38 months ago
A while back we opened up build guides for everyone and made them votable. Our goal was to harness the collective intelligence and wisdom of the community and use it for good - producing good and useful build guides. And to an extent, we achieved that. We had several users invest a lot of time producing really good guides.
However, a lot of excellent guides were drowned out by guides of lower quality. We had many, many people using guides as part lists needing feedback. Or troll guides. Or "don't buy this" guides. In the end, I'd say the good and valid guides amounted to < 10% of the total.
For new users on the site, they'd see the guide section and then have a difficult time discerning which were of good quality and which were not. For the staff here, the moderation burden became too high. If it wasn't troll guides, it was part lists needing feedback (better suited for the forum) or people not being polite in the comment sections. Then a few weeks ago a bug (my fault) in caching caused the index to drop many guides from the index altogether. But just to be clear - the problems with guides existed for a long time before the indexing issues.
In the end, indexing community build guides was an experiment that didn't work.
What I've done is turned off indexing of community build guides. From here on out, the build guide index will list staff generated guides only. Users can still create guides, permalink them, get feedback and post comments on them, etc. They just won't be indexed on our build guide index page. It pains me to have to do this, but I think it is in the best interest of the novice builders who need them the most.