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11:51 AM
I want an SE (esp. SO) with stronger guidance (and gating) before letting people ask questions. I browsed SO a bit more than before for some days, and almost all the questions there warrant requests for more details on what the asker has, an actually complete example code that really compiles, etc.
 
Yeah. But that would not be welcoming D:
 
There is that little popup box that comes in the "Ask question" page, which says, among other things, "When appropriate, show some code". Like that helps on SO, when 99.9 % of the time, showing code is not just appropriate, but necessary.
Also, the system could present the basic troubleshooting steps like "enable compiler warnings and read them (gcc -Wall)" before actually having people waste time to tell the asker to do that.
Maybe I have a cultural barrier here, but I don't see how it's more welcoming that an actual human has to do it, when the steps are actually necessary for anyone to be able to help...
 
There's some tag-based guidance like that
 
ooh
I should ask questions sometimes, then, I suppose ;DD
 
@ilkkachu beause it's not the company's responsibility this way. "Oh, we're sorry you were piled upon by a gang of toxic nerds, but we didn't do anything wrong. Please click these ads now."
 
11:55 AM
"Many similarly phrased questions have received feedback like downvotes or requests for improvements." -- oh, wow. this is great.
 
And they're not financially motivated to care about question quality. They literally only care about traffic.
@ilkkachu do you know the recent one that prompted that?
 
@AndrasDeak nope
 
in CHATLAB and Talktave on Stack Overflow Chat, 20 hours ago, by Andras Deak
https://meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/405582/is-downvoting-harmful-and-should-it-be-removed-completely -> https://meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/405671/suggestion-canonical-community-wiki-why-stack-overflow-has-uses-allows-downvot
hmm, perhaps you were talking about a different post
 
@AndrasDeak eh, quality brings traffic so if they cared about traffic they'd also care about quality. But if you take the cynical view, the company simply doesn't care about public Q&A. They make no money from that, it is nothing more than a way to get customers for their paid products.
 
@ilkkachu what's that from? I was biased by that recent meta discussion, but you were probably talking about something else
@terdon I always take the cynical view :P
 
11:57 AM
@AndrasDeak I got that notice when posting a question.
So, I have to take some of my words back.
 
@ilkkachu oooh, got it, sorry
 
It does complain before posting a question :)
 
there was a recentish redesign of the ask page, might have helped with that
 
Now, individuals in the company care very much. And the company itself has been doing a lot of work to come back to the public Q&A: they've allocated developers, hired more community managers, greatly increased engagement with the community etc. So things have improved. But as far as Corporate is concerned, Q&A is not the main product.
@ilkkachu there'as also a new asking wizard on SO for new users isn't there? They've been doing quite a bit of work trying to find ways to improve this issue.
 
@terdon "allocated developers", perhaps they shouldn't have fired them all in the first place
 
11:59 AM
@AndrasDeak No argument there. Although they didn't fire so many devs.
Also my bad, the wizard thing has been removed:
73
Q: The new ask page is now live on the network!

JNatAfter rolling it out to the International Stack Overflow sites last week, we're rolling out the new ask page to the whole network today. The new page was designed with the goal of helping new askers by more readily presenting them with tips on how to improve their question. This is a combination ...

 
@terdon Will have to test. I was mostly musing based on the questions I actually saw on site.
Because it looked like there was not much in the way of gating.
At least with my account that complaint about the title was all I got, no tag-based suggestions before offering the "Post question" button
 
@ilkkachu You'd be surprised at how many hoops users are willing to go to in order to avoid making their question useful. I had actually reported a bug at some point because a question had been posted with "Enter your question title here" as a title. So I assumed the system allowed you to submit without changing the boilerplate.
 
:DD
 
It turns out the boilerplate is never included, so that user had actually manually copied that out and put it as the question title.
 
exactly
 
12:02 PM
There's nothing you can do with people like that.
 
Idiot proof your system and the world will create a bigger idiot
 
4
Q: Don't allow questions to be asked with no title

terdonThis is a bug: The OP just wrote the body of their question without actually writing a title. The result, as you can see in the image above, is a singularly useless title. This shouldn't be allowed. If a user posts a question without having typed anything in the title box, a warning should be ...

 
@ilkkachu there's definitely a rep factor
@terdon at least the next ignoramus will have to edit that title a bit...
@terdon yeah, only something like 25% in one sitting? Although I'm not good with remembering numbers, so that might be off.
 
@AndrasDeak this one manually copied it.
 
Yes, but the next one can't use the exact same title...
 
12:04 PM
@terdon yeah but ^
 
@AndrasDeak Oh, that one. Well, that was kind of different in that the company was having trouble and didn't have much of a choice. This was back when the company was much smaller and employees and mods had much more contact and it was a seriously painful period for them.
A very different situation to the more recent (last year) spate of firings.
@ilkkachu why not?
 
@terdon The system doesn't let you.
 
Do what? Use "What's your Ubuntu question? Be specific" as a title?
 
I mean, it doesn't seem let you use a title that is the same as that of an existing question :)
 
Ah, OK. It doesn't?
 
12:06 PM
I stumbled on that just a while ago trying to change the title of one Q on unix.SE to be more on point
got "no, sorry, that question already exists"
 
Huh. That's new to me. Probably a good idea though.
 
Anyway, I was thinking on the lines of mandatory account creation (SO seems to demand that, though), with email verification, plus a mandatory waiting time before registration to actually being able to post a question, which the user could then use to review the materials sent to them about what maketh a good question, and why we need that sort of thing, AND a mandatory automated quiz they need to get right before the question is accepted ;)
 
Anyway, the company really has been making real efforts to improve. There's still a long way to go, but they no longer seem to consider public Q&A as a nuisance that should be ignored or gotten rid of but have instead accepted it is an important part of their system.
 
And I know, then they'll make bots to circumvent the quiz 🤦 :)
 
12:31 PM
I wonder if some users realise what “BS” conjures up in (I suspect) many readers’ minds
 
I'm not sure I can parse that correctly?
 
@ilkkachu some users include “BS” at the end of their name (I think this is an Indian or Pakistani usage), presumably to represent their degree
 
12:46 PM
ah, that, yes
It is sort of amusing. And makes me wonder if they're unfamiliar with the negative meaning in the US/Western sphere, or just don't care.
 
1:07 PM
@ilkkachu yeah, but unregistered answers are still a thing
 
@AndrasDeak are they such a big deal?
 
 
1 hour later…
2:36 PM
I might actually get a great answer badge even though the answer is mediocre at best
 
 
4 hours later…
6:57 PM
very nice!
just now noticed a new botton added to access review queues on mobile view
 
 
2 hours later…
9:02 PM
@αғsнιη might have to do with meta.stackexchange.com/questions/360198/…
 
9:25 PM
hmm, maybe, but I didn't find any feature request for that, and some posts from very old 2013, 2014 was there in meta, but no feedback on those
@AndrasDeak but that is cool now, everytime it was needed to switch to desktop view, do some review and back to mobile view
not much difficult but it was a bit hard :D
 

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