Haven't I Answered This One Already?

Discussion in 'Site and Forum Feedback' started by Eidorian, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #1
    déjà vu |ˌdā zh ä ˈvoō|
    noun
    a feeling of having already experienced the present situation.

    a feeling of having already experienced the present situation.

    a feeling of having already experienced the present situation...


    Posting redundancy is one of the most annoying things that any user can experience. I'm sure we've all found that we're answering the same questions about Apple Hardware that can be found on their website or OS X basics.

    There does come a point were you might just have to keep a text file full of answers. I've found myself posting back to a previous thread where I've already typed out a full answer. Quality linking back to what you've already said right?

    Formatting and creating a Guide can be tedious but it does solve a lot of questions. CanadaRAM's Intel RAM guides taking care of a good chunk of RAM questions.

    Other then linking to a previous post, Google linking, and sucking it up to make a guide what can I do? I've found myself giving up on helping someone just because I know I've answered the same question way too many times already.
     
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #2
    Well here's my take on it. First, I've posted questions that I honestly believe are unique to the site. I've done my fair share of searching and when I post I use that little button that says something like "check if already posted" but even still I'm sure somewhere down the line my question was asked albeit in a different manner resulting in the same or close to the same answer. The problem is you're dealing with many components here. They are, but not limited to the following: (in my opinion)
    • Members from many countries
    • Members who do not wish to search because their problem is clearly unique
    • Members who have a blatent disregard for all other questions because it's easier to just ask it again
    • Members who do have a unique question that did not get solved in another thread
    • Threads that are so cluttered (jailbreaking 101) with a variety of details that it is too confusing to follow
    While you may choose to ignore these posts that you consider redundant, I'm rather certain the site has done all they could for the most part to reduce redundant post. However, your idea for a guide is only as good as the individual who has an issue and sees said sticky. The reason why is consider this, you just spilled whatever liquid on your MacBook so in haste and with sincere concern your first thought is to post to MR. You open the browser, you're quite frantic and you post a thread "Spilledz beer on my MacBook!!!!!!!1!!!!one!!!!!" So people see this thread and like a car wreck we want to peak inside.

    On the other hand I've fallen victim to this example for jailbreaking my iPhone. The thread is great, the guide is nice but then I get sucked into the 60 other posts about "what if" and "if I" and get confused. In turn I am not certain my original question was answered so I simply start a new thread in hopes I will get my answer in a tidy, timely, and calm manner.

    But back to your point. If there are guides for the most redundant questions then it would indeed be easier to link back to the guides if there is a redundant thread. I think this was your point or maybe it wasn't, but either way my point was to share why I believe this happens and that I believe to be some validity in redundant threads because I can search for "hacking my iPhone" and in fact much of the information (the good information) is found under "jailbreak my iPhone". It is a language thing or just a way that I may understand one thing and not another regardless of where I hail from.

    As far as redudant posts that deserve a sticky of sorts, I believe we should start with
    • ACD to (whatever gaming console)...can it be done?
    • I spilled _______ on my _______ what do I do?
    • What does AppleCare cover?
    • If I jailbreak my iPhone/iPod Touch how can I restore it back to factory settings.
     
  3. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #3
    Imaging getting jumped by other users for telling the OP that by using the built-in thread checker they would have found the answer. It's not pretty. What's the staff policy on being a "search czar" when you do have the best of intentions?

    It is a little painful when a thread title does end up in ALL CAPS, multiple exclamation points, and a poorly spelled title. You still manage to click on the thread. :rolleyes:

    Once a thread gets too large it is a great pain to find relevant information to your situation when it's somewhere within a 1,000 posts. If it gets this bad I just Google it. That's just what I do though.

    Wow, you've covered everything there.
     
  4. saltyzoo macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #4
    I never understood why people in an online community get upset when people use the "new thread" button.

    Any criticism against not searching and laziness is countered with the same type of criticism that you can just ignore threads you aren't interested in.

    If you don't want people to ask questions, don't allow dynamic posts. Create a static website and be done with it.

    A question can be answered a thousand different ways. New members log in every day. Asking a question again will very often get a different slant of answers each time.

    My advice, get over it or create your own static pages and be happy with yourself and let the noobs ask their questions and become part of the community. Just because you've been here for awhile doesn't mean you are any more important that the guy that just signed up.

    Do you complain when a new newspaper is delivered to your doorstep every day? It has the same information in it that was in there every other day....
     
  5. Markleshark macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #5
    Basically... I totally agree with that.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #6
  7. tefleming macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Location:
    ATL
    #7
    Or you could just create a text file of a very polite suggestion that they search the forums while waiting for a substantive reply.

