Top Provider Determination

How are the Top Rated Providers Determined?

Great question!  This site relies on 2 primary inputs to determine which Usenet and VPN providers are rated at the top:

First and foremost, we add new providers to the site with an Editor Review.  Editors either have direct experience with the service, or are evaluating the service in comparison to what already exists in the market.  For the most part, we solicit reviews from editors that have actually used or subscribed to the services.  Since our editors have been around Usenet and VPN services for quite some time – that’s fairly easy.  We also update the Editor Reviews on a regular basis.  Still, that is ONE person’s opinion on the service.  This is where YOU come in!

User Reviews are the second key to determining who makes the Top 5, and who is listed at the top of the review postings.  Your ratings and reviews are just as powerful and meaningful as the Editor’s!  The more user’s that rate the service with high marks, the better it will place on the page and in the Top 5 ranking.  In fact, as User Reviews grow for a particular service they can easily outweigh the Editor Review!

So how do we do this?  Math!  Ever heard of Bayesian statistics?  Probably not, and that’s OK.  Here is a Wiki page that can get you up to speed on Bayes Factors.  Still drowning?  Read on for a simplistic explanation.

Basically we are looking at the strength of the Editor’s review and ratings, the number of User review & ratings, and the currency of the reviews to determine the ranking.  Think of it like forecasting – we are using all the feedback we have to try and determine an accurate rating for NOW, based on the prior information obtained.  The higher an Editor review, the more highly rated User reviews, and/or the newer User reviews will drive a particular service to the top.  In this way we are trying to account for our Editor’s thoughts, your thoughts, and the currency of the ratings to determine which providers are best.

(stats and math majors, please feel free to write us a better explanation of how the math works, we tried!)