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Author Topic: The Perfectionist Option Back to Topics
AmynHH

Champion Author
Houston

Posts:1,932
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Joined:May 2012
Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 12:46:27 PM

To be able to get the perfectionist award you have to report all gas prices, but the problem is that some gas stations do not have Diesel. When you report prices for all 3 fuel types besides Diesel because the Gas station does not carry gas - You do not get credit for that report?

I think it is not right, because I have reported everything the gas station carries.
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Sneakers55
Champion Author Houston

Posts:58,665
Points:2,429,045
Joined:Nov 2005
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 10:49:55 PM

On Feb 13, 2013 11:46:27 AM, AmynHH wrote:

>To be able to get the perfectionist award you have to report all gas prices,
>but the problem is that some gas stations do not have Diesel.

It's called a perfectionist award. If you give credit for gas stations that don't have Diesel, it's just rampant grade inflation.

Anyway, I got the perfectionist award the way you're supposed to: not posting Diesel prices at stations that don't have Diesel fuel and not making up prices. There was some clueless rookie who made up a Diesel price that doesn't have Diesel fuel. I said, "If that station has Diesel fuel, the pump must be in the ladies' room." Probably the clueless rookie didn't get the humor in the first place.
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scottyboy
Rookie Author Grand Rapids

Posts:38
Points:69,455
Joined:Nov 2003
Message Posted: Mar 4, 2013 9:52:42 PM

is so true
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SUVFan
Champion Author Columbus

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Joined:Oct 2008
Message Posted: Mar 4, 2013 4:26:48 PM

>Either accept that, or complain that "It''s not my fault that Costco doesn't sell mid-grade and premium"<

Especially when it comes to "some" users of the mobile app (and it takes only one out of thousands), there's a third option: Post a fictitious price, which is much easier (and for those doing this while driving -- and you know some are -- much safer) than using a mobile device to find the "contact us" button and then type out a complaint.

RichLWIN's summary of why mere knowledge of the problem via this or any other thread will not change things is spot on.

Or at least it was spot on until the recent sale of the GB site, as reported in a recent TBTU thread. This morning, PD posted in that thread that one benefit of the transaction is that there may finally be some money to fix some of the problems we have pointed out over the years.

Given that mobile app users have an incentive to cheat on awards, restricting the ability to post grades that a station does not offer seems like a high priority item for some of the funds that may be made available by the new owners.
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
Points:3,586,470
Joined:Mar 2003
Message Posted: Feb 19, 2013 7:23:44 AM

I'm confused. What is the problem?
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Gas_Buddy
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Feb 17, 2013 12:28:38 PM

AmynH wrote:

"...now someone knows that this is a problem and they will do something about it."

I'm not so sure that this is a problem.
The idea is simple; simply find X number of gas stations that sell all four blends of fuel that meets the "award" criteria. Either accept that, or complain that "It''s not my fault that Costco doesn't sell mid-grade and premium". As more than 50 percent of the gas stations sell diesel, and many gas stations have converted to blending dispensers (in order to combine regular and premium into mid-grade, thus freeing their "mid-grade tank" to store and sell diesel), you simply have to make a very small effort to reach perfection.

If you really want perfection, trying posting five gas prices a day, read five news articles, and make five message posts, as well as vote in the weekly poll. in addition to Gas Buddy referrals. That seems more of a perfection than worrying about stations that don't sell diesel, thus not allowing you to reach "perfectionist".

In my opinion.
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
Points:3,586,470
Joined:Mar 2003
Message Posted: Feb 17, 2013 11:13:12 AM

"some stations do not have a mid grade"

Then don't post a price for stations that don't have mid grade.
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giwan
Champion Author Michigan

Posts:1,335
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Message Posted: Feb 17, 2013 10:34:28 AM

some stations do not have a mid grade
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RichWLIN
Champion Author Indiana

Posts:6,196
Points:971,455
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Message Posted: Feb 16, 2013 10:51:59 AM

AmynHH said: "...now someone knows that this is a problem and they will do something about it."

