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margeryred's avatar

Fluther community plays favorites?

Asked by margeryred (289 points ) June 10th, 2008

Do you think that the members of Fluther play favorites when giving feed back? “great answer”...etc.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

34 Answers

margeryred's avatar

I just join fluther on the recommendation of a great friend. I have felt that this premise is very good and could work. However, I have noticed lately that there are members with over 1000 “great answer” feed back, but they are writing drivel.

Is there a club you need to belong to to get your answers validated? Do the members who have been here a long time gang up on the newbies? Do the members who have been here a long time give credit to responses that aren’t worthy?

mzgator's avatar

I have been here since last July. I think that for the most part people are fair giving great answers. Each of us have different opinions. What is a great answer to me may not be for someone else. Fluther is a great place for learning new things, exposing yourself to different ideas and ways of looking at things and doing things differently. I will also say that I have found this group to be a great source of support for those in need. It’s nice to know you have a large group of online friends to turn to when you need it. By the way…thanks guys!

Allie's avatar

I don’t think it necessarily depends on who is answering the question as opposed to how you answer the question. Also, the more questions you answer makes a difference (assuming you don’t supply bogus answers). As of now, you’ve only answered 29 questions. Answer more and you might get more “great answers.”

jrpowell's avatar

Of course. Keep in mind that some of us frequent the chat room and use AIM to talk outside of Fluther. I have the phone numbers of a few people. There a few cliques around here. But it doesn’t really seem to effect things very much.

But there is a limit on how many points you can give to users. I have a long list of people that have already received the maximum number from me. I don’t bother giving them great answers anymore. Unless the reply is really awesome.

And I am often guilty of giving points to new users even when their response isn’t really that helpful. Sort of a “The first hit is free” thing.

MisterBlueSky85's avatar

I feel like I’m still pretty new here, and I’ve had some answers that have gotten GA’ed four or five times. I’ve also found that there are some members who consistently write well-developed and thought-provoking responses and deserve positive feedback for it.

If anything, we’re not very good at GQing new members. I feel like the old members are sometimes more rewarded for their good questions than newbies. I think I need to be better about that, too.

tekn0lust's avatar

I think you are spot on and IMO lurve has no real merit.

I have seen so many threads of discussion that involve no Answers simple back and forth banter where the participants just ring each other up as great answer after great answer.

I know that the admins have placed lurve limts, but lurve still has no real meaning when it’s tainted like this.

To me it’s one of the disappointing features of fluther.

And yes established members do gang up on new members. Two people I recommended fluther to left quickly after joining for just that reason. And they had the benefit of my telling them to be sure to stick to the rules and observe before getting into it.

Breefield's avatar

@tekn0lust – I think that without the lurve Fluther wouldn’t be what it is, don’t completely write it off.

robmandu's avatar

People will get ganged up on for proselytizing and trying to engender their viewpoints on the Collective. (Not saying that’s what happened to @tekn0lust’s friends, nor even that it should… just an observation… and something I’ve noticed that seems to happen to the neophytes more often as the established members are better at being subtle about it ;-).

The only guideline for awarding lurve is if you liked the Answer/Question. That’s it. Subjective, yes… and hence less than perfect in many ways. But overall, it’s fine.

Don’t get so hung up on the lurve.

Dog's avatar

I like the Lurve- it is a high-5 and since there are limits to how much one person can give another any “club” would not taint the overall lurve much.

shilolo's avatar

I disagree with the notion that new members are ganged up on. It sounds like Margeryred is insinuating that there is some nefarious plot to artificially inflate some users’ lurve points. Why that would happen is unclear. There is nothing tangible to be gained by more lurve. Personally, I feel that I am very frugal with how I give out lurve, and only do so if I feel someone has really crafted a good question or answer, irrespective of their “standing” in the community.

