Let me add some context:
Many people add "Reddit" to their search queries to find authentic product reviews. We fine-tuned a BERT model to extract product mentions from over 4 million Reddit comments and posts with Named Entity Recognition (NER). The result is a list of the most popular products across many subreddits.
No platform (including Reddit) is resistant to fake reviews and spam, but we think it's happening less frequently here for various reasons:
- Redditors and other forum members are more interested in boosting their ego by showing their depth of knowledge on the topic (and correcting others on the topic), whereas corporate websites are more interested in raking profit by displaying (potentially) dishonest information.
- Enthusiasts in subreddits are pretty good at spotting dishonest or fake content, which results in immediate downvotes. The whole karma system helps with trustworthiness.
- Most subs are moderated well and spam gets removed quite quickly
That being said, good fake reviews are technically almost impossible to detect, even with sophisticated network analysis of the reviewer's profile.
Looria is still in Beta and we're working on improving our classification, summarization, and sentiment analysis. Let me know what you think!
The set of incentives means the more successful you are, the more you will directly be attacked in the form of bad faith posts. Reddit is not better because it is a better system or because it has better moderation. Reddit is better because there isn't an entire industry (SEO) devoted to corrupting Reddit posts yet. Even google hasn't done a stellar job of winning that arms race, and they have vastly more resources.
You add value by performing the manual labor of finding and "reading" through posts, but the core value is generated by Reddit's abuse prevention team. If you were to be acquired by Reddit, my trust would go to zero. If you took outside investment, my trust would go to zero. My trust is already a little low because wirecutter specifically avoided items they couldn't get affiliate links for and now they are completely corrupted by new ownership. Wirecutter was the last review site that I used to make a purchase decision.
More than anything, I am worried that the dark mirror of this website, the "reddit optimization" industry is probably just as advanced and validated by efforts like this.
The only stable solution is for each person to curate and maintain their own set of sources, so that there are no high-value metrics for marketers to target. Exactly the opposite of what this service is trying to do.
I hate that it is in my interest for this to never become popular. It's a situation where my faith in the listed products is inversely proportional to the popularity of your site.
It's just an unfortunate alignment that goes against the core thesis of the (great!) idea.
weight ~= max(num_months_existencenum_commentscomment_score, 0 account not active in the past year) or somesuch, obviously adjusted.
Back when searching "best [product] 2014" was actually a way to find good stuff on the internet - fivestar was able to generate those answers on-the-fly. I'd find I'd spend an hour or so researching something like a router, plug "router" into fivestar, and my pick would be at the top of the list. Those days are gone for the same concerns others have raised for your site. fivestar worked until reviews started to get gamed.
This is an awesome website and I see myself using it. I hope it doesn't meet the same fate!
That's great that you are taking that into account, but I'm not totally sure how to interpret the value bars. So I presume a high value means lots of positive engagement. But how does a lot of negative engagement show up? I think it's valuable to know when there is a lot of chatter about something and it's mostly negative. Or when it's controversial.
Maybe something like a statistical distribution graph or weighted color gradient, so you could tell at a glance the density/quality/depth of discussion, and also the distribution of sentiment.
How far back are you searching? I'm noticing products on the top of a lot of these lists that were popular 10 years ago.
If there was a "salty old mfer posting on a forum in 2010" search I'd be much more inclined to use that. Google used to do ok for finding those but the SEO arms race killed it.
I am also curious what sort of spam filtering mechanisms you have in place? Just the spam filters before content ever hit sentiment analysis or relevancy analysis was 98% in my data. I imagine Reddit is better than Twitter, but there is still is going to be spam. What measures do you have in place and do you determine them?
Do you take upvotes into account with weighting reviews? That was/is a concern I had when working with reddit data. I used retweets as a proxy for sorting popularity, but not any other weighting.
I'm definitely interested in this segment as I've been doing it for a long time, if you want to talk please reach out my contact is in my profile.
P.S. Are you raising money from angels? Drop me a note if you are. firstname.lastname@example.org. I really need something like this!
