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 Poll: Should the posts of post whores and other irrelevent posts be deleted from the forum? Yes 41 (65.08%) No 15 (23.81%) Other (Explain) 7 (11.11%)

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Author: Subject: Should the posts of post whores and other irrelevent posts be deleted from the forum?
BromicAcid
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Should the posts of post whores and other irrelevent posts be deleted from the forum?

When I first started at this forum there was this understanding that unless something was both relevant and new that there was no reason to make a post about it. I mean, if you're not adding anything to the topic content then there is no reason to make a post to it. One-line quips were nearly unheard of. There were standards that we had, nearly 60% of our registered populace had posted and most of those posts, even from the people that only made one or two were of some measurable quality. But there was always the option not to post at all. Lately though I feel this forum quality has been slipping, especially from what I believe is just run of the mill post whoring, something this community just didn't suffer from to this extent ever before.

In addition to this post whoring there is also a somewhat sudden increase in the amount of off topic conversation in threads, the phosphorus thread for one had several posts in a row, that although relating to phosphorous, were irrelevant to its production. The thread on organisms growing at unusual concentrations degraded into talk of silicon based life forms breathing fluorine and there are numerous other less extreme examples where two or three topics in a row are irrelevant to the conversation. And then there are all of these freaking one-liner replies that are just ridiculous and often singling out a little irrelevant topic in the post before to dwell on, like: “…the sulfuric acid was distilling at a manageable rate but suddenly there was some flash boiling so I had to shut things down.” Then someone would post a follow up: “At least you didn’t get burned ” It’s just ridiculous.

These things happen, things go off topic and occasionally we all feel the need to post one-liners. But as I said these events have been increasing as of late and if something doesn’t happen soon I feel this forum will forever deteriorate.

Or little quips like:
 Quote: Explain this to me, you are writing in a perchloric acid thread that you are concerned about barium toxicity? I'm missing something here! LOL Idunno, this pretty well sums it up: Well to be fair, the pitchblende was being refined, from tons down to what, half a gram... Well the thing with our basement is it's an old masonry foundation that sits right in the dirt, so it's always basically 90% humidity. Outside, today was beautiful though Isn't propylene g.ol just glycerin?.... You'll have to compress that butane pretty well, lest it freeze the H2SO4. Read the MSDS. http://www.google.com Last one I was using, I took all the red wires and all the black wires on the mobo connector and joined them together for each electrode respectively. Better than just using just one wire at 30A! Anyone wanna put down bets on when the whole set is going to go, completely? Ten dollars says two hours run time. Uh, virgin, meaning unaduterated, hymen still in place. Like, virgin aluminum is aluminum fresh from the pot line. It's in Webster's.
12AX7

Of course each line being a complete post, minus the tag line. 12AX7, tracing things back I think you may be to blame for some of this, you post about things you hardly know about, and when you don’t know something about some topic you search for something, anything to post it seems, even if it is just some vaguely related piece of information that serves no purpose other then to further your post count. But it’s not just you, other people are at this as well, and I feel bad for singling you out like this when there are others (You know who you are… neutrino, spark gap, I’m keeping my eye on you) who are going down this path and following this trend, you’re just the biggest target.

Personally I think Chemoleo, Vulture, Polverone, Ramiel, Madscientist, and I am a Fish should be encouraged to go through and do some forum pruning and delete posts that are irrelevant and little one-liner posts that add nothing to the conversation at will (older posts that have shown themselves to be irrelevant to the conversation) or at least move them to some far off dedicated thread in Detritus that will quickly grow to over 12 pages. As it is not only 12AX7 but other members now joining in on the action posting little quips and factoids that detract from the forum.

So, should the posts of post whores, irrelevant posts, and senseless one-liners be deleted and pruned from the forum, something that has hardly been done except in extreme cases in the past?

Shamelessly plugging my attempts at writing fiction: http://www.robvincent.org
woelen

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In principle I agree with deleting posts of post whores and all other kinds of irrelevant things. The problem, however, with this is that the decision about what to remove can sometimes be hard. So I would suggest to keep posts if there even is the slightest doubt about its irrelevancy. By doing so, I think that still most of the irrelevant posts will be removed, but that on the other hand relevant information is not removed accidently.

