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Dan2099

5 star ratings

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I would like to see a 5 star rating system for caches, that way it gives feedback to both the c/o and cachers.... Favorite points do help some but not always because favorite points could be given out do to several factors....

 

Have a rating system for: OVERALL, Location, container, area, originality, etc.....

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Yes, different people give favorites points for different reasons. But what makes you think that different people wouldn't give 5-star ratings for different reasons?

 

And the more complicated you make the ratings, the more garbage data you'll get. A lot of people wouldn't bother assigning a meaningful 5-star rating to every cache, let alone several meaningful 5-star ratings for every cache.

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Could be confusing.... as we already have "star" ratings. Both (D)ifficulty and (T)errain go up to 5-stars.

How 'bout five Hearts, instead?

 

:blink::lol::)

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Could be confusing.... as we already have "star" ratings. Both (D)ifficulty and (T)errain go up to 5-stars.

How 'bout five Hearts, instead?

 

:blink::lol::)

 

Well I think any type of rating would do, I was just spit balling with the 5 star ideas.

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NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

A five star overall rating system is useless. Different people like different caches and ratings may vary widely from cacher to cacher. People who prefer urban caches to hiking ones will reflect that in their ratings. People who prefer easy park and grabs to complicated multis will reflect that in their rating. Some people will rate on the condition of the container or the swag in it, others will look to the location or the type of hide to determine points.

 

To some degree you would get filtering since some people won't even try the types of cache they don't like. This is why movie ratings have some usefulness, as romantic comedies get rated by people who like romantic comedies and action movies get rated by people who like action movies. But I don't think geocaching has reach this level of genres. In particular people who claim to not like urban hides in parking lots continue to find these caches - and I think they may want a rating system just to vent their frustration at choosing to look for a cache they aren't likely to enjoy. Imagine if all the people who dislike action movies were to go on Netflix and rate action movies. The ratings would become useless for action movie goers.

 

If there were such a system on Geocaching.com, I would rate every LPC as 5 stars as a protest.

 

I like favorites because I'm not forced to rate every cache. Just those that stand out for me. So if I happen to do a cache in a genre I don't like, there is no 1 star to punish it for my error in selecting a cache that I probably wouldn't like. Also I'm not given out negative favorite point just because I'm having a bad day. If a cache gets a number of favorite points then I know that a lot of cachers liked this. (Despite the claim that some make that if the ratio of favorites to the number of finds is small it might not be so great).

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I agree that the simple Favorites point system now in place is adequate. Even though people like caches for different reasons, lame caches tend to get no Favorite points and cool caches tend to get Favorite point, whatever the reason for them. Same as movie ratings...One person might love the movie because of the story, another might love the soundtrack, another might just be a huge fan of the lead actor...for whatever reason, they all average out to an overall good rating.

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Actually, GCVote might be better than a Groundspeak implementation of a 5-point rating system.

 

With GCVote, only people who care enough to rate every cache on a 5-point scale are in the system. With a Groundspeak system, everyone would be rating caches, and you'd have a lot more garbage data in the system.

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I absolutely agree with the suggestion to improve the cache rating by a 5 star (or smilies or whatever) system with multiple factors!

But:

- Giving a rating must be optional (like in Amazon or...)

- The possibility to vote should be switched on for users with more than e.g. 50 finds, not too early.

- Enhanced voting only for "found" logs.

- We can discuss limitations like the one for favourites: One possible rating every 2nd cache and/or only premium. But a high amount of votes is needed for validity/significance.

- The amount of different rating factors should be small, I suggest maximum 5 or 6. Few people want to spend to much time/brains for voting found caches: It must be fast, simple and obvious.

- Another long discussion about name, meaning and function of the rating factors is needed. Which aspects of a cache do we want for voting?

 

Advantages:

- As a quality-more-important-than-quantity-cacher I would filter my search/pocket queries.

- It will increase fun for people like me, avoiding wasting my time with boring caches in stupid locations.

- It could drive Geocaching into "positive" directions. Example: Including a rating factor for "environment" may result in fewer visits at caches somehow spoiling nature. Example: A rating factor for "fun" may drive SOME Owners not to hide boring caches at boring places. Example: A family-friendly-rating factor will make our hobby more attractive for families and so on.

Owners will want to have good scores, so there is a motivational-force!

- Compatibility: Not voting or ignoring the results of such votes is easy.

 

 

Surely the rating will reflect a lot of different preferences, priorities, opinions and emotions. But with an increasing amount of votes, we are getting statistical tendencies, in a similar way like nowadays favourites: A cache with more than 30 votes and an average of 4,5 stars is probably “cool”, similar like a cache with today more than 30% favourite points (or a certain total amount).

But extending the favourite (or gcvote) system, with different factors will tell us -fast and easy- more than just “cool”: Is the Cache exiting, making you laugh, making children happy, on an interesting place, on a scenic location (a better rating will replace some attributes), environmental friendly and so on?

