Default ratings idea...

Unanswered Question
May 7th, 2010


Has Netpro implemented any kind of default ratings after a certain period of inactivity? Expert Exchange does this when there's no activity, and I see a TON of people who put time into helping others, but they get nothing for it. Is this a possible solution, or something along those lines?



I have this problem too.
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Overall Rating: 5 (15 ratings)
burleyman Fri, 05/07/2010 - 08:03


I think that would be a great idea. I would also like to suggest that the rating level 1 an 2 be dropped and have

3 - Helpful

4 - Very Helpful

5 - Extremely Helpful

and if the post was not rated than you could it may have been somewhat helpful or the person just forgot to rate.


Daniel Bruhn Tue, 05/11/2010 - 12:13

Hi Mike,

So you are proposing all responses default to a 2 rating and users have the ability to give 3,4,5?  This could work but it would wreak havoc on your averages.  Thoughts?



Jon Marshall Tue, 05/11/2010 - 12:27

dbruhn wrote:

Hi Mike,

So you are proposing all responses default to a 2 rating and users have the ability to give 3,4,5?  This could work but it would wreak havoc on your averages.  Thoughts?




I'm dead set against this for obvious reasons

On the more general thing, as you say i'm not sure how it would work. You can't just rate posts based on quantity posted, well you can, but i don't think it would be very fair. And what does it get rated as ie. 2,3,4,5 ?

John's right in that a lot of people put a lot of effort in and a lot of it can go unrewarded but like you say we have discussed this before and there doesn't seem to be an easy solution. I think there are frequent posters who get a lot of help that never seem to rate and that can be annoying but i suspect first time posters just don't realise about the ratings.

I would be interested to know how default ratings work on the other sites ie. how do you choose the good content, how do you decide what to rate etc.


Timothy Albright Tue, 05/11/2010 - 14:10


Really appreciate the discussion and this is an important topic for all of us on the CSC team.  I am in agreement with Jon's comments.  I don't think default is the right way to go.  However, there might be some ways to augment the ratings that don't have the problems you've all identified.  Since this is the "idea" zone, let me share some ideas:

  1. We can make some changes to the site to make the rating method more obvious, and easier to use (as some of you have suggested, in fact).  For example, a tag that says: "this reply is not rated".  Open to some other thoughts there.
  2. We can also look at a change that allows qualified experts to rate content.  Maybe a TAC team could do some rating of posts that are "n" days old.  Many other communities do this (e.g., Microsoft).  This would need to be transparent and we would promote why the teams doing the rating are qualified to do so.  The point would be that the quality rating would still be peer based. 

Not fully done thinking about all of this, but it is on our radar.



Edison Ortiz Wed, 05/12/2010 - 05:25


How about using the eBay concept?

When I purchase something on eBay, I frequently get emails to rate the seller, this information is also shown under my account.

I think we should send frequent emails to original posters on threads they have not rated /similar to the eBay concept/.



John Blakley Wed, 05/12/2010 - 06:21

I think that's a good idea, and I'd be all for it.

BTW, I emailed my response to Edison's reply, but it never made it....



Leo Laohoo Tue, 05/11/2010 - 21:15

This could work but it would wreak havoc on your averages.

I agree.  I wouldn't want a default score.
Daniel Bruhn Tue, 05/11/2010 - 12:00

Hi John,

My favorite topic is ratings   This is an idea that hasn't come up in the past that's interesting.  I'll have to take a look at their site to see how it's implemented.  My biggest question is how do users identify quality content if some of the ratings is simply based on the act of posting?



burleyman Tue, 05/11/2010 - 13:04

No...I did not want automatic ratings unless the automatic was 5...  

Actually rethinking I don't think this would work very well. I still do this the ratings # 1 and 2 should go.....


burleyman Tue, 05/11/2010 - 13:07


Almost forgot...I seem to be missing the check box or button to mark a question I posted as answered.... did you take it away from me...


Daniel Bruhn Tue, 05/11/2010 - 14:43


Now why would I do a thing like that .  Can you point me to the conversation and I'll look into it.



burleyman Wed, 05/12/2010 - 05:32


It was in Network Infrastructure, LAN switching and it was  Spanning tree and the path data will take.


burleyman Wed, 05/12/2010 - 05:43

I think there is some merit in having someone review and rating or marking as solved, the reason is I have in the past did some searches for problems looking for solutions before I post and it has helped find solutions when they have been marked as solved or have been rate highly. So while getting points is a nice pat on the back and everyone who participates in this community deserves at least that, the bigger picture is finding solutions to issues quicker. I do think people don't understand the ratings and what purpose they have so I think we need to communicate that point to new users as well as some existing one. I would like to suggest that when a new users signs up they get an e-mail explaining the purpose for the rating system and how it could benefit them. I think we could also send an e-mail to the poster of the original question after a certain length of inactivity to ask if the question was solved and/or the information provided was helpful and give them a reminder to maybe go back and rate the post or mark it as solved.


rob.huffman Wed, 05/12/2010 - 07:03

Hey Guys,

John...thanks for opening up this "can of worms" just kidding

This is a very worthwhile conversation and as such I have rated all

of you with a +5. Thanks John, Mike, Dan, Tim, Jon, Edison and Leo

for adding your great insight!

I'm going to have to go along with all who don't want to do this "default"

rating of posts. We must continue to reward "quality" over "quantity" here

at CSC. It is sad that many great posts/answers never get the rating they

deserve, but it is an equal playing field for all who participate.

I do like the idea of trying to rate posts that go unrated, this sounds like

a good plan Tim. Hopefully, we all take the time to rate excellent content

when we see it, and maybe we could encourage others to do so as well. Perhaps

people here don't realize that they can rate ANY post, whether they participated in it

or not.

Ratings is always a touchy subject here, and we all know it isn't perfect. Dan and

Tim should be applauded for never closing the door when it comes to improving the




Jon Marshall Wed, 05/12/2010 - 10:25


I think Mike's idea of an initial explanation for new members signing up is a great one.

I would however be a bit wary of the ebay approach of sending e-mails to ask for ratings. I know personally that if i am going to get e-mails just because i have used a site that i tend not to want to use it and i think it could put people off posting questions. The last thing a busy person wants is to have more e-mails filling up their inbox. But that could just be me

I think Rob, as usual, has hit the nail on the head. It's about quality not quantity and although ratings are an issue, and probably always will be, if we go too far the other way so that people feel bound to rate we could just end up with every post rated exactly the same and then it almost becomes meaningless. There are some great posts that never get rated but there are also a lot of other posts that do get rated +5 etc. that are not as good, i know because i have written quite a few of them myself (the not so good ones just to be clear !). And to be honest if we see a great post that is unrated we can just rate it which is kind of an unofficial way of what Tim was suggesting with TAC.

I think it's a fine line between trying to get more people to rate and simply badgering them to rate which isn't what CSC is about. Perhaps rather than sending separate e-mails we could tack a reminder onto the e-mail that gets sent when someone responds with an answer ?


Leo Laohoo Wed, 05/12/2010 - 18:17

Forgive me for being cynical here but I believe that some people are reluctant or refuse to rate our posts because their problem has been solved or it is not their responsibility to rate something which fixes their problem.  I'd like to call it selfishness.  I do, however, ask them to rate our posts when necessary.

I found that owners are reluctant to rate when we point out to them that their solution is wrong, most of the time.  You'll know because if they have a problem they keep posting but once the thread gets silent, then you know it's been fixed.


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