As for me, I joined at exactly the same time as margeryred (we are separated by one day). So, I was (and frankly still am) a very new user (have been here less than 6 weeks). However, I have answered 10 times more questions, and make it a point to either write funny responses to funny questions, or well crafted responses (with citations) to more serious questions.

playthebanjo's avatar

I too joined about the same time as margeryred and have experienced more lurve. Most of the lurve comes from great answers. If you don’t answer the questions, you won’t get the lurve. It has little to do with people that have been here longer. I find that even my dumb assed sarcastic remarks are loved by someone. If you answer questions, the lurve will come. IT IS ALL ABOUT PARTICIPATION.

jlelandg's avatar

I came in a couple of weeks ago, and I’ve experienced little hate from the newer members. I take my lurve somewhat seriously and when I answer I usually get at least 1 great answer and if my answer is good I get two or three. My first answer I caught lightning in a bottle and got like half of my points from it.

Melonking's avatar

Well I know that I will almost never give great answer to endless long answers I don’t have time to read.

I am verrrrryyy spairing when it comes to giving out lurve.

jrpowell's avatar

And keep in mind that most Lurve comes from answers. If you only ask questions you shouldn’t expect much. I might be the only person that pays attention to this. If you only ask questions and don’t give anything back don’t expect anything from me.

tekn0lust's avatar

bree: I agree that lurve is something that makes fluther what it is.

But look at the link to award lurve. It says “Great Answer” not good discussion or witty comment or high-five.

There are no checks and balances to lurve, without them it’s a meaningless number.

I think lurve ought to be awarded to the best answer to a question based upon community input.

This whole thread point to one of several big issues fluther has to address in the long run or it will crumble.

robmandu's avatar

ahh @teckn0lust, you’re concerned about the semantics of the thing.

Recently, Fluther attempted to hilite the “Great Answer” link in red for those quips that the querent awarded a GA for. The reviews from the Collective on that were mixed. It seemed to put an undue burden on the querent and folks worried it would lead to lurve inflation.

People also didn’t like the idea of a monthly best answer award.

Lurve is not an exact science. It’s free (as in beer) and meant to be shared.

Let your lurve go.

Dog's avatar

I do not think this thread will cause Fluther to crumble.

Lurve is just a kudo.

MisterBlueSky85's avatar

tekn0lust: Isn’t a witty comment sometimes a great answer? Isn’t a response that generates great discussion sometimes a great answer? I disagree when you say witty comments and thought-provoking answers can’t be great answers. Obviously it depends on the topic, but these things can be very healthy for Fluther – they keep discussion alive and fun. That’s the point, right?

I don’t think Lurve is meaningless, either. You’re right, though, when you say it doesn’t mean a whole lot. What IS Lurve? It’s a measure of how positively you’ve contributed to Fluther in your stay here, as judged by other members. The problem is more Lurve doesn’t mean you’re a better member necessarily – maybe you’ve just been here longer, or maybe you’ve exploited the system in some way, or maybe you’re just more likable. Usually, though, Lurve is a simple measure of how much a member positively contributed here, and I wouldn’t want to revise the system and sacrifice it’s fun. I lurve Lurve. :)

wildflower's avatar

I really don’t think it’s a case of playing favorites, however, since we’re all individuals with different opinions, experiences, views, expertise…..even sense of humor, it’s only to be expected that some strike a chord with you more than others, quite simply because you agree on certain things, appreciate their approach to wording a response or what they bring to the discussion .
As far as building up a score of lurve is concerned, I think Shilolo is right: it’s all to do with how much you participate.
I signed up for Fluther just over 2 months ago, but have already participated in over 1200 threads (yes I know, I don’t have a life – but I do blame the 2 weeks of vacation for some of it). If I try to be as objective as I can about my own posts, I would say I have posted everything from inappropriate answers, ridiculous answers, to interesting and even helpful answers and different people appreciate different types of answers – I’ve received lurve for all of those categories – and I’ve given lurve to all of those categories (and more) myself.
Bottom line: Fluther is used by individuals from all walks of life, with all sorts of views, personalities and tastes. It’s not a race, it’s a collective and there is room for everyone, but you have to expect controversial views will spark a reaction – on Fluther, just as anywhere else.

robmandu's avatar

< < awards lurve to @wildflower… but while the GA shows up, her lurve score doesn’t increase as I’ve lurved her too much.

