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Get rid of "Propose as Answer"

    Question

  • I find the "Propose as Answer" feature unnecessary and confusing, and I think it should be eliminated.

    1. Its stated purpose is to encourage OP's to mark a reply as the answer, but I think it has the opposite effect. Some OP's will see the blue tick and think that the issue is taken care of, and there is no need for them to "Mark as Answer". Other OP's will mistakenly select "Propose as Answer" themselves, because they do not understand the difference between "Mark" and "Propose".

    2. Some OP's may be irritated that someone (possibly the responder) has proposed a reply as the answer, when they do not consider it to be the answer. The OP has the option to "Remove Propose as Answer". but why should they have to bother with it? In some cases this could lead to Wikipedia-like dueling between the OP and the proposer.

    3. Some responders will be irritated by having their reply proposed as answer by some third party, because they see this as making it less likely that their reply will be subsequently marked as answer by the OP (see point 1).

    4. It seems inappropriate to me that responders can propose their own reply as answer.

    For me this feature adds nothing but confusion, and is counterproductive for its stated purpose.

    If the feature is not removed I would suggest that:

    1. Propose as Answer should not be available to the OP. This availability is quite pointless, IMHO.

    2. It should not be possible for a responder to propose his own reply as answer.


    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Wednesday, June 11, 2008 2:37 PM

All replies

  • davewilk said:

    I find the "Propose as Answer" feature unnecessary and confusing, and I think it should be eliminated.

    1. Its stated purpose is to encourage OP's to mark a reply as the answer, but I think it has the opposite effect. Some OP's will see the blue tick and think that the issue is taken care of, and there is no need for them to "Mark as Answer". Other OP's will mistakenly select "Propose as Answer" themselves, because they do not understand the difference between "Mark" and "Propose"


    The purpose of the proposed answer is to get more people involved in contributing towards getting answers and make it easier for answerers. If this is not happening we should certainly address it. The goal is to enable anyone the ability to evaluate and suggest/propose that a reply is an answer. Then true answerers (OPs, answerers and moderators) can apply filters to quickly evaluate and validate/confirm these proposals.

    davewilk said:

    If the feature is not removed I would suggest that:

    1. Propose as Answer should not be available to the OP. This availability is quite pointless, IMHO.

    2. It should not be possible for a responder to propose his own reply as answer.


    Thanks for the suggestions, David. I appreciate you pointing out these issues and especially offering proposed solutions. In addition to your suggestions we are looking into making some visual changes to further the distinction between a proposed answer and a real answer.

    Again, thanks for your help in identifying these issues.
    Brent Serbus STO Forums Program Manager
    • Edited by Brent Serbus Thursday, June 12, 2008 8:48 PM typo
    • Marked as answer by davewilk Friday, June 13, 2008 4:14 AM
    • Unmarked as answer by davewilk Thursday, June 19, 2008 12:42 PM
    Thursday, June 12, 2008 8:45 PM
  • Brent:

    Thanks for the detailed reply.

    Yes, if you want to keep this feature, changing the icon to something like a combined question mark/check would be an improvement.

    But, really, for me the whole feature has no benefit. Just a source of confusion.


    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    • Edited by davewilk Friday, June 13, 2008 1:13 PM Added note on icon
    Friday, June 13, 2008 4:14 AM
  • Brent:

    I have unmarked your post as answer, because I feel so strongly about the OP being able to select Propose as answer. I see this is unchanged in the forum update today.

    For an example of where the OP got it wrong, see the thread

    http://forums.msdn.microsoft.com/en-US/vclanguage/thread/074307b8-a0d9-440f-8617-a7fe509fb718

    But there are many others.

    This is (still) the FAQ for Propose as answer:

    How do I propose a reply as an answer?
    You can propose a reply to a post as an answer even if you are not signed in to the Forums. This will help other users to decide if they want to mark that reply as an answer. To do this, you need to click Propose as Answer next to the reply on the My Threads page.

    As I noted before, it is not (and indeed should not, IMHO) be possible to Propose as answer if you are not logged on.

    Also, when it says "This will help other users to decide if they want to mark that reply as an answer." the only possible such other user is the OP (or moderator I suppose), so providing Propose as answer to the OP is quite pointless. I would say that virtually 100% of uses of Propose as answer by the OP are an error based on misunderstanding.


    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Thursday, June 19, 2008 1:05 PM
  • Brent (or anybody still following this thread):

    For another example of user confusion on this issue, see

    http://forums.msdn.microsoft.com/en-US/vcgeneral/thread/4ed9c8f8-a62c-49af-a022-e93b82e63e6e



    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, June 23, 2008 3:11 PM
  • Maybe you can prompt for a reason for proposing as answer?

