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Front page: Top stories, hot topics, and BEST RATED?

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posted on May, 15 2009 @ 04:17 PM
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Awhile back MarrsAttax put together a thread, jokingly, pointing out how to accrue massive ATS points and keep the post at the top of the ATS front-page (ie/ say something unintelligent - the less research the better so people have to point out your ignorance; state your case as fact - enraging skeptics; use video - text is boring; make a near-term outrageous / apocalyptic future prediction; be controversial - libeling a minority group is good). Though humorous, the underlying point of MarrsAttax's critique was never addressed.

I ask in earnest. Shouldn't we all be concerned about sensational stories pushing posts with real merit off the front page?

Yes, people prefer entertainment to in-depth research. Yes, people are easily goaded in to flame wars. And, yes, conspiracy theorists are especially prone to sensational story telling. Since we all succumb to these human failings why not add a third filtering mechanism? Currently ATS filters on two concepts.

  1. "Flags" (other posters find the thread important / fun / interesting / insightful) which translates to "top stories"

    and,

  2. "post volume" (other posters have strong opinions or are trying to solve / debate some element of the thread) which equals "hot topics."

I propose another filter "best rated."

If ATS added a concept like respect points or, perhaps, based respect points off the number of people that have declared the thread-author as a friend (coupled with applause?), these respect points could be added to (flags + Floor[Log(replies+1)]) to create a composite score for the thread. This composite score would then translate to the "best rated" filter. Meaning a threads "best rated" value could depreciate if a person removed respect points. I feel comments should be somewhat insignificant in the tabulation because usually in popular threads they boil down to "me too," "disagree," "you're stupid," "where's the pictures," etc.

So, for example, let's say a person comes to the site, creates a new account (respect=0), and authors a thread titled, "PHYSICAL PROOF gods of the Pantheon exist! BEHOLD ZEUS'S LIGHTNING ROD!" It accumulates 50 flags and 40 replies. An older member (respect = 55), who's hugely endeared by the community, posts a topic titled "University of Arizona study concludes quantum manifestations provably explain all UAPs", it gets 10 flags and 10 posts.

The new user would have a total composite score of 54 (0+50+Log[40+1]) and the old user would rate 67 (55+10+Log[10+1]).

Now I'm not suggesting that all of the older-users threads get a base 55 advantage. I'd say the base 55 should activate after about 5-10 user flags. At that point there's evidence people have a genuine interest in the thread; or scale the base points in at a rate of (CEILING[.10*respect points]) per flag up to a max of 10 flags.

One of the reasons I like the concept of "respect points" is it encourages people to behave. If someone removes a respect point it affects all of the persons posts. Somewhat similar to real life. For instance, say you hood-wink 50 billion dollars in an epic ponzi scheme and get caught with your hand in the cookie jar. No matter how respectable your past deeds it casts doubt on everything you've ever done.

I'd also argue that people should have the option to unflag or vote down a post for finer granularity (rather than penalizing all posts the person's ever submitted) all the way back to 0, but enough people here have already voiced that complaint.


That's my two pence anyways!

[edit on 16-5-2009 by Xtraeme]




posted on May, 15 2009 @ 04:24 PM
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Please add to the existing thread:

ATS, BTS, What would you like to see in the future?

Closing.

Peace


[edit on 15-5-2009 by Dr Love]



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