Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

You Get What You Pay For With Online Q & A Sites, Study Shows

Date:
April 11, 2008
Source:
University of Minnesota
Summary:
Computer science and engineering researchers revealed that the answer quality provided by online question-and-answer Web sites, such as Yahoo! Answers and Google Answers, depends on two factors -- how much you pay and how many people contribute to your answer.

A new study by University of Minnesota computer science and engineering researchers revealed that the answer quality provided by online question-and-answer Web sites, such as Yahoo! Answers and Google Answers, depends on two factors--how much you pay and how many people contribute to your answer.

Related Articles


The University of Minnesota study posed 126 questions across a variety of Q&A sites and found that paying $10 or more to get your question answered at the now-closed Google Answers site yielded the highest-quality answers as judged by a panel of evaluators. These answers were long and detailed, with many links to source material.

Surprisingly the Web site Yahoo! Answers, which provides answers for free, performed as well as Google Answers when the fee was low ($3) and outperformed reference librarians and an "ask-an-expert" site. Researchers attributed this success to the large online community that contributes to that site's answers.

University of Minnesota researchers involved in the study include computer science and engineering professor Joseph Konstan and graduate student Max Harper. Their study examined a variety of questions eliciting facts, opinions and advice on topics spanning entertainment, technology and business. Examples of some of the questions posted are:

  • Which actress has the first female line in a talking movie" I found on Wikipedia that Al Jolson had the male line, but I can't find any record of which female had the first line.
  • What is the best technique for making BBQ spare ribs" I'll cook it if you can find me a recipe that's really worth the time and effort.

Of the findings, Konstan said, "Solutions that simply direct questions to a single individual don't achieve results as well as those that open the question and answers to a larger community."

The results of the study are reported in the academic research paper titled "Predictors of Answer Quality in Online Q&A Sites." The paper was published in the Association for Computing Machinery's 2008 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2008) proceedings, and presented at the conference in Florence, Italy, April 8.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Minnesota. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Computers & Math News

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

European Parliament Might Call For Google's Break-Up

European Parliament Might Call For Google's Break-Up

Newsy (Nov. 22, 2014) This is the latest development in an antitrust investigation accusing Google of unfairly prioritizing own products and services in search results. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google Announces Improvements To Balloon-Borne Wi-Fi Project

Google Announces Improvements To Balloon-Borne Wi-Fi Project

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) In a blog post, Google said its balloons have traveled 3 million kilometers since the start of Project Loon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Nintendo Making A Comeback With 'Super Smash Bros.'?

Is Nintendo Making A Comeback With 'Super Smash Bros.'?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Nintendo released new "Super Smash Bros." Friday, and it's getting great reviews. Could this mean a comeback for the gaming company? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
NSA Director: China Can Damage US Power Grid

NSA Director: China Can Damage US Power Grid

AP (Nov. 20, 2014) China and "one or two" other countries are capable of mounting cyberattacks that would shut down the electric grid and other critical systems in parts of the United States, according to Adm. Michael Rogers, director of the National Security Agency and hea Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins