in reply to Dealing with CPAN reviews

There is a module that I've used for a long time, and I've never had any problems. For a while, it had no reviews. Then one day while checking the docs, I saw that someone had given it a pretty low score, and I was shocked.

I think you have to keep in mind that when a module does NOT do what someone wants, they complain loudly, but when it works great, no one says anything. It's like working the IT help desk - you only hear from people when they have a problem, when something's broke, etc. No one ever calls up just to say, "thanks! great job!" (although maybe they should!).

Unfortunately, this makes the ratings system kind of worthless....

But it also means that when I go looking for modules, I don't care what anyone else thinks - I try it and form my own opinion. All I really care about is if it works for ME. Hopefully others will feel the same.

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Re^2: Dealing with CPAN reviews
by Your Mother (Archbishop) on Aug 21, 2009 at 17:50 UTC
    Unfortunately, this makes the ratings system kind of worthless....

    I agree with you: negative feedback is easier to give. But I don't think it's worthless. I find it the most valuable.

    When I shop at Amazon for example, I only read the negative reviews. The positive reviews are usually not useful; there is no accounting for taste and passion makes things sound better. Positive reviews tend to be full of emotional, fluffy language which has little specific content but can get you excited to buy something anyway.

    The negative reviews are the most instructive because they tend to be either 1) ill-informed, ignorant, mean-spirited, or 2) cogent and specific with personal/subjective preference often discussed. From either of those I can usually tell more about what I'd think of a product than from the majority of positive reviews.

    There aren't typically enough reviews on CPAN ratings to apply this strategy though. :( Works best with a handful of bad reviews to compare.