Lost Gems of Yesteryear: An e2 vote Quest

We often have quests which aim to add new content to our web site. This is well and good, but we also have lots of great content already noded. Much of this content may never have been read by the current generation of e2 users. This humble quest aims to address that by returning a few old writeups to prominence.


Old writeups are like onions.

amnesiac: They stink?
Yes. No! OK, sometimes. But...
amnesiac: Oh, they make you cry.
Brawl: Sometimes, yes. But...
amnesiac: Oh, you dig 'em out of the nodegel, they start sproutin' little white hairs.
/borg amnesiac

Shrek references aside, some old writeups do make you cry, and they don't all stink. Admittedly there are a few questionable writeups from the old days that we wouldn't accept today. On the other hand there were many early gems by both current and long-fled writers. A number of long-time users have performed self-audits and upgraded their old content as well.

How do we find these writeups? Sometimes folks stumble across them and cool! them, but that's more miss than hit. A Year Ago Today offers a random window on the past, but it doesn't differentiate. Here, we will attempt to pan gems out of the rough of the nodegel so that they can be admired and mounted to all to enjoy.

amnesiac: Is this one of those onion things?
No, I've changed analogies. Try to keep up, sir! I want you to identify up to three old writeups that you enjoy/admire, and then find as many ways as you can to share them with today's e2 readership.

Quest rules and rewards

What's an e2 Quest without rules? Chaos! So let's establish a few guidelines. As mentioned, I'd like to see up to 3 writeups nominated by each Quest participant. These writeups should be by three different noders, with none by you, because I want to encourage you to find and nominate good work by others. You'll let me know by /msg or email what they are before you promote them, so that I can note their starting reputations. Once the Quest start date arrives, you can promote them as you see fit. Day logs, companion writeups, reviews of poetry or fiction, reading for the podcast, bestowing a strategic C!, posting to your home node, highway graffiti, judicious nodevertising ... whatever you can think of to raise the profile of your nominees. (If you're thinking of an ongoing fiction series, please don't promote it by extending it yourself unless the series' author(s) approve.)

I'll keep a list here of participating users and writeups. You can also elect to be a 'secret' participant, and go with unlisted writeups and/or be an "unknown noder" until the Quest ends. Once the Quest ends I will disclose any and all unlisted participants and writeups.

At the end of the Quest I will collect the revised reputation of all writeups, and then rank participants by the total aggregate change in reputation. Because I want to focus on older writeups, the ranking will be adjusted as follows:

  • Writeups posted on and since July 1 2007 are ineligible to be selected.
  • Writeups posted on and since July 1 2006 will score 33% of net reputation change, except as above.
  • Writeups posted on and since July 1 2004 will score 100% of net reputation change, except as above.
  • Writeups posted before July 1 2004 will score 150% of net reputation change.
I will give all participants an XP bonus based on the net reputation change of their selected writeups. Prizes may also be awarded for the top 3 participants. These prizes may include XP bonus, votes, home node image privileges, C!s, a handful of old Cheerios, or anything else I feel like at the time.


What if my chosen writeups get downvoted? Or deleted?
If the writeups you promote end up with a negative reputation change, then your final ranking will be negative. And you'll lose XP when I give out the completion bonuses! This is not a challenge to get the lowest Quest score. If any chosen writeups get deleted, then they won't count in the final ranking.
What if people use 'sock puppet' accounts to promote their own nodes?
That subverts the intention of the Quest. If I catch them, then I'll give them a very thorough node enema, which is like a node audit with extreme prejudice. However, if you just can't get your list down to three, and you want to use a secondary account to nominate three more, by all means do so.
If I find a great writeup partway through the Quest, can I add it?
If you have less than 3, sure. But you won't get "extra time" at the end.
What if someone else picks my favourite writeup?
First come, first served, unless the first user agrees to "share" in which case I'll split the net reputation gain or loss between the sharing parties.
This Quest unfairly favours the content of old noders.
A quest about promoting old content is going to have that tendency, yes. But even the newest user can look for great-but-overlooked content.
Oh yeah? Like, where?
Random Nodes. Look at Everything's Best Users for users with high merit, or look at the home nodes of those users and look at their bookmarks. Follow soft link chains. Revisit Page of Cool. And so on.
When does the Quest start and end?
The Quest starts officially at 00:00:01 E2T on August 1, 2007 and ends at 23:59:59 E2T September 3, 2007. These times may vary slightly as I'm not proficient enough with Perl to safely automate the data collection and will likely need to do some of it by hand.

That gives you over a week to identify your choice of writeups and to plan your promotional campaign.

Submitted gems

Recently recommended: pile of kittens by that girl, I suggest you dance. If you need a reason, I'm sorry. by Hatshepsut, and Touch the Puppy by theonomist.

One recommended writeup was removed by its author.

We have 80 writeups by 71 different noders (Roninspoon, deep thought, dem bones, IWhoSawTheFace, jessicapierce, junkpile, and Mr. Hotel appear twice; Lometa appears 3 times). Please read, enjoy, and upvote your favourites!

Writeups submitted:

Additional reading lists include Devon's in August 3, 2007 and Walter's in August 6, 2007.

Interim status reports are in the day logs for August 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 11th, 25th, and September 1st. Final results were posted on September 4th.

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