Marking own response as proposed answer prohibited. RRS feed

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  • I suggest that the poster of a response be prevented from marking his own response as a proposed answer.  Other viewers of the thread who feel that a response answers the original posters question should be allowed to mark a response as a proposed answer.
    Thursday, December 11, 2008 11:24 PM

All replies

  • Your proposal is obviously correct, and has been suggested by many people. Even better, get rid of Propose as Answer altogether.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Friday, December 12, 2008 3:56 AM
  • I don't agree. I ever hoped it can help mods a lot to prepare them way through long threads.
    Posting you abusive right now, and all of your posts!
    Friday, December 12, 2008 2:56 PM
  • It can help moderators go through long threads if **other people** than the poster of them can mark posts as "Proposed as Answer" so I disagree with Dave on the total removal of the possibility of "Proposed as Answer".

    But it doesn't help Moderators if people can mark *their own post* with Proposed as Answer because typically they apply a lower standard to their own posts than do people who are marking other people's posts.  There I agree with the original poster and Dave.

    So whereas I as Moderator usually find it useful when other people have Proposed an Answer, I find it a nuisance when half the posts that are marked as Proposed as Answer are marked by the poster themselves. In fact I very often then remove that "Propose as Answer".

    Removing the option for a poster to mark their own post would make checking Proposed as Answer posts as a Moderator much easier and faster. 
    Friday, December 12, 2008 3:28 PM
  • I agree. But it is quite the way as Mark as Answer works. I am mostly proposing my own posts only if it does give some more sense, or when it is in pair with some other answerer. Mostly I am proposing mine only in "dead" threads, or where noone else did contributed, and solution is recognised obvious. I was refering to Marking as Answer, because plus minus every newbie is marking as answer in very literal way, so that he trace final solution with green :-). But I am not really against removal of proposition of own post as answer. For this option it could be great to allow "own proposals" only to five star arrs, or whatever :)
    Posting you abusive right now, and all of your posts!
    Friday, December 12, 2008 5:24 PM
  • Mike:

    A helpful vote would serve the same purpose for the moderators, with the added benefit of giving credit to the answerer. We really do not need two separate concepts here.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Friday, December 12, 2008 7:36 PM
  • Probably all problems given rise from greened post window. If there was small green pipe with x N, as for helpful is, it could solve a thing ;)
    Posting you abusive right now, and all of your posts!
    Saturday, December 13, 2008 11:49 PM
  • I think I know what's going on here, I'll try to keep it short since it is based on observation, not facts.  There's a internal report circulated by DevDiv that shows MSDN forums performance.  Lots of eyes see it.  The numbers are based on a simple measurement: the percentage of question type threads that are marked answered.  Already back at the old forums, a number of measures were put into place to make this report look better.  The Chinese techs, the Answerer role and changing a dead thread from question to discussion for example.  The Propose As Answer feature was high on the wish list but couldn't be done due to the software collapse.

    Zipping forward, the dev team modified the new forum code to prevent an answerer from clicking Propose.  That was however short-lived, looked to me that somebody overrode that decision.  Given the politics behind the feature, I fear this is something we need to live with, despite the large amount of friction it creates.

    The best fix I found around this is to call upon a chronic Propose clicker to stop the habit, pointing out that s/he's depriving the OP of answers and that everybody that posts to a thread intends to do so because they think they have an answer.  A response like "but, it allows me" is hard to counter.  Timing is crucial, pick a thread where the proposed answer is clearly not the correct one.  That has worked well.

    Hans Passant.
    Sunday, December 14, 2008 6:37 PM
  • Naive as I am, I see value in Proposed Answer.  If I feel that a responder has answered the OP's question, marking that response as a Proposed Answer makes sense to me rather than adding a response with essentailly the same content.  Removing Proposed Answer as an alert trigger would help.
    Sunday, December 14, 2008 9:58 PM
  • John:

    If you see that a question has been (in your opinion) answered correctly, then just move on. There are plenty of questions that have not been answered, or have been answered incorrectly.

    The only possible merit of propose as answer is to do the moderators job for them. For me, this nowhere near compensates for its destructive effects:

    (a) discourages OP's from Marking as answer

    (b) proposing incorrect answers discourages subsequent correct answers

    (c) detracts from use of mark as helpful (a more useful feature by far)

    Personally, I *never* use the propose feature, and I would prefer that others do not propose my posts as answer.

