Rules and Policies - "Necroposting"

Discussion in 'Feedback & Support Forum' started by Selezen, May 23, 2013.

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  1. Selezen

    Selezen Member

    I'm starting a topic that may come across as slightly "wanna change the world" here, and if that's how it's taken then I apologise. The topic of resurrecting old threads on a forum is one that I have been familiar with on many forums, and it's always a loaded question. I was given the choice to continue this conversation via PMs with the admins or through a public thread. I chose the latter as it would perhaps benefit me to read what other members' opinions are too.

    To recap:

    I'd like to comment on several points in the previous post, most of which rotate around this part:
    It's a great idea, but (taking myself into consideration here) not every member may have the time or resources to build each downloaded model right away but may still want to show their appreciation to the original poster. A forum with a new thread for each thank you would soon become a huge beast that would be a nightmare to search. I think it's easier on the users and easier on the site's database to leave the original post there and allow it to be updated if/when a new person wants to show their appreciation.

    Yes, there's a risk that spammers MIGHT decide to use that as an easy way yo boost their post count, but there are other ways too. You as moderators/admins already do a fantastic job on the forum in regards to instructing newcomers on the expectations of the forum members and making sure that only the best-of-the-best can contribute.

    I don't think the library analogy is a good one for this site. The forum is a showcase for models and talent and is, to be honest, the only place where continuing an old thread is considered bad form. No conversation is really complete like a book would be, and adding notes or comments to a thread is akin to signing a guestbook for that model and its achievements. Yes, a new thread for a build of that model is (and should be) standard practice but having potentially hundreds of threads saying "thanks" over several years could be a lot to manage and could result in a lot of maintenance for you later.

    Having one thread for the model source itself and any associated updates to it (possibly maintained by that original poster initially) would seem to be the more "site-friendly" option. Perhaps, if I can be so bold to suggest this, the original thread can be made into a one-stop resource for updates to the model, news about it or its availability and links to the build threads? As I said, not everyone may have news of a build on a model they have started themselves but still want to show their appreciation for it, and this should be applauded.

    Speaking as a strictly software-development oriented person for a moment, the database for the forum will also take a serious hit from a policy that prefers a new thread for any comment on an old topic. Each new thread is a new line in a database with a new internal join to set of posts in another table. Every time this is done, a person searching the site adds another two inner joins to the SQL query that will bring back the results, and will result in a much slower response time. Not to mention potentially bloating the database.

    Simply put:
    • Necroposting = 1 row in the whole database, 1 row added to the search result
    • New thread = 1 row added to two tables, two inner joins added to search query.

    This hit will occur any time anyone searches the forum but will also occur any time google or another search engine hits the site (if, of course, that is allowed).

    Lots of relatively small niggles, I know, but I think they're worth considering as a whole and at least discussing and I hope this post is taken in the spirit it is given. I love this forum and the people on it, even though I stay pretty quiet and don't contribute as much as I would like to (mainly because of my lack of time and resources recently, especially after taking on a book writing project) and I think that any talent showcased here should have the maximum chance of exposure even if it's just a quick thank you. Without spamming, of course.

  2. zathros

    zathros -----SENIOR---- Administrator

    The best way that a person can give thanks for a model is sending a P.M. to the model designer and giving thanks. The onus is on the person who wishes to give thanks. We do enough here. You have no idea how hard it is to read every single post on this forum and still have a life. I do read virtually every single post. With Rhaven now doing Admin, and Silveroxide moderating, I have been able to back off.

    This forum does not charge for membership, or, for hosting anybody's models. You can upload pictures here without having to use a photo hosting website.

    The library analogy is an appropriate one. When someone does a design thread, and in the end, offers the model for download, there is a certain amount of responses and then the thread usually dies. The model , if located here, is easily found in our Downloads Section. I suggested that you not engage in hyperbole, as it leads to ridiculous never ending tangents. When the model is complete, and the comments fade off, after 3 months, the thread is dead. Those offering their Thanks have done so. A 5 or 6 year old late "Thanks" is not worth adding extra work for me, or anyone else who runs this forum, and as I have stated, it is usually a SPAMMER. We do not get paid or compensated in anyway for this.

    As I stated earlier, the best compliment is making the model and posting pictures. If you can't do that, then their is no urgency in your thanks, and when you finally get to making the model, your thread will be there as a demonstration of your thanks. If you never build it, well, why does downloading the model, and giving a "Thanks" in a 6 year old dead thread matter? The person hosting the model knows how may people have downloaded his model, he does not need this forum to keep track of that. We do keep track of the models downloaded, so any member simply needs to look at their model in the "Downloads Section", and they will that information.

    The thread is done when the Original Poster has stopped posting in it and those following it have posted their comments.. For a three month period, we allow people to post their "Thanks" or any other comment. That's it. The amount of posts in "dead threads" that actually offer anything new is miniscule. The vast majority of the time, posting in "dead threads" is done by SPAMMERS or people trying to boost their post count to gain access to the "Downloads Section", that is fact.

    I am not sure what you mean by "the only place where continuing a thread is considered bad form". There was mention on another forum that they did not care about people posting in old threads. That was a very recent development. When I was there, people were regularly chastised for posting in old threads.

    I put the onus to Thank the designer of the model on the person who downloaded the model, and this is best and more personally done, by a Private Message, after the thread has died.

    This simple formula works, and works well. I took the ridiculously long WarHammer40K post and made it into a subsection of the forum. A few people complain, at first, but the overwhelming consensus has been it was the right thing to do, and now it is far easier to find WarHammer40K models.

    This is how the system is going to stay in regards to dead threads. I ran this forum for almost a year by myself, and I know from what is going on in front and back of the forum, that this is the best way to do it.

    As far as maximum chance of exposure, we do that. Allowing the new build thread of the model gives maximum exposure to the person building the forum. I do not want threads with multiple builds from different people, and in fact, do not allow it.

    You seem to have misunderstood, I do not allow separate threads for saying "Thank You" on a dead thread. such a post would disappear as fast as it was made, and in actuality no one does that. A new build thread, by someone else building the same model is what we want. A show case for individuals who have either designed and built their models, and for model builders who build these models. Each having their time in the lime light. An ever lasting thread with 100 pages, where navigating and trying to find something on it, is impossible to manage, or use.

    Having people post their own personal build threads is not bloating the database, it is the reason we do what we do here.

    To wrap it up, there will be no long, ever ending threads open except to the original poster.

    3 months, after the last post, the thread is dead. Send a P.M. if you want to thank the designer. Build the model better yet.

    This is a solution to a non existent problem. No one has ever complained about it. No one is penalized. This is the way we maintain the forum. If 10 people want to each build the same model of a P-51 Mustang, they each have their own thread, showing their technique, and overall experience. Should I merge all those threads because it is the same subject, no, of course not. If 10 designers design the same thing, should I merge their threads? No, of course not. If all 10 offer their designs for free, should I merge all their models into one download, again, no.

    I believe I have answered all issues involved with this. This is ZEALOT, and this is the way we do it here. Every individual has the opportunity to post and do the same thing that any other member does.

    If someone gets so angered that their 4 or 4 year old belated "Thanks" is now allowed, then they really have a very light load on them, and need to fulfill themselves, maybe with building a model.

    Any further comments are welcomed, by if they have to do with proprietary issues concerning the running of the forum, you will be reminded that the rule was there for many many years, if not a decade, and you agreed to it when you joined, so not posting in dead threads is anything new, not by a long shot.
  3. Selezen

    Selezen Member

    Fair enough then, thanks for allowing me to voice my opinion.

    If I can be allowed one last comment - I simply think that there could and should be more scope for people to express their thanks than being more or less restricted to "if you build it they will approve" or creating a thread just for that purpose if you haven't begun a build.

    I download models quite often because the intent to build is there, but the time to build is not - often the model is downloaded because I like to think that there could be a chance in the future to give the model the construction time it deserves.

    In the meantime I get a great deal of pleasure and satisfaction (no dirty comments please) from just looking at the model template and appreciating the work that has gone into it. I see card model making as an art form, where the true talent and ability of that designer is just as unique and important as any artworks hanging in an art gallery.

    Seeing the model built is the ultimate goal, but looking into the images, PDFs or PDOs and seeing the detail there in its pristine glory without the restrictions on the media imposed by a printer's resolution is just as interesting to me as the build process. And I think there should be ways to express thanks for that enjoyment as well as the enjoyment many of the forum get from printing, cutting and gluing.

    I don't know if I'm alone in this opinion, but I would rather necropost and fire off a quick thanks here (and to the author him/herself if possible or practical) than start a new thread to do the same. The technical matters aside, forums to me are, despite their social nature, quite personal experiences, and the thought that goes through my head is that creating a new thread just for a single "thank you" would be a worse act of spamming than a single post and something that I as a forum member would find more irritating. I do have to admit that in voicing this opinion I didn't expect to be met with as strict and unbending a standpoint as has been voiced in rebuttal.

    I know the rules are clear on the matter, and I do intend to treat them objectively, but I just felt that for once the subjective opinion was worth mentioning, and thank you for indulging me. No offence or criticism of policy is intended, merely an exchange of opinion. I have a LOT of respect for the admin/moderation team here and the job they do!

  4. there is another way to express how much you like a thread (and of course its contents): by clicking "rate thread" on the top right. You can give as many stars as you want. Although very few people use it, those who rate threads really mean it ;)
  5. micahrogers

    micahrogers Active Member

    This was my "learn something new every day" moment for today. I had never even noticed the "Rate Thread" key.

    As for the necroposting issue... I remember when I first joined Zealot in May of last year, I was overwhelmed by the number of posts. I just picked one category a night and read all the "current" posts. my idea of current was 2 weeks old...
  6. inky

    inky Member

    I like necroposting, I have been here for a while but have not seen all the threads. When I sign in every day I do not go to one topic, I hit the, "New Post" button and just read the new posts. Like the other day, I did not know we had a thread on Alfonso's ISS build and I would have never known if some one wouldn't have necroposted the thread.

    If you want my two cents....we hare here to have fun, who cares if some one post in a thread that is a few months or a year old, that's what a forum is for, to post comments.
  7. zathros

    zathros -----SENIOR---- Administrator

    No one has seen any of my models posted. I don't release models. The people who I have made model parts for, or small models for to help them in a diorama or something, know what I am capable of, and how I contribute. The best appreciation I ever get is when someone sends me a P.M. and Thanks me, personally, for either helping them, building a part for them, finding a model for them or, teaching them how to make the part for themselves. No one's limited in expressing their gratitude to anyone here. It is just in the one instance, the "dead threads", is where all of out trouble has come from. We allow people to EDIT their posts whenever they wish. Most other forums set a limit to that. We don't. I have seen people post insults to other members, then delete them when the other member had read it. I know this, because by the time the person insulted had contacted me, I had banned the person doing the insulting. If I need to BAN someone quick, I have to BAN them for SPAM, but they get the real reason, anyone who states differently is a liar. This is being worked on and we do now have a method for banning people who come here for some imagined gripe, and do not do it correctly. This forums is far more personal than virtually any other forum I have belonged too. This is what we want. That is why there is no fighting here. No insults, none of the stuff that just make some forums that had great potential, become cliquish and not pleasant to be members of anymore,, without having to put people on ignore lists, and then see them continue to cast insults. People have cast insults on me whom I have never know, or had interactions with. We regularly get attacked but we do not respond. When I say we, I mean "us", the members. I get PM's from people writing, did you hear what they are writing about us now? I always say the same thing, living good is the best revenge. I believe that this type of behavior is coming to an end as all we want to do is offer people an opportunity to engage in this hobby.

    I do understand looking at a model template, and building it in your mind. I have no problem with that. I do it often.

    Also, it is not that your opinion was met with an unbending standpoint, it is just that this issue was decided and settled, it is a closed issue and is now the way it is done here. On that particular issue, we have decided, quite some time ago, we were going to take a course of action based on what was happening, and it has worked excellently. I invited you to continue the discussion to explain the reasons.

    I stated before, we do not allow that "than start a new thread to do the same". If you wish to thank someone, Thank them when they finish building the model, or send them a P.M., but the condition you stated in that quote has never been proposed or done by anyone here, and such threads would be unapproved, followed with a P.M. telling the person to send P.M.'s to the people involved. This has never happened before. Also, you don't have to wait 5 years to thank them. Please realize the time scales we are working with. We rarely say anything on something posted on a model completed less than a year. The average time that a person who posts in a dead thread to say "Thanks", or "cool", is 4 years. Again, this is the reality here, and the forum is set up for what happens here. We have , in y opinion, one of the best groups of people posting than I have ever seen. I think the guidelines had something to do with it, and I also believe that the equal enforcement, and the absolute intolerance of allowing insults has helped. The members have made this forum great.

    The forum is not set up on hypothesis, or conjecture. It is set up on the history of evens that have occurred here.

    You can express thanks to anyone for any reason on this forum by sending a P.M.. That way, you know they got it. Not everything has to be done in public.

    I had thought of have a designers corner but when the designer head got so big, and his work is excellent, masterful, and unequaled, but the ego that came along with it was too damaging to the forum. so he got himself booted. He requested it as I was doing it, so the feelings were mutual. I know most of the major paper model designers and many of them post here. Right now, we are working on having all the problems the forum had, like not being able to search the "Downloads" section, which you can now, worked out. I believe almost everything is.

    If you feel you have more to say, feel free too. This thread is not closed, there is no argument. The discussion is fine. You do know that you can go to the designers message board and leave a message there, and they will get a notice that they have a message. Just click on their name, click on "View Public Profile" Then type in your message.
  8. zathros

    zathros -----SENIOR---- Administrator

    That thread is not a thread that can be ever considered a "necroposted" thread, because Alfonso, a pillar of the community, announces many of his updates there, and many builders, show their work, and express their gratitude there. That thread is an example of how a thread can last for many years and never die. It is an active thread because the designer is still working on the designs, as a matter of fact, I posted one post before yours. That thread hardly falls into the one word "Thanks" post in a 5 year old dead category. I also stated a while back that discovering a model, buried deep in the forum, with a working link, worded intellectually, (allowing for the variances of intellect) would be considered a resurrection of a thread, and I myself have resurrected a few. Judicious use of common sense will make any post proper and accepted. I am kind of broke, so, can I have the 2 cents now?:mrgreen:
  9. goodduck

    goodduck Active Member

    What!? I don't know I can rate thread! :mrgreen:
  10. zathros

    zathros -----SENIOR---- Administrator

    Too bad we couldn't "Rate" posts, I give you 5 stars for that one! :):p
  11. goodduck

    goodduck Active Member

    you know what that means.... some people will goes rate happy and some will goes " WTF! I only get one star!? HA! HA!
  12. When acknowledging some people's work, I refrain from necroposting as much as possible. If it is a very old thread chances are that nothing new or useful may be shared.

    However, in some very special cases when I think certain thread is important and has useful content, I try to revive it. That is, if it is not sticky, and has some special tricks or information not available elsewhere in a forum. Some building threads are very inspirational, but tend to be forgotten, and don't receive the recognition they deserve.

    hmmm... True.
    And if a person holds some grudge against another member, may use the rating system as a weapon, giving only one star to depreciate the other member's threads. I've seen that in other kind of forums. But modellers tend to be more serious.

    I usually rate a thread when I feel it deserves at least four or five stars. Whether it is because of the useful information, or the beauty of a build. Only in a couple of sad ocassions I've rated one star only, when I felt the thread derailed beyond any hope. Or to express my disagreement with the contents.

    Sadly I tend to foget about the stars, and just use them once or twice a month. Sometimes less.
  13. zathros

    zathros -----SENIOR---- Administrator

    I suggest that we put stars on our bellies, or not. Some may not want stars on their bellies, while others will want a lot. :)

  14. Selezen

    Selezen Member

    vBulletin does have a way to rate posts - it's called "reputation". It adds a little "scales of justice" icon to the post's header and allows a +1 or -1 to reputation, which the poster accumulates. It works well, and the reputation entries can only be seen by the poster himself (although I'm not sure if there are any ways to make it more visible). The only thing the other forum members will see is a little green box with a summary of the reputation that user has gained (usually something like "Such-and-such is on a distinguished road").

    As far as the debate over necroposting goes, if it's a "closed issue" does that mean that any future debate over forum policy by members will be met with the same? Is the process of change and evolution not allowed because the mods and admins spake thus? I'm not in favour of change for change's sake, but may I respectfully suggest a poll? See if the members feel the same way as you.

    I'm happy to acquiesce to the decisions of the leadership team, however. It was but a suggestion prompted by what I felt was an unfair admonishment to a member who attempted to display appreciation for something. :)
  15. zathros

    zathros -----SENIOR---- Administrator

    That is not fair and consistent with the way this forum operates. Do we have to now go down every single rule, ever couple of weeks? No. This is a paper model forum. I am not sure what process of change and evolution should be expected. Build a model, post some pictures, don't build a model, look around, post a comment now and then. Pretty laid back. Our policies are really laid back. If something new was introduced, it is usually done so after consideration by members whom we have known for many years, and the owners of the forum. No more dealing with theoretical considerations. The language barrier between American and English is such that you took an admonishment of what I took felt was an expression of why we have the rules the way we have them. No one gets banned, there is no demerit system.

    In short, by the way I explained it, Yes, you will be met with a thorough explanation of why we do what we do, the reasons for it, if there is a technical limitation, you will be told that. No one here is on an ego trip. We just run the forum the way that is the most functional. We do not get paid for this. I left the forum for a month or so and it nose dived. I'm back. I don't ask anything of anyone. No one was unfairly admonished. There was given, by me, a thorough explanation. That is hardly an admonishment. I did not want this conversation taking place in a build thread, which corrupted that old thread with a debate about posting in old threads, which had nothing to do with that threads topic, which also proves my point. There will be no "Poll", this is not a democracy, it is a paper model forum. That is all it is. This forum has evolved greatly and from the feedback I have received, positively. I know because I spearheaded that change evolution, with the help of people I trust. I have received many many P.M.'s and e-mails from people in support of what has been done here.

    I do not want archived threads posted in unless it adds something substantial to that thread. I have stated quite reasonably and clearly the reasons why. We, the people who administer this forum are in agreement. Just let it go.

    In the theoretical, we deal with situations as they come up, in that sense, the administration of this forum is always listening. I read every single post on this forum, every single one. I have a good idea of what is going on here, as I know Rhaven Blaaack and Silveroxide does. This issue is closed. it has been beat to death. Real issues can always be brought up, but not theoretical. Life is too short. Not one other person has brought this up as an issue of concern, not one. I am now going to close the thread, so that others, who wish to start trouble in this forum (not anyone in this thread) will not take the opportunity to start up any trouble. I can always be reached by P.M..
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