A lot of the less homely bunch (read: elitist) always tend to have an expectation that someone's average ratings should be at the middle, aka 5/10. That has always bothered me as I cannot understand how can someone make such a dumb claim.
Let us take the example of anime, The average rating of someone should be 5/10 only when they are watching series at random - no rec systems, just plain old random amongst all available animes. Of course this just does not work as people do not watch series at random, people pick series that they expect to like - aka series they would be more likely to vote 7+ / 10.
Normalizing those to average out as 5/10 has problems. Your votes now correspond to how you rank the series only amongst the series you have watched. The un-normalized ratings on the contrary represent how you would rank the series against the whole list of animes - something much more meaningful. Normalized votes would also have to re-evaled every time you watch a new show.
A better rating scheme for an out-of-10 ratings for anyone interested is,
I think the user average under such ratings tends to be between 7 and 8.
- 5 and below for when you didn't want to even watch it because you know how garbage it would turn out
- 6 when it just failed to live up to your expectations that you thought it would when you decided to watch/read it
- 7 for the average and forgettable
- 8 for the good-ish
- 9 for the super great ones
- 10 for the select few masterpiece
But here is the thing, such a voting method requires more distinct levels in the upper half of the rating system. A vote out of 5 like on NU puts the user average at between 3.5 and 4. So now you are left with,
There is also a small rant about people who treat rating systems as a binary system with only valid choices being 1 and 10 but let's just ignore those for this blog.
- 3 mapping to (5) and (6) - aka garbage and a bit disappointing
- 4 mapping to either [ (7) , (8) , and a subset of (9) ] - Anything average and above that is not masterpiece-tier.
- 5 mapping to remaining (9) and (10) - Aka great and masterpieces.
TL;DR - People do not understand that every thing you choose is an educated choice and a rating out-of-5 sucks more than rating out-of-10