Not a question - More Statistics - The Tuba TA scores.

Asked by Jim Walker, Carmichael, CA Wed Sep 19, 2007

Below is the link to the thread I posted when I created this UN-Scientific measurement.
(Tuba -Ta ) Thumbs up plus best answers divided by total answers.
The subject of spam, useless posting and blatant self promotion has been a recent topic The tuba-Ta score is also subject to manipulation. A persons friends, (or confederates, to use a conspiratorial term) can mark useful on answers that are not. That would dirve up the score. Also I have noticed a trend of more thumbs both up and down in the past few weeks. So recent posts get more thumbs than they did earlier in the summer, though not at the rate they did in May and June.…

I will add on below as this is not a question seeking an answer. Your comments are welcome. Be kind to each other. I am not disparaging frequent posters or early posters. I myself am both prolific and often give "first answer"

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


Steve Ostrom, Agent, Roseville, CA
Thu Sep 20, 2007
Jim I like your module. Nice work and thanks for your time to assemble all the numbers. Shooosh! Nice noting of thumbing patterns; do you have a thumb flow chart for downloading? :-)
The "thumb," in my perspective only, has been the root cause of many issues on this forum (for the TU and the TD) and caused much anger and/or resentment for deemed misuse or abuse. I am still believer in the thumbs to stay and I truly believe abuse for the positive is in the minority. If anything perhaps a mental guideline to good participation – always giving a good or well-thought answer whether it is short or long and/or requesting more information to make an educated response. There is always the risk of someone getting around the system. I have said it, "why did that person get a thumb," "why did(n’t) I get a thumb" OR "how did HE/SHE get a thumb … I said the exact same thing?" But then I walk away from the glowing screen and say, it doesn't matter or I shouldn't be here in a public forum. But note, that I am pro-policing, but also pro-email. Buyer and sellers are watching during the short or long time that real estate is applicable to their situation and I think it is imperative to maintain a certain level of professionalism for the greater good of this forum. Thanks for doing this Jim.
2 votes
Jim Walker, Agent, Carmichael, CA
Sun Nov 18, 2007
They did remove rankings for all but the top ten.

All of the ranking systems are flawed. - Even the Tuba system.

I created Tuba a subtle tweak to the fact that Most answers was terribly flawed to reward short, boring, automatic answers; Best Answers was flawed to reward the Trulia Pioneers who answered seeded questions from Trulia staff and each other; even Most liked answers was flawed due to popular people being rewarded over unpopular but equally well written responses.

So yes get rid of the ranking system. Including my invention.

This post will self destruct in five..... Doot doot ... doot doot .... (theme from Mission Impossible) doot doot doot
3 votes
Infinity Rea…, , Saratoga, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
I agree with you ruth, when i started it was easier to not get thumbs up and answer at will, but as i slowed down my posts and focused on quality my useful answers have gone up.

And i am very much real with a different idea of what a profile should be, i choose to brand the office first rather than me personally.
3 votes
Trulia Roger, Home Buyer, Alameda, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
Good to see the issue being discussed. Please note that if one individual was mentioned, it doesn't absolve everyone else from the responsibility to behave with courtesy and professionalism. I won't give any more details, so please don't ask... But I trust everyone's doing some soul searching, and making the Voices community even better in the process.
Thanks, everyone, for being such a great group!
3 votes
Christopher…, Agent, Hemet, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
Realtyexec and other Voices:
Yes, I was the catalyst yet, am not the only "offender" here for certain(Read: Offenders). When asked by the good folks at Truia, I was open with my response. Others here should also accept responsibility for their actions both current and past in order to advance the community and invite open discussion. I did not create an additional profile in order to attack anyone or in an attempt to drive away members, contributors or consumers nor, did I do so to discredit Trulia. I openly admit what I have done, accept responsibility for my actions and hope that in this, you will also accept my apology if I have offended you, or any others
3 votes
Infinity Rea…, , Saratoga, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
SO Christopher this was about you the whole time.

"Dear Top Voices,

First of all, I want to thank you for being such an active part of the
Trulia Voices community. We believe that Trulia Voices can be a
valuable resource for people who are interested in discussing real
estate matters, and it is to a big part thanks to you, the Voice of
our community.

As in every vibrant and passionate community (online and in real
life), it is likely that some members might (un)intentionally
disregard or misinterpret the community guidelines. I am proud to say
that throughout Trulia Voices life, we are only aware of one such

A few Trulia Voices members informed us that one individual created
multiple accounts, even though the community guidelines state that
each individual should have only one profile and engaged in some
suspicious and offensive activity. We investigated the incident in
detail to make sure that this indeed was the case and after careful
consideration we have removed the posts from secondary accounts and
are deactivating any fake profiles. We believe in giving people a
second chance, but if there are repeat offenders then the primary
profile will also be deactivated and the poster will be banned from
Trulia Voices.

