Could it be time to consider allocating points to "comments" in line with "critiques" - The TrekEarth Forums


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Old 01-20-2011, 06:14 AM
phwall phwall is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 774
Default Could it be time to consider allocating points to "comments" in line with "critiques"

Here’s a thought that might help the site to become a little friendlier for new and old members.

Just recently in the General Forum there was a comment from a new member asking if her photographs were terrible because she hadn’t received any critiques or subsequent points. This must happen hundreds and hundreds of times without the general membership knowing, and must contribute to many new members leaving, disillusioned because they didn’t receive a single critique for their posted work.

Nowadays you don’t see too many genuine “critiques” of an image posted here on TE. Observations on how to improve the composition, spatial positioning, direction of attention, exposure, sharpness, aperture choice, (with regard to using lens and f\stop to accentuate dof) and subject matter are quite rare. If one were to pick any critiqued photograph at random, pretty well most of the critiques posted, could be, or should be, posted as comments. Most are usually generalised points such as, nice colour, sharpness, good dof, etc etc.

So why do we continue to write a “critique” rather than write a “comment”.
Simple really, comments carry no points.
Depending on the interest, is it worth considering asking the site controllers to change the system and allocate a 2 point Green Smiley to comments? Below is my contribution to the debate.

Two points for a comment would make it easier for all (existing and newcomers) to get more involved in the site. I know for me when I first joined, I found it quite intimidating to critique a photograph, especially photographs of any of the senior members. Yes I was intimidated, not by the photographs but by the mere fact I didn’t think I had the photographic skills needed to properly criticize an image. I loved the image and what I really wanted to do was comment, not critique, but commenting carried no points and I was concerned that my fellow member would be offended that I didn’t give them any points for their shot. So I didn’t do anything, comment or critique. Whether we like it or not the site runs on the “points” system. And it’s a good system, it gives members recognition for their effort and it provides positive incentive to one and all to improve their photographic skills.

I know a few members turn off their points and others say they don’t care about points, but for new members points are an important part of becoming active in the site. And who among you doesn’t like to see a healthy total of points for a posted image.

Commenting is much easier than critiquing, it is far less confrontational than critiquing, and it is a quick and easy way to let the photographer know you like their shot, and really, isn’t this what photography is all about. I know when I write a critique it takes me the best part of ten minutes to cover the points I want to express and longer if there is a workshop involved to show the point I’m trying to make. I could write a general positive “comment” that doesn’t offend the existing TOS in thirty seconds. Now wouldn’t this make the site easier and friendlier for all members?

Any thoughts, or am I barking up the wrong tree

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Old 01-20-2011, 09:47 AM
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Juntas Juntas is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Portugal
Posts: 661
Default Agree

Hi Peter.
I have no further thoughts but yours were very well explained along with your vision of TE today and I sure agree with that.
Have a nice day.
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:45 PM
Keitht Keitht is offline
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Gloucester, England
Posts: 4,070

Writing as a member - nothing to do with my 'Mod' tag - I'm opposed to giving points for comments. We see enough of the 'Good shot' type of comment without encouraging people to post more of that ilk.
People shouldn't be afraid to post their considered thoughts about an image, and that's all a critique is. Critiques are subjective and the person posting the photo may not agree with the content of a critique but that's life.
For me there are two major elements to the site. Firstly learning about the world, but the second - critiques is at least as important for me. I have learnt a massive amount from the input of others over the years I've been a member. If members don't want to receive critiques of their images, or are going to react badly to less than glowing reaction, I would humbly suggest that maybe they are posting on the wrong site.
The points system is a double edged sword. Yes it can be encouraging to get points for your photo but, as has been said many times before, there are a few groups of individuals in mutual admiration societies whose only object in life seems to be giving points to each other. Having points attributed to comments would be manna from heaven to them and I certainly don't want to see anything on the site to encourage their behaviour.
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Old 01-21-2011, 07:07 AM
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CMJC CMJC is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: vallée de l'Ubaye
Posts: 986
Default once again.... / bis repetita !

we don't go on with this question......

excusez moi mais voici une nouvelle suggestion; il faudrait voir la question sous un nouvel angle sinon on avancera jamais...