The art of wondering makes life worth living...
Want to wonder? Look at https://woelen.homescience.net
Ramiel
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The title of moderator was bestowed upon me as a joke, I hope we’re under no illusions here, and it’s radically naïve to consider me ‘up there with the royalty’ of the board. For this reason, I can comfortably speak as a Regular Joe board member about moderators, so:

‘What is the job of a moderator?’
To keep the board running smoothly, with as little fuss as possible, and as little deviation from the maxims of the creator as possible – when you think about it, a moderator would be doing their job best when there is no job to be done. In other words, ideally people wouldn’t post items that detract from the quality of the board.

I'm guessing the motivation of true post whores and trolls is to read over a thread again and again, and gravitate towards the replies to their posts. So Freud would just say 'If you begin to ignore little Hans where you would have previously scolded him for seeking attention: then the attention seeking behaviours will become more intense for a time. Finally, Hans will realise that behaving poorly doesn’t get him attention any more, and will seek other avenues of gratification.’
Simply ignoring bad posts has been tried. I think it worked… but the board was still clogged up with ‘mischief’ posts, and at-best-trivial information.

I've always considered it a cardinal sin to delete posts. It's the ultimate form of censorship. But if someone sees that their posts aren’t popping up on screen and aren’t being replied to, perhaps they’ll leave, or even better… moderate their own posting, so to speak, before they post. It seems the people are voting with their feet though…

Caveat Orator
Taaie-Neuskoek
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I voted 'other', so I have to explain now:
To delete at this stage posts is rather rude, and should be done with great care, otherwise confusion will occur, as even in one sentence there can be some information...

I know the mod's/admins do have more jobs than just keeping this forum clean, but maybe they start to be a bit more sharp in the future, and when a thread seems to slide towards a chatbox, they can type some warning in red or something.

But don't take this a critic mod's/admins, the work you put in this and other forum(s) is already very good, and I appreciate the amount of time you've put into it!!

I think it is good that you noticed this Bromicacid, I also noticed it a few times, where I thought: Where was this whole thread actually about, and had to scroll up to see the title.

[Edited on 8-9-2005 by Taaie-Neuskoek]

Never argue with idiots, they drag you down their level and beat you with experience.
vulture
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Your observation is absolutely correct, Bromic Acid. Retroactive measures are going to take lots of work though.

It's gonna take a while to do that, plus I think it's best the staff deletes at its own discretion, that is, where old posts that are off-topic do not gravely interfere with the thread, are left alone.

I'm all for a more proactive and aggressive approach against future postwhoring. Preemptive strike so to say

One shouldn't accept or resort to the mutilation of science to appease the mentally impaired.
mick
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From personal experience
I have posted a load of crap and, I hope, some good stuff in the past.
Keep the place open to all and U2U or something might work.

mick

Chemists have a good sense of humuor.

[Edited on 8-9-2005 by mick]
neutrino
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I never realized I was such a problem.

I will admit to being guilty of short posts (that's just how I'm used to writing).

I always posted under the philosophy of 'the more the merrier'--that any relevant, useful information should be added.

What do people suggest I do about all this? Fundamentally change that philosophy of mine? Stop posting altogether unless I can fill up a long post and elaborate more when I do post? Stop being so tolerant of people new to the fields we discuss?
Quantum
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Well first off I really enjoy reading long posts. That is why I like to read BLTC on totse because sometimes tweakers will ramble on for hours on some topic or other. But this is of course not totse and we must hold ourselves to a high standard so that information is clearly presented and there is only one large topic on each reaction, chemical ext in order to make searching easy and make archival faster(just click save page as)

Perhaps the mods could just delete all one liners and off topic stuff but, having copied them, post them(giving credit) in one large fragmented reply by the mod in question so that people can ignore it if they wish but it will not be censored, just moved, and people can pick through it if they will.

Perhaps mods could title replies like that as "Scraps of the Thread" or something. The only problem is that the cronological order would be all messed up thus making the scraps confusing to read.

Perhaps it's best to just delete them or pm the offender and get them to expand upon their idea if merrited.

What if, what is isn\'t true?
BromicAcid
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Neutrino, you do post good stuff, and I like your posts, really things are not too bad from anyone the way they are, I just fear them getting worse, just reminding people that what we write here might be avalible for quite some time and we should make the most of it. I don't want people to write posts and be wary of only stating a useful piece of information or something that is relevent but not entirely on topic.