I’d like to thank all of you for reaching out to us providing
information on this case. If you see any activity that violates the
community guidelines in the future, please press the ‘Flag this
profile’ link on the profile in question. We are monitoring the
of flags very closely, and it is a key tool to alert us of violations
of our guidelines.

We are committed to make Trulia Voices an environment where knowledge
can be shared and ideas can flourish. Our community guidelines will
continue to evolve as the community evolves and as we hear more from
you about your needs.

Have a great weekend!

CEO & Co-Founder,"

I had no idea
3 votes
Mr.P, , Arizona
Sat Nov 17, 2007

It is so sad that you made that decision, even worse that you blame others for your poor choices.
3 votes
Sylvia Barry,…, Agent, Marin, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
Thanks, both Jim and Christopher:

I followed up with Ruth's question last night with clarification because it was brought up. However, after seeing Jim's reply earlier today, I plan to write back, because I agree with Jim completely, the answers speak louder than numbers..

I appreciate your admitting the mistake made and coming clean, Christopher, and I respect that. However, I refrain from answering your accusation about people creating profiles to just run up the numbers, as I don’t have evidence that had happened; and it is not my job to find out and investigate.

That aside, after reading your comment (the last part), I do agree that the numbers (especially the recent numbers with details from Ruth) probably should not be posted below.

Either way, I was going to follow Jim’s comment with the following (and Christopher and others, please keep an open mind on this while reading) -

We have seen TU, TD, BA, Rankings, state related questions discussed many, many times; and we will continue to see them being brought up and discussed.

But the truth is if anybody devote the time, energy and give their best, thoughtful answers, they, too, will be recognized by the consumers and other PROs; and they too, will be receciving the TUs and BAs. .

I don't believe anybody come to Trulia to first look at their rankings. They start to read the answers and decide if the answers are appropriate, well-thought of and add value. I don't look at how many TUs or BAs a person have, what I look at are the contents of the answers.

I start to notice the ones who continue to give good answers, and I pay attention to their answers, and I also notice the ones that don't; They are far and few in between, which I tend to ignore (sorry, but that’s the fact) .

To be sure; as we have answered hundreds of questions, we have read even more answers and tons of questions which we choose not to answer and we learn to see through good vs. bad, or mediocrity ones.

A point in case – I, too, climb up the ladder very late in the game – not that I was looking for it, but I ended up getting a bit of, how do I say this, addicted, and spent much more time than I should on Trulia, and my answers become better as I learn more here and probably received more attention; which I truly believe.

Anybody can do the same with TUs and TDs and BAs. It just takes time and devotion.

3 votes
Jim Walker, Agent, Carmichael, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
I have learned from all the Voices listed below, including the ones whose Tuba scores are on the low side. .. If your score is high .. fine. If your score is low... don't feel bad, give thought to the question and your answer, your score will improve. .
I think we are here to demonstrate that real estate professionals have valuable knowledge to share with consumers and with each other,

The overwhelming majority of us here do very well at that.
3 votes
Sylvia Barry,…, Agent, Marin, CA
Wed Sep 19, 2007
To make the link easier to access, I am posting it below.…

Please read my part (which I think really deserves TU, so go and do it, Thanks! :-) ) - I think Best Answer should be weighted, and a gentle reminder from Trulia to customer for Best Answer and TUs after a while helps

To make this a great forum, we need to keep our standards up, positive reinforcement and also a fair system.

3 votes
J R, , New York, NY
Mon Nov 19, 2007
Your preference is respected, Jim, however I believe short and to the point supersedes 700 word answers. :)
I'm always confronted with "your answer must be more than 25 letters" when I post.
2 votes
Mr.P, , Arizona
Sun Nov 18, 2007
There has been a lot of talk lately that Trulias ranking system maybe corruptible.

Therefore, the sooner that system is removed, not replaced the better.

The quality of answer is the only thing that matters.

Trulia has plenty of participants, it no longer needs a ranking system.

Again the quality of answer will speak for it`s self
2 votes
Ruthless, , 60558
Sat Nov 17, 2007
P.S. I reserve the right to delete and edit the previous post. If you would like your name removed or added, please email me privately at: And hurry before Sylvia gets back on line. I have to make nice again before about 1 a.m. when I know she will be back.
2 votes
Sylvia Barry,…, Agent, Marin, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
Hi All:

I totally agree with Christopher here.

To me, personally, Iappreciate people who can come out and admit their mistakes and apologize for things they did wrong. I think it takes courage to do that and I hope I can do the same for all the mistakes i have made.

So, Christopher, I want to welcome you again into Trulia and let's let the past be passed and start from here (both sides, or multiple sides or whatever, whoever is related to the whole thing). With one condition though, you also have to drop what you have been saying from here on. Fair is fair.

I believe that's why Pete wrote what he wrote.


P.S. I have to go back to work again, too much time spent here. Hope there is no surprises (unless they are good ones) when I come back. Thanks!
2 votes
Sylvia Barry,…, Agent, Marin, CA
Fri Nov 16, 2007
The question, Ruth, is "did you weight the Best Answers?"