Feedback for fine tuning your analysis: Cyberpunk 2077 is probably on top of PC gaming for the wrong reasons
So yeah, I like it.
The picture shows it does have armrests though. It would be great if you could have some button there to report incorrect information for each product.
A feature request - I’d like to be able to adjust the time frame. Things like basketball shoes move a lot year to year, and it can be hard to find ones from 18 months ago.
> For months i was waiting for the Staples Hyken Mesh chair to drop to a good price. I pulled the trigger at 150ish, received it really fast, and set it up right away. I actually really love the chair, totally worth it. Perfect size for me and i can sit in in for 12+ hours just fine.
> I personally haven't found the thinks to be more comfortable than other chairs, I'd rather go with a staples Hyken. Also, I see these go for much less. This looks like a V1. I sold one like that for $200 in Virginia.
> Hello all, I went on a deep plung into chairs over the weekend to find a good new chair (instead my junky racer/gaming chair that hurt my back and neck. I ended up finding the Staples Hyken and Staples Dexley. I went to store and tried them both out. I really liked the Hyken way more than the dexley....
In the small number of negative reviews I've looked at it seems like around half of them are categorised incorrectly.
I am a sentiment measurement bot. I take arbitrary text input at the INPUT: prompt then reply with a SENTIMENT: output that includes a numeric sentiment indicator ranging from -5, negative to 5, positive, a PRODUCT: output that extracts the name of the product being described and a CONFIDENCE: output that estimates the confidence in in the rating, from 0% where there is no confidence, to 100% where there is complete confidence.
INPUT: For months i was waiting for the Staples Hyken Mesh chair to drop to a good price. I pulled the trigger at 150ish, received it really fast, and set it up right away. I actually really love the chair, totally worth it. Perfect size for me and i can sit in in for 12+ hours just fine.
PRODUCT: Staples Hyken Mesh chair
INPUT: I personally haven't found the thinks to be more comfortable than other chairs, I'd rather go with a staples Hyken. Also, I see these go for much less. This looks like a V1. I sold one like that for $200 in Virginia.
INPUT: Hello all, I went on a deep plung into chairs over the weekend to find a good new chair (instead my junky racer/gaming chair that hurt my back and neck. I ended up finding the Staples Hyken and Staples Dexley. I went to store and tried them both out. I really liked the Hyken way more than the dexley.
PRODUCT: Staples Hyken
You can even use it to extract comparisons. Again output from GPT-3 in italics:
I am a comparison evaluation bot. I take arbitrary text input at the INPUT: prompt then reply with a COMPARISON: boolean output that indicates if the text is a comparison between products and a BETTER: output with the name of the better product and WORSE: product with the name of the worse product
BETTER: Staples Hyken
WORSE: Staples Dexley
I only checked best Laptops. There wasn't a single Laptop which was not listed on Amazon. Case closed for me.
However, I would really like to build this myself or have an open source alternative. Seems like a good idea to search for product recommendations like this.
Every price search engine, review aggregator and services-searcher (think Angie's List or other "find a trusted provider" orgs) since the 90s is either gone or just does affiliate links. So, even if you see multiple stores with links (Amazon AND Best Buy, 2 whole options!), it will only be to stores with a payback vig. Some of these sites will also use advertising to help pay the rent, and of course, eventually allow sponsored products to show up higher in the list.
I loved the idealism of the 90s, when we thought the mere presence of the internet would bring these things to life. It's too bad that the only way to make this stuff work is to basically sell out, if only a bit... and sometimes, the whole farm.
But is it always a sign that such a site or info provider can't be trusted? In some cases, sure. But note that Consumer Reports, one of the oldest and most trusted product recommendation orgs in the US (not trusted by all, of course, but by many) charges a subscription fee AND has affiliate links, and they still continue to survive with some sheen of quality (though, again, some think they are buffoons... I know this thanks to the Internet).
They're pointing out that only products that are sold on amazon, are being aggregated. So the web app isn't fulfilling the claim of "listing Reddit's favorite products", but instead they are listing "Reddit's favorite products that are sold on amazon".
