Hide

Welcome to Steepster, an online tea community.

Write a tea journal, see what others are drinking and get recommendations from people you trust. or Learn More

Jason admin said

Steepster FAQ

Welcome to the Steepster FAQ! If you have anything other questions or want to mention something I may have missed, just leave a comment on the discussion. As I update the page and respond to your questions, I’ll remove the comments from below. Enjoy!

P.S. There’s a Tips & Tricks section and the bottom with a few helpful pointers.

Steepster Basics:

What is a tasting note and how do I write one?
Tasting notes are essentially reviews of a specific tea. Unlike one-time reviews, tasting notes can be logged multiple times for the same tea to indicate differences in taste, preparation, etc. To write a tasting note, click the “Add Tasting Note” button on a tea page.

What is “Following” a user and why should I do it?
Similar to Twitter or Facebook, when you follow a user, all of their tasting notes and other Steepster activity will be displayed in your dashboard so you can keep up with what they’re drinking. Following fellow tea drinkers is the best way to learn about a person’s tea tastes and gather valuable recommendations.

How can I find a tea on the site?
Use the search bar in the top right to search the name of a tea and/or the name of the tea company. If you can’t find it there, you can also try looking under the Teas tab by using the various sorts and the company pop-ups in the top right section. If you don’t find the one you’re looking for, feel free to add it!

Who is created this awesome site?
Steepster was created by Mike, Jack and Jason.
http://steepster.com/mike
http://steepster.com/jack
http://steepster.com/jason
Ricky has also joined our group and can help out if necessary.
http://steepster.com/rickyc

Who can I contact if I have a problem/find a bug/need to report an issue?
Please email ([email protected]) or Private Message Jason if you have any questions or issues that need to be addressed by an admin. If you can’t get in touch with him, try Ricky ([email protected]).

Frequently Asked Questions

Dashboard:

What are notices?
The notices tab will show you updates to things you’ve recently interacted with. So, if someone commented on your tasting note, or in a discussion you started, it will be listed under the notifications tab so you can quickly find it again.

What is in the recent activity tab?
This tab shows the activity for ONLY people you’re following so you can stay up-to-date with their Steepster interactions. If someone you’re not following comments on one of your tasting notes, that will not show up here – look for that under the Notices tab.

Account Settings:

What is my display name?
This is the name people will see whenever your name is listed on the site (like when your avatar is shown next to your comments or on your tealog). This does not change your fundamental username which is used in the URL for your profile. For example, a user could have the display name “Bob” but their actual username would still be that shown in the URL of their profile page, like http://steepster.com/bob_rules

How do I link my Twitter, Facebook, and/or Gmail accounts?
Under the “Accounts” tab in the Account Settings section, you can click the “Link” button next to whatever external account you want to link. Once you do so, you’ll be able to login to Steepster by just clicking the corresponding account button on the homepage or login page. If you connected one of these accounts to create your initial Steepster account, it should already be connected and the button should say “Unlink”.

How can I link multiple external accounts to my Steepster account?
To connect multiple external accounts to the same Steepster account, make sure to login to your Steepster account first and then connect the external account from the Account Settings page. If you click another account from the login/signup page, you run the risk of creating a duplicate account. If that happens send an email to jason(at)steepster.com.

We don’t currently support connecting any other types of external accounts or e-commerca sites.

How do I remove my account?
Send an email to jason(at)steepster.com.

How can I stop/start receiving email notifications about Steepster activity?
In your account, click the “Email Settings” tab and check/uncheck the boxes for the notices you want to receive.

Can I update my tealog by responding to the daily reminder email?
Nope. That will just go to our emails (we love that you’re drinking tea, but your tealog is a better place than our inboxes for that).

Public Profile & Tealog:

How do I follow someone?
Click the “Follow” button in the top right section of the profile page of the user you want to follow.

Who can comment on my posts?
Anyone is free to comment on your posts. However, if you see anything that would violate our terms of service, you can delete comments left on your tasting notes (you cannot delete comments on other users’ tasting notes).

