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OPINION: Review Units Hurt the Audio Community - Page 10  

post #136 of 149
Thread Starter 

Here is something interesting about raffles.

 

It's actually illegal in many places to run a 'pay to enter' raffle online. This is considered running a pay to enter game of chance, which is another way of saying 'online gambling'.

post #137 of 149
Quote:
Originally Posted by a_recording View Post
 

 

I can't answer your first question because I have now been warned I will be banned for talking about it.

 

2) I have done a lot of reading about economics and incentives. I wish I could point you towards more specific things, but it's been a lot of background reading. As I said, I'm not a behavioural economist. I have no expertise in the field besides intense interest. I can tell you that all the research on compliance and conformity would suggest that people are influenced by their peers. Foot in the door technique, etc.


There is more then peer influence going on. First for a very light introductory read I would highly suggest Gladwell's Blink. It may whet your appetite for more serious and in depth reading on what influences us. Within the first few chapters you will find very good reason for not posting negative reviews;)

 

 One of the main issues I have with "Unboxing Videos" (other than they are as boring as a dogs arse) is that they bias an audience toward the product one way or another.

 

While were about it the actual choice of medium is a bias in itself. A printed review vs. a video will garner very different responses from the same people.

post #138 of 149
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutnicks View Post
 


There is more then peer influence going on. First for a very light introductory read I would highly suggest Gladwell's Blink. It may whet your appetite for more serious and in depth reading on what influences us. Within the first few chapters you will find very good reason for not posting negative reviews;)

 

 One of the main issues I have with "Unboxing Videos" (other than they are as boring as a dogs arse) is that they bias an audience toward the product one way or another.

 

While were about it the actual choice of medium is a bias in itself. A printed review vs. a video will garner very different responses from the same people.

 

I really should read Blink. It keeps coming up. But again, I'm guessing Doctors have pretty good reasons to prioritise patient care. 

 

I actually don't love unboxing videos either. They can sometimes be helpful, but not my favourite thing. But I know that some people in my audience like them and it at least gives me a video post where I can do the unboxing, and then write first impressions in the video description. Also lets people know what is coming up to review, since I almost always review a product once I've received it.

 

I definitely can sense the difference between written reviews and videos, and I do both very differently. It's entirely possible that I make people feel better about a product simply by talking about it neutrally, simply because of familiarity. I can't really control that, but I'd rather be responsive to my viewers than anyone else. 

post #139 of 149
Quote:
Originally Posted by a_recording View Post
 

 

I really should read Blink. It keeps coming up. But again, I'm guessing Doctors have pretty good reasons to prioritise patient care. 

 

I actually don't love unboxing videos either. They can sometimes be helpful, but not my favourite thing. But I know that some people in my audience like them and it at least gives me a video post where I can do the unboxing, and then write first impressions in the video description. Also lets people know what is coming up to review, since I almost always review a product once I've received it.

 

I definitely can sense the difference between written reviews and videos, and I do both very differently. It's entirely possible that I make people feel better about a product simply by talking about it neutrally, simply because of familiarity. I can't really control that, but I'd rather be responsive to my viewers than anyone else. 

Doctors should have good reason to prioritize a patients care. Depending on the system they are working in this may not be so. They are as susceptible to judgement issues as anyone else. They also have an enormous amount of new information to sift through with regards to care options on an almost daily basis. These are factors that pharmas have capitalized on very successfully over the years. FOTD is not soley an audio related phenomena.


In terms of retained information you would probably be shocked at the stats for video vs reading.

 

If you read Blink, the next best coffee table science presentation is Daniel Kahnemann's Thinking Fast and Slow.  I will quite literally widen your eyes to your everyday life, without requiring a PhD to comprehend.

 

Go back to my post way back about Twarps quote on changing the colour of a towel hanging in the background of a set altering the audiences reaction to a play. Subtle changes in environment can make great differences. They are usually things of which we are completely unaware.

post #140 of 149
Quote:
Originally Posted by a_recording View Post

 

[SNIP]

These reviews have been picked by the moderators to be featured on the front page. Surely you would expect at least these reviews to have been reviewed by the moderators for rule compliance?

 

Mods could always ask a reviewer to edit the review and clear things up before featuring it on the front page. This is clearly not happening.

[SNIP]

 

Just a few things to clarify :-

 

1) Can I fix some misunderstanding (and therefore lead to misinformation) here? Mods don't pick what reviews get featured on the front page. I'm sure someone does but am not certain whom. But it's not Currawong, Warrenpchi, nor myself. Presumably neither Duncan, although I've not checked with him. So that'll limit the number of people who can actually review a review.

