> (Somewhere in there the fact that the
> research was based on an existing compendium of Marvel lore and
> not done from scratch was missed.)
Slashdot readers are notorious for not bothering to read the content of
messages before they comment. It's a combination of two things, as far
as I can tell: the "first post" issue, and the "slashdot effect" issue. The
prestige of the "first post"--which means that the first person to write a
well-moderated message--is far more likely to have their message read than
later contributors. Because ratings are done entirely on the patience of
readers, early posts get rated more and replied-to more, thus earning their
posters the currency of slashdot, "karma." Karma can be spent on rating
messages, rating other raters, and bumping ones own messages up higher in
the ratings chain.
The other factor is the "slashdot effect:" the combined weight of thousands
of geeks clicking on a link moments after it is posted can take down, or at
least strain, an ill-prepared web server. So many slashdotters assume the
server won't work, and don't click it.
It's illustrated here:
> Slashdot itself would be an interesting social network to study;
> there's a peer ranking system where people hand out points to
> posters depending on how highly they rank their comments, and
> only the high ranking comments get shown to readers who
> configure their accounts accordingly.
Slashdot is actually two (or more?) overlapping networks. Posts are rated
numerically, from -1 (representing junk) to +5 (brilliant). By default, most
users read at "1", meaning they see only comments that have been rated well,
or comments that come from established users. Comments from anonymous
readers are at 0, comments that are obviously junk messages get rated at -1.
Few users bother to read at -1, which means that there is an entire group of
people who intentionally post conversations among each other at -1, make
snide comments about other users, and generally revel in the fact that they
cannot be moderated lower.
Yes, it is a group fairly worth studying, both for networks and other