Why?: Contest, Finalists, OAE, and... WHAT?
EDIT: This has turned out to be a really long post. Please see the top comment if you don't want to read everything, or if you aren't a scanner (seriously...). I did my best to stop my longforumtopicisitis disease...
I don't really know how to write this "topic". I know I'm not the only one that's a bit upset about it. I'll do my best to keep it short, but if you might get pretty confused if you don't read (almost) everything.
I would really like to hear your 100% HONEST opinion. I am looking for criticism. Don't worry if your response sounds harsh.
Instructables member OAE has posted several forum topics about contest winners in the past months. I understand the fact that he is annoyed some Instructables that win in contests aren't original, aren't documented very well, and lack pictures. It does bug me a bit when these types of Instructables win, but I guess that there's normally a reason for that, since most contests don't lack entries...
He also mentioned the fact that he was pretty annoyed about the fact that he doesn't win. I DO NOT want to insult him in any way, but even though his Instructables are fairly well documented, I wouldn't expect for one of his Instructables to be a finalist. Brooklyntonia wrote that "A paper airplane on a cutting mat doesn't scream click and vote.", and I agree.
However, I seem to have the same (I think) problem with my Instructables, and I think that it has just gotten a bit too much. I've won in 3 contest with 86 I'bles (think of that as 50, if you know what I mean...), which is why I feel a bit weird for "complaining".
It's not that I publish Instructables just for winning in contests. Far from that. SOOOOOOOO MANY times in the past year, I have posted an Instructable that I was absolutely positive that would win in a contest, but it wasn't even a runner up! I have SO MANY! It would take me an hour to post half of them, but here are some:
Articulating 70W Spectrum-Balanced LED Panel for the Lamps & Lighting Contest
How to Make a Wooden 6" Bench-Vise for the Wood Contest
The Flat-Pack Bandsaw for the Flat-Pack Contest (less than the others, though...)
How to Build a Wooden Drill-Press Vise for the Hand-tools Only Contest
9 Unusual Tool Storage Methods for Your Workshop for the Living without Closets Contest
Make Your Own Plywood Mallet! for the Plywood Contest
World's Most Over-Engineered 14-in-1 Soldering Station! for the Leftovers Contest
Please correct me if I'm wrong: These Instructable are featured, well documented, meet the contests requirements, contain well lit high quality photos, are original (90%, of course...). I "politely encourage" people to vote only in an Instructable that I think will win...
I would understand not winning at all once or twice, but not even being a runner up even once? WHAT am I doing SO HORRIBLY WRONG?
What discourages me even more is that even though I want to build something that I really need, I will wait for months until a contest opens, start making, spend a ton of time on the Instructable, and then I realise that I waited for so long, and my I'ble hasn't even won! Benne, however, even though we both publish somehow similar content, has mastered this somehow!
If I make something, I have to type up the Instructable immediately, because my short term memory is pretty bad. I wrote about this a bit here. If I calm the excitement down, I might be able not to publish it right away, but that will just discourage me, since I will feel that I haven't accomplished anything (aka positive feedback, etc...). Then after waiting several months, I will publish the I'ble and still not win?
Imagine your boss, at work, saying "Okay (your name), you've spent 10 hours working, but I'm going to pay you only next year. Oh, nevermind, we're having budget cuts. I'm not going to pay you at all" Wait, WHAT? WHY?
I'm making this sound as if it's a bet, which is okay since you don't get "paid" from Instructables, but never getting anything at all is annoying. Also, publishing Instructables is not extremely addicting (A REAL one... ;)
I think I am following the contest guidelines, but not winning again, and again... Why? Is there something that I don't know?
Thank you for reading!