One of the common misunderstandings of a novice user and site owner is to confuse user ratings and comments. The comments are visible but ratings are partly hidden (the selected category is visible). People make assumptions of users’ ratings based on categories but it's not as accurate as one might think.
That is because all categories and their associated selectable rating tags are displayed for all forms of ratings.
Why would "Malware" be available for a rating above dark red | red?
Why is "Good site" available for anything less than green?
WOT allows a user to select any tag no matter how they rated.
Tags should be controlled in conjunction with ratings which would offer more validity to "how" the reputation was computed.
I remember this was discussed in the closed (non-public) WOT 2.0 beta thread.
There is no such thing as a "neutral rating" I never understood having a "neutral" rating category.
The positive category only has 1 tag; "Good site" which is already infered with the green reputation.
C'mon Staff reinstate the Useful | Informative | Entertaining as separate positive-group tags and maybe create a few more which define "why" a site might be "good"
The correlation between category and rating is not that straight-forward, e.g. rating for "other/opinion/religion" -categories can be anything from 0 to 100. This unfortunately causes misunderstandings. One way to avoid the misunderstanding is that sometimes our active members tell how they have rated the site on site review request.
Forum intervention does not tell "how a user rated"
It merely informs the domain owner what problems may exist and advice which may aid to increase trustworthiness.
From the above: why don't we show individual user’s rating near his comment. This would allow others to get an even better idea how the individual user truly felt about the site. We already show the category and the comment so why hide the rating in such case. We can think that the user has already made a decision to share his opinion with public when he/she posted the comment.
Ratings are weighted.
The weight fades away over time.
Comments have no "weight" - they exist forever unless the commentator edits or deletes them.
Here's an example:
There are comments from over 5 years ago, one by a user who has not deleted their account but who no longer uses WOT either.
Comments like these are confusing because people do not understand that the ratings made by the poster are no longer valid and have little if any influence with the reputation.
I proposed a method for handling this type of thing over a year ago and it was "shot down" by Staff.
Now I see Staff is concerned about these comments but displaying old innefective ratings is not going to solve anything.
I believe that increasing transparency like this would help us to decrease misunderstandings and some of the critique that we are facing. Maybe even help site owner to understand what is really going on.
What do you think about this? If we do this, should we show the exact rating or just dark red, red, yellow. right green, dark green?
Since users do not have the same rating reliability, and their ratings have different affect towards any overall reputation displaying the number or color would not be an accurate display, especially since ratings fade with time, would the number or color lose focus as it's weight is reduced? I don't think so. Ratings should be treated equally whether or not a rating tag(s) are selected and/or a comment offered - they should remain private