Today marks the second of three planned updates to LEGO Ideas this fall, aimed at improving the experience by analyzing your survey feedback and comments, our user experience testing, and conversations with many of you at LEGO fan events.
Here’s a list of updates:
- New Discover page filter for Project Category lets you choose to view only “original” projects, only projects based on third-party intellectual property (IP), or both. Choose “Original” if you don’t want to see projects based on movies, games, brands, etc. Original will show you projects based on existing LEGO playthemes like Ninjago, Friends, or Classic Space, as well as all those completely original concepts by LEGO Ideas members. These are filtered based on how members classify their own projects when asked about IP before submitting. If you happen to see a project incorrectly categorized, let us know by email while we work our way through the new filtered lists ourselves to check for any mistakes.
- New Discover page Trending This Week filter. This works just like Trending this Month, but for the week.
- Discover page Staff Picks view now sorts projects by Staff Pick date. This should be more intuitive for frequent visitors. Before, this view sorted by the date the project was posted.
- Goodbye, Search page, hello Discover page. We “fixed” the search bar in the site header to load the Discover page which allows you to filter and sort your results.
- Member search moves to the Community page. We improved the Leaderboard so it now behaves like the Discover page; you can search for members and sort results by several parameters.
- Tags are now clickable! Open a project and scroll down to the tags. Click one and the Discover page will load with the tag added to the filter.
Changes to Supporter Milestones and Targets
The biggest change is a Guidelines update we’ve applied to all projects starting today.
We’re attempting to balance making LEGO Ideas as open as possible to members with a range of skill levels, with peoples’ desire to browse and support beautifully presented models. We consistently hear from people who want to see more projects they think are “high quality” and fewer they think are “low quality.” We say think, because quality is highly subjective. This feedback persists even when our moderators filter out the majority of submissions for not meeting our Project Quality Standards.
The most successful Ideas projects—those that reach 5,000 and 10,000 supporters—share one thing in common: every one of these projects posted since LEGO Ideas launched in April 2014 reached 100 supporters in their first 30 days. No project that has gone on to reach 5k or 10k supporters has taken longer. It could very well be that the “wisdom of crowds” is the best quality filter of all. We’ve decided to let you tell us which projects are high quality by doing what you do best: supporting your favorite projects.
Starting today, projects will have 60 days to reach their first 100 supporters before receiving time extensions.
- New projects will now have 60 days to reach 100 supporters. Once they reach that milestone, they’ll receive a one-year boost. The six-month boosts at 1,000 and 5,000 remain the same.
- Existing projects with less than 100 supporters have had their Days Left clock adjusted to 60. We’ve left an Official Comment on the affected projects letting them know.
While in the short term we’re adjusting the Days Left on some projects down, the change grants new projects an additional 60 days beyond the current two years to reach 10,000 supporters.
Why did you remove Days Left from existing projects?
We decided to put projects with fewer than 100 supporters on an even playing field with new projects. Otherwise, we would wait a year before seeing the full benefit of the new expiration deadlines.
How many projects were affected?
Approximately 58% of the 5,500 active projects have had their Days Left counter reset to 60. Had we set the threshold to 30 days, 66% of projects would have been effected. These percentages are based on a sampling of active projects as of July 24.
What happens if my project expires?
If your project expires before reaching 100 supporters, we encourage you to improve your idea, re-submit it, and sharpen your promotion skills to get the support you need.
Want 100, 1,000 or even 10,000 supporters?
As always, success is ultimately in your hands, which is why we always encourage you to focus on a high quality presentation and promoting your projects to a broad audience outside the online LEGO fan community. If you don’t know where to start, learn from the Ideas members who have done just that. Check out these tips on getting a project to 10k:
- Ghostbusters fan creator Brent Waller wrote a dedicated guest blog post with advice for an effective project.
- You don’t have to spend 10 years developing your project like Angus MacLane did. Watch a video interview with the WALL·E fan designer, and check out Angus’ interview on the LEGO Ideas blog.
- Focus on promotion. Doctor Who fan designer Andy Clark says it took as much work promoting his project to reach 10,000 supporters as it did designing.
- Glen Wadleigh and Ellen Kooijman (The Big Bang Theory) break down their promotion techniques in detail on this video, starting at 2:58.
On behalf of the team, we’re pleased to bring you this update and hope you enjoy the improvements to the LEGO Ideas site. We’re looking forward to the third and final planned 2016 site update coming next month.