Which causes such issues that another commenter pointed out, there are no ThinkPad laptop models listed as a favorite product for /r/laptops.
BTW, not saying that no model can exist (subscriptions, whatever) but that most implementations appear to fail out and leave us with affiliate links.
But yeah, I jumped over the main point.
These options are part of what makes going to Reddit better than a retailer for reviews
If I ask for antidepressant recommendations I want something with an Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical Code of N06, not some glib remark about exercise. It's great exercise can help you feel better, but antidepressant has a very specific meaning.
If I ask for recommendations for a boat, I want something that floats in water, not some glib remark about how boats sink money. Yes boats a very expensive, but I'd ask "should I get a boat" if I was that early in the decision making process
And an "antique cast iron" is a very vague criteria and will lead to a goose chase, where as recommending a basic Lodge that will do the same job for 99% of the population without throwing them in the deep end of learning how to strip and season a 50 year old pan from scratch
(Not that anyone should be going to Reddit for medical advice/prescription recommendations, though)
Agree with the boat though, excepting those that have obscene amounts of cash burning in their pockets.
It is totally fine for me, if there are affiliate links. You have to pay the rent somehow. However, if it's the site's only focus (excluding products because there is no affiliate link) and the content is obviously auto generated, I have no use for it.
It would have been nice of the creators to get money for the affiliate links, but allow other products to exist on the platform. I think the revenue would still be more than high enough.
Framework Laptop as an example:
Our price aggregation is a work in progress, but our goal is to list prices from any seller, regardless of whether there is an affiliate program.
Our backpack category has more places to buy for example:
Anyway, I’m sure that doesn’t help you get revenue for your site, but since you asked, I wanted to respond.
But agree that this is a good idea. I am clueless about monitors and found some nice recommendations there. Hope to see more improvements in the future.
I also tried a T520, which was a solid laptop in principal (basically just a big x220), but in practice I had issues. The only way to get it with an i7 is to get a gpu with it, so I got the i5 and then upgraded to an i7 manually (nice to have a normal socketed cpu), but as it turns out the out-the-box i7 model comes with extra cooling to deal with the heat, which my own upgrade struggled with. After that, my 520 didn't see much more use. Maybe soon I'll downgrade it again so its more usable.
Edit: Think I got a bit distracted there with my own issues. Also tried the X240 and X250, and both are solid laptops as well. I dont use my X240 everyday, maybe once a week, but its been running strong for years now.
And also search “model number problem” too.
It’s not perfect but it usually works well enough.
Reddit was the last place for online product discussions, that wasn't crawling with affiliate links and astroturfing.
Now that there is a 'data-driven' robot crawling these subs, there is no doubt the volume of spam posts will increase to bump up the numbers on this website's front end.
One day we'll look at affiliate links as one of the 10 major factors that made the web worse.
No, it's had rampant astroturfing for years now - you just haven't noticed. Reddit was never going to be a good product recommendation place, because there's no (1) verified purchase mechanism (2) web of trust mechanism or (3) gatekeeping into who could enter - and without those things, there's simply no way to prevent astroturfing/influence operations - and the same applies to HN.
Certain categories seem like they would be impossible to astroturf, or at least the brands in those categories wouldn't know the ROI on doing an astroturfing campaign.
Two randomly cherry picked categories:
https://looria.com/search?category.subcategory=TVs - this is pretty consistent with rtings.com. Samsung is very likely astroturfing, but LG's OLED are still consistently rated high no matter how much astroturfing and is consistent with my personal experience.
https://looria.com/search?category.subcategory=&category.cat... - do you honestly think a company like Tojiro is astroturfing Reddit or their S&M team even knows what Reddit is?
I remember talking to an accquantance who had a marketer for their kickstarter-esque product and how they leverage reddit to generate interest for their thing via some astroturfing behavior years ago.
For categories like men's shoes, I've gotten more value out of 3-line Reddit comments than I have with 20-minute influencer reviews that are mostly ad-infested infomercials.
I'm somebody that grew up on message boards like SlickDeals and RedFlagDeals so maybe I have a better eye for spotting astroturfing.
