New Rules / Publication Rules going live 24th July - let us have your feedback

1376
Posted 17th Jul
Hey guys - so for the past few months we've been working on some new rules which we'd like to put live on 24th July.

We know that the current rules have led to lots of uncertainty which has resulted in a fair amount of inconsistency in our decision making. We want to start afresh

>> You'll find the publication rules here <<

We need to get to a point where the first contact/communication we have with you provides enough information for you to understand why we've made that decision instead of you being sent a "catch all" message. For example, telling you specifically why we think a merchant unsuitable, instead of just telling you they can't be added at this time.

If you're still unsure or you have a question, the team will be on hand to provide further information and all you need to do is reply to the @hotukdeals_team message and someone will get back to you.

Every decision will be explained and we'll take whatever time is needed to make sure you're happy with our reasoning. Every action will be communicated (for example, when we move a thread from Deals to Discussions).

For the deal posters amongst us I think the biggest change is likely to be the need for deals to be market leading when they get shared on hotukdeals. Why such a change? We do not think we would be enabling our members to make the right purchasing decision if we allow a deal on site knowing it is cheaper elsewhere. This rule is to cover like for like products/services. Additional benefits (eg a John Lewis extended warranty) would be classed as a different deal when looking at the price etc.

Our community should be able to trust the content they see on hotukdeals and we do not think showing non market leading deals on our Hot page helps us with this mission.

We also hear your feedback that retention offers, targeted deals or local reduced to clear items should not be in the Deals section if the majority cannot benefit from these. So these will now be moved to Discussions.

We're also going to be moving megathreads/deal compilations to Discussions. We often see "heat for effort" type comments on these deals and we want to focus on hot deals! Heat should not solely be given for "effort" when the actual deal itself could be poor. When megathreads contain many products for different merchants a single vote isn't suitable for such content. For clarity, an "up to **% sale" at a single merchant with product examples is not a megathread under this rule and can stay in Deals.

I fully appreciate that some of these changes might take some time to adjust but we truly believe these changes are needed to improve our deal content quality and also how our community engages with the team, eachother and also our site.

What else have we been working on?

- Recently we've added a FAQ to site which provided answers to many of the questions you either ask in Feedback or the emails we receive. There is a discussion thread here if you wanted to provide your feedback.

- There will be a further announcement soon but we're looking to add a feature on site to filter Local deals so you do not have to see those which aren't in your area. This will be a user preference which you can set yourselves.

- Building trust and transparency on hotukdeals by providing you with the information you need to see about the site, Pepper and the team. More on that in due course.

What else are we considering?

- We are going to do some testing on the vote weight in order to give back the importance of voting. First of all we need to implement these new rules and see how we go. We'll cover this as a separate discussion to keep you looped in.



Your feedback is really important to us which is why we wanted to bring you this in advance of these rules going live.

These rules aren't fixed and we'll be reviewing them based on how we see things on site and your further feedback. Any changes to these rules will be communicated.

Thanks for reading and please let us have your thoughts
Community Updates
Misc
Top comments
FAQs

What about items which are RRP (like products launches)?
Items which are their normal selling price or RRP will be moved to Discussions under Rule 12. They can stay if there is an additional benefit (ie - MacBook Pro at RRP but you get £200 Giftcard when purchased).

How will you check if something is market leading?
Not all deals on hotukdeals will be able to have a comparison (due to conditions like refurbished etc) but when they do we'll use reputable price comparison sites. If we believe something is market leading (or the additional benefit justifies) we'll leave it on site. If another merchant beats it and we find out later it is not market leading the thread can remain on site but we'll do our best to ensure it receives less exposure (it won't be pushed to Highlights for example. Members can keep using the thread for discussion. We won't remove price matches from different merchants. We'll remove threads if within 5-10 minutes they aren't market leading but threads around an hour will remain.

Will you be proving information on minimum criteria for marketplace sellers?
Yep We're about to finalise the % and volume so once done this will be included in our communications with you.

What do you consider to be "Reduced to Clear" items?
These tend to be single offer "yellow sticker" items which are likely only available at one store and being sold to clear

What about items the same price but at a different retailer?
We wouldn't remove these as long as the price is still market leading.

What about code requests or threads where people are bound by the T&Cs of a 3rd party?
We'll allow codes to be requested in designated threads and no single code requests will be allowed. We'll make it clear in these threads that the end responsibility remains with whoever is offering the code. The same will go for threads where there is a question on whether members are breaching a 3rd party's terms (such as VPN accessible gaming deals).

