PostLoop - Great concept but perhaps too strict?


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I recently discovered PostLoop while looking for other ways to drive activity on my forum, and it is sort of a post-exchange service. You can subscribe to forums to earn points, and these points can either be used to promote your forum or they can be withdrawn for real cash. I thought I'd give it a go, when I first put my forum up, I got quite a few bits of new activity. I then decided to apply for being able to earn points by posting on other forums.

They require you to have excellent grammar and be able to write good quality content. When applying, you have to subscribe to their portal, and make ten good quality posts. I did so, I made several more than asked as I was getting into the discussions on the forum there. Almost all my posts were at least a couple paragraphs long. I got a notification that they were pending for approval.

The next morning I got this email:
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I kinda feel disappointed with the system now. I mean, just what is expected of me, they do not clarify any further, they deleted all my posts on the portal, and have forbidden me to reapply every again. For all I could tell, my grammar was great, not 'okay', and that's coming from someone who is mildly dyspraxic. Do they expect me to write a full dissertation, completely proofread? I find this system is actually fairly bad to be honest. I honestly think the best forum posts actually engage with the community rather than long winded posts. I found that quite a few of the posts users made from PostLoop felt fairly robotic, and talked more about a subject than what is needed. I was always told in college to be concise, don't waffle on and on just to up your word count.

I've put what I posted on their Support Forum in the following spoiler tag (which have yet to receive a reply):
Post One:
Well, this service honestly looked like a great opportunity, but unfortunately it fell short for me.

I went to apply for a posting account so I could provide points to those who would post on my forum, I made a bunch of posts on the portal like asked and I attempted to get involved in the community, yet I was declined and pretty much told that I would not be able to reapply.

I know one or two of my final posts were probably short, but most of them were fairly long (one or two paragraphs long). I was told that my posts still were not long enough and that my grammar was 'okay'. I'm not really sure what is expected of me, am I supposed to write complete dissertations? Am I supposed to be a English professor? Did my dyspraxia affect my grammar? I just do not know, I can't even look back on my posts from the portal, as they have all been deleted.

Because of this, I think I will unfortunately remove my site from PostLoop as I am currently too broke to purchase points (that's the price for hosting and brilliant forum software, an I right? Haha. I'm not saying that this is a poor service, and that it shouldn't be used. By all means try and get accepted, I got quite a few fantastic quality posts and new members when I had some point, I'm just saying that it didn't work out for me, and don't be too disappointed if you are rejected in the end.

Farewell members of PostLoop, I wish you all the best of luck with this service :)
Leon Fletcher

Post Two:
Just thought I would come back an offer some suggestions to perhaps improve on the system, you don't have to take anything away from it, but they may be useful anyway:
  • I would possible add some more detailed guidelines in what you are looking for to get approved. Perhaps some statistics on what would normally be approved or maybe even an example of a good enough quality post, compared to a post that just doesn't quite make the cut.
  • Perhaps rather than rejecting applicants and disallowing them to reapply, I was thinking maybe it would be a good idea to give another chance to them (assuming their post quality isn't extremely low) and give them some pointers on how to improve. Show them what posts are good, which need improvement, and which are total rubbish, making sure you are being constructive
  • Don't delete all the posts on the portal from those you rejected. Some of them could be quite good, and it would also be good to reference back to in case of rejection
  • Try looking at people who stir up a good conversation. It's one thing to post your thoughts on a thread, but it goes to the next level when you actually interact with the members. Also, sometimes replying to members doesn't call for a long stream of writing
  • I am unsure how you decide on good posts so you may already do this (or something similar). I was thinking to maybe do a score system for posts against each criteria. Once you have taken the scores, you can produce an average, and if that average is, say, more than 20 out of 30, then their account if improved
I really hope what I have said above helps at improving the service :)

After doing a bit more research, I actually started to feel that the owner doesn't really care. I looked through support posts, and whenever he did reply to them, they were simply just linking them to the FAQ (even if they said that they followed the exact instructions). It feels cold and unwelcome. I know that it may be annoying repeating yourself, but if I were in his position, I would actually engage with potential customers more in support posts.

When he did have more to say, he was always on about how first impressions count and referring to job interviews. I would agree with him to an extent. One thing I saw him say, was that you just can't go back to the employer and ask for advice on how they could've improved... a lot of employers actually like that, it shows that you are determined to improve yourself. He has also said in the past that once rejected from employers, they will not give you another chance... that is a complete lie (or it is from my experience). Every job I got rejected from, I was told that I could re-apply for a similar position in about three or six months, in fact, one of my previous jobs rejected me the first time.

I was just wondering if anyone else has gotten a similar story, or perhaps a success story from PostLoop. It honestly does seem like a fantastic opportunity, but I guess I was just unlucky =/

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