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Thoughts on the potential "unfairness" of the leader board (T)
Thread poster: xxxCMJ_Trans
xxxCMJ_Trans
Local time: 09:22
French to English
+ ...
Dec 9, 2004

For some time, I have been musing about the leader board and wondering whether it is really useful. Let me explain:
First of all, my comments are - God forbid - not meant as criticisms, at least not of the destructive variety. Instead I just what to point out constructively a few reasons why I think the system is flawed.
One of the reasons I am doing this now is that I am in the strange position of having the smallest workload I have ever had in my whole (long) life! Before you all start rushing to open a fund to bail me out, I should add that one client is actually paying me to wait until the work filters through. In the meantime, I have been "playing Proz" and, as a result, finally made it to the leader board. Which brings me to my point(s).......
(1) Like many other people I will never be top of the list because I started some years after the original members
(2) I can earn quite large numbers of points because I have a large number of language pairs
(3) My language pairs tend to be the ones which have the most questions, as far as I can tell (English/French; French/English; German/English...).
(4) If you have plenty of time and answer a maximum of questions (and if you are not totally stupid), you are bound statistically to clock up a reasonable number of points.

My conclusion: why should those who have been at the game the longest, work in the commonest language pairs, have the most language permutations and - to cap it all -the most spare time be the ones who get to look the best in the league tables?

Am I the only one who thinks that a weighting system would not go amiss? Or even, what about scrapping the leader board altogether?

I hope nobody, especially those at the top of the league, will take these comments wrong. I simply feel that what you see is not necessarily what you get! I would also like to know whether I am alone in thinking that the system has the potential to be vastly unfair.

I hope this is taken in the spirit in which it is meant
Chris




[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2005-02-01 22:27]


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 03:22
SITE FOUNDER
Great points Dec 9, 2004

We have a (prototype) new leaderboard to address a number of these issues. Want to evaluate it? Contact me via my profile.

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Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 02:22
German to English
potential unfairness of the leaderboard Dec 9, 2004

Hello CMJ_Trans, you are not all by your lonesome on this one. It has been raised many times before and I know moderators and site staff have been discussing ways to address the visibility issue. I remember the days when I started and the leader had 3,000 points in my language combination and felt the way you do now.
Here's one earlier thread on a similar topic that you might find interesting:

http://www.proz.com/topic/24865

Cheers, Kim


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xxxCMJ_Trans
Local time: 09:22
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I saw that earlier thread but.... Dec 9, 2004

Here's one earlier thread on a similar topic that you might find interesting:

http://www.proz.com/topic/24865

I found the suggestions so complicated, I switched off somewhere along the line.
Please don't get me wrong, I am NOT aspiring to be top of the list. Since I do not use the site to get work (though I occasionally use it to find people to do work for me), points are academic to me. (Of course, there is that smug satisfaction of having been so dreadfully clever.) I just like being helpful as a good way of breaking out of my (often) isolation.

If I raised the point it was because, when hunting for someone to do a job for me, I came across a "nameless" person using prozs points as a reference and it crossed my mind that, as a potential buyer, I could be led up the garden path with those darned things.

In truth, apart from the buzz factor, I cannot see the point of points at all....


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:22
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Thank you, the site needs a lot more outsourcer involvement Dec 10, 2004

As someone freelancing and now being obliged to do more consultation duties by clients, I do find we lean a bit more tendentiously towards the freelancers (like myself, basically). As Professional Development forum moderator, for instance, I often wonder how many publishers we have (apart from my co-mod in Sp>En) and how many are interested in information for publishers, which is somewhat more plentiful than I had accounted for. I'd love to hear more outsourcer feedback on how proz.com can better serve the outsourcing side. In relation to your topic, it just might be rephrased as how the site can be more pro-active for clients.

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A Hayes
Australia
Local time: 17:22
No, you're not alone Dec 10, 2004

Please don't get me wrong, I am NOT aspiring to be top of the list. Since I do not use the site to get work (though I occasionally use it to find people to do work for me), points are academic to me. (Of course, there is that smug satisfaction of having been so dreadfully clever.) I just like being helpful as a good way of breaking out of my (often) isolation.

If I raised the point it was because, when hunting for someone to do a job for me, I came across a "nameless" person using prozs points as a reference and it crossed my mind that, as a potential buyer, I could be led up the garden path with those darned things.

In truth, apart from the buzz factor, I cannot see the point of points at all....
[/quote]

I totally and wholeheartedly agree with you, CMJ_Trans. And I honestly don’t think employers give a hoot about points. I for one certainly wouldn't.

However, whether the leader board is there or not doesn’t bother me. I don’t have time for the points game, but others seem to take it seriously, so I guess for them it’s important to be rewarded. I often ask questions and I appreciate all the help I get. This is precisely the reason why I answer questions — few as they may be. I see it as a chance to return the favour.


[Edited at 2004-12-11 15:32]


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xxxCMJ_Trans
Local time: 09:22
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
outsourcer's perspective Dec 10, 2004

What I am really saying is that the problem with points is that an outsourcer who doesn't know the system could easily be fooled.
When I said "weighting" I meant perhaps some indication of how common the language pairs concerned are, or even how many language pairs the particular person has. Some people may answer every single question in a particular language pair and achieve few points because there is not much traffic in that pair. Some many have multiple language pairs and have more chances to score.
If there is a competition here, not everybody is competing on an equal footing, which - to my mind - destroys the whole purpose of the system.
I'm not interested in the debate on 1, 2, 3 or 4 points (though I find the categories unhelpful - why so much emphasis on references when there are people with masses of experience?), nor I am talking about whether one should be able to divide points between answerers (though that might make things a little less unfair). I am talking about a fundamental absence of level playing fields.....
Is there anyway to overcome this problem or would it not simply be best to scrap the whole points system


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Mark Xiang
Local time: 15:22
English to Chinese
+ ...
Totally agree with you, CMJ_Trans! Jan 3, 2005

The other facet of your issue is that some guy makes full use of this KudoZ mechanism by asking peers to do the translation for him: Some BIG askers habitually and frequently asks nearly ten questions in a row every time,and several time in a single day! I call them KudoZ Point Suppliers: they provide endless supply of KudoZ points.^_^ That should be good to those who want to earn some KudoZ points. The problem is that some BIG asker keeps choosing the wrong answers and awards points to the answerers who provide the wrong answers.

That is the question I raised here:
http://www.proz.com/topic/28031


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