It all sounds great overall, but we are a bit concerned with the fact that the review program (and benefits) will still be based on ranks. To quote: "These levels will be earned by achieving a minimum rank, submitting a minimum # of reviews, and being a contributor for a minimum period of time."
We have been here for almost 5 years and, as we all know, rank is heavily influenced by the number of reviews written. Please keep that in mind as you read.
What we have seen happen is that most people come into Eden pumped up and excited, spitting out loads of reviews, good or bad. We have even seen Eden assign extra free items to our students while they were still in Mentor class, above and beyond the 2 they were given in class. Most of them have been assigned several more in short order after they graduated (like, in less than a month's time.) Even without extra freebies, that initial writing rush pushes most of the newest members higher in rank faster than the others, regardless of the quality of their reviews.
Then, based on the current way that rank is calculated, a year later those no-longer-new reviewers will fall, unless they can keep writing at that same frantic pace to keep their numbers consistent. That is the worst part, because after that amount of time on Eden the people who aren't dedicated to writing good reviews tend to go away, and the ones who stay have refined their technique enough to be really good. And yet some of the newest reviewers on board will outrank them within a few months.
Now, for those of you who are saying "Yeah but it's not just the number of reviews, it's how people vote on them too." think of this:
If you submit one review today that gets 10 "Good" votes, you're still not going to be able to keep up in rank with the person who submits 10 reviews today that gets 2 "Good" votes each. And yes, in our time as Editors we did see some people submitting 10 reviews a day.
Unless there are plans to not weight a reviewer's rank using the current system, a lot of the seasoned reviewers will quickly be at the bottom of the new system's benefits barrel. It just bums us out because we've already seen too many great reviewers (and forum contributors) leave out of frustration.