supportive replies?

I don't know.


I hope I'm not being too critical of ATS, I really, really enjoy the site but this has been nagging at my mind and many members touched on it in the FAQ, but were not replied to as far as I could see.

[edit on 30/3/08 by Duality]




posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 03:04 AM
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The quickest way to get points is podcasting. I believe it's 5000 pts per pod.
There's also applause which the mods/admin give you if you make a particularly
good or informative post(these come with varying pts value i believe)



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 03:14 AM
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I feel your pain..took me ages to get my few points..
it's actually not all that difficult to accumulate points if you follow what is happening. If you make a good contribution to a thread you can get applause from a Mod=500 instant points (and a warm fuzzy feeling) and of course if you can come up with a good thread you can get lots of points from replies..Not always easy..
and then there is the special bonus points for participating it the general ATSness of it all..Such as the 5000 points offered by S.O just the other day for any members willing to sign up and participate on Twitter i.e AboveTopSecret.com is Tweeting on Twitter!
there was an instant free pass to RATS. not sure if the offer still stands but you can always U2U S.O and try..
Offers such as this pop up from time to time giving away any number of points which is why you find the occasional member with a million odd points..h/shee isn't cheating he/she has prob just won a bonus..

Oh and if you have the time for it BTS is apparently a great way to get points as well..really need to work on that one myself..


Hope that helps

CTH



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:02 AM
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Let me just say, this is not a negative or attack post, but points are nothing. What you should be focusing on is the quality of your posting and particapation on ATS


We use to have a different system on ATS when I first joined, it was based on stars and really cool resistance levels
Secondly, as I keep telling members, RATS is no different from other sections of ATS.

Why do I have huge points? Because I was here before the system was in place and so were many others. So, when it was introduced, we didn't start on zero and previous posts et al were calculated into a point total. Also, I've been applauded by staff quite a lot and made a few popular threads. It all goes back to what I said at the start, your posting quality is the most important thing.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:18 AM
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There are also various competitions for writing, photography, caption thingys and other random stuff. (mostly on BTS
)

MonKey



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:21 AM
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reply to post by infinite
 


Great reply. It's a lot like the parable of the two sons working the fields. In the end the one who worked them harder developed more harvest and became wealthy.

If you focus on quality posts, you learn something; how to research for one thing.

As far as RATS, it's really nothing special. If you're expecting to find the 'black vault' with all the answers you'll be disappointed. It's just a place where search engines can't index your posts.

So, yeah, post quality, do a podcast, keep alert for opportunities, win or place in a poetry contest, or a short story contest. Enjoy the journey and don't worry too much about the 'carrot' at the end of the rainbow. (how's that for a mixed metaphor?)



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:48 AM
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Thanks for the input guys, I agree with you that quality is important and while I will rarely ever have breaking news to submit or anything, I do try to make my posts substantial and constructive.

I guess I just feel the system makes it tempting to make post threads that will quickly get lots of responses for points, espescially when you have RATS to support. Haha... Not real ones in this case.


I suppose I should be less caught up on it. I always thought RATS would be filled with absolute gold, it's kind of strange to hear it's just like the rest of ATS.

I'm also surprised that many people have kept years worth of points, I was under the impression the points were erased in the big revamp that took place before I came to this place.

Thanks for the help everyone, this has all been fairly enlightening.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:53 AM
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There have been various ways to earn points in the past, which are no longer available to us. Thread-tagging for points is one good example of a former avenue to high point counts. I don't know why that practice stopped, but I'm sure disappointed about it. Bad people probably abused it, so the 3A's took it away.

We've got to grin and bear it.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:59 AM
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Points are not status. Somehow people come to the conclusion that point totals equal some sort of status, but it's just not so. I have seen people with 100,000+ points get hammered in a thread, just like a new member with 129 points might. I have seen worthless threads started by people with high point totals, and priceless threads started by people with a few hundred. You are who you are. (How many rich idiots have you seen in RL?)People get judged by others for what they say and do here. Respect is more important than points.

The points serve a purpose in that they require new members to actually participate, as opposed to being wallflowers. Because there is a desire to have the cool background, to have the RATS, then people are encouraged to dive in and post, and reply, and visit BTS. In general to be an active member. And once they forget about the points, and start participating, because they are enjoying themselves, the points creep up on them.

