AGrant311


quality posts: 4 Private Messages AGrant311

Is it just me, or does it seem that after the Woot page changes, has voting considerably dropped? When the first place shirt doesn't even break 500 votes now, when they would previously average over 700 votes... For a while, I thought it was just the topics weren't interesting to people, but I figured Coffee would be a popular one.
This may have already been discussed. I'm not near as active in the community as I used to be several years' ago.

Mavyn


quality posts: 22 Private Messages Mavyn
AGrant311 wrote:Is it just me, or does it seem that after the Woot page changes, has voting considerably dropped? When the first place shirt doesn't even break 500 votes now, when they would previously average over 700 votes... For a while, I thought it was just the topics weren't interesting to people, but I figured Coffee would be a popular one.
This may have already been discussed. I'm not near as active in the community as I used to be several years' ago.



You aren't the only one who is less active. ;) Yes, there have been a few side discussions about the declines in voting numbers. A few people have commented that they don't participate anymore because of the blank change (and/or price increase), plus there has been a shift in the artists community. Both things change the voting community. I don't think sales have declined, though, so I'm not really sure why fewer people are voting.

Conspiracy theorists: GO!

My speech is not parsing. I am speaking in ellipsis.

Narfcake


quality posts: 281 Private Messages Narfcake
Mavyn wrote:... I don't think sales have declined, though, so I'm not really sure why fewer people are voting.


It has. Neuro documented that here.

newnie


quality posts: 2 Private Messages newnie
Mavyn wrote:You aren't the only one who is less active. ;) Yes, there have been a few side discussions about the declines in voting numbers. A few people have commented that they don't participate anymore because of the blank change (and/or price increase), plus there has been a shift in the artists community. Both things change the voting community. I don't think sales have declined, though, so I'm not really sure why fewer people are voting.

Conspiracy theorists: GO!



/conspiracy on

I think a lot of the hardcore wooters left when woot said, hey our cost to make the shirts is going up, would you be willing to pay more? And the overwhelming response from wooters was - yes, we will pay more to keep the same HQ blanks.

Then quality of the blanks went down (imo) and the price went up. So it was a lose/lose in the eyes of existing customers.

Now woot has found a new audience of people who probably don't know what they were missing before - and they are a lot more casual users. One's who buy when they are interested, but don't participate in the democratic process.

/conspiracy off

AdderXYU


quality posts: 38 Private Messages AdderXYU
Mavyn wrote:

Conspiracy theorists: GO!



I don't think it's very much a conspiracy, but let's see what has happened in the last year:

1) for months, years, whatever measure you like, woot has lost certain demographics shirt-side, even as they gained more viewers. There are people who were very active who rarely come around any more. This has been true for years. Think of any artist you see rarely-if-ever these days. Think of community members who no longer comment. People who are involved in one manner are more likely to be involved in other manners, such as voting.

There are plenty of reasons WHY they left, but let's simply look at the fact of them leaving.

2) Woot is classically for cheapos. Despite $18 being about market-price for a tee for years, people would complain about the $10-$15 price point, and complain more about other sites which dared offer their tees for $12 on the first day/week/month. So when woot upped their price, it is completely likely that there were some buyers who were lost, and others who began buying less frequently.

3) Woot's price hike was predicated on the cost of keeping AA blanks. Imagine the surprise when months later, the blanks changed to a well-known lower quality brand, but the price remained higher. The profit margin increased around $4 per tee, and the consumer got a noticeably worse product. This, as we still see today, had a huge impact on many users. For every person sticking around and saying "man, I wish this was on AA, but I can't buy an Anvil," how many people simply stopped checking? Because months later, there are still new people popping in and saying "guys, my last shirt was awful, I can't keep checking here if that's the quality I'm getting." This is a huge blow, since the one thing I could never fault woot on was an ever improving quality of product, even if the graphics on the product were exponentially worse.

