Do you think Hubpages should take a harder stance to poorly written hubs?
I hop hubs when I can, and find so many that are of poor quality. They have little to no content, or just one long text block. Don't get me started about the spelling or grammar.
Should HP take more of a harder stance against these hubs, and just pull them or not even post them without going through some sort of spelling or grammar check? I am sure it would be easy to tell if just one module is used just for works, and to tell if it's just one 1,000 word paragraph.
For the most part I think the poorly written hubs are coming from newbies or people just messy around hoping to turn a dollar online. Surely, they are still learning how this site works and a friendly suggestion could stir them in the right direction. Me, I'm here for the practice, the exposure and the friendly feedback as I know my grammar can stand some improvement and I really want to be a well read writer someday. I'm sure HubPages will set anyone straight when they feel reason is there. I stopped hopping hubs when they started the rating game. Judgement should come from experts.
Perhaps so. I know some who write on here that don't have English as their first language, and while I want them to have a chance, it can drag the site down as a whole.
Just curious by saying dragging down which market place are you referring too. The UK, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, India, South Africa, or elsewhere. I am not aware of the market statistics of HP. Maybe the growth is elsewhere.
Oh believe me, you have everything here. To begin with, I'm an Estonian writing to you from Paris. Oui-oui.
I am a newbie, and don't think my Hubs are poorly written. That does not make very much sense, as everyone has to start at some time. This is just a matter of poor writing.
There are lots of forums on this subject. My suggestion would be to treat hp like a real job and have each applicant submit a writing sample, done in real time, using the hub tool, text capsule only, just to get an idea of basic writing skill. Seems simple enough to me. A lot of people would definitely be turned away or would be deterred from applying at all.
Good idea. While Textbroker is a pay per project site, they have each writer submit a sample and each new article/project is also "graded" enabling Textbroker to make sure standards are met. I see no reason this can't work here in some form.
Without knowing the relationship between the quality of writing (not counting SEO) and the marketability and revenue-generating potential of HP, I think such a step would be a stab in the dark. Many money-makers here don't have the best grammar.
I totally agree with this. That seems like a fair and swift way to weed out writers who have not attained the standard needed to have a featured Hub.
Yes I do. I think there should be more quality assessment going on but realise that this is a challenge to implement fairly, without squeezing a whole lot of would be writers out the door!!
That's the dilemma HP faces. On the one hand HP needs to be democratic and offer chances to writers from all nations. On the other many of these writers lack the natural qualities of native English writers. What to do?
Correct spelling and grammar ought to be basic necessities for a hub to pass muster and if hubs are not up to scratch they should be held until the standards are achieved. I'm sure it could be done without too much pain!!
It's sometimes a little disheartening to see popular hubs that are full of promise and comments fail at spelling for example- British/American spellings excepted!! - because some readers of this hub outside of HP might then associate HP with poor quality?
Not being an expert on website ratings and traffic potential I don't know the full effects lower quality hubs may have on HP as a whole. I can only hope that the higher quality hubs will shine through irrespective of those 'dubious' ones.
Thank you! You've posed an interesting question!
Correct spelling and grammar is daunting for anyone with an 8th grade level of reading and writing. The HuffingtonPost.com says the average high school student reads at 5.3 level. More here http://www.nald.ca/library/research/readab/readab.pdf
chef-de-jour, why associate poorly-written content with people who aren't native English speakers? English is my 3rd language. I'm not perfect as a writer but pretty good compared to some native speakers as far as both grammar and spelling.
I absolutely do think HP should do this, but unfortunately, I do not think they have enough staffers to take care of the problem.
The easier route would be for HP to set up a computer program that screens hubs for the basics such as good grammar and spelling, length, correct language usage, etc.
This might cost the company a few dollars, but in the long run would upgrade the site and bring more money in.
TimeTraveler2, I think you're making an assumption that a grammar checker would bring in more money. Do you have any link to support that? Seems logical, but the web is a wily creature that doesn't always do what we expect or want it to.
In my opinion the featured system is exactly what it's all about. Imagine all the people here who don't have English as their first language but still do their best It seems fair enough that their hubs don't get featured, but pulling them...
