Friday, January 05, 2007

Numbers speak

I really ought to stop checking the JBlog Central.

There was a time when I found both Shiloh Musings and me-ander in the top listings. Then me-ander dropped down, and Shiloh Musings was around number 19 or 20. Not long ago I noticed that it was up to 8 or 9. And then it seemed like some sort of campaign to knock it down.

Not all of my posts are super great, and there's no objective criteria for what constitutes a great post. But when one of my political posts, illustrated with a photo (which I took) and then commentary on an article which is then reproduced gets "1 out of 5," you know that it's to knock it down in the standings.

Here's the important, crucial question:
  • What constitutes a good post?
  • What constitutes a poor post?
  • What constitutes a great post?

I've hosted quite a few Havel Havelim's, and I've read more than my share of blog posts. I see a definite agenda in the ratings by some of those who obviously have nothing better to do than to spend their time giving low numbers when they don't like the message.

As an English teacher I have rubrics to help me mark compositions. And yes, they really help. I also use rubrics for project work. I'll make them up according to what I want to "weigh" more. They can include aesthetics, grammar, vocabulary organization etc.

When I blog, I do take all this into account. The other day when I was walking around, I noticed a terribly tattered flag and photographed it. Then I used it to illustrate The Tattered Flag Flies in Sderot. OK, I admit that I slightly "stretched it" by using a flag flying in Shiloh for a post about Sderot, but it's not a bad post. Many high-ranking posts are just copies of articles, and that includes some of mine. As of this moment, it has a phenomenal 131 points total but a 2 out of 5 average on jblog central. That's political, no doubt. A lot of people are using their limited voting power to knock me down.

Bagel Blogger has a voting system set up at the end of each post to get readers to vote, but that's beyond anything I can do, and I don't' think I should.

Enough kvetching. I have to get ready for Shabbat.


Soccer Dad said...

Carl's also set up voting at his Israel Matzav. I've never done well there. Most of my stuff seems to get automatic 3's.

And I'm also frustrated that even though I registered there, I never received my confirmation e-mail, so I can't participate in the forums or the JIB's. C'est la vie.

muse said...

Your posts are in a different league. You deal with a lot.

I don't think their JIB is going any place. None of our HH crowd has mentioned it to my knowledge; at least the posts about it aren't making it into HH.

L'havdil, it's sort of like when we have a shiur nashim on Shabbat in one of the shuls rather than in someone's house.

Soccer Dad said...

Even my best Jewish/Israel posts only get 3's. And really don't generate a lot of interest. I just stopped checking and then it stopped bothering me.

It used to be that Elder of Ziyon got a tremendous response. Maybe he still does.

Batya said...

I had stopped for a while and then I checked when doing hh.
Would you believe that hh didn't rate 5's?

Anonymous said...

My numbers have gone way down. I was number 9 or 10 at one point, and now I'm not on the list of top-rated blogs at all (it seems only those with more than 1000 votes appear there at all). Easy come, easy go I guess!

Batya said...

Considering that there aren't any objective standards of what consitutes a good, great, or pathetic post, the rankings aren't very serious at all.

They also skew our "hit/visit" numbers, since people read the posts on their page, rather than on our blogs. From the numbers I "see," there are sometimes more people reading my blogs on their site than mine.

Bagel Blogger said...

I couldn't agree with you more Batya.
For me its two seperate issues:
1. The lack of criteria for voting, ie. a rubrick.

2. The willingness of at least a few bloggers to cast 1's and 2's onto peoples posts with out even reading the post.

A test post of mine was created when I updated my stylesheet in Windows Live Writer, its was purely an administrative thing. It consisted of:
This is a 'temporary post cxs234543XXXX' created to update Livewriter
with absolutely no content.
Yet despite it obviously not being a 'normal post' it recieved 55 seperate votes all under 2, most of them 1.
Its not right that people cast such bad votes without even reading a post. It has happened to a lot of blogs of late.

Check out:
Thank you for the consistent vote of 1
14 Dec 2006 by Bagel Blogger

'Sorry about the title, but as the person who keeps voting me 1 point, (no matter the topic or quality of post,) doesn't actually read my posts. ... Just try to space your voting on my posting, so I can feel at least you have read my ...'

I might add until I posted this, I had to my knowledge never recieved a 2, now well half of the '1's have turned into '2's


And the nastiness continues.... Temporary Post Used for Malevolent ...
4 Jan 2007 by Bagel Blogger

'Please, Please, When will the awards be over.'

The administrators are trying to address these issues. I know this because of certain things which have been changed in the php coding, that help reduce malevolent practices.

What it comes down to, is you have to cast a stern glaze over the voting when a very select few bloggers seem almost immune to recieving negative votes.

Now with the upcoming JIB awards this won't work as clearly, everyone has 'low' votes, it seems even the 'evil doers' are attacking each other.

I have used my blog as an example as I have more access to my blog

Visit: [Bagelblogger]

Batya said...

thanks bb
Honestly, this has just totally turned me off the entire JIB business.
The first year I came in dead last in everything, and the second I wasn't even nominated. And now, I won't even check.
Life's too complicated and full for such norishkeit, especially since there aren't any objective criteria.

Jack's Shack said...

The way the JIBs are being run is a joke. Haveil Havalim is far superior.

Your post is good. The question of what makes a good post is worth pondering. Quite subjective really.

muse said...

I'd say that jblog central miss-calculated what it takes to drum up the excitement needed for a good suspenseful jib.

Either another blogger takes over, or it'll just fade away.