    Just an idea, there's no need to jump on new members who don't take the few minutes to search. (Not at all saying that Eidorian is guilty of this, but I have seen some less than polite replies to honest questions.)
     
  8. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #8
    Answering the question or posting with links to helpful posts or threads are especially good things to do.

    Also, it's perfectly OK - and, if done nicely, even more productive - to show others how to search, preferably by providing them with the terms you used and the options you set. Especially for new members, the search options aren't always easy to find or set with intuitive defaults - for example, searching by post is often far more useful than searching by thread, but the default is to search by thread.

    It is not OK, for example, to simply tell people they should have searched, or to say "not this again" or whatever. Such posts are rude and not helpful.

    As others have said, if you can't help the poster, don't post. But if you can provide them the answer and show them how to get it in the future, you've not only done the poster a service but also might help them to ask fewer questions in the future that could easily be answered via search.
     
  9. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #9
    Thanks jsw. I've often found myself typing up a post when I give up midway and close the tab since it might be the hundredth time saying the same thing.

    New users are something inherent to the message board but an older member might get tired spending their time to retyping a rather lengthy solution. It's much easier to give them a little kick to try Forum Search and Google alongside a link to what you've already said.

    I do feel a bit mean posting Google links to the answers of the questions of a new user.
     
  10. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #10
    Practice makes perfect, mate. Write out the same **** enough times and you'll end up a bloody Mac genius. ;)
     
  11. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
  12. CalBoy macrumors 604

    CalBoy

    Joined:
    May 21, 2007
    #12
    To be fair though, those were all different in nature. It wasn't the same question 3 times, it was 3 separate questions which happened to have overlapping answers.
     
  13. CRAZYBUBBA macrumors 65816

    CRAZYBUBBA

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto/Houston
  14. Teh Don Ditty macrumors G4

    Teh Don Ditty

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Location:
    Maryland
    #14
    Jeez, why don't you just give away your secret!

    Oh.


    :D
     
  15. mcarnes macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    USA! USA!
    #15
    I'm personally opposed to searching. I can't explain it. It just strikes at the core of my soul as something that is wrong.

    I also find this thread mildly offensive, like I'm being persecuted. Not everyone believes in the search function.
     
  16. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #16
    How often do you use a search engine?
     
  17. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #17
    The issue of RPS (Repetitive Post Syndrome) drives me to distraction on a daily basis. Sometimes (well, a lot) I find I just can't answer because I can't bring myself to NOT be snarky because some poor noob is asking--innocently enough, mind you-- about an issue that they can't or won't be bothered with researching, and that bugs the dickens out of me.

    The MR search tool is admittedly less than awe-inspiring, even if it was used religiously. Every time I've used it--with or without creative filtering-- I end up with 3,470 threads, of which none of them actually have anything to do with what I was looking for. Stickies become either unused, or insanely long, in which case they're unused again. Maybe a Google-powered MRWiki™?
     
  18. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #18
    I've got to agree with this.

    Even if you are searching for something you are 100% sure has been posted on MR, the results from the search tool are often very hit and miss. I was looking for a thread I could remember that was posted 12 months ago relating to Airport Extreme settings. It took me about 20 minutes to eventually find it....... very frustrating. :(
     
  19. CRAZYBUBBA macrumors 65816

    CRAZYBUBBA

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto/Houston
    #19
    I think its just the nature of searching.

    When i was in undergrad when looking for something like aboriginal rights we'd just search for "aboriginal rights"

    but you learn after a while that you have to include words like "treaty" or "sequoia" to get any real results.

    The same can be said here.
     
  20. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #20
    I usually end up using a Google search in which the query involves my MacRumors user name and some of the thread or post content.

    I found this interesting as well.
     
  21. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #21
    That's good advice....

    I was looking for "skunk airport extreme dublin"

    Using the MR search gives no results

    Using Google = 2nd result down.....Bingo :D
     
  22. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #22
    Just don't try to Google "Mad Jew +*Mac*". Over three billion results...
     
  23. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #23

    What's more, it's against my religion. However, when in Rome... It's a forum policy to try your darndest to find an answer via search before creating a new thread.
     
  24. Eidorian thread starter macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #24
    I brought this up with one of my coworkers during lunch and they made mention that their ISP's support entry system does a search of the FAQs before you REALLY submit a support request.

    Just a thought since the "Check this thread" button isn't getting much mileage.
     
  25. saltyzoo macrumors 65816

    saltyzoo

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    #25
    Really? How do you know?
     

Share This Page