|June 10, 2007 at 6:32 pm #294228|
I wish to announce my candidacy for the position of Minister of Film Ratings. If elected, I would endeavor to implement the following system:
Such a system would enable the entire community some level of participation in the Directory and provide a more meaningful representation of a film’s worthiness of being viewed –meaningful because there will be vastly more opinions expressed and because those opinions will accurately represent the feelings of the rater.
As a final note, once the system is implemented, the position of Minister of Film Ratings would be obviated, further simplifying site operations.
|June 10, 2007 at 7:22 pm #294252|
|June 10, 2007 at 7:37 pm #294264|
I fully support the intention to objectify the rating system, but I think there is a risk of over simplification.
In addition to this, giving all members the ability to rate could, and I suspect would, degrade the ratings to something akin to the YouTube star rating system. That would not be a good thing.
|June 10, 2007 at 7:44 pm #294267|
I would vote for you if it weren’t for the member thing, yes.
|June 10, 2007 at 7:53 pm #294274|
I agree that this is over-simplifying it. From the standpoint of viewers looking for a good film to watch, however, I think that it might be nice to include an overall (not an average) rating like what you’ve suggested.
|June 10, 2007 at 9:26 pm #294346|
I am completely against removing the ratings for the different aspects of filmmaking. I’m always using those ratings for searches, and I think the value of the search function would be significantly diminished if they were removed.
Might I recommend leaving the current system as is for patrons, but implementing the system you’ve highlighted in addition to it?
|June 10, 2007 at 9:27 pm #294348|
Indeed, a valid point and I fully agree that we should promote patronage of the site; however, I have to believe there are more effective ways of doing so than restricting participation in the rating of films. How much of an incentive is film rating to becoming a Patron? If the Directory is to be a showcase of offerings from the Brickfilms community, perhaps it is better to consider it a loss leader* for attracting more members — hoping that a portion of those new members might become Patrons.
The promotion of patronage should not serve as a limitation to the services provided by Brickfilms. Restricting ministerial positions to Patrons might also serve to promote patronage; and the fact that RevMen opposed such a precondition indicates that he is willing to let patronage recruitment take back seat to the effective administration of the site.
Again, an extremely valid suggestion and I should hope that other candidates might adopt it as part of their platform. As for my own feelings, once the simplified “emoticon rating” is implemented, the effort to modify the current rating system to a meaningful state would not be worthwhile. Part of the elegance of my plan is that it eliminates the need for a minister to watch over it.
I am not that familiar with the YouTube rating system and whether or not it is a good thing or why that should be. If you care to explain in more detail, I think we should all benefit from the discussion. It is fine for such a discussion to take place in this thread. My candidacy is about how the Directory is to be administrated in the future, not whether I am the one doing it.
If you are worried about potential for abuse — people joining solely to promote “a friend’s” film — I would agree that there is a component of that. Nonetheless, it is my opinion that such shenanigans should be rendered futile once the rating of films becomes so simple that any member who actually watches it will take the time to leave their opinion.
It is time to show a little faith in our membership, just as there has been a democratization of the administration of the site, why should that same openness not be applied to the ratings of Directory films?
Isn’t the very existence of the Directory for “viewers looking for a good film to watch”? Video is going to become a first class citizen of the Web by the end of this year; Brickfilms needs to position itself to take advantage of this. The presentation of our community’s offerings has to be apprehensible to the average visitor and it is better to have an “over-simplified” rating system which accurately represents the opinions of a film’s viewers than some convoluted and arbitrary assignment of numerical values where even the rater has no clue as to whether his choices accurately reflect his views.
* “loss leader” is a term used in marketing for services and/or commodities offered at no profit or even a loss in order to attract potential customers.
|June 10, 2007 at 10:34 pm #294384|
The intial point of creating the 15 fps patronage at $3 per year is not so much to make money for the site as much as it is to ensure that people who rate films are serious about doing it. It’s very little money, but someone has to go through the process of paying it… something not likely to be done by someone who wants to mess around with film ratings. The site certainly could withstand losing revenue from 15 fps patrons if it meant a better rating system.
