With all the commotion over on today’s very popular story, where the mysterious simonwilson5 accuses some FF news contributors of cheating the News voting system, the FF team feels some explanation is due.
Forex Factory doesn’t have the same ‘multiple personality’ problem you’re used to seeing on other sites; at least not to the same extent. We’ve always taken this problem very seriously, and about a year ago we developed a sophisticated system called 1P1U (stands for one-person-one-username) that identifies and blocks multiple username activity by looking at more than just IP addresses. If you’ve ever tried to post/vote with a second username you’ve most likely had a run-in with 1P1U. The system is far from perfect but overall it does a great job, especially when it comes to stopping unethical behavior, and we are constantly improving it.
The bottom line is you can be assured that FF news providers are not ‘cheating’ the vote by having one person vote with multiple usernames.
We are well aware that the vote is being manipulated by many news providers. And we’ve spent countless hours analyzing and investigating this. The primary way it’s being done is by providers telling their friends/fans/visitors/students/employees to vote on the stories they’ve posted on Forex Factory. We estimate that 95% of the unrealistic vote counts are a result of this method.
Is it cheating? We don’t think so. Most of our commercial news providers want as much traffic to their website as possible, so we think it’s perfectly natural that they will ‘play the game’ to get more exposure for their news submissions. We take most of the blame for having a system that can be manipulated so easily that it creates a game-like environment.
Work in progress
Please know that we’re not at all happy with manipulation controlling which stories are the most visible. We realize that’s the current situation and it’s been bugging our team for a long time!
If we knew a way to eliminate vote manipulation, without tight restrictions on voting, believe me it would be done by now. After a lot of meeting and discussions and trying new things out, we think the best solution is to increase community participation in the News section so that manipulation has little effect. The transparent voting initiative is part of our plan to increase participation, and there’s a lot more on the way.
Our plan is to tweak the News systems until we achieve our goal of having the most useful stories be the most visible. To us it’s all about getting the relevant news right in front of you and getting the junk out of sight. Sure we have a long way to go, but with some layout re-designs, vote formula changes, transparent voting, and policy shifts, we definitely think we can get there!
Want to help? Vote regularly!!! A powerful community vote mutes manipulation and brings the best stories to the top! Submitting good stories you find around the Internet is also very helpful.
I hope this clarifies a few things! And rest assured we are reading your feedback everywhere it’s posted!
Posted by Sidney, Forex Factory Director of Marketing