I don't go around looking for Hubs to flag, but when I come across something with glaring issues I try to be a good HP citizen and alert staff. They have, after all, continuously preached about the importance of quality
Last week I flagged two Hubs with major issues. The kinds of issues that make a visitor go away and never click on a HubPages link again. No action was taken on either. This, unfortunately, has become pretty much par for the course when I flag a Hub, which makes me wonder why I even bother.
As site-wide traffic continues to decline it is becoming more and more worrisome to me that HP is so focused on the HubPro program (which is aimed at Hubs Google already likes) that they are ignoring the real problem, which is the backlog of low-quality Hubs that are presently visible to search.
The Panda algorithm penalizes sites with low-quality content, so it is unrealistic to expect HP to recover by editing already acceptable Hubs and not also addressing the very Hubs that are causing the issue.
It really seems the time (and salaries) of these editors would be better spent by sending them off on a quest to find all of the old, entrenched low-quality Hubs rather than having them muck with already successful Hubs. If things were rosy on HP it would be different, but as it stands it seems like HubPro focuses on polishing the silverware while the rest of the dining room is in shambles.
As someone who has had a little luck on this site I often feel like I should give back more often. That is, participate more, offer more feedback and do more to help newbies. When it seems like HP isn't paying attention to flags, or listening to the concerns of the many, many veteran Hubbers who have voiced their opinions on the backlog of poor content and the future of the site, it seems kind of pointless.
I still believe HP is a strong site, and I do not believe the sky is falling just yet. I don't believe all is lost, and I think HP can climb out of this hole if they want to. However, to put it bluntly, I also think HP is focusing on all the wrong things if they really want that to happen.
I agree with you completely and I'm so glad you posted this.
The items you address have been brought up many times on the forum. Maybe when HP really wants to improve its traffic, it will listen.
Each and every report is reviewed by a moderator to see if it violates the sites rules. If it does not, then the flag is removed.
Some content is grandfathered in under previous site standards.
Such Hubs are subjected to the current site standards, rules, QAP, etc. once they are edited.
So you "grandfather" in worthless crap presumably because it makes instant money for HP. At the same time you raise two fingers (hmmm, UK expression, one finger in the US I believe?) at people trying to bring said excrement to your notice.
Simultaneously, you censor carefully crafted articles by qualified people with extensive experience in the field concerned because they do not garner some artificially generated number of views.
WOW! Really the way to build authority to your site, HP, NOT!
"Some content is grandfathered in under previous site standards."
"Such Hubs are subjected to the current site standards, rules, QAP, etc. once they are edited."
Surely the time for this grandfathering is well and truly past. Why preserve crap on the site. Why punish authors who edit their hubs to improve the overall quality of the site to try to save it, and leave the lazy author untouched. Please change this ridiculous policy which is damaging the site. Not applying rules until the author edits a hub is silly. Who does it benefit? Why?
There are thousands of old pages that have 2-20 times the number of affiliate ads per 100 words that the current rule permits (1 per 100). The same rule should apply to ALL HUBS. So old pages don't get even QAP-ed until they are edited by the author. Flagging old hubs that break the rules is a waste of time because HP won't apply the rules until they are edited!!! Come on!!! Get Real!!! Show that HP is really serious about improving quality. Most authors have worked very hard to improve their old hubs. This is a slap in their faces - flagging is a useless exercise, a waste of time!! Traffic is declining!!! Please change this policy.
Maybe you need to change some of the rules, such as putting time limits on how often people must be active on the site and make it retroactive.
Someone who comes here, produces one or two hubs and then never returns ought to have their work and their account deleted. Most probably do not even remember that they have content here.
Furthermore, the moderators ought to go back and put every single article through the QAP that has not already been looked at.
If you really want to raise HP up, these are some ways you can do it.
I agree. I don't think HP will get forgiveness from Panda if the crap is not removed. Apply the rules to all via de-indexing using a simple program would be very cheap to implement and fast. Why not?
I think I disagree with part of this. I think that if someone comes and writes a couple of wonderful hubs, there is no reason to require them to log in to keep the hubs published. It is the quality of the hub that should be the deciding factor, not how active the author is.
It is interesting that many of the '100 hubbber score' authors are inactive. See http://hubpages.com/authors/best/. Many have not written, nor updated their hubs for 2 years or more. Many of their hubs may break the new rules, but these will not be applied if the author does not edit the hub. Why does this matter? The order in which hubs are listed on the topic pages, and in the 'Related hubs' and 'Recommended hubs' listings, etc, depends on hubberscore. So rule breakers and inactive hubbers who don't edit their hubs get priority in these listings - I don't think that is fair. Do you? If these authors edited their hubs their hubber scores could well drop after QAP etc. HP rewards inactivity! HP could well be promoting hubs that break its own rules. What does Google think? Sad!
I can't argue with that except for one thing: I've noticed that if I stop being active, even for a few days, my hubber score falls...so how can dormant hubs be rated at 100??
If they remain published, are well written, rich in content and media and getting lots of views, the Hubs are not dormant and the Hub score can remain high. When it comes to Hubber score, the algo just seems to love certain members. Perhaps the quality of their hubs alone is enough to keep their Hubber score up. Who knows?
Because a lot of older Hubs didn't go through the same QAP that newer Hubs had to pass.
(I don't think the Hubber Score has anything to do with being active on the site. It mostly has to do with overall Hub Scores. Traffic doesn't even come in to the equation now, which I find is truly bizarre. So, many Hubs with 100 scores are not rated well on Google and don't get search engine traffic.)
It's odd, but I left for six months, didn't log in at all. When I returned, my hubber score was 100. It stayed that way for about a month of moderate activity, then declined to the mid to high 90s.
I agree with many of the comments on this grandfathering policy. But I also want to state that some of the Hubs I flag should have nothing to do with old policies. As far as I remember, it was never an HP policy to allow glaring grammar and spelling errors.
I don't flag Hubs for common mistakes. We all make errors and typos. But in some cases it really seems like HP needs to take action on the exceptionally bad content.
In one case I flagged a Hub with a serious but almost comical error in the title. (The Hub was also too short and contained other errors, but that's not why I flagged it.) I'm not talking about its vs it's or their vs there. The author clearly didn't know how to spell the very subject they were writing about. In fact, they had substituted two completely unrelated but phonetically similar words for the one word they were looking for.
Were these words spelled correctly? Taken on their own, technically, yes. But, within the context of the Hub title, it should be very clear to any human reader than this Hubber, at least based on this evidence, is walking the dangerous edge of illiteracy. They went on to use the same two incorrect words (instead of another totally unrelated word) a dozen times throughout the Hub.
Any unfortunate visitor who stumbled over this Hub would likely do a double take, then have a good, long laugh. Right before hitting the back button and never trusting an HP Hub ever again.
Again, we all make mistakes, but good grief! So, why wouldn't a human moderator look at this Hub and unfeature it? If this writer is still paying attention to their HP account, they could simply fix their error and it would (probably) pass QAP with no problem.
If they still didn't understand what was wrong with their Hub they could have come to forum and Hubbers would have told them, to paraphrase Inigo Montoya, I don't think those words mean what you think they mean.
There's a hub that appears at the top of Related Hubs on one of my hubs that has pixelated images, no proper headings and uses only one text capsule.
I've reported this hub many times, but it nevertheless remains featured and at the top of the Related Hubs list on my hub.
The hub may have been 'grandfathered in', but it was last updated on October 1, 2014. Its summary, which was keyword stuffed when I first spotted and reported it last April, has now also been edited - this obviously wouldn't count as an 'update'.
So, is a hub like this actually of an acceptable quality?
What do youmean by grandfathered? Sorry i still can't figure out what you guys are squabbling about. Pls enlighten me so that i can join in
What it means that old rules apply for old hubs. New rules only apply for new hubs. When the new rules were introduced, such as the number of affiliates per capsule (now 2) and for the number of words (now 1 ad for each 100 words), they only applied to hubs published after that date. Essentially what it means is that old hubs that break the rules do not have to be changed unless and until they are edited. So HP allows old hubs to remain on the site even though they break the rules (20,30 40 affiliate ads). Most old hubs have also not been through QAP, which is only done if they are edited (so other rating system applies).
So if you report an old hub, chances are nothing will happen because they are 'grandfathered' - immune from new rules. Very Weird!!
I am beginning to see the wisdom of your concern. I see hub after hub with very few words, too many ads, poor quality, etc. It's discouraging to those of us who are making a supreme effort. If I don't have time to publish a worthwhile hub, I just don't. Makes me wonder if these short, low quality hubs are proving financially beneficial. Even worse, some of the hubbers have high scores. Go figure! I wished I could eliminate my score. It's irrelevant! Getting true information about current stats on hubs and hubbers is also a challenge. I think our leadership is facing some real challenges.
I totally agree--especially about the seemingly poor choice of resource use with the Hub Pro program.
I have flagged a few hubs when I have seen, as you say, "glaring problems." However, the only result seems to be the automated pop-up dialog box telling you, "We're on it!" and...they obviously are NOT.
Frustrating, to be sure.
I used to flag hubs for the following reasons: if the English was so poor as to be incomprehensible, if there was minimal content (less than 100 words!), if images were pixelated or watermarked, if images or text were obviously stolen (in which case I would take the trouble to identify the source and cite that in my report), if the hub was obviously over-promotional with numerous links back to one sales site.
However, I then got the following information about my activity:
"Historically, 30% of your moderation reports have resulted in a moderation"
So basically, I had been wasting my time in 70% of cases, because Hubpages had not bothered to take any action despite the reported hubs being flagrantly in violation of quality standards.
I no longer bother to flag anything. In fact, I don't bother to do anything much on here any more.
Mine says 48%, so I'm not bothering reporting them anymore either. It just amounts to a waste of my precious time if they don't do anything anyway.
As I have said before, the only way to get a hub taken down for glaring issues is to get one or two more folks to flag them. It is a pain, but ask another hubber to look at the hub. When it gets flagged two or three times, it will be gone. I don't know why this issue remains. I agree with all hubbers who have taken the time to question this problem. Many of these hubbers have experience with SEO, bring in good money to the site and work hard to flag as one of the duties. Google has stated that an issue with this site is lean content.
48% does not sound so bad, that is almost half of the time. I don't think that is a waste. I don't really follow up on hubs I flag. If they deserve a flag, I give them one. I figure, that way, I have done my part.
I agree, flagging and reporting is a complete waste of time if HP refuses to apply its own rules to ALL hubs. I'm out!
How do you get the info about response rates? I have long suspected mine was under 50%, and that if you go under a certain level your flags are ignored, but would be interested to know for sure.
It comes in that weekly email they send. The text starts with a summary of your account views etc. Immediately under that there is a section called "your moderation reports" which tells you how many of your flags have had any effect and gives an overall percentage for all the reports you have ever submitted. I think this section only appears if you have flagged within the past week.
That's very interesting. I opted out of all HP email auto-notifications and newsletters because I didn't think they offered any info I couldn't find on the site. It would be nice if they included a moderation report on our account page so we didn't have to subscribe to the emails to see it.
Ah, I haven't looked at that in a while. Thanks for explaining.
I'm curious about something. When you get that email that says historically x% of your reports etc. Do they only count the first person that reported a problem? For example I flag bad questions when I see them that are purely spam and they are always removed, but my percentage of removed is low as well. It makes me wonder if only the first person to report gets "credit" for that removal? Anyone know?
I'm not sure how that percentage is calculated, but I am pretty sure that it is not accurate. Mine started at a certain number, then every week it tells me how many I reported and how many got unpublished. There have been very few that did not get unpublished, since I only report the really bad things. Yet, every week that percentage goes down, even when 100% of the stuff I reported got unpublished.
I ignore the percentage because it is wrong and use the numbers reported/unpublished as my indication on whether my flagging does any good.
I do remember it saying somewhere that they ignore you if your flagging number is low. I certainly hope they aren't using that percentage as their indication.
Is there any time cut-off at all for these grandfathered articles, or are they allowed to be published forever as long as they are never edited?
I must admit that many of my articles have too many products and need to be overhauled, but so far I have chosen not to make the time to do so. I am lazy, a procrastinator, and also busy with other aspects of my life. Also, I was assuming they would be de-indexed at some point if they were not brought up to comply with the current policy.
However, if there was a deadline to fix my articles or face unpublishing, you can bet I would find the time and motivation to fix them. Why not give people like me a kick in the butt to do what needs to be done? Then, once the deadline passes, all the junky articles by people who have abandoned their accounts could be unpublished. Two birds, one stone and all that.
The people who wrote articles years ago and haven't logged in for years are never going to come back and fix their stuff. It will be here forever unless HP makes an effort to remove it.
Reading that old hubs that were written under different rules gets a pass is disturbing to me. I notice each time I make a change in an older hub (most of my hubs are older), it just makes more problems for me. I see hubs much shorter than mine filled with Amazon capsules, and I have 3,000 word hubs that get the "spammy" message for two or three Amazon capsules. I realize that the product must have to do with the topic of the hub, but believe that is sometimes misunderstood by the staff. If the person judging your hub is not as knowledgeable about your subject as you are, they don't understand the relevance of the Amazon product to the hub.
I too have stopped flagging for the reasons stated by the O.P. It's a waste of time. We have been trying to help bring up the standards for years but if HP don't listen, that's their own downfall.
That is the biggest mistake HP is making. For how long are they going to keep up this non-sense rule of "once they are edited"?
Please submit all hubs, edited or not to the current site standards, rules, QAP, etc.
For some reason democracy gets tossed out the window online in many ways. The politics of the entire internet is the domain of "oligarchy". Why? Power corrupts and personal viewpoints will then rule over democracy.
I never flagged a Hub. It appears to me unbelievable that someone is capable of flagging others articles, unless they are very insulting, bullying you or discriminating. But if they are not, what the hack has gotten into your head to flag an article? Some thought slipped into my mind, and that this feels to me like a kind of traitor mentality.
Most people who report Hubs are doing so to remove spam from the site and to improve the overall quality of the site in the eyes of Google. The moderators look at the quality of the individual Hub when reviewing a report, not the Hubber who wrote it.
As Google and other search engines tighten the screws on their opinions of quality, it is increasingly more important that HP removes spammy Hubs from the site. The fact that HP allows older, spammy Hubs to remain featured hurts us all.
There's also plagiarism to flag. I'd think most writers understand why plagiarism needs to be flagged, even if it isn't their own work being stolen. What is traitorous about reporting a thief? Isn't it traitorous to the author to not report plagiarism when you see it?
It isn't OK to insult or bully others, either, or to use hate speech in anything but a historical or fictional context. I plan to report those again if I should see them again.
Then there may be hubs that have blocks of nonsense text that clearly came through a content spinner program. They look sort of like this:
There may also be hubs that have more grammatical errors than sentences. While it may seem mean to flag them, Google does look at HubPages as a whole and downgrades it for having things like that on it. An example of something like that might look something like this:
Additionally, there may be hubs that give inaccurate and potentially dangerous information. If a hub were to seriously advise people to inflate their car tires to 300 psi, you should probably flag it. If a hub were to advise kidney transplant recipients to throw out their anti-rejection drugs, you should probably flag it.
You gotta be kidding me. Traitor to whom? Not to the site. When low-quality content is removed it is better for HubPages. Not to the authors. When low-quality content is removed it is better for everybody's traffic and earnings. Not to you. Whether you think so or not, HubPages quality controls and the efforts of your fellow Hubbers to help police the site help you get more traffic and earn more money.
It doesn't even hurt the Hubber who owns the content, because if they are paying attention they have an opportunity to fix and resubmit their Hub before it is even de-indexed by search.
I work hard on my content here, like many people. Why would I turn a blind eye to something that could derail my efforts (and everyone else's) and potentially harm the site? To me, doing THAT is unbelievable.
Hubbers are not on a team that is fighting the admin with the prime goal of trying to break the rules. We are on team "content" that is trying to make money and crappy content is what betrays us.
It is less like betrayal and more like calling noise control when your asshole neighbor is playing jet-engine loud music at 2 in the morning. I am not at all embarrassed to say that I am part of the Hubpages "neighborhood watch".
All your explanations are fine with me, but it doesn't change the fact that you're betraying another Hubber. You're hiding yourselves behind seemingly well-intentioned moral reasons like getting rid of content you don't like. And again I'm not speaking about hate speech, discrimination or bullying.
Who here is deciding what is good content? You Don't make me laugh! Can someone then explain me where Hubber score are for? Or is it only meant to fill up a crappy ego? I hope not.
No one of you decides what is good or bad content...
Google decides, and we are using Google's guidelines to flag spam. Do you want HP to go out of business? Allowing spam to stay is what is going to kill this site.
I think it's traitorous to stand by and allow plagiarists to steal and then benefit from the work of a fellow writer. It also gives the site itself a deserved reputation for hosting plagiarists.
I think it's traitorous to our fellow hubbers to stand by and allow content spinners to ruin a website for all of the earnest writers here doing their best. If the site fails because Google sees it as a spun trash receptacle, yes, it ruins the site for everyone.
I think it's traitorous to the human species to not report dangerously inaccurate information such as bad medical advice or potentially physically or financially injurious technical or mechanical advice. If one person takes bad advice and gets hurt, it's utterly unacceptable.
I don't go hunting for bad stuff. The page HP sends me to when I sign in is the feed. Every now and again, a hub that is plagiarism, spun content, hate speech, or otherwise unacceptable pops up in there. Am I supposed to ignore it?
Isn't allowing that trash to be on HubPages a sign one doesn't actually care about the writers here of all sorts of skill levels who are, indeed, really trying to make a go of it? Why care more about plagiarists, hate speakers, article spinners, bot marketers, and folks not really even trying than about everyone else who takes pride in their work? What makes the thieves, spinners, and unethical marketers more deserving of respect than the earnest people trying to write here?
BuildReps: Now come on! You're an intelligent guy! Surely you know who determines good from bad...GOOGLE.
You think that reporting another person's hub is a betrayal...well, when someone comes onto this site and blatantly violates the rules (which are in place, by the way, to please Google and keep this site up and running so that all of us can make a few bucks)...THAT is a betrayal of every person here who is trying to do things the right way.
Let me ask you something: If you were a surgeon who knew a fellow surgeon was blatantly damaging patients by his sloppiness while in surgery, would you consider it a betrayal to report him? Or would you rather say nothing and let his patients suffer and die?
Basically, although the two scenarios are different, they actually are the same in concept. Someone who betrays his fellow writers with his slovenly, illegal and unorthodox writing is actually working to kill this site and the work of every person on it.
Do you still think that flagging is a betrayal? And have you not seen the very specific guidelines that Google (and HP) have put online to let us know what is and what is not acceptable?
Let's get real. People who betray us are not our colleagues or friends. What they are doing is hurting us, and if flagging helps to stop them from doing so, GOOD!
I agree with you TimeTraveller.
Though it does not appear on priority lists and in the general picture, the low quality of hubs on HP will ultimately be an undoing that could be avoided, even now.
I sent a second email to the team about all of this and was surprised to hear Matt say that the team does not ban "all" profanity but will remove ads or do more when things go too far.
I was surprised to hear this and have asked him for a clarification that all writers can use as a guideline!
At this point in time I think it's a real balancing act for the team because they need revenue but also want to please Google. I'm not sure they'll be able to win this one unless all of us here take great care with our wordage.
I don't know know why they don't understand about the bad sites. I thought they said they would rather concentrate on making the good ones better and use Hub Pro. They already lost on that one. Maybe they don't have adequate staff to work on the bad hubs or even monitor the flags. I wish them luck, as they have a lot to do. I flagged a site once that was the worst I have ever seen, written with no sentences and by an admitted retarded writer. It was the work of about a first grader, and had been up a while. It was a few years ago, and the site is better now.
My guess is that HP have a quota for QAPing via mturk. Obviously doing 50,000 or so would be expensive. So, at times when few new hubs need to be checked, they do a few old ones. This limit also has other consequences. In really busy times they have to let a few slip through with a cursory software check. But this leaves thousand of 'bad apples' tainting the site for everyone. Panda reacts to bad apples, despite average quality for viewed hubs being improved.
BUT this does no explain why HP cannot run checks to find rule breakers, such as too many affiliate ads, irrelevant links etc. This can be done using software. It would simply un-feature hubs that broke the rules. Many of these are old hubs and would simply lay dormant. So there would be few extra demands on QAP. Once again the checks whether the fix was done could be done using software checks for 'no more than 1 affiliate ad per 100 words'. The grandfathering stance is ridiculous - it protects the rule breakers that are damaging the site. Many of these hubs date from 2011 and older. The 'no action until edit rule', applied for hubs that have not be edited in over 4 years!!!! is Ridiculous IMO. HP could do a lot more to remove the bad stuff while trying to improve average quality via Hubpro. IMO. PS my reporting success rate this week was ZERO - no action taken!!!
And yes, Hubber score is only for ego and to make HP more "engaging" for the writers.
In that case I would like to see statistics about the alleged spammers, otherwise you're nothing better than a bunch of demagogues. Good luck with your intentionally wrong discussion here
One of the hubs on my feed right now starts out like this:
"Buying brief and additionally quick resolution to shed extra pounds that allows you to ride in which usually black outfits on your needs and desires or even to realize any pre-pregnancy work? Various quality diets nowadays really are promising seriously rapid loss of weight consequences."
The rest of it is no better.
If you want to see how bad some of the crap is just hop a few hubs. If you hate the rules here so much that you consider being held to them unfair, you may just be in the wrong place.
A simple way to find old hubs that break the amazon product rules
=> the maximum number of keyword-based products that can be listed per capsule have been reduced to two as of April 2013.
=> only one product per 100 words (2015?)
=> related and not purely promotional (2014?)
is to use the search tool at the top of the page!!!!!!
e.g. "toys 2011 amazon" "decorations 2011" etc.
If you scroll through you will find heaps of rule breakers. Come on HP they are easy to find. Please apply your rules to ALL hubs for the sake of the site and the community. Authors have had years to comply. Panda 5 is coming soon. Get on board.
Hey Matthew, Where are you?
The community wants old, unedited spammy hubs off the site.
Are you listening?
Who has the last word on quality here? Flaggers? I'm not wondering why HP doesn't pay attention to flags regarding the quality of the discussion here.
What made those hubs low quality? their content or your opinion on their content? pls explain
Hubpages rules (see the "help" link for a description of those rules) as enforced by their staff, that is what makes it low quality.
I am pretty forgiving in my flagging. If a person has made an honest effort, I would never flag their hub. The only hubs I have flagged are obvious spam, or spun content.
I always appreciate the communities desire to improve. We share it.
There are several processes we use for getting spam and low quality content de-indexed shortly after it's published. Quality raters sample the site so we can see how we are doing. We still have room to improve with getting spam out, but we have made really nice improvements. A huge portion of our resources go to fighting spam.
Our average view weighted quality score of a featured Hub is steadily increasing and the amount of spam is on it's way down. Over the last several months, we have de-indexed about a net negative 15K hubs a month (many with spam issues). Our standards have been raised and we are working on adding more resources to this. Hubbers with low quality and spammy content have a much more difficult time staying featured. Flagging helps (I do it often).
At the same time we have edited over 30% of views that come from search. The satisfaction from readers is steadily increasing.
Our plan is to make steady progress and refine our processes. Low quality content shouldn't be featured, new and edited content gets consistent reviews and content that is widely read get's improved.
Hubbers can help by editing their own Hubs, flagging and helping the community as we all work to improve HubPages to ensure we are around for many years to come.
