|Suggestion for measuring opinion|
Would it be possible to consider adding a system to the forums that allows people to agree/disagree with posts. I come here to read expert opinion and because a lot of it is just that, opinion, having other experts being able to quickly agree/disagree with a post (much like a "thanks" button) would assist readers to guage if the opinions expressed are widely agreed to be right or wrong.
Even if it doesn't show the names of those who "voted", just a count of agree/disagree would be useful.
It's an interesting idea, but I would be concerned that we would be giving speculation and opinion an air of authority.
I also think it might discourage conversation.
Upvoting and down voting of posts adds nothing to any forum, it merely encourages "cliques"..we each know who we listen to ( even if we may not agree with them generally on on particular points ) and who we respect, and who has the "cred" in our individual eyes, so that we follow or pay more attention to their posts, even if they might sometimes be at odds with our own ideas or hypotheses..
Many would be amazed at some of those to whom I particularly give "cred" to , for example, as from reading posts and threads, we would not appear to get on...
If you need "vote buttons" to let you know who is worth reading and listening to, you haven't been reading and listening attentively enough..
.. and what about the posts that say "If I say one thing and X says something entirely different, he's right and I'm wrong"? If you agree, what are you agreeing with? :)
Now, if there were a mechanism for disagreeing with your own posts... The downside to slapping a strict time limit on self-editing is that if you later realize you said something completely wrong, you can't go back and paste in a boilerplate "This post dating from 2007 is mistaken in every respect". Or even change the body of the post, if there's no follow-up to create confusion. You're reduced to "All that stuff I said back on page 2 of this thread? Ignore it; I was talking through my hat." And then only if the thread is still open.
|Many would be amazed at some of those to whom I particularly give "cred" to , for example, as from reading posts and threads, we would not appear to get on... |
Insert quote from Voltaire here. Or Rousseau or whoever it was. You know the one I mean.
Sanity is not statistical.
In the technical forums, there a few members who are the undoubted experts. If you can't spot them, well, tough.
In the more opinion-based forums membership and contribution is, to some extent, a function of the prevailing sentiment. Most people are vastly more likely to frequent a community that is in harmony with their own views. Dissenting opinion is therefore a rare and valuable commodity, and if you discourage such contributions by devaluing it relative to the "clique" you will end up crushing the pluralism that is essential to any vibrant community.
I suppose, if you wanted an ambitious project, you could have a top-down approach. In these authority-resistant times, it's more often called "seeding".
If Mods and Admins gave an "Expert" (or less loaded term) badge within SPECIFIC fora, newbies and casual visitors could tell who was who. "Experts" could then nominate new experts, with mods having casting votes and veto powers. Max
It's less cliquey, but more open to abuse, and potentially divisive. And highly likely to cause resentment if "expert" status did not reflect majority opinion (which would be the whole point of a top-down approach anyway).
Lucy24 has a valid point: this obviously wouldn't work for every post and might lead to confusion. A thanks system would be more apt but while those are at times useful (I like thanking people that are genuinely helpful), I am not sure that would fit WebmasterWorld.
|In these authority-resistant times... |
Good luck to those people with ranking in Google then :-) But I like the Expert thing myself. It's helpful to new members too. Then again, the more I think about it and read the comments above, the more I think the whole idea wouldn't really flow here.
Thanks for the input anyway...but let's ditch that idea then :-)
Just as a side-note: personally I don't believe such things as "cliques" exist - I regard it as a derogatory term used by those who don't follow the same thought paterns as some others and are frustrated they can't get them to change how they think. But I understand that it is inevitably an issue that will raise it's head at some point with any voting or thanks system.
|Just as a side-note: personally I don't believe such things as "cliques" exist |
Few years ago we had one here trying to recruit in the Aff forum..each praising each others posts, no matter what forum they posted in, aff, ecom, foo, search..lots of some of us are earning huge money , fast cars, big houses etc etc ..eventually a few "more info, sticky me type posts".."clique" of a different sort from what I was referring to above, it had an end in sight, sort of "ponzi aff deal"..
But the "sytem" was basically the same..except voting makes it much harder to spot when it happens..for whatever reason..there is already a lot of "trawling for SEO clients" happens .."experts" would make spotting that even harder than today..
Plus , who decides who receives the status of "expert" ? in the last few days I heard from someone something completely crazy,( shows a basic miss-understanding of how site architecture works ) that was suggested to them by an "expert"* here..as a solution to their problem..equivalent to shooting themselves in the foot SERPwise, and their following and implementing of the "expert" advice appears to have done just that..or at least massively exacerbated the problem..and the "expert" missed so much broken code in the site that it astounded me..still does ..
*If names were being put forward or voted upon here, to be designated "experts"..I'm certain that their name/nick would be in any top 20..I feel sorry for their SEO clients..
Be very wary of those whose reputation is built in by their posts or even their position in fora..especially if they have paying clients, many of whom will take such posts and or positions as being evidence of knowledge, understanding and ability..
Some do know what they are talking about and will give good advice..some ( including some of the most technically coherent talkers and prolific posters ) when it comes down to real sites, outside SEO fora and industry boards etc..appear to have only a very flaky grasp of what they post and advise about..and no idea what to look for when diagnosing problems in a site..
Like the guy whose self sewn shirt says "coach"..advising someone about "fitness", not seeing their broken leg, and their open wounds, but telling them, that if they "wash their hair" and "clip their nails" they'll "look healthier" and "have a better chance to beat the competition"..in a marathon..