none
Propose As Answer feature

    Question

  • Hi,

    Please, should be good avoid that the user can propose his own posts as answers. There are people that reply in a thread and automatically propose their posts as answers, so that prevent other users to reply in the thread. Only moderators should be able to propose their own posts as answers, but the already have the power to mark a post as answers.

    Cheers.
    .: Valeriano Tórtola :.: http://www.vtortola.net :.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 3:51 PM

Answers

All replies

  • This (total blocking of self-proposal) has already been posted here and supported by many of us.

    Unfortunately the forum software people don't seem to be acting on this request. The only response we had here from them that I can remember was someone from MS who asked for examples of non-answers that had been self-proposed. That only showed that they don't understand the problem at all.

    WSS FAQ sites: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com and http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 / MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx
    • Edited by Mike Walsh FIN Wednesday, May 13, 2009 3:58 PM
    • Marked as answer by vtortola Wednesday, May 13, 2009 4:14 PM
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 3:58 PM
  • Actually I thought that was weird that nobody complains about this before. Thanks, I hope that somebody hear our suggestions :D

    BTW : I'm realising now that the "Microsoft Partner" tag has disappeared from under my nickname in the posts ...

    .: Valeriano Tórtola :.: http://www.vtortola.net :.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 4:14 PM
  • I'm not sure I understand why you would want to prevent a user from posting an answer to their own question...  Say I ask a question and after some time discover the answer on my own.  Shouldn't I be able to post that answer (and subsequently mark it as an Answer) in the original Question thread?  Can you please explain why this feature would be helpful to you as well as other users so that I can ensure I understand your reasoning?  Thanks.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 7:07 PM
  • I'm not sure I understand why you would want to prevent a user from posting an answer to their own question...  Say I ask a question and after some time discover the answer on my own.  Shouldn't I be able to post that answer (and subsequently mark it as an Answer) in the original Question thread?  Can you please explain why this feature would be helpful to you as well as other users so that I can ensure I understand your reasoning?  Thanks.

    No, that's not the case :) Maybe I expressed myself bad, sorry about that.

    If you ask and after you find the answer by yourself, you can mark your own post as answer.
    If you ask and you forget mark an post as answer, the moderator can mark it.
    If you ask, and somebody reply with a good solution, and then I see the question and the replies and I think one of them should be the answer, then I can use the "Propose as answer" feature.

    The case I'm talking about is:  You ask, then I reply and thereupon I mark my OWN post as proposed answer to YOUR post , preventing that other people no sure about the "proposed answer" mark meaning reply. Doesn't make any sense that a user can propose his own replies as "proposed answer", in any case should be other users how propose a reply as answer.

    Do you understand what I mean?

    Cheers.

    .: Valeriano Tórtola :.: http://www.vtortola.net :.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 7:15 PM
  • Thanks for the explanation.  I feel I understand your scenario better, but I also feel that we should not prevent a user from Proposing his reply as an answer for the following reasons:

    1. This would then encourage users to sign in as a different user simply to propose their own answers (trust me, people will definitely do this)
    2. Proposing your reply is an Answer is a very useful way for a user to indicate that they believe they've solved the issue in the original Question and for the person who asked the Question to quickly see potential answers without having to first read through multiple other posts where either the replies ask for more details in the question or the user expresses that they would also like to know the answer.

    Maybe the real problem that needs to be solved is in how we inform our users of the meaning of Proposed vs. Marked states.  The existance of Proposed Answers should NEVER prevent a user from posting their own answer if they feel it would help.  Thanks.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 9:57 PM
  • 1) I don't think that anybody is gonna register another account only for propose his post as answer, because that gives no points, and the thread starter can revoke it, so wouldn't make sense. There are a lot of people with such a free time... but it's not very often haha.

    2) The most of the times that you reply to a questions, it's for give your solution to that question, you always think that your solution is THE solution. Only a few times you ask for a better explanation of the problem or more details. As it's working now, we can have a questions and 15 replies proposed as solution, each one marked by its own author, which doesn't makes sense.

    • The thread starter can mark a reply as answer, it makes sense because is the person that know the problem by first-hand.
    • The moderator cand mark a reply as answer, it makes sense because him is the moderator and can mark a reply as answer when the thread starter forget mark one.
    • The users can propose other users replies as answer, it makes sense because implies the agreement of two users in the same solution, it's a good indicator that maybe that is the correct solution to the problem. It could be a way where the users express their agreement with an especific reply.
    • The users can propose their own replies as answer, it doesn't make sense, because when you reply to a post, you reply the solution that you think is correct, so in the most of the cases you should propose your own answer as solution always. So if all the users follow that approach, every reply in the forum will be "proposed as answer" but the replies asking for more information/details, so what could be a useful feature, becomes useless. Another problem is that when the moderator review the unanswered questions, if there is someone proposed as answer, it´s possible that instead having to read all the posts... mark that directly as answer, therefore the bad approach of "propose as answer" is damagin the "mark as answer" aim.

    I don't know, when you participate in any community or web 2.0 stuff, you CANNOT rate your own content, it's the logical.

    Cheers.

    .: Valeriano Tórtola :.: http://www.vtortola.net :.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 10:25 PM
  • Practical example: http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/wpf/thread/6f963c5f-99ac-40e3-b375-0f1901e7b704

    I hope that user don't get mad on me :P

    In that thread, the user ask, I reply with the solution to his problem, he appreciate it and end. After, appears another user, that is not really sure about which the problem is, but reply and thereupon he marks his own reply as proposed answer. Why? I don't know.  Following your approach, he is doing right, and maybe I should mark my replies as answers as well... but what is the sense of that?

    In every thread, the most of the threads will have all their replies as "proposed answer", and the rest will have the majority.

    I think the "propose as answer" feature is a great and powerful idea, but because is bad used will be harmful.

    Cheers.
    .: Valeriano Tórtola :.: http://www.vtortola.net :.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 10:37 PM
  • I can see that there may be no changing your mind on this subject, but We created the "Propose" action with the intent of helping Moderators and Thread Starters determine the most probable Answers to Questions.  Could there be abuse of this action, Yes, of course, but there could also be a benefit in having this feature if the abuse is only from a small set of users.  

    Basically we need to determine the number of users abusing this feature (i.e. marking everything they post as "Propose as Answer") and additionally ask for feedback from all Moderators on the usefulness of this status on a Post.  Only after that should we consider removal (assuming that Moderators do not find it useful and/or it is commonly abused by many users).

    Thanks.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009 10:46 PM
  • Jason:

    The fact is that Propose as Answer is a very marginal feature that does little but clutter the interface and confuse users.

    The only benefit it might have, alerting moderators to posts they might Mark as answer, is completely trashed by Self Propose , because it introduces a lot of noise in what is in any case a very weak signal.

    Quiz:

    Do you think a self-proposal is a better indicator of

    (a) the quality of the response

    (b) the lack of humility of the proposer?

    I rest my case.

    I would be amazed anybody who is a frequent answerer in these  forums would support Self Propose.   This issue has been discussed many times, for example

    http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/ja-JP/suggest/thread/00584117-e777-4984-ba0c-dbb27101eca4

    What the forums need is a simple, clean, uncluttered interface, not gimmicks that are more often abused than useful.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 12:45 AM
  • I don't usually post "me too" responses, but as the forum administrators continue to suggest that there might be some net benefit to allowing posters to propose their own post as answer to someone else's question, I decided I should make an exception.

    As Dave and others point out, "Propose as Answer" is of some marginal use as it alerts the moderator that there may be a post in the thread that should be marked as answer. But this benefit is completely outweighed by the false positives caused by people proposing their own post as the answer. Consider what people responding to a question are thinking. 

    In some cases, they may feel the question is not clear and so they ask for additional information.  In this case, they will not propose their post as the answer.

    In other cases, they attempt to answer the question.  They may or may not have understood the question (the wording of many questions can be confusing), and even if they do understand the question, the answer may not be correct.  But do they think their answer is correct? Of course they do, or they wouldn't have posted it. 

    I hope Dave doesn't mind me repeating his words:  Do you think a self-proposal is a better indicator of

    (a) the quality of the response

    (b) the lack of humility of the proposer?

    I strongly believe that the answer is (b) and I think that nobody should be able to propose their own post as an answer to someone else's question.
    • Edited by Blackwood Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:16 AM correct typo
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 2:40 AM
  • >I don't usually post "me too" responses, but as the forum administrators continue to suggest that there might be some net >benefit to allowing posters to propose their own post as answer to someone else's question, I decided I should make an >exception.


    I don't usually post Me Too answers either, but this is clearly a case where the MS people simply don't get it.


    a) If self-propose is removed then ALL threads in which a post has  "propose as answer" status are potentially (and very likely) worthy of being upgraded to Answer status.

    b) If self-propose is retained then most of the threads in which a post has  "propose as answer" status are not worthy of being upgraded to Answer status.


    Thus the removal of self-proposal HELPS Moderators greatly.


    (Of course it only helps those Moderators who want to have only those threads marked as answered that really have been answered. It does not help Moderators who are looking for reasons to increase the percentage of posts in a forum that are "answered" even if half those threads aren't really answered.)



    You (MS forum person) may think that I am just picking my a) and b) out of a hat. In fact I have consistently in "my forums" unmarked self-proposals and also written replies to the people who have self-proposed asking them not to do this and instead to mark good answers from other people. 

    The result has been that the number (and percentage) of good "propose as answer" posts has increased drammatically over the past few months since I both rigorously (= always) started carrying out this policy and started informing people about it.


    Mike Walsh
    (SharePoint forums with the exception of "Development and Programming")




    WSS FAQ sites: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com and http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 / MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 5:04 AM
  • (Of course it only helps those Moderators who want to have only those threads marked as answered that really have been answered. It does not help Moderators who are looking for reasons to increase the percentage of posts in a forum that are "answered" even if half those threads aren't really answered.)
    LOL.