< < awards lurve to @dog… because I like his icon is a “deer” and his name is “Dog”... GA count and lurve score both increase.

wildflower's avatar

Look at that! I got 3 GA’s for that post, but my score didn’t increase once! Guess I’ve already struck a chord a few times with some of my fellow jellies

Just now, robmandu’s answer made me laugh – and it is very apropos, so I GA’d it, but guess there’s already been too much lurve in that direction too!

jrpowell's avatar

I clicked and wildflower didn’t get anything.

robmandu's avatar

@jp, dude, put that thing away… you might just be too free with the lurve.

wildflower's avatar

completely and utterly off-topic (and a good example of the aforementioned inappropriate answers), but jp’s post just reminded me of: “3 words to kill any man’s ego”......and I’m still LOL (literally!!)

andrew's avatar

@tekn0lust: will you PM me about your friends who were turned off? That’s exactly the stuff that makes me nervous.

I think this discussion really touched on the fact that even though we may say we don’t care about the little number next to our name, we do.

margeryred's avatar

This thread has definitely cleared up a bunch! Thanks for everyone and their responses.

You all get GA’s/LURVE FROM ME!!! ;)

DeezerQueue's avatar

Yes, there are people on Fluther who “play favorites.” This link illustrates it very well.

Marina gets GA for “Well said, shilolo!”
Marina gets GA for “@Bulbatron9 First the shoe video and now this fantastic one. Do you have a You Tube videos favorites list I could look at? Thanks so much for both of those.”
Buster gets GA for “sometimes nofx is wrong bulbatron.”
Spendywatson gets GA for “@bulbatron…do you realize you just used $#!+ in place of shit, but typed out fuck? :) The wheat beer must be good.”
Spendywatson gets GA for “no doubt ;) you crack me up”
Spendywatson gets GA for “@ebenezer, how ironic”
Buster gets GA for “i wonder how much a gram of blow cost in singapore. if you smuggle it in without being caught and beaten its got to be an exorbitant price.”
Spendywatson gets GA for “$8.50 just kidding”
bulbatron9 gets GA for “Reread it! I was joking, too! Wait, “little testy”; Turn your head and cough joke goes great with that!”
Shilolo gets GA for “Still confused, but, no problem Glad we got off the capital punishment thread, it was killing me…”
Shilolo gets GA for “No fair editing your responses to look witty. And let me tell you something, I hate that part of the physical exam. That said, if you are ever my patient, you would definitely need the full exam.”

There are, of course, more in there, but I’m looking at the ones that are clearly playing favorites, and they’ll be obvious to everyone. Some of the others are GA’s given for humor, but don’t have anything to do with the question. Humor is an essential part of Fluther, but when GA has been awarded for humor that has strayed so far from the topic, then a person is hard pressed to see why lurve matters at all.

People have a tendency of holding their opinions too closely at times. If someone doesn’t agree with them, whether they have a good argument or not, they can become combative. The idea behind Fluther is to answer questions, not to hold each others’ heads under water until victory is achieved.

One of the answers to a question that I asked was, “None of your business.”

I have also seen other members ganging up on some, as well. My own husband was here twice but decided not to come back because he started reading threads where it appeared that you just had to be good friends with others who appreciated your humor. What’s sad is that he’s worked in addictions for years, was the most successful in his entire region (he now works as a probation officer), and had a lot of positive expertise to offer on the issue. I’m feeling the pangs of favoritism as well.

@shilolo “It sounds like Margeryred is insinuating that there is some nefarious plot to artificially inflate some users’ lurve points.” She didn’t insinuate that. Members have confirmed that it happens, and I have confirmed it by providing solid examples, in just one thread. When you make statements like that you only stir the pot.

@johnpowell “There a few cliques around here. But it doesn’t really seem to effect things very much.” It does, but most don’t say anything about it and try not to let it affect them.

syz's avatar

What does it matter?

Hopefully you’ve joined Fluther to use it as a resource and to be a resource for information and discussion. Yes, it’s nice to get the feedback of lurve, but really, what does it matter?

This is not a contest. There are no prizes.

If you just joined Fluther and are so clearly unhappy already, then perhaps this is not the site that you were looking for.

shilolo's avatar

@Deezer. None of what you pointed to is a “nefarious plot”. I won’t belabor the point, but the thread you linked to was one about capital punishment that devolved into some lighthearted banter, including some witty remarks (many of which you actually have up there as unnecessarily lurved.) Even if some people are far too liberal with how they apportion lurve points, that doesn’t make it a concerted plan by established members. And, how do you interpret these questions from Margeryred from her response to her own question, particularly the last one?

