Forum etiquettes

General discussion about PLUC and Linux in Pakistan.

Forum etiquettes

Postby fawad » Mon Sep 22, 2003 8:04 pm

Guys, this is an important topic and I'd really appreciate feedback on it.

Lately, we've gotten a wave of new forum users. While that is a good thing, we've also run into a couple of problems because of that. Here's the list from what I've observed, along with my take on the problems in italics

  • Lots of redundant posts: Questions that have been asked a lot of times before are asked again. Instead of wasting time and energy by entering the answer, we should be pointing out to the poster that the question has already been answered, link to the original post, and advise that they search the forum posts before starting a new thread
  • n-plicate posts: This has only happened in the last few weeks, but has happened 4 times. A poster, in an attempt to get more attention to his question, asks the same question in every darn forum on the site. Only reply in one of the posts. I'll come in and delete the duplicates with the lesser number of replies. Currently phpbb doesn't have a mechanism for moving comments between threads.
  • wrong forum: Questions are posted directly into the LinuxPakistan->General forum without even thinking what the purpose of that forum is.Sometimes I move posts around into their correct place. But most threads of this nature stay where they are (maybe we need to recruit more moderators.
  • wrong thread: People post their questions right in the middle of a running thread about something completely different. An extreme example would be a question a person posted in a job posting thread! For the afore mentioned question, I had to delete the rogue post and the replies to that. Have no mechanism for forking a thread into multiple threads.
  • me-too posts: A lot of threads recently have had people posting replies that have absolutely no bearing on the topic of the thread. This may or may not be annoying to people depending on their annoyance threshold. I have no idea what to do with such posts. I really hate over-moderation.
  • The too-many questions posts: Several threads have had people asking more than 1-2 questions at once. Problem with such questions is that the thread gets way too noisy. One person replies to one thing he knows about, someone else posts about the other question. While going through the thread, it looks like we're looking at an IRC chat room than a professional forum. No comments on this one either.


Hope we can discuss these and other problems here to bring some sanity to the forums.

Regards
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My Feedback.

Postby s7r1k3r » Mon Sep 22, 2003 11:57 pm

Assalam-O-Alaekum!

Here is what I think.

1. Redundant Posts. Shouldn't be servere on Redundant Posts because it is actally a little too difficult to assume that every one will search all the posts before asking a question. Also, many time a solution is given inside (way deep inside) a thread and one can't easily find it. Any way, it would be good to just point the person to the appropriate post.

2. # n-plicate posts. This should definitely not happen.

3. # wrong forum: Yes, please people just ask the questions in the appropraite forum. This gives new comers a better chance to search the forum for their problems before asking a question. No use posting in general section when your problem is specific to a particular subject like say programming. If you take care of this, I think that it would decrease Redundant Posts.

4. # wrong thread: Yes, should definitely start a new thread for a new question. It helps CATAGORIZING knowledge and should also result in less redundant posts.

5. # me-too posts: Mix response. If there is somekind of voting or etc going on then fine, else should avoid it. By the way, still should use a poll question for voting kind of issues.

6. # The too-many questions posts: Yes, should definitely stick to one question per thread for the reasons stated above.

Also, I have another suggession. Its about the ranking due to extra posts. I believe that this is causing a few problems too because at times there are cases when people are posting just to increase their ranking. I hope we can fix that. Infact, I think that we should take a vote on whether their should be ranking or not. Of course, their are cases where this ranking keeps interest in the forum and keeps it active.
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Postby mrkkhattak » Tue Sep 23, 2003 12:35 pm

Assalamualaikum,

I agree with your points. I too have seen that ppl post in the wrong forum, I found it very annoying :-( but from now on, will move it or delete it.

I think from now on, I should delete the posts which doesn't address the problem exactly (I mean an offtopic reply to a post) ... i.e
http://www.linuxpakistan.net/forum2x/vi ... .php?t=713 (see the last reply pls)

What do you say ?

I will be waiting for more suggestion, especially regarding deleting poclicies.

Regards,

-Meraj
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Re: Forum etiquettes

Postby zsindhu » Tue Sep 23, 2003 7:22 pm

Howdy guys!

fawad wrote:Guys, this is an important topic and I'd really appreciate feedback on it.

Lately, we've gotten a wave of new forum users. While that is a good thing, we've also run into a couple of problems because of that. Here's the list from what I've observed, along with my take on the problems in italics

  • Lots of redundant posts: Questions that have been asked a lot of times before are asked again. Instead of wasting time and energy by entering the answer, we should be pointing out to the poster that the question has already been answered, link to the original post, and advise that they search the forum posts before starting a new thread


A common problem in almost every forum that exists. One can only hope that the users learn the use of "search" fast enough. All, IMHO, we can do is try and educate.