How can I “like” a post?
Just click the little heart underneath their tasting note. Once you’ve liked a post the heart will be red. The likes are part of the equation to help determine which posts are most popular.

Tea Page & Teas:

How do I write a tasting note?
Click the “Add Tasting Note” button in the top right of a tea page. That will pop up a form where you can add your thoughts, preparation details, and a rating.

How do I edit a tasting note?
Go to the “Tealog” tab of your public profile (http://www.steepster.com/USERNAME) and click the “Edit” button next to tasting note you want to edit or delete which opens the tasting note form. Make your changes and click save.

How do I delete a tasting note?
Go to the “Tealog” tab of your public profile (http://www.steepster.com/USERNAME) and click the “Edit” button next to tasting note you want to edit or delete which opens the tasting note form. Click the “Delete This Note” link in the bottom left of the tasting note form.

What is the Shopping List?
The shopping list is an easy way to mark teas you want to remember later, kinda like writing a shopping list :). Hopefully, this helps when you’re trying to figure out which teas to buy. To be clear, the shopping list is not the same thing as a shopping cart and it does not mean you can buy the teas on your list. For more info, read the next question.

How do I buy a tea? Do you sell teas on Steepster?
We don’t sell any teas on Steepster (not counting Steepster Select). Some of the tea pages link offsite to the tea company’s site where you can purchase the tea. In these cases you’ll see a “Buy this tea from X company” link. If you don’t see this link it means we don’t have a offsite link where you can buy this tea. If you would like to purchase a tea that doesn’t have this link, we suggest you go to that company’s website and/or contact them directly. This links can only be added by a site admin. Ideally we’d have links for all the teas, but there are too many teas for us to keep up with it. The teas that currently have links are just lucky.

What is the Cupboard?
This is a way to indicate which teas you currently own. You can add teas to your cupboard whether you have enough for 1 cup or have a whole pound, it’s up to you how you use it!

I can edit the information on the tea page?
Yes! Tea information on Steepster is contributed by the community, like a Wikipedia for tea. Just click the “Edit Tea Info” button and you can add or change things like the tea image, type, or description.

The name for a tea company with a lot of teas is spelled wrong. What should I do?
If you find a company like this, it’s best to contact an admin. We can edit companies and merge teas if needed, so that will be the easiest way to solve the issue.

What if I can’t find a tea?
If you’ve used the search and still can’t find the tea you’re looking for, you can add it on your own. When searching, click the “Don’t see your tea? Add it” or go to http://www.steepster.com/teas/new and add the relevant information.

What if the company who sells the tea I’m adding isn’t already on Steepster?
No worries, just enter the correct company name in the “Company name” field when you create your new tea. Then, when you save the tea the company will be added automatically.

I rated a tea but the “Steepster Score” is different. Why is this?
The Steepster score is the final result after all of the scores have been calculated. We do not use a straight average, so if there is a single rating of 80, it is likely that the Steepster Score will be something different (probably lower). This is because we use a Bayesian method to calculate the Steepster Score. You can read more about the ratings system here:
http://steepster.tumblr.com/post/247562587/brewing-a-better-rating-system-the-2nd-steep
http://steepster.tumblr.com/post/226679106/better-rating-system
The main idea is to prevent outlier ratings from skewing the overall ratings. The system takes into account other factors like the popularity of the tea and company, and how those relate to other teas and companies in the system. This means that a tea with a single rating of 100 will have a lower Steepster Score than a tea that has 20 ratings of 99, preventing teas from shooting to the top or bottom of the rankings just because of a few extreme ratings.

How can I remove my rating from a tea.
Go to the “Tealog” tab of your public profile (http://www.steepster.com/USERNAME) and click the “Edit” button next to tasting note you want to edit or delete which opens the tasting note form. Then click the little gray “x” next to the word “rating” and that will remove your rating. Then save.

When I edit my rating on one tasting note it changes the ratings for all of my tasting notes for that same tea. Why is that?
While you can log a tea multiple times and leave multiple tasting notes, you can only have one rating per tea. This prevents tea ratings from being artificially raised/lowered by being consumed multiple times a single person. The most recent rating will be used as your rating for a tea.