One of my original ideas for creating the Minister of Film Ratings was to have someone who bestowed the right to rate films on people he thought were responsible and involved in the community.
|June 10, 2007 at 11:33 pm #294417|
I personally don’t like your plan, Saulgoode. As others have mentioned, it seems to simple, and it basically removes any reason to be a 15fps patron aside from just donating to the site.
|June 11, 2007 at 12:10 am #294424|
Well, that kind of throws a left-handed monkey wrench into my plans for early retirement. I will adjust my proposal to incorporate that concept. My first bullet shall be replaced with:
Both of your concerns are valid points of discussion. Let me address the second one for now and I will get back to you with my thoughts on why it is not overly simplified sometime within the next day or so.
I should think that the greatest barrier for the majority of members becoming Patrons is not the $3.00 per annum dues that are required, but the complications arising from banking transactions over the Internet. The youth of our membership and their geographic location in many cases make it very inconvenient to become such Patrons. The potential revenue sacrificed by removing one of the incentives to becoming a Patron has to be weighed against the loss to the community of having a large portion of its membership prevented from participating and contributing in this matter. I do not wish to see the owners of Brickfilms suffer financially but I do believe that funding can be had in a less detrimental manner.
|June 11, 2007 at 2:51 pm #294583|
I like how concise your position is. I definitely think the race for MoFR will be close.
You and Ladon both have wonderfully put together ideas.
You have the advantage of being a new candidate for the position, and simplicity of political platform. People like to see change – and you definitely have a great approach to the idea. I highly appreciate how you’re running on your own merit and capability, rather than trying to discount Ladon’s ideas.
It’ll be a tough race, because he has seniority and experience on his side.
Good luck, you have some great ideas and methods!
|June 13, 2007 at 1:48 am #295113|
Personally, I don’t see how you can just write this scenario off, as I do think that a lot of films would suffer some bias through a single person rating it multiple times, but I’m a pessimist.
However, I don’t understand why you haven’t responded to Watson’s idea, as I agree with him that the current ratings are very helpful for actual members of this site (especially when doing something like the BAMPAs; looking at films ranked by cinematography scores can really help). I think it is downright insulting to just abolish past work and only give the actual brickfilmers of this site-people that do care about the animation quality, or sound, or cinematography, or effects-nothing with which to filter out their searches.
Which is why implementing this system while keeping the current ratings would be just dandy, imo. I could see the benefits of a youtube/free-for-all rating system, but it makes no sense to remove the more comprehensive, patron-only ratings as well. I agree that (part of) the directory’s purpose is to help people find good brickfilms to watch, but the current system still holds a very valuable purpose for brickfilmers.
Plus, what about older films? I assume that films of the same rating ( for instance) would be organized by date of acceptance, in which case there would be literally hundreds of films with the same score. How exactly would that help newcomers find the best films? The only solution I see are Staff Picks, but then the Staff would probably pick more films to make sure they are seen, more-or-less bringing us back to the same problem.
|June 16, 2007 at 10:11 am #295856|
I wish to apologize for the delayed response and also for missing Watson’s post. I knew that I had a hectic schedule this week and the few times that I had available to access Brickfilms, I experienced difficulty. I shall try to address all of the posted concerns and hopefully do a better job of explaining my position than I did initially.
First, let me address CG’s concern about incorporating existing data into the new system. Though anyone rating a film would be restricted to the four levels of preference I proposed, the actual overall rating would be a decimal number. By the same token, any pre-existing rating would also be such a decimal number so, instead of having several films all start with a , there would still be a “spread” of films with different ratings (“6.2″, “6.6″, “7.1″, etc). Yes, we would be sacrificing different categories but please allow me to drag out my old soapbox and attempt to explain the reasoning behind my proposal.
I can certainly sympathize with the dilemma that the incumbent (Ladon) has had to deal with in determining how to improve the Film Rating System. I admire the fact that he has put forth sincere proposals with the intent of producing such improvements. Moreso than any other ministerial position up for election, this one is a contest of ideas; the issue in this election is not whether the candidate is popular or trustworthy. The issue is this: THE CURRENT RATING SYSTEM IS FLAWED. The statistics that it has collected border on meaningless. The people rating films do not share a common basis on how to correlate their own votes to those of everyone else and there are not enough people rating films to overcome the noise floor of this difference.
The most significant aspect of my proposal is not the cute little emoticon heads assigned to each rating; those are just finger puppets and it would have been better had I left them out as they obscure the real message I intended; i.e., there has to be a direct association between a rater’s opinion and his rating.
Yes, everyone will have differing opinions on what constitutes a good brickfilm; but if you and I both share the same opinion, there is something wrong with the system if you give it a rating of “4″ and I rate it a “7″. That is the situation we have now. What I am proposing is that the description of the rating describe exactly the meaning of the rating, not some arbitrary assignment of a numerical index.
As far as my proposal oversimplifying the rating system is concerned, let me say this: the Film Directory is no longer an IMDB-type catalog of brickfilming activity. It has progressed beyond that. The Directory is a “showcase” of what our community has to offer. It is a “coveted place of honor” [Nosniborus] and “the idea of the Directory is to have a list of ‘the best’ films (by “best” we mean ‘most enjoyable’ rather than just ‘perfect sound and animation’ etc)” [An Old Ore].
Now it may sound as though I am being cynical but that is not my intent. If you have been following the various discussions about the criteria for admission of a film into the Directory over the last few years (and the more philosophical threads such as this one), you will see that, indeed, the Directory is intended to become our “trophy case”. I THINK THAT IS GREAT! Let it become so.
But let’s not bog down our trophy case with a bunch of technical statistics (of marginal utility). As a community, we have the Post & Review Forum for discussion of the various technical aspects of films amongst fellow brickfilmers. We should also look towards elevating the BAMPAs to a higher level to distinguish particular achievements in specific categories.
But let’s DO simplify the presentation of the Directory to the visitor. Let’s make the Ratings, though simplified, at least represent the genuine feelings of the people who did the rating: “I disliked it”, “I liked it”, “I liked it a lot”, “IT WAS FANTASTIC!” … these are not difficult concepts and, though everyone has differing tastes and differing opinions, there is no confusion such as whether a “5.5″ is a good rating or a bad one or whether a well-choreographed flip-roll falls under Cinematography, Animation, or Effects.
“World Domination” has been a long-running gag here at Brickfilms but if there is any amount of truth to gaining popular recognition for the artistic talents exhibited by its members, the Film Directory is the place to showcase it. The first step towards reaching out to this world-wide audience is to provide a simple rating system which won’t require they be an animator in order to understand.
|June 16, 2007 at 10:24 am #295859|
Rev mate, the problem is that many of our patrons- who pay money for therating service- already misuse their ability (which is why so many good films have disproportional ratings). It would make no difference if nonpatrons were given the same opportunity.
I fully support Saul Goode and all of his positions.
|June 16, 2007 at 8:57 pm #295980|
I really don’t understand why we can’t have both. What is wrong with having the technical ratings alongside the more general rating? Have the general rating take preference, that’s fine by me, but there is absolutely, positively, no reason to exclude the technical ratings. It doesn’t hurt anyone. Even hide them and force the viewer to click a link to see these ratings, if you’re that paranoid of them. Have the search function operate by the general rating, and allow an Advanced Search function for those who are interested in viewing films by their technical ratings.
Honestly, if you went with this compromise, you would most likely have my vote. I do agree that a general rating would be beneficial, especially for non-brickfilmers, but I see no reason to abolish the technical ratings that patrons can submit. I think it’s the best of both worlds.
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