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Peer Review

This is a guide to help you understand what Peer review is, how to prepare for it, what to expect from it, and how to participate in it.

Note: this document will briefly explain the issues Content Creators have with Peer Review but not will not be fully delving into the politics of Peer Review. This is merely a Peer Review survival guide.

 

Abbreviations that will want to be familiar with that will be used in this document and in Peer Review discussions you may read.

PR, Peer Review: The process of pre-screening products before they go live in the IMVU catalog.

GA, General Audience: Content all IMVU users can view and use.

AP, Access Pass: Content only those over 18 and that have purchased an Access Pass can view and use.

UFI, Unfit for IMVU. Content IMVU has deemed inappropriate for the IMVU website and experience.

VGP, Virtual Goods Policy. The guidelines that define what content is and is not appropriate for IMVU.

MCG, Minimum Coverage Guide. The skin that shows what areas of the skin MUST be not be viewable for an item to be GA.

CC, Content Creator. A user who makes products on IMVU

CS, Customer Service. IMVU staff who make final rulings on catalog content.

What is Peer Review

Peer Review is IMVU's method of pre screening products for compliance to the site's Virtual Goods Content Policy and a product's functionality.

Every product in the catalog must be pre-screened before it will be available for sale in the catalog, available for gifting, or seen by others in chat.

You peers, that is other content creators, will pre-screen your product and its product page and will give it a pass or fail vote based on VGP compliance.

All content creators above the age of 18 are asked to participate in the Peer Review process. This age limit is to protect minors from exposure to adult content that is regularly attempted to be submitted in the General Audience Catalog.

 

Common Misconceptions About Peer Review

My product passed Peer Review so it cannot be flagged. FALSE Peer review is only a pre-screening, it does not guarantee your product or product page actually is VGP compliant.

The product I purchased passed Peer Review so it will not be re-rated or taken away from me. FALSE Peer Review does not guarantee the product you purchased is rated properly nor does it guarantee there is no Copyright or Trademark infringement that may get the product removed from the catalog.

Peer review is for screening out Copy Written and Trademarked products. FALSE, peer review is SOLELY for measuring products against the VGP issues listed on the Peer Review page. Copyright and TM infringement claims can only be issued by the parties the items were stolen from.

 

Most Common Issues that will make a product fail Peer Review

Incomplete Icons and Confusing Product Descriptions: If your products Icon or product page is not complete your product may fail Peer Review. 'Coming Soon' and other placeholder images that confuse the viewer and misrepresent what the product is can fail.

MCG Failure: For General Audience items if ANY red pixels show when you try on the MCG skin (minimum coverage guide), your product should fail peer review. Common areas missed are the groin, bottom, and under 3D layers. If your product has layers, ALL layers MUST be MCG compliant. Just because a skirt or top has a layer covering the breasts or groin does not make it compliant. Camera though all areas of your garment to see if ANY red can be seen, if can it your garment fails the General Audience MCG.

Inappropriate Product Page Content: Not only must your product pass, your product page must pass too. Many times a product is fully compliant but a poorly chosen product shot or banner image will cause an item to fail. If your product is GA each and every item on your product page must also be GA compliant. Show skins in MCG complaint clothing, keep racy images to AP items only.

 

How do I submit my product for Peer Review


Once your Product and its Product page are FULLY completed and ready for public consumption hit the 'Click here to Publish it Link' in the red box at the top of the product page.

DO NOT PUBLISH AN INCOMPLETE PAGE! Peer Review is clogged enough with finished products, adding products and product pages that are not yet complete just clogs the system as they will be resubmitted to peer review when you make any product page change. Be considerate to your fellow devs and those doing peer review and don't waste their time by submitting incomplete work.

One you click publish the waiting game begins. Peer Review can take several days to complete as there are far fewer Content Creators reviewing than there are submitting products.

You can track the status of your item during the Peer Review process by clicking the link at the top of its page. (currently borken)

You do not need a 100% score to pass just a clear majority. If your votes are not clear one way or another the product will be sent to staff for a final decision.

Note: If you have received just one fail but your product passed you should still take a look at your product closely. That one fail may have been the only person that truly looked at your item. Just because your item was passed does not mean the product is immune from flagging or won't be failed upon staff review. You and not your review score are responsible for being VGP complaint, and you not your reviewers will be held fiscally responsible for product refunds if the product is later found to be incompetent and removed from use.


My Product Failed Peer Review

If your product failed Peer Review, you have three options...

Live with it: If the item is truly AP and altering it to make it GA will change the product just leave it as AP. The AP customer base can be a lucrative market. If the item is truly UFI you need to get more familiar with what content IMVU allows and what it doesn't.

Repair it: If its just a minor product tweak needed, or an improper product page image issue you can fix the problem and then email ratingdispute@imvu.com notifying them of the repair and ask for a case review.

Contest it: If you feel your product has been unjustly failed you can contest the ruling by emailing ratingdispute@imvu.com. Be sure you have fully examined your product and its page against the VGP before you do so. You may also want to get a second opinion. The IMVU CC forum users are often very helpful in explaining VGP issues your product may have that you do not see. Just be sure not to post any AP or UFI images to the forums. Links to an AP product page are okay as only AP holders can see them.

Note: About 90% of the users who claim their clothing was unjustly re-rated in the forums had products that failed the MCG or had items on their product page images that would fail the MCG.

 

How to Participate in Peer Review

If you are over 18 and a Content Creator you are asked to actively participate in Peer Review. The more people that participate, and do so conscientiously, will speed up the approval process for everyone. Remember many of our developers are minors and cannot participate so everyone who is of age will need to review more items than they submits to get everything though the process in a timely manner.

First and foremost you must be familiar with the VGP and the MCG. You should already be familiar with them as all your products should be abiding by them.

Next make sure your IMVU client is up to date and running in the background. You will need the client running to pre screen 3D items. It is a good idea to go into DND 'Do Not Disturb' mode so you are not interrupted with chat invites when reviewing.

Once you feel comfortable with the polices go to the IMVU website and go to the 'Create' section. Under 'Manage' you will see Peer Review. Click on that and you will be taken to an item to review.


Note: If you have multiple users on your computer or have multiple IMVU accounts you will want to verify you are logged in as the CC account you want to earn credit for reviewing on.


The Peer Review Page

On the Peer Review page you will see three tabs, you will want to explore these before you begin.

Review a Product Tab: This tab displays an item to be reviewed.

The First section shows the item's Location in the catalog, Name, Icon, and the Product's Description box.

Below that is the Peer Review checklist. Any box you check will fail the item.

The Main categorizes for failure are:

Product Submission Problems: This is for such issues the product submitted is not the same product represented by its product page.

Technical Problems: This is for when a product doesn't load or is broken in some manner. Try loading the product 3 times before failing an item for not loading, as many times this is an IMVU client issue and not a product issue.

Sex or Obscenity: This encompasses sexual content, nudity, MCG failures, Profanity.

Violence: This encompasses gross depictions of Blood, Gore and Violent Acts.

Gambling: This encompass' ACTUAL wagering. this is for if the product or product page links to a site that has online wagering or gambling. Simulated gambling, such as a poker tables or slot machines that do not require actual wagering are allowed.

Alcohol Tobacco and Drugs: All tobacco and Alcohol use is AP only. Drug use and paraphernalia is not allowed.

Abuse: Any representation of abuse is not allowed.

Suicide: Any representation of suicide is not allowed.

Personal Info: Any product made to slander or defame another User, Person, or Staff member is not allowed.

At the bottom of the page is where you confirm your vote or pass on voting.

If you have not checked any box there will be a 'Product passes' box. This is what you click to confirm that you believe this item is VGP complaint.

If you have checked one or more of the failure reasons this will be a red 'Product fails' box. This is what you click to confirm that you believe this item is NOT VGP complaint.

There is also a 'Skip this product' option. You may select this option if you are not sure about an item or are uncomfortable with voting on an item.

 

My Review History Tab:

Here is were you see the most recent items you have reviewed and how others have scored the same items, they are broken into 4 sections. It is recommended you take this page not too literally as there is much controversy about it, but before I delve into that first an overview of what you are looking at...

Pending: These are items still in the review process and needing more votes to pass or fail.

