Fortnightly Feedback #1: Friendly Fire

by on July 23, 2010


This ‘ere fortnightly post is us actively checking in on what you think of MMO Melting Pot; if there’s anything you’d like to see more of, less of, plain changed, or generally what you like/dislike. We don’t promise to act on your opinions right away but we do want to hear em and might well take them on board so long as they’re constructive!

Hi folks! So MMO Melting Pot’s been going for just over a week. From my end it looks like things are going quite well – by golly, I’m finding the content interesting, so I hope you are too – and thanks for the email feedback and trackbacks.

But I’m interested in hearing how it generally looks from your end. Here are a few starter questions to get you thinking – feel free to answer as many as you like, or feedback on a completely different topic if such a one springs to mind!

  • How is the amount of daily content working for you (e.g. 2-3 posts most days)?
  • How is the amount of text vs. graphics for you?
  • How is the variety of content? Obviously not everyone’s going to find everything interesting, but Are We Doin’ It About Rite ™ for your liking atm? What’re the most and least interesting pieces so far?

Cheers folks! Talk to you in the comments.

If you enjoyed this article, check out our other posts from these categories: All Articles

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Jaedia July 23, 2010 at 5:58 pm

Ooh I do have one. the snippet quotes you use in posts break up text in my reader. I use a plugin called Align RSS Images, at http://w-shadow.com/blog/2008/12/31/aligning-im… in order to keep my feed looking decentish if that's any help to you guys?

Doing good so far. Was especially nice to come over here and feel inspired to write a post about something afterwards. :)

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Rebecca Judd July 23, 2010 at 9:46 pm

Thanks for the heads up! I'd been wondering how the text align looked in different formats. We'll look at the plugin for possibly including in next week's (Monday) maintenance list :)

And aye – was nice for us too to see that we'd helped inspire a post. 'Tis one of our main aims, so good to see it happening.

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Larísa July 23, 2010 at 11:25 pm

1. I love the idea of this! About time someone did it!

2. Some of the posts and links have been to VERY old stuff and it feels a little weird, just as I think it's weird that wow.com has started to link to posts that are several months old in their what's-up-in-the-blogosphere column. I would appreciate if it was more of a temperature meter, covering what's been up… let's say the last two weeks or so.

3. The idea to have a mandatory word to include in the post feels construced and out-of-place. I guess you can keep it if the writers get a kick out of it, but for a reader it's pretty pointless.

4. No link love for me? :(

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Rebecca Judd July 26, 2010 at 3:43 pm

1. Thanks! Much appreciated. Now to make it work ;)

2. Yup, some of them are a bit old. This will balance out soon and reflect 99% new/fresh stuff – at the moment it's because I'm getting up to date with my blogroll which has tripled in length since we launched. Also, for some of it, it's just been so interesting to me that I've wanted to share it for anyone who's not seen it yet (like the TED talk). But yes. Balance, more fresh, coming right up. So long as folks keep posting so I can keep linking :)

3. Right. Thanks for that. I've had people say they really don't like it and people say they really do. So I need to get some more feedback on this before I decide whether it adds anything for you guys. For us, it served a purpose and is a quirk, but is also a bit of extra time used each day.

4. Yet! It'll be when you least expect it… but if you will go on holiday… :) Have fun!

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Ecclesiastical Discipline July 27, 2010 at 9:03 pm

- I think this blog is a great idea. I know there are a lot of blogs that I don't follow because they are too class specific but write the occasional awesome post, and it's a great way to find new bloggers to follow.
- One thing I've noticed is that a lot of the posts feel a bit too verbose. If you find a topic inspiring and have thoughts to build on the original ideas, it's great to see a long post. But a four paragraph “summary” of why a particular four paragraph post is nifty seems like a bit too much.
- I really love “round up” style linkage, and would be happy to see more of it. Four or five different people's opinions on a current topic with a brief description of what is interesting about each just seems to work for me. A lot of topics in the blogophere “make the rounds” so to say (this week felt like “healing without addons week” for instance), and get some great people all giving their own opinions responding back and forth.
- You might consider your editorial posts as a sort of call out to other bloggers to post on the topic and comment with a link back to their post (similar to how Blog Azeroth does). Or maybe there's a less clunky way to do that? Maybe it's posting a Call to Arms topic every week, and then a follow up post linking to responses. Or ask a follow up question or topic after every post to try to take the topic further? I'm not sure I've thought the idea through well, but more of that kind of thing going around really interests me. You said one of your goals was to inspire bloggers to post on new topics, and I'm just wondering if there's a more active way to do that.
- I'm really excited to see how you implement a Blogroll – there's not a great resourse around (that I've been able to find) for linkage to quality blogs for different classes, etc. I know when I start leveling a new class or spec, I'd really love to find a place to go pick up the relevant blogs quickly.

