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article/author ratings/reputations (was Re: pseudonyms & list health)


Futplex sez:
> A reviewer named Susan Granger, for example, is known to me as a person who 
> routinely lauds lousy movies. Thus it's simple for me to ignore her positive
> recommendations (I've yet to see a negative review from her). In fact, when
> I observe that a new film prominently features her seal of approval in its 
> advertising, I take that fact as an indication of the lack of praise from
> more discriminating reviewers. So a nominal "positive" credential may be
> interpreted as an implicit negative credential, depending upon context.
> OTOH, if I only give digital thumbs-up to a couple of people on the list,
> those who consider me a reputable appraiser-of-cpunks should find the
> information relatively useful. I'm sure I can manage to be a harsher critic
> than your 2nd-grade teacher :}  Using e.g. a single 1-10 scale would be
> highly practical for such purposes, IMHO.

There are people working on an extension of UseNet to allow each reader to
publish ratings which propagate in the same way that articles do.  These
ratings can be of specific articles, of threads or of authors.  Your
newsreaders can rank the articles and present them to you in
highest-to-lowest ranked order, or kill all those below a certain mark, or
some such.

The heuristic that the researchers originally started with was "if I agreed 
with so-and-so in the past then I'll probably agree with him again."  
(Personally I would rather have some degree of manual control over my 
ratings-weightings.  My good friends automatically get more weight than 
people I don't know, regardless of how much our ratings coincide.  
Similarly I might want to downgrade certain net.assholes just out of a 
sense of justice, even if they recommend good articles usually.  :-) )

Unfortunately I have lost the URL for this wonderful experiment.  Hopefully
the fruits of their labors will become publically available soon.  I will
certainly be one of the first to sign up to distribute ratings and to listen
to (some) other people's.


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