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IMPORTANT: New ATS Policy on Repeating Topics in Threads

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posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 12:48 PM
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Originally posted by infinite

Originally posted by Seekerof
Personally, the INDEXs should be updated, as required or deemed necessary. Likewise, I would like to see the eventual superpower of "edit" be given or allowed by FSMEs.



Thats what i would like to see,
i had to make a second index thread cause i could not edit the first one.


What about saving and posting boolean searches though like I was saying. Know how you click on those to save them? Then just copy and hyperlink in as the parameter search of words. Self updating.


I'll make an example.




posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 12:50 PM
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Originally posted by RANT
What about saving and posting boolean searches though like I was saying. Know how you click on those to save them? Then just copy and hyperlink in as the parameter search of words. Self updating.



ahh, i see what your saying.
So posting searches on topics such as the illuminati, nwo, etc?



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 12:53 PM
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Originally posted by infinite

Originally posted by RANT
What about saving and posting boolean searches though like I was saying. Know how you click on those to save them? Then just copy and hyperlink in as the parameter search of words. Self updating.



ahh, i see what your saying.
So posting searches on topics such as the illuminati, nwo, etc?


With fresh parameters. If I'm not mistaken, it'll update each time you click. (Correct me here if I'm wrong).

So while we may have dozens of threads on Nick Berg...

"Nick" "Berg" (past 30 days)

We really only have two remotely active. And it could be set to 7 days even.


The point being after we create an index of all the good first threads, no need to "update" it. Just add saved searches for "fresh" threads on the subject.

[edit on 10-3-2005 by RANT]



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 01:07 PM
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Originally posted by RANT
With fresh parameters. If I'm not mistaken, it'll update each time you click. (Correct me here if I'm wrong).

So while we may have dozens of threads on Nick Berg...

"Nick" "Berg" (past 30 days)

We really only have two remotely active. And it could be set to 7 days even.


The point being after we create an index of all the good first threads, no need to "update" it. Just add saved searches for "fresh" threads on the subject.

[edit on 10-3-2005 by RANT]


ahhh, one sees indeed.
This is an excellent idea
but i love index threads too



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 02:52 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord

(1) And even with a powerful and fast search (that admittedly could use better instructions) finding older threads on certain topics can be overwhelming.

(2) Now, this is fine if there is a thread fresher than 10 days, but if the odl thread is stale...

I think we've grown past the point where we can expect young members to be aware of stale threads...

(3) Stale Repeaters: If a new thread repeats a same or similar topic more than 10 days old (from last post), we'll place priority on the fresh thread. If we (staff) can find the older thread(s), we'll simply post a link to older threads which can should be used as a reference for the new thread.



I think a policy that encourages members to post their knowledge and impressions on everything relevant to the Forums is great. And it's not encouraging for a new member to have repeated glib messages saying "already posted here... thread closed."

But I disagree wholeheratedly with the concept of "stale threads". Knowledge is not "stale" if it is 10 days old. Some of the most important wisdom that we have is ancient. To say that something is "stale" when it's 10 days old, and to dispense with any motivation to find it, could be a recipe for endless reposts of precisely the same subject matter and the same conclusions or non-conclusions, over and over, couldn't it?

I know this policy will relieve pressure on staff who would otherwise need enormous library skills to keep up with the sheer volumes of material.

But to me, the solution lies in the ATS member having the use of an adequate search facility and the compulsion to use it. It's not the inadequacy of the Boolean search instructions. It's a couple of other things - the fact that the search engine simply doesn't work (otherwise the policy might not include "If we (staff) can find the older threads"...) and the fact that too many thread titles have no bearing whatsoever on what the member has raised for discussion.

I don't see myself as a "veteran" but I would be disappointed as a member to see a policy that brings about a "revolving door" approach to never-ending discussion of topics, never furthering the accepted knowledge base of ATS members, new and old, in any way that adds value to their membership of the site.

The issue does need addressing and it is commendable that it is being addressed. It is unfortunate that member growth is such a big hot button for site development, at the expense of improving what goes on with the knowledge here.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:17 PM
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Originally posted by MaskedAvatar
But I disagree wholeheratedly with the concept of "stale threads".
A bit of tongue-in-cheek that was lost.


Knowledge is not "stale" if it is 10 days old.
But it is hard to find if it's already on page 4 of a forum's thread list.


Some of the most important wisdom that we have is ancient.
Which is why we're encouraging the use of links to "stale" threads whenever possible.


But to me, the solution lies in the ATS member having the use of an adequate search facility
The search we have in place is the fastest and most advanced available for our type of database. Simple-text searches simply kill the database and site performance when attempted. As mentioned, an improved user interface and instructions are being considered.


the fact that the search engine simply doesn't work
It works very well. Can you give me an example of a search that was unsuccessful for you?


and the fact that too many thread titles have no bearing whatsoever on what the member has raised for discussion.
Well... there's nothing we can do about that is there?


as a member to see a policy that brings about a "revolving door" approach to never-ending discussion of topics, never furthering the accepted knowledge base of ATS members,
If new discussion continues, how is that not furthering the "accepted knowledge base". Or perhaps we need further clarification on what you mean by an accepted knowledge base.


It is unfortunate that member growth is such a big hot button
Growth happens. As it turns out, a majority of community members seem to express a great degree of pride when we reveal newer higher better traffic numbers, post count, and member count (and so on). In the case of a community such as ATS, solid growth is a validation of the quality of the material created by our members. Since it is the only thing attracting new members to the site. Over 40,000 unique users find there way here every day. At one point, we were enthused to see a number such as that associated with monthly traffic.


at the expense of improving what goes on with the knowledge here.
How is that? How will encouraging participation of new members (even if they repeat old material) harm our existing knowledge?



