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Points for Self-marking Answers RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • We are exploring options to correct the ‘points’ calculation procedure.

    For review, points are awarded for posting a Reply (2), or for having one’s Reply selected as the ‘Answer’ (10). There has been constant criticism that points are being awarded for marking one’s own responses as 'Answer' –and that creates a self-serving conflict. Some folks are concerned that some users are ‘gaming’ the system to increase their ‘points’. After extensive testing, we have verified that points are indeed being awarded for self-marking your response to someone else’s thread. (Points are NOT awarded for self-marking your response to a thread you started.)

    When the correction is deployed, there is quite likely to be push-back and complaints from folks that have ‘lost’ points as a result of the recalculation. I know that I will most likely lose points since I have on occasion marked my reply as ‘Answer’ when the OP failed to return to the thread. While that is not a concern for me, it will be for some folks. (And no, the current points cannot be persisted since the re-calc procedure is not additive but comprehensive.

    So the question is this:

        What should the ‘message’ be to users to help mollify the complaints –both before and after the correction is deployed?

    Since we all will have to interact with folks asking questions about losing points, how do you see this best presented to Forum users?

    Your comments and suggestions are appreciated.

    -Arnie

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Monday, November 30, 2009 1:48 AM

All replies

  • Thank you, Arnie.  This by itself should mollify some of the other posts in this forum.

    The wording on the "mark as answer" popup or whatever could be:

    Note, you will not get any points for marking your own post as answer, or for answering your own thread.
    Monday, November 30, 2009 2:02 AM
  • The best solution is to keep points as they are, but fix for the future. Being the function is comprehensive, that cannot be done, unless there is some way of adding points to a user's account. If that was done, nothing other than a message in an update is required.

    If actually removing points from people, perhaps a system message would be effective in letting people know this was a bug and not some random decision. One of those big ones like when the server will be unavailable for a few hours. Say "At 6:00 PST the system will be going into maintenance to fix a bug in the award points system. Click here for more details on the bug."

    It would have a link to the message explaining the problem, "There has been a long-standing bug in the award point system regarding self-marked answers. That is, when a user started a thread and marked his own reply as the answer, the system granted the full answer points (10) to the user instead of the normal reply points(2). This resulted in an extra 8 points being awarded. The system was supposed to allow for marking it as the answer, but not award answer points."

    "Now that the bug has been fixed, user's points will reflect this correction. This will result in a reduction of 8 points per incidence."
    Monday, November 30, 2009 2:26 PM
  • Arnie:
    Only moderators and OP can mark their own answers, and only moderators get points for it, so I do not see the problem. This is clearly wrong, and moderators should be able to see that, and accept it.

    IMHO, a  more meaningful exercise would be a critical evaluation of self-marking and self-proposing in general.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, November 30, 2009 2:36 PM
  • We are exploring options to correct the ‘points’ calculation procedure.


    Arnie,

    Who is "We"?

    Regards, Dave Patrick .... Microsoft Certified Professional Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    Monday, November 30, 2009 3:26 PM
    Moderator

  • Who is "We"?

    Regards, Dave Patrick .... Microsoft Certified Professional Microsoft MVP [Windows]

    Over the past year, there have been highly publicised meetings at the PASS, TechEd, and MVP conferences where interested folks could meet with the forum development team, and discussion ensued with interested Moderators and the development team. This is but one of the ongong issues still percolating and gaining traction.  No secrets cabals here...

    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Monday, November 30, 2009 3:32 PM
  • The ones that really annoy me are when a moderator or MVP immediately marks thier post as the answer.

    It is extreemly impolite to not even give the OP a chance to respond to the post.

    If the OP answers thier own post, it sort of depends on the timing and context.  But if they don't get any points anyway, it is moot.

    If the MVPs/moderators are really here because they want to help people, they will understand the need for this correction.  If they are here for "competition" and get upset at losing the points, well too bad.
    Monday, November 30, 2009 6:20 PM
  • AFAIK MVPs can't mark posts as Answers only moderators (or something above)



    Regards, Dave Patrick .... Microsoft Certified Professional Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    Monday, November 30, 2009 6:25 PM
    Moderator
  • The ones that really annoy me are when a moderator or MVP immediately marks thier post as the answer.