I’d list it at third behind seo spam and advertisements.
It's like cream skimming for funding programs which then leaves the core product worse off. It's extractive in nature.
People know how to write content that looks organic. Some people get caught, but others are fairly skilled at slipping marketing material into ordinary threads. I'm not even talking about the karma-farming bots out there--it's much easier for a bot to farm karma on Reddit than for an unaided person.
Even in large niche subreddits like /r/coffee, /r/homebrewing, and /r/skincareaddiction which are all over 1m followers, there's pretty good self-moderation and calling out of astroturfing. /r/skincareaddiction might be the most susceptible to it since there are just so many products and skincare is pretty specific to the person, but I still see folks calling out shill posts and comments.
People call out astroturfing, sure. But when do they call it out? When it's obvious.
For example, the /r/coffee forum always recommends 1-3 particular espresso machines. People are posting hacks where they add arduinos, etc. to control it better. There are github repos to describe all of this. Either its an incredibly elaborate marketing ploy (to sell a couple more $500 espresso machines..) or its organic content.
Also, redditers are incredibly harsh when shilling, etc. is discovered. In the /r/diablo2 forums, a moderator started a Discord for everyone (to play and trade items for Diablo2 Resurrected). He posted an ad (in the Discord) for a site to buy items (frowned upon in /r/diablo2). Redditors did a thorough investigation and kicked this guy out of the sub. So his $100 of profit from that ad lost him a moderator spot and his Discord community.
The risk/reward of sneaky marketing on Reddit is just not there (for many scenarios, I'm sure it still happens sometimes).
Ehhh that depends the subreddit, big corporate products as Disney are highly astroturfed and get downvoted in to oblivion if you call them out. That's why you see alternate subreddit as r/saltierthancrait and r/freefolk.
Their astroturfing gets more agresive as they lurk and comments on those subreddits too.
How much of the astroturfing is called out? 10%? 90%? Certainly nobody thinks it's 100%...
What I am saying is, if your product / marketing is sooo good that it passes the smell test of the relevant subreddits..maybe your not shilling / astroturfing but helping?
Similar to how a lot of SEO advise is: "Create good content". Where is the line here?
The account will have legitimate Reddit activity--basically,
because somebody will be using it as a personal account.
And when someone asks for recommendations for hiking boots
or whatever? "I've been using X for a while now, they seem
I actually think if we were larger we'd have more subscribers who even knew what astroturfing is, how to spot it, and why it's important to shut it down.
There’s no way to tell those two things apart when done well.
Catching the obvious cases only means you’ve caught the obvious cases. Reddit is really naive here. They’ll punish “look what I made” but not “look what I found” . We did it, Reddit! We beat ads!
Also catching the obvious cases can easily create an illusion of competence, which quickly leads to overconfidence.
If it’s posible to recommend a product earnestly,
then you must take for granted that it’s possible
to recommend a product dishonestly.
There’s no way to tell those two things apart when
For products that are almost purely subjective (books, movies, etc) yeah. There's really no way to spot well-concealed astroturfing.
As things become more objective the astroturfing gets a little bit difficult.
If I'm an astroturfer and I say, "I think brand XYZ leaf blowers are the best" but unless I go into some details that recommendation is not going to carry a lot of weight. And if I falsify objective details, things will start to smell more and more like astroturf to anybody that is actually knowledgeable.
Anyone complaining about M18 tools, Toyota vehicle, Kitchenaid mixers, speed queen washers, etc, etc will find their comment shit upon by people looking for a few quick virtue points for dunking on the dissenter and downvoted to oblivion.
Simplifying issues into kids' fistfight isn't even so welcome anywhere.
There are some subs with great expertise, but a lot of it gets drowned out by the former.
I've also had a lot of good stuff recommended to me on reddit over the years. If that was by a marketer, then frankly, the best marketing in the world is "hire subject matter experts to go into amateur forums and recommend good solutions for them" because that's what it feels like I'm getting on a lot of good nitty gritty subreddits.
subject matter experts
There are a lot of audio products out there. It's hard to say what's good and bad without putting each one through some objective measurements, and for some products (ie, DACs, amps, etc) this requires $50,000+ pieces of equipment and/or hours of time.
