Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Forum Popularity = Beta Invite

I've never been a fan of forums that utilize a reputation system. People vote up those that represent their view point and vote down the opposing view. It's just never made any sense to me to even have this "feature". So it's just been something that I pretend isn't there. But that's been hard to do lately over on the Rift forums since the topic seems to work its way into the majority of posts.

A couple weeks ago the CM announced that forum reputation would be one of the things they would look at when choosing beta participants. What a huge mistake that was. Groups started forming exchanging private messages to vote for each others' posts. Some members admitted to creating multiple accounts in order to vote for their own posts. Members who were voted down were posting the names of those who had done so in retaliation. Those who found themselves at the bottom of the reputation list hurried to fill the forums with their idea of "thoughtful" posts, hoping to regain some favor with the forum posters.

Recently, one fellow posted a suggestion that all the released Rift information be consolidated in one spot on the forums so it is easier to find. Currently, if you want to find the latest information on Rift, you have to do some digging on your own to visit fan sites, listen to podcasts, etc. Now if the reputation system weren't in place, I expect the forum thread would have had more normal responses to that post. Instead, hoping to gain forum favor with the fansite people and the CM responsible for posting forum info, members insulted the fellow, called him a troll for disparaging all the hard work they'd done. It's like some high school reality show over there. What a mess.

For any interested, the CM has also started a thread for you to post why you should be in beta. I'm not a fan of publicly selling myself so will likely be sitting this beta out unless I get invited through some other means. *crosses fingers*

To end on a more positive note, have you guys seen this Guild Wars 2 video? Wow, just wow. This is really looking and sounding amazing.


Bri said...

Years ago I posted regularly on a forum for several Unreal Tournament clans that used a "karma" system. Threads created to add karma points to everyone who posted to it were common, with some socially popular members having hundreds of points more than anyone else.

Bhagpuss said...

Terible idea.

Beta invites often go to people who have been active on forums giving good feedback and suggestions, but that's from the actual content of their posts, not some "you scratch my back..." system.

This is the first thing I've herad about Rifts that actively put me off following it. I hate to think what kind of community they are tryign to build.

Aspendawn said...

Can't imagine who at Trion thought this was a good idea and it's definitely not been helpful for community building.

Maybe this has all been a ruse. Maybe their secret plan is to pick forum members who didn't apply in that thread and haven't participated in the rep system, to get not so fan-boyish testers who would give honest, blunt feedback! ;P