 

2) Just an FYI: Currawong got the Oppo units from me. Basically Oppo Digital Japan -> me -> Currawong -> Oppo Digital Japan.

post #141 of 149
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutnicks View Post
 

If you read Blink, the next best coffee table science presentation is Daniel Kahnemann's Thinking Fast and Slow.  I will quite literally widen your eyes to your everyday life, without requiring a PhD to comprehend.

 

Go back to my post way back about Twarps quote on changing the colour of a towel hanging in the background of a set altering the audiences reaction to a play. Subtle changes in environment can make great differences. They are usually things of which we are completely unaware.

 

I've actually read Thinking Fast and Slow, though I haven't finished it. Definitely an incredible insight. Someone mentioned it in the diary thread but I don't remember who.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post
 

 

Just a few things to clarify :-

 

1) Can I fix some misunderstanding (and therefore lead to misinformation) here? Mods don't pick what reviews get featured on the front page. I'm sure someone does but am not certain whom. But it's not Currawong, Warrenpchi, nor myself. Presumably neither Duncan, although I've not checked with him. So that'll limit the number of people who can actually review a review.

 

2) Just an FYI: Currawong got the Oppo units from me. Basically Oppo Digital Japan -> me -> Currawong -> Oppo Digital Japan.

 

Right I think Warren corrected me on this. I let Currawong know and he edited the post. Nonetheless I imagine whoever is choosing what gets featured should at least make sure that what gets featured complies with posting guidelines BEFORE it gets featured. It speaks to the fact that it really isn't a consideration, which is what this thread is trying to change.

post #142 of 149
Pharma companies have a much bigger trick up their sleeve than pens and pads: Hiring hot babes as pharma sales reps. Just sit in your Doctor's waiting room for a morning, and you will see an endless stream of tall, thin, hot women parading through the office with their wheeled briefcases.

Now, back to the topic:
Would the proposed funding source include funds to pay head-fi for all this fact-checking and background investigating that is being talked about in such a cavalier manner?

I don't want head-fi to turn into Stereophile Magazine. I don't want reviews to be only from a clique of golden-eared demigods. I want members to be free to write about the products they have tried. The ONLY type of rules on reviews that I would support would be if "professional" reviews were segregated into a separate forum, and the only people that were allowed to post there are reviewers that pay head-fi for that privilege. Of course, that still won't stop the average head-fi member from writing about a product in a random thread in the equipment forums - even if they are getting free samples - but guess what, that's going to happen NO MATTER WHAT ANY OF YOU SAY OR DO.

I expect head-fi moderators to moderate based on what they believe is best for head-fi - NOT what is best for a member or the "community". If it happens to coincide (as it would in the majority of cases), great - but when it doesn't, I expect a business owner to do what he thinks is best for his business. You can decry that this is what's wrong with the world, and you can hope for a kinder, gentler world of people singing kumbaya - but in the real world, in a real business, only the uber-rich can afford to run a business with humanitarianism as their #1 priority.
post #143 of 149
Quote:
Originally Posted by billybob_jcv View Post

Would the proposed funding source include funds to pay head-fi for all this fact-checking and background investigating that is being talked about in such a cavalier manner?

I don't want head-fi to turn into Stereophile Magazine. I don't want reviews to be only from a clique of golden-eared demigods. I want members to be free to write about the products they have tried. The ONLY type of rules on reviews that I would support would be if "professional" reviews were segregated into a separate forum, and the only people that were allowed to post there are reviewers that pay head-fi for that privilege. Of course, that still won't stop the average head-fi member from writing about a product in a random thread in the equipment forums - even if they are getting free samples - but guess what, that's going to happen NO MATTER WHAT ANY OF YOU SAY OR DO.

How much does it cost to PM a member before putting his review on the front page in order to check that the reviewer has fully disclosed any connection with the product? Just about nothing. Yes, honesty and oversight are nearly costless.

No one would be prevented from posting comments in a thread. But a review--and we all know the difference between a comment and a review--would require disclosure. The fact that some members might not abide by the rules doesn't mean we throw up our hands and say, "We don't need rules."
post #144 of 149
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post

How much does it cost to PM a member before putting his review on the front page in order to check that the reviewer has fully disclosed any connection with the product? Just about nothing. Yes, honesty and oversight are nearly costless.

No one would be prevented from posting comments in a thread. But a review--and we all know the difference between a comment and a review--would require disclosure. The fact that some members might not abide by the rules doesn't mean we throw up our hands and say, "We don't need rules."

So, from this, I conclude that on the one hand, you do not trust a reviewer to give a truthful opinion of the gear unless he discloses the source of every piece of gear he uses, however, you do trust the reviewer to always tell the truth when asked where he got the gear he is reviewing.