The purpose of the forum is to answer the posters question. I think Best Answer should be weighted. Trulia should send gentle reminder for posters to select best answer after a while.

2 votes
Jim Walker, Agent, Carmichael, CA
Wed Sep 19, 2007

This score tries to measure average quality of a posters answers, as judged by readers who chose to award thumbs and questioners who awarded best answers. Posters who answered more in the spring or in recent week tend to score higher because more thumbs up were awarded in general in those periods than in middle of summer. If I don't post your name below you can calculate your score ( or some one you care about) easily:

TU plus Best Answers divided by total answers = score.

I say it tries to measure, not that it acurately does so. Several posters rate much a higher in my opinion than their scores would indicate and some people surprise me with high scores that I would not have expected based on my opinion. I would especially warn a reader to consider the outliers on this Gaussian bell curve to be statistical anomalies. The scores are not in any particular order:

Steve and Heather 136 div 135 = 1.01

Ute Ferdig 277 div 306 = .90

Paul Slaybaugh 325 div 241 = 1.34

Jim Walker 305 div 219 = 1.39

Sylvia Barry 382 div 353 = 1.08

Deborah Madey 870 div 842 = 1.08

Pam Winterbauer 266 div 854 = .31

Patti Perreya 144 div 135 = 1.06

Bill Warren 134 div 70 = . 1.91

Ed Monaghan 186 div 186 = 1.02

The missing Patrick M 231 div 200 = 1.15

Paul Renton 47 div 106 = .44

Jeanette Lowry 557 div 521 = 1.07

Perry Henderson 32 div 46 = .69

Bridget K 318 div 315 = 1.01
2 votes
Ruthless, , 60558
Sun Nov 18, 2007
Remove the RANKINGS!!!

Do NOT remove the THUMBS.

I'm so sick of this. I'm removing my posts in a couple of minutes.
1 vote
J R, , New York, NY
Sun Nov 18, 2007
This discussion is ONE of the reasons I think the whole TU TD thing is silly.
1 vote
Sylvia Barry,…, Agent, Marin, CA
Sat Nov 17, 2007
I wasn’t going to reply to your post, Patrick, because like I said, let the past be past. But since you put it this way – “The credibility of Trulia Voice is at Stake’ and, in a separate email, especially because I am a Funding Member, I have an obligation to reply, so I will.

I accepted Christopher Walker’s (CW) apology publicly because that’s what I believe in. I like to give people a second chance, and this is nothing new to anybody.

However, I also asked him to drop whatever he have been saying from now on. Why? Because they are inflammatory and not true; and if he is truly sorry, he would have stopping saying things like that. He has not mentioned publicly (nor privately), but I am going to assume that he agreed.

On your question, my statement still holds true; and the statement means just what it said - I don’t have any evidence that had happened and it’s not my job to investigate, so I am not going to comment on that part of the statement.

Plain and simple. I, in no way, was implying that I agreed with CW’s statement, which just so happened that I believe is a false accusation.

I am sorry I gave you or anybody else the impression that I agreed with CW. That’s certainly not my intention.

If you read the rest of my post again, you will find out I went on and explained not only to CW but others who are in doubt (as I hear this time and time again), why I think some consistently receive more TUs than others – you get to know them and you tend to read them more. In real estate terms, sort of like if you know a good inspector, you tend to go back to them and refer them to others; but they built their reputation by consistently doing good jobs.

I don’t know who G and X are (some guy according to G and X), but I thought G (or X) is a very sharp person, can give good answers, but very sarcastic and probably had something against realtors. I thought it was quite unfortunate, because he could have contributed more if he’d just share his knowledge like he once in a moon did. Then X (or G)’s wife showed up, reprehended him (at least she claimed) and they all disappeared. That’s all I know about G and X and Mrs. G and X.

The two best answers? As you are trying to make a point, I see one is from Bill and I assume the other is from CW (which you did not include). No, I don’t’ know CW nor do I know Bill. They are both introduced to me by the recent events on Trulia. You have to ask them why they gave me BAs.

I hope I addressed all your concerns.

1 vote
Carrie Crowe…, Agent, Southaven, MS
Thu Sep 20, 2007
Jim, Great stats! I think that people can up their own score by using another email account to give themselves thumbs up! It can be too easily manipulated. I do however love your stats and your way of thinking. Keep them coming. The best fit will show up soon!
1 vote
Patti Pereyra, , Chicago, IL
Wed Sep 19, 2007
Wow. You were totally the person whose test I must have copied my math answers off of in school! You missed your calling as a brilliant statistician or mad mathematician. Love it!
1 vote
Bridgette Ko…, , Florida
Wed Sep 19, 2007
I love your viewpoint and the stats are pretty good... But as you acknowledged, stats can be manipulated... I don't wish to cause any further turmoil, but the person with the highest score seems to be the least likely candidate for such...

The previous space was purposefully left blank for your (the reader's) interpretation...
1 vote
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