How are the “Related Teas” on the tea page determined?
We use an open source search engine that determines relevant teas based on name. it’s pretty basic now, but we’d look to make it more sophisticated in the future.

How are search results determined?
Using the same search engine system mentioned in the question above. It’s based on the tea name.

Can I rate a tea company?
We didn’t plan to support this yet, however, SimpliciTEA come up with a clever way using our system to do so. If you create a location under the “places” tab to represent the company, you can then rate the company. You’ll have to have a physical address for the company, which you can usually find on their website (even if it’s not a retail store). Just be sure to include “- Online” after the name of the company when you create it. You can see the ones users have already added by searching “Online” in the “named” field on the places tab.

For more info on this and the full instructions/template from SimpliciTEA, check out this discussion: http://steepster.com/discuss/2134-help-me-review-online-tea-retailers

Discussions:

How can I find a specific discussion or one about a specific topic?
Use the search bar (that says “Find a topic or reply…”) on the right side of the discussion page. Do not use the search bar in the top right, that is for searching the site for teas.

How can I find out if other users have responded to a discussion topic?
Click the “Subscribe to Topic” button in the top right of the page. This will send a notification to your dashboard (under the notices tab) and email you the latest update.

Can I respond to a discussion by replying to the email notification?
No. You can only respond on the discussion page. If you reply to the email notice, we’ll be the only ones to see what you have to say :)

How can I report spammers or bad behavior in the discussions?
Contact a site admin (jason or Ricky). Contact info is listed at the top. In either case, do not try to correct the situation on your own, it will likely only make it worse. The site admins have the tools and authority to best address these situations.

Is it okay for me to tell people about good deals/coupons or ask for charitable support?
These are only okay if they are relating to tea. And then they still need to done appropriately. No one is going to respond well if you are spamming the discussions and links. If you handle it with class, people will respond positively.

Places:

How do I review a place?
You must first rate the place by clicking the starts before you can write a review about it. Once you do that, the submission form will pop up (very similar to the tasting note form).

I tried to add a new location but it didn’t work (there was an error or the location was not valid). How can I add a new location?
Places are plugged into Google Maps so it can display the physical location. Sometimes certain addresses can’t be found in Google Maps, which creates an error during the process of creating the new location. If you’re having trouble with this, contact us and we’ll do our best to list your location.

Can I add a location outside of the US?
The places was originally built to accommodate US only. In certain instances, it will accept locations outside the US, but it doesn’t work consistently. If it doesn’t seem to work, feel free to contact us, but we might not be able to help at the moment.

Can I rate an online tea company?
We didn’t plan to support this yet, however, SimpliciTEA come up with a clever way using our system to do so. If you create a location under the “places” tab to represent the company, you can then rate the company. You’ll have to have a physical address for the company, which you can usually find on their website (even if it’s not a retail store). Just be sure to include “- Online” after the name of the company when you create it. You can see the ones users have already added by searching “Online” in the “named” field on the places tab.

For more info on this and the full instructions/template from SimpliciTEA, check out this discussion: http://steepster.com/discuss/2134-help-me-review-online-tea-retailers

Steepster Select:

I’m a tea company. How can I have our products featured in your Tea of the Month Club (Steepster Select)?
Send an email to jason @ steepster.com for more information. We’re always looking for new samples.

Messages:

How can I send a private message?
Under the letter icon in the navigation bar, click the “Compose a New Message” button in the top right. You can also message a user by clicking on the “Send Message” link next to their username on their profile page.

How come a specific user doesn’t show up in my private messages list?
You can only send private messages to people who are following you (similar to Twitter). If you want to communicate with someone privately, you can reach out to them publicly and ask them to follow you. Please don’t share any personal information publicly.

Tea Companies:

Can I create a company account on Steepster?
Not at the moment, but hopefully in the future. In the mean time, we ask that you make your affiliation with any tea companies known on your profile page.

Is it okay for me to tell people about good deals/coupons or ask for charitable support?
These are only okay if they are relating to tea. And then they still need to done appropriately. No one is going to respond well if you are spamming the discussions and links. If you handle it with class, people will respond positively. If you create a discussion about some deal or promo, be sure to categorize it as such.

