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We rate layouts....

And give you an honest opinion.

Elite Paid Account Layouts (Journal Rating Comm.)
Posting Access:
All Members , Moderated
This is a community for people with paid custom layouts that they personally made. Here, they can be judged by our members. We will also post contests and the like for our members, and answer any questions that members have when designing their layouts.

This is an exclusive layout community. We will give you criticism on your layout, do not take this as a personal attack.

This is NOT a place for requesting layouts or asking for layout tips!

Free Users
Sorry, but free users are not allowed here. However, we do have a sister community exclusively for free account layouts. Visit free_elite, it is our sister community.

Ready to Apply?
Simply make a post requesting to be graded. That's it. Only elaborate on information pertaining to your layout that you think we should know.

Understand that we only grade on your lastn events page, and that your friends and calendar pages neither help nor hurt your score. This also means that you can't apply for membership using your calendar, friends, or day view layouts.

Included in the list of things you can't apply with are GreatestJournal [or any other journal base] layouts and homepage layouts. Once you become an accepted member based on your LJ layout, however, asking for design help/opinions on your other layouts is perfectly acceptable and encouraged.

The Criteria
The following is a general criteria of what we grade on. Please note all base scores start at 7.:

1) graphic quality and customization - image compression, how your images are edited
2) organization - easy navigation
3) originality - unique theme, set-up
4) technical - no messy lines, no obvious seams. Also no horizontal scrollbars(unless part of the design), color, balance, and no misalignments
5) design - the layout as a whole

It MUST be coded by you. Not 90% but 100% original work.

Obviously, you don't have to draw the graphics personally, as long as you edited it yourself and gave credit.

Our voting system is based on numeral votes from 1-10. An overall grade of 10 means your layout is absolute perfection. These will be given out very rarely. If you recieve a 10, be proud. That means your layout is impeccable.

All scores start at a base of 7. This means you are automatically given a 7 just for applying, and the judge will either mark up or down depending on their grading of your design. The more they mark off, the lower below a 7 the overall score will fall. The more outstanding your layout is, the higher above a 7 the score will rocket. So now you understand that receiving, for example, an overall of 6.5 isn't as bad as you initially thought it to be.

Do not comment on any other posts while you are still being judged. You will be warned only once, after that you will be banned. Also, do not change your layout during the grading process. Doing so means you will be stamped out and must wait 7 days to re-submit. This is strictly enforced.

You may also become banned if you bad mouth members/mods/the comm in your personal journal for rating a certain way. We understand that it is your journal, and you can write about whatever you like. However, we only want to have a friendly enviroment here at L_E, and try to only accept members who are gung-ho about the community and its judges. If you constantly talk badly about us, yet continue to reapply after being rejected, it's within our full rights to deny you membership without application due to your hostile attitude. No one here wants a fellow judge who has stated their dislike for the members through nasty and crude language and spread a horrible and misguided impression of us through their friends list.

Stamping will take place after around 8 member votes or one full week. Time and number of votes may vary for certain applicants, depending on how active the community is at that time. We ask that you wait patiently and not hassle the mods about your application status or delete your application before stamping. Understand that we have lives and such, so don't panic if you aren't immediately stamped. We will stamp you eventually.

You may request to be judged as many times as you wish, but wait at least 48 hours before reapplying, and the mods have the right to delete your post if we feel you are not making adequate changes/spamming. Spamming also includes asking to be judged, but then removing your post before the application process is completed. This wastes the members' time and effort. If you are caught apply-spamming more than two times without giving a mod a beforehand reason and warning, you will be banned.

Keep in mind that some members may give weight to different things. It is thier vote, and they can use it however they wish, they have been judged and accepted by the members of the community. They will give comments on what they did or did not like. You are requesting to be judged, we are NOT forcing you to do this. Throwing a tantrum and attacking stamped members in the main comm will result in banning. We will give you helpful criticism to improve your layouts, simply take it and try again.

