Trying to enforce original posters to mark a reply to be marked as answer RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • There was a reply on an answer from me that told me that in the text I must not use the word propose.

    This stated in the message thread from somebody where the replier wrote that it was somebody new.

    To that completely unrelated reply to the question from the original poster was this sentence.

    I hope this helps, if that is what you want, just mark it as answer so that we can move on

    In my idea this is real bad.

    The mechanism of proposal is a kind way of telling that something is meant as answer for the question of the OP and the Newsgroup Moderators.

    Using this kind of text can give the idea to somebody new that he should do that to move on.

    While in my idea it is not done to use a question from somebody to show your own feelings.
    • Changed type Cor Ligthert Sunday, June 7, 2009 5:44 AM Something went wrong
    • Moved by Martin Xie - MSFT Wednesday, June 10, 2009 10:52 AM Move it to Suggestion/Feedback Forum for better responses. (From:Visual Basic General)
    Sunday, June 7, 2009 5:43 AM

All replies

  • You just mad and have this thread coz all people not like when you mark ALL ur post as the propose answer .     LOL
    Sunday, June 7, 2009 6:41 AM
  • Cor Ligthert said:
    ... The mechanism of proposal is a kind way of telling that something is meant as answer for the question of the OP and the Newsgroup Moderators...

    I made that mistake before too and marked my replies as proposed answer. Now, answer me a question:
    What other possible reason could you have to reply to a question if your intention is not to provide help / an answer? While you reply you are already proposing your post as answer! Now, checking this neat little box underneath your own post is quite selfish. If this forums would have a VOTE system, I would ask if checking your own posts as proposed answer stinks egoistic or not. What is wrong with the idea to let others decide if your reply could be proposed as an answer or not?
    Sunday, June 7, 2009 8:09 AM
  • O.Mar,

    Not true, only if I have for 80% the idea that it could be the answer I suggest it as answer.

    But that is another subject, here is something else asked.

    Sunday, June 7, 2009 8:29 AM
  • You should not propose that as answer because that is exactly the mechanisme for, to make a distinct between a reply for whatever then a proposal (suggestion) as an answer

    But this question is not about the mechanisme of proposed answer, this is about telling people to mark questions as an answer and with that completely close the messagethread.

    And that in every reply even as it has not to do with the question from the original poster
    Sunday, June 7, 2009 8:33 AM
  • Hi Cor,

    I would say it is difficult to enforce as some forum users might ask a question and not log back into these forums for a week or more, some even forget and leave it for months on end or never respond at all.

    I have also seen replies or extra questions posted in some really old threads in which I have replied.

    I leave it up to a moderator or the OP to Mark As Answer , although some posts so marked have nothing to do with the original question are often just plain text without any provided url link(s) and with no code snippet involved.


    I often see one or two moderators mark certain posts AS ANSWER.
    This process I do not mind at all.

    I wouldn't lose any sleep over all those threads whose status remains as UNANSWERED


    Monday, June 8, 2009 1:23 AM
  • I think if you think strongly that the answer you have given is the answer to the question and as a suggestion to the OP to mark it as such is ok or you can mark another post by another person if you agree that that was the answer . When a moderator sees that a post is marked as a proposed answer they can read the post and if they agree can mark it as the answer for the OP . So it can be a sign to a moderator to view the post . The forum uses filters a moderator in the course of his duties can use that filter to find these posts and cleanup the forum .
    Coding for fun Be a good forum member mark posts that contain the answers to your questions or those that are helpful
    Monday, June 8, 2009 6:29 AM
  • John,

    This mechanisme is simply for MSDN to get more qualified answers, but as persons not are marking their posts as proposed answers, then it stays impossible to get that better. This needs of course that you are for at least for 80% sure that a reply can be the answer.
    Have a look at the post from bdbodger, who describes this sign to the moderator in the way I like and did with success use it.

    It is in my eyes always better than that what is done by those persons, very active here, every message which has even not the slightes context as an answer, has a text which can be interepreted by the reader, that it should be market by him/her, to make it possible to move on with his/her question.


    Monday, June 8, 2009 6:41 AM
  • It has been a long standard moderator policy at these forums to be flexible about what's acceptable in a signature line.  Drawing traffic to a commercial web site or blog, political statements, stuff like that.  As long as it is not hate-speech or really distracting flashing animation.  As such, asking users to mark posts is, at best, a community service announcement, at worst a bit useless.  Microsoft moderators were the first to consistently use a sig like that.  You are going to have to come up with much better arguments if you want this policy revised.

    I think I caught a whiff of what's behind this.  I would strongly recommend you consider adopting the answer marking policy that's been in place here for a long time and has been relatively pain-free.  I saw a post a while ago that described what you're doing with a very good word.  It is gauche.

    Hans Passant.
    Thursday, June 11, 2009 10:06 AM
  • nobugz,
    I agree entirely with your above post! Unfortunately, this thread only contributes to the confusion of new members on how to handle that PaA button correctly!
    Listing SPEC's is not a review !!! :-)
    Thursday, June 11, 2009 11:44 AM
  • Some background info might be helpful to see what PaA is all about.  About 3 years ago, the MSDN forums became very popular.  Lots of groups within Microsoft became very interested in them as an alternative to providing support to their customers.  Beyond the support offered by Microsoft Support, a paid service that tended to get customers pretty upset about fees that didn't quite match the service offered.  The forums administrators started circulating an internal document that showed the performance of the forums.  Based on a very simple and easily measured statistic available at the time: the answer rate.

    What happened next is what happens in any large company that uses statistics to measure their success.  The admins started tinkering with the numbers to make them look better.  That is, for example, how the Chinese moderators got involved.  They got hired with one primary goal, getting a thread marked answered.  That worked out well, within a few months the answer rate doubled.  Their names rocketed on the top answerer list.  You can imagine the upheaval this caused.  It took a while for them to find an answer marking strategy that wasn't quite that blatant, but it still draws complaints today.

    Other tricks were used, there was an "Answerer" role.  A title given to community members that didn't give them any moderator rights at all, just the privilege to click the "Mark as Answer" button.  That's gone now, it didn't work.

    Lots of other ideas couldn't be implemented, the forums software turned into a nasty spaghetti bowl around the same time and became unmaintainable.  High on the list of features to be implemented in the next version was a way to get other users to get a thread out of the doldrums of the "unanswered" statistic.  That was done, a little over a year ago, Propose As Answer made it into version 3.

    Tinkering didn't stop there.  At first somewhat logical, an update suddenly made it possible for a poster to propose his own answer.  That got rolled back in the next update, to come back again in the next update.  Any attempts by the community to get rid of it again since then has stranded on rocks of indifference and a constantly changing list of names of Microsoft employees in the admin role.

    To be clear: any moderator worth his salt (which includes any I know) completely ignores a self-PaA.  If it is worth anything, it is a sure sign that the post was made by newbie.  If you contemplate self proposing, do consider that it actually reduces the likelihood that your post will be marked as the answer.  And that the only one that will actually benefit from you doing so is some nameless and faceless forums admin who is more interested in looking like s/he's doing a good job to the boss rather than to the million-odd Microsoft customers that use these forums as a resource.  Don't be a smuck, don't self-propose.
    Hans Passant.
    Thursday, June 11, 2009 12:55 PM