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Moderators marking their replies as answers RRS feed

  • Question

  • Not sure if this is the right forum for this question and I hope my concern does not hurt any moderators.

    I have seen few instances where there was a question asked and few people reply to that post and community moderator also reply's to that post. Later moderator comes back and marks only his/her reply as answer(even though no one proposes it as an answer) and posts another message to unmark if it was not the answer and as the person who asked the question has not been checking on the forum, mostly the credit for the answer goes to the moderator although, it may not be the answer. The worst part is the moderator does not mark others post as answer even if it makes sense as the answer for the question asked.

    There should be some restriction where in a moderator should not be allowed to mark their own reply as answer unless the reply has been proposed as an answer by some others. There should not be a problem where one moderator marking a reply as answer made by another moderator.

    Hope this makes sense.

    Tuesday, March 26, 2013 5:35 PM

Answers

  • Not a bad suggestion. I would only comment that moderating is not easy, and it can be difficult to determine which is the best reply. The preferred outcome should always be that the asker mark the answer, but often they do not. Moderators are encouraged to not leave threads open with no answer. The recommendation I have seen for moderators is to first mark proposed answer, then wait 7 days, then if no further activity, mark the answer. That adds to the effort. I personally avoid marking my own replies as answer, but I do mark my replies as proposed answers.

    A possible result of my policy: when I find a thread where I am expert/knowledgable, I answer. From then on I can only mark someone elses reply in the thread as answer (if I follow my policy not to mark my own), or hope someone marks mine. That leaves me marking answers in threads where I am not expert. If I can test a solution, fine, but otherwise I may need to do research that isn't worth the time (unless the issue interests me). To be honest, I often depend on the reputation of the person providing the reply. After awhile, I know who is expert in what areas. Otherwise, I would need to guess or leave many threads without answers.


    Richard Mueller - MVP Directory Services

    Well Said Richard. Couldn't agree more on this.

    V. Keerthi Deep, 

    I also Moderate few server forums and at times, I will be in ambiguity whether or not to mark my own reply as answer (Even though I am sure that, it's an answer).

    However, there are different contexts in Marking Answers

    Only a Moderator has replied on the thread and no one else !  - Most of the times, no one proposes the moderators reply as an answer and OP doesn't bother even to reply if the suggestion was helpful or not, in such cases, it's up to moderators discretion whether or not to mark his own reply as an answer.  Personally, I leave it as un-answered for at least few days or a week before proposing or marking my reply as answer or wait for other Moderator to Mark my reply as answer.

    There are multiple replies on the thread including moderator/s - If OP doesn't mark any reply as an answer or abandon the thread for long time, here I agree that, moderator marking his/her reply as answer and ignoring other replies is a wrong thing. Please note that, Not all moderators would that however, there are exceptions (Nobody is perfect ;-)).

    A lot of stuff has been already discussed about this aspect in below mentioned  thread, please have a look.

    Self-Marked Answers - Please Stop


    Regards, Santosh

    I do not represent the organisation I work for, all the opinions expressed here are my own.

    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees and confers no rights.

    Whenever you see a helpful reply, click on Alternate Text Vote As Helpful & click on Alternate Text Mark As Answer if a post answers your question.


    Interview with a Wiki Ninja: Santosh Bhandarkar, Windows Server and Directory Service Expert

    Wednesday, April 3, 2013 5:26 AM

All replies

  • Not a bad suggestion. I would only comment that moderating is not easy, and it can be difficult to determine which is the best reply. The preferred outcome should always be that the asker mark the answer, but often they do not. Moderators are encouraged to not leave threads open with no answer. The recommendation I have seen for moderators is to first mark proposed answer, then wait 7 days, then if no further activity, mark the answer. That adds to the effort. I personally avoid marking my own replies as answer, but I do mark my replies as proposed answers.

    A possible result of my policy: when I find a thread where I am expert/knowledgable, I answer. From then on I can only mark someone elses reply in the thread as answer (if I follow my policy not to mark my own), or hope someone marks mine. That leaves me marking answers in threads where I am not expert. If I can test a solution, fine, but otherwise I may need to do research that isn't worth the time (unless the issue interests me). To be honest, I often depend on the reputation of the person providing the reply. After awhile, I know who is expert in what areas. Otherwise, I would need to guess or leave many threads without answers.


    Richard Mueller - MVP Directory Services

    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 2:47 AM
  • "Moderators are encouraged to not leave threads open with no answer."

    I still do not understand, why then there are some very old threads in the back of every forum. Why did they not answer it or delete it?


    The following is my signature:

    Powershell Programmer & Advanced Lua Programmer

    Location: Switzerland

    Beside that, whenever you see a reply, you think is helpful, click "Vote As Helpful"! And whenever you see a reply being an answer to the main question of the thread, click "Mark As Answer" (if you opened the thread).

    I published the URL's for the icons in my signature.

    Please contact me, before reporting me, thank you.

    [string](0..21|%{[char][int]([int]("{0:d}" -f 0x28)+('577076797174-87661607769657424-8687168065964').substring(($_*2),2))})-replace' '

    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 7:28 AM
  • Sometimes some questions simply have noone know the answer, and that's a valid result.

    Take troubleshooting threads for example, sometime the problem simply not solved, so not marking answer is appropiate. The steps listed in the post to determine the problem could be helpful to other people, so worth to be retained.

    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 7:51 AM
  • What about threads, where there's only the question and no reply?