    It is extreemly impolite to not even give the OP a chance to respond to the post.

    If the OP answers thier own post, it sort of depends on the timing and context.  But if they don't get any points anyway, it is moot.

    If the MVPs/moderators are really here because they want to help people, they will understand the need for this correction.  If they are here for "competition" and get upset at losing the points, well too bad.
    Non-moderator MVP's cannot mark their own posts as answer. Only moderators and OP can do this, and only moderators get points for it.

    I agree that these points should not be awarded. But I also find the whole concept of self-marking as (a) inappropriate and (b) de-motivating for other responders.

    [AFAIK, non-moderator MVP's have no special status in the forums, except for having their own category in Top Answerers.]

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, November 30, 2009 6:31 PM
  • Thanks, Dave & Dave.

    I did not know that.  In fact, I would have sworn I had seen that but I can't find an example now, of course.
    I agree that these points should not be awarded. But I also find the whole concept of self-marking as (a) inappropriate and (b) de-motivating for other responders.

    Davewilk, you are certainly right about that.
    Monday, November 30, 2009 8:00 PM
  • I'm a firm believer that not allowing the OP time to 'give' credit is inappropriate. Part of the giving matrix is having the opportunity to offer one's graditude in exchange for the 'gift'. Not allowing the receiver an opportunity to express graditude is arrogant and belittling.

    I am lobbying for a 'built-in' time delay for anyone other than the OP to mark Answers. Perhaps something in the order of 3-4 days after last activity for Moderators/Answerers, and 7 days after last activity for MSFT. Note I indicated last activity on the thread -NOT the OP date. That is a more substaintial change and will require greater lobbying efforts and a longer time horizon. The optimist in me thinks that it shouldn't take so long, and the practicalist in me understands the pressures on development teams.

    Over time, I've found more success when tackling one small piece of the puzzle at a time.

    SO, today's task is tackling the points awarded for self-marked Answers in order to remove that as a constant source of dissention..


    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Monday, November 30, 2009 8:25 PM
  • Arnie, you have my support, FWIW.

    Let us know if there is anything we ordinary users can do.
    Monday, November 30, 2009 9:12 PM
  • I'm a firm believer that not allowing the OP time to 'give' credit is inappropriate. Part of the giving matrix is having the opportunity to offer one's graditude in exchange for the 'gift'. Not allowing the receiver an opportunity to express graditude is arrogant and belittling.

    I am lobbying for a 'built-in' time delay for anyone other than the OP to mark Answers. Perhaps something in the order of 3-4 days after last activity for Moderators/Answerers, and 7 days after last activity for MSFT. Note I indicated last activity on the thread -NOT the OP date. That is a more substaintial change and will require greater lobbying efforts and a longer time horizon. The optimist in me thinks that it shouldn't take so long, and the practicalist in me understands the pressures on development teams.

    Over time, I've found more success when tackling one small piece of the puzzle at a time.

    SO, today's task is tackling the points awarded for self-marked Answers in order to remove that as a constant source of dissention ..

    Arnie:

    I really do not think it is the points that are the irritation. I consider myself a "power user" of the forums, and I did not even know that moderators/MSFT could receive points for marking their own answer. It is so obviously inappropriate that I never imagined it could be so. Beside, there is really no way for a 3rd party to know that someone has received points for a self-marked answer. For me I just find the whole notion of self-marking offensive and de-motivating for other responders.

    By all means get rid of the points. Only moderators and MSFT people are affected, so what is the problem?

    Creating a delay before allowing self-marking might be a marginal improvement, but it is more complex to implement and for me does not add much. When I go to a forum and see that a moderator or MSFT person has self-marked an answer, it does not matter to me that he/she did not do it immediately. The answer and the individual are both diminished in my eyes.

    If it were up to me I would get rid of self-marking altogether (for OP also), possibly replacing it by self-propose (for OP/moderator/MSFT only).

    [As has been suggested many times here, self-propose by ordinary responders should be eliminated, IMHO.]