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:20 PM
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Sometimes you need to factor in new stories and evidence in cases and write a fresh one. Nobody wants to sift through 10+ pages of things by members who're most likely gone.

It's good to keep discussions current.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:27 PM
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I think most of the "repeat happy" posters reside in the paranormal forum.

I've lost count how many times this question comes up:

Can someone tell me about AP?

Duh! Duh! Duh!



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:28 PM
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Suggestion for problem:

What if you gave more points for replying to posts than authoring one.
Just switch it around. Is this out of your hands? It could work. It would promote a healthy discussion. What do you all think?



[edit on 10-3-2005 by Event Horizon]



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:29 PM
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I think this is a great idea as it can encourage a fresh look at some old topics. I have had trouble in the past with the search function, especially if the title of the original thread had nothing to do with the topic. Also, I spend a lot of my time on ATS late at night and I have noticed that some threads started during this time end up being repeated the following day. It's not much of a problem, but if the thread moves beyond the last 300 posts it becomes out of sight out of mind to many. I believe that a very good way to cut down on many repeated posts would be to remeber and title your threads according to the topic. Threads titled like "OMG I can't believe this" are eye catching but very easy to miss when performing a search on a topic.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:31 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
Can you give me an example of a search that was unsuccessful for you?

How is that? How will encouraging participation of new members (even if they repeat old material) harm our existing knowledge?



Thanks for the replies.

I'll try and recall a few frustrating examples of not locating particular threads, and send them to you. Perhaps others could do the same, so the Tutorial or Instructions can be improved.

A policy of encouraging new members may not have the effect of 'harming' the existing knowledge base, but a policy of referring to topics as stale may have the effect of burying it. Not a historically unusual phenomenon.

It really comes down to what the core objectives of the site are... I hope the policy works well for everyone.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 03:40 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
Can you give me an example of a search that was unsuccessful for you?

How is that? How will encouraging participation of new members (even if they repeat old material) harm our existing knowledge?


This is a good example. I agree with you skychief. Its hard to search for topics when the topic heading states this:


Originally posted by skychief
Threads titled like "OMG I can't believe this" are eye catching but very easy to miss when performing a search on a topic.



[edit on 10-3-2005 by Event Horizon]



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 04:58 PM
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Any chance of incorporating a "forced search" function prior to allowing the posting of a new thread? Such a module would come up as the first thing a poster sees if clicking on the "New Topic" button. The poster would then enter the keywords of the subject matter, and would be taken to the search results. This way one would see what other similar topics are already running, prior to posting. No search up front, no post allowed. With the sophistication of this site, I am surprised actually that this has not already been incorporated here to help eliminate recurring topics.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 05:03 PM
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great idea...

it will be very useful...





posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 05:04 PM
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Originally posted by TrueAmerican
Any chance of incorporating a "forced search" function prior to allowing the posting of a new thread?



This is good and it's certainly what certain Mods have advocated too, search by compulsion.

I think it's also common sense and common courtesy.

Or, instead, when you walk into a crowded room, you could neglect to listen to the tone of the conversation and what people are talking about and what they know about it, and just butt in with your pet subject at whatever point you feel like it.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 05:21 PM
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forced search before posting?!?? you people are making this way too complicated.




posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 05:34 PM
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Well paperclip, it has been stated over and over on ATS that before starting a thread a poster should search, and yet still so many people just disregard this and jump right in and post whatever is on their mind. And despite the great job the admins and mods do of eliminating repeat topics, still many get through. I think the parallel that MA put up about this sums up nicely what these people are actually doing:


Or, instead, when you walk into a crowded room, you could neglect to listen to the tone of the conversation and what people are talking about and what they know about it, and just butt in with your pet subject at whatever point you feel like it.


That is in essence what they are doing when they post new topics on a board as large as ATS without searching first- they are being rude, because they are pretty much ignoring what has been said on the topic before.

Life is complicated. ATS is complicated. Searching is complicated. But a necessary evil. And since they have tried the polite method of simply asking posters to take heed of the advice, to limited avail, maybe it is time that a forced search be implemented. Seems pretty simple to me.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 07:01 PM
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Originally posted by paperclip
forced search before posting?!?? you people are making this way too complicated.

That's pretty much the exact opposite of the tone and concept of the first post in this thread.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 07:55 PM
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WWWEEEEEEEE where having fun now........no seriously it this going to work or cause more problems , it seems a little of both to me. See i have noticed when ever threads are moved or closed , that the person posting it heads right to the board discussion forum and starts getting riled, that is the down side.....The up side ll fresh topics but how long can we come up with new topics before we run out of things to talk about. I am not saying every single thing in the world will have been covered but for the greater part people dont want to know every thing only those popular to their peers. This facilitates connections and bonds.



posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 08:38 PM
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Originally posted by drbryankkruta
The up side ll fresh topics but how long can we come up with new topics before we run out of things to talk about.


I don't see any problem with the old philosophy of "a fresh take" on existing subject matter. I am just concerned that a revolving door policy on topics leads to rehash of the same actual information over and over, without reference to any baseline because there are X million posts already, and there is no "fresh take", and that could lead to a revolving door tendency for members who have seen it all before.

Things don't have to be polar opposites.

There is a balance between expecting member courtesy in adapting to existing discussions, and a policy like the one documented here which eases the pressure on Moderators in dealing with inevitable reposting in a free-flow forum.



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