questionshas atc hit a new all-time low?

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Just to reiterate my post from the mentioned thread, a dead post with no activity for 4 days and only 4 upvotes suddenly goes popular at the top spot. And that topic was created by someone with absolutely no deals.woot history - just trying to get their account out of the white zone (which is for unloading and loading passengers only).

I'm just sad that the algorithm wasn't that far off. Anyone still around?

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I saw that and was equally dismayed. I try to ask a question every couple of days just to provide some fresh fodder but my stuff isn't generally related to deals of any kind as I am in credit-card-cooling mode prepping for vacation. I keep coming back hoping to find a good rousing chat but it's been pretty thin for a while now. The most active threads seem to be the ones discussing the fact that there aren't any active threads. At this point we few hangers-on seem to be whistling through the graveyard hoping to find some life on the other side..

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@moondrake: Maybe I should start a new topic, but how do you prep for vacation? Do you set up a savings fund in advance? How do you budget for vacation?

I'll go ahead and start the topic...

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@omnichad: Cool. I also started a vacation topic, but it's different. I'll look for you new topic.

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I usually ask questions only when I really want to know something about something (generally not about a deal) or have something to share.

YAY! for vacation questions! It seems to me that non-deal questions tend to generate the most interesting and lengthy responses.

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Please note that that post has had 205 views. It's entirely possible that some quantity of those were very recent and were enough to push it over into the -popular- tab.

Other than that, I'm in agreement that things aren't working well here, probably for reasons that have been discussed to death.

Here's another set of numbers for you: when I first dropped in today around 10am EDT, the first 30 deals listed in -fresh- included 9 new-today merchants posting total crap and another 4 who joined in the last week also posting crap. Nearly all were Chinese companies; three were socks of the same website, and two or three others were merchants spamming us with advertisements for stuff that not discounted, not on sale, and isn't priced any better than comparable merchandise elsewhere.

We've lost a lot of old-timers, and if I were a newbie looking the place over, I'm not sure I'd be inclined to come back.

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@magic cave: Now it's downvoted to 0 and still #2 on the popular tab :-)

Regarding "new-today" merchants and "new-this-week" users, maybe that should go on yet another tab. Deals from trusted users that are completely unranked should be more visible than being in that sea of junk.

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@omnichad: The vertical ranking of -popular- questions is chronological, so that particular one being in second place just demonstrates that there's not much traffic today.

I like the idea of deals by new members going into their own tab, but I suspect that's going to be a total non-starter since giving us a heads-up that they're new (and therefore not proven to be reliable) would also just possibly discourage new posters, which I'm sure amazon doesn't want. I can't think of any way to ameliorate the problem other than having really attentive moderation that can act very quickly on tattles about the spammers.

For that matter, it would also be really helpful if we could get an official description of what a "deal" is and what "spamming" is.

Oh, well, I guess we'll just have to keep on keeping on, for as long as we can manage it.

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@magic cave: @magic cave: I'm sure Woot/Amazon are driven by traffic - since ad revenue is the biggest incentive for them. Having relevant deals therefore is the most valuable thing to both them and us as visitors.

They don't want to completely disregard new sources of deals, but it would be in their best interest to make it easier to skip those so that the more likely candidates are upvoted more quickly as it used to be.

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@omnichad: To that end I'd say getting the dead deals off the first page should be Job One. Going to a deals site and seeing a bunch of deals that aren't available is even more dismaying than spam. I don;t go to all that may deals sites, but I can't think of a single one that keeps dead deals on the front page.

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@moondrake: Maybe it could make an exception for logged-in users and only for the deals they've already clicked on. That's the only use of dead deals on the popular tab. Seeing that a deal you took interest in earlier is now dead. Surely as part of creating a score for a deal, they keep track of who has viewed what deal.

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@magic cave @moondrake @omnichad : As far as an all-time low goes, it is 7 PM woot time and the 5 featured deals have a combined three comments. Doesn't that say something as well?

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@robingraves: What it says to me is that taking the sponsored/featured deals out of the vote structure pretty well killed a lot of "local" interest in them. The change in comment count totally tracks that timeline. I'm sure merchants who pay for that exposure don't want to see their stuff down-voted to embarrassment, but it seems to me they might also not want to spend money if there's no interest for them here.

Oh, silly me! Do you suppose the Woot PTB don't care who does or says what as long as those sponsor dollars keep rolling in?