  • n-plicate posts: This has only happened in the last few weeks, but has happened 4 times. A poster, in an attempt to get more attention to his question, asks the same question in every darn forum on the site. Only reply in one of the posts. I'll come in and delete the duplicates with the lesser number of replies. Currently phpbb doesn't have a mechanism for moving comments between threads.


  • This should not be allowed, period. All such posts (including the original) should be deleted/edited and the user informed.

    As far as moving comments is concerned, I think "Invision Board" lets you do that and from personal experience, I know it's WAY better than PHPBB :)

    • wrong forum: Questions are posted directly into the LinuxPakistan->General forum without even thinking what the purpose of that forum is.Sometimes I move posts around into their correct place. But most threads of this nature stay where they are (maybe we need to recruit more moderators.


    The mods would have to work over-time to handle this issue. The posts should merely be deleted and shadows left in the forums to which they were posted. Deleting/editing would only serve to alienate the users in such cases.

    Recruiting? :idea: May I volunteer?

    • wrong thread: People post their questions right in the middle of a running thread about something completely different. An extreme example would be a question a person posted in a job posting thread! For the afore mentioned question, I had to delete the rogue post and the replies to that. Have no mechanism for forking a thread into multiple threads.


    I *think* Invision could be the answer to that. However, all such posts should be edited and not deleted. Edited by a mod to let the user know that he posted in an un-appropriate thread.

    • me-too posts: A lot of threads recently have had people posting replies that have absolutely no bearing on the topic of the thread. This may or may not be annoying to people depending on their annoyance threshold. I have no idea what to do with such posts. I really hate over-moderation.


    No idea? ME TOO! 8)

    Seriously though, one cannot do anything about such posts. Since the inception of mailing lists/discussion forums, "me-too" posts have been a norm. We can only hope to let people know that it's something un-desireable. Moderating such posts would, indeed, be overkill.

    • The too-many questions posts: Several threads have had people asking more than 1-2 questions at once. Problem with such questions is that the thread gets way too noisy. One person replies to one thing he knows about, someone else posts about the other question. While going through the thread, it looks like we're looking at an IRC chat room than a professional forum. No comments on this one either.


    That too can only improve with time. One should make it a point to point (ugh?) such things out to users.

    Also, I strongly feel that some guidelines be chalked out for the forums and posted (sticky) in all categories.

    Oh, and how about a "lobby" for people like myself to hang-out in? :)
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    Postby Faraz.Fazil » Wed Sep 24, 2003 4:05 am

    Thanx for posting this fawad.

    A step in the right direction.
    I hope the users will follow these rules.

    AS for the Me too posts issue, i would like to add:

    ========================

    Some members do spend loads of time helping others, they make quality threads and have got good post counts as well......

    but there are some members who just increase their post count by making crappy/ unneccessary posts just to increase their post count.Their posts contain no revelant info . just messages like good info, Mention not, HI, yes it can be done etc etc or contains text copied from other user's posts, unlike some users who really spend loads of time and energy helping others and making relevant posts.

    So users should also make sure they dont make useless/non relevant posts just to increase their post counts hehe.
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    Re: Forum etiquettes

    Postby mahin » Wed Sep 24, 2003 3:58 pm

    zsindhu wrote:Howdy guys!
    <snip>
    Recruiting? :idea: May I volunteer?
    <snip>

    That too can only improve with time. One should make it a point to point (ugh?) such things out to users.

    Also, I strongly feel that some guidelines be chalked out for the forums and posted (sticky) in all categories.

    Oh, and how about a "lobby" for people like myself to hang-out in? :)


    Agree! Now why you need a "lobby" to hang-out ? :) Then we will need another volunteer to fetch you from lobby :)
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    Postby farhanksa » Wed Sep 24, 2003 9:08 pm

    aoa

    well i request u all that...........pls be friendly .and be kool........wt r here to guide the ppl not to create issues which r not good... althoug we all must follow the rules and regulations for posting........

    take care..salam
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    Re:

    Postby LinuxFreaK » Wed Sep 24, 2003 11:06 pm

    Dear All PLUCian's
    Salam,

    I agree with farhanksa.

    Best Regards.
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    Postby fawad » Fri Sep 26, 2003 8:10 pm

    Guys, I've added a couple of new moderators to (hopefully) bring sanity to the forums. Hope we can make the forums a better place to discuss stuff.

    P.S.: zsindhu, linuxpakistan.net Forum Index -> General is the 'hangout' forum. Consider this thread an invitation card :)
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    Postby zsindhu » Tue Sep 30, 2003 5:47 pm

    fawad wrote:P.S.: zsindhu, linuxpakistan.net Forum Index -> General is the 'hangout' forum. Consider this thread an invitation card :)


    woohoo! 8)
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