    The following is my signature:

    Powershell Programmer & Advanced Lua Programmer

    Location: Switzerland

    Beside that, whenever you see a reply, you think is helpful, click "Vote As Helpful"! And whenever you see a reply being an answer to the main question of the thread, click "Mark As Answer" (if you opened the thread).

    I published the URL's for the icons in my signature.

    Please contact me, before reporting me, thank you.

    [string](0..21|%{[char][int]([int]("{0:d}" -f 0x28)+('577076797174-87661607769657424-8687168065964').substring(($_*2),2))})-replace' '

    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 8:23 AM
  • Hi Richard,

    Thank you for the reply. I totally agree that job of moderator is not easy and I appreciate all the efforts of the moderator community.

    Yes, I think the limitation at this point is, others cannot mark a reply as a proposed answer, once it has been proposed as an answer by any one person. Allowing multiple people to propose same reply as answer should help here to understand, if others also agree to a particular reply as a solution for the question asked.

    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 2:35 PM
  • I interpret the "Vote As Helpful" button as also meaning "I agree". If the reply is already marked as a proposed answer, that might be the best another person can do.


    Richard Mueller - MVP Directory Services

    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 5:00 PM
  • But the Vote as helpful button gives points, but the person who is marking proposing it as answer is aware that the answer is the correct one, but  is not helpful for him though, so there is no reason to mark as helpful. It will become misuse of vote as helpful then
    Wednesday, March 27, 2013 5:30 PM
  • Here is a strange case. Not only moderator immediately marked his own response (BTW, I have no idea what does it say), but he also locked the thread. I checked and noticed another locked thread in this forum which is answered. Does he lock all answered threads?

    http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/sqlserveres/thread/7b3a24da-94b4-4fd6-a1e3-12e4c4fff55c


    For every expert, there is an equal and opposite expert. - Becker's Law


    My blog


    Thursday, March 28, 2013 12:53 PM
    Moderator
  • There should be some restriction where in a moderator should not be allowed to mark their own reply as answer unless the reply has been proposed as an answer by some others. There should not be a problem where one moderator marking a reply as answer made by another moderator.

    Hope this makes sense.

    Yes and no. Most moderators are not MS employees, just volunteers. So there is a limit how much time they can dedicate to public service on the forums.

    If a thread is abandoned, moderators/answerers have to bring it to some kind of  closure, frequently not an easy task.


    Kalman Toth Database & OLAP Architect sqlusa.com
    New Book / Kindle: Pass SQL Exam 70-461 & Job Interview: Programming SQL Server 2012


    Tuesday, April 2, 2013 5:25 PM
  • Not a bad suggestion. I would only comment that moderating is not easy, and it can be difficult to determine which is the best reply. The preferred outcome should always be that the asker mark the answer, but often they do not. Moderators are encouraged to not leave threads open with no answer. The recommendation I have seen for moderators is to first mark proposed answer, then wait 7 days, then if no further activity, mark the answer. That adds to the effort. I personally avoid marking my own replies as answer, but I do mark my replies as proposed answers.

    A possible result of my policy: when I find a thread where I am expert/knowledgable, I answer. From then on I can only mark someone elses reply in the thread as answer (if I follow my policy not to mark my own), or hope someone marks mine. That leaves me marking answers in threads where I am not expert. If I can test a solution, fine, but otherwise I may need to do research that isn't worth the time (unless the issue interests me). To be honest, I often depend on the reputation of the person providing the reply. After awhile, I know who is expert in what areas. Otherwise, I would need to guess or leave many threads without answers.


    Richard Mueller - MVP Directory Services

    Well Said Richard. Couldn't agree more on this.

    V. Keerthi Deep, 

    I also Moderate few server forums and at times, I will be in ambiguity whether or not to mark my own reply as answer (Even though I am sure that, it's an answer).

    However, there are different contexts in Marking Answers

    Only a Moderator has replied on the thread and no one else !  - Most of the times, no one proposes the moderators reply as an answer and OP doesn't bother even to reply if the suggestion was helpful or not, in such cases, it's up to moderators discretion whether or not to mark his own reply as an answer.  Personally, I leave it as un-answered for at least few days or a week before proposing or marking my reply as answer or wait for other Moderator to Mark my reply as answer.

    There are multiple replies on the thread including moderator/s - If OP doesn't mark any reply as an answer or abandon the thread for long time, here I agree that, moderator marking his/her reply as answer and ignoring other replies is a wrong thing. Please note that, Not all moderators would that however, there are exceptions (Nobody is perfect ;-)).

    A lot of stuff has been already discussed about this aspect in below mentioned  thread, please have a look.

    Self-Marked Answers - Please Stop


    Regards, Santosh

    I do not represent the organisation I work for, all the opinions expressed here are my own.

    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees and confers no rights.

    Whenever you see a helpful reply, click on Alternate Text Vote As Helpful & click on Alternate Text Mark As Answer if a post answers your question.


    Interview with a Wiki Ninja: Santosh Bhandarkar, Windows Server and Directory Service Expert

    Wednesday, April 3, 2013 5:26 AM
  • At one time I was self-marking because I've seen other moderators do it. Since I was instructed by MS staff not to do it, I stopped.

    Kalman Toth Database & OLAP Architect sqlusa.com
    New Book / Kindle: Pass SQL Exam 70-461 & Job Interview: Programming SQL Server 2012

    Wednesday, April 3, 2013 7:55 AM