Are you really going to remove all glitches or misprices?
Nope! We'll make a call based on what has been posted. In the past we've noticed patterns where something will get shared but we pull it because we suspect a hacked ebay account or the merchant is just data harvesting. In reality this will happen very rarely but we need to be able to have something we can rely on here when we ever make a decision to remove a thread.

What do you consider to be a megathread?
For the purpose of these rules we'll treat a thread with various deals from more than 1 seller as a megathread/deal compilation which we'll move to Discussions. Single seller threads with various products aren't considered a megathread and can remain in Deals.

What about Playstation Plus and Games With Gold etc?
These are fine to be shared in deals taking into account the benefits provided by the service and for how often they get shared/announced.

EDIT: From 27th July 2019 we will allow the following in Deals too (subject to trial):

Switch Online
Gamepass
Games with Gold
Playstation Plus
EA Access
Edited by: "magicjay1986" 27th Jul
eslick17/07/2019 22:21

@magicjay1986 not to pick on him but will the removal of the megathread …@magicjay1986 not to pick on him but will the removal of the megathread impact deals like @Mrswitch and their cheapest phone under a price. Sorry Switchy.


Its fine, you make a valid point, I put a lot of work into those, and have actually been encouraged to do them in the past, and now I'm being told to stop all the hard work I do for the site, I'd love to know why the decision has been made to stop them @magicjay1986 you are basically taking away an area of the site I love, and am now being encouraged to post every single one of these deals as a single deal, instead of all in one nice neat place! Hence I'll now get flack for spamming the site!

Basically what you've done is, listen to the people who don't like Megathreads as those people are the loudest, but there are also a shed load of people who come onto these deals and tell me it helped them make a decision to buy. Poor show actually!
Edited by: "MrSwitch" 18th Jul
Personally, I preferred the site when it was a Wild West free-for-all. Obviously I understand Pepper's reasoning, but whilst it no doubt increases revenue for you, it devalues it for buyers such as me. If I want to know the best price for a toaster, I can google it. What I want from a deal site is an alert that Tesco have mispriced them at 4p, or Amazon have a glitch whereby I can get a pallet full for a tenner.
I used to use the deals function, but IMHO there are better sites now. I used to use misc but, as you yourself say, there are better places for that. FS/FT? Gone too.
I used to log on multiple times a day - I'm probably here now once a fortnight.
Good luck with the changes, but I think that you'll alienate more existing users than you attract fresh.
.MUFC.17/07/2019 13:09

Can we have a new section where we can discuss Sky fairies and Politics?


I agree. An un-moderated section, titled 'enter at your own risk', would be great, where we can honestly say what's on our minds
Edited by: "deeky" 17th Jul
1376 Comments
@magicjay1986

One in each of the two stores; should the "Deal" below be in the "Misc" Forum?

"Sony Ps4 Pro And Spider-man Bundle - display model £219.95 @ Richer Sounds in store only Kingston & Leeds"

Currently at +259 degrees.


Update #1

Response (following a "Report" of the thread): "...We do allow local deals in the deals section as there is availability. Once sold out we can then expire"

This seems in contradiction to the "Reduced to Clear" category as stated in point 5 of the "Publication Rules"...

38603515-Ebpan.jpg

Update #2

Following my reply to the "Private Message" I received, the "Deal" thread has now been marked as 'Expired' ("Unfortunately, this deal is no longer valid").



Update #3

"...as it's a national chain with an online stock check we can allow in deals - similar to Argos, Wilko, Homebase etc."

I have suggested that the Publication Rules be changed to make that clear.
Edited by: "fanpages" 4th Oct
julieallen02/10/2019 18:33

This is what the mod team saidthis is currently not available to order.as …This is what the mod team saidthis is currently not available to order.as the reason it was removed, note removed, not moved to misc or anything. I wasn't asked for further information at that point, just told it had been removed.The argos deal wasn't available to order, ebay codes posted the day before aren't available to order, yet they are ok just because a mod posted them? Does my deal history suggest I make deals up? Also, you still haven't answered about the Virgin deal, are non market leading deals allowed now as long as they have been voted on as the mod suggested? Is quidco taken into account as the mod suggested when looking at if something is market leading?