Votes of people, who are “miss-voting” for any reason (protest, revenge, laziness, friendhelping, frustration,...) are outbalanced sooner or later, similar like in other voting platforms. City-Caches get more visits/ratings from City-Cachers and a bad vote from a “country bumpkin” is statistically “suppressed” and vice versa. Most people know, that you can not trust a single 5 star vote, but 25 of 30 are telling you something.

 

Other platforms like http://gcvote.com/ are good and reflect the need of a better rating system, but we are discussing here the local implementation in geocaching.com, which just makes the handling easier and more obvious (compared to external platforms). Doing enhanced rating in geocaching.com simplifies the implementation of rating-filters in Searches/pocketqueries/shown maps and so on.

Edited by Ionspy

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I think the best feedback for COs is the logs. If you have a good cache then people will leave praise in their log. The millions of urban micros normally get TFTC and not much else. The favorite points are also a fair indicator of a good cache. It is fair to say people give fave points for different reasons, but as they are few and far between, they are given for a reason. An arbitrary rating system would not give us accurate feedback as not everyone would be accurate or bother. The rating system might also lead to ego bruised COs contacting people after a poor star rating to berate the finder.

 

After looking back at all the caches I have done and plan to do in the short term, the favorite points awarded to the caches have been a good indicator as to which caches either are worth a visit for the location, or the cache / puzzle made the cache worth doing.

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to get a feel for how this might work, you should know atht Wherigo carts allow ratings from 1 to 5 stars.

 

Most of them are rated 4 or 5 stars. Some are unrated.

It's pointless and useless.

 

I just looked at the Florida Wherigos, many of which I've found, and that's entire range of ratings. Nothing, or 4, 4.5 or 5 stars.

This provides exactly no information at all.

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I think the best feedback for COs is the logs. ...

 

My idea is more a search and filter system for potential cache-finders, searching the cachetype they prefer, not so much a feedback for COs.

 

to get a feel for how this might work, you should know atht Wherigo carts allow ratings from 1 to 5 stars.

 

...

 

You are right, a single 1 to 5 overall rating would not be much better than the favorites/gcquote/Wherigo situation. But I like the idea of what is called factors in the first post. That would make it useful.

Edited by Ionspy

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If we can't get some cachers to write more than SL TFTC, would you really trust the rating they gave the cache, if they even bothered to rate it in the first place?

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In addition to my earlier comments, I'll point out that YouTube used to have a 5-point rating system. Now they have a simple liked/disliked system. You can bet that Google analyzed a lot of data before and after that switch. But what makes it work is the recommendation system that correlates my preferences with those of others, and suggests items that were liked by people with preferences similar to my own. That kind of a recommendation system would work just fine with the current Favorites system, and it would have less garbage data to sort through.

 

(Half a dozen factors, each rated on a 5-point scale? Really? And you expect to get meaningful data from that?)

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Looks like most of what's being talked about could be found in PQs.

There's at least two other sites that have ratings on hides. Means nada.

Searching for favorites seems to be how many find "higher rated" caches, which are based on what "others" thought of the hide.

- And like the system you propose, opinions vary as to why it was favorited.

Why add yet another rating system in the mix?

When most logs today are, "TFTC" or the copy/paste, "Found with XYZ cacher", few would take the time to do anything else. Wasted stats?

I completely forgot about GCVote. Seemed like something else to take up time and I'm not steered by others. Most I know haven't used it either.

"Star" rating seems like a function that would be used by few.

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It seems like 90 percent of the stuff sold on Amazon.com has a rating of 3.5 to 4 stars. I can see the same thing happening with a similar system for caches, in which case it would essentially be useless.

 

The current system is imperfect but if you want to find an above average cache it certainly helps to check for favorite points.

 

It took TPTB a long time to decide whether a rating system was warranted. Once the came to the conclusion it was, they spent a long time considering various rating methods. They solicited input from the community, weighed the advantages and disadvantages of each and this is what they came up with. I don't see them scrapping it for another system, chiefly because it works.

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It seems like 90 percent of the stuff sold on Amazon.com has a rating of 3.5 to 4 stars. I can see the same thing happening with a similar system for caches, in which case it would essentially be useless.

 

The current system is imperfect but if you want to find an above average cache it certainly helps to check for favorite points.

 

It took TPTB a long time to decide whether a rating system was warranted. Once the came to the conclusion it was, they spent a long time considering various rating methods. They solicited input from the community, weighed the advantages and disadvantages of each and this is what they came up with. I don't see them scrapping it for another system, chiefly because it works.

 

I agree. As far as rating systems go, the favorites system works about as well as any I've seen. One of the things I've noticed about other hotel rating/review systems such as tripadvisor is that pretty much ever property will get some 5 star ratings and some that will rate it a 1 star. One of my favorites was a review of a beach front hotel somewhere tropical where the reviewer gave it a 1 star because the sand was black. Uh, the sand is black because its made up of volcanic rock and there are relatively few places in the world where you can find black sand.

