Lately, I've been checking the feed. I've flagged a couple of articles related to spamming one's own business. After looking more closely, I've also noticed published articles (not even articles) that most would consider extremely sub-standard. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a grammar guru. After six years with HubPages, I'm still learning on a regular basis - especially the fact that I'm not perfect.
I feel that something needs to be done about the influx of garbage that's being published on HubPages. Granted, I know the niche sites was created to separate the wheat from the chaff - so to speak. Even still, Hubpages has always been one of the leading content sites with a decent reputation that is slowly being compromised and degraded by nonsense (it's the only way I can put it without singling out the obvious source) ...
Why has there never been a simple test or vetting process when signing up - one created to vet potential writers?
For instance, the photo content site Pixaby has a system set up where its community of photographers go through a vetting system of unmarked photographs. Those photographs that make it through to the first vetting round then go to editors for a final review and then they are accepted or rejected. This helps keep a balance of quality. If I recall we used to have a similar means called the UP system where the HP community vetted articles with an up or down arrow to rank for the best quality at that time. Why can't we bring something like this back to help weed out the sub-standard?
I'm not trying to pick on the newer writers, especially those with promising skills. We've all been there before. We appreciate you. I'm strictly speaking of those individuals who are incompetent and lack basic English writing skills or those flooding HP so they can promote their business or another writing content site. We already know that new articles go through a quality analysis on whether it is featured on HP or not ... BUT ... why not just nip it in the bud from the very start by process of elimination by the community? If the community had a check and balance system set up, we could rid of the garbage problem in no time before any article ever goes to featuring analysis thereby removing spammers and incompetent so that this mess doesn't cram our feed.
Set aside the quality niche sites ... Hp alone still has a reputation to uphold. Though articles within HP do not get promoted through the big search engines as much like the niches, they are still out there in search options and these articles and the writer's profile still reflect upon the entire community.
No doubt this has been brought up before. Just some thoughts.
I'm not sure that what shows up in the feed is actually seen by Google. I seem to remember that nothing is visible until it gets featured...which is AFTER the QAP process occurs. Check people's profiles to see if those same hubs are actually featured. If so, report them to the team. This would help immensely to cut down on this type of thing. Makes me wonder if our low views lately may be partially to blame for low quality work getting featured.
Isn't that what the Quality Assessment Process is for? Unfortunately, there are hundreds, possibly thousands, of old hubs that have escaped QAP because they've never been edited.
In any case, the overall quality of the site is a vast improvement over what it was a few years ago It certainly didn't have a great rep before Google thwacked it with Panda.
The sub-standard stuff in your feed will have been just published by hubbers you are following and will probably be QAPped within 48 hours.
Good to know. I do kind of miss the UP option ... it gave us more of an opportunity to be a part of the community rather than just participating in the forum ... just a little bit of say in things. Thanks for your insight
I don't think the voting up did much, there was the hub hopping feature that was actually used to mark content as spam. Even now you could mark the hub as spam, it's two clicks: Report > Report as spam.
Do it often. Who wants to police all the time? It's annoying. I wish there was a better way before they even get on our feed ... I know. Wishing isn't getting
I thought they were new hubs before the QAP too, but you say they are on Letterpile. I see some really bad hubs on Dengarden too. Not anywhere near the standards they need to be.
Just an example as Dr.Mark pointed out on small articles with a few paragraphs, no photos or extra content that make an article a full featured article. I've seen them not only on LetterPile but elsewhere. Obviously, Letterpile is a creative site but thinking deeper into this ... if there is no depth to the article other than one's creativity, lacking in-depth information that those on the web are searching for then wouldn't this particular niche site be a hindrance to the overall quality in lieu of Google requirements for HP and niche sites as a whole?
Yeah but it stands on its own, so no harm or benefit to the other sites from it.
If all the sites are being interlinked wouldn't the quality of each individual site affect the whole network?
I thought we saw a glimpse of that when the coding mistake was made and all of the hp articles were indexed by Google...I know Paul did not address your question, but you and Will seemed to think the niche sites did not run separately from hp, since most of the sites were affected by this mistake.
Forgot to add: As long as there is no strong interlinking* Right now we are only heavily linked to from Hubpages.com through our profiles. If the recommended articles are mostly from within the niche sites it should be okay I would think.
But all articles on all niche sites should be held accountable to high standards.
I think Google is intelligent enough to realize that trash on one niche site is related to other niche sites.
When I looked for my recent hub, for example, I typed in part of the title followed by the word hubpages. Google returned the article on hubpages but on the first page were also similar articles from pethelpful and a few other niche sites.
There were not similar articles from other sites, only those owned by HP.
There is a simple solution to this but HP probably does not want to do it because of a potential loss of page views/income. They could unfeature all articles published prior to 2012 that have not been edited.
Google would not mind. I think the better articles that have been published since then would have increased traffic and HP would not lose anything.
(I just looked at an article this morning that had last been edited in 2010. It was short, had several Amazon capsules at the bottom that should be snipped. What a waste. I wish I could have that 2 minutes of my life back.)
One of yours? This would definitely be a good idea.
No, I edit mine at least once a year, more like every few months if I can find any new info that will help the reader.
The one I read this morning was from someone that had several thousand hubs, none moved to niche sites but still about 20 or 30 featured. There was a habit here pre-Panda, or maybe a sort of philosophy, that allowed writers to put out multiple hubs per day of dubious quality.
I think all of them should be unfeatured, even if they still have a faint heartbeat on Google.
This is what I was trying to get at ... one or two paragraph articles that are featured. Especially on LetterPile
I know what you mean about LetterPile. I cannot believe some of the stuff that I see on that site and I have no idea why it ended up there. I am not sure that reporting it does any good.
Oh I see... you mean articles already on the niche sites? I had a crappy hub moved over because it was getting quite a bit of traffic (about 100 a day). I couldn't understand why google liked it and was surprised it got moved. I've since majorly upgraded the article.
What Google sends traffic to isn't the best way to measure the quality of an article and I agree they shouldn't be moved from Hubpages main domain unless they get a good editing to bring the quality up.
I had a few articles moved to different niche sites that were "edited" and did not get any traffic at all. I'm talking less than 400 views in 7 years.
I went to figure out why they were moved and could not figure it out. One was so bad I was embarrassed I had even wrote it! And that was after the staff had supposedly edited it. Grammar mistakes/spelling errors/run on sentences you name it, you would have found it in that article. I had to drop everything I was working on so I could update it and make it into something worthy of being on the niche site.
How they ever where selected I do not know, because I'm having a hard time trying to get some articles moved that actually get some traffic and are of better quality. They keep getting rejected with the basic e-mail that tells me nothing about how I should fix them and e-mails to the staff go unanswered.
It's not just my articles either. Like mentioned above Letterpile has some low quality stuff as well. I was looking through Owlcation (theology) a few months ago and a new author wrote a bunch of articles at once (All one block of text, one photo, and short) most are on Owlcation, and a few on Letterpile (rest are on hp). His Owlcation articles contain a ton of references though, so I guess references get you on Owlcation even if your content is sub-par. Which isn't far from the truth. I tried to get an article on Owlcation and was told it's not academic enough, but if I add references it can be moved from letterpile. What a joke.
I had 4 or 5 of my Owlcation articles updated today. Some major edits on photos, quotes and verbiage removed or grammatical errors that I've overlooked. Somebody is definitely working. The only niche site that I've hit a brick wall with is WanderWisdom ... this niche site seems to be a tough one. I've submitted an article just this week - it was rejected yet now the article is going viral lol ... no idea any more
"I had a few articles moved to different niche sites that were "edited" and did not get any traffic at all. I'm talking less than 400 views in 7 years." ... this has happened to me as well.
I flag stuff all the time. I usually go to bed kind of early, but I can never sleep all night. I wake up at around 2 or 3 a.m., and I look at the web for an hour or two before going back to bed, so as to get a proper amount of sleep.
It's late in the night when most of the spam gets published. One picture, a few paragraphs of junk with some hyperlinks in the text. I flag it, and in the morning it's 404 page not found.
As TT said, it's my understanding that hubs in the feed are newly submitted stuff that haven't yet been through QAP. Which means they're unfeatured (so it won't hurt the site), and if they'rewritten badly, they will never get featured status. They're essentially quarantined.
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