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Monday, November 30, 2009 9:32 PM
  • Thanks David,

    One can read through many threads in this forum to quickly realize that Points for Self-marking is a thorn in the side of quite a few vocal folks. And I find that for every vocal person, there is often a large number with the same concerns that don't choose to voice their discontent.

    And yes, it is a small issue -but one that seems to consistently take a lot of heat, time, and effort. Let'd just difuse it and let it go away. Then we can work on the next irritant.

    Quite a few of us have debated the entire self-marking and self-propose mechanism with product groups. Don't be misled, it is the product groups that drive the feature set of the forums. For various reasons, products groups want Self-Propose and Self-Marking. It's not going away. We have find a way to remove the irritations caused by users marking without understanding -or marking for perceived self gain.

    About 'discounting' Answers just because they were 'Self Marked' by a Moderator. I tend to pay attention to the those marking answers. Some are easily discounted -and need mentoring, others I learn from.


    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Monday, November 30, 2009 9:51 PM
  • Arnie,

    What do you propose to do in cases when only one of the correct responses is marked by OP (the first one), even though the answers are given in a very short duration of time between them? In my opinion, all correct answers should be marked.

    Say, today in two threads my response was not marked because it was given few minutes later than the other response.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 12:54 AM
    Moderator
  • There is a lot of 'sloppiness' in the system. I've never encountered a 'perfect' system.

    As a Moderator, I try to find a balance between respecting the OP's preferences to award credit, and keeping a searchable 'true' record of Questions and Answers.

    Let's face it. Some times the OP marks his/her own 'thank you for your help' response as 'Answer'. I think that is often due to confusion or inattentiveness. Sometimes the OP marks a response that is not completely correct, or ignores a subsequent 'better' post because the marked answer gave him/her a clue and he/she was able to figure out the solution. And he/she wanted to give credit to the one providing the clue. Sometimes, in the face of multiple seemingly duplicate posts, the OP just picks one not knowing that credit can be awarded to all. And of course, as we know, most often the OP solves the problem and does not return to the thread to award any credit.

    Moderators and (in those Forums that have them) Answerers, have to exercise their subjective judgement. We have to realize that Forum/network latency may come into play -and award credit to similar correct responses posted within a short time range. We have to realize that one of our tasks is to ensure some semblance of 'fairness'.

    So I give credit for multiple similar responses posted within a short time range. I give credit for totally different responses IF they also equally sove the problem and were posted within a short time range. I give credit for a correct response to part of an evolving question -you know the one that starts out with a question, and continues to evolve in complexity with each subsequent clarifying post from the OP. When someone gives his/her time to correctly answer the question in its current state, they deserve credit. As the question evolves, others may deserve credit for other parts of it as well. And the same person may be awarded credit again for providing the answer for the next segment of the evolving question. My attitude is that a question answered deserves credit.

    AND I do not hesitate take away credit away, when in my opinion, the next reader would not be able to solve his/her problem relying upon that 'answer'. I also do not hesitate to remove credit from 'Me Too' responders. You know, the ones that post a solution identical to one previously posted in the thread -but long after that reasonable latency period.

    That is my measuring stick. Will a reader with a similar problem, finding this thread from a search engine, be able to solve his/her problem from the 'Answer'. If not, then it is NOT an answer.

    But please, if you 'unmark' answers, take responsibility to educate all readers and leave a note of explanation.

    We all need to understand that our role as Moderator or Answerer is not to be only 'playground cops' and ensure polite behavior, but to be educators by example. We are Moderators because we know how to find answers. We are Moderators because we know how to communicate. We are Moderators because we passionately believe that we can make the Forums a productive, useful, and fun place to seek help.



    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 1:37 AM
  • Moderators and (in those Forums that have them) Answerers, ...
    What is an Answerer? I did not know there was any such concept in these forums.

    If there is, and they are allowed to self-mark, I will have to amend my statement that only moderators will be affected by not assigning points for self-marked answers. But in any case, the points are clearly wrong.