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One problem with open reviews is like the star rating is that anyone can click on any rating. Friends are asked to bump the score. Rivals may vote 1 to lower a rating. Bored reviewers will probably be random with their clicks after the cut n paste TFTC log. The beauty of favorite points are that they are a limited resource and most people will only use them when they perceive a cache deserves it. I currently have 2 unspent fave points, although I have been to some good caches recently, nothing stood out for me, so I will hang on to them until I find a cache worth spending the points on.

 

Personally I think a star rating system is a very blunt tool and another statistic waiting to cause arguments.

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Personally I think a star rating system is a very blunt tool and another statistic waiting to cause arguments.

 

How much more blunt can we get than 'Favorite' or 'nothing'? :unsure:

It's totally one-dimensional.

Either it's a 'favorite', or you have no regard for the cache at all.

 

As it is, I don't use favorites other than to qualify for challenge caches.

 

When I'm on vacation, I WOULD LIKE to filter out lower-rated caches...but that isn't possible.

 

I can only see what is (arguably) the 'cream'.

 

I might be perfectly happy looking for 'whole milk' caches, but I have to figure out which those are for myself.

Similarly, I am left to my own devices to detect the 'whey' for myself.

 

The real issue is that some pointless guardrail cache hider(s) might get 'voted down', and not renew their premium membership(s).

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One problem with open reviews is like the star rating is that anyone can click on any rating. Friends are asked to bump the score. Rivals may vote 1 to lower a rating. Bored reviewers will probably be random with their clicks after the cut n paste TFTC log. The beauty of favorite points are that they are a limited resource and most people will only use them when they perceive a cache deserves it. I currently have 2 unspent fave points, although I have been to some good caches recently, nothing stood out for me, so I will hang on to them until I find a cache worth spending the points on.

 

Personally I think a star rating system is a very blunt tool and another statistic waiting to cause arguments.

 

I would echo this. People can and will vote up friends caches. Also a cache that is an awesome swag filled ammo can, may be a film canister or a water filled cracked container later.

Edited by BlueRajah

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If I have the ability to rate every cache with a number based on my opinion, then as a conscientious cacher I would make an effort to rate it accordingly. But on what do I base my vote? The location? The container? The journey there? There are a lot of variables to consider and if we all prioritise these factors differently then how does the next reader interpret my vote? Also my perception of what makes a good cache is different from you. I like looking at architecture, both good and bad, so many urban caches would be voted up on my finds, yet if you were to visit expecting a good cache you might be disappointed by the magnetic nano on the road sign.

So how to distinguish good caches? I read the logs, if there is a good cache the logs usually identify what makes it good. I think what we should be trying to do is educate cachers into making more informative log entries. I know mine could be better and as a noob I'm trying to refine my logging skills.

If you would like to introduce a star rating system, then maybe use multiple voting categories, that way you could vote according to what aspect you liked. But I maintain that the system would still not provide accurate information as a lot of cahers still only post TFTC so can you trust their votes?

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...

People can and will vote up friends caches. Also a cache that is an awesome swag filled ammo can, may be a film canister or a water filled cracked container later.

 

People can and do give favorite points to their friends caches.

 

People can and do give favorite points to a parking lot lampskirt cache only because they were FTF.

 

The awesome ammo can that gets lots of favorite points can turn into a cracked film canister just the same.

 

And on the 'friend and rivals' issue, my biggest disappointment with favorite points was the 'publicly viewable' aspect. If you DON'T give a favorite point to your homey's cache, they know it. GCVote is anonymous, I can honestly rate my friends' caches as a '2' if they are a '2', and I don't have to worry about a personal backlash.

 

While I suppose it could be possible, I doubt if anyone has enough friends who would 'up-vote' a cache enough to alter the average rating after 100 people have found the cache.

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I think the current rating is great. When I travel I usually sort by FPs and great ones do stay out. I mean if most have <10 the friend voted up one ~50 the really good one the one out of town people like will have 200. One need to look at age and the description as well.

What I wish is that we would get an extra rating for equipment need. I think the long hike and high mountain terrain 5 should be distinguishable from the lake island cache that is hidden difficulty 1 and terrain 5 because of the boat needed, even if it is an easy cruise to get there.

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If you would like to introduce a star rating system, then maybe use multiple voting categories, that way you could vote according to what aspect you liked. But I maintain that the system would still not provide accurate information as a lot of cahers still only post TFTC so can you trust their votes?

 

That's not a bad idea. Just as a review site might allow one to rate a restaurant with separate values for price, quality of the food, ambience, and service, a rating site that provides separate categories for location, creativity, etc. could provide a better assessment for the quality of a cache. Do I ever see something like that implemented? No, I don't.

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This is one of the most discussed suggestions on these forums over the years. I've never seen one yet that would be widely accepted. Keep in mind that the good folks at HQ really do not want a system that would make any CO or cache feel 'picked' on - no need to see unhappy customers and lots (more) abandoned caches.

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Won't work. Why, If I rate a cache "bad" because of lack of maintenance and etc, the same CO will rate my cache "bad" to get even.

 

It will only lead to more problems and abuse. We got some CO here that you dont want to mess with at all. They take everything so personal.

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