Lately though it just seems the number of these posts had been increasing and I felt the need to vent. I am not saying anything about deleting a post only hours or even days that it is made, but many of use read through older threads and once in a while we will run across a whole section completely off topic (For example, in the phosphorus thread toward the begining there are several posts in a row relating to sodium manufacture). Some of these can be moved, some should be outright removed (the main topic of this thread) and I think a number of threads could benefit from this, the DPPP thread could be considerably shrunk and still retain a huge size.

I'm also not saying the mods should go on some holy quest going through every old thread and deleting irrelevent posts. Just if they happen to be reading the thread and a post completely sticks out as something that should not be there. But remember, as Polverone once said "Even stupid questions can lead to good discussions." So there is a line to walk, so it's just the calling for deleting completely crap posts that I am asking for the opinion on (anyone remember acid test?)

I'm glad that I'm not the only one to have noticed this in a way, and in a way I am not because it means it got to the point where it is starting to get annoying to some and detract from the board. Never the less, let's just generate some discussion.

And Ramiel, you've always seemed like a good moderator to me, seriously.

Shamelessly plugging my attempts at writing fiction: http://www.robvincent.org
Chris The Great
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I don't think that it's so much short posts, more that alot of the recent short posts have very little content and none of it is directly related to the thread at hand. We have an entire forum for stuff not directly related to the topic at hand.

I don't mind short posts such as "check out this referrence (journal title + abstract or link or attachment)", or simple statements and questions, when they are related to the topic at hand.
I don't like "hey guys thats cool" or "check out this completely unrelated event that happened to me" type posts.

Also, since I am one of those to blame for our fluorine breathing silicon based friends, I'll try to keep my posts on topic. Often I will start on topic but slowly drift a little away, then someone will reply even more off topic, and then I'll reply completely off topic....
Auto-catalytic reaction of off-topicness!

I don't think that deleting posts is the answer, I think that everyone needs to make a little teeny committment to try and keep things more on-topic (and if they do start getting off topic start a new thread or carry it on in an existing thread, don't keep clogging the original thread with unrelated information), and short posts strongly discouraged (stick in something in your on-topic post, but discuss it no further).
tom haggen
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I say go to town. I know I have posted a lot of crap in the past. I think if theres any question on whether a certain post should be deleted you should just save it on hard copy or something. Nothing like a clean board to promote new and efficient growth.

N/A
Fleaker
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I put 'other' because I believe it is dependant entirely on the posts relevance. If it is a post giving a link or some sort of sources, that should certainly be permitted. References are very nice. Even personal anecdotes that pertain to safety or other important experiences should be allowed as they can help prevent accidents.

I try to post useful and relevant ideas/experiences but I can't claim to be on topic everytime and to make long, detail-loaded posts.

The decision should be up to the moderator, but I do suggest the moderator send a PM/U2U to the offender in question and give him the chance to expound or expunge.

If it's irking you that much Bromic, perhaps we could make a standardized way to report info on experiments. Such as:

Subject:
Purpose:
Apparatus Required:
Safety/Disposal Considerations:
Data :
Analysis of Data:
Conclusions:
Questions to fellow forum members:

This would seem most applicable to the person who posts his results, yet could also be used for follow-up experiments. I'm sure many could improve upon the above, but maybe a standard, concise, clear/organized report would be useful; nothing wrong with a professional-looking report, right?
National Hazard

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Mood: @%&$ing hardcore baby Yes as long as personal fueds and what not do not get in the way, if posts are fairly judged, if this does not evolve into nazisim and at the moment that is it... Also if the question involves anything like HAY HOW DO I MAKE BLACK POWDER LOLOL TIME TO BLOW n00bs UP. The solution should be quite obvious. I think humor and sarcasim should be avoided to as this might turn into "Hay guys lets make a funny remark about this chemical reaction and in the process crap on this guys thread" I have seen this happen to other forums and it was only months before everyone started making "humorous" jokes. Well not involving chemical reactions/science forum but a computer forum. @ Fleaker standardizing would be a good idea. As that would eliminate certain trivial questions. BromicAcid International Hazard Posts: 3112 Registered: 13-7-2003 Location: Wisconsin Member Is Offline Mood: Legitimate The professional looking reports would be kind of nice, however I think they would clog the board a bit. It would be neat to have a separate database where each person could enter experiments they did in detail and when you wanted to know if something had been done before then you could search it for a few key words and *bam* instant results on how it worked for someone else, a collective experiment database. However like I said this would clog up this forum a bit if most experiments were posted here, expeically since I usually get 10 or 15 done a week, I mean, who really wants to read about barium cyanamide or distilling sulfuric acid, I put that kind of everyday information on my website as of late. Really though I think this thread has made most of the people here a little more responsible for what they post, because a lot of the people here that started as kewls but got smarter along the way regret their first posts here when they look back on them, because this information is technically going to be avalible for quite some time, we might be stuck reading the posts we wrote for quite a while. Shamelessly plugging my attempts at writing fiction: http://www.robvincent.org Fleaker International Hazard Posts: 1242 Registered: 19-6-2005 Member Is Offline Mood: nucleophilic I've been coming to this forum (lurking you might say) since a few months after its inception and I wholeheartedly agree with you Bromic, the quality is slipping. It was always my understanding that this was a board where chemists, students, and all those with a profound love for chemistry itself could share ideas and information for the advancement of each person. That's what it's about to me, not post-whoring to get a new 'ranking'. People clogging it up with trivial posts that have no relevance or as you mentioned bromic, discuss an insignificant point, is totally uncalled for and detracts from what we all are really doing. I agree that if everyone started posting standardized lab reports the board would get a bit clogged up. However, the home preparation of various reagents/materials is of use and interest to fellow enthusiasts. Additionally, fellow members could add their own experiences and questions towards he/she that posted. Why not even go so far as to critique certain methods and analyze the mathematics behind the reaction(s). It's necessary for improvement that we question each others' results and methods. That is one thing I wish I could see more of on this forum: math. Pouring several reagents together and getting a product is one thing, but knowing how much is going into the system, what it is doing, why, etc is far better. I think that some members of the board (sure some of you must be doctorates or just plain brilliant) take for granted the education and comprehension levels of others. I'm sure some do not even know the basics of stoichiometry let alone kinetics, thermal, etc. I'm not asking that we get into sigmoidal fits and other grad lvl chemistry, but just the basics pertaining to the experiment on hand. I agree entirely that some of the board populus started off in the less, er, the less constructive (in most cases and broadly speaking) areas of chemistry, but that's what drew them in to the finer points and the higher levels of understanding. We all have a common interest in chemistry, some of us with more or less knowledge and varying circumstances and setups with which to pursue enlightenment. It's just my hope that we collectively can act like a scientific community by helping and correcting and sharing information rather than engaging in contests of ego which is to me, a fool's game. That's my idealist rant....I can dream can't I? chemoleo Biochemicus Energeticus Posts: 3005 Registered: 23-7-2003 Location: England Germany Member Is Offline Mood: crystalline Well I wouldn't say it's slipping as much anymore, I have already noticed definite improvements. I fully agree with BromicAcid, the three core issues are 1) low/no information content 2) silly one-liners (which have seemingly no other purpose than to get heard and increasing postcount) 3) and constant joke-making making up the main point of a post Sadly, only the lack thereof define the quality of a forum. Jokes are great and all as long as they aren't constantly the point of a post. Some may think this is what makes the forum humane and friendly (oh yes you know who I mean) -, but it definitely DEcreases readability and quality. Search something. Read an old thread, seeking out a specific bit of information. Doesn't it then seem quite irritating that the info is hidden amongst a fair bit of junk? I never quite understood, why