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Add rating (votes) to plugins #90

rasca opened this Issue Jan 17, 2013 · 13 comments


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8 participants

rasca commented Jan 17, 2013

It would be nice if we could rate each plugin based on our experience with it. I think this would require the users to log in. Maybe through your github account?

dflock commented Jan 17, 2013

Yes, completely agree. One of my major issues with the old plugins site was a complete lack of filtering, ranking and social proof.

There are a huge number of jQuery plugins available – and there are usually loads that appear to do the same thing. If I need a new plugin for something – how do I know which one to choose? How do I find out which ones are the best/quickest/lightest/etc.., without downloading and testing all of them by hand every time – along with lots of Googling?

You couldn't – you just had to try out loads, google loads and slowly build up a set of favourite plugins that you trusted.

So far, the new plugins site isn't much better at this.

It needs – on the homepage and index pages – user ratings, download counts, github:forks/stars/watchers, likes, G+’s, etc.. for each plugin. Not necessarily that, but some kind of ranking/social proof/meta data whenever you display a plugin name/link – to allow people to see the communities estimation of which plugins are the ‘best’ – and then you need to be able to filter/sort by this when searching.


ajpiano commented Jan 17, 2013

Of the things listed here, we can order them by complexity and file issues accordingly. The "low hanging fruit" here is to actually show and make use of the data we already have, which is the github forks/stars etc. We should certainly be showing that in the other templates.

User ratings will be something we can add once we have user accounts, which is something we're planning for a bit further down the line.Though I have always been a bit skeptical of these. Something a bit more binary, e.g., allowing people to "favorite" plugins on the site and seeing which are most favorited might work better than the granularity of a star rating system, where everyone's barometer for what constitutes a 5-star plugin, etc can be slightly different.

Download counts could also be challenging, as people aren't actually downloading files from us, so that download link isn't a hit on our server...

Not sure how we feel about integrating social media things e.g., FB likes, G+ etc. Can feel a bit noisy, but could be a lot easier to integrate in the short term than our own user account stuff.

In principle, though, +1 on this issue 👍 - we definitely want the site to be better at indicating which plugins are trustworthy and useful and know it isn't quite "there" yet

Showing the forks/stars in the search results would already be a major step forward.
I personally very much like the voting system of stackoverflow but it clearly also needs some form of registration.
The combined votes should then be used to define a reputation for the submitter of plugins.

niutech commented Jan 17, 2013

+1 for rating, at least for now you could easily add sorting by popularity (pageviews), as in Issue #99.


jzaefferer commented Jan 18, 2013

There are endless potential metrics, but for each one we need to prove their usefulness first, their potential for being gamed (or prevention of that) and their effort for implementation. Data has to be available to WordPress, without adding crazy complexity.

Generally we should look at other sites, like Firefox Addons, Drupal modules and npmjs.org.


jzaefferer commented Jan 18, 2013

See also #62, which looks at Drupal.

niutech commented Jan 18, 2013

Measuring popularity by page views or download counts is the most simple and widespread method, included in milions of blogs (e.g. "Popular Posts" in Blogger), add-on repositories ("Most Popular Extensions" in Firefox) or module directories ("Most installed" in Drupal). So why don't you implement sorting by popularity?


jzaefferer commented Jan 19, 2013

We track page views in Google Analytics, but don't have that data easily available in WordPress. We don't have any data for downloads or uses of plugins.

niutech commented Jan 19, 2013

Since it's Wordpress, you could simply activate one of the PostViews, Popular Posts or Google Analytics Top Posts plugins, as well as the PostRatings plugin.

Yep, it would be brilliant and add so much value to that site if there would be something done along these lines quickly. Apart from just showing it as information for each plugin, it would also be good to have a "top plugins" below the "recent updates" in the sidebar. And yeah, a sort by popularity as well as ratings (down the road at least) would be even more helpful. Keep up the good work.

nacin commented Jan 20, 2013

A few thoughts, from my experience in managing the WordPress plugins directory:

  • Ratings aren't a particularly helpful metric. You end up with clusters of 1 and 5 stars. We're now tying them directly to reviews of plugins, similar to how Google Play and the App Store work.
  • We also have a "it works" versus "it's broken" compatibility metric, which is a many-to-many relationship — version of the plugin versus a version of WordPress. This can be helpful for filtering out plugins that haven't been updated in a while and don't work on the latest version of jQuery. Just as ratings are now tied to reviews, when a user reports a plugin as broken, it takes them to the support forums.
  • Downloads could be tracked by proxying the download (or triggering a Google Analytics event), but that isn't a great metric, either. Even less so, since in many cases, the user will be going directly to the repository. But in general, they don't reflect usage, and could fluctuate wildly (such as the plugin that likes to tag once a week). We are moving away from download stats and toward usage stats, which obviously won't apply here.
  • Leveraging existing GitHub metrics is a fine idea, especially as an initial attempt at metrics. I would imagine there is a GitHub social/share button that enables one to star/watch a repository from another website?
  • Favoriting has worked really well, both as a metric for how popular a plugin is with users, and as a tool for users to keep track of plugins they like. Tying favorites into an activity stream (Plugin X has received an update) is something we plan to do soon.

niutech commented Feb 12, 2013

Any updates? Browsing tens or hundreds of similar plugins without any hint like rating is like groping in darkness. It's easy to find low quality plugins, which don't have good support etc.

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