We all sure wish this was true. If you read back through the archived topics here, you'll find that this malady in the app awards was revealed and discussed at some length when the awards were first introduced many moons ago. The discussion that ensued still exists here and didn't make it to "file thirteen", but it sure got the same attention as if it did.

This, and other controversial issues with the app, have never been addressed by the powers that be. It doesn't seem likely that they ever will now that we know how the app programmer has since devoted design effort in creating a new type of award (top spotter champ) that essentially promotes maximizing reports of fuel prices just like the Perfectionist award.

Unfortunately, the new feature is probably resulting in members reporting fuel grades that aren't sold or that they didn't see and confirm at stations as they drive by. Seems that "more is better" is the mantra here much to the chagrin of honest members looking for particular fuel grades and the best prices.

RG
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AmynHH
Champion Author Houston

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Message Posted: Feb 16, 2013 10:25:45 AM

I appreciate all the comments, now someone knows that this is a problem and they will do something about it.
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
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Message Posted: Feb 16, 2013 8:55:32 AM

The station name and address information ties to the price posts. Nothing else does. Everything else is a piece of information about the station. as kwzh posted, the moderators have been telling us they are working on linking the grades checked in the MSL to the station posting. I'm hoping the reason they are taking so long is so all the bugs are worked out before it goes live.
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kwzh
Champion Author San Jose

Posts:22,309
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Message Posted: Feb 16, 2013 4:25:41 AM

The site maintains long-term information about the stations themselves; this is stored in the MSL, which any senior member can edit.

The site also maintains short-term information about the prices at those stations. This info -- roughly, a (station-id fuel-type price) tuple -- is displayed on the price page, and subject to being superseded by any newly posted info. At one time it was possible to post this even if the station was not in the MSL at all; I haven't checked to see whether this is still the case or not.

A much-requested feature, whose status seems to be "we're working on it", is to disallow price entries when the (station-id fuel-type) info disagrees with what the MSL says is possible.
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 11:05:59 PM

You'll have to explain that one a little more. I can see how it's updating a particular database, but it's clearly not directly updating the database used to give end users data on stations' fuels, grades, and services/amenities.

If it was updating that one (within a reasonable amount of time), I'd be getting the proper information when I queried the system.
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 10:48:25 PM

Actually, Loonieburger, updating the MSL is updating the database. The problem is not everything on the MSL is tied to posting prices.
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 10:16:06 PM

I think you're going to have to re-read what I posted, Scrapheap. Many of us have been updating the MSL to no avail. I assumed that scoutmaster meant that making changes to the MSL was what would bring about change. I misunderstood. Updating the MSL is not actually updating their database, thus not altering what information users are able to view online.

My last post was recognizing that the GB organization has a large cleanup operation to do, if posters' comments are any indication, and that it won't be easy. I'd prefer to give them the benefit of the doubt, and I have. That said, we can all recognise the problem and some are suggesting areas for improvement. I'm hoping that this section was designed for this purpose, and not simply a file 13 option created ostensibly to allow people to vent and show they care about our concerns.

Again, benefit of the doubt.

My suggestion was one where they wouldn't have to expend any capital, organizational, or pseudo-capital (points) resources. They could take advantage of the small army of posters who simply want to have accurate pricing available to all. Volunteers do things because they care - not for money or points.

So if they are monitoring the fora - and this forum, category, and topic in particular - then it behooves them to solve the problem, suggest an alternate solution, or respond when they can to explain what the holdup is. They undoubtedly know things we don't about their database, their past experiences with updates, etc. I can't speak for them; I'm completely guessing, but I can sleep well knowing I've spoken my mind and offered a reasonable solution.

Anyone got any others? I'd like to hear them. Why not help refine this idea a bit?
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Scrapheap
Champion Author Virginia

Posts:16,284
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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 7:23:39 PM

Loonieburger wrote > I can understand mods not wanting to allow just anyone to change stations' information, but I think they really ought to grant that ability to certain members who've been active and honest for a certain period of time.

