Author Topic: Suggestion on future contest rule change  (Read 10734 times)

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Offline AG6QR

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Suggestion on future contest rule change
« on: October 07, 2013, 11:26:46 pm »
I noticed that, after the most recent contest was announced, there has been a minor flood of relatively meaningless posts.  The cynic in me believes that someone created a user id and tried to make posts in order to reach the magic "five posts" count to immediately enter the contest.  It's just too much of a coincidence when I look at one user's posting history of five quick thoughtless posts followed by a contest entry.

I am confident that, as the wise judging panel carefully reviews the posts to see if they meet the stated criteria of being useful, such an attempt to subvert the spirit of the contest rules would not pass muster.  But even though I think the strategy won't work to help win the contest, it's still annoying for the clutter it produces on the boards.

Here's a gentle suggestion:  In order to reduce future clutter, perhaps the next contest should make a minor clarification to the rules, changing it to something like, "You must have made five useful posts prior to the announcement date of the contest".

I know my suggestion isn't perfect.  It would not necessarily be bad if a contest motivates someone to post five genuinely useful contributions after the contest starts.  What is bad is when someone reads the rules and somehow believes the "five posts" criteria can be met by quickly throwing out five thoughtless context-free one-line posts that don't contribute much except clutter.  Maybe Dave, in his no-nonsense style, can make the point clear via some alternate rephrasing of the rules.

Of course, Dave gets to make the rules, and I appreciate his generosity however he wants to run any contests.
 

Offline kizzap

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2013, 01:13:09 am »
The problem with your idea is that the contests are driven to bring more people to the forum, plain and simple. What you suggest is not a traffic generator but more a reward for people who are already supporting Dave.

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Offline xrunner

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2013, 01:19:46 am »
The problem with requiring 5 "quality" posts is clear: Only a human being can make that determination. If he gets hundreds of new members trying to make "quality" posts, every single new member trying to get into the contest will have to have their posts examined by a human being for "quality".

I don't know about anyone else here, but trying to look at hundreds of new member's posts for "quality" ain't exactly my idea of a good time.  :--
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Offline walshms

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2013, 01:34:19 am »
+1.  Can't possibly do that, there aren't enough hours in a day.

At some point, Dave will need help.  When he does, he'll ask for it.
 

alm

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2013, 01:34:39 am »
Dave will just pick a winner at random, and only then check the number of posts. That's how he did it the last time. If the first 'winner' fails the test, then he can just pick another one. It sucks that the forum is being flooded with posts of questionable value in the mean time, though.
 

Offline GeoffS

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2013, 01:36:44 am »

I don't know about anyone else here, but trying to look at hundreds of new member's posts for "quality" ain't exactly my idea of a good time.  :--

It's what moderators live for!  :)
 

Offline xrunner

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2013, 01:42:25 am »
Dave will just pick a winner at random, and only then check the number of posts. That's how he did it the last time. If the first 'winner' fails the test, then he can just pick another one. It sucks that the forum is being flooded with posts of questionable value in the mean time, though.

As you indicated, the flaw is that all the other new members wanting in on the contest are flooding the forum with trivial posts. Only one can win, yet many of the rest post useless threads.

If you want new members, and want to offer a reward such as entering a contest, then just let people join and enter. Just let the chips fall where they may. If they like the forum they will contribute. If not, they won't, even if they win a contest.
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Offline EEVblog

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2013, 01:45:43 am »
Dave will just pick a winner at random, and only then check the number of posts. That's how he did it the last time.

Yes, only need to check the winners.
Fact is there has been relatively little flooding the forum with crap posts in the scheme of things.
It only stands out because it's more than usual and people are looking for it.

The problem is, as always, I can't please everyone.
I've got people complaining that I'm not rewarding the loyal youtube viewers, or podcast viewers, or blog viewers and if I do that I'll get complaints I'm not rewarding the loyal forum users etc
Then I should be having a Supporters only contest etc.
 

Offline GeorgeHahn

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2013, 01:46:20 am »
As someone who's been thinking about coming here for a while and finally did due to the contest, I agree with this.

There's an easy (perhaps slightly unethical?) solution: don't talk about the 5 post minimum. The contest is enough to get people to sign up, you can judge them after that if their name is drawn. If they come here and never post? Well, that's 5 spam posts nobody ever had to deal with. Everyone saves time!
 

Offline AG6QR

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2013, 02:48:23 am »
Yes, only need to check the winners.
Fact is there has been relatively little flooding the forum with crap posts in the scheme of things.
It only stands out because it's more than usual and people are looking for it.

The problem is, as always, I can't please everyone.

I agree with all those points, especially the last one.

Though, in the grand scheme of things, realize that you're pleasing quite a lot of people.  Even considering those who would prefer that a minor thing or two be slightly changed.  You're only hearing their suggestions because they like what's going on here enough to stick around and make suggestions.
 

alm

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2013, 02:57:22 am »
Fact is there has been relatively little flooding the forum with crap posts in the scheme of things.
It only stands out because it's more than usual and people are looking for it.
My impression is that people are scouring the forum looking for threads they can contribute to. Much more than usually, when people just skim the posts. This leads to people digging up old threads without having something important to add, replying without reading the thread or even without reading the topic title. I don't think this behavior is common if there's no contest, since there's no strong incentive to want to post. People will just refrain from posting and come back later. The vague deadline for the contest basically forces people to produce five posts as fast as possible. I admit that I don't have any quantitative data to back this up.

The problem is, as always, I can't please everyone.
I've got people complaining that I'm not rewarding the loyal youtube viewers, or podcast viewers, or blog viewers and if I do that I'll get complaints I'm not rewarding the loyal forum users etc
Then I should be having a Supporters only contest etc.
The who you should reward debate will never end, but you should focus on what's good for the forum community. At least in my opinion reading the forum is significantly less pleasant when contests are going on due to the lower signal to noise ratio. This pain may be worth it if a contest produces enough members that keep posting. If people just register for the contest and don't come back until the next context then you should change the rules for the next contest. I think you've done at least two of these contests before, so with a little scripting (find members with less than 10 posts at the time they posted in the contest thread and figure out how many have more than 25 posts now) you should be able to get this information.
 

Online BravoV

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #11 on: October 08, 2013, 04:56:25 am »
This leads to people

digging up old threads without having something important to add,

replying without reading the thread

 or even without reading the topic title
:-DD

and worst .. cursing Dave of the 5 posts rule as to add post count
He realized his mistake, but its too late cause me and other member already quoted his deleted post  >:D

My impression as well, and I think this time, the junk posts like above are a lot more and more intensified than previous contest.  :palm:
« Last Edit: October 08, 2013, 05:00:28 am by BravoV »
 

Offline magnus0re

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #12 on: October 08, 2013, 10:19:33 am »
I am one of those who signed up because of the recent contest. I've been lurking around a lot, but never signed up. So this is my sixth post.
Personally, I think that I have done a decent job of contributing to the forum in my 5 previous posts. And I try not to create junk posts.

I think the goal of the contest rule is twofold: to make more people post and to get new forum contributors.
If so, it has succeeded, hands down.

The forum SNR is horrible sometimes. I believe that it can be much better with a different layout, denying people a chance to win the lottery shouldn't be used as a reason to clean up the forum. As for now I think there is too few subforums. And I've yet to see a sticky (or sub) collecting good posts.

my two cents
 

Offline stempile

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2013, 04:35:45 pm »
I was lurking around too, had created an account a few months back.  I had plans to post, just never had.  I have been active on several other forums.  The challenge now is that there are so many great communities, how do you decided where to add content and where to consume content?

Also I have a blog on life support because I update to forums.  Sometimes I wonder if I should write the blog first, then CC the content info forums?  Google would like surface that pretty quickly.  Is there value in doing that? Perhaps.  Oh and articles in publications - when to submit there vs leaving it in forums?

Good thing, we have lots of choices!  Bad thing, we have lots of choices...

The contest was a motivation for me to start posting, hope I pass the quality litmus test.
 

Offline smoothtalker

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #14 on: October 08, 2013, 04:39:20 pm »
While "quality post" being a criteria is reasonable. the definition of quality post is subjective.

I guess a lot of people are following dave on the youtube channel but have never signed up a forum account. After seeing the contest video they are very keen to participate. I admit i'm one of them.

we should understand although it's not very fair if they simply join and spam post, but they are still genuine supporters of dave. It's a dilemma
 

Offline Bored@Work

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2013, 06:12:24 pm »
While "quality post" being a criteria is reasonable. the definition of quality post is subjective.

I guess a lot of people are following dave on the youtube channel but have never signed up a forum account. After seeing the contest video they are very keen to participate. I admit i'm one of them.

we should understand although it's not very fair if they simply join and spam post, but they are still genuine supporters of dave. It's a dilemma

Seeing you, yes, you digging up a nine month old, long dead thread https://www.eevblog.com/forum/contests/international-contest/msg305729/#msg305729 just to post some junk, you should better not talk about quality posts.
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Offline TinkeringSteve

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2013, 08:36:17 pm »
The problem with requiring 5 "quality" posts is clear: Only a human being can make that determination. If he gets hundreds of new members trying to make "quality" posts, every single new member trying to get into the contest will have to have their posts examined by a human being for "quality".

