Carping Tone

  phoenix198 08:55 24 May 2004

Am I alone in noticing an increasingly carping tone creeping into these forums?

I'm not talking about legitimate customer grievances against suppliers, or even not so legimate ones, but about the negative, argumentative, sometimes ill-tempered and even snide tone being adopted by some regular posters towards posts that don't conform to their particular view or opinion.

These forums are an absolute goldmine of useful information and guidance, but not necessarily more so than some other 'techie' sites which are frequently referred to. Its just that too may of these other site forums are overrun by smart alecs who seem to take a malicious delight in deriding 'noobs' or anyone else they consider to have an 'inferior' knowledge of computing or whose views they either don't understand or won't understand.

What has made these forums special (for me, anyway) is the friendly, helpful and supportive nature of the great majority of posters, most of whom have a more relaxed, calm and mature approach to the world. There is an air of mutual respect between regular posters which is readily and willingly extended to newcomers.

Lately, however, there seems to be a growing air of grumpiness, intolerance and even rudeness in some of the posts - even (or perhaps most noticeably) from one or two of the stalwarts.

No names, no pack drill, but might I suggest that we all take a good deep breath before posting?

  g0slp 09:16 24 May 2004

The 'less than wholesome' user IDs which seem to be creeping in are becoming more common too.

This is supposed to be a 'family friendly' forum, and has always prided itself as being such

  €dstowe 09:18 24 May 2004

If you are going to accuse, surely you can present some evidence otherwise, the guilty are going to think it's someone else and the innocent are going to think it's them.

Let's have some examples and then perhaps the accused can defend themselves (or not bother, as they see fit).

If I am one of the accused, you have my full permission to point the forum in the direction of any of my posts that you consider have a "carping tone".


  €dstowe 09:19 24 May 2004

NB. I agree with g0slp's post.


  phoenix198 10:19 24 May 2004

Sorry for delay in reply, its taken me this long to figure out how to insert a Euro character!

I take your point about 'putting up or shutting up'. That said, it's not my style to name and shame individuals in a public forum as this more often than not develops into an accusation/counter accusation flame war, thus dragging the tone down further.

We might disagree on this, but I think that this is one of those occasions when 'if the cap fits, wear it' is the best approach, the intent being to encourage and nurture civility rather than directly castigate the uncivil.

I agree with you that this approach will likely be ignored by some of the more crass posters but these individuals tend to be put in their place by the 'old hands' - that's what is so good about these forums, they tend to be self-policing.

I have to say that this thread is actually directed at a few of the 'old hands' who seem to be in desparate need of a holiday!

  wee eddie 10:37 24 May 2004

I would say that I agree with the general tone of the posting, but I feel that there is sometimes good reason for an element of grumpiness. I will give a couple of examples.

Threads that are similar to several others in the past couple of days: e.g. No attempt to search the threads has been done, either by checking ack or by using the search function.

Posters who ignore advice given and keep coming back with the same problem having not tried solutions offered.

  ch0pper 10:49 24 May 2004

To be fair, When I've tried to use the 'Search' function I usually come up with an empty space. Perhaps I need a lesson in 'keywords', but my tired old PhD-stuffed brain is reaching the limits of its capapcity for new knowledge. (you should see my struggling to learn MacOS on my recently acquired PowerMac G5. Whoever told Apple that it was all very intuitive ....).

I have been overwhelmed by the advice, and the speed of advice, that is offered within these forum(fora???).

Indeed, I'm rather grateful that people with seemingly immense levels of very arcane knowledge are prepared to help and point one in the right direction.

On several occasions the solution to seemingly intractable problems has been but a mouse-click away.

  only me 11:04 24 May 2004

surely F E should look into this, and ask for constructive and destructive advice and delete bad advice

  only me 11:08 24 May 2004

insert" not destructive" sorry!!

  Stuartli 14:23 24 May 2004

As one who occasionally lets rip, may I say much of it is to do with the fact that some of those who post queries have made no attempt, it would seem, to try and solve the problem first.

The first port of call should always be the Help files, especially in Microsoft programs or applications, as they cover probably 95 per cent or more of problems and provide potential cures.

Secondly the Knowledge Base or Support pages are a goldmine of information, but can prove a rabbit warren to probe at times; however, even better, is to key the problem into Google.

Eight or nine times out of 10 this will bring up a host of potential solutions.

I put it down to laziness in some cases, in others it is likely to be due to inexperience and people still learning how to go about solving difficulties.

I can live with that and am delighted to try and be able to assist.

  ch0pper 15:07 24 May 2004

Google presents the same problem with keyword selection.

I've tried to use Google for problem solving but when faced with thousands of websites all with potential solutions buried in them, I tend to give up.

Frankly, I don't have the time or appetite to trawl through all the listed sites trying to decipher what is in too many ways 'nerd herd' language.

FAQ's and Helpfiles often seem to ve very basic and not specific enough, and trawling the M'Soft Knowledge Base can be a nightmare.

How much more useful it is to post a query and find some experienced soul prepared to say 'look at this tite' or even come up with the answer him/herself.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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