    But, above all,  self-propose is just plain crazy, and mega-annoying.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, December 15, 2008 2:01 PM
  • :) there is plenty of cases where I could demonstrate many of "side meanings" of proposal as answers (by owner). Mostly I propose my own responses as answer in much automatic manner - simply there is long thread which clears perfectly meaning and thread-sense of particular posts. So I re read whole thread and by read I mark particular informations and good samples as answer. Sometimes I use proposal of own to short-circuit questioner's thoughts and doubts and move to right solution - it can do lot of work to "push" him this way (mostly when there is five confusing answerers before you, and you are PRETTY SURE that you see whole problem, and also understand EVERY confusion of particular answerer. This understanding is good point to validate corectness of your own-proposal. There is at least five similar usages of own-proposal I met and used. Not talking about joky threads, where own-proposal is only way to finish torment...
    Posting you abusive right now, and all of your posts!
    Friday, December 26, 2008 5:45 AM
  •  >The numbers are based on a simple measurement: the percentage of question type threads that are marked answered. 

    > Zipping forward, the dev team modified the new forum code to prevent an answerer from clicking Propose.  That was however short-lived, looked to me that somebody overrode that decision. 

    You are probably on track with your thoughts on the politics of this. I once visited with some others the support organisation of a software company that shall be nameless here. I worked at the time for a company that had signed up for their (paid-for) additional support service and it had always irritated me that the first reply to a question came very quickly but contained nothing on the question itself but merely a confirmation (not an automatic confirmation by the way) that they had received the question. I was also annoyed that virtually every mail from them asked me if they could now close the case.

    All became clear when the manager of the support team showed us the statistics that his manager judged him on.

    Yes, you've guessed, there were two things

    - time interval before replying

    - percentage of cases closed

    He got quite irritated and suddenly discovered a meeting he had to attend when I said that what his customers were in fact interested in was getting an answer to their problem....
    Friday, December 26, 2008 9:28 AM
  • I'm resurrecting this thread because I'm tired of seeing the same users mark their own bad answers as potential solutions.

    In fact, I would like to take this suggestion a step further.

    I think there should be a penalty for anyone who marked a post as a potential answer if that post was not eventually selected as the answer.  This would help curb the excessive amount of marking one's own posts as potential answers or gaming the forums by having multiple accounts; one to answer with and one to mark the original account's posts as potential answers/helpful.

    Needed to vent,


    John Eisbrener - http://dbaeyes.com/
    Tuesday, October 25, 2011 7:33 PM
  • I don't think it should be that far. You (or moderator in this forum) can post a message to the user explaining how the system works.

    There was a user in T-SQL forum who proposed his own responses because he was new. A moderator explained how this works and he immediately understood and had been very helpful. However, soon after he got MCC award he practically stopped answering - not sure what is the reason, most likely not enough time.

    BTW, there is one MVP in that forum who also constantly proposes his answers. Most likely he is also relatively new.

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

    My blog

    • Edited by Naomi N Tuesday, October 25, 2011 8:19 PM
    Tuesday, October 25, 2011 8:17 PM
  • As a moderator my thinking is different. This task is time consuming and largely unrewarded. The forum I moderate (Scripting) covers many technologies, so none of the regulars is expert in every situation. Many of the threads get to be 30+ replies and the questioner often never marks an answer. When I have been the primary one involved in the thread and there has been no further activity after several days, I might mark one of my replies as the proposed answer. As far as I know I get no credit/points for this, but it flags to the other moderators the reply I feel is the best answer. I never mark my own reply as the answer. I mark mine as the proposed answer because I hope other moderators (or even regulars that are not moderators) will do the same for me. Too often I spend half an hour reading through an old thread about a subject I know little, and then don't know which reply should be the answer. I get to know the regulars in the forum, and if one of them marks their reply a proposed answer, I suspect that they, like me, do not want to mark it as the answer (or they can't because they are not a moderator). Unless I know otherwise, I will mark this as the answer. The person that asked can always unmark it if they disagree.

    Always, the hope is that the person that asked will mark the answer. Too often this does not happen.


    Richard Mueller - MVP Directory Services
    Tuesday, October 25, 2011 9:26 PM
  • Obviously the contingent staff controls this aspect of the forums and they encourage the proposing and marking of answers.  It probably has something to do with ratings and compensation.  The new face of the forums as seen by the Windows Forms General forum blurs the distinction of proposed answers and  answers.  The symbol is the same, but the answered symbol is more green.
    Wednesday, October 26, 2011 6:36 PM
  • I think in most cases proposing your own post as the answer isn't a good practice.  It's kind of like doing your own code review, it kind of defeats the purpose.  

    However, the one case I think it's okay to propose your own post as the answer is in cases where the OP has read your post and has confirmed that it fixed their problem and is the answer, but they never bother to mark it as the answer.  In that case, I will go ahead and propose my own post as the answer as a way to flag the OP or a moderator to mark it as the answer.


    Tom Overton
    Wednesday, November 2, 2011 10:44 PM
  • I think if the OP message is clear, then most likely moderator will see it and there is no need for extra proposing.

    BTW, that MVP in T-SQL forum continues to propose his own responses. In one of my messages I tried to point (by linking to the older thread) that this is not a very good behavior, but he probably never checked that thread reference. It is getting a bit annoying.

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

    My blog
    Thursday, November 3, 2011 2:28 AM