Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Cuusoo Etiquette: Don't be "That Guy"

Or "Gal" (I use "guy" genderlessly personally but people tend to correct me)

I have waffled about writing an article about this subject because it will probably make me sound like a bit of a snob but tonight I am, I guess feeling a bit on the snobby side.

If you post a project on Cuusoo and you have not supported any other projects, you look like an expletive.   I am going to go ahead and give you the benefit of the doubt and say you are not an expletive, but you are certainly swimming like an expletive and quacking like an expletive, so the community is going to go ahead and think you are an expletive.

To be sure, nobody will say this to your face, because, well, Cuusoo does not allow comments in which you refer to one as an expletive or, thinking you are an expletive, many won't waste their time on you or your project.

Now, I know this is a silly article to write, because I am going to assume that the kind of people who don't support projects on Cuusoo are the exact kind of people who don't read my blog, but to elaborate, these are the possible messages you are sending out to the Cuusoo community when you submit a project without supporting other projects:

  1. You don't care about anything/anyone else on Cuusoo
    This is not particularly bad, but it is certainly not the wisest foot to put forward when entering a new community.  People are less likely to help you learn the ropes when you seem apathetic to begin with. 

  2. You think you are better than everybody else
    One obvious implication of not supporting is that you think that, of the 5000 projects on Cuusoo, only your projects is worthy of production.  You expect people to flock to your "brilliant proposal" as the sole reason for Cuusoo to exist.  This is not a productive image to promote, even if you believe it.

  3. You have no idea what you are doing
    To be blunt, I would say the majority of people creating projects on Cuusoo have no idea what they are doing.  They post a halfhearted picture of a MOC and wait for the project to reach 10,000.  Serious project creators do their homework, present a great MOC with excellent pictures, and work on bring their audience to the project.

    If you have not supported a single project on Cuusoo the implication is that you have not reviewed other projects to see what makes them successful.  You have not reviewed what makes them unsuccessful.  You also don't have any idea what it is like to support a project.  You have never seen the support form!  So how can be begin to understand the supporter experience on Cuusoo?
  4. You see Cuusoo as a contest
    The first person to 10,000 WINS!!!  This is not the hunt for the Egg.  There is no gaming the system when you reach the end boss.  You get a project to 10,000 and it will "win" or "loose" on its own merits.  Cuusoo has stated this repeatedly.  They won't make a bad idea into a project just because it is the best one in the review and they won't give up on a really good idea they want to produce.  There are no rules they have to follow that they are not making for themselves.  Its not like Lego is saying...Wow, both of these projects will make us LOTS of money but we can only pick one! 

    I am not saying we will soon  see more than one project reach production in a single review, but we have seen three projects now get extended reviews.  If they were not tempted by the concepts they would just reject them like the others.

    Regardless the only way Cuusoo becomes a contest is if your idea is very similar to another that is approaching 10,000.  If you posted your project after the other one, one would wonder why you would post a project so similar to an existing one.  If they posted theirs after, then accept that campaigning is a part of Cuusoo and they were better at getting the message out.

    Ok, getting back on point.  If your idea has any merit to speak of, you want to support other projects.  Why?  Because you want people coming to Cuusoo.  If your idea is worthy of attention you want as many opportunities for people to see it as possible and them means site traffic.  If you can't get people to come to your project directly, get them to see all the other stuff and some of them will check out your stuff while visiting the site.  Projects get press at 1,000 support, 5,000 support , and especially 10,000.   Your lack of voting won't keep a project that is on track from reaching those goals but it will slow it down that means less traffic

In Conclusion

When you create projects (especially multiple project) in Cuusoo, without have supported any projects the community sees you as somewhere between one and all of the following:
  • Self centered
  • Pretentious
  • Unprepared
  • Obnoxious
You might actually be one or all of the above but I recommend you at least attempt to blend in a little.

If you just want to make sure people don't get the wrong idea about you (or even the right one), I would suggest you support at least 10 projects prior to the publication of your first project.

If you want my true recommendation I would say, really check out the 200 projects above 500 support and skim through all the project above 250 support. Support everything you like but really check out what you like about the projects that speak to you. Try to learn form these projects and integrate the compelling qualities into your own project. 

While doing so, reach out to these other creators and comment on their work even if it is just to tell them they have some impressive content.  Make a bit of a name for yourself in the community before your project comes out.  Now, don't tell someone their work is trash and you are going to destroy them with your "awesome work"  nobody likes that.  Just get the ball rolling.

Well, I am going to end it here.  I know it will be difficult for this article to reach the target audience but I felt it needed to be said.


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