If I work for a tea company should I rate our teas?
Technically you can, but we recommend that you don’t, especially if you’re trying to artificially increase your rating. People will notice and they won’t like it.

How can I get the “Buy this now” links on my teas?
Those links can only be added by site admins. We can add links to your teas but it will likely take a while for us to get around to it. Because of this, we ask that you email a spreadsheet listing your tea page URLS next to the corresponding URL on Steepster. You can email that to jason @ steepster.com. We’ll do our best to have them updated in a timely manner.

Tips & Tricks:

Want to search better?
Use as much info as you can in the search. The name of a tea and the name of the company will help you find things easier. The live search is pretty sensitive, so be careful with spelling and use of punctuation. If you put a dash in the wrong place, everything after the dash will likely be a bad search. So if you’re not sure about spelling or punctuation, try to put that word at the end of your search.

Want to see a larger version of a user’s avatar?
Right click on the avatar and click the “Copy image URL” or equivalent option on your computer. Then paste that link into a new window/tab, and it will look something like this (this one is mine):
http://s3.amazonaws.com/media.steepster.com/avatars/2/small.jpg

Then in the URL, change the word “small” to large, so that it looks like this, and click enter:
http://s3.amazonaws.com/media.steepster.com/avatars/2/large.jpg

Then you’ll be able to a larger version of the avatar!

Want to format text in the discussions?
Check out this awesome guide put together by our users:

Below are some of the ways to format text in Steepster that I have discovered using every symbol on my standard English keyboard (I believe these symbols are within the standard ASCII character set).

Surround the text with these symbols—with no spaces on either side (or it won’t work) to get the desired effect. I put spaces in the examples on the right otherwise the symbols won’t show up. I had to use ……… to add white-space, as the editor/parser won’t accept tabs or white-space:

BOLD……………………………………………….* BOLD *
ITALICS……………………………………………. _ ITALICS _
BOLD-AND-ITALICS………………………..* _ BOLD-AND-ITALICS _ *
UNDERLINE………………………………………+ UNDERLINE +
MAKES-FONT-SIZE-SMALLER………………………~ MAKES-FONT-SIZE-SMALLER ~
SUPERSCRIPT…………………………………….^ SUPERSCRIPT ^
STRIKETHROUGH……………………………- STRIKETHROUGH -
……………………………< YOU CAN’T SEE ME UNLESS YOU’RE THE AUTHOR AND YOU TRY TO EDIT THIS POST >
→………………………………………………………………. – >
18pt font size…………% {font-size:18pt}18pt font size %
text in red………………………….% {color:red}text in red %

Here’s the Wikipedia page with a table of instructions
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Textile_(markup_language)#Formatting_help_table

With the exception of the last set of symbols, you can use any combination of these such that the symbols on the right hand side must be in the reverse order of those used on the left hand side: First In Last Out (FILO), like a stack. 123Words about the noble leaf321.

Want to see the most recent tasting notes from the entire community?
Go to the explore tab and click the “browse” link or the area with the number of tasting notes on Steepster. Or just go directly there from this link: http://steepster.com/recent

Want to see all the tea companies on Steepster and how many teas they have listed?
Go to the explore tab and click the area listing the number of tea companies on Steepster. Or just go directly there from this link:
http://steepster.com/companies

Want to rate an online tea company that doesn’t have a brick-and-mortar store?
For more info on this and the full instructions/template from SimpliciTEA, check out this discussion: http://steepster.com/discuss/2134-help-me-review-online-tea-retailers

Want to quickly see only teas of a single type when filtering on the best teas page?
When looking through the teas here (http://steepster.com/teas), you can use the filters on the right to limit the results to specific types of teas. If you want to see only teas of a single type, instead of unchecking all the other boxes, just click the blue name of the one you want to see. This will uncheck all of the other boxes for you. So to see only black teas, just click “Black” in the check list. To undo this and see all types again, just go back in your browser or click the “Select All” text above the checkboxes.

0 Replies

Login or sign up to leave a comment.