I don't know about anyone else here, but trying to look at hundreds of new member's posts for "quality" ain't exactly my idea of a good time.  :--

If he does the following, the work load is much reduced, especially because of the randomness in picking over the whole set, making it very unlikely having to check many frauds, assuming that there will be a lot less frauds than honest posters:
Code: [Select]
while NOT clearWinnerFound
    pw = pick_potential_winner_by_random( setOfAllPosts );
    if eligible( pw ) clearWinnerFound = true;
 

Offline smoothtalker

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2013, 08:44:33 pm »
While "quality post" being a criteria is reasonable. the definition of quality post is subjective.

I guess a lot of people are following dave on the youtube channel but have never signed up a forum account. After seeing the contest video they are very keen to participate. I admit i'm one of them.

we should understand although it's not very fair if they simply join and spam post, but they are still genuine supporters of dave. It's a dilemma

Seeing you, yes, you digging up a nine month old, long dead thread https://www.eevblog.com/forum/contests/international-contest/msg305729/#msg305729 just to post some junk, you should better not talk about quality posts.

LoL What bullshit are you saying? 9 months!? You dreaming? that thread was just below this. What I did was simply exploring the forum and when i saw that i posted my thoughts. Who cares about the dates, I was not even aware of it.

Everyone has to start somewhere. If EEV forum is full of people like you I will stay away and join other forums. You should really go pick on those cheapskates trying to win contest.

Don't be jealous. I can understand your ego, old guards feeling threatened by newbie.  :-DD
« Last Edit: October 08, 2013, 08:58:50 pm by smoothtalker »
 

Offline tsmith35

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #18 on: October 08, 2013, 10:17:45 pm »
Here's a gentle suggestion:  In order to reduce future clutter, perhaps the next contest should make a minor clarification to the rules, changing it to something like, "You must have made five useful posts prior to the announcement date of the contest".

Actually, that's exactly the technique that a few forums I frequent handle contests. You have to have your posts in *before* the contest starts. This simple rule avoids the "hey, so-and-so is really cool" kinds of posts used for building up post count.
 

Offline Mr Smiley

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #19 on: October 08, 2013, 10:50:24 pm »
Hi all,

I said similar here, post #8

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/what-is-the-555-timer-schematics-for-38khz/msg304427/#msg304427

Quote
"
I noticed that there was a lot of new low count posts trying to get past the required minimum regarding the competition. Well there are, but assumed people were just joining to get into the comp.

Then i thought I’d check something  :-/O

This guy registered on 1st May according to his profile, so he has been around and not just registered.

Perhaps Dave should put a registered with minimum positive posts before competition was announced clause.  :-//

 :)
"

but was shot down by  Wytnucls with;

Quote
"
What for? The idea behind the competition is to bring in new members, not to reward long term members.
"
 

  :(

 :)
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Offline tsmith35

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #20 on: October 08, 2013, 11:00:29 pm »
Maybe they can keep everyone happy...

Set up a new board called "My 5 posts" and let the new folks go to town. It will remove the mental anguish that each poster goes through while they're trying to figure out how to come up with something that doesn't look like a junk post, and any posts that are made on the new board can be ignored as being purely junk. :)

Kills 2 birds with one stone (not that anyone would want to) by getting new members to join and get used to posting without any junk.
 

Offline Mr Smiley

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #21 on: October 08, 2013, 11:08:00 pm »
Some of these new posters ARE posting positive questions and answers and a lot of them registered way before the comp was announced; like yourself  :-+

If we stuck you into a 'don't read this thread cos it's all rubbish' and you posted a positive question/answer would you be happy  :--

And if you posted your first post today and you were stuck into a 'this is a crap thread' would you come back tomorrow?

 :)
« Last Edit: October 08, 2013, 11:10:51 pm by Mr Smiley »
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Offline tsmith35

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #22 on: October 08, 2013, 11:17:02 pm »
:)
Just kidding around a bit... :) seemed like a way to make everyone happy.
 

Offline Napalm2002

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Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #23 on: October 09, 2013, 01:26:09 am »
How about a thank you Dave. And thanks for opening my eyes to this really cool and interesting blog. And if I win I will
Be thankful, no matter what!


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Offline Greyersting

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Re: Suggestion on future contest rule change
« Reply #24 on: October 09, 2013, 02:56:46 am »
I joined after seeing the contest video but mainly because I didn't know there was a forum until then.
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