Adding Blog Posts to TheTopTens

admin For a few years now, we have allowed members of TheTopTens to add blog posts to the site so they can add more commentary or voice their opinion beyond what is available through list comments. Instead of simply stating why they voted for a particular item in a list, blog posts gave visitors the ability to expand on their comments, explain why they did not vote for certain items, or voice their opinion on the list as a whole. It also gave visitors an avenue for sharing their expertise on the list topic by providing information that could be helpful to future voters.

Today, we are looking to expand the blogging functionality by making it possible for anyone to add a post, not just members of the site. Because of this, we felt it would be a good time to publish some guidelines and explain more about how posts work on TheTopTens.

For starters, not all blog posts on the site are treated the same. We review each post and classify them as high quality, low quality, and spam. High quality posts are linked to from list pages in the "Blog Posts About This List" section and are included on the New Blogs page when they get approved. Low quality posts do not get linked to from these pages and are tagged with the noindex meta tag. This instructs search engines to not include the post in their search results with the rationale being that having a lot of low quality pages from TheTopTens included in the search index hurts the overall quality of the site. Lastly, spam posts are deleted.

So this begs the question, how do we classify each type of post? The answer is that there is no solid rule in place since quality is a subjective thing. Instead we look at a few criteria when making the decision that we have listed below.

Post Length - The question we ask ourselves here is, is this post long enough to justify having it's own page on the site? In our opinion, if a post only consists of a few sentences, the answer is no. A better length would be a minimum of 2-3 paragraphs and around 400 words.

Post Formatting - And while we're talking about sentences and paragraphs, note that high quality posts make use of them. Proper formatting makes a post easier to read and in turn, more likely to be approved.

Correct Spelling - A few misspelled words won't automatically cause a post to be marked as low quality, but so many that it makes a post hard to read will. This includes text-speak and shorthand words.

Proper Grammar - As is the case with spelling, we're not going to comb through posts with our old English textbooks at our fingertips looking for every little infraction, but we also aren't going to mark a post as high quality if it is so poorly written that it becomes difficult to read.

Original Content - Even if the length and formatting is correct, a post will not be marked as high quality if it has been taken from another source, even if there is attribution. Aside from the fact that we want to avoid publishing copy written content, TheTopTens is a search engine driven website and duplicate content can hurt search rankings.

Excessive Linking - A post containing a large number of links (more than what is necessary to support the content of the post) will likely be considered spam and will be removed form the site entirely. This is especially true of of posts whose sole purpose is to create links designed to increase the rankings of another website.

Vulgarity, Profanity, and Other Offensive Content - Pretty much speaks for itself. Keep it PG and we'll keep it on the site.

Hopefully none of this seems too strict since it is not our intention to dissuade people from sharing their opinion. We simply want to make sure everyone has a good experience with the site.

Comments

Ok, thank you for this information. - Pony

Yeah nice to know admin - Batmaniscole

What about links to other posts within TheTopTens? Are they allowed? Like 4 of them? - visitor

That's perfectly fine if they are useful to readers of the post. - admin

Good, now I know. - visitor

How will you tell whether a post is marked as "high-quality" beyond the acheivements on your page? - WonkeyDude98

High quality posts will be linked to from the list that they are associated with in the Posts section. - admin

Man... I'll be making more high quality lists... time for more high quality posts! - Skullkid755

Thanks! I hope this will help me get my Sword Art Online anime review approved by making it high quality! - ModernSpongeBobSucks

What about dividing a very long post into pages? I have realized that a really long post that is as long as the Terms of Use of the site and a short post comprised of 4 paragraphs are both considered HQ-posts as they were able to completely justify having their own page on the site. If the post is of high qualiy, even if it is a single post that could be divided into 4 HQ posts, will there be a feature that could count it as 4HQ posts instead of one? Because I have realized that the HQ-feature of posts can now be exploited for stats. - visitor

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