Thank to everyone that posted suggestions. I read them all and took notes:)
I'm confused, Paul. If the goal is to get rid of spammy content, then why stop at just de-indexing them? Why not give those writers the boot and ban them? That way, the crap content would be just plain gone, and not clogging up the site (and your servers) by staying here, for other hubbers to continue stumbling across....
Thank you, Paul, for your optimistic reply.
I too always appreciate the community's and the staff's desire to improve.
"once they are edited"
We have been hammering on this for years and staff still fail to see the insanity of this policy. The majority of those mediocre grandfathered hubs will never get edited because they belong to abandoned accounts.
New Rules Suggestion
1. Put into place a 6 monthly mandatory update for every hub published.
2. Review / delete all accounts with no activity for over 6 months.
Get Your Priorities Right
Implementing those rules would, of course, take time and resources away from all the design changes which staff seem to enjoy working on so much. But are those fancy design tweaks really more important than cleaning up the mess?
I agree..and that process could also be automated--i.e., the deletion of inactive accounts, so in reality, it would not take that much staff time. Whatever small amount of time it would take the programmers to write the code, that's all...
But, as far as the mandatory updating of older hubs; not always possible. I have several for which the information does not change because history does not (usually) change....(unless some politician decides to re-write things to suit themselves!)
I think simply deleting abandoned accounts would go a long way toward cleaning up the current mess.
Sorry Sue, but I would hate to see any kind of time frames being key criteria associated with being unpublished. It shouldn't be necessary to edit a really good hub every six months, and I'm sure lots of people with busy lives may go for lengthy periods without even checking their hubs or logging into their account.
If hubs are to be deleted or hubber accounts ended, I'd hope it would be for better reasons than just 'not being active'.
Perhaps the 6-months time frame is a bit extreme--I've been inactive for almost that long for a while...when my husband was going through a bad spell with his health.
That said, I'm guessing it's a pretty safe bet that anyone who has shown zero activity at all--whether writing hubs, being in the forums or commenting on others' posts--for a year or longer, is probably gone and not coming back.
Courtesy would demand an e-mail (automated, of course, to take load off staff) be sent as a 'fair warning' to such accounts, and given say, 30 days to come back and return to activity, or be deleted.
I realize people leave for various reasons, and not all those who leave have created spammy, worthless hubs, but many do. Many who simply leave for what they perceive to be 'greener pastures' also delete their own work and take it to whatever new site they have chosen.
Yes, it's a bit of a mess and a quandary, but I do believe it should be addressed.
I'd hate to see a six-month threshold applied. The whole concept of HubPages is passive income and in the past, I've often told a disgruntled Hubber to take a few months off because their Hubs will look after themselves.
I'm still a bit perplexed about which Hubs, exactly, are "grandfathered".
- The Squidoo probation period has long since lapsed so I believe those aren't grandfathered any more.
- All Hubs, even old ones, are subject to unFeaturing for lack of traffic (as I know well!).
- All Hubs, even old ones, have to meet any new rules introduced since they were written, such as the limit on Amazon capsules (again, I know this from experience!).
So when the word "grandfathered" is used, it would apply only to old Hubs that meet all the current rules and are getting good traffic from Google (which suggests Google doesn't have a problem with them, no matter what we may think).
Old hubs only have to meet the new rules if they are edited. Tat is the problem.
That's not true. Think back to when all the new rules were introduced post-Panda - the automated filters applied to ALL Hubs, to the point where some people had whole accounts unpublished.
Ever since, the same thing has happened every time a new automated rule has been introduced. The automated filters are run across all Hubs regardless of age. So for instance, when the new limits on words per Amazon capsule was introduced, old Hubs that exceeded that limit were unpublished. That's why there was such a furore when the Squidoo lenses came over - they were protected from the filters, when all our existing Hubs were not.
The one thing that doesn't apply to old Hubs is QAP. At one time, we were told old Hubs would be put through QAP eventually, but I suspect the manpower just isn't available.
It's the "once they are edited" bit we all object to. It means that if those old hubs are left as they are (unedited) they bypass all current site standard rules.
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