How to rate a website
There are two methods available for you to offer your testimony for a website.
- Rating window
- Left-click the WOT symbol on your browser toolbar for the small pop-up rating window
- Website scorecard
- Middle-click the WOT symbol on your browser toolbar to access the website scorecard
The rating window is the simple and quick way to offer your testimony for the site. The website scorecard shows much more detail about the website than the rating window and offers the ability to leave a comment, should you decide to do so.
Comments are not ratings and have no effect on the reputation of a website. They are merely an expressed opinion and are not a requirement when rating.
A further aspect of ratings and comments that should be considered:
Since ratings and comments are made by ordinary people from nearly every country in the world there are bound to be conflicting viewpoints, and certainly some of those viewpoints are likely to conflict with your own. It is probably worth remembering that the wide-ranging nature of the WOT community has to be considered in the context that people's ratings and comments will be influenced by their socio-cultural backgrounds. For instance, you could hardly expect a fundamentalist Christian to give good ratings and comments to web sites promoting other religions (and vice versa). Similarly, you should not expect a Fascist to give good ratings to Communist web sites. Part of this dilemma is that nobody other than the commentator knows from what socio-cultural background the ratings and comments are being informed. Your own perceptions of censorship are probably a reflection of your own socio-cultural influences, and probably differ from the perceptions of censorship displayed by those from other socio-cultural backgrounds. Whose perception is the right one? Of course, there are some substantial commonalities regarding Internet safety. Nobody from any background wants their computer to get infected by a virus, nor do they want to be financially ripped off, which is why many of the more experienced members of the WOT community tend to confine their ratings and comments to those issues. However, there is no way of stopping others from expressing political and socio-cultural views in their ratings and comments, and to do so would be a form of censorship.
A question that always appears on the Forums is, Do ratings ever expire?
To quote one of the developers, Sami
Your ratings aren't deleted unless you delete them manually. Although ratings aren't deleted, they do expire over time. The older your ratings are, the less reliable they are considered, until at some point they will have effectively expired. The rating won't be forgotten though and if you ever revisit the site you have rated, it will be refreshed and considered brand new again.
Rating from lists
You may find blacklists or blog/forum posts that mention large quantity of domains that have been identified as having malware or is involved in phishing. These lists change. Sometimes compromised sites are posted temporarily and once cleansed, they are removed. Your rating will remain if you rate from lists, it is your responsibility to remove your ratings and comment (if any) accordingly.
One example is the use of hpHosts database listings (trusted sources). Some domains that are listed are not malicious, but rather are documented as being an advertiser that potentially could track a user's browsing habit. Just because hpHosts lists them, does not mean you should rate the site until after you have had the chance to visit it, it could be an error on hpHosts (false positive). For more information, please read this hpHosts blog article.