System Time: 00:05 22 May 2013 - 0 Players Online
BlogShares is the home of the largest human edited blog index in the world. We acheive this index through the voting process. Voting is perhaps the most complex aspect of the game, because there are so many facets to the rules regarding voting. Strictly put, voting is the process of suggesting what categories you thing a blog belongs in.
What IS A Blog?
First, we must consider what is a valid blog to vote one.
Weblogs, called blogs for short, are generally online journals of some sort and can be used for an unlimited range of subjects and purposes.
Blogs run from individual diaries to arms of political campaigns, media programs, and corporations, and from one occasional author to large communities of writers. The totality of weblogs or blog-related web pages is usually called the blogosphere.
The format of blogs varies nearly limitlessly, however, the following must be true for the blog to be considered valid for inclusion in the BlogShares index:
It is difficult to know just what is and what is not a blog suitable for inclusion in BlogShares. For the purposes of this game, blogs must fit the following criteria:
- The blog is authored by a clearly defined blogger, such as:
- a specific individual
- a specific individual posting as another
- parody blogs (fake celebrities)
- blogs written by someone's cat, dog, infant, etc.
- a group of individuals
- a specific organization
- a specific company
- Posts appear in reverse-chronological order, or at the very least, the most recent post appears first.
- Posts are individual and dated.
- Timestamps, while helpful, are not required.
- Individual posts have some sort of permanent URL (permalink) with which to link to them.
- Past posts are available in some sort of archive in the blog.
- Commenting and/or trackback capability is often enabled, but not a requirement.
- Blogs can feature any subject, be personal, non-personal, or business-related, and offer content unique to the blog with each new post.
- Blogs must be human edited. The following do not follow this guideline:
- Blogs posted to by automated scripts
- Blogs that are link or post aggregators
- Blogs that contain only feeds of other blogs.
- Blogs are only the main, 'home' page for the blog, and not:
- link pages
- individual posts
- summary pages
- Blogs must have at least one post in the last six months to remain in the index. In order to be added to the index, there must be at least one one post in the past three months.
These are few special cases or common mistakes made about deciding what is and is not a blog.
- Two sites which are commonly and incorrectly assumed to be non-blogs are About.com and Flickr.
- Flickr category, collections, and group pages are not considered blogs.
- LiveJournal Communities are considered to be blogs, so long as they are publicly readable.
- YouTube user pages are not considered blogs.
- Facebook pages are not considered blogs.
Social Network Blogs
The following are valid social network blogs, and should be added / linked as follows:
- Twitter Blogs
- URL by username. i.e. http://twitter.com/username
- Title is typically "Twitter / username"
- Only public twitter pages are valid for addition. Friends-only are invalid.
- Jaiku Blogs
- URL by username. i.e. http://username.jaiku.com/
- Title is typically "Jaiku : Display Name"
- Only Jaiku's with original content are valid. Those that only aggregate twitter / pownce / etc. posts are not valid.
- Plurk Blogs
- URL by username. i.e. http://www.plurk.com/user/username
- Title is typically "Display Name - Plurk.com", however is configurable by the user, and should be set accordingly.
- Plurk blogs do not properly pick up outgoing links at this time
- Kwippy Blogs
- URL by username, sent items only. i.e. http://www.kwippy.com/username/kwips/
- Title is typically "username's kwips page"
- Brightkite Blogs
- URL by username. i.e. http://brightkite.com/people/username
- Title is typically "Display Name (username) - brightkite.com"
- Tumblr Blogs
- URL by username, i.e. http://username.tumblr.com/
- Title is configured by user, set as displayed.
- Tumblr's must match above blog guidelines, as they are heavily user configurable.
- MeeMi Blogs
- URL by username, i.e. http://www.meemi.com/username
- Title is typically "www.meemi.com/username"
What IS NOT A Blog?
Of course, as we just read, not everything is a blog. Voting on any page that is not a blog is illegal, and may result in a BSEC case. In BlogShares, there are many blogs that are not considered to be blogs, such as the following:
Non Blogs are web pages that do not conform to our definition of what a blog is. Often, they are a result of what was a blog no longer being one.
- Regular webpages.
- Blogs without dated posts.
- Blogs without archives.
- A Blog not posted to in the last six months.
- A 404 (Not Found) error page.
- The blogger indicates that the blog is no longer being maintained or updated.
- Also known as the "Goodbye Cruel World" post.