    Although it would simply be a matter of reading the post to discern this, adding a reason would further elaborate the proposal IMO.
    • Proposed as answer by Brian Borg Friday, August 7, 2009 11:28 PM
    Thursday, June 26, 2008 1:57 PM
  • David,

    Again, thanks for the feedback. After giving this more thought, this what we plan to do:

    Keep proposed answer for now
    Update the icon visual treatment so it is much more distinct from Answer
    Remove the ability for the OP to have the option to propose an answer in their question threads
    Update the incorrect information in the help file, it is inaccurate

    We plan to get these updates live as soon as we can. I hope this gets us closer into honoring the intention of the feature while also minimizing confusion around it.

    Let me know what you think!
    Brent Serbus STO Forums Program Manager
    Wednesday, July 2, 2008 5:27 AM
  • Brent:

    Thanks! What you suggest would definitely be an improvement.

    But what I really think is outlined in the thread People don't vote .

    Basically, get rid of Propose As answer and Vote (as currently implemented) and replace with a new item "Mark as helpful" or "Vote as helpful" which is grouped with Mark as answer (rather than with Reply, Quote, Edit).

    Right now have four actions

    1. Vote as helpful
    2. Vote as unhelpful
    3. Vote as abusive
    4. Propose as answer

    The first 3 are virtually unused as far as I can tell, and the last three are useless, IMHO. So I say, just keep the first one, and make it a "first class citizen".

    I mean, really, doesn't this make sense?


    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Wednesday, July 2, 2008 11:47 AM
  • Question:

    How can we remove a "proposed as answer" if we mistakenly clicked it on the wrong post?
    This would be helpful ... i do not propose a certain post as a plausible answer, yet I clicked it, and now cannot seem to remove it ...

    Cheers
    Tuesday, August 4, 2009 3:35 AM
  • The forum can have "proposed as answer" option but it should be disable or invisible to anyone that post a reply to thread, this will provide check and balance because some people are abusing that option by propose everyone of their posts as answer including replies that are not related to the OP question.  And sometimes, moderator will just marked any post "proposed as answer" as the solution to the problem without check if the post is truly the answer.

    kaymaf 


    I hope this helps, if that is what you want, just mark it as answer so that we can move on
    Saturday, August 8, 2009 6:38 PM
  • The forum can have "proposed as answer" option but it should be disable or invisible to anyone that post a reply to thread, this will provide check and balance because some people are abusing that option by propose everyone of their posts as answer including replies that are not related to the OP question.  And sometimes, moderator will just marked any post "proposed as answer" as the solution to the problem without check if the post is truly the answer.

    If you mean that you should not be able to propose your own post as answer, then this is something that many of us have been saying for a long time: Get Rid of Self-Propose .

    Personally I still favor getting rid of Propose as Answer altogether. Voting a reply as helpful can perform the same function of alerting moderators  and questioners to potential answers, and it gives credit to the responder.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Sunday, August 9, 2009 11:15 AM

  • ...many of us have been saying for a long time: Get Rid of Self-Propose



    Here is a thread of great philosophic merit that should have been posed as a comment instead of a question:   I can't download windows 7

    Notice it attracted 9 self-proposed answers, of which 7 were from the one-and-same individual.  The other 2 were from another.


    The only redeeming thing is there is no green checkmark.   

    Sunday, August 9, 2009 12:26 PM


  • I also question the value of having a Report As Abusive tag.


    Sunday, August 9, 2009 1:40 PM


  • > I also question the value of having a Report As Abusive tag.

    While your posts sometime (in other threads) cry out for this tag, so I would like to keep it, I don't see why anyone could possibly object to your post here and mark it as abusive. The thread you point to *does* contain as you say a mass of self-proposed answers with one person seemingly proposing every single post he makes and is therefore completely on-topic here.

    Sunday, August 9, 2009 3:08 PM

  • Thank you Mike.  Yes, I think I am misunderstood alot, including here.  (The red-box).


    Maybe if providing a reason was mandatory, the red-box usage would be more constructive on both the sending and receiving ends.

    Sunday, August 9, 2009 3:39 PM
  • You have been banned, you are no longer entitled to post to the Microsoft forums.  Circumventing the ban by hacking your user name is in itself a gross violation of forum policy.  Moderators should delete any of your posts, even if they are accidentally on topic.

    Hans Passant.
    Sunday, August 9, 2009 5:11 PM

  • You have been banned, you are no longer entitled to post to the Microsoft forums.  Circumventing the ban by hacking your user name is in itself a gross violation of forum policy.  Moderators should delete any of your posts, even if they are accidentally on topic.

    Hans Passant.


    Hans, kindly review your reply.  That is exactly the kind of attitude and baiting I objected to, which resulted in my getting banned.  "Accidentally on topic".  That is a trolling remark if there ever has been one.  I should red-box you.

    Regarding "hacking" my user name, I explained already  (and you are certainly aware)  I have appended unicode blanks so it will remain consistent with my earlier profile.  No, I will not sneak into this forum under another alias.  To call that a hack is just a smear to suggest I'm a criminal.  In simple words, it's a sleazy lie.  Perhaps that somehow makes you feel justified in your conduct here?  It shouldn't.  You should be ashamed of your sarcastic self.

    So now I've bitten your bait.  Ban me.  Again.

    Sunday, August 9, 2009 5:53 PM