    But how true.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Thursday, May 14, 2009 2:06 PM
  • Perhaps vtortola should unmark the post in this thread that he marked as answered.

    The MS guy who posted a couple of posts here seems to have vanished again and it's maybe because their system says that this thread has been answered.

    I think it would be good if he read the three long posts above explaining just why self-proposers aren't helping.


    Valeriano ?

    WSS FAQ sites: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com and http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 / MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx
    Friday, May 15, 2009 4:25 AM
  • Perhaps vtortola should unmark the post in this thread that he marked as answered.

    The MS guy who posted a couple of posts here seems to have vanished again and it's maybe because their system says that this thread has been answered.

    I think it would be good if he read the three long posts above explaining just why self-proposers aren't helping.


    Valeriano ?

    WSS FAQ sites: http://wssv2faq.mindsharp.com and http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com
    Total list of WSS 3.0 / MOSS 2007 Books (including foreign language) http://wssv3faq.mindsharp.com/Lists/v3%20WSS%20FAQ/V%20Books.aspx
    I'm assuming by "The MS guy" you mean me so I figured I'd let you know that simply because I haven't posted back to this thread does not mean that I haven't been following it.  

    I still stand by my statement above that we need to really look at the data and not just "give the squeaky wheel the oil".  This type of analysis takes time and I apologize that it cannot be done immediately.  Your opinions are very valuable to us but please understand if we do not remove features that some find helpful simply because we are told that they are mostly not helpful by others.

    Thanks.
    Wednesday, June 10, 2009 7:06 PM
  • So, who exactly are you?  I know all the contributors to this thread very well.  Mike has been a moderator that's been active in this forum for as long as V3 has been live.  The OP, vtortula, has been both a valued contributor and question asker at these forums for as long as I remember.  Dave is an MVP at the C++ forums who, I think, has been contributing there and back in the NNTP days well before I ever took notice.  Got to know Blackwood pretty well from his ever insightful posts in the past year.

    You've got 18 posts on record.  I certainly don't know you.  But yet you claim to know exactly how these forums work.  Having deep insights how people that post here can never be trusted.  Know the true path for how they should be run.  Where exactly did you get these insights?

    Please introduce yourself.

    Hans Passant.
    Thursday, June 11, 2009 1:01 AM
  • So, who exactly are you?  I know all the contributors to this thread very well.  Mike has been a moderator that's been active in this forum for as long as V3 has been live.  The OP, vtortula, has been both a valued contributor and question asker at these forums for as long as I remember.  Dave is an MVP at the C++ forums who, I think, has been contributing there and back in the NNTP days well before I ever took notice.  Got to know Blackwood pretty well from his ever insightful posts in the past year.

    You've got 18 posts on record.  I certainly don't know you.  But yet you claim to know exactly how these forums work.  Having deep insights how people that post here can never be trusted.  Know the true path for how they should be run.  Where exactly did you get these insights?

    Please introduce yourself.

    Hans Passant.
    Hans,

    I neither claim to have deep insights to how people that post here can never be trusted nor would ever assume to jump to such a conclusion.  I'm confused as to why you would make such a rash judgement about me when all I have done is ask for more information to better understand the issue and suggest that we cannot simply react to complaints but must also see the underlying data before making a change that some people find useful and helpful (as stated by the forums PM).  

    My lack of posts aside, I have worked with this group for almost the past 2 years and while only part of that time was spent on the Forums Application, it was both at the beginning of my career at Microsoft and also now so there is some breadth of knowledge in how the system is implemented and has changed.  

    One additional note: while I know it is sometimes difficult to infer intent from a simple paragraph, I do feel your posts are sometimes a bit elitist and I would suggest trying to take a less "brute force" approach when responding to questions or posting in general.  While it may not give you more recognition points, it would certainly help make the forums a more friendly place (given the frequency and breadth of your posting).  Thanks.


    Thursday, June 11, 2009 3:12 PM
  • Hi,

    old topic but since the option is still there and I'm tired of asking people to "please not propose their own posts as answers", I was wondering if there is any hope for this issue to get resolved somehow.

    The least that could have been done is a survey on the topic and publishing the results which would support one side or the other.
    So if the general population and moderators are in majority for the self-proposing feature let it be. I personally find it very annoying and abusive ... take a look at this user who is a constantly self proposing (not that he is a problem, the fact that there is no restriction is a problem)
    http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/winforms/thread/1cc8e7dc-41db-45cb-8e01-02dca3b9ad53/#dae4b872-7576-4956-acb2-5c0515e050e5 - does this even make any sense ... he's suggesting that OP should do the same thing OP stated in his initial post and he's proposing that as an answer.

    And the question of moderators marking answers is another thing that needs to be looked at:
    http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/winformsdesigner/thread/e2cc4911-b815-452d-9fc7-1e4d788d940a

    There should be at least certain minimal amount of time that needs to pass before moderator can mark the thread as answered instead of the OP.

    Anyway, I wanted to bump this thread instead of opening a new one since there are many good points here (not clear why OP marked it as answered though).

    Best regards,
    Vladimir

    Thursday, May 13, 2010 5:37 PM