Your Correct Votes: these are items that the majority of your peers agreed with your vote on.

Your Incorrect Votes: these are items that the majority of your peers did not agree with your vote on.

Your Canceled Votes: these are times that someone has made changes to the product or its page during the review process thus canceling out your and all others votes.

You can click on any item to see a more detailed breakdown of the votes.

 

Now for a bit of explanation of the problems with this page...

In short the 'Correct' and 'Incorrect' scores are based on you against your peers not based on actual accuracy. Its as if someone were to hold up a red card and asks everyone to vote on what color is. You say red but everyone else says blue. The end score is that you were 'wrong' because everyone else said it was blue, even though it was truly red. Well ain't that just frustrating as heck! Welcome to Peer Review!!!

Many, often times it seems the majority, of people doing peer review either do not fully understand the VGP, don't actually look at the items in 3D preview, or just don't like the idea of Peer Review and are passing everything to make a statement about the process. What this means to those doing Peer Review accurately is that your Peer Review 'Correct' and 'Incorrect' scores do not actually represent your accuracy at peer review.

At the writing of this document IMVU insists on making this false 'accuracy' score count towards Tier level points, in spite that the system as it is today is incredibly flawed. As it stands now it punishes those doing review the right way with a negative score while letting thousands of products a day pass into the system with a perceived green light that should not have. Points WILL be taken off your score even though the product you voted fail on truly should have been failed.

My personal mindset has been, just to keep doing it the right way and shake my head at the whole system. My personal Accuracy rating varies between 70-90%. I choose instead to be proud of my 'Incorrect Votes' and Tier score be dammed.

The IMVU Content Creator Forums has many threads on and about this flawed system. If you wish to discuss or debate Peer Review that is the venue to do so.

If you wish to contact IMVU directly about the Peer Review system you may email feedback to creatorsupport@imvu.com. They are well aware of this issues with the system and promise they are working on solutions.


FAQ Tab:

This is just a brief about Peer Review section. It has a few common questions and contact information for support

 

How to Review an Item

Go to the Review a product tab.

Note: If this doesn't load you may have to reload the Peer Review page from the Create Page. There are several navigation issues with Peer Review pages not loading properly.

You will be presented with a product to review, this may be presented a GA item or if you are an Access Pass holder an AP item. You will want to note whether this is to be an AP item as they have less stringent rules.

First Look at the product name, is it appropriate?

Next Look at the Icon, is it appropriate?

Now look at the product's description. Is it appropriate ? Images are not necessary here. The description can be as simple as 'blond hair'. As long as the product is blond hair that is a pass.

If there are images here, is every image and the language used in them appropriate?

If the item is to be GA are all the items and clothing used in the advertising also GA?

Many times a product is complaint but the graphics on the description are not. You must measure all of the contents of the products advertising against the VGP.

If the product is a 3D item you next will have a 'View Product in 3D' option, click this and the IMVU Peer Review room will load as well as the product in question. All 3D products should be screened in 3D to verify the cfl works, they are the same product the product page says it is, and for VGP compliance.

For GA garments you must complete a MCG coverage check. The model in the room will be wearing the MCG skin. In order to do a complete check you will have to camera in, around and even though the garment to check for red pixels. If any red areas are rendering, no matter how hidden from view they are, the product fails.


Voting

If everything checks out and you didn’t mark anything off you will have a green Product Passes button.

If you have found issues and checked them off you will instead have a red Product Fails button.

Click that button and you have submitted your vote.

If you are ever unsure if a product should pass or fail or are uncomfortable about voting on it for any reason then you may hit the ‘Skip this product’ button to skip that product.

Once the vote or skip is clicked a new product will be presented to you for review.

 

 

I hope this guide helped clear up many of the confusions and frustrations about the Peer Review system.

It’s far form the best solution but its what we’ve got so we have to deal with it. Every over 18 content creator is free to chose their level of participation in the system.

I personally want thank those who take the time to do Peer Review as intended, a method to prescreen products for appropriate content before they go live to the users at large. Remember many of our users are minors and this, when done correctly and thoroughly, is a method to protect them for content they should not have access too.

 

 
 
 
 
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