It's like becoming a citizen of another country. First you get your paperwork in order. Then you actually travel to that nation. Next you wander the streets trying to make sense of it all, and get locations set in your mind. Then, visa in hand you find work, learn the language, study the customs, go to the concerts, adopt a dog, make friends, and all the things that are life. And one day your papers of citizenship arrive. But you were a citizen in your heart long before the stamp of approval, because you worked to fit in, to belong, to be a part of a new culture.

Neither is how long you have been a member an indicator of worth. Many new members put in very valuable contributions, while members of four and five years do little more than lurk. Yes, penalties and banning are somewhat higher among new members, due to the "uncommon standards" of ATS, but it's not unheard of for older members to wear the red badge of shame, or even be banned. Some staff have a half million points, and others such as myself, barely a few thousand. (And trust me, I posted a lot as a member, before the job of moderator slowed my output.)

So just participate in all aspects of ATS. Dive in and discover that it's the journey, not the destination, that means the most here. The points, the cool background, the RATS, it'll all come. Become a full ATS citizen, it's worth the effort.

Just my experience and opinion.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 07:11 AM
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reply to post by NGC2736
 


Thanks NGC2736, you're right of course.


I think from now on I'll just focus on enjoying the content and exploring BTS and PTS (I've never really done PTS!).

I guess I'm too focused on notable progression in general.
I had that problem with gaming (World of Warcraft anyone?) and it makes it addictive but kills the fun too.

Thanks again to everyone who's posted here.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 07:31 AM
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Don't let them fool you..

Currently in RATS are thread with actual proof Elvis IS alive.. Michael Jackson IS an alien and Simon Gray is a 'PRINCE (AFKAP) Clone..

You gets free membership to the Illuminati AND the Masons..

Oh yeah.. It's a nudist only forum too.. Just bring a Hot-water bottle with you.. The seats are FREEEEZING!!


(DISCLAIMER.. ALL of the above information is complete and utter *cough*..lox)



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 07:51 AM
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reply to post by AGENT_T
 


For giving away secrets like that, it is the decision of the Council of Nine that you be reassigned to latrine duty on Uranus for the next 400 Earth years, provided your immortality shots are even renewed.

And the seats are only cold to you monkey boys with no hair!



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 05:16 PM
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RATS is really no different than the ordinary ATS forums. It just doesn't show up on searches. Usually it's actually kind of boring. Most all of the good stuff is where we can all get to it. RATS is just a bit more private is all.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 05:30 PM
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This link might help: All about points.

If you participate the points will come. I just got something like 5000 for coming in second in the caption contest. The vast majority of my points came from podcasting when podcasting was young. The writing competitions are great as well. (and rewarding) I wish they would offer 100 points for every story entered and that way every writer would walk away with something, not just the winners.

Still, points aren't difficult. Just hang in there and they will come.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 05:32 PM
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Seriously dude,

Don't get too hung up about it...

RATS has some cool stuff in but too be honest you will find the jucier stuff in skunkworks..

points are points...

you get over it.





posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 05:35 PM
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reply to post by seagull
 


So why is it even there?? A private club?....Ooooo.

Honestly, this site is more of pain in the ass than most others.
I really don't see any significance with this point system thing either.. I usually just go to "recent posts" and find what I want.
Really, this site would be a lot better simplified. AND weed out all the idiotic "myspacers" talking about pokemon and other moronic topics.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 05:51 PM
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I think you've kinda missed the point.

RATS is there to avoid search engines. The pokemon thread was kinda funny, I gotta admit, but it is not what this site is about. The poster was making an interesting point really....

RATS is not a club. It is just out of the search engine, whihc allows the members to discuss spome things - which are not outside T&C's - check out Springer's stoner impression - without every last googler getting in on it....

peace, my pizza is here,

MSP



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:02 PM
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reply to post by Bad Mulder
 


See the post above mine, and just below yours. Private club? Hardly. Searches just don't see the threads posted therein. That's all. Though the concept of a secret handshake is kinda cool. Impractical, but cool.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:03 PM
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AGENT_T / NGC2736:
ROTFLMAO!!


Since there's no way to star posts in the BB&Q forum all I can do is laugh and point at y'all for being so dang funny!



Originally posted by NGC2736
(And trust me, I posted a lot as a member, before the job of moderator slowed my output.)


And don't think some of us haven't missed your thoughts, NG.

And lest anyone should raise accusations of fawning the moderator; we were friends before NG went mod.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 06:17 PM
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don't say that.....

I know you're on a point hunt.

Don;t even try to deny it.



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