can't those (that are tempted by the above) confine their wit/humour, or their lack of knowledge on the subject or simply their laziness to Whimsy, rather than cluttering a perfectly decent thread? That's what it's for, within some VERY lax limits. Ramiel - this is exactly what caused the problem - people *hoping* that the post-whores would moderate their own posting once noone would reply. It didnt quite happen though did it. I am quite glad Bromic made this thread, making this issue public so that those concerned don't think they are being picked on by the mods - instead I think it's become increasingly apparent that it's in the interest of everyone that some restraint and thought is required before posting. Yet I agree with Ramiel that deleting posts is generally a cardinal sin, but what else can one do, i.e. in the extreme case of AcidTest/TGC? Or, when postwhoring (even when done intelligently where one feels much more restraint at criticising or deleting) gets out of hand? A public appeal to 'the guilty' and a raised awareness of the issues may yet do the job! Else... DELETION! [Edited on 20-9-2005 by chemoleo] Never Stop to Begin, and Never Begin to Stop... Tolerance is good. But not with the intolerant! (Wilhelm Busch) Ramiel Vicious like a ferret Posts: 484 Registered: 19-8-2002 Location: Room at the Back, Australia Member Is Offline Mood: Semi-demented Sort of on this topic... Since we all know that the post-count is a way to earn your stars, and higher post-counts confer higher status - Is there a way to limit which sections contribute to ones post count. For instance, posting on whimsy won't affect a revised post count, and possibly all those posts in the 'non-chemistry' section (like this one, which is in it's own special way, a post-whore event). That way I could post in whimsy without the associated feelings of guilt, like low fat ice-cream (preferably cookies and cream). A sort of "I can't believe it's not whimsy", har har. Caveat Orator sparkgap International Hazard Posts: 1234 Registered: 16-1-2005 Location: not where you think Member Is Offline Mood: chaotropic And after a good number of weeks since the original post. Yes, I believe I may have been a bit too heavy on one-liner posts, and I am sorry if they have been counterproductive. I do try, as much as I can, to make sure people can learn at least a little bit from my posts. I also do not wish to contribute to forum degradation. I need someone to give me a head-whack... sparky (~_~) "What's UTFSE? I keep hearing about it, but I can't be arsed to search for the answer..." vulture Forum Gatekeeper Posts: 3330 Registered: 25-5-2002 Location: France Member Is Offline Mood: No Mood Nevertheless, I've noticed Quince and 12A7X are both showing progressive postwhoring. Heads up fellas, or no cookies for two weeks. One shouldn't accept or resort to the mutilation of science to appease the mentally impaired. froot National Hazard Posts: 347 Registered: 23-10-2003 Location: South Africa Member Is Offline Mood: refluxed Clicked other. Yes I am not exactly a major contributor here, chemistry is merely a hobby for me, I wish I knew more so I could contribute more. But anyways... The level of quality of this forum is very high, of the best I've seen and I must commend the mods/admin for the great job they're doing. I hope you guys don't mind but I use the Sciencemadness forum as a model for forums that I moderate regarding the excellent control performed here. Sciencemadness has almost 3000 members and postwhoring/trolling is inevitable. Deleting dud posts will always be a contentious issue. 2 suggestions... 1. 'Cleaning' up stale threads, say, over a year old, leaving only contributional material for ease of reference. It may seem like a HUGE task but most of the stuff here is pretty clean anyway. 2. Change the text colour of non-contributional posts as and when they happen so that when reading, one learns to just ignore the, say, pink text. It may drop a subtle hint to postwhores that they don't really want to achieve a post count with their 'pink' contribution. Hmmmm. Maybe the vote was more 'yes' with a twist than 'other'. We salute the improvement of the human genome by honoring those who remove themselves from it. Of necessity, this honor is generally bestowed posthumously. - www.darwinawards.com Axt International Hazard Posts: 778 Registered: 28-1-2003 Member Is Offline Mood: No Mood I need to vent... <b>FPMAGEL</b> tends to piss me off whenever he posts. It pains me to see his shit smeared into threads where replying to it will only breed more rubbish posts. Joeychemist National Hazard Posts: 275 Registered: 16-9-2004 Location: Canada Member Is Offline Mood: Sedated I suggest the mods start cleaning the crap out of the Shaped Charge thread if you’re going to start anywhere. Has anyone actually tried to read through all the crap in that thread lately? It makes me sick! DeAdFX National Hazard Posts: 339 Registered: 1-7-2005 Location: Brothel Member Is Offline Mood: @%&$ing hardcore baby

random thought... But the people who put there email address in there posts demanding that someone emails them the answer should get spammed to hell and back with beastality porn...
Magpie
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That seems like unusually cruel punishment. I would think that a liberal dose of taunting and ridicule would do the job. But I don't really know as I don't usually read these kewl based threads.

The single most important condition for a successful synthesis is good mixing - Nicodem
Chris The Great
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