Viewpoints Celebrates Milestone: Our Review Quality Highest EverPosted: July 22, 2012
Viewpoints prides itself on reviews you can trust – so what happens when plagiarized or bogus reviews show up? A year and a half ago, we began a painstaking process to weed out weak reviews.
by Marly Schuman, Viewpoints Content Specialist
The Viewpoints team had a champagne toast on Thursday for finishing its long-standing project of reading every review posted on the site – a whopping 350,000 historical reviews. This means for just about every review ever published on the site, a real person, not a computer, has read through the review and decided whether or not it should stay on Viewpoints.
Quality control hasn’t always been easy
When the site was first created back in 2006, there was no such tool allowing Viewpoints to reject reviews or accept them to show they had been read. Currently, a small team of trained, skilled moderators have access to a tool that allows them to view reviews right after they are submitted and reject them if necessary. This ensures that the review quality will remain high going forward.
What happens after a review is submitted
As of February, 2012, each review submitted is now assigned a score that is then used to help determine the overall rating and ranking of the product. We believe Viewpoints is the only consumer reviews website that ranks products this way, giving you greater insights into how the products in a given category compare overall.
Viewpoints is also a bit of a rarity online in that we never delete or change a review because of outside pressure — our standard is simply excellence.
Michelle Esche was brought on to help with the project and says it wasn’t a matter of removing any real, honest reviews. “My mom thought if we’re a review site, why not leave all the reviews up there? I tried to explain to her that you can’t leave reviews that are copied from other sites, spam or reviews so poorly written you can’t understand them. It was part of our job as moderators to remove these,” Esche explains.
All reviews are given same scrutiny
Both positive and negative reviews are considered under the same criteria. Reviews are screened for plagiarism, spam and profanity. Other reasons reviews may be rejected are if they duplicate another review of the same user, if they represent more of a customer service dispute than product information or if something just doesn’t seem right.
During the celebration of the end of the project, those who worked on the project shared their favorite reviews, including a review rap and poem. They also reflected on their work.
“It was definitely a challenge at times, but it feels good to know that all the reviews we currently have on our site have been approved by one of our moderators,” says Esche. “Hopefully they’re higher quality and are more useful for consumers. Review quality is just so important for Viewpoints, and it definitely remains a top priority.”