Reply by justahobby

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Posted on A convention for the "stars" on the review

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19 posts in 2600 days

#1 posted 07-29-2012 09:57 AM

A consistent point of reference has always been the problem in reviews. I fall more or less with WhoMe:

1 – this product should not even have been manufatured
2 – you can make it work correctly if you want to put the time in, not comfortable to use out of box
3 – decent quality / product value (for price?)
4 – this is worth buying (functionally/ task performance)
5 – stands out among field of peers, exceptional quality, all the details thought of

Although price is often a bracketing (not really defining, but that is a semantic argument for another time) factor, I find it difficult to bring price into the mix, as I know my values do not necessarily match those of others. I feel reviews should always include price paid so the reivew and any rating can focus on how the product functions and affects the user’s work flow (or just plain enjoyment of the task, for us hobbiests). In this framework, a product is rated and reviewed on function and quality, and each individual reader can then assign ‘value’ to the product based on price and translating the reviewers experience to what is likely to be their own with the product. I find when I look at something in terms of ‘expectations’, I bring price into the mix before I have even used the product, and this is too personal for doing a review.

Maybe reviewers could only write the copy, other readers assign a ‘star’ rating based on what they interpret from the reivew: sort of a ‘meta’ rating or average based on multiple readings of each reivew. I’ve never seen this done before, and it wouldn’t be without ways to game the system, so it would require coding. Or maybe we could just use multiple rating categories: quality, comfort/ fit and finish, price/ value, ease of use, et cetera.

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