As someone who's struggling on market research right now, the current situation of these site is pretty bad, hard to get real insight.
This one comes to mind:
There should be a way to see the list exactly as it was on the day the list app was released, avoiding any gaming of it.
The more interesting things are the obvious ones that don't get discussed, but form some sort of an "accepted canon"
For example, the v60, despite being out of the top 10 on /r/coffee, it's assumed if you do pourovers, you have at least some form of this classic coffee maker.
The more interesting things are the obvious ones
that don't get discussed, but form some sort of an
Technical solutions are extremely difficult. A verified purchase mechanism is difficult to do unless you control the purchase platform.
The "easiest" solution is a web of trust, but that has a significant non-technical component by definition.
Measure the general up-votiness of each sub, and scale cross-sub karma based on this value. A +100 post on a sub with 1000 members on a technical topic where people tend to downvote for minor errors is worth way more than a +1000 post on a fast-moving sub that's mostly reposted memes.
I was 18 so cut me some slack ;)
We belive that a product research engine that provides honest and transparent recommendations from trusted sources is still a massive improvement over the current process.
We're not immune to the "garbage in - garbage out" problem, but we do our best to keep track of and remove sources caught getting paid to write fake reviews. Some categories are more prone to astroturfing than others, and we account for that by restricting the sources. Actively curating the sources is part of our daily work.
In Reddit's case this is made even more odious by its propensity for group-think and dogpiling so you can't even call it out once the liking for the product has taken hold.
Borrowing money almost always involves interest but there's a big difference between a government bond and an usury payday loan. Likewise I think that there is a big difference in critical thinking ability between the "reddit" blob of humanity and say, the US senate, subscribers, chemical engineering professionals, people on the Debian mailing list, etc, blobs of humanity. While the lowest common denominator in all groups may be similar I think the mean and medians are in very different places.
But agreed - this _does_ feel like something that could be detectable, over time.
But there are times where things are used as a comparison.
For example; r/buyitforlife's second most mentioned brand is Ikea: https://looria.com/reddit/BuyItForLife
I don't think there are many here who would agree that IKEA furniture is designed for life, far from it.
That's really a lot of errors for a quick review. I like the fact that each product is split in more or less relevant topics, but the actual content doesn't give much hope that it will help me choose products I know little about.
I think the most important thing that Reddit gives is a shared perspective on any purchase where people can comment on others reviews. You don't get that with Amazon, it's always a mix of 5 stars and 1 star reviews and your left to determine if these 5 star reviews are real or not. It's the same with the 1 star reviews because I feel that other vendors may negatively brigade reviews as well.
In the end information for my purchases are sourced from traditional reviews, Reddit, online forums and of course the sellers site. It's not always prevented me from buying something that doesn't work for me but Reddit has by and large been my source of trusted reviews and has never really let me down.
I don't trust reddit product reviews anymore than a top 10 SEO site on google with top 10 best <product>.
It may not be perfect, but in Reddits case you can see a users comment history as well and if they are active on other subreddits not dedicated to a single product or set of products. Redditors also tend to overshare information about themselves, so, you can really tell who's a user and who's not. I could be wrong but it takes more than cat pictures to fool me.
But still it's better than reviews on Amazon and even from trusted professional reviewers. The reason being that with Reddit you can get the perspective of people who have owned the product for a while. Even if all of the reviews on Amazon were real they'd be biased towards the first days of the reviewer having the product. People don't tend to come back 2 years later and post a review.
I have a raspberry pi gathering Reddit comments with an Amazon link in them every hour, then exposing them on Shop By Sub categorized by subreddit, sorted by upvotes.
Same with OP I put my Amazon referral link in there.
It's been decently well-received by Reddit, but I have a hard time getting recurring users. It seems like they just forget about it by the time they need a Reddit recommendation again.
Best of luck in the space OP!