“Is there a club you need to belong to to get your answers validated? Do the members who have been here a long time gang up on the newbies? Do the members who have been here a long time give credit to responses that aren’t worthy?”

The fact is, I agree with syz that really, truly, what does it matter? If the point is to join the group, ask questions and provide your insight, how much ego stroking is necessary after that? I suspect some people get upset that their answers don’t receive a GA, but often that has nothing to do with popularity and more to do with the quality of their answers.

DeezerQueue's avatar

@shilolo It wasn’t me who suggested that it was a nefarious plot, I was quoting you, in fact. No one believes that it exists, and why you suggested it is beyond my comprehension. And there was really no need for you to tell me what the thread was about. I believe that if I was intelligent to read it, link to it, and use it to support the fact that sometimes GA is given out when it sometimes shouldn’t be, I also knew what the thread was about.

I gave my opinion, and supported it. I don’t feel a need to be validated, and for anyone to suggest that another needs validation is making rather large and unnecessary assumptions.

Why should it matter to you, or anyone, if another person is hung up on lurve or not? I’m not the person who asked the question. But margeryred isn’t the first person to bring it up. I doubt that she’ll be the last. But your response and syz’s response point to what is part of the problem, people find it difficult to remain detached from these issues, you both respond by somehow thinking that I must be a bit of an imbecile to hang around while gaining all of my 1660 lurve and being unhappy while doing it. I think most people who are generally and genuinely unhappy would have left long before the amount of lurve that I have, don’t you?

The point that I am making, is this. Lurve matters to some people and they shouldn’t be penalized for that. Acceptance matters to some people and they shouldn’t be penalized for that, either. We expect everyone to believe and behave exactly the way that we do, but we should all only be behaving within the guidelines, and there’s a lot of room for people to be able to be themselves and give their opinions without being condescended to or insulted, or made to feel that they’re just not welcome.

margeryred's avatar

Give me Lurve or don’t, it ain’t gonna break my heart and it will take more than that to get rid of me!!! LOL
More so I was trying to figure how someone who berates or acts as though others are “not right” when stating their opinion get so much!?!?! ;)
(opinions aren’t debatable, facts are…yes you can try to convince someone to see something different, but the object is not to shove it down their throat!)

squirbel's avatar

Well if it counts for anything, I never give points just because I like people. And I prefer that my dumb quips don’t get any points either :D There are those who give points just because the person[s] they like wrote something, whatever it may be. In the end – it doesn’t matter. The Lurve points are not a grade or something to measure your ability by. They are there simply to assist people who are reading a question to find the most acceptable answer [according to the collective].

Here are the instances where I give points:
– If the question is well written, not previously asked, and has something written in the description.
– If the answer answers the question and makes a valid [even if I don’t agree] point.

I do this in the interest of the random google visitor who found a question and hopped onto Fluther, expecting to find results.

did i ever mention how much i hate seeing poll questions on fluther? wtf is the importance of knowing what people think of this or that, or what is their favorite x, y, or z? ask good questions people!

margeryred's avatar

I kind of disagree @squirbel… when I am reading a person’s comment and I see that they have a higher score it gives credence or credit to their responses…

it is sort of like e-bay, more positive feedback means you can trust the seller/buyer more.

scamp's avatar

@margeryred, you asked above: More so I was trying to figure how someone who berates or acts as though others are “not right” when stating their opinion get so much!?!?! ;)

My guess is that when someone posts a snarky type of answer to another member, it may get lurve because that person stuck their neck out to say something others wished they had the courage to say. For example, if you thought someone was annoying or just plain ridiculous, and wished you could tell them that, you might be glad someone else stepped forward. I think it’s kind of a ‘that’s telling ‘em” kind of lurve.

Also, what seems like drivel to you may be helpful or entertaining to another.

To any newbies who feel they are slow at gaining lurve: Stick with us. As you post, we get to know you better, and the lurve grows. It seemed like it took forever to get my first 100 points, but look at me now! After you are here for a little while and get to know the others, points will not matter so much. You will stop paying so much attention to points and stick around for the sheer joy of fluthering.

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