Writer guidelines for HP editors

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  1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
    TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months ago

    A number of writers here have been seeing numerous mistakes on edits, so I thought it would be a good idea for us to post them individually to remind editors that although we appreciate their efforts, they should make sure they are correct before initiating changes on articles.

    I'll start. 

    Titles

    Titles should be searchable and should reflect the content of their articles.  They should also be grammatically correct.

    If I write an article about making an RV more livable, the editor should not add "by maximizing space",if that is not the total thrust of the article.  Furthermore, by adding those words, they lower the searchability rating of the title.

    1. samanthacubbison profile imageSTAFF
      samanthacubbisonposted 10 months agoin reply to this

      There seems to be a lot of confusion among Hubbers regarding titles. A longer title is not necessarily a bad thing, within reason. So in this instance, adding keywords that can be considered "relevant" to the article does not lower searchability, but actually makes it better.

      If you're ever concerned that a title would be considered too long, this handy tool can help: https://moz.com/learn/seo/title-tag

      1. Bedbugabscond profile image97
        Bedbugabscondposted 10 months agoin reply to this

        When this type of change was made to my articles, I saw more traffic, and did not feel the article lost any meaning. One article in particular is quite strong in it's snipit. I would like to see editors keep working on my titles and subtitles until they all get to the top. smile

        1. samanthacubbison profile imageSTAFF
          samanthacubbisonposted 10 months agoin reply to this

          Awesome! I'm so glad you saw more traffic come your way! Our editing team has the same goal in mind for all of our writers, believe me.

          1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
            TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

            Please understand that I have no doubts that our goals are all the same because it is to the benefit of the entire community for views and rankings to rise.  However, as I've noted continually, I'm seeing real mistakes in grammar and structure in some places.  For example, black water tank vs. blackwater tank.  The first is a tank that is black and holds water.  The second is a tank that holds sewage.  The second one is a term used by RV owners, but I've had problems with this terminology consistently over time because editors don't understand this point.  This may seem petty, but if I am an experienced RVer and I misuse this term, Iose credibility.  It's very upsetting.

            1. samanthacubbison profile imageSTAFF
              samanthacubbisonposted 10 months agoin reply to this

              If you take a look at the results of "black water tank" with a basic Google search, it looks it is actually used quite often in articles, videos and products relating to RVing. This could be why your editor decided to change it, regardless of the terminology. I'm sorry you're experiencing such grief over these edits, though!

              1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
                TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

                That may be, but people make mistakes with this sort of thing all the time.  Common sense tells you that "black water tank" describes a water tank that is black!!  However, I see your point, even though I will continue to use the proper terminology.  I just sent an email to Paul about an edit that just came through where the editor literally captioned photos with the captions that belonged on the text capsules and literally started to copy the text in another section but only put in the first few words and completely eliminated the rest of the text!  It took me awhile to even figure out what was happening.  I sent a link to Paul...perhaps you should take a look at it.  Samantha, anybody here who knows me will tell you that I work very hard to do the best I can.  I am extremely careful about every aspect of a hub from titles to images to text, etc.  Your editors for the most part are doing OK, but some of the bloopers they're making are very hard to swallow and are creating unbelievable amounts of work for me.  I don't mind doing the work if it is necessary, but much of what is being corrected is not necessary..as in the blackwater tank issue.  If there are two ways to say something, why would this need correction?  Of course I'm upset, you would be, too.  I do the work because the only other option is to let it stand, ruin my reputation as a writer and destroy any chance I have of earning anything here.  I am only asking that editors contact me if they have confusion about terminology and to proofread their own edits before posting them online.  Tonight's blooper was a doozy and should never have been posted.

          2. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
            TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

            I can see where in some cases this would work, but the title needs to match the content or it won't!

            1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
              TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

              Had another blooper tonight, and have seen this one before, so be on the lookout for it.  The editor removed two product links from a hub but did not remove the corresponding text.  Thus, when the text refers the reader to the product, it's not there!  Makes me look like an idiot!

              1. Sherry Hewins profile image95
                Sherry Hewinsposted 10 months agoin reply to this

                When they snip an Amazon product they never edit the text to compensate.

                1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
                  TIMETRAVELER2posted 9 months agoin reply to this

                  I know that, but why aren't they fixing it?  Don't they realize that making this type of correction affects other things?  Some writers just accept the edits and never check to see if what was done was totally correct.  It should be standard procedure for editors to readjust the text when removing the ads.

        2. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
          TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

          In this case it was not the length extension, it was the fact that the extra wordage did not reflect the content of the article as I had intended.  Also, the title tool I use (which Robin shared with me awhile back) rated the title with the extra words lower than the original.  I spend a ton of time on titles, so having someone throw extra words into them without checking to make sure they match existing content exactly is not good.

        3. Urbane Chaos profile image96
          Urbane Chaosposted 10 months agoin reply to this

          There have been a few things similar that has happened to me.  One that I remember..

          I have several articles that talk about Indian Territory; correctly referenced, it's "the Indian Territory".  A couple of articles were edited to remove the capitalization and the texted was changed to "Native American territory".  In another, it was changed to something like "the territory that belonged to the Native American's". 

          The first time I saw that I literally laughed.  I think I may have even spewed coffee out.  I can't confirm that though, but it was funny.

          Between 1834 to 1907, Oklahoma was divided into Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory, both names assigned by Congress.  It's really no fault of the editors though, they simply didn't know.  That type of edit still crops up from time to time, so I shoot the editor a note letting them know that I wasn't trying to avoid being politically correct, rather, I was calling the area by its legal name.  After that, no problem. 

          With some things, a quick note will do wonders!

    2. theraggededge profile image97
      theraggededgeposted 10 months ago

      I'll add one.

      When dealing with an article which is, essentially, a list of variations, please leave it in alphabetical order. Changing 60 sections (6,200 words) to reflect search engine popularity is no help to anyone (especially me, the writer) who is looking for a particular section.

      It took me hours to put it back to how it was supposed to be.

      1. samanthacubbison profile imageSTAFF
        samanthacubbisonposted 10 months agoin reply to this

        In regards to that article, it seems that your editor rearranged the list only to better align with SEO and keyword-search terms that were related to the topic. This is of course based on the mainstay structure of the inverted pyramid (The “base” of the pyramid is composed of the most important facts. Non-essential information appears in the following paragraphs, and background/extra material is at the bottom.) 

        You can reference this page for more information: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/subject_spec … ramid.html

        1. theraggededge profile image97
          theraggededgeposted 10 months agoin reply to this

          I understand the reasons, Samantha, but imagine if you were looking for some information and were faced with a mishmash of 60 sections which appeared to have no logical order. Alphabetical is usually standard and makes it easy to scan down to find what you want.

          The worst thing is that there was no previous version to revert to.

          As requested, I left it for a few weeks, but there was no noticeable improvement in traffic. In fact, after I put it back into alpha, traffic increased for a while.

          I have no objection to the rest of the edits, but had the editor asked me first before making that fundamental change, I could have explained my feelings about it.

          We should, of course, make our work SE friendly, but not twist ourselves into contortions over an algorithm, which could change again at any time.

    3. Kenna McHugh profile image90
      Kenna McHughposted 10 months ago

      How can anyone edit a specialized subject when they don't understand that subject? The nomenclature or terminology relating to some of these topics is staggering. Then, trying to get around SEO by changing the nomenclature is wild, an example from one of the Hubbers,  changing "poisonous" to "venomous" for a spider article.

    4. Kenna McHugh profile image90
      Kenna McHughposted 10 months ago

      Thank you for the links, Sam!

    5. Kenna McHugh profile image90
      Kenna McHughposted 10 months ago

      TT2, That's a good one and an important one.

      1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
        TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

        It's interesting to me that although I started a post where people could provide info that would help editors make improvements, very few here have posted.  Either they have had no problems, are not checking their edits before allowing them to go through or worry that by complaining they'll create problems for themselves.  I can't be the only person seeing these things or the only one having these problems, but I do know that without calling issues such as these to the attention of editors and their supervisors, problems will persist.

    6. lobobrandon profile image89
      lobobrandonposted 10 months ago

      I've not had a single issue with the editors so far, but I would say that's due to the low number of hubs I've had. Black water tank and blackwater tank are completely different things. Just because most people make that mistake and that is the popular search term, does not mean the author would want her work to follow the same mistake. That's insane.

      It's not even an RV based terminology. Sewage is popularly known as blackwater and waste water from a kitchen or bathroom sink is greywater (absence of fecal matter).

      Also, I would think it's high school science to know that poisonous is something that kills or harms from the inside and venomous is when a plant or animal bites, injects (through a thorn) or stings to insert a substance that harms another creature without it being consumed. I'm not sure if the editor corrected this blunder or made it. If it was made, that takes away the credibility from that article.

      EDIT: HubPro Premium has been awesome for me. Great work, great communication and better traffic.

      1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image96
        TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 months agoin reply to this

        Obviously not all of the edits are errors, but there definitely is a lack of consistency even within the same edit and there are continuing errors like the ones you just noted based on popular but incorrect thinking.  I will say that the editors have backed way off since I started noting their mistakes.  The hubs showing up now basically have no real meaningful corrections.  I'll just keep pumping away at them until done, but I hope this doesn't happen again because I'm not sure the reward is worth the effort.  They're even correcting hubs that are scored as 100's!

    7. Kenna McHugh profile image90
      Kenna McHughposted 10 months ago

      We fix it, then.

    8. Ira Mency profile image88
      Ira Mencyposted 7 months ago

      how to talk to an editor ? im starting to hate this and i even left a good review on consumer affairs so many people are frustrated. like the old squidoo accounts - editors are impacting my work on my old account by removing images that are my own flagging my own images from sites i have then my article is no linger featured and the article was a good one w tons of comments how do we speak to editors ?

     
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