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Contest Enhancements I'd Like to See

Blog Posted:4/24/2014 10:12:00 AM
I see some recurring issues that Premium members are trying to address when posting contests and I think that PS might be able to fix some of them by enhancing the system. Also, I have some additional ideas.

1. Hide the poems that are in a contest until the contest has been finalized to protect the identity of the poet.

Ideally, only the contest sponsor or judge would be blocked. If this is not practical on a contest level, permit hiding a poem by the poem's author on the "My Poems" page. Then the poet can hide their poem anytime they like. This would eliminate the need to name the poem as specified by the sponsor, provided that contest entries are hidden. Folks don't like to name their poems for a contest and it exposes which poems are in the contest to everyone else as well, simply by doing a search on the poem name. In addition, there are some poets who think the sponsor judges them differently if they can identify them as the author. Hiding the poem protects the judge's reputation as well.

2. Permit one-way messaging from the contest sponsor to a contest author from the contest judging page.

We often get poems that don't belong in the contest or slightly miss a rule. If we can message the author, they have an opportunity to withdraw or fix the problem.
3. Show the date the poem was first posted on the judging page.

Some sponsors want new poems only and depend on the author to date them in the poem body. Showing the actual date eliminates this need.

4. Allow additional PS Premium members to act as judges for a contest instead of only the sponsor.

This would require some additional design, but would help with subjective judging. Authors are cherry-picking their contest entries based on who the sponsor is.

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  1. Date: 4/24/2014 9:42:00 PM
    by the way, I only write poems for contests. They are almost my SOLE inspiration for writing, so to hide my poems, I would have nothing to show every day!!! those of us who are in the know about all the contests can easily guess poems that are for contests, and that is the whole fun. It's in seeing all the entries being written and just comparing them and the different and unique styles of the poets!!

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    cornish Avatar craig cornish Date: 4/25/2014 8:27:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Interesting truths AD
  1. Date: 4/24/2014 9:38:00 PM
    roy, it's all too complicated. when you have people that cannot even follow simple rules or put the right poem into the right contest, how the heck is all this gonna work out?? Of course there is so much that could be done to improve on the contests here, but we are not talking about professional contests. They are all just in fun anyway. Good ideas but I just don't see how they can be easily incorporated!! (for years i have wanted anonymity with the process but the way Soup is set up, I can't see how it is possible)

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  1. Date: 4/24/2014 7:40:00 PM
    I have also seen some contest sponsors ask for a specific title for the poem and yet also ask to have the poet's name on the poem. This seems contradictory. If the idea is to have the poem named so the judge doesn't read it in casual browsing, what purpose does it serve to have the poet's name on the poem as well? Also, I would prefer not to have everyone know that a poem of mine is in a specific contest.

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    Dietrich Avatar Andrea Dietrich Date: 4/24/2014 9:43:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I don't get that either!!
  1. Date: 4/24/2014 6:28:00 PM
    Oh, RE:#3... I once was so perplexed by an entry to my contest that I did a search, found the poet and formerly asked said poet to remove his entry. I got no response, the poem stayed in the contest. Some just don't care. So, I just ignore now. I think in about 5 of my 25 contests, I've awarded a HM to a poem that had nothing to do with my contest, but was MAGNIFICENT. I just couldn't leave it off the list. They were THAT good.

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  1. Date: 4/24/2014 6:08:00 PM
    My Dream-soup would have an area similar to contests, but not be FOR contests. It would be for anthologies/work space. Instead of contestants it would have PARTICIPANTS. Like a workshop. A place for those trying to work on improving the same skill to hang out in a tighter circle and where feedback is not only welcome but ENCOURAGED. As for your ideas, I love the "hide the poems" part of your ideas. I just paid some cash to enter some poetry contests run by a few Canadian Literary journals. Now, as far as soup goes, I never tell anyone to either leave their names off or put their names on. I respect the poets wishes. Some are not comfortable, due to copyright. I was thinking that if a judge says "title your poem ALL ABOUT GREEN (example) the contestant should be able to do that in the title bar, but on the poem page write TITLE: GREED AND ENVY (example, again) That way the judge gets to skip over the poem when reading on the new poems page... and yet the poet does have the opportunity to title the poem his/her way. After all, the title does contribute to the overall affect the poem has on the reader (save for haiku) Good blog, Roy, Gotta fly! Cheers!

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    Jerden Avatar Roy Jerden Date: 4/24/2014 8:44:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    BTW, I would like to hide some of my poems anyway. Just leave the better ones out, but not delete. I delete poems quite a bit to eliminate some of the chaff and keep the better ones more visible.
    Jerden Avatar Roy Jerden Date: 4/24/2014 8:39:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Great idea about a workshop space, Cyndi. I'd love to have a poem really looked at in an iterative way, critique, change, critique, change. And also to do the same with others. I suspect very few poems get a second look here although some of mine have gone through extensive multiple revisions, even after having won contests.
  1. Date: 4/24/2014 1:12:00 PM
    Hi Roy, I totally agree with your points 1 - 3 and #4 would be fun but with many "what ifs". One issue is that many premium members enter contests but they couldn't enter a contest they were going to judge so therefore would not want to judge. Even with #1 in force a judge still could change the results after seeing the names so the only way that would work is to make all results final. Some have used additional judges before like Cyndi and Tim this time but coordination takes some effort. I would say the biggest drawback to #4 is that anyone that cares about contests enter many and would hesitate judging one if they could not enter. Great ideas Roy.

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My Past Blog Posts

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