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Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

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Vancouver, WA
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53 posts
95 reviews
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Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

This is perplexing. Usually when I use tripadvisor, there are many many posts by people about accommodations, and it's no different for Pahoa---maybe for all of Hawaii. But what is odd is that so many of these posts are by people who have just posted once (and that is troubling).

Anyone else notice that?

Edited: 01 October 2012, 23:39
Island of Hawaii...
Destination Expert
for Hilo, Island of Hawaii
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37,794 posts
4 reviews
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1. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

Yes, and you should be troubled ...

I ignore anything that is the only post ever.

Sun City West...
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3,777 posts
51 reviews
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2. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

ed,

yes. there have been ongoing discussions regarding this issue.

what i do is disregard the unusually glowing reviews with the strange, overly critical ones. somewhere in the middle...is the truth.

competitors and the businesses themselves want your business and will do most anything to get it.

using the forums is another way to get first hand info...just as you're doing :-)

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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44,411 posts
3 reviews
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3. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

TA has been using some pop up feature that allows for "ratings" and really not reviews. The pop up drove me nuts until I finally got a good blocker. They at one point were adding the ratings into the review calculations for the popularity index but there was such an uproar they don't do that any more. You are now seeing the result of this. Some people still get them.

One post wonders are also there due to TA allowing businesses to solicit reviews.

Maui
Destination Expert
for Ka'anapali, Haleakala National Park, Maui
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49,802 posts
18 reviews
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4. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

Aloha,

Nick the Wonder Dog read some reviews for a B&B there that sound just lovely. His nose started twitching when he noticed a LARGE number of reviews that were indeed the poster's only contribution. Not just that, they had also joined this year............right before making the review.

TA is notorious for ignoring what has become a "game the system" problem. Places solicit positive reviews **only**, and then the property/hotel/restaurant/tour/ ratings skyrocket. It skews reality, but TA doesn't do anything about it.

Vancouver, WA
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53 posts
95 reviews
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5. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

Thanks for the feedback. I suspect that there is some part-time marketing guy or gal living in Hawaii that is advertising their "social media expertise" to the B&Bs out there. What a pity for the casual user who doesn't realize that tripadvisor can be gamed in this way.

After eliminated all of the "one post wonders", there were only a few B&Bs in the Pahoa area that were worth considering. And those, unfortunately, were sold out for our dates. No matter...we booked in Hilo (at our usual place) and that's not too far away for us to drive.

MY BIG WISH FOR TRIPADVISOR: Can't some entrepreneur step up and create a "smart filter" that will only display the reviews that its algorithm thinks are legit? That would be SO useful!

Washington DC...
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13,362 posts
301 reviews
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6. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

I've stayed at places (not B&Bs) on the mainland and in Europe, Australia and New Zealand that have little cards on the dresser encouraging me to do a TA review. That's reasonable, since they have no way of knowing if it will be positive or negative. So if I feel inclined to do a review, I do it.

Worse, sometimes on checkout they ask how I liked it and if I liked it, they ask me or give me a little card asking me to do a TA review. I usually do NOT do a review for them then, even the positive one I'd normally have written. That annoys me because it skews the reviews positive. If they asked people who said they had problems or thought it was so-so, then that would not be so biasing.

But interestingly, on some TA forums (not so much the Island of Hawaii one), when the forum is being used as a filter by someone who uses a post to warn about a place and/or posts a terrible review, some of the forum regulars "blame the victim" talking about how they lack credibility, how it is terrible to harm the owner's livelihood by reporting bad incidents, etc. There are usually smaller locations where perhaps people identify strongly with the place or business.

New Orleans...
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1,215 posts
112 reviews
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7. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

very interesting thread!

8. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

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Removed on: 04 December 2012, 18:05
Iowa
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835 posts
43 reviews
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9. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

Dislike

I wish there were a "verified" user option. If the reviewer cannot prove they went to the place then it will not be a "verified" review. They can still do a review BUT this will help the average person know how much weight to put on the review.

The only issue is that if a place wants to make themselves look good they will confirm someone working on their behalf EVEN though they may not be legit. I don't know how to fix that.

I usually see how many posts and reviews a person does--if they have only done one I don't even read it.

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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44,411 posts
3 reviews
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10. Re: Why are there so many "one contribution" ratings?

Not all who write reviews on the "English" version of TA are native speakers. One post wonders are a problem but in all fairness, someone has to start at the beginning. We've all had our 1st review. See mine? I have two and they were both done this year.

TA receives approx. 11,000 reviews a day. This would make verifying reviews impossible to do. Then, what would you use to verify? This very subject has been discussed in depth in the HUMTAB (Help Us Make TripAdvisor Better) forum numerous times.