Support » Requests and Feedback » Improving reviews

  • A few simple checkboxes at the top of the plugin review form could transform the all too often whiny, demanding, entitled, extortionary, spammy system that exists now into one that encourages critical thinking and constructive criticism, such as the following:

    ✓ Yes, this review is not a request for support or new features
    ✓ Yes, I have carefully read the plugin/theme description and FAQ already
    ✓ Yes, I understand this free software is contributed by volunteers in their spare time

    You could also:

    — require basic account verification to post reviews
    — limit reviews to older/active accounts
    — etc, etc

    Way too many plugin reviews are either fake positives (spam) or vengeful whiny rants from users who think they are owed something. It’s arguably well past time for to take a page from Yelp or Facebook’s playbook and required some merit and validation…

    • This topic was modified 3 years, 2 months ago by LittleBizzy.
    • This topic was modified 3 years, 2 months ago by LittleBizzy.

    The page I need help with: [log in to see the link]

Viewing 3 replies - 31 through 33 (of 33 total)
  • Moderator Jan Dembowski


    Forum Moderator and Brute Squad

    I estimate 70% of 1-2 star reviews say “doesn’t work” or similar. My estimate is 90% of those fall into these categories.

    I have not done the math but it’s not really that high. The majority of reviews are fine including the the 1-2 star ones. I’m just putting my thumb in the air as someone who looks at the reviews.

    Here’s where plugin and theme authors have an opportunity.

    1. User has not understood the documentation
    2. User has a valid bug.
    3. The problem actually comes from another plugin

    All of that is valid and can be turned around if you want to take the time to do it. Even if the user never comes back after you try, people do see the attempt and it counts.

    In all cases the user posting the rating and the general community would be better served by the user posting on the help forum first.

    Demonstrate that please. How does that better serve the community as a whole? I mean, I prefer that too but I’m aware that is my preference. I routinely reply to reviews with “Have you considered posting a support topic? <LINK>” and that gets a reply too. Here’s a recent example.

    The user replied. It wasn’t the reply I or an author would have hoped for. The author chimed in too and well.

    No one, including plugin authors, is obligated to provide support or even a reply. Users can just leave a review if they like. Doing it one way or the other doesn’t really change that feedback.

    1. I’m pretty sure it is that high but would not be hard to sample

    2. Again most users don’t come back on replies to bad reviews, easy enough to sample though if you disagree. Also most users just see a plugin rating, with out digging down deeper.

    3. Surely that is obvious, if the support request gets a response the problem is actually fixed. Everyone benefits. If not the user can provide negative feedback. As it currently stands the plugin just gets canned (often unfairly).

    Moderator James Huff


    Volunteer Moderator

    Great feedback so far!

    Let’s not lose sight though that reviews can be edited at any time by the reviewer. This means that a mis-guided 1-star review could be easily turned into a 5-star review with a compassionate and understanding follow-up from the developer (or support personnel). I have seen exactly that happen many times.

    It’s similar to your idea of requiring them to ask for support first, only it already works that way right now. 😉

    I’m not saying it’s right or wrong, just wanted to add that in.

Viewing 3 replies - 31 through 33 (of 33 total)
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