    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 3:40 AM
  • I agree with what Arnie said and I think we (I first and then you) started an off-topic discussion in relation to this thread. I checked these two samples and without even reading the whole thread it's absolutely obvious that these two answers should not have been marked immediately as answers and obviously not by the person who posted them.

    I've just realized, that your message is not really off-topic to the original discussion, it's showing the samples where the points should not have been awarded in this manner.


    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 3:44 AM
    Moderator
  • Off-topic question, but just to clarify - when you mark someone's answer as helpful (or answer) - does it add point to you?

    How much points are given when your post is marked as helpful? And does something happen if your post is proposed as an answer or you're proposing the post as an answer?
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 4:47 AM
    Moderator
  • David,

    Someone with 'Answerer' status is allowed to mark Answers. He/she is not allowed other Moderator priviledges. In the SQL Server Forums, we use 'Answerer' status as a type of apprenticeship for folks that seem to have the potential to become Moderators. Each product group has its own standards about Moderators and Answerers. Some do not use the Answerer status.

    Naomi, The poster get the credit for Answer or Helpful -not the marker. (Of course, the current situation allows Moderators and Answerers to mark their own posts as Answer and gain points.)

    Anyone can mark Helpful. The Helpful poster gets 5 points for each Helpful vote.
    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 6:56 AM
  • Arnie - I like the plan being discussed here.  (I'm a MSFT user, but I'm not on the forums team, and I do not have the power to mark any post as an answer)

    As davewilk mentioned, it only impacts moderators/MSFT staff.  So I don't think you need to worry too much about the message that's delivered for the loss of points.  Maybe have the forums folks send an email to all impacted users with the overview you provided, but I don't think there's a need to explain the reasons behind the change.  Or as Brian suggested, just send them a link to the forum threads discussing this.

    As for the time delay, I think that it's a good idea.  I HATE using the self-mark feature, but in cases where the person agrees that I answered the question and didn't use the "mark as answer" button, I have used the feature.  I only feel a little dirty doing that :) 

    But I don't understand why the delay would be different for moderators/answerers vs. MSFT staff.  Can you please explain that part?  Also, I'm sure there are some teams that track their statistics.  I don't think they're going to be very happy about this added delay.

    Naom - Regarding marking similar posts as answers, I personally don't see the value in this.  By suggesting that similar posts be marked as an answer, you're opening the door for people to game the points system by consistently waiting until after someone else has posted a response, and then posting something very similar soon after.  I don't think it's a problem if multiple answers are tagged as the answer, I just don't think that it's something that users should be encouraged to do.  Like you, I've had quite a few posts that I
    know answered the question for the user, but they weren't flagged as an answer.

    I think there's a bigger problem here with posts that don't answer a question getting marked as an answer.  But taking actions on the points is still good progress.


    Want to know if your current hardware & software will work with Windows 7? Check out these links: **Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor ** **Windows 7 Compatibility Center**
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 6:58 AM
  • Mark,

    Thanks for the comments. A couple of folks have now brought to the forefront that any loss of points will only affect Moderators. I would hope that as a group, Moderators will understand and support the correction. We just need to find the right way to 'advertise' the upcoming correction.

    The time delay issue is in embryonic form. In some Forums, there are offshore support teams charged with closing the open threads in order to improve the metrics. Sometimes they are overly eager and many of us feel that the OP should be given more time.

    The suggested different time delay between Moderators/Answerer and MSFT staff is to allow the community to 'own' the marking process, with MSFT staff assisting only when necessary.
    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 7:10 AM
  • The time delay issue is in embryonic form. In some Forums, there are offshore support teams charged with closing the open threads in order to improve the metrics. Sometimes that are overly eager and many of us feel that the OP should be given more time.

    The suggested different time delay between Moderators/Answerer and MSFT staff is to allow the community to 'own' the marking process, with MSFT staff assisting only when necessary.

    I agree with the "overly eager" tagging part :)

    As for the time delay, do you think that would put more pressure on the other moderators to tag the posts faster?  If it's not going to make them tag the posts any faster, and there aren't other steps being taken to get OP's to tag answers more often, then I don't think the extra delay for MSFT staff would make much of a positive difference. 
    Want to know if your current hardware & software will work with Windows 7? Check out these links: **Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor ** **Windows 7 Compatibility Center**
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 7:41 AM
  • The hope is that if Moderators feel that they are an important part of the process, more will step up and take ownership of 'moderation' -including marking answers. Currently, it is difficult to feel a part of the process since the offshore team will cycle through and eagerly close threads.