Anyone with more than 10K points can edit the MSL. It was built and is primarily maintained by us.

The problem is there is no linkage between the grades of fuel checked in the MSL and either what can be reported or what can be seen primarily by users of the website.

GasBuddy doesn't seem to care very much about blatantly false data being displayed to users of the website. They are primarily interested in increasing revenue from the app.
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 7:04:18 PM

Well, scratch that. It seems like no changes have been made, and in many cases only the correct grades/fuel types are listed in the MSL. If I had to guess, when the stations were originally listed by the first poster, they included incorrect information - and all the updates in the world aren't going to change anything.

I can understand mods not wanting to allow just anyone to change stations' information, but I think they really ought to grant that ability to certain members who've been active and honest for a certain period of time.

I'll still go through the MSL every time I find a station with incorrect information, but it's up to the mods to decide when they're going to get around to it. This isn't a knock against them; I'm sure they have many other things to do and this represents a fairly daunting task, still I'd like to know if, when, and how they intend to address it fairly soon.

I'd volunteer to update the stations, after reviewing them in my area, if submissions were passed along to me, for instance.

Just my $0.02.
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MiataPrincess
Champion Author Des Moines

Posts:1,012
Points:188,175
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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 3:49:29 PM

It is pathetic how many times I have pulled into a station looked at the pump to find someone posted a price for something not sold at that station
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Byte_Doctor
Champion Author Akron

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Points:1,050,415
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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 7:05:53 AM

Likewise, the current version of the iPhone app allows posting of prices for grades not marked for sale in the MSL.
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RichWLIN
Champion Author Indiana

Posts:6,196
Points:971,455
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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 6:48:01 AM

kwzh said: "they've been intending to disallow price posting for grades not actually sold by the station, but this is the first hint I've had that anything of the sort has been implemented. It sounds like it might currently be true of the app but not the main site. Can someone else confirm this?"

No, this isn't confirmed on the app just yet. I have Android version 2.21 and you can still input midgrade or diesel at Sam's and diesel at all of the other stations that don't sell it. Seems like a misunderstanding.

RG
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
Points:3,586,470
Joined:Mar 2003
Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 5:13:01 AM

I just posted a diesel price from my Android for the Sunoco in Dormont and it took. This station doesn't sell diesel. I will delete it from the full site. So what Loonieburger posted doesn't work in my area.
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kwzh
Champion Author San Jose

Posts:22,309
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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2013 3:49:54 AM

Loonieburger writes,
> As for posting prices not checked off on the MSL, I don't have that option up here, it would seem. If diesel isn't listed, I only have three (sometimes two) options

Now that's interesting. The mods have said for some time that they've been intending to disallow price posting for grades not actually sold by the station, but this is the first hint I've had that anything of the sort has been implemented. It sounds like it might currently be true of the app but not the main site. Can someone else confirm this?

Oh, also, what method are you using to enter prices? There are four ways that I know of on the main site, and I expect at least two on the app (list view and map view). And what type of device are you using, exactly?
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

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Points:456,635
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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 5:51:18 PM

Scoutmaster,

Now that was helpful! I had seen most of everything on here since I started coming to the site about 17 days ago now. Prior to that, I had just installed the app while out on the road. The points I now have are almost all accumulated since then (had no idea about posting, reading stories, etc.) so that explains the 1/4 of my potential.

What I had never seen was the ability to edit stations' details. I will now spend the next month or so fixing every single incorrect listing in my area. While this is indeed a very good thing, it would be orders of magnitude easier if one was able to edit using the app, instead of making notes and transferring to the desktop once at home. People would be more inclined to make changes whilst at the pump, IMO.

As for posting prices not checked off on the MSL, I don't have that option up here, it would seem. If diesel isn't listed, I only have three (sometimes two) options. That's why I didn't understand your comment. That's truly bizarre that you always have all options, even when the MSL is up to date. Almost begs the question of what the purpose of the MSL is, no?