Deals being voted on doesn't override the rules...maybe the team meant it was checked at the time, appeared to be market leading and time had passed so it was difficult to remove now (with newer information). I'm just guessing of course as I don't know the exact circumstances at the time.
fanpages04/10/2019 10:36

@magicjay1986 One in each of the two stores; should the "Deal" below be in …@magicjay1986 One in each of the two stores; should the "Deal" below be in the "Misc" Forum?"Sony Ps4 Pro And Spider-man Bundle - display model £219.95 @ Richer Sounds in store only Kingston & Leeds"Currently at +259 degrees.Update #1Response (following a "Report" of the thread): "...We do allow local deals in the deals section as there is availability. Once sold out we can then expire"This seems in contradiction to the "Reduced to Clear" category as stated in point 5 of the "Publication Rules"...[Image] Update #2Following my reply to the "Private Message" I received, the "Deal" thread has now been marked as 'Expired' ("Unfortunately, this deal is no longer valid").Update #3"...as it's a national chain with an online stock check we can allow in deals - similar to Argos, Wilko, Homebase etc."I have suggested that the Publication Rules be changed to make that clear.




Yep, certainly could be a bit clearer. Leave it with me but essentially we'd want that type of thread to be in Deals (and it'd be our job to stop confusion by making the stores known, keeping an eye for it to expire etc).
magicjay198604/10/2019 11:14

Yep, certainly could be a bit clearer. Leave it with me but essentially …Yep, certainly could be a bit clearer. Leave it with me but essentially we'd want that type of thread to be in Deals (and it'd be our job to stop confusion by making the stores known, keeping an eye for it to expire etc).



Thanks 'jay.
fanpages05/10/2019 17:37

Only 1 in stock...[ https://www.hotukdeals.com/comments/permalink/38610888 …Only 1 in stock...[ https://www.hotukdeals.com/comments/permalink/38610888 ]+111 degrees.


I asked Jay and he said those types of deals were allowed, I enjoy posting those deals as it's a fastest finger first, I always keep an eye on comments and stock levels to expire as soon as it goes out if stock
MrSwitch05/10/2019 17:39

I asked Jay and he said those types of deals were allowed, I enjoy posting …I asked Jay and he said those types of deals were allowed, I enjoy posting those deals as it's a fastest finger first, I always keep an eye on comments and stock levels to expire as soon as it goes out if stock



....is it still in stock?
MrSwitch05/10/2019 17:49

Yeah, at 17.48pm[Image]



5:48pm or 17:48.

OK. Not worthy of the +141 degrees of heat thought for a single item.
Edited by: "fanpages" 5th Oct
fanpages05/10/2019 17:55

5:48pm or 17:48.OK. Not worry of the +141 degrees of heat thought for a …5:48pm or 17:48.OK. Not worry of the +141 degrees of heat thought for a single item.


Its now 17.56pm and thanks
It has been said before, mainly by my wife. Maybe she's right!

@fanpages
fanpages05/10/2019 18:00

Comment deleted


I don't gain commission off anything!

I posted those types of deals before I got made an expert. I haven't changed what I do one bit.
Edited by: "MrSwitch" 5th Oct
fanpages05/10/2019 17:55

5:48pm or 17:48.OK. Not worthy of the +141 degrees of heat thought for a …5:48pm or 17:48.OK. Not worthy of the +141 degrees of heat thought for a single item.


But if it’s available I don’t see what the heat has to do with it. It must be a good deal to get so much heat

Once it’s gone the deal can be expired and won’t gain anymore heat.

Many of the best deals get snapped up and never make it to been hot.
Edited by: "myusernamehasgone234" 5th Oct
fanpages05/10/2019 18:02

Comment deleted


I haven't changed my style of posting, I'm paid for finding my own deals, from any site I like, and cex aren't an hukd affiliate.
@magicjay1986

"Reporting" the above thread resulted in the usual nonsense response of "We took care of it".

The (so-called) "Deal" is still active & there was only ever a single possible item available at this price.

(Sigh).
@magicjay1986 I believe we had a conversation in this very thread about single item deals being allowed to stand didn't we?
Edited by: "MrSwitch" 5th Oct
MrSwitch05/10/2019 18:03

I haven't changed my style of posting, I'm paid for finding my own deals, …I haven't changed my style of posting, I'm paid for finding my own deals, from any site I like, and cex aren't an hukd affiliate.



OK. Fair comment. Thank you.

When @magicjay1986 wades through the feedback about the "Expert" program(me) & decides whether (or not) to publish the details of the commission paid to the "Experts", this point will be made clear.