    Frankly, there are way too many folks that are Moderators in name only. They do very little actual 'moderation'. In their defense, there is little in the way of 'training' or mentoring, or monitoring of Moderators. Most are tossed into the pool and left alone. There needs to be a way for folks to get help and guidance as they learn how to be Moderators.

    In the SQL Server forums, we have an active offline communications channel that is heavily used by Moderators and Answerers to 'learn the ropes'. Folks ask for help, point out troublesome threads, even note troublesome users. Senior Moderators actively 'mentor' Answerers about the necessary tasks and how to make the judgement calls necessary for moderation. As a result, we have a strong and vibrant cadre of Moderatrs and Answerers that are not timid about actually 'moderating'...
    "You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 7:54 AM
  • Naom - Regarding marking similar posts as answers, I personally don't see the value in this.  By suggesting that similar posts be marked as an answer, you're opening the door for people to game the points system by consistently waiting until after someone else has posted a response, and then posting something very similar soon after.  I don't think it's a problem if multiple answers are tagged as the answer, I just don't think that it's something that users should be encouraged to do.  Like you, I've had quite a few posts that I
    know answered the question for the user, but they weren't flagged as an answer.

    I think it depends. If it's absolutely clear that they were both independent answers and they both provided an answer, then I consider it's slightly unfair to not be credited an answer mark for the correct response. Of course it's better to not concentrate on such details and keep answering, yet it leaves a bitter after taste.

    Anyway, for two particular cases I have in mind I already brought these threads to attention of the answerer and he agreed to mark them after 5 days period, I just need to not forget to remind about them.

    There are also cases where the "Thank you" response is marked as an answer. I don't know what to do with such cases since I understand the moderators only have ability to change marks in particular forum and not every forum and I can not bring every such thread in the forum's feedback for consideration.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 5:45 PM
    Moderator
  • BTW, isn't this thread http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/transactsql/thread/3d271f5d-f049-43b3-b57d-1671d2e3bba3 an another sample of the problem?
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 5:57 PM
    Moderator
  • I don't see an option to vote as "Unhelpful" for a post. I would not recommend adding such an option, but sometimes it's clear when the response doesn't contribute helpful information to the thread.

    In fact, that's what I noticed in another forum forums.asp.net with the particular user. Quite often he posts really bad advices in SQL Server forum, but mostly because he doesn't know better. In few cases he did indeed contribute helpful posts.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Tuesday, December 1, 2009 9:26 PM
    Moderator
  • http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/reportabug/thread/0bd91058-2370-4161-b34c-89f1024b71ce 

    :)
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Wednesday, December 2, 2009 12:56 AM
    Moderator
  • Arnie - Regarding mods feeling like a part of the process, my impression was that if you put more of a burden/expectation on them, then it starts to feel more like a job.  But you know the mods better than I do :)

    Naom - I would LOVE to see the option to vote a post unhelpful.  Why?  I have seen several cases where someone suggested formatting a drive with data on it as a first troubleshooting step.  That's horrible advice that can cause someone to lose a lot of data.  There are other cases where it's needed (like where the advice is a bulk copy/paste from some other thread, and there's no chance it's going to lead to any resolution).

    Unfortunately, there are too many issues with a system that has a way to vote down a post.  We don't need more drama around here.


    Want to know if your current hardware & software will work with Windows 7? Check out these links: **Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor ** **Windows 7 Compatibility Center**
    Wednesday, December 2, 2009 7:02 AM
  • Yes, I meant Adam in that thread. He is very knowledgable person in T-SQL forum.

    BTW, the random avatars and swastika symbol was discussed on Forums.ASP.NET as well, as I recall.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Wednesday, December 2, 2009 11:06 PM
    Moderator
  • Unfortunately, there are too many issues with a system that has a way to vote down a post.  We don't need more drama around here.

