The member ranking system in the Toshiba Forums provides a way for visitors and fellow members to approximate the relative experience of others within the community, and to consider that when reading messages. These ranks have been unchanged since the community launched in December of 2008, but over the next few days weeks we will be implementing new sets of ranks with the intent to provide a bit more insight, especially into the roles of our more experienced community members.
The ranking system is automated by the forums software with each rank level defined by a set of measurable action and value pairs (e.g. Message Posts = 20.) To date, all ranking has been based simply on each individual member's count of logins, message posts, message views, time spent in the forums, and time as a Toshiba Forums member. But the software allows for much more complex formulas that include other specific measurements such as Kudos given, tags created, Kudos received, Accepted Solutions posted, new topics started, replies to topics, and others.
For the most part, the changes coming to the ranking system involve adding new ranks which are more descriptive of different types of forum activity tracks, broadly classified as Member, Participant, Organizer, Builder, and Advisor; and their are multiple levels within each track.
Through these more granular and role specific ranks, we hope to provide more recognition into various types of experience and expertise that members are sharing with each other here in the community, whether it be helping improve the findability of high value messages by tagging and Kudo'ing, creating new topics of discussion, or providing answers & advice to those seeking help here.
Having said all that, please keep in mind that this is an imperfect automated system. We will tweak & tune to try to make it as useful as possible, but none of this should discourage you from using your own perceptions and judgment when evaluating feedback and advice, regardless of the rank of the individual whose message you're reading. The newest members may provide invaluable advice and the most seasoned experts are not immune to human error.
Thanks to all who are part of this community for making it the valuable resource that it is today, and thanks in advance to all who be part of its ongoing success.
Well, formulating the boolean logic expressions to assign Ranks based on various combinations of variable metrics tracked by the forum software turned into a pretty complicated exercise, but I'll be rolling out the Rank changes over the next couple of hours.
I'm not expecting any unintended consequences to result from the changes but please send me a Private Message if you believe the Rank changes have introduced a problem with your use of the forums.