At present, all I see is that a single item has gained so much heat.

No disrespect meant to you; it's just the system.
Once again, for clarity...

38611976-vlR4P.jpg
A single item is, by anybody's definition, to be considered "minimal".
fanpages05/10/2019 18:10

Once again, for clarity...[Image] A single item is, by anybody's …Once again, for clarity...[Image] A single item is, by anybody's definition, to be considered "minimal".


Cex frequently have single items in stock, and as soon as the stock goes, the system updates to out of stock.

They have a good system in place, unlike some.

I posted a deal from clove last year whereby there were many disappointed users of this site as their system carried on taking orders, on a cheap smartphone, when they only had a handful in stock, the systems didn't update and a lot of people had cancellation emails.

I think that is what the above is meant to mean.

In regards to "commission" we aren't paid on commission, and are simply paid for finding deals, getting new users onto the site, and other factors we haven't been told about.

I genuinely like posting single deals as I like to see who ends up with the bargain, clearly the linked deal isn't that much of a bargain, as its still in stock
fanpages05/10/2019 18:10

Once again, for clarity...[Image] A single item is, by anybody's …Once again, for clarity...[Image] A single item is, by anybody's definition, to be considered "minimal".


I'd say it's quite a lot. Much more than no items

fanpages05/10/2019 17:37

Only 1 in stock...[ https://www.hotukdeals.com/comments/permalink/38610888 …Only 1 in stock...[ https://www.hotukdeals.com/comments/permalink/38610888 ]+111 degrees.


Doesn't really matter does it? As long as someone can make use of it then I don't see the issue, low quantity is not an issue as long as it is made clear.
fanpages05/10/2019 18:04

@magicjay1986 "Reporting" the above thread resulted in the usual nonsense …@magicjay1986 "Reporting" the above thread resulted in the usual nonsense response of "We took care of it".The (so-called) "Deal" is still active & there was only ever a single possible item available at this price.(Sigh).


While I don't agree with you in terms of the deal, I hate the 'we took care of it' message!

@magicjay1986 surely you want to increase site transparency, in which case a proper response instead of that blanket, generic one is much better?
jamie1505/10/2019 18:23

Doesn't really matter does it? As long as someone can make use of it then …Doesn't really matter does it? As long as someone can make use of it then I don't see the issue, low quantity is not an issue as long as it is made clear.



Indeed.

It wasn't made clear in the opening comment (thread description) though.

A (non-expert) member had to make this point.
fanpages05/10/2019 18:33

Indeed.It wasn't made clear in the opening comment (thread description) …Indeed.It wasn't made clear in the opening comment (thread description) though.A (non-expert) member had to make this point.


I'll update now, apologies.
MrSwitch05/10/2019 18:34

I'll update now, apologies.



Thanks.

Making the forum team aware of this thread only made them delete (relevent) comments, it seems.

I sincerely really have to question why I bother anymore.

This site seems to have a set of rules that only it only seems to follow when it wants to do so.
38612216-mqjsl.jpg
fanpages05/10/2019 18:41

Thanks.Making the forum team aware of this thread only made them delete …Thanks.Making the forum team aware of this thread only made them delete (relevent) comments, it seems.I sincerely really have to question why I bother anymore.This site seems to have a set of rules that only it only seems to follow when it wants to do so.


Thats pretty obvious, that and just making stuff up when they feel like it, to use as excuses.
magicjay198604/10/2019 11:13

Deals being voted on doesn't override the rules...maybe the team meant it …Deals being voted on doesn't override the rules...maybe the team meant it was checked at the time, appeared to be market leading and time had passed so it was difficult to remove now (with newer information). I'm just guessing of course as I don't know the exact circumstances at the time.



Thank you for reporting the following deal: "Virgin Media 100mbps Broadband + Phone - £25.75pm x 12 Months - Total Cost: £309 (£15.75 after Quidco cashback)" with a reason: "Not market leading, going through MSE works out at £18.75 a month after bill credit".

This is £15.75 after Quidco


Clearly the mod team seem to think Quidco is included in a deal price

My reply

And the MSE one is £8.75 including quidco, but as cashback isn't taken into account for a deal, not sure why its relevant?

Mod team

Hi, reviewing the current deal temperature is 361° so multiple members feel it's a good deal and we don't compare cashback offers from different providers as not all members have access to that particular scheme. If the MSE offer is exactly the same contract pre cashback (£monthly cost, contract term, broadband package speed & package, same provider) then the information can be added to the existing thread. I don't have the MSE link to review further.
Forum team


So if they didn't mean it was staying because of the temperature, what did they mean?
Rule 5 example has been updated to read:

"Listing error by a merchant known to cancel orders and not honour these. Instore reduced to clear products which are likely single store specific. Low stock items available to order online (including for store collection) will not be affected by this rule."

The same applies though that the team will be checking the thread has as much information as possible so that members stand the best chance of getting the item. Lets see how this goes and we can review it again and make changes if necessary.
magicjay198606/10/2019 08:41

Rule 5 example has been updated to read: "Listing error by a merchant …Rule 5 example has been updated to read: "Listing error by a merchant known to cancel orders and not honour these. Instore reduced to clear products which are likely single store specific. Low stock items available to order online (including for store collection) will not be affected by this rule."The same applies though that the team will be checking the thread has as much information as possible so that members stand the best chance of getting the item. Lets see how this goes and we can review it again and make changes if necessary.


So single item deals as in the example above (cex) are allowed, just for clarity and future deal posting?
MrSwitch06/10/2019 08:43

So single item deals as in the example above (cex) are allowed, just for …So single item deals as in the example above (cex) are allowed, just for clarity and future deal posting?



Yes. I don't think we should put a number on it hence the wording "low stock" but we should just make sure the thread is as clear as possible so members know exactly what to do (store collection from a specific store for example) to get the item.
magicjay198606/10/2019 08:45

Yes. I don't think we should put a number on it hence the wording "low …Yes. I don't think we should put a number on it hence the wording "low stock" but we should just make sure the thread is as clear as possible so members know exactly what to do (store collection from a specific store for example) to get the item.


OK, thanks Jay, appreciated.
MrSwitch06/10/2019 08:43

So single item deals as in the example above (cex) are allowed, just for …So single item deals as in the example above (cex) are allowed, just for clarity and future deal posting?



magicjay198606/10/2019 08:45

Yes. I don't think we should put a number on it hence the wording "low …Yes. I don't think we should put a number on it hence the wording "low stock" but we should just make sure the thread is as clear as possible so members know exactly what to do (store collection from a specific store for example) to get the item.



MrSwitch06/10/2019 08:47

OK, thanks Jay, appreciated.



Thanks 'jay.

For my clarity: Are on-topic/relevant comments still going to be deleted from this/other thread(s)?
fanpages06/10/2019 12:51

Thanks 'jay.For my clarity: Are on-topic/relevant comments still going to …Thanks 'jay.For my clarity: Are on-topic/relevant comments still going to be deleted from this/other thread(s)?



I wasn't about last night but reviewing these comments they were probably a bit unnecessary considering I had said this specific topic was already going to be reviewed.
magicjay198606/10/2019 14:03

I wasn't about last night but reviewing these comments they were probably …I wasn't about last night but reviewing these comments they were probably a bit unnecessary considering I had said this specific topic was already going to be reviewed.



Yet the replies from @MrSwitch remain responding to those unnecessary comments.

Either remove everything or don't remove anything.

Just be consistent, please.
No doubt Jay will ignore me as usual, but this is RRP, OP even states it will be cheaper on prime day, reported hours ago, no response at all from the mod team

hotukdeals.com/dea…772
Hi @magicjay1986 the best in market is getting a little dafter each day, always an excuse why items can stay not enough stores is the most common one or the its cheapest at time of posting. That might be the case but surely there should be away of getting users to see the best price available at the time, maybe expired because better price is available rather than the expired because deal no longer exists. Example below.

hotukdeals.com/dea…738

hotukdeals.com/dea…063
eslick14/10/2019 14:10

Hi @magicjay1986 the best in market is getting a little dafter each day, …Hi @magicjay1986 the best in market is getting a little dafter each day, always an excuse why items can stay not enough stores is the most common one or the its cheapest at time of posting. That might be the case but surely there should be away of getting users to see the best price available at the time, maybe expired because better price is available rather than the expired because deal no longer exists. Example below.https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/the-balvenie-double-wood-12-year-old-single-malt-scotch-whisky-70-cl-3495-prime-at-amazon-3308738https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/balvenie-12-year-old-at-sainsburys-locals-3309063#comment-38664687


They are different deals and should be allowed IMO. One is an online deal with free delivery and one is in store but cheaper.
Edited by: "jamie15" 14th Oct
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