The bottom line is, if you can't accept criticism with dignity, this is not the place for you. Just because a judge may mark off a few points because your background slice doesn't align with your header image, that does not make that judge or the entire community horrible, terrible people, nor is it grounds for calling the judge a dirty name. We're sorry to say, friends, that if this is the way rating communities make you act, it would save you a lot of time and stress to not even apply in the first place. Most all of the people here are nice, friendly, and pretty much all around do-gooders. Don't assume you know anyone based on their rating.

If you are stamped as accepted by a mod with a score of 7.5 or above [keep in mind we never round up], you will be directed to this post to complete the application process. It's very crucial that you read over the entire post very carefully before commenting. If you fail to follow the rules and directions laid out by that post, your previous acceptance will be thrown out, and you'll be asked to resubmit and reapply as if you were a brand new applicant. This rule is highly enforced, so be sure and pay close attention to everything you read, and ask if you have questions or concerns!

Once you are voted in, you must participate. If you can not do this, then don't join. If you are going on a vacation or you will be away for a bit, simply post saying so.

You must post on your info somewhere that you are a member of layout_elitists. It will be checked.

When voting on new members, you must list a reasons for their scores. Even if it is late and you are in a rush, just a quick short comment will do as well. I expect the members to judge new applicants critically. Even if it is a layout of your favorite anime/singer/movie/whatever, do not be biased. Same applies if you hate the layout theme as well.

Do not get mean with the new applicants. You can be snarky. That is encouraged. But do not attack them and tell them that they suck. Rudeness will not be tolerated. Consider this your first and only warning.

Also, when your layout changes, you MUST make a post saying so. Every single time. At that time, we will judge you on your new layout. This is not a re-vote for your acceptance! We will simply critique your new layout. Put suject line as stamped to avoid confusion.

One more time
Marking down because you do not like the theme will NOT be tolerated. Yes, it is your opinion. You may rate them however you want. However, judge on the design! You can mark down if it is a very popular layout and it's not very original. But, keep the I hate anime, emo, etc. to yourself and try to vote on the layout itself. This also goes for giving applicants higher scores because you love the subject of their theme. Try to be objective.

Perfect 10s
These are not given out freely. They are for perfect layouts. If you are a member and start giving these out like candy you will be warned. You must judge critically.

About L_E's Layout
The current layout, "Touch the Clouds," was a joint design done by two of our mods, Yin and Kirei. morning_songs hand coded the entire design, and immoral made all the graphics using Photoshop 7.0. This layout uses tables, and should work well in all browsers and screen resolutions, as well as for Mac users. The matching accepted and rejected stamps can be found here and here.

Community Promotion
Promotion of other communities within L_E is strictly forbidden unless you have the permission of a mod. If you attempt to promote a community without our knowledge, your post will be immediately deleted. If you do obtain permission from a moderator to make your post, please include "this posted with [mod's username]'s permission," so that another maintainer doesn't come along and delete your entry. Most of the time a mod will not allow you to promote your community unless it is an affiliate to L_E, and a community can only become an affiliate if one of our members is a maintainer of said community.

1st Layout Contest Results
1st Place: kenobi: Layout
2nd Place: 3ndboss: Layout
3rd Place: dokuza: Layout

2nd Layout Contest Results : Survivor
Winner: immoral

3rd Layout Contest Results : Survivor
Winner: 3ndboss

Accepted Members

Mod: 3ndboss
Mod: immoral
Mod: morning_songs
Mod: sharpies
Mod: throw_rocks

Sister Communities
free_elite- Avg. of 7.5 needed for entrance (only free accounts).
elite_iconists- Avg. of 7.5 needed for entrance (based on icons not layouts).
elite_25- Yes/no challenge community for the top 25 layout makers of LJ.

Rating Affiliates
awesome_layouts- Avg. of 7 needed for entrance.
hello_hotness- Yes/no grading. More yes's than no's get you in.
journalrating- Yes/no grading. More yes's than no's get you in.
ohfuck_layouts- Harsh honest critics. Won't make you cry...too much.
visualcrack- A base icontest community. Lots of fun!
veracious_tone- Layout critiquing community by a one-man team.

Members' Links
Icon/Graphic Journals
farther_east [ morning_songs]
avanticons [ 3ndboss ]
icontemplation [ powercorrupts, fairypark, immoral ]
icontradiction [ throw_rocks ]

Graphic Websites