My major beef is that you are creating a false sense of veracity. You are going through the motions for no real benefit, the improvement is an illusion. Because of this, the very people you are trying to protect - those that would blindly buy without using their own judgement - are going to just as blindly be led by this illusion. You seem to believe that doing something is better than doing nothing. That is not always the case.
post #145 of 149
Minimizing the potential for bias will not trick anyone.

I have treated you with respect throughout this disagreement, and I expect the same.
post #146 of 149

Okay, here's how I see it.  All of our reviews, be they here on Head-Fi or elsewhere, are subject to peer review.  I've had people call me out on things I've said about products - both good and bad things I've said about products - and I wouldn't have it any other way.  Why?  Because it is a VERY effective way of curbing the result of any and all bias, regardless of where that bias originates.

 

I believe that ultimately, this peer review system is FAR more important than where the unit comes from.  As long as the reviewer did not receive compensation, in either currency or product, I could give a flying fudge about where it comes from.  It's the community at large, of which each of us are a part, that keeps us honest and accountable to one another.  Simply changing the source of a reviewed unit pales in comparison in it's ability to keep us fair and impartial.

 

IOW, in the bigger picture, I seriously don't think this is that big a deal.  Reviewers that shill will be found out and rendered irrelevant soon enough, because we will stop paying attention to them.  And then that happens, I think that manufacturers will stop lending then products to review.  So that problem takes care of itself.

 

Back to the topic at hand... if Lachlan, or anyone else wants to source units differently, that's fine with me.  If anyone - including myself - wants to source units from manufacturers, that's fine with me too.  We're all free to do it our own way.  Let the community judge our output, as has always been the case.

 

THAT SAID...

 

Jude has made it clear that he does not want people using Head-Fi to solicit monetary support... be it for review units or anything else.  Whether you agree or not is wholly irrelevant.  For as long as he owns (and pays for) the site, that's the rule.  So if anyone does solicit, and I'm not saying that anyone has, but if anyone does - I'll be locking/deleting that thread/post.  And repeated infractions may result in a ban, in the same way repeated infractions of any other rule may result in a ban.  It's not about protecting sponsors (they don't sponsor me and I don't see a dime of their money).  It's about enforcing a rule, plain and simple.


Home of the Liquid Carbon, Liquid Crimson, Liquid Glass, Liquid Gold and
Liquid Lightning headphone amplifiers... and the upcoming Liquid Spark!

post #147 of 149

I am going to close this thread now, because Lachlan has a competing financial interest in posting (whether he likes it or not). Like we do with people who have a financial interest in an audio-related product (a Member of the Trade) we don't allow them to go on tirades about their competitors, especially when those tirades are cross-posted across different threads, something ALSO discouraged in the Posting Guidelines I wrote.

 

As always, if anyone has an issue with something on Head-Fi, they can PM me and discuss it.

post #148 of 149
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenpchi View Post
 

It's about enforcing a rule, plain and simple.

 

Why wasn't this rule enforced, for 8 out of 13 featured reviews? It seems pretty plain and simple? These reviews are meant to represent some of the best content Head Fi has, and yet it's not necessary to check if they follow the guidelines?

 

Quote:
Importantly, you must state, when expressing an opinion on or writing a review of equipment if it was loaned or given to you for posting comments or review or discounted in any form at purchase. You must also declare any relationships you have or had to audio equipment manufacturers or resellers. We like everything to be open and transparent here and that includes whether or not people are receiving any financial or other benefit from posting.Members of the Trade and Sponsors are clearly marked in their profile and posts so there is no ambiguity about a person's reason for posting. Failing to declare a discount or association may result in your reviews being deleted and your account being banned and the manufacture may risk black-listing from Head-Fi.

 

You can't simply wave away the fact that there is no culture for this kind of transparency on the forum because it 'doesn't matter' or that 'people can lie anyway'. Many people on this forum have no malicious intent when they don't fully disclose review units. They just simply do not see what the problem could be, and if there is no culture of enforcing the actual rule of the forum then people will continue to not see the need for disclosure. As part of this 'peer review', people need this information.

 

The administrators set this rule up, not me. At the very least they should be consistent.

post #149 of 149

I wrote the rule. It is the same rule as in the Terms of Service that refers to shilling. Manufacturers have been banned and blacklisted for shill-posting.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by a_recording View Post

 

Why wasn't this rule enforced, for 8 out of 13 featured reviews? 

 

Because, surprisingly, most people who write reviews bought the item!

 

As you are soliciting for and collecting money to buy gear to review and support your living expenses, you are now a member of the trade (a paid reviewer), like Tyll, like Chris (ComputerAudiophile), like ljokerl, etc., and there is nothing wrong with that. However, just as we do not allow one manufacturer to have a go at another on our forums, we are not going to let you unceasingly have a go at us, and certainly not as your only reason for being here (which you have clearly stated on Facebook is the only thing you intend to do here now).

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