Anyway, I will update a few and see if the changes happen on my device. If they do, I will continue.

Thanks again,

L
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 4:23:47 PM

OK Loonieburger. Let me explain.

If a station only has one price on it's sign that is visible from the road, that is the only price that should be posted, UNLESS, the person posting the price actually drove to the pumps and saw all the prices.

Why don't I think editing a stations info will prevent people from posting prices for grades a station doesn't sell? Because it happens daily in my area. Sam's Club and Costco do not sell mid-grade. Theses grades are not checked off on the MSL. Yet people post mid-grade prices for them. There is a GetGo that doesn't sell diesel and it is not checked off in the MSL yet one particular member continues to post a diesel price. Every time I see these, I delete them and notify the moderators.

The MSL - Master Station List - which is only available from the full site, is the database of stations. That is where each and every stations addresses, features, grades, etc. is located and that is where they can be changed.

You should really spend some time looking around the full site, Loonieburger. There is a lot here and since you are relatively new and have only earned about 1/4 of the points you could have possibly earned, it would be very beneficial.
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

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Points:456,635
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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 2:53:28 PM

Scoutmaster,

Obviously we disagree on the purpose of the awards then, but you've not backed up your claim of 'no purpose' with any evidence, nor have you disproved my claim of their purpose. Therefore, "I don't understand what purpose they serve" or "they do nothing for me" would be a more appropriate response.

In their current format, they may be encouraging those who are already inclined to cheat, to cheat more. That much is true and I addressed that in my last post.

I'm not sure what you mean about "posting prices that are not visible on the stations sign" though. Nor do I understand why you don't think editing a station's information would prevent people from posting prices for corresponding grades that a station doesn't sell. Where do you think they would post the (fake) diesel prices if there was no diesel field to enter them?

I understand that this is an app; do you know of a place on the full site where you can edit a station's particulars?

No, I did not get a thesaurus for Christmas, but then I also never asked for one nor did anyone think I was in need, apparently.

Like the Pens avatar, BTW.

L
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
Points:3,586,470
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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 2:22:39 PM

Loonieburger,

What I meant was there is no purpose to the awards in any way, shape or form. They encourage posting prices for grades a station doesn't carry. They encourage posting prices that are not visible on the stations sign.

Allowing the editing of station on the app would not stop people from posting grades that a station doesn't sell.

Remember, this is an app, not the full site. Apps do not function the same as a full site. You can always fire up a browser on your phone and get to the full site.

Did you get a Thesaurus for Christmas?
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

Posts:3,809
Points:456,635
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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 12:44:07 PM

Scoutmaster,

Did you mean to say that there are no points awarded for the awards? You'd be right then. But to infer there's no purpose for the awards is wrong.

The awards are designed to get people to post current prices at all hours of the day and night. Pure and simple. All one needs to do is sift through the fora to understand how important incentive is to many posters. Not everyone is completely altruistic, including those who claim to not care about the awards publicly - admittedly some are very forthright and admit to not posting more than five prices per day, after their points are maxed - you've got to appreciate the honesty of some on here!

As for the other naysayers on here (who believe what they see based strictly on observation or culling through statistically insignificant data, rather than experimentation or first-hand knowledge), why not simply state your disregard, or disdain, for the awards and let others talk about them uninterrupted by the same old bleeting from the same old people, since: they do exist; they do serve a purpose; and they do not work reliably.

Those who are going to abuse the GB system are going to do it with or without the app awards. So enough with the feigned outrage from posters with millions of points or those with very few points after several years, who are senselessly proud of their low point totals and parade it as though it's something to be admired. To them I say, in order: 'Close your accounts and give up your points. Lead by example and demonstrate just how corrupting these points are to the integrity of the overall system. You can always choose the same handle for your new account so you don't lose track of all your online friends - just add a '2' to the end.' and 'Start practising what you preach and start posting prices regularly, if you truly care about current pricing. Take the time you're wasting on the fora and post prices, for surely this too is a waste of your time and not what GB was intended for.'