et si ce que l'on écrit était automatiquement classé en commentaire (car c'est majoritairement le cas de ce que nous écrivons tous)
avec éventuellement pour ceux qui ont besoin de points pour vivre la possibilité d'un donner un

puis si l'on écrit une critique technique là on coche la case (à appeller "critique technique" d'ailleurs ainsi on fait bien la différence) et l'on peut alors, éventuellement, offrir deux points! (ou aussi -1 si c'est une critique destructrice!!!)

enfin il faudrait un score des têtes vertes , tête bleues et têtes rouges aussi!
NON! là c'est une blague! et on pourrait d'ailleurs créer la catégorie tête jaune pour les points gagnés par les commenatires et non par les critiques....

mais perso je reste persuadée que les points ne servent à rien...

----------------- and now with babelfish translater help ------------

excuse me but here a new suggestion;
it would be necessary to see the question under a new angle if not we'll never advance…

if what we write was automatically classified in comment (because in mainly case that's what we all write) with possibly for those which need points to give one
then if we write a technical criticism, there one notches the box (to be called "technique critical" to make well the difference) and then we can then give two points! (or also -1 if c' is a destroying criticism!!!)
finally one would need a score of the green heads, head blue and red heads too! NOT! : eek: there c' is a joke! and d' could; elsewhere to create the yellow head category for the points gained by the commenatires and not by criticisms….

but perso I remain persuaded that the points are not used for nothing…

Last edited by CMJC; 01-21-2011 at 11:26 AM.
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Old 01-22-2011, 12:23 AM
delpeoples delpeoples is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 3,449
Smile I Agree

Hi People

I agree with Peter's suggestion (PHWall). It really makes sense. I would suggest that a person be allowed to write a total of 20 as usual but instead, comprised of either Critiques or Comments, and that each of those categories carry points.

When I first started at TE, this was something I couldn't understand. How could an inexperienced photographer like me in all honesty truly critique a photo by a far more experienced, often professional, photographer? The idea of me suggesting ways to improve an already flawless photo by someone of the likes of Inasiajones, Floydian, Carper, DKeus, Adam Burton or Signal-Womb would have been (and still is) ludicrous. All you can really do is admire the qualities of the shot. And yet in reality that excellent photographer is penalised for being excellent!

So in practical terms, we are left with the dual problem of that excellent photographer being left "point-less" (if that matters to them) and the person who "commented" rather than "critiqued" them possibly being ignored by that excellent photographer and losing the opportunity to learn from them.

There are many different types of people here on TE, as with the greater world out there. To some, the Points System has validity and merit, to other it does not. There are also some people, who although they want to learn, may not like writing or receiving negative (even if constructive) critiques. It is natural to want to foster good relations and not to come into conflict. That should not mean that TE "is not the place for them". If it was, TE would be almost member-less!

I agree with some of the other members who wrote that the majority of Critiques are no longer really critiques, but in fact Comments - for whatever motivation. I have been guilty of this, although usually try to find something constructive to say or to make a Workshop.

Of the regular members on this site, I'm pretty aware of who can and cannot stand criticism and who cares about points. And I will tailor my "Critique" accordingly. I would feel so much more "honest" if I could label my Critique a Comment and yet still give the photographer his points. Does that sound crazy?

Anyway, that's my two-cents. Have a good weekend everyone,
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Old 01-22-2011, 12:21 PM
Keitht Keitht is offline
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Gloucester, England
Posts: 4,070

Originally Posted by delpeoples View Post
How could an inexperienced photographer like me in all honesty truly critique a photo by a far more experienced, often professional, photographer? The idea of me suggesting ways to improve an already flawless photo by someone of the likes of Inasiajones, Floydian, Carper, DKeus, Adam Burton or Signal-Womb would have been (and still is) ludicrous.
Critiquing an image isn't necessarily about suggesting ways it can be improved. It's just as much about the content and what impresses you most about that content. A critique is no less valuable if it contains no negative content. For example reference to saturation, lines or objects drawing the eye into the image are informative and helpful to others.
There may also be a case to argue that there is no such thing as a perfect photo. There have been plenty posted here which I would love to be able to emulate, but I doubt that any of those persons mentioned above would claim that any of their images have been flawless. It's only by being the biggest critic of your own work that you continue to improve and develop as a photographer.
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