Civility Please!!!

Discussion in 'Site and Forum Feedback' started by Pak^Man, Sep 4, 2008.

  1. Pak^Man macrumors regular

    Jul 28, 2008
    Columbus, OH
    [I know this does not belong here, but I think its important]:apple::apple::apple:

    Lately I have been observing increased hostility towards people asking questions on these forums, which is sad.

    I have come to love the sense of community one gets with Macs, and I’m afraid that some cranky people are turning this community into a Windows-like world full of techy snobs livings in their Moms’ basement…. Seriously people, what gives?

    I read this response today: “not again...there is a search function you know, and there are plenty of threads on this...” :eek: IMHO, the amount of energy this response took could have been used to actually answer the question. Or you what they say, if you have nothing better to say; Shut the heck up!!!

    While I am equally annoyed by the 145th question about “new macbooks soon”, I do think some people just need the help. If you feel inclined, help them, or tell them HOW to search the forums rather than just snapping back, and maybe give them some threads to look at. People have done those for me and I am very thankful.

    Somebody did have a valid response to that attitude: “Remember this is a forum, a place of discussion... not a FAQ. If People kept simply searching it would leave us with a collection of stale threads and responses”

    We have a pretty good community here…. Please lets try to keep it that way. Just my two cents… please don’t tell me this has been discussed before; I just feel it had to be said.

    Have a great day! :)
  2. hogfaninga macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2008
    Chestnut Tree Cafe
    Good post.

    It is really simple. If you don't like a threads subject, then don't open it up. Some people like to act tough on the internet. I find it funny.

    There are a lot of new people to this site and new to message boards. They will learn how to search, act, ect.. Give them some patience.

    Heck if it wasn't for new threads/posts, not many people would come here. I think that would defeat the purpose of having a message board.
  3. scienide09 macrumors 65816


    May 5, 2007
    I understand your points, and know that sometimes people can be snippy. It's unfortunate, and not a very warm welcome for new users coming here for advice, help, or whatever. I too spend time here because of the sense of community. Some users could stand to be more friendly -- civility indeed.

    You also have to understand the other point of view: long-time users have seen those same useless posts/threads thousands of times. What you mention is true, that the time taken to tell people to search could instead be used to simply provide a response. However, it's also true that the time taken to create a repeat thread to ask a repeat question could instead be used to run a quick search. The answers to most of those basic questions can be found with a quick forum search, let alone the many resources on the rest of the Net.

    There are reasons why arn and the other mods recommend the search feature, and why users are told to use it in the forum rules (which all users are asked to read before registering). One thread with a few posts takes up very little bandwidth and won't make the server work at all. Thousands of threads, many of them with hundreds of posts, require a lot more computing power, maintenance, and observation to keep the forum running both technologically and within the content parameters set by the forum rules. Lots of useless threads can affect the database, reducing overall performance of the entire site.

    The site and forums are provided to users for free, and the ads that help generate revenue are unobtrusive. Those are good reasons to respect the rules, even if they aren't strictly enforced.

    EDIT: Bizarre, I just stumbled upon the thread with the responses you quoted above. That's one of the debates has been done to DEATH on this forum and and elsewhere, and the response could have been found almost anywhere with a 2 second search.
  4. bertpalmer macrumors 6502

    Apr 12, 2007
    True - simply don't answer threads that annoy.

    Saw this on DIGG and thought it relevent to above!
  5. Apple Ink macrumors 68000

    Apple Ink

    Mar 7, 2008
    I agree. Though the forum rules do mention to search before!

    But something that irates me is the lack of CS! I mean people ask one speaker..... thats clearly mentioned on the first page of the user manual. At least have enough courtesy to read it first if not search!
  6. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    I am in agreement here. There are times when I am guilty and very much ok being guilty of being a twit around here. Frankly, if you cannot handle this in a forum then you're seriously going to hate the real world.

    I think common sense is key here, something that seems to be lacking all too often. When you start a thread it states very clearly that your title should be informative. When you start a thread it even gives you this amazingly easy search button to ensure your question hasn't been asked before. I understand there will be overlap, welcome to the internet, but coming here and telling people to be civil and leaving out the other side of the argument doesn't carry much weight.

    Being civil and having fun can indeed go hand in hand.
  7. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I think a balance is needed. I completely agree that flaming a newbie who asks a question is uncalled for. On the other hand, when someone takes the time to perform a search on the poster's question and then posts a response that contains a link to searching the forums, as well as a link to search results that address the OP's question, the OP is out of line to attack the person who offered help. I've seen too many starting repetitive threads who complain that someone doesn't spoon-feed them the answers. If you've been given a link to searching the forums, as well as links to dozens of threads on your question, the least you can do is not be too lazy to read them!
  8. mac 2005 macrumors 6502a

    mac 2005

    Apr 1, 2005
    Lately? You should try being here a few years.

    As you saw from the responses to your post, people are too eager to defend their "right" to be rude and offensive to the person on the other end of the post -- never mind the fact that they could have just left well enough alone and moved on or spent the same amount of time answering the question.

    Given that these people will continue to justify their behavior and behave poorly, I'll refer you to the Ignore tool in your control panel. I use it, and it has greatly enhanced my experience here at MacRumors.


    FWIW: In society, if someone asked you for information, you'd either say you didn't know or identify a source they could consult. You would not verbally abuse them, question their intelligence, etc.
  9. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    I agree re not answering threads that annoy (although my resolve has cracked on a few occasions.) Love the DIGG piece, nice find.

    Again, I agree. Oddly enough, it takes a bit of courage to ask for help; many people do not find it an easy thing to do, and on a forum such as this,- dedicated to the world of Mac and thus a natural place to come and pose questions on Mac matters - I feel that it is important to try and create a welcoming environment where people can feel free to ask questions. Thus, the best response, to my mind, is to try to help, or point the poster in the right direction, (or say nothing). Biting someone's head off for seeking information is an unfortunate response; it demeans the forum and doesn't aid the questioner in their quest for a solution.

    Moreover, I'd further point out that many questions from newbies (and we've all been there) are from switchers. Macs are different; everyone has to learn the basics and questions of this nature can be very basic indeed. That is no reason not to answer them.

    Now, as to the thousandth thread on whether the new MBP/MB will be unveiled the following Tuesday.....a little impatience might be in order in that instance. Passing over with averted eyes is possibly a better tactic.

    Good post, and I agree completely with it; thanks also for that useful link - I'm sure it'll have a role to play.

    To the OP, welcome to the forum, and to the world of Mac and you have made a valuable contribution to the forum with your thread.

    Cheers and good luck
  10. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    A couple of days ago I posted my opinion about answering questions that have been asked before.

    Perhaps we could manage with just two forum rules: the Golden Rule and "Civility Please!!!"
  11. icebook2002 macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2006
    Just pointing out an 'obvious' flaw in the "if you care to search" response that so readily accompanies repeated threads... If you go to the home page and use the search function then IT DOES NOT search the forums, try it and see! This is why I completely understand when someone says "I tried a search and got nothing". Perhaps putting a forum search box on the front page might actually help resolve a lot of these matters. As for me I can't be asked to search through 79 million pages of a single thread and actually am quite relieved when someone starts a new thread as often as not some, helpful, soul will condense the outcome of the other thread, yes I am lazy :D.
  12. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    That's why many of us repeatedly recommend that you use MRoogle to search the forums, since it uses the Google search engine and produces great on-target results.
  13. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    I subscribe to the "teach a man to fish" theory. That's going to help him a lot more in the long run than giving him a fish. There's no cause to be rude about it of course, but in this medium, sometimes just the suggestion that searching the forums could quickly turn up dozens of threads on a topic is seen by some as rude.
  14. icebook2002 macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2006
    I fully appreciate your point but the fact remains such suggestion only come AFTER the thread is started, in fact I don't seem to remember where the link is to mroogle on the site other than in reply posts. I still think a bit of tolerance and a search function on the main page would be good. I also get tired when threads drift off topic because honestly do you really expect a new visitor to read 367 posts over lord knows how many pages? :D
  15. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    A targeted search will take them directly to posts within a thread that specifically address their question, so they don't have to read hundreds of posts to find what they need. When a thread is posted with a question, a reply with:
    1. A link to MRoogle, so they know what search method is used, and
    2. A link to search results that are specific to their question.​
    should be sufficient to not only answer the question with not just one opinion, but many, but also give them the tool to find answers to most questions they may have in the future. "Teach a man to fish"

    First-time posters should not be harassed for posting a commonly-asked question, because they aren't aware of what's been asked before or how to search effectively. However, once they've been given the tools to find answers, there's no excuse for not taking a minute to search before posting repetitive threads. It's also better to search first for a few other reasons:
    • Rather than post a new thread and then wait for people to find it and respond over a day or two, searching gives immediate answers.
    • The most knowledgeable members may have posted the best answers in a previous thread, but those members may not visit the forum again for several days.
    • While you may get immediate answers to a new thread, they may or may not be accurate. Searching will give you access to full discussions, including answers and rebuttals to those answers by more knowledgeable posters.
    • Think of how easy it would be to find an answer to a question if there was only one thread that dealt with that question, and all the information available was posted in that one thread.
    Having said all this, it's obvious that many will still be too lazy to search before posting, so repetitive threads will continue. However, some of the "newbies" will accept the recommendation to search first, and will find many of the answers they need without starting new threads. As long as I keep getting an occasional response like "Gee, thanks! That's exactly what I needed! I didn't know I could search like that!", I'll keep offering the recommendation to search.
  16. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    With the explosion of new members over the past year or so, we old-timers probably need to grit our teeth and be a bit more patient. I try but know I don't always succeed.

    That said, posters are admonished to search for a topic before they start a new thread. How many do? I guess we'll never know. But I do have to say that often when I've done the search myself, and posted links to numerous recent threads on the very same topic, the thread carries on as if the post never appeared. Isn't that kind of rude, too? I think it is.
  17. TEG macrumors 604


    Jan 21, 2002
    Langley, Washington
    I usually remind people to search if I have answered the same question in the last 24 hours, sometimes including a link to the relevant thread, then answer the question.

    However, it is infuriating to answer the same questions over and over again. I eventually created an FAQ for the iPhone in the guides, and try to direct people there for more help.

  18. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says....I think it is a 2-way street. If you show some respect for the rules and guidelines of the forum, you are more likely to be shown some respect from the longtime members. One only needs to look at the number of ineligible marketplace threads in the wasteland from the last couple days to see that too many people can't be bothered to even look at the rules....oh yeah!
  19. r.j.s Moderator emeritus


    Mar 7, 2007
    Second that ... and add political threads as well.
  20. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Duff-Man speaks truth. Show respect, get respect.

    The same also goes for thread titles. You really can't expect many useful responses to the 32,892nd thread titled "a quick question."

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