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Where did the Spotlight go?

The spotlight feature on the old website was the source of much confusion and disharmony within the previous community.

The algorithm used to pick the entries often focused on users who had high traffic and therefore some people were only up for a few minutes, and others had two or three entries in the spotlight!

In order to create a better experience for the whole community, the new site now has a 'Popular' tab in the 'Browse' section which will provide a better method for finding interesting images and stories.

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Comments

  • Avatar
    delphwynd

    OK, I'll bite. I've less an idea how an image becomes 'popular' now than how an image was spotlight worthy. Waters, muddied.

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    RichardDonkin

    Well done for tackling this.

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    laurie54

    so the algorithm will now pick the blip that has the most traffic anyway? i sometimes made the spotlight for some reason when i had but 4 or 5 comments but a gorgeous picture. how was that selected? i was always honored to be selected, maybe only for a few minutes - i could tell because i only ended up with a total of maybe thirty views, but still...

    so popular is still popular and the hell with quality?

  • Avatar
    MotherShipton

    I used to hit the spotlight occasionally too and that was always pleased. Now it's just the most popular people over and over again so I shan't be viewing it anymore. Maybe it could at least be the most popular shot in the last 24hrs?

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    sylviacebula

    I don't think the spotlight caused serious conflict or disharmony, it was kind of intriguing trying to understand it, really just a bit of harmless fun, seems a shame it has gone, it was part of what made blip special....

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    mpp26

    I think most people were happy if an image made it into the Spotlight pages, even if it only stayed a short time. And getting an email saying You've hit the Spotlight was always a thrill. I assume now the email facility no longer applies - or do you get an email saying your image is "popular" - I don't think so as one of my images seems to be in Popular, but no email!

    And it was clear when there were only a fixed number of images at one time.

    Now there is just a constant stream of images, the 24 hour thing doesn't apply which is a shame.

    It seems now it's "high traffic" that becomes "popular", so someone with fewer followers who puts up an amazing image has no chance of being recognised.

    There are good things I can see but somehow the feeling isn't quite the same now. Ha it become more of a photographic site, rather than a sharing of life site?

  • Avatar
    laurie54

    I think the final point made by the previous poster was spot on. This has turned into a photographic site and is no longer what it once was, a sharing of one's life - a day at a time. Somehow the ultimate purpose set out by Joe in his vision of Blipfoto has changed. Has HIS vision changed? He told us it was in need of a (wish I could remember those exact words!) brush-up. I know he didn't tell us Blipfoto was going to go into a new direction philosophically, but it seems it has.

    It is entirely disappointing. I have been completely uninspired and unmotivated to take pictures since the site has come back online. It's a shame, too, because within days I expect to celebrate my 4 year consecutive blip streak. I feel like shooting a sewer cover to celebrate.

  • Avatar
    lynnfot

    Old spotlight worked well. Everyone got a shot at it. It was interesting to look at and a great way of finding new journals.
    Algorithm is simpler the new way, I suspect.

  • Avatar
    lynnfot

    .....However, all members were surveyed on this sort of thing before the new site was launched, so maybe the majority weren't interested?

  • Avatar
    SwillinBilly

    Since when were all members surveyed on this sort of thing?

    I certainly wasn't. As a lifetime member who has spent several hours every day on blip for over 3 years. I feel more than a little upset that my input was not asked for.

    And yes the spotlight was controversial. but only controversial to a small minority who didn't get there as often as thought they deserved. I believe that the vast majority of us actually enjoyed it and will miss it greatly.

  • Avatar
    litl

    I liked the old spotlight since it's last revamp when it seemed to go from showing photos with lots of hits to those with more favourites. Perhaps the algorithm was based of the number of subscribers too which gave everyone who posted a good photo a fair chance of hitting the spotlight.

    The current popular page hardly changes. It was much better when a photo appeared for a maximum of 24 hours.

  • Avatar
    mpp26

    I found that with the Popular page too, same photos day after day. I too liked the 24 hour aspect.

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    o1373k

    the 'popular' page is too static, the 24 hour max exposure seems better to reflect the daily aspect of the journal...

  • Avatar
    lynnfot

    I received a survey by email some moths ago asking to comment on various aspects of the website. as far as I know this was sent to everybody?

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    Northeast_Shoot

    Needs to be 24 hour based
    leader board is static and collecting the entire community allocation of favs and has no relationship to quality. How do you get exposure to get on popular
    We require a trending facility I know it was abused by people facing bad images for personal reasons but at least it was current. Large quantity of quality images are never being seen by community so no new followers or following

  • Avatar
    RichardDonkin

    Having seen the results of several days in the "popular" section I'm not at all sure that it's an improvement on what there was before. I agree with those who say it's too static.

  • Avatar
    WharfedaleBex

    It's definitely too static. This is part of why the Blip community feel has disappeared - no-one seems to be there anymore because there is little movement in what you see.

  • Avatar
    WharfedaleBex

    And just to add... Page 1 and 2 currently has 2 entries each from two people so your comment about multiple images from the same person is still a problem (if you see it that way). It seems to be just a Spotlight for the week instead of for the day. How about a Popular being for the day and a Trending for the week? It is nice to look at what's been going on as a catchup but not when you're hoping to find something new.

  • Avatar
    WharfedaleBex

    Oops sorry. One person has three. I hadn't actually noticed that until you pointed out you were trying to prevent it and it wouldn't actually worry me if there was a faster turnover. Maybe Highlights is a better word than Popular?

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    RichardDonkin

    It really needs thinking through. I like the idea of trending pics. Everyone likes to see nice pics and the good photographers deserve to have their stuff showcased but the mix here isn't quite right yet. Maybe it can't be achieved in a single gallery.

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    Jerra

    What concerns me with the popular idea is that if it goes on the number of "hits" a photo has it is fairly easy to arrange. Visit lots of people, give as many stars and favourites as possible and you will get a lot of return visits.

    Play the game and you can become popular.

  • Avatar
    Kit267

    I think the popular page is too static and should be like the spotlight in being 24 hours, that also takes into account differences in daily traffic too.

  • Avatar
    Arachne

    Another vote for making the 'Popular' turnover faster - I liked 24 hours - and adjusting the algorithm - I'd like to see pictures from blippers who don't have masses of subscribers or masses of hearts. I never used to look at 'Rated' (or whatever it was called) because it didn't change but I liked the distinction between daily Spotlight (in the newer version that allowed for more variety) and weekly Favourites.

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    Vodkaman

    I have always liked spotlight, it is probably the main feature that I miss. I still think it needs more tweaking of the algorithm between the stars and hearts though.

    The new popular feature is certainly not a replacement, more an equivalent of the old favorites feature, which needed something very special to get on to. The problem is that the page is static, hardly changing at all from one day to the next. Spotlight was dynamic, changing from one visit to the next.

    Call it what you like, but it needs to be 24 hours and limited to two pages. There is no joy being featured on page 14!

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    grace

    With the last algorithm before the changes many more people had a chance at a moment in the sun, even my modest efforts on occasion, much to my surprise. It was worth checking regularly to find unknown Blippers who had really caught a moment or touched the heartstrings. Whatever that algorithm was I'd like it back.

  • Avatar
    delphwynd

    "... the new site now has a 'Popular' tab in the 'Browse' section which will provide a better method for finding interesting images and stories."

    No mention of 'photgographs' in the introduction there, and, having just had a browse through the new section, seeing a number of Photoshopped entries in there, is this the way forward for Blipfoto?

    If so, for all of the photographers that have built up their journals on the original ethos behind the site, on the understanding it was a photographic journal, that seems a bit of a kick in the teeth and looks like there will be less a chance to have their photography seen and appreciated.

  • Avatar
    andmoff

    It's bit of a shame Spotlight has gone as it had actually settled down to something interesting, except the twice I got on it ;) still not worked out how, but in all seriousness it did get a bit like Forest Gump's chocolate box. Now we have "Popular" which from what I can see is just back to the same old same old that had people irritated about the old Spotlight.

    I couldn't agree more with DW above, especially his last paragraph, the usual suspects have their audience and that will help keep them "popular" everybody else will watch their shots slide off the front page in 20 seconds, especially the "interesting" ones I did see crop up now and again on the old spotlight.

    Also to pick you up on the top piece, there is no "previous community", this is it, we're still here......

  • Avatar
    Ingeborg

    Why does the algorithm not take into the account that people with a large amount of subscribers/followers have more chance of 'high traffic', views, stars, faves than people with a small amount of subscribers? Flickr does just that and that means that everybody has a chance to get their best images being spotlighted.

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    Vodkaman

    Ingeborg - that makes sense and would be the way I would do the calculation. It would be nice to get some feedback on this algorithm thing.

    Of course, first, we have to get the spotlight feature back!

  • Avatar
    Zimmt54

    The explaination is lame. Bringback the Spotlight!