I was scrolling through the featured hubs and clicked on the "Pets" Popular featured hubs page. I had noticed there was a paragraph at the top before, but never bothered to read it. When I did, I was mortified.
It reads like 3rd grade book report on why people would want to write or read about animals:
"Pets & Animals are kept by many people as companions – the most common being cats and dogs. Other mammals make good pets, like rabbits, guinea pigs, gerbils, and hamsters. Some people keep reptiles, amphibians, and fish in tanks or other enclosures. Others have birds in cages. The first domesticated, or tame, animals were kept by ancient people since about 2000 BC, but we are interested in animals in general and love to learn more about them, including extinct prehistoric animals. We want to be aware of wild animals and insects in our environment. With our pets, there are questions about how to choose them, how to care for and feed them. We trust the veterinarian, but some matters can be handled without paying for advice. Fellow animal lovers offer advice and encouragement in situations where the owner can use others’ expertise to make improvements in their pet’s life."
Reading just the first 2 sentences would make me click away.
The last two sentences would make me think this is no place to get any serious advice.
We sound like a hen party sharing stories about our pets we keep in tanks or other enclosures. Lots of professionals write on this site under this subject matter Please have someone fix or remove this introduction to Pets and Animals.
I've read those blurbs with horror as well. It's like 2009-esque SEO word vomit.
Oh - the horror of it all. I just received a notice: "We thought that you would like to know that xxxxxxx, a Hubber who you are following, just asked asked the Question:"
The "thats" can be dropped. One "asked" can be dropped.
We are working on revamping the topic pages right now. If you go through a few of the others, you'll notice that they are slowly being replaced. For example, here's one we just finished: http://hubpages.com/games-hobbies
That reads better, but it's a pretty bleak long page of words. If I am looking for fun and games, I want to see something funny and engaging. I would like away from that page immediately. Sorry... JMHO
Edit: Maybe commission some drawings from Mr. Ewbie!
We have specific guidelines on writing the topic pages, but I appreciate the feedback.
I think one of your guidelines is engaging images. Everything I have read from HP HQ says break it up and catch your reader with an alluring image.
All of these landing pages are bleak. We need something that says - "You have finally arrived at the best culmination of articles on every and any topic - You never want to leave this land! Everything you ever wanted to know lies here...isn't it obvious by the names of the articles and these delicious images...?"
That is what I look for. Really professional "hip" images keep me looking around.
+1 Awesome idea! I used one of Mark Ewbie's drawings for a hub and it is delightful, fits in quite well. Mark is very talented.
Can you bump Fashion up to the top of the rewrite list? Here is the first sentence
"Since the emergence of homo sapiens people, have been collecting pretty shells to wear, applying color to their faces, and checking their reflections in pools of water."
That misplaced comma is killing me. Travel is especially bad:
"Travel and Places is a topic concerned with the movement of people between relatively distant geographical places for any purpose and any duration, usually involving a means of transport."
It sounds like a robot's fourth grade book report on the dictionary.
"slowly being replaced"
There are thousands of competent writers here who would gladly help revamp descriptions on the topic pages. You could post this as a volunteer writing challenge, choose (or let people vote on) the best entries and provide an accolade that designates their contribution.
What helps the site, helps us as well. If the objective is to improve traffic, improvement on these topic pages is a great way to start.
I like this.
+1 You are spot on, Peg. Very good point to bring up.
I doubt they'd ever do this. If they viewed any of us here as competent writers, they'd take advantage of the enormous talent pool they have at their fingertips and do things like what you suggest all the time.
I really like this idea! I will bring it up to the team. Hubbers wrote most of the topic pages years ago, but I think we can do a lot better. I really appreciate the offer, Peg. I know there are many Hubbers that would do a great job at writing these.
Wow. I did not expect this response at all. This is really refreshing.
+1 Yaaay, Robin.
That's a nice response from you, Robin. A welcome suggestion and good support from all.
Thanks, Robin. We can improve things as a team. I appreciate your response.
Very good to know, Robin. Give a shout if you need help editing.
The trend that HubPages has decided to follow is a really disturbing one...like somebody said "Go minimalist" to the wrong person and that person RAN with it.
The page in the above link is much more informative, sure...
But at first glance it looks about as pretty as a Microsoft Technet page. And as a person who has to read Technet on a regular basis...this is not a good thing...............at all.
Some color, some pictures...anything.
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