The Slightly Confused Woodworker

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One Star


Since, I’ve been writing this blog I’ve tried to make it clear that I welcome any comments, criticism, etc. For that reason I’ve opted to include a rating bar at the top of each post I publish. Having a rating bar may be nothing more than setting myself up to be disappointed, but I honestly like to know what people think if they feel so inclined to make me aware. However, I do have a disclaimer; if you do not like a particular post-which wouldn’t come as a shock-and you feel the need to give it a poor rating, I would like to know why. It seems that a person, or persons, has been giving my posts “one star” ratings. My recent posts of the past few months may not be top flight material, I admit, but this person, or persons, has seen fit to also do the same for many posts from my archives, most of which are fairly innocuous.

Here again, I have no problem with a “one star” review, not in the least. In fact, from certain sources I consider a poor review a victory. But I do believe that leaving poor reviews without any explanation basically destroys the whole reviewing process and gives it little or no credibility. Remember, I’m not a professional blog writer. A poor review does not hurt me financially. I don’t sell tools, t-shirts, books, or woodworking plans on this website. The only thing I have to offer is my time and my thoughts. And while I’m on the subject, being that I’m not a professional woodworking writer, I don’t take offense to poor reviews or a critical comment. If you leave a critical comment here because you don’t happen to agree with my opinion, I happened to offend your opinion, or maybe you just hated the post, you will get a civil response from me. Don’t get me wrong, I will defend myself and my position, and try to offer an explanation, but I will not insult you, or deride your opinions. I’m not a pussy, I don’t believe in insulting people on the internet and would rather leave the insults to the professional woodworking writers whose opinions are so much more valuable than mine because they seem to take a real joy in it.

So the bottom line is: hate away, I honestly welcome the feedback. But if you do hate something I’ve written to the point that you decided to vote on it, I would appreciate it if you would take the time and let me know why.



  1. bloksav says:

    I like the “Leave a reply. I’ll respond even if…”
    That aside, I agree that a poor review isn’t particularly helpful unless the person expresses what the issue is.
    But perhaps giving a poor “star” makes someone out there feel better, if that is any comfort.
    Maybe you get those comments and marks because your blog is anything but beige and mediocre. My blog is just the usual run of the mill: I have made this bla bla bla, I use this tool bla bla bla etc. Your blog is one of the few I have found that actually expresses a strong opinion.

    • billlattpa says:

      I really have no issue with a poor review, in particular if it’s because the post was poorly written, or boring. But if the poor vote is just because the reader didn’t agree with my opinion, then that is what the comment section is for.
      Thanks for the vote of confidence, and I think your blog is really great.

  2. dzj9 says:

    Yeah, what Jonas said.

  3. Years ago I built barns for a living.
    A salesman, for the same company told one of our foremen: “it takes good material and careful, skilled labor to build a barn. Any jackass can kick one down ”
    Keep on blogging.

  4. Do you know who your typical reader even is? Are they man, woman, young, old, middle-aged, rich, poor? Are they woodworkers or people who just like to read blogs? Until you know your audience, it’s hard to qualify what a poor rating even means. Which is why leaving a comment is always better if someone disagrees with you.

    A few months ago I wrote a blog about a piece of painted furniture and had a poll about what readers thought about it. As I guessed, it got trashed. Hardly anyone liked it however, when my wife took it to a design show, it sold in 30 minutes. Obviously the target market that my wife sells to is completely opposite of the people who read my blog.

    Mike, — a fan of your blog, but one who gives you “one star” for your workbench tool tray. ; )

  5. billlattpa says:

    I’ll be honest, I have no idea who the typical reader of this blog. I don’t always look at the stats, because much of the time I moderate this blog from my phone, and for whatever reason the stats take forever to upload. But I generally average around 80-90 visitors per day, with somewhere around 150 views, and according to the stat sheet I have 542 followers, though 131 of those are from social media. At that, I have no idea how accurate the stats actually are.

    As far as the one star votes are concerned, that honestly doesn’t bother me, but I am curious to know what would make a person leave a one star vote. Like you said, I believe that a person leaving a one star vote is in most cases disagreeing with my opinion, and maybe not necessarily implying that the post was poorly written. Now, I am not saying that I am Ernest Hemingway and that everything I write is gold. But if that “one star” is indicating a poor job of writing, syntax, etc. I would like to be made aware of it.

    Like I said in the post, I have no problem with a critical comment. If I receive a critical comment I will answer it just like I do the others, and if I feel the person has a valid point I will acknowledge it. I feel the voting tab should work in conjunction with the comment section. Yet, everybody is entitled to his or her opinion, and I am willing to listen to those opinions, which is something I know that certain other woodworking blogs cannot claim.

    As far as the tool tray is concerned, if I make another workbench it will not have one…..not that I don’t like the tray I have now, but for the design I’m considering I really can’t work one in the way I would like. 🙂


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June 2014
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