MOCpages support blog
Spamming and ratings
A lot of people have been e-mailing me about problems with people "attacking" their creations with low ratings and other similar rudeness.

It's a shame that a select few are ruining things for the whole. I'm aware of these "spamming" problems and have been working on broader improvements to the rating system that will be implemented in the coming months.

Did you know that MOCpages is the biggest LEGO fan community in the world? One in ten people visiting also come to MOCpages! More people visiting means, sadly, more people that can abuse the system.

When the rating system was created in 2003, blogging and social communities didn't even exist. The only thing similar at the time was's product rating system, and MOCpages' was modelled after that. But a lot has changed on the internet in 5 years, and with blogs and social communities everywhere, people are more and more accustomed to "flying in", hiding behind an anonymous shield, and doing whatever they want, nice or not.

Web sites like and are now a much better model for how to request the opinions of millions of people... Instead of "rating" a LEGO creation, you'll be given a way to mark creations that you like. This way you'll be able to easily find creations you like (and builders you like). At the same time, the builder of the creation will be able to see how many people (and who) likes their work.

Update 19-Aug 2008

Many (many, many) of you have suggested these same two things:

  1. "people should be forced to create an account to leave a comment or rate a creation"

    That won't work. People will just create secondary dummy accounts when they want to be rude. More importantly, it will only discourage the hundreds of thousands of anonymous visitors that come to MOCpages every day. Remember that in addition to being a community of LEGO - lovers, we're also a window to the world of LEGO creations to the millions of people that aren't LEGO fans.

  2. "People should be forced to leave a comment when they rate a creation."

    TRUST me, you do not want to see the things people write when they rate a creation 1-out-of-5. I delete dozens of them every day, before any of you even see them... they're usually vulgar, rude, attacking, foolish, or just plain stupid. But besides that, whille 1 out of 10 people rate a creation, only one out of 100 leave a comment. By forcing someone to leave a comment, they simply won't leave a rating. That means you won't get 90% of the feedback you get today.

The bottom line? Forcing people to do things they don't want to do is never useful. No one will create an account or write a comment just because you're forcing them to. The real solution is to come up with a way for people to interact civilly and to build web applications that cater to what people are really doing already.

posted by Sean  # Thursday, July 24, 2008

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