Using the PushShift API, I started backwards in time and searched for a bunch of different regexes I thought were important, slowly creeping my way towards the present.
Using the Reddit API, I wrote a script to do a deep dive into specific subreddits, so I could index more popular ones first.
It's mostly just patience to get the amount of data I've got :) (and PushShift can't be overstated, it's very useful).
A mailing list isn't a bad idea. I'll have to figure out a way where the user can see a sign up box, but have it not be intrusive. I've been thinking of adding infinite scrolling to the most recents on the homepage, too, just for folks who are curious as to what weird things Reddit is talking about
Reddit really is great for recommendations: is less impacted by SEO and marketing that most of the internet, upvoting captures the wisdom of the crowd, and comments usually provide context for their recommendation.
HN is similar actually, though much smaller.
On both looria and redditreads I find it interesting how the products recommended reflect the culture of each subreddit.
I'm also interested in starting up something similar for a particular niche, and would like to hear first hand accounts of the return on investment for aggregators such as these.
I don't do any marketing, most traffic comes from people mentioning it on reddit or from being included in "cool internet stuff" newsletters. I have some ideas for marketing, but I also hate marketing and do enough of it for my day job SaaS.
So I just run it because I really enjoy it! I used to have a newsletter but stopped that as it was too stressful having a regular deadline and dealing with email spam filters. Everything else about the site I enjoy: writing occasional blog posts, looking at culture through the lens of books, finding new books. I really like books: I used to own and run a bookstore, and a book price comparison website in the past.
The two that come to mind at Blindsight by Peter Watts and Wherever Seeds May Fall/any of the other, 20!!!, First Contact books by Peter Crawdron.
You have to disincentivize the feedback loop of product recommendations somehow. Any sort of community based recommendation engine will ultimately result in abuse.
Like others have said, if it does get adoption, results will only become worse and worse over time. Beautiful, fast, intuitive site though!
Vetted.ai (formerly Lustre) is probably the leader in this space.
The love of the MX-5 Miata and the Aeropress are good examples here -- they are both very niche things loved by a very particular group of persons, but I would never recommend either as a general answer to "What car should I buy?" or "What coffee maker is the best?". They are specialized products for specific kinds of people.
Many of the other categories I glanced at look similar.
Also, pianos doesn't make sense, as the Piano subreddit isn't about buying pianos, it is about playing music and learning to play. There aren't even any actual acoustic pianos recommended!
The key with marketing is to have a good to great product and then unleash the marketing floodgates.
For a particular product, sure - but that doesn't matter if the company makes enough money off of that product first, and then releases another one and starts the cycle over again. The company's reputation, meanwhile, takes far longer to decline than that of an individual product, especially if information transfer between buyers is low (which seems to be the case for most casual consumer markets, i.e. not business and professional).
The only problem is - it makes it even harder to sort through the astroturfed comments and bot-driven ad campaigns.
I even see people defend it "you really think a trillion dollar company is going to be advertising here?"
Yes duh? They are called reputation management companies, and they are contracted for plausible deniability.
I've seen it play out like this- a few well placed top level comments that defend a companies actions. Those are upvoted, anything contrary are downvoted.
You can see this when a thread is massively upvoted to a front page, that's something that a company can't really control. They don't have enough voting power. However inside the thread, people won't spend as much time upvoting and downvoting comments. This is where voting rings make the difference, controlling the narrative in the comments.
The companies with rabid fanbases are those that benefit most. If they can control the narrative, the fans will take the bait and run with it.
The obvious solutions are (1) implementing a web of trust and (2) changing the site guidelines to forbid product recommendations. Both of these approaches are super disruptive, but ultimately we need something to either (a) reduce the economic incentive for marketers on HN or (b) make it more difficult for them to conduct their influence campaigns.
Shit, I’ve been called a troll for X-cause or a corporate shill for company-Y.
If I disagree with this person, they most be a troll.
If this person is defending a COMPANY they must be a shill.
Not saying it doesn’t happen ever, but I think people are a lot worse at identifying that stuff than they think they are.
I was presently surprised to see Mullvad number 3 (instead of further down the list).