I have whittled down the time I spend using the hopper and prefer to read the hubs of my followers, those of their followers, and other hubbers that I come across through questions, answers, and forums that interest me with their opinions and experiences.
I have never claimed to be a great writer or perfect in any way however, when a hub is less than one or two hundred words I find it very difficult to take the "information" or opinion seriously. A large number of the hubs that I come across in the hopper are very promotional or something that I just would not expect to see on HP. I used to look forward to using the hopper, now it is for this reason that I have become a bit wary.
There's no such thing as a poorly written hub. All writing is arbitrary and subjective. HubComputers can measure number of outbound links, misspelled words, length of paragraphs, and other measurable measurements, but no one can identify good or bad writing.
What's wrong with a 1000 word paragraph? Nothing at all. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's poorly written. If Bob Dylan were alive and published Rainy Day Women #12 and 35 in his first hub, someone wouldn't like it.
If Lewis Carroll gave us Jabberwocky in a hub, someone would ban it because it was (subjectively) poorly written.
Someone voted this down? We need a content site moderated by English teachers: perhaps that will make these people happy.
I don't believe this question is about creative writing but about factual technical writing like how-tos. There are objective standards for good and bad writing in this genre.
In an ongoing effort to help build and improve the HP community we are encouraged to hop hubs. The process should be enjoyable and not a chore. Unfortunately, hub hopping becomes tedious and time consuming.
As you mentioned, there are many hubs where errors occur, even in the title. Then we are bombarded with poor structure, a lack of care in sentence structure, inputting a hub in all caps, and finally, the story that was obviously just slapped together and posted without proof reading it first. Many times I'm left scratching my head in wonderment over how someone could be so careless in writing and then posting a hub. I feel as though my time has been wasted, clicking and then going back to square one to try and find another hub to hop. Quite frankly, it is a frustrating procedure.
Personally, I believe there are too many variables involved for HP to monitor/police articles submitted. For instance, the UK and the USA spell many common words differently.
If authors in our community of HP don't take their writing seriously, then I think it is up to other hubbers to either ignore their content or to offer some constructive criticism. When hub scores remain low, it should trigger an awareness that something is awry.
This is our community and one we should be proud to be a member of. Therefore, I think it is our responsibility to take the harsher stance against poorly written hubs and not Hubpages personnel.
davidlivermore: I think that HP provides a platform for sharing knowledge. Now take my case I do not have any material consideration except interacting with people who, I consider, are more intelligent than me. There may lacs of intellectuals across the Globe who might be having good knowledge about the subject matter but poor in language as English may not be their mother tongue. It will not be fair to take a harder stance, why harder stance - even discussing in such harder tones, may drive away such intellectuals. As regards 1000 word paragraph - always remember to be precise is always better. Here I could not be precise as it is not a voting module to say "Yes" or "No" but I have to express myself freely and fearlessly.
Seems to me that everyone here is assuming that a poorly written hub receives poor traffic. I think a quick perusal on just about any topic in the search engines will reveal that the correlation between grammar and what's most popular is far from perfect.
There are plenty of places online one can go if they want to be amongst those who write to perfection. HP should be allocating resources in a manner that brings in solid views and ad revenues, period, end of story.
If raising the quality of writing here does that, and does it to a degree that can be justified by the amount of energy and dollars it took to get there, great. If there are other ways to increase traffic that have more bang for the buck (e.g., training Hubbers how to improve their SEO), that's where they should put their effort.
I do believe HubPages should have a qualifier for its authors. When I personally come across a site with horrible writing (i.e., spelling, grammar, punctuation, and especially content), I most likely will not go back to that site due to its credibility. In addition, I believe there are too many authors who write on subjects that know nothing about the topic. I believe an author should not delve into areas he or she is not an expert in. With that being said, I believe all authors of HubPages should go through the Apprenticeship program. One can learn so much on the professionalism of writing hubs. It's an outstanding six month program, and even those who have been writing for HubPages for months or years could learn some wonderful things to boost their pages.