I look forward to seeing what happens here!

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Rebecca Judd July 29, 2010 at 1:33 pm

Thanks for the positive feedback!

- On the verbosity of the posts. Yes, you've got a good point. As the site's still new we're taking the time to think about and play with different types of post and mix them up a bit to see what works for readers. For example, what do you think of the shorter posts over the past couple of days?

- Leading on from “playing with different post types” – I'm intending to do more “round up” style linkage; not every day, but it'll be going into the mix more often now that I've got on top of my blogroll. Feel free to let me know over the coming weeks how you like the balance with these posts, and tip me off to any mass-topics you think I'm missing. (Although the Codi/addon debate last week is a good example of something I deliberately didn't touch, as I thought the whole thing was enough of a surprise and upset for Codi without someone doing a big “and if you missed this, here's everything that happened when some people unexpectedly got upset with Codi's post”).

- Your thoughts on our editorials are a good idea. The editorial features are primarily intended as a marked out place for us to bring up *coughrantaboutcough* topics which aren't being talked about elsewhere or we want to cover in our own words, but it'd be nice if others picked up and ran with their own thoughts on whatever we bring up. Maybe we'll add a bugle to the editorial features post, or maybe we'll try to encourage that specifically with the longer-linking posts (like the ones we've been mostly doing til now but which I'm intending to do less often).

I often also add “call for responses” questions on the end of daily posts to encourage people to respond but sometimes they don't get picked up. Any thoughts on that, or personally what phrasing of call-to-responses would encourage you to respond more often?

- Thanks! Things are being added to the blogrolls slowly but surely, so keep checking. We're also looking to implement a smaller “top 5″ blogroll for each category but the big blogrolls at the bottom of pages are really exciting for us too – feels great to provide a useful resource like that.

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Ecclesiastical Discipline August 4, 2010 at 5:51 am

Thanks for taking the time to respond. This is just such a cool idea and I want to help make it better with you. :)

- On verbosity and style of posts – I feel really different about how this week went. Posts seemed more varied and didn't seem quite as bloated. I felt more interested in pursuing links.

- In terms of editorials….maybe I've just missed some of what you were intending here. Maybe you have had such questions and they just didn't stand out? I thought about it after I posted and realized that a lot of what seemed odd to me was that the powers that be here don't really have their own blogs. Somehow the part where I don't get to here you rant about the latest WoW topic or groan over the Cataclysm trees for your class or what have you is telling…..it's maybe weird but it's a getting to know you thing. I can totally respect a site just reposting good links…but I wont fall in love with it unless the people behind it feel real and 3D.

- If there is a way to see the blogroll, I can't figure it out at all? What do I clicky on?

- One more point – seeing multiple links to a source in a post can be annoying. I keep trying to mose over them and making sure its not something new you are referring to. Just like detailing an abbreviation once in an academic paper is all you need….linking once to content is all cool.

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Rebecca Judd August 4, 2010 at 5:10 pm

Thanks too, for keeping up with the feedback :) I appreciate it – while we can't do everything for everyone, we want to make this as useful for our readers as possible. And best way for that to happen is to hear from you guys, so – great, thanks.

- Great to hear that about post style. It's one of the things I'm playing around with most and looking for feedback on (and will soon be the subject of a reader poll) but that really is good to hear. Would you still be interested in reading longer-link posts, styled as they were the first week, occasionally?

