I’ve received a lot of positive feedback from people regarding my post on helping to create user-generated content on the web. So since this seems to be something that people find interesting, I decided to “do a George Lucas” and write a sequel! A long time ago in an internet far far away…..
Thinking about this subject a little more, I started to define what “user-generated content” actually is. Then it struck me – user reviews. Everytime you write a review online, that’s user-generated content. Grading these Make Use Of articles using the five yellow stars at the bottom of the page counts as user-generated content – because you are grading the content. You are pointing people towards the good stuff and steering them away from the bad stuff. You are helping to improve what’s on the web and you are making the web a more useful reference resource for all. This is Web 2.0 in action – adding the human touch to the internet.
Here’s some places where you can leave user reviews.
1. Amazon : whenever you contemplate buying something on Amazon, I’m sure your eyes wander to the user reviews and the number of stars that product has garnered. Then as human nature dictates, you buy the one that is highest-rated. Next time you buy something on Amazon, spend 10 minutes or so grading the product and writing a review. It will help other shoppers later to see what you thought of the item. If the item sucks, tell others to warn them. If the item is great, support the company / author / artist by telling the world how wonderful it is.
Plus look at it another way – the top reviewer on Amazon was profiled in Time magazine last year in which it was revealed that she gets free books sent to her by publishers because she is such a prolific reviewer. So there are some side-perks to reviewing too.
2. Internet Movie Database : as I revealed in a previous article, I check the IMDB to see if a movie is good or bad before I decide whether to watch it or not. I read the user reviews which can be filtered into the good reviews, the bad reviews and whether you want to read plot spoilers or not. Next time you watch a movie, why not grade and review the movie for others? Thanks to IMDB reviewers, I have stayed away from a lot of stinkers and saved myself a lot of money in the process. But I still went to see Poseidon (eek!)
3. TV.com : as much as I try to deny it, I love my TV shows. While I am doing writing like this, I like to have the television on with my latest show. With show pilots starting all the time, some good, most bad, how do I find new shows to watch? TV.com! It’s well-known that the TV networks monitor the reviews and forums on TV.com to gauge viewer reactions. So next time a show plot sucks or you’re mad as hell that your favourite show has been cancelled (“West Wing” he mutters to himself), write a review on TV.com. You might just find that someone at NBC or ABC will read it and take your views into account when deciding whether or not to bring back McGyver.
4. eBay Reviews : similar to Amazon reviews, you can also review products on eBay.com. I can’t write much about this as I don’t participate in this one. Maybe an eBay reviewer reading this can fill us in on some details of how it all works?
Do you know any other good places to leave user reviews?