Ratings Everywhere

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Because I have several zoos in my Facebook feed, I found out that today is International Flamingo Day! Turns out there is also a National Pink Flamingo Day on June 23rd. How confusing for flamingos living here. Do they celebrate both?

In reading further, the national day celebrates the guy who created the first plastic pink flamingo and I’m not really sure that merits a day. But some mayor in some city declared it so and there you go. I guess this day is for the actual birds. Wonder how many other animals have International Days? Do the ones who don’t feel left out?

Flamingos were one of the animals I liked from the very start. Not sure why. Maybe just being the only really large pink bird made them unique. Guess it is good they have a day.

Now, on to what why I originally decided to post something today. Got an email from a company we used for a particular service and they were shopping for 5-star reviews. Actually made an offer that the first x number of people who left a 5-star review would get a discount on next year’s service.

I didn’t bite. I’m not unhappy with their service. I also haven’t used anyone else for this particular thing so I don’t have a frame of reference. They haven’t done anything to really tick me off so I’ve stuck with them. Is that 5-star? I guess it could be.

But it also felt wrong to give a rating when you get something in return. Now it makes me wonder how accurate any of these ratings really are because I’m sure other companies are doing similar things. I guess it could just considered an incentive to post a review for people like me who typically don’t think about doing it. Just think it should be organic.

I do get a lot of surveys. We get our water softener salt delivered and, after every delivery, I get a text asking for a rating on how the guy did. Since most of those guys are polite and they save me from having to carry multiple 50 pound bags down to the softener, I always give the highest mark. Plus, I’m sure they use those rating somehow and I don’t want to bring anyone down.

Today, I got a email asking me to survey my doctor so I did that as well. Went to pick up a prescription and got a text asking for my feedback. Decided to skip that one. I mean what can I really say. I went in, they gave it to me, I paid and I left. Just a normal interaction so how do you rate that? I don’t want to give middle of the road reviews because I’m sure someone up in the corporate offices gets paid to look at dashboard reports on surveys like this and middle of the road ratings would drag the averages down. But it feels kind of silly giving high marks for what was just a normal interaction.

I guess part of the reason I like to fill out the surveys is that I suspect most people only do it when they have something to complain about. We like to tear down much more than we like to build up so I’ll fight that trend.

I just can’t be bought.

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