Best of Etsy niche - moderator vote to influence initial quality score

Product: Narrative

Hello all,

So back in the day when it was unclear how niches would work, we suggested and bought this niche.  It was intended to be a curated collection of the quirkiest, coolest Etsy offerings.  Without the ability to curate it in any way, it will probably just become a place that Etsy sellers will flood with any and all of their listings, which kills the entire intent of a 'Best of' niche.

I'm here to find a solution to this.

Ideally the moderators would be allowed to curate on this type of niche, obviously.  But if the Team is not willing to make a specific rule for this situation, then this could be solved by giving moderators the ability to vote on how visible an approved piece of content should be, and for this vote to be significant in the initial quality score of a piece that determines its visibility.  This at least would allow the most visible items on the niche to be initially influenced by humans - as we know, this is a shortcut to quality.   Especially in the first moments of a content piece's existence on the network where the algorithms have zero data about the quality of the piece to derive an appropriate outcome from.

The algorithms could be balanced so that if the piece accelerates in popularity in a way that suggests the moderators got it wrong, that the influence of their votes for the piece of content would be scaled back or even erased.  

I think this would be a very good compromise for this problem that the community first raised long ago.

I'd love to hear what the Team and fellow community members think!

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If it's spelled out that the niche is for the coolest, and quirkiest stuff, maybe just let the community voters have at it on these terms? If it doesn't work, then add some moderator input? Just saying 'cause I think it's fun to check things out for outstandingly awesome and/or unusual stuff - and recommend what I think that stuff is by voting and commenting.

Colleen Ryer posted:

If it's spelled out that the niche is for the coolest, and quirkiest stuff, maybe just let the community voters have at it on these terms? If it doesn't work, then add some moderator input? Just saying 'cause I think it's fun to check things out for outstandingly awesome and/or unusual stuff - and recommend what I think that stuff is by voting and commenting.

I think that approach can work on a slow niche.

But we all hope these niches will become bustling, which will mean potentially 10, 20, or even 30 new submissions per day, maybe more.  If there is no initial quality data, and Etsy sellers have discovered the niche and are simply using it as a place to try to advertise their wares, regardless of whether there's anything special about them or not, then the feed of the niche is not going to be considered valuable.  It will just be a spam channel.

I actually think all niches would benefit immensely from moderator quality votes having some degree of influence on the initial positioning in the visibility queue because all niches can suffer from spamming of one type or another.

The great thing about this solution is the team can adjust and readjust the weight of the moderator votes, to find the sweet spot where ever content piece gets a chance, but the algorithms at least start their classification of the content with some meaningful data.

So @MichelleG pointed out that people would probably get upset about the moderator votes influencing the visibility of their posts...  Good point.

She also pointed out that if moderators immediately liked a post, that post would have an advantage over posts with no likes.

This is a great start, and I think it would be nice for the moderator workflow to allow them to like a post at the same time they are approving it.  Otherwise their time will be wasted having to navigate to the post itself to like it...

@Malkazoid, You could put in a rule about Etsy sellers not submitting their own stuff, but that's really unenforceable, especially since they could just start a second account to get around that rule.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure there's a way to make the niche work as intended with what we know now about how niches will work. It's probably only going to be possible with a Best of Etsy publication, when those are introduced.

You could make a rule (mostly honor system) where no one is allowed to submit more than one item from a given Etsy seller in a single calendar week. But you may end up deciding that a Publication is the only way to do things properly, and edit the name/description of the niche version to be something a little less quality-oriented. (e.g. "Share your favorite Etsy finds!" which is the more democratic version of what you wish to curate.)

Christina Gleason posted:

@Malkazoid, You could put in a rule about Etsy sellers not submitting their own stuff, but that's really unenforceable, especially since they could just start a second account to get around that rule.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure there's a way to make the niche work as intended with what we know now about how niches will work. It's probably only going to be possible with a Best of Etsy publication, when those are introduced.

You could make a rule (mostly honor system) where no one is allowed to submit more than one item from a given Etsy seller in a single calendar week. But you may end up deciding that a Publication is the only way to do things properly, and edit the name/description of the niche version to be something a little less quality-oriented. (e.g. "Share your favorite Etsy finds!" which is the more democratic version of what you wish to curate.)

 

 @Christina Gleason, I think your conclusion is the bottom line, if the niche ends up not being able to be curated in any way, even indirect.

For now, I'll instruct moderators that they should 'like' submissions they approve if they feel they fulfill one of the criteria of originality, quirkiness, and/or exceptional craftsmanship.  That will at least introduce a small dose of curation.

How about this...

Perhaps adjust your description a bit, that you put out weekly thematic calls for the best of etsy. Such as

week 1: show us the best ceramic mug

Week 2 Show us the best handmade necklace.

Week 3 Show us the best hand made baby outfit in the colour yellow.

etc.

IN this way you can reject tags that are not of this weekly theme, and you are finding a loophole to curate still.

 

And clearly until a call comes up that you have matching product for, you are not just shamelessly self-promoting.

By the way...I am an Esty seller, and buyer....so i will definitely be interested in engaging this community.

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