Inaccessible blogs are blogs that are either unreadable by a portion of the public, or unreadable by the site spiders.
- A Blog you must login to read.
- A Blog that requires a password to read.
- A Blog that requires you to verify your age, sex, location, etc else to read.
- A Blog that requires additional navigation (i.e. 'Click here for blog' links)
- A Blog that requires a specific browser to read.
Spam blogs are artificially created weblog sites which the author uses to promote affiliated websites or to increase the search engine rankings. The purpose of a spam blog can be to increase the PageRank or backlink portfolio of affiliate websites, to artificially inflate paid ad impressions from visitors, and/or use the blog as a link outlet to get new sites indexed. Spam blogs are usually a type of scraper site, where content is often either inauthentic text or merely stolen from other websites. These blogs usually contain a high number of links to sites associated with the spam blog creator which are often disreputable or otherwise useless websites.
Note: Link farms, which contain no content posts, are considered spam. Blogs which link to many, many others do not fall into this category if they contain real content.
- Standard Spam
- Commercial Spam
Forums are websites where users sign up to discuss various topics. Topics may be started by anyone, commented on by anyone, and taken completely off-topic by anyone.
Malware / Spyware
Spyware or Malware blogs are any blogs (or websites) that attempt to install any program on your computer without your consent. These should be considered dangerous, and removed from the index.
If you have found that the blog you are considering voting does not qualify, please report the error.
Additional Criteria For Voting A Blog
Once you are sure that the blog you are going to vote indeed is a blog, there is one more hurdle to cross - and that is, what industries the blog may be appropriately voted into.
Demographic votes are the bloggers location, language, and gender. In order to make a demographic vote, the blog must:
- For the purposes of voting, blogs must contain at least one post in the last six months.
- Languages that the blog is written in may be voted
- If the blog is written in multiple languages, it may be voted into more than one, so long as it is a significant portion of the blog for each language.
- Single quotes, i.e. (Carpe Diem!) are not enough to qualify for a second language.
- If the posts of a blog are written in more than one language (either alternating within the same post, or changing from one post to the next), you may also cast a vote for the multilingual blogs industry, in addition to votes for the individual languages themselves. So, for example, if a blog consists of some posts written in French, and some written in Swahili, you can cast three accurate votes: French, Swahili, multilingual blogs.
- Explicitly state the gender of the blogger.
- Photos are not enough.
- The name of the blogger is not enough.
- The blogger refering to him or herself is sufficient.
- Special Case: if the blogger refers to themselves as one gender, but the photo clearly shows the other, only the gender the blogger identifies with is applicable.
- In some languages, e.g. Spanish, Portuguese and others, the blogger's gender may be obvious from certain grammatical endings used in the blogger's writing. In such cases, if you can identify them, a vote for the correct gender is justified, but you should be aware that some moderators may not be able to recognise these subtle indications and thus there is a risk that your vote, though correct, may be moderated negatively.
- Explicitly state their location.
- Photos of places you recognize are not enough for a vote.
- You personally knowing the blogger (or it being your own blog) is not enough vote.
- Demographic location votes may be "up-voted"
- i.e. a blogger in 'Pittsburgh' may also be voted into 'Pennsylvania', 'USA', and 'Americas'
- Demographic votes may be used as content votes - see the next section.
- Multiple Bloggers
- If a blog is written by more than one blogger, you may also cast a vote for the co-operative/team blogs industry, in addition to votes for the individual genders of the bloggers. So, for example, if a blog is written by three bloggers, of whom two are female and one is male, you can cast three accurate votes: female, male, co-operative/team blogs.
- Similarly, you can also vote the locations of the bloggers in a co-operative/team blog. If the blog has three regular contributors who live in Miami, Berlin and London (UK), you can vote Miami, Florida, USA, Americas, Berlin, Germany, Europe, London, England and UK.
- However, it is important to note that for a co-operative/team blogs vote to be accurate, more than one blogger must post on the blog regularly. Having multiple contributors listed in the sidebar or on the about page is not sufficient. At least two contributors must actually post regularly in order for a blog to qualify for this industry. Of course, only regular contributors should be included when voting place and gender demographics.
Content votes are those based on the actual content of the blog. For instance, most Flickr blogs qualify for a 'Photoblogs' vote. In order to make content votes, the blog must:
- Contain at least five posts in the last six months.
- Contain significant content related to the industry you wish to vote.
- Content votes may be "voted-up" only if the parent industries are appropriate for the blog.
Significant contant is a tricky definition. While there is not a specific number of posts that define what is significant or not, it can be best summed up as follows:
If I were browsing the index in search of blogs about <industry name and description>, would I find this blog useful?
Why Should I Vote?
The first, and most important reason you should vote is that it helps to keep the worlds largest human-edited index of blogs current, accurate, and well categorized. However, since this is a game of making money and personal gain, you may be asking: "What is in it for me?"
- New Votes (un-voted blogs, or blogs not already in the industry you are voting)
- New votes will increase your karma by one for each correct vote (after it's moderated).
- New votes will give a reward in chips, based on how many levels deep an industry is. i.e.
- An "English" vote (1st level, language demographic) will give you 5 Chips
- A "Pittsburgh" vote (4th level, place demographic) will give you 20 Chips
- Each level deeper increases the chip reward by 5 chips.
- Some industries do not currently reward karma.
- Duplicate votes (blogs already in that industry)
- Moderating Votes
- Incorrect votes
Levels of Voting
There are a number of levels of voting you may see in vote histories - they are:
- +/- 1 : New voter votes (votes by players with less than 750 karma)
- These votes are worth 1 point each. It takes a minimum of 2 points for a blog to recognize the specific Industry, so this is an opportunity for new voters to get acquainted with the voting system without being in a position to skew the index.
- +/- 3 : Moderator votes (votes by players with more than 750 karma)
- These votes are worth 3 points. Anyone who has reached 750 Karma will automatically have votes worth 3 points. This makes a blog instantly recognize the Industry it has been voted into and causes it to start producing ideas.
- +/- 5 : Moderation votes (votes reviewed by a moderator on a moderation screen) / Owner votes (votes cast by a user that has claimed the blog)
- Moderator and Owner votes are both worth 5 points. Owners should note that they are expected to vote their own blogs accurately, just like votes for any other listing. Moderators visit the moderation tool and decide whether or not votes are appropriate. Owners simply have more power over the categorization of their own blog as they are assumed to know the content better than anyone else.
- +/- 10 : Admin / Index Manager "corrective" votes.
- Admin and IM votes have the most power. They are worth 10 points each. It is this way because they have the ultimate say as to whether or not a vote is correct. This allows them to erase not only a bad vote, but a bad moderation as well.
A blog must have at least 2 points voted for an industry in order to be included in it.
Common Voting Mistakes
The BlogShares index is large and contains industries for every topic you can imagine (and then some). As such, there can be confusion as to what may seem to be quite basic votes. This section will examine some of the more common voting mistakes and point you in the right direction to enable you to vote more accurately.
- "Photography" and "Digital Photography" are mis-voted when the vote should be for "Photoblogs." This arises as some inexperienced voters have not noted that the "Photography" and "Digital Photography" industries must contain content about those topics whilst "Photoblogs" are blogs that contain myriad images (not necessarily photographs).
- A blogger's occupation is not considered an accurate industry unless the blogger blogs about their occupation. In the past, "Student" was an exception to this rule - this is no longer the case.
- "Asian Teens" is only accurate for Teens who live in Asia: a 15 year-old Asian living in Amsterdam blogging about soccer does not belong in this industry.
- "Meme" is only accurate for blogs that discuss Memes, not for blogs that merely contain Memes, even if Memes are the only content of the blog.
- "Society" is only accurate for blogs that discuss Society as a construct.
- "Blogosphere" is only accurate for blogs that discuss the blogosphere as a whole, particularly trends and developments in the world of blogs and blogging. It is not an accurate vote for all co-operative/team blogs, or for all multilingual blogs, even though it is the parent industry for these two sub-industries.
- "Co-operative/Team Blogs" is only an accurate vote if the blog actually has more than one blogger who blogs regularly. Many blogs contain "Contributors" lists with more than one blogger listed but closer examination of the blog reveals that there is but one blogger who posts on the blog. When voting Places sub-industries be careful to ensure that the bloggers whose locations you vote are regular contributors.
If You Make A Mistake
If you do make a mistake in voting, do not fret. Instead, head over to how to Correct Your Mistake.
So, How do I vote?
First, open the voting window by clicking on the "Vote for which Industry the blog belong to" link.
You will see something like this:
For a detailed step-by-step process, take a look at: