June 10, 2016: The Ratings Phenomenon

“…not many years ago, it was access to information and movement that seemed our greatest luxury; nowadays it’s often freedom from information, the chance to sit still, that feels like the ultimate prize.” Pico Iyer

I can’t seem to simply get good products or service and then take a deep breath and relax about things kept up with. Apparently, it’s necessary to be inundated with rating requests for everything. This “let’s-rate-things” is the new empowerment—no matter how lame or uninformed we are, we at least have a ratings’ voice.

Of course, that’s me rating the raters, though I happen to have a bit of training at being an effective rater and avoiding “rater error”—which does not mean I do not make mistakes. Nonetheless, a mistake is not always the same as ineffectiveness, whether it’s in personal matters, in business, or in ratings. But the newly empowered “Gotcha” crowd, lacking true expertise, scours the landscape for a problem and then triumphantly becomes dismissive about the entire area. And of course that triumphant gotcha is often a cover for the “raters” own lack of discipline and nuance.

It is worth noting that most folks seem to use their rating’s voice judiciously—they are not trying to wreck others. But while checking out business ratings can be helpful, it has to be taken with a grain of salt since a cottage industry of ne’er-do-wells have found a way to infect what could be a good idea.

2 Responses so far.

  1. adamgc91 says:

    This even applies to social media. Everything is a rating whether it’s yourself waiting on a rating of your newest post to boost your own confidence, or giving your opinion on something you have little to no experience on. It seems Everyone wants to receive or give a rating on something.

    • Travis Gibbs says:

      Interesting. Your comments seem to be you reading the inside of your head, rather than what I wrote. By-the-way, everything is NOT a rating and NOT everyone is waiting on a rating. But that’s just the tip of iceberg about your “rating.”

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