    Mark, I really do not see an issue.  You only get one vote.

    You can either vote for or against a post being helpful.  Or you can abstain and possibly vote at a later time.

    To vote against, right click the green "triangle" and select "Open Link in New Tab".  Click Submit, without selecting "Is helpful".  This was previously reported by derosnec.  This is probably a bug in the forum software and will probably be eliminated--unless we petition enough for it.
    Wednesday, December 2, 2009 11:36 PM
  • Hi Derosnec,

    Sorry for off-topic. I believe you have a thread about Photoshop problem in Windows 7. Can you please point me to it? Below is the question from someone on another forum:
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I can no longer manipulate images in Photoshop. I do not know what happened. No matter what image I am opening, and even if I restart Photoshop, no matter on which options I am clicking on, as soon as I move the mouse over the image, I cannot see the cursor represented by the option I clicked. The only thing I see if a hand. I cannot change anything in the image, cannot resize it, cannot change the text and so on. Anyone would know what could have caused this?

    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Wednesday, December 2, 2009 11:53 PM
    Moderator
  • Here is one of the cases of what I meant http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/transactsql/thread/1112f72c-ace8-4801-a4ce-b77f3f502234

    As you can see, the OP marked only one response and the moderator marked another. Both were submitted at the same time independently. So, in cases when it's obvious that both answers are answers anyone with moderator's privilleges should mark the response that OP forgot to mark to keep things fair, IMHO.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Thursday, December 3, 2009 5:39 PM
    Moderator
  • BTW, isn't this thread http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/transactsql/thread/3d271f5d-f049-43b3-b57d-1671d2e3bba3 an another sample of the problem?
    Naom, you're speaking of Adam T?  I met him in a (substantially censored) thread when I was protesting all the swastika avatars.

    I've been following these discussions with interest, but now I feel the need to make at least some comment seeing as my name was mentioned.

    So, one a a time.

    First Naom, the thread you have highlighted is indeed an example of the problem. I will openly admit that I have marked my own posts as answers in the past and as can be seen from the dates on the audit trail of the thread (I'm not sure if non-moderators can see the audit trail) in this case I had done so too eagerly. My bad. I completely agree with the notion that this is bad etiquette and that a greater amount of time is allowed before resorting to doing this. I will come back to this later. BTW I appreciate your kind words.

    Next Arnie and the topic of this thread, as I've mentioned above, I have resorted to marking my own posts as answers, however in the majority of cases this would be in old abandoned threads that had not been picked up by any other moderators and doing so only to help other forum users and not myself by bumping up my score.

    I do not necessarily see this as a bad thing, after all we are here to moderate and marked answers are supposed to help with search results, so that's just what I was doing. Would I care if the algorithm was changed and I was not credited with the extra points even if it meant dropping down a level, I'd have to say "a little" no=80% yes=20%. Like it or not, the points and medals system is in place and is there to give recognition to the forum participants and visibility to the people asking the questions of the sort of individuals that are doing the answering. 

    I said 80% no because points do not really bother me any more (they used to) and my main focus is to help the community by sharing my knowledge. I say 20% yes because even though I'd marked some of the posts myself (sometimes after weeks or months) it doesn't change the fact that I did provide the right answer and hence deserve the credit for doing so. But as I already stated, points don't bother me that much any more.

    Regarding offshore moderators, I wonder if all moderators have expertise in the subject area of the forum they are moderating, or is it more mechanical than that?

    Maybe what could be done as part of this change is that in all cases where posts are self marked as answers (whether it's the OP or a Moderator), these posts be reverted to the "Proposed as answer" status? The offshore team and Moderators can then go back over these threads and mark them appropriately. What do you think?

    I agree with this change and I believe that rather than not crediting users for marking their own posts as answers, it should not be possible in the first place and the feature should simply be disabled. By this I mean that the button should not appear on your own posts and that at most you should be able to propose your own post an answer (even or especially in the case of the OP). Proposing your own post as an answer is in itself problematic and should potentially only be allowed after a set period of time.

