I Grade on A Curve.
The fact that I grade on a curve means that, by far, most things I grade end up in the middle of the scale. Even if there's nothing at all that I dislike about a release, the highest it will score is a 6/10 unless there's something in it that I really LOVE. This doesn't necessarily mean that I don't like it, just that I think it's average. To score higher than a 6/10, it has to be quite special. Likewise, to score lower than a 4/10, a release has to be downright irritating in some way.
This applies to everything I review. Most of what I look at is literary or musical in nature (which is a comprehensive spread that I argue includes video games, moves, & TV shows), but I've been know to review random products or services / companies that I have particularly strong feelings about (or when I'm asked to by a reader). If you want me to review something, anything at all, drop me a line!
To score a perfect 10, a release has to be worth a 10.
It needs to be PERFECT.
This pretty much NEVER happens.
Big Bang's HaruHaru is the song that made me fall in love with kpop.
I wrote my 15 page IB Senior Thesis on the MV.
Haru Haru is a 10.
(Cover-songs cannot score a 10. It's a Rule I have. Just accept it.)
Likewise, to score a 0, a release has to be actively offensive.
On multiple counts.
I don't throw 0's around lightly.
I can't actually think of anything I've ever rated as a 0.
Wait. We Found Love In A Hopeless Place - Rihanna,
actually that track got a .5 because even though the title is literally the only lyric, it wasn't actively offensive beyond the fact that it had taken ZERO effort to write (and it was kinda catchy).
Also, because the two extremes are so rare, I give half points when you get close to them.
I don't exactly have a standardized rubric that I'm making little tick marks on or anything, but I do look at a fairly regular list of criteria for evaluation: use of rhythm, melody, & harmony, the song's form & structure, balance of sounds & of band member roles, originality, and other things like that. For MVs I need a story, even the coolest choreography isn't quite as awesome as a well done story, but I really like to see a mix of both.
For books / movies / tv shows / video games, I have a little more structure to how I assess merit. Firstly, was it enjoyable? Then I look at prosaic grace / writing quality, world building / evolution, character development, plot development, literary quality / exegesis, and originality.
So here's my General Scale: