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High tech viewers vs. troll reviewers: Who will win?

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<em>Coffee</em> Tins Locally, we refer to people who review books without reading them as noviewers. Mostly, they want to encourage others to follow their example and not read the book either.

The usual low-tech technique for spotting noviewers in the review stream is that they engage with the text only via canned talking points at best. They show little interest in the ideas as such. But how to prove that?

From Dave Lee at BBC we learn,

So imagine my delight today when, via the excellent Nieman Lab, I read about Norwegian broadcaster NRK.

The tech section of its site, NRKBeta, is trying a simple experiment. You can’t leave a comment unless you’ve read the story. How will they know? There’s a test!

“If you spend 15 seconds on it, those are maybe 15 seconds that take the edge off the rant mode when people are commenting,” suggested the site’s editor, Marius Arneson, in Nieman Lab’s interview.

It’s only being trialled on a small number of stories at the moment – typically tech stories that have broken out into the main news agenda. The quizzes are written by the reporters, and the questions aren’t too taxing, just enough to show you’ve at least glanced at the text before rushing to the bottom. More.

The rush to the bottom will likely continue, we suspect, because some people read in order to rant – and that’s their right. But it’s the authors’ and other commenters’ right to know if that’s all they’re doing. For sure.

See also: What do we call people who refuse to read books the are attacking

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