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A recommendation to overhaul thread rating system

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posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 05:25 AM
Currently ATS threads work under a single flag system. ATS members rate a thread by giving it a flag. With any thread that simply has breaking news it could easily be placed with the highest number of flags without really contributing any conspiratorial work invested into it and thus quick points.

My proposition is to overhaul the system and replace the Flags with star rating system. On a scale of 1-5 stars members can rate the thread over time as more and more members rate it the thread which formerly had 25 flags might have a star rating of 3.3 which would allow ATS members to make a very clear decision on whether that thread has truly great information within it or not.

* = Star

Okay so each thread would give the ATS member this option: * * * * *. You can pick the fifth star and give that thread a very high rating, you can give the thread one star which is a bad rating, you can give it any star 1-5, or you could not rate it at all.

This would encourage ATS members to make a good decision before rating a thread, it would provide for easier assorting of threads which are very constructive, and it would solve the whole thread making for flags. Members would be encouraged to work harder to earn a higher score.

This is just a suggestion. Please post your input.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 05:33 AM

I think it sounds like a good idea. It really would encourage people to put more effort into their threads. This in turn would raise the over all quality of the site as a whole. Not that ATS is bad quality. It's not. I'm just saying that it would put an end to posting threads just to get stars and flags instead of posting something that adds to the site.

Edit to add:I've noticed that a lot of good quality threads are often buried by the type of threads I mentioned above; those that are posted mainly to get stars and flags.
edit on 8-12-2010 by Skid Mark because: see above

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 05:45 AM
Sorry about the large quote. I'll make sure to cut it down in the future.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 05:48 AM
but then people will be marking 1 star for things that they disagree, but that still might contain great content. for example religious topics, economic topics.

The rating system is fine, you can flag and star if you agree and it has good info, flag if it has good info but you disagree with OP.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 07:17 AM
Interesting idea. This system has been effectively used in rating consumer products and services for quite some time. The higher the average rating the better the thread. It would actually make someone think before they toss the obligatory one flag and a star to a thread. I'm all for it!!

Unfortunately, this idea isn't complicated enough for ATS. We must worry about calculating Karma points and WATS ratings instead.

How about ATS K.I.S.S. for a change instead of trying to reinvent the wheel?.
This KISS notion rarely fails.
edit on 8-12-2010 by jibeho because: clarity

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 12:12 PM
Actually, in the very beginning of the star system implementation, it was possible to rate a post from 1-5 stars. What happens is, the results get skewed by the raw totals doing the ratings. Some threads and posts get a lot of views and people don't rate them as anything at all. Some may only get a handful of ratings. So for example, a thread that has 10 people rate it highly, could be viewed as a "better" thread than one that has 200 people rate it but it averages a 3.

In the end, it's still a very subjective thing. Some people will rate something highly just because they agree with it, even if it's inferior (another subjective call) quality. Others will rate based upon the effort perceived in creating the post. We all have different criteria.

What it boils down to is, we've tried a variety of methods. None are perfect and all will have flaws and be subjected to potential abuse. What we have is about as fair and practical as you're going to get, given any member can star (or not) any post or flag (or not) any thread.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 12:17 PM
Any change which would reduce the increasing tendency to create sensationalist headlines, often based on very little real info or thought, presumably with a view to getting stars/flags, would be welcome.
edit on 8-12-2010 by wcitizen because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 12:18 PM
A rating between 1-5 stars would be too similar to what other forum apps do, like vbulletin. One thing I like about ATS and it's system, it is unique. It's probably one of the best designed sites on the Web and it's functionality is beyond compare with typical forum apps.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 12:33 PM
reply to post by wcitizen

I don't disagree. But this is the double-edged sword with which we're dealing - it's member driven. Members create the content, members rate the content. The best thing ANY member can do is create good content. The second best thing is to contribute to the threads in which they take an interest and ignore the ones which are seen as not worthy of our time.

The paradox is, participating in a thread that's not necessarily what we'd like to see only bumps it and calls more attention to it. Then of course, we do have those people who are here purely for disruption or to just see what they can get away with. Fortunately, those usually don't last long. We spend a lot of time behind the scenes working with the people who genuinely want to participate but haven't yet grasped our difference in a demand for civility. When it becomes apparent that there's no intent to participate in a T&C compliant fashion, we generally don't waste a lot of time.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 12:58 PM
The 5 star system wouldn't really be much different to the flag system in practice because people just tend to give things they like 5 stars and things the don't like 0

First, one study using Amazon data has shown that many undetailed ratings (where the rater isn't required to add any additional information other than the rating they select) show a bimodal distribution. In other words the distribution of ratings tends to cluster around two different numbers (e.g., 1 and 5) rather than offering a normal distribution where the ratings cluster around a single height (e.g., 3). Thus the median of these ratings is not an accurate reflection of product quality, but instead is a statement of conflicting opinions.


If you give users a list of choices to rate things from like "Excellent Thread" "Some valid points" "Very poor" then you tend to get a bigger set of valid data points I believe but it would be hard to think of the right wording to fit all types of threads
edit on 8-12-2010 by davespanners because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 01:16 PM
reply to post by Misoir

The rating system seems to change every couple of years anyway. I'm all for awarding prizes for quality work. Perhaps an ipod or a skateboard for the youth and an heart monitor cuff for us seniors.

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 01:43 PM
I am seriously starting to wonder why people bring this topic up.

It is what it is. Why try to change it? Enjoy the whole site for what it is.

Remember, no one is required to leave a comment, star or flag. I think that is something between the thread posted and the person responding etc.

I think this would all come under the K.o.Y.D.B area. Know of your dam business.

It almost strikes the tone of jealousy. IMO

posted on Dec, 8 2010 @ 02:08 PM
reply to post by anon72

Oh, I don't know. I think there's a sincere desire to attempt to raise the quality level and one way to do that may be to provide additional incentive to post more quality. I doubt there's a member here who doesn't sometimes roll their eyes at some of the threads which get big flag counts or posts that get a lot of stars. I know I do. I'll sit here and think, "What could POSSIBLY go through someone's mind to flag (or star) that?"

The law of unintended consequences is always lurking in the background. No matter what we try, there'll be some inherent flaws, and since it's a process driven by all too fallible humans, that's just the way it goes.

Even though not all suggestions are acted upon, they're all read and considered to one degree or another. We'd much rather people care enough to try to help us improve than not.

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