Site Updates: Rating Scale & BOS

Discussion in 'BeerAdvocate Talk' started by Todd, May 26, 2013.

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  1. Relik

    Relik Aspirant (202) Apr 20, 2011 Nova Scotia (Canada)

    im all for the 3.00 being under the "okay" label. Average can be a grey area in rating
  2. Todd

    Todd Founder (5,493) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Subscriber

    Please keep in mind that these pulldowns are universal and being used for not only Hads, but each category pulldown when doing a full Beer or Place review.
  3. nsheehan

    nsheehan Devotee (457) Jul 3, 2011 Texas
    Beer Trader

    In that case, I think Woosterbill has the best suggestion so far, although I would tweak 5.00 to be world-class, as for a full beer review that's what it corresponds to.
    Whether or not the half-integer words are needed is not a large concern of mine, although I do like it. However, I think disappointing is a little too loaded a term to use.

    I suggest (emphasis added for integers, as they are the numbers needing a term):
    1.00 - undrinkable
    1.50 - terrible
    2.00 - bad
    2.50 - poor
    3.00 - average
    3.50 - okay (or some other similar term)
    4.00 - very good
    4.50 - excellent
    5.00 - world-class
  4. Michigan

    Michigan Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2012 Michigan

    All I'm saying is if the average across the entire site is 3.75 (random number I chose), that should be labeled as "Average". I assume that a plot of all the ratings across the site is not a normally distributed bell curve. I would guess it is negatively skewed (most are scored above 3.00). Having a grasp on the mean, median, and mode of the stats on this site would help us draw better conclusions.
  5. Todd

    Todd Founder (5,493) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Subscriber

    There's a BIG difference between what an average across a data set (changes daily) is and the average within a rating scale set (fixed) is; changing the latter should never be done.
    Michigan, tehzachatak and ehammond1 like this.
  6. tehzachatak

    tehzachatak Initiate (0) Sep 19, 2010 Massachusetts


    Nevertheless, this is still also true. Can we get these for each style & sitewide? That would be very nice, and one would think, easy to implement.
    Michigan likes this.
  7. Michigan

    Michigan Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2012 Michigan

    I agree! I'm not asking for anything to be changed. I would like to have the numbers.
  8. ChanChan

    ChanChan Devotee (469) Dec 12, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    Anything is better than the brief time when a beer would show up as rated 2.68, 4.32, etc!! That period sucked!!
  9. Todd

    Todd Founder (5,493) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Subscriber

    Getting access to the numbers, while fun for some, is irrelevant to this thread, but something we could look at including down the road.

    Back to the topic: feedback on the 1-5 rating scale pulldown words.
  10. mudbug

    mudbug Zealot (594) Mar 27, 2009 Oregon

    5-Superlative,World Class
  11. RedneckBeerz

    RedneckBeerz Initiate (0) Sep 17, 2011 Massachusetts

    "Keep it simple stupid" is a saying that I've always tried to stick with since I first got into craft beer drinking almost two years ago (yeah I know to you old timers I'm still green around the gills, but that's ok with me). I'm not going to rack my brain trying to figure out the logarithm of how a 4.2 rating = a 93 (and really, I could care less). To me, a 4.75 - 5.0 is a world class beer, 4.5 outstanding. 4.25 excellent +, 4.0 excellent, 3.75 excellent -, 3.5 very good +, 3.25 very good, 3.0 good or average, ect. So I suppose by this "new" scale I've under rated every single beer I've ever consumed.
    Why not "keep it simple stupid" and go with a 1 - 100 scale?
    Most of the time I try to rate a beer based on the style guidelines. Sometimes if I feel a brew has an average that is lower or higher than I think it deserves, then I will rate it higher or lower than I normally would.
    Lets look an example : Westbrook Gose (since I just recently had this brew). It has a 4.29 average yet it has a BA Score of 94 = exceptional (really, don't try to explain how 4.29 X 2 (on a scale of 100 as opposed to a scale of 1 to 5) = 94). Yet Stylistically, it is the highest rated Gose. So my point being, if it's the highest rated Gose, why is it not World Class for it's style?
    I think I've gotten off my own track here, but basically it comes down to this for me. I'm not going to spend all day rating a simple water, yeast, malted grain, and hop fermented beverage. I'll rate my brews the way I rate my beers and you are more than welcome to rate your beers the way you wish to. Cheers and Best Wishes to all, Gary W. Maness aka Red Neck Beerz
  12. frothyhead

    frothyhead Initiate (108) Mar 14, 2007 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Whatever the scale, you should avoid mixing objective words and subjective words. The word "average" is an objective word with mathematical implications. Mixing it with subjective words like "good" and "bad" will likely skew your scale. "Okay" is a better subjective word for the middle of the road. "Satisfactory", "Decent"...