I agree about the apprentice program and I have commented in other venues about having a graduated apprentice program. This way, newbie writers can and should learn how to properly write online. This would also take the stress off of Hub Hopping.
When I joined HubPages back in August 2012, it seemed to be a site that harbored creative writing, as well as informational articles. As Google has changed its direction, so too has HP. I think this may be a turning point for HP to decide whether it truly can operate as both a creative writing site or article-driven site. If HP decides upon article-driven, then it can at its discretion be more selective on what it considers effective articles or not.
I believe that is where the "education" should occur and not with non-featured or flagged stuff. The problem as some have suggested is: Who is qualified to make a judgement as to what is good writing? Every writer has his/her own opinion. I, too, have hopped a number of articles in my time but many of those articles I wouldn't have passed. Some lesser articles even made Hub of the Day.
Realistically speaking, HubPages has a very difficult task ahead of them by trying to please everyone. They certain try their best to tow the center line on each and every issue and for that I am and will always be very grateful for the time I spend on HP.
I just think that perhaps within this turbid period, perhaps changes will be made and lines determined on the identity of the type of writer HP wants on their site. Some might call this censure, for lack of a better word--but in a way, Google-wise this is becoming the scene for good business.
So what to do with writers not formally attuned to proper grammar or proper writing styles? Sorry, paragraphs are a must! They will need to find a way to improve their writing ability, for this is a must for all online writing.
Now, is this HP's responsibility to educate them or will they be directed to an off-site (maybe of HP origin) that will work to help them--or will their writing be completely disregarded? Truly, HP's regular Hub writers should be able to focus on writing articles and not have to edit another's writing--unless of course, HP has determined a certain group of writers (who are fully trained) to do so. I believe in the current state of this site, Hub Hopping adds more angst to the mix and keeps drawing fire where it really doesn't need to be.
I think they already have started cracking down on these hubs.
Do what I do, y'all... when you see a sub-par, obviously copied, or random/nonsense Hub, flag it for the Moderation team and if you're feeling particularly saucy, leave a snide comment beneath it. We need to let these scammers and spammers know that we're onto'em and they're not welcome!!
This past weekend I came across a dude who was copying Yahoo Entertainment News articles word-for-word and publishing them as Hubs... he'd posted about a half dozen of them. I flagged each one and then left a comment that said "Wow, I hope you didn't hurt your back lifting this piece from Yahoo" or "It must've been a lot of work copying and pasting this from Yahoo" along with a link to the original article he stole. They were deleted within the hour.
I hope this doesn't make me seem like a jerk but I'm tired of being nice and pretending I don't notice the sheer amount of crapola that's getting past the front gates 'round here.
LOL! Sounds like a very apropos comment to that thief.
I don't know how effective such tactics would be over time but at that exact moment it seemed like the right thing to do. More fun, too.
People with poor content wont get read anyway so no I don't think there has to be taken a harder stance against it
I am probably shooting myself in the foot here, but I think Hubpages should be a little stricter, I have come across a few hubs that I could not understand. The grammar was so bad, I could not make heads or tails of it. That being said, my grammar is not perfect and if Hubpages came down too hard, i might end up being a victim of a policy change I supported.
I don't really know how it would be possible to stop the introduction of poorly written Hubs, unless you had some clearly defined criteria that they would have to meet before publishing, like the ones you mention above. I also like the idea if having to submit a text sample in real time. Think that might be valuable, and give people motivation to improve.
If you find a poorly written hub don't read it, or read it and leave a word of encouragement. Isn't Hubpages supposed to be a community to help one another with their writing? I am appalled at the comments from hubbers here that are willing and ready to report hubs that are poorly written. If you believe that it is a plagiarized hub and you can prove it then yes, by all means yes report it.
I do not believe that any of us would "report" someone who had poor grammar, but I'm sure most of us would love to see the people who plagiarize, out of here. No matter how well I believe I have written an article, I will always find errors.
