A collaborative review is a collection of pros and cons about a product submitted by and voted on by the ProductWiki community. The result is a comprehensive review that takes many people's opinions into account and highlights the most important aspects of a product.
How it Works
A collaborative review is made up of 2 things - statements and votes. Community members submit and vote on statements. Some examples of statements include "Low battery life", "More durable than its competition", and "Very large 3 in. LCD screen." If you have an opinion about a statement, you can choose to agree or disagree with it, and, with each vote cast, the review becomes more reliable.
Statements are broken up into pros and cons, making it easy to see what's good and bad about a product.
To see the history of a review, who voted, and how they voted, click on the "see how they voted" link. If you're interested in how one person in particular reviewed a product, you can filter on that person.
Here's a short video to give you a working demonstration:
Why it's great
The collaborative review is ProductWiki's answer to the problem of reading and writing product reviews on the Internet. Instead of having to painstakingly go through opinions expressed across multiple reviews, the collaborative review creates ONE authoritative review that incorporates everyone's opinion in an efficient and elegant manner. The more reviewers there are, the more reliable the review becomes. Even a review that with only one contributor is useful, so don't be afraid to be the first!
Here are a few guidelines to follow when submitting a statement:
- Limit one statement to be ONE opinion about ONE aspect. Examples:
- Good - the metallic casing makes it solid and reliable.
- Bad - the color is ugly and it has a bad interface, and the batteries run out quickly.
- Classify the statement as being a pro (a GOOD point about the product), or a con (a BAD point about the product).
- Don't automatically add a pro or con, instead look at what already exists and see if what you'd like to say is already covered. If so, then simply agree or disagree; there's no extra benefit for adding a statement.
- Don't add statements that are just a rewording of other statements, or a combination of other statements. If the point you'd like to make doesn't exist, then submit it.
- If a statement you'd like to make already exists but it's listed as a pro, and you think it's a con, then disagree with the pro, and add a new statement in the con list.
While statements and votes submitted by users with direct experience with the product are valuable, just because you don't own a product doesn't mean you can't contribute. You can extract pros and cons from reading other people's reviews on the web. If you do this, it's good practice to add a link to their review on that product page for both proof and credit to the original author. Also, if an aspect of the product is inherently obvious, you can submit the statement without direct experience. For example, if a laptop weighs 10 pounds, it would be reasonable to submit a con statement like "Extremely heavy." without every owning or using the laptop.