I noticed that it only gets a B rating due to a decent number of "negative" reviews. However, the majority of these reviews are negative about something else and positive about Mullvad. I think the AI gets confused in cases like that.
My only concern with this sort of capability is now that it exists it will encourage gaming sites like Reddit even more than they already are. This just becomes the next generation of blogspam, fake review sites, and SEO gaming to get your product at the top of the list for "best X". A lot of people for awhile have been adding "reddit" or "site:reddit.com" to their searches to filter this, and so people have already been gaming Reddit for awhile, but this just drives it further up the value chain.
I've noticed a couple of product categories that are interesting to me that are missing here. From your message commenting how it's implemented, it seems like it's extremely labor-intensive to add new product categories; may be you should put something in there for users to suggest new categories to you.
Finally, I'll share a painpoint I often run into into when researching a new purchase: I live in Europe, and for many things a lot of reviews are very US-centric. Some products are not available here, and others are at a much higher price that should change recommendations.
I'm not sure how exactly you could tackle this, if there is any way to distinguish between US-centric reviews... just something I have to work around when looking at laptops, power tools, airsoft equipment...
Arq is a backup software, but the page is all about water carbonator called Aarke. Makes for a fun read.
Kidding. I think.
IMO the core value of using Reddit for reviews was that it wasn't easily searchable. Sure, there's already some astroturfing that occurs, but not nearly at the scale of every other hit you get via Google. Please don't ruin a good thing!
(I see the Yoga there, but it's a pretty different product)
Recency weighting - is this from 4 years ago or last week?
Sentiment weighting - is this people having issues or denigrating the product by mentioning it
Engagement weighting - are people engaging with this content? Are those posting it shilling? Are the people that engage with that content just brigading?
As others have noted this is very prone to gaming.
BERT model seems interesting though...
Still working on the product analysis.
/r/boardgames #2 game is Catan????
No Thinkpad laptops at the top?
If this site is so wrong for communities I know about, I could never trust it for those I don't.
Personally? Concordia. But more likely: Pandemic, Terraforming Mars, Twilight Imperium, and Terra Mystica. Anything in the BGG top 50. There is substantial overlap between the two communities.
Catan is on this app's "favorites" list for an unexpected reason: it's a well known baseline, with a number of major flaws that people want to see improved upon*. So people complaining about the game leads to this algo declaring it a favorite, which is ... unexpected.
To me, this suggests some opportunities to refine the model with sentiment analysis. Just raw frequency analysis will be subject to this kind of base rate effect.
*it's not as bad as your other example, monopoly.
It looks like the sentiment analysis is being done but isn't super reliable. Here's a "negative" Concordia review:
> Concordia - I don't get to play this nearly enough since I really prefer it with 4-5, but the depth-to-complexity ratio just just fantastic. I'm really looking forward to the app implementation so I can get more plays in between actual plays.
This probably affects all products in similar ways but adds noise to the distribution which can affect rankings -- one misjudged call matters far more when the sample size is smaller.
edit: oh and their Wingspan data doesn't include _any_ reddit data, just Amazon reviews. Seems weird to call it a reddit favorite when you have no such evidence, even when you totally should
This site is failing at either sentiment analysis or ranking.
I was an active Reddit user from 2009-2014 and left partially due to the intense groupthink that was forming. Around the time that I left distinctly remember that there were subreddits popping up that were aimed at finding undercover marketing campaigns from long dormant accounts that would otherwise "seem legit". This was a problem then, and judging by some of the comments here, still remains a pernicious problem.
Second, a lot of these recommendations haven't changed since my time in the early 2010s. Just browsing through a few of the subreddits I notice a lot of the same items from 10+ years ago. This reinforces my belief that the cultish groupthink remains strong on that site.
Third, a lot of the "top products mentioned" aren't necessarily good products but rather "entry level" or "bang for your buck" oriented.
If you need a recommendation it is best to stick with an entity that at least explains their testing methods such as Consumer Reports or Wirecutter.
At the end of the day it's all junk you shouldn't buy anyway.