There are hubs from when I began here that I wrote that, looking back, I'm not even sure why HubPages let them stay. The content makes me cringe and they never get views anymore anyway. It's not as though the grammar and spelling and content is bad, there's just a huge missing component in all of them that makes them look lacking.
no that would make it off limits to many that have something to say. I find most of the useless hubs are written by those , mostly liberals, that are in their own eyes the cultural elite.
and beside that they are in this for the money so why should they care
Absolutely, there is lots of real crap out there. Nothing against people who were not born english speakers, but if you are going to write in a language, you really should know it.
Yes, they should. I found this site when I was searching for home repair advice. While the article I landed on was great and offered me all the info I needed, the suggested related articles at the bottom of the page were horrible. It wasn't just the writing, but the fact that they authors went on and on and on with no section headings to break up the different topics they were rambling on about.
This site has a lot of neat stuff, but some of the amateur writers here really need to learn how to structure their articles. No one is going to read a wall of text.
No one is going to read a wall of text.
then no one will read and the person will quit writing. problem solved or people like you could give a few helpful hint and the writer becomes a good writer...problem solved
Are you kidding??? It is not the reader's job to teach the writer how to write. Either write well and be read, or write poorly and be ignored.
I do believe that Hubpages should take a harder stance on poorly written hubs. Even my hubs are poorly written, and I would not mind one bit, if someone sent me a message telling me to fix them! I keep going back and finding more mistakes, and wondering how I missed them in the first place. I am also, very frustrated, with some hubs getting high ratings, and they have poor grammar!
It is important that my association is with quality work. If I would have started publishing my writing 20 years ago, I can assure you - my work would have been different. Experience and a journalism degree have helped. Sometimes, it feels to me that all work on Hubpages (high or low quality) is treated equally as long as the recommendations in the corner are met. I take great pride in constructing my hubs and It is my hope they speak on their own. It would be nice to receive more recognition, not just for construction, but for high quality writing.
What if that one hub helped one person? Who are we to say? People should be able to read what they want.
There are pros and cons to taking a harder stance to poorly written hubs. If Hubpages is too strict, it would discourage new members from joining (not to mention existing members dropping out) and ending up being monopolized by a small number of contributors. On the other hand, being too lax would create a situation that you have raised. Can we have the best of both worlds? I believe so...
Firstly, Hubpages has in place a feature called "Featured Articles". Second, there is this "laissez-faire" mechanism at work where poor quality articles will not attract high traffic, just like all the other pages outside of Hubpages.
So to give a clear answer, I would say that Hubpages should not take too hard a stance on poorly written hubs, unless they look like they were written without much serious effort... something akin to graffiti. For those who put in a reasonable amount of effort and yet the quality of the hub is poor, I feel that these members should be given a chance to continue writing. Practice makes perfect. No one who is serious about Hubpages would want to publish a poorly-written hub intentionally. To this, it is heartening to note that Hubpages have come out with an Apprentice Program to improve the quality of writing of its members. Kudos!!!
Was about to pen off when this thought flash into my mind... would Hubpages be able to automatically delete all low (or very low) traffic hubs published after, say, 6 months or a year? If so, that would definitely help to raise the overall quality of the hubs, without being seemingly too harsh to the authors.
Low traffic hubs and poorly written hubs are two different things. I think having hubs be automatically deleted for low traffic sounds pretty harsh. I think the unfeaturing they already do is adequate.
Hard to imagine a poorly written hub with a high 6-month traffic!!! By definition, if a hub has high traffic, it is not a poorly written hub. Maybe Sherry Hewins can show us some examples of poorly written hubs with a high 6-month traffic.
I think that this is what the hopper system is for. The hubpages community gets an opportunity to weed out the hubs by using the flagging button. We can also vote a hub up or down based on many factors like quality and the amount of content. It may seem like a pain but I really like this system. A poor hub can generate a lot of traffic so the whole bad hubs mess it up for the rest of us thing is not completely accurate. Lastly when it comes to spelling and grammar I would like to think that we all do our best. I know that if there is an error in my spelling or grammar (That has happened to me plenty of times before) that I would a appreciate a comment letting me know about my errors so I could quickly change it and then delete the comment. I know that I welcome any feedback on how to improve my hubs and I think there are many others that feel the same.
I think not at all. Being a newbie one there should an adjustment for you to write well.
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