Associated Content has grown into a popular site for writers, both professional and amateur. For amateur writers like myself, Associated Content is a great way to hone what skills we have and get valuable feedback. Getting that feedback from typical visitors to the Associated Content site is difficult at times.
While it may not be obvious, my writing skills have improved greatly in the past two months. With that improvement the rate of pay for my articles has grown to a respectable average. Not that I am going to pay the bills anytime soon, it is just nice to see the extra appreciation for my work. That improve is mainly due to constructive feedback that was difficult to obtain. Hopefully, the results of this experiment will make it easier for other new content producers to get that needed feedback.
The experiment involves a short list of questions that I would like comments from Associate Content producers and average viewers. With the larger number of content producer’s at Associated Content it is hard to judge the reaction of typical viewers to the site. The typical viewer would be less likely to leave comments. Please leave your comments even it is a simple “No Comment.”
On the AC home page featured articles, newest, most emailed, top rated articles and breaking news prominently displayed. Most attention is focused on featured/spotlight articles and top rated articles. Do you limit your AC visit to the easily visible content or do you browse by category?
Each article published has a rating system. From one star for poor up to five stars for excellent. Each article starts life with a three stars or average rating. High rated content improves the articles chances of being viewed more often. As a reader you can vote once for each article. How often do you rate an article after reading?
Featured by Category.
Each category has featured content in the spotlight on its page. Some of the categories are at AC are very broad. The Sports category for example is very broad with every sport under the sun from football to cricket. This would make it difficult for non-content producers to locate the specific content they may like. Do you feel that more subcategories would improve your AC experience?
Associate Content has a clout meter associated with each content producer. The clout meter is an indication of how may views a CP has and how many articles the CP has produced. I should mention that the clout meter has been broken for several months. AC content producers are disappointed that they are not getting feedback from their clout status. As a viewer, are you more inclined to read articles by content producers with higher clout?
View meters or hit counters record the total number of times an article has been viewed. It is not an indication as to whether the article was read, only if it was clicked on. Content producers feel this is a necessary tool for them to evaluate their performance. As their clout and their pay rate are tied to views, this is not unreasonable. Associated Content has stated that they are in the process of installing view meters to resolve this issue. The view meter can be visible only to the CP or to both reader and CP. As a reader, do you feel that a view meter would influence your choice in the articles you prefer to view?
Each article has a comment section at the bottom for a viewer to express his/her opinion. Some high rated articles have many comments while others have only a few. The majority of the comments appear to be from content producers. With this article as an exception, how often do leave comments?
If you were to answer every question this would be a survey. For it to be an experiment, answer only the question you feel is the most compelling. If you are not a content producer, we can tell from the comment block. If you are a part time CP and feel you are more of a viewer that a CP, state so at the beginning of your comments.