- Your point on the editorials and the writers feeling real looks like an important point to me, but I think we each need to be a bit clearer. I'll clarify a couple of things from this end – firstly, this isn't (only) a wow blog, and it *is* primarily an aggregation site aiming to provide a service for the community. I've reworded the about section in the left toolbar to hopefully make that clearer.
Secondly, the purpose of the editorial features is a two way thing. For us writers at the Pot they're a way for us to relax, stretch our writing legs and talk about subjects in games that we just want to give our own opinion on rather than provide links for. It's a bit like our own blog corner. For you as readers, the idea is that it gives you something fresh to think about, and hopefully gives us space to show you a bit of personality.
So, does that make any more sense, or do you still feel the same way? And, do you feel the same way about all of the writers here, or moreso about those who post less often? I know that I at least have writing you can follow at another site (World of Matticus – Mimetir) but the others don't have their own wow blogs – just a lot of wow knowledge and love of these games.
Can you think of anything that would make you feel more like you understood/got to know our personalities?

- Blogroll. Yupyupyup, the blogrolls are there. At the moment the main blogroll can be found at the bottom of each category page. So if you click on “World of warcraft” on the toolbar below the header and scroll down you should see the mass-blogroll. Putting it down there may be a little out the way but given the amount of links that are going to end up there, it just won't fit in the sidebar. Which is why both the mainpage and the sidepages are going to end up with smaller and carefully selected lists of recommended/recently linked blogs. In the case of category pages, those smaller lists aren't there yet.

- Thanks for that thought on multiple links, that's really useful. We've been multi-linking the same post as it's something another well known aggregation site uses to great effect, but we might well try linking just once in the main post and once more in italics at the end. I suspect this will also be the subject of a poll once we've tried it a few times to see if people found repeated links a useful reminder or an annoyance. Thanks for bringing it up!

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Ecclesiastical Discipline August 6, 2010 at 5:47 am

I really love giving feedback when it's appreciated. Thanks for being really tuned in and receptive to suggestions. :)

- The post style has continued to feel like it has a little more variety in nature, is more focused current blogging topic I haven't heard about, and has clearer hooks for follow ups from other bloggers. Everything that I suggested (though I'm not trying to take the credit here.)

- On editorials. Yeah. I get your point, and I think what you are doing is really cool even if it doesn't give a lot away personally to the readers. I've gotten a better feel for your voice over time…and you do most of the writing and I've been following you over at Matt's little realm of internetdom for a while… I think more personal voice could come through in regular and editorial articles..more personal experiences or spin on a topic, or an alternate opinion, a personal story…something. My metaphor for you is this…it's like reading a novel with a kick as world, but you can't quite relate to the main character. I'd really love to see a strong personal note from someone, not in every post, or even from all of your contributers, but like once a week…something that resonated that way. You don't have to go there, and I'll still think this is a valuable resource. I feel like I should shuffle off and pet the sparkle ponies now.

- Okay, I'm not an Internet dunce and I needed explicit directions to find the blogroll…that's not great. Oh, but I'm on the short list, so I should totally stop complaining. :) As opposed to the sidebar where it will eat small children for breakfast, why not a subheader/tab link to a page? If you'd like to feature people…then a like at the bottom for a complete list would fix that.

- Thanks for hearing me on the multiple links. It's felt a lot more clear lately. Curious about the feedback on that one.

Really enjoying your content, and glad you're listening!

Also, is there anything that bloggers can do to support you? Let me know. (other than a link…something that is in the works on my side.)

ED

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Rebecca Judd August 11, 2010 at 4:20 pm

‘pologies for not getting back on this one – slipped my mind! Anyhow. Thanks for letting us know which bits are working better, it really helps :)

Since we’ve moved on to feedback #2 I’ll roll over most of the discussion from here to there, but for now – you asked about anything bloggers can do to support us.

Thanks (it’s really nice to be asked). Can’t think of specifics at present but generally thing #1 is keep writing good stuff for us to tell everyone about! Also, keep telling us your thoughts. Links to us in blogrolls or using our special “featured on the melting pot” button, or retweeting our article-posted tweets, would really help too :)

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