Either way, I don't need lessons from either of these two camps and GB in general would be better served by them keeping their arrogant condescension to themselves.

Now, what's wrong with the rest of the app? Not tons, but as I posted earlier the inability to edit, or even petition to update, a given station's attributes is extremely annoying. Fixing this would eliminate the issues of fake diesel price posting, people not getting their 'perfection' 'points', and the insatiable Pavlovian behaviour of certain members to put their noses in others' business and bloviate - that others might see just how large their e-genitals are.

Drive safe,

L
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
Points:3,586,470
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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 11:20:13 AM

Loonieburger,

Other than the awards, which are pointless, what is wrong with the Android app?
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RichWLIN
Champion Author Indiana

Posts:6,196
Points:971,455
Joined:Jun 2011
Message Posted: Feb 14, 2013 6:50:34 AM

Yes, sad but true, the Perfectionist Award encourages members to post diesel prices where they ain't. It has done so from the onset.

Cheating to win (advance the personal award level) can't be too satisfying unless cheating at a game of solitaire is considered fun.
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Scrapheap
Champion Author Virginia

Posts:16,284
Points:2,690,325
Joined:Sep 2006
Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 8:06:47 PM

Gas_Buddy - Since people make up prices of fuel stations don't carry just to get credit for this silly award, I disagree with you. Either this should be fixed so that it reflects reporting all grades of fuel a particular station sells or better yet, the awards should be abolished.
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Loonieburger
Champion Author Vancouver

Posts:3,809
Points:456,635
Joined:Oct 2012
Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 8:03:42 PM

Know exactly what you mean, AmynHH. I posted a longer list of things wrong with the App (at least for the Android) and don't expect to hear back, sadly. I would hope that they monitor this section from time to time and that our legitimate criticisms and suggestions (properly placed here) are taken into consideration.

I would like to see an option where perhaps a regular contributor with at least a year's worth of posting prices (just one thought) could submit a change request. Then, instead of the inane "does this station sell unleaded gas?" question, perhaps for a month or so the question of all posters could be "does this station sell diesel?"

Oh, and don't be discouraged by those who don't understand what you're getting at. gasbuddy.com created the app; they created the awards; they did it to encourage current price posting at all hours of the day - it's just not perfect yet.
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Gas_Buddy
Champion Author Maryland

Posts:28,528
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Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 7:51:26 PM

Seems like, AmynHH, that if you're reporting everything the gas station carries, and it doesn't carry diesel, then you'll have to find other gas stations to report prices for.

Think of it this way, just as you're always posting gas prices (for the benefit of your fellow Houston Gas Buddy members), you'll just have to find other gas stations to post prices for in order to post prices for grades or categories of fuel that are required to achieve perfection. As an award, that is.

Sorry, but just because one or more stations don't carry what you're looking for in order to achieve the "award" (an award that no one but you knows you've achieved), oesn't mean "it is not right" any more than it's not right that you have to post prices for all U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and the Canadian provinces in order to achieve a different award, just because you don't have plans to travel to all those locations.

That's what makes it perfection; it's not the most simple thing to do.
After all, would you really want the let people you earned the perfectionist "award" if it was so easy that any and everyone could get it with no effort?

Bottom line? keep on posting gas prices and you'll earn the award...if it's that important to you.
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TxJeans
Champion Author Tampa

Posts:6,117
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Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 7:38:48 PM

Yawn...

The site is about providing good price info to all buddies, not about games.
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:91,085
Points:3,586,470
Joined:Mar 2003
Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 2:27:29 PM

App Awards.
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CelticHeart
Champion Author Detroit

Posts:141,021
Points:3,498,400
Joined:Aug 2004
Message Posted: Feb 13, 2013 2:13:19 PM

No idea what you are talking about.
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