4) The new derby format is a godsend to people who have been crunching numbers and analyzing the site and voting every week just to see the same trash win. Except most of those people have left already (see 1) or, being that they have higher standards for design, would likely have high blank standards as well (see 3). Basically, the change comes from a strong, reasonable mindset, but is enacted at a site that has driven away huge swatches of people with reasonable mindsets. With a majority of woot being of the "POPULAR IS QUALITY" mindset, this is seen as throwing away a vote to many, or else a betrayal of the democratic process. Ergo fewer votes.

I don't think any of this is conspiracy, but facts of what woot has done, how it likely panned out for some users, and compiled together, it's not unreasonable to see a trend that could lead to a downward voting trend. We're in a position where we have positive change coming in a too-little-too-late package, where the people who would praise it have long since been fed up with waiting for a positive change, following up a succession of negative change coming too-much-too-soon, with the one-two punch of higher price and lower quality.

j5


quality posts: 63 Private Messages j5

I see Woot as being on the cusp of mass market retail, but they disenfranchised their early adopter/ dedicated/ hipster buyers a bit early and are in a lull until the user base builds back up, teaming with "Joe and Jane Publics".
Time will tell what that will do to the "vote selections", but I'm sure this is temporary.

move along

thumperchick


quality posts: 234 Private Messages thumperchick

Could it be that Ramy's fan base left with him? That would account for some of the votes in the fog.

cmillard1


quality posts: 6 Private Messages cmillard1

Personally, now that only the derby winner prints, I rarely even look at the submitted shirt designs.

trekmiss


quality posts: 7 Private Messages trekmiss
cmillard1 wrote:Personally, now that only the derby winner prints, I rarely even look at the submitted shirt designs.



Personally, I love the way the derby works now. Finally, there is a chance for good shirts and artists to print that may not have the fan base that others have. I just wish they were printing on good blanks.

neuropsychosocial


quality posts: 171 Private Messages neuropsychosocial
cmillard1 wrote:Personally, now that only the derby winner prints, I rarely even look at the submitted shirt designs.
trekmiss wrote:Personally, I love the way the derby works now. Finally, there is a chance for good shirts and artists to print that may not have the fan base that others have. I just wish they were printing on good blanks.

I think that both of your views are compatible: there is less "return" on the investment of time involved in browsing the Derby entries and voting because one's vote only counts towards selecting the winner, not all three shirts - but the end result of the three Derby selections might be more diverse than when all selections were by popular vote.

I look at the Derby only occasionally, but for different reasons than have already been mentioned. My woot-time increasingly focuses on designs that already printed, whether number-crunching or blank-restocking-questioning. I no longer buy new designs because they don't fit me, so I both care less about what prints and feel slightly unethical clicking "I'd want one." Under the old format, one could see a majority of entries by Saturday, but under the new format, they seem to trickle in over a longer period of time. I think this is probably good for the artists, but I don't have either the time or the habit to keep revisiting to see new entries, and I don't want to privilege early entries by maintaining my habit of Saturday viewing/voting.

RIP A.A. Blanks (Obituary)

j5


quality posts: 63 Private Messages j5

Something I thought about during the wootoff; the new format introduced "click dilution". People have limited time, and where they now check the various woot sites and side sales for product, they would otherwise have been browsing and voting in the derby.

Maybe.

move along

citizencoyote


quality posts: 42 Private Messages citizencoyote
j5 wrote:I see Woot as being on the cusp of mass market retail, but they disenfranchised their early adopter/ dedicated/ hipster buyers a bit early and are in a lull until the user base builds back up, teaming with "Joe and Jane Publics".
Time will tell what that will do to the "vote selections", but I'm sure this is temporary.


This. The old shirt.woot is dead and buried, and the old wooters are either gone or apathetic now. To me the opening of the shirt.woot vaults to print-on-demand is an example of the effort to jump-start sales and rebuild a fan base that was shotgunned by the changes Adder summarized. Until that happens and the new fans start showing an interest in the derby, we'll keep seeing low voting numbers.