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New Answers section makes the need to be able to close a thread essential

    Question

  • The Answers section has its justification provided that the answer that you see in the section just below the original question IS an answer to that original question.

    However there is often thread spread even after a valid answer has been posted and some of those posts justify being marked as an answer. In that case there will be an answer in the answer section which isn't an answer to the question above it.

    This is going to confuse users no end (and also not help the Moderators who will need to in any case wander through the thread in order to find what the question was ....)

    Thus the presence of the Answer section is a new reason for the old request that it should be possible for Moderators to close a thread (make it read-only; no further posts allowed).

    The other reason for this request - which came also in the v3 timeframe but was never acted upon - is that I am really fed up with users who post a new "reply" to old threads (that are often anything between 1 and 2 years old - i.e. since the last post in the thread). There are two typical sorts a) a full new question which often enough the user ALSO posts as a new thread (I then delete the post to the old thread) or b) a comment "I have this problem too, did you ever get an answer?" (which I leave there but sigh because I have opened this new post just to see that).

    Perhaps even better would be automatic closing of a post after a certain period (6 months; 1 Year ?) with no action.

    WSS FAQ sites: WSS 2.0: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007: http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language titles) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx
    Sunday, March 29, 2009 7:07 AM

All replies

  • I agree that moderators should be able to close a thread, and also that threads be automatically closed after some period of inactivity.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Sunday, March 29, 2009 12:41 PM
  • I understand the problem you describe, and I sympathise with the moderators who have to deal with it, but I'm not sure the best answer is for moderators to close threads once a valid answer has been posted.  I can think of a few reasons why allowing additional posts in the thread may be helpful.

    1. A later poster may have a better or more complete answer to the question.
    2. A poster (perhaps even the original poster) may not understand the answer and need to ask for clarification.
    3. The answer may lead to additional related questions. These could be posted in a separate thread, but may be easier to understand in the context of the original thread.

    Personally, I would rather have the separate "Answers" section eliminated than have threads closed quickly.

    Sunday, March 29, 2009 3:21 PM
  • Agreed.  Old threads tend to spring back alive when somebody posts a good answer to an old unresolved problem.  Those answers are extremely valuable, preventing such a post by closing a thread would be a great loss.  Useless posts are not limited to old threads.  And an unanswered question is not the end of the world.
    Hans Passant.
    Sunday, March 29, 2009 4:34 PM
  • It is extremely rarely that I see answers to old questions. Mostly it is people posting a new question or asking if the guy (who is long gone) could pass on his solution.

    So whereas in a limited amount of cases you could be right and a new post could be useful, in the majority of cases they are in "my" forums at least not.

    We could of course reach a compromise by getting automatic closure of threads that already have at least one post marked as an answer. Would you accept that ?

    [As the post is still visible people could always link to a closed thread in their new posting giving the answer.]

    ----------------

    In reply to Blackwood, I'm not looking for closure as soon as a valid answer has been posted. I'm looking for closure after a certain time with no movement in the thread. It seems reasonable to close threads with no movement in 6 months.

    This in the case of applications software is easily enough as in that time new service packs; fix packs; collected fix packs have come out and previous answers are no longer necessarily valid.

    Hans Passant is I think mainly in the language forums where presumably this doesn't apply (certainly not as quickly) in most cases.

    So maybe we need this automatic closure only in the sets of forums for applications software and other software with regular SPs; fixes etc.


    WSS FAQ sites: WSS 2.0: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007: http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language titles) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx
    Sunday, March 29, 2009 4:44 PM
  • Hans Passant is I think mainly in the language forums where presumably this doesn't apply (certainly not as quickly) in most cases.

    So maybe we need this automatic closure only in the sets of forums for applications software and other software with regular SPs; fixes etc.


    WSS FAQ sites: WSS 2.0: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007: http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language titles) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx

    Mike:

    I work only in the C++ forums, and I am with you on this one.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Sunday, March 29, 2009 4:54 PM
  • One way to handle thread spread is to split the thread. I'm not a moderator but even as a user I would sometimes like to suggest/request a thread split. I've posted this as a suggestion elsewhere in this forum.

    Regarding your (b), anyone who posts a "me too" should also/instead be voting for the thread. Some user training is required. This is probably worth hiliting in the FAQ. Maybe the forum could filter for these if the poster did not vote and send them a msg suggesting they do so.

    Sunday, January 1, 2012 1:44 PM
  • See my long reply to your new thread on thread splitting.

    It should be noted that my two posts in this thread are from 2009 and that in 2010/2011 I made extensive use of the - then available - Lock function to *really* close threads.


    SP 2010 "FAQ" (mainly useful links): http://wssv4faq.mindsharp.com/default.aspx
    WSS3/MOSS FAQ (FAQ and Links) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/default.aspx
    Both also have links to extensive book lists and to (free) on-line chapters
    Sunday, January 1, 2012 1:53 PM
  • We were typing at the same time so I didn't see your other answer until after clicking Submit. Here is the link to thread spliting post in case anyone wants it.

    So maybe it is time to close this thread ;)

    Sunday, January 1, 2012 2:13 PM