This isn’t really a feature request, so much as an “unrequest.” I have to say, I’m not fond of the 1-5 ratings. I think it makes sense in certain contexts, like if you’re rating a pattern. In that case, people who are considering making the pattern might want to know if people are satisfied with it before investing time, money, and effort into it. Sites like Ravelry make good use of ratings for that purpose for patterns, and for people’s personal projects only offer the ability to say that you “heart” something, not that you think it’s bad.
I don’t have any gripes about the way my projects have been rated, so this isn’t sour grapes. But I just feel like in a community in which so much is about sharing what you’ve created for others to see and getting feedback so you can improve and learn, a 1-5 scale doesn’t add much. Plus I feel like it gives people an opportunity to be anonymously negative or mean. Back when it used to just be comments, I rarely saw comments that weren’t encouraging or helpful. This is still the case— people are positive, or at least constructive. Why add the opportunity to cut someone else’s work down? And now, sometimes I see something which is perfectly nice (or maybe not that nice, but what does it matter?) that’s got a 1 rating. What is that good of that? (And sometimes I see things that I personally don’t like with a low rating, and still, I don’t see the point. If someone really feels that strongly that they want to give something a low rating, why not instead just put a comment that says, “You might want to try ironing the seam allowances open as you sew- you’ll find this makes for a much more professional finish”?)
The fact that people are using their skills, exercising their creativity, and just flat out MAKING things deserves praise, even if the outcome isn’t to everyone’s taste. The fact that the creator bothered to post it at all means that they take at least a tiny bit of pride in it. If someone doesn’t like something, and wouldn’t be willing to post a comment to that extent, why should they be allowed to indicate that they hate it anonymously? Voting “1” isn’t that different from just posting a comment that says “THIS SUCKS” and we all know that people wouldn’t do that! Rating doesn’t benefit the person who made it because it doesn’t suggest any way that they could improve their work, and it doesn’t benefit the casual viewer to see that a project has an average of 2 stars from 7 people. The ratings don’t even add that much if something is rated highly. I’m guessing that people click on things because of the picture, not the rating, and my guess is that most of the people who post creations would rather get a nice comment than a high rating from someone who looks at their stuff.
Anyway, sorry for the long rant. It’s not meant to be a criticism of BurdaStyle in any way. Obviously, I love the site and the community. I do think, however, that project ratings don’t add anything to the community, and getting rid of them might actually foster a more creative and nurturing community.