     

     

    Last and by all means least derosnec, I do not really care what your opinion is of me. I care what other, respectful forum users think. You are very opinionated which in itself is not a bad thing, however I feel that your approach to voicing your opinions is misguided, very disrespectful and in many cases your posts are either not relevant to the discussion at hand, not helpful or both. This is not a forum for voicing opinions of injustice, prejudice, censorship or whatever else you choose to cry about. It is a place to ask questions, get helpful answers and have on-topic discussions about specific technologies and not to berate Microsoft or other forum users. If your contribution does not fall within these categories then expect moderators to do their job and delete your irrelevant content i.e. moderate your contribution to the community.

    You've got to ask yourself, would you really welcome someone in your house if they keep spitting at your door and throwing litter on your lawn? I think not.


    Adam Tappis. (MCSD VB6 & .NET, MCDBA SQL 2000)
    Friday, December 4, 2009 12:49 AM


  • Last and by all means least derosnec...  I care what other, respectful forum users think... very disrespectful...





    Alan, review your advice  " Dude, get a life "  in the swastika thread.  I'm glad it remains there to help with search results (as you eloquently phrased it above).


    Nice try, but your credibility is zero.


    I'm sorry sir, we're not all as perfect as you and frustration gets the better of people sometimes. What would you say your level of credibility is?
    Adam Tappis. (MCSD VB6 & .NET, MCDBA SQL 2000)
    Friday, December 4, 2009 1:31 AM


  • You trolled that thread shamelessly.  You're doing it again here.


    There are several types of respect, Adam.  One type is earned.  That is what this present thread is all about.  Earned recognition.  Honor points.



    I agree, so what's your point?
    Adam Tappis. (MCSD VB6 & .NET, MCDBA SQL 2000)
    Friday, December 4, 2009 2:37 AM
  • I have been thinking a bit about the problem and here is what I propose:

    1. Instead of removing all points for older posts, review each case separately - in many cases the response was indeed the answer.

    2. Remove ability from moderators / answerers to mark their own responses going forward.

    3. Leave ability for the OP to mark their responses but add a confirmation message.

    4. Add ability to mark even the first response in the thread as an answer. Say, I saw a case today in VFP forum when the person asked a question and found the answer himself and updated the post.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Friday, December 4, 2009 3:29 AM
    Moderator
  • Naomi, I think there would be way too many old posts, for your first point.
    Friday, December 4, 2009 3:35 AM
  • I looked up few threads out of curiosity, say, this one http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itprogeneral/thread/26cd1bcf-a7f9-4d4c-b301-48a72f55b7cc/#14d74589-cdae-4983-95f9-d9f1de862f47

    Very strange - why would someone mark posts about 6 or more months after the fact? Besides, it doesn't look that the thread was actually resolved by these answers.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Friday, December 4, 2009 3:52 AM
    Moderator
  • Based on these few examples it doesn't seem like the moderator was doing a great job. Perhaps these threads would be better left unresolved.
    Premature optimization is the root of all evil in programming. (c) by Donald Knuth

    Naomi Nosonovsky, Sr. Programmer-Analyst

    My blog
    Friday, December 4, 2009 4:15 AM
    Moderator
  • Deronsec:

    How did you generate this list of activities?
    David Wilkinson | Visual C++ MVP
    Friday, December 4, 2009 4:15 AM
  • Mark, I really do not see an issue.  You only get one vote.

    You can either vote for or against a post being helpful.  Or you can abstain and possibly vote at a later time.

    To vote against, right click the green "triangle" and select "Open Link in New Tab".  Click Submit, without selecting "Is helpful".  This was previously reported by derosnec.  This is probably a bug in the forum software and will probably be eliminated--unless we petition enough for it.

    http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/suggest/thread/c93b3da2-1ed9-4fd3-bdaf-058fc580f766#25dd39eb-1ab9-4d6b-ac62-1b13d9b93663

    Ronnie's post explains why we can't have this.  It would be a moderation nightmare.
    Want to know if your current hardware & software will work with Windows 7? Check out these links: **Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor ** **Windows 7 Compatibility Center**
    Friday, December 4, 2009 8:14 AM