Scott Porad: How We Filter 20,000 User Generated Submissions per Day


Scott Porad

Scott Porad is talking about how the "I Can Haz Cheeseburger" network of sites filters 20,000 user submissions a day.

  • Each site has an "upload" tab. Some have a LOL Builder tag that allows people to compose pictures and text.
  • There are about 500,000 submission per month, they publish about 1-2%.
  • The name of the game is "quality content" so how do you find the needle in the haystack?
  • There is a four step process
    1. Screening - every submission is screened by an employee. There is a system that shows how submission, who submitted, how it was submitted, etc. Screeners look for quality, appropriatness, germanity (no jumbo jets on the cat site), and usually no people. This gets 50% of the submissions because a lot of it is junk.
    2. User moderation - sites have a "vote" tab where users can rate new LOLz. This is the "what's funny" step. They have a five cheeseburger rating widget. What people think is funny changes over time.
    3. User screening - Every entry on the site has a link for things that are incorrect or offensive. Usually this catches inappropriately sourced content.
    4. Editorial curation - Things that make the home page have a final approval by the site editor. Some trends (like the Tiger Woods scandal) can dominate a site. Editorial control is about balanace.
  • Technology is used (beyond worrkflow) in only one place where pictures are deduped.
  • This is hard to outsource since there's cultural sensitivity that's important.

This is a nice look into the workings of these sites and the problems they face.