    I also appreciate the .5 scale descriptors being tossed around here. Some of them make a lot of sense and give more nuance which COULD lead to more accuracy in a world where there really is a notable difference between a "very good" beer and a "world class" or "exemplary" beer.
  13. RedneckBeerz

    RedneckBeerz Initiate (0) Sep 17, 2011 Massachusetts

    I just had to chime back in one LAST time since I just went to rate an Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale which has a 4.0 average (by the "new" scale this is very good), yet it has a 90 BA Score which is Exceptional. Really, WTF is up with this system?
  14. nsheehan

    nsheehan Devotee (457) Jul 3, 2011 Texas
    Beer Trader

    I wouldn't try figuring it out, but it roughly breaks down like I said in an earlier post in this thread. The number of reviews for a beer also matters. Here you are:

    Looking at some Boston Beer Co and Stone reviews, it looks like (roughly) 3.5 is the cutoff between average and good, and 4.0 is the cutoff between very good and exceptional. Scores with 4 and above correspond to the 90's (exceptional), scores in between 3 and 3.5 (Average), scores in between 3.5 and 4 (good and very good). A beer with an average score of 4.00 is either Very Good or Excellent when looking at reviews.
  15. Todd

    Todd Founder (5,493) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Subscriber

    This is completely unrelated to this thread, but 90 (the beer's BOS based on its WR) is, and was before this, "exceptional." As for the beer in question, it's literally on the border of exceptional/very good.

    You're confusing the BOS with the 1-5 rating scale.
  16. RedneckBeerz

    RedneckBeerz Initiate (0) Sep 17, 2011 Massachusetts

    Thanks for the link. The BOS system makes alot more sence to me than the 1-5 scale system. Thanks & Prost Todd !!
  17. SeaAle

    SeaAle Disciple (397) Jun 24, 2012 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    I prefer okay over average. Average is too vague.
  18. zachary80

    zachary80 Devotee (492) Nov 29, 2009 Indiana

    You make a valid point that I think brings up another issue that seems to be affecting some of our opinions:
    Should the wording be used to influence the user/review or should it remain neutral, like in professional literature?
    I'm not sure of the official position on this, and I think it is important to how the scale is selected. Personally I think it should be biased, emphasizing both the average in the middle and the fact that giving a 1/5 is at an extreme.
  19. nsheehan

    nsheehan Devotee (457) Jul 3, 2011 Texas
    Beer Trader

    So I don't pay attention to everything, but it looks like words now accompany the numbers when I Had a beer (not sure if they were there two weeks ago, but there are now padding 0's, so pretty sure it's new).

    4.00 is given the word Good. That is not accurate. Not a single beer with a 4.00 rating is called Good. They are called either Very Good or Exceptional. I am pointing this out for consistency.

    While we're on that topic, calling 5.00 Awesome does not jive with a 5.00 very plainly representing a World Class rating on this site. I don't think anyone can soundly argue 4.00 should be Good instead of Very Good or Exceptional, and 5.00 should be Awesome instead of World Class. Consistency should win out, and the words that most closely match the terminology of full review should be used.

    In the end, I'll use the numbers. I just think the consistency will help BAs respect beer. And I'll think I'll have another one myself.
    devilben02 and Kerrie like this.
  20. Mebuzzard

    Mebuzzard Poo-Bah (3,448) May 19, 2005 Colorado

    A little bug in my mind fixates on the "to style" portion of reviewing/rating. The above suggestions (poor, average, good...) seem to me to be subjective insofar as taste and enjoyment. I mean, how can the aroma of a beer be average to style? Maybe something like, "way off, slightly off, and spot on" could be considered. Maybe these would differ with each category (A,A,T,F,O) and then the overall score would have something different again.

    Right now, I rate the Overall score as a combo with to-style and my enjoyment (and have given no straight 5s...yet). To-style may require more familiarity with beer, and thus may be off-putting for non-geeks. Just food for thought
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