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4:18 PM
@QuintinBalsdon I hope you understand my point about not chastising other people for making comments that you may consider harsh, but are hardly offensive or inappropriate. To me the issue with curtness is that I have a significant amount of knowledge I am willing to share but I do not have time to hold everyone's hand while doing it; likely this is why you find S.O. "rancid". There is a evolutionary history there. This is sort of the mean [pun] the online technical
community has arrived at. If you are not familiar with the internet classic How to ask Questions the Smart Way, it is worth a look.
The author, E. S. Raymond, was a formative voice in the development of the open source movement and author of The Cathedral and the Bazaar, also worth googling.
Anyway, good cop bad cop is I think a common enough trope; I feel I play one or the other all the time. However, it defeats the purpose if the good cop calls the bad cop bad (unless s/he is really genuinely inappropriate) or vice versa. Point being, if you think someone is being a tad mean, come in with your own attitude and address the topic at hand. Kwasmitch has a right to express his opinion in a reasonable way (which he did) without someone sabotaging the discussion with inflated politics.
@bobstro Dunno if you have any thoughts about this ^^^ Particularly if you like to play the good cop. There are already limits enforced here on behaviour if people are rude to the point of offensiveness. Beyond that, putting an effort into pragmatically being the kind of example you would prefer is more constructive than engaging in meta discussion about the behavior of other people (at least in Q&A comments).
 
4:51 PM
I understand everything you're saying, but it might also be useful to spend a moment contemplating the ongoing meta discussion "Why is it that the Raspberry Pi stack exchange does not seem that active?". Not every SE is run this way, nor does one have to be run this way to be successful. Witness this discussion in travel: travel.stackexchange.com/a/108449/33006
My question in response would be "does being the bad come further the aims for this SE?"
and by "bad come", I mean "bad cop" of course.
 
@bobstro I think the less technical sites (such as travel) have a tremendous advantage in the sense that it is much, much, much, much easier for people to get answers to their questions. Our #1 problem hands down in terms of activity is that not enough people are providing accurate answers because not enough people can. That is not a matter of attitude or desire.
Anyway, I'd be happy to continue this but I have to run in a few minutes...
So, e.g, if we had three more joans, then we could handle a better percentage of the questions and have a more active site. But that is not because joan is particularly into community building or not, AFAICT, if you get my point.
@bobstro No, I would not argue that it does all by itself. However, I really think a lot of it is about interpretation of curtness (going back to joan -- is s/he a bad person sometimes? or just curt because of what I was saying about the use of time?), which is why I brought up the E.S. Raymond thing. He really goes a long way to indicate that you need a tough skin if you want to do this. If you could have a site like this and pay a bunch of people to site around and politely deal with
everyone...but that is not the reality of crowd sourcing tech.
 
5:42 PM
I'm familiar with joan, but this discussion was specifically triggered by the comment "Obviously you did no prior research." This is an ad-hominem attack -- it is an attack, not just being curt -- against a potential new participant of whom the respondent -- kwasmich in this case -- has absolutely no knowledge.
We don't know, based on the post, whether the OP is lazy, not fluent in english, or just trying to identify the correct terminology to use. This smacks of every crappy linux IRC channel, and seems to be to be contradictory to SE's goal of encouraging questions and providing answers with long-term value.
3
Another problem is that even the best of answers age-out quickly, particularly in the world of RPi, where not only OS changes, but underlying hardware changes occur relatively quickly. Expecting users to know enough "ask questions the smart way" assumes they've read that article. Nothing wrong with pointing them to it, but there's no need to be insulting.
 
5:56 PM
It's worth remembering that RPi's scope fundamentally appeals to beginners more than Linux/electronics/whatever experts... Many of the site's problems have an explanation rooted in that.
For example, users new to RPi are also probably new to asking technical questions on an online site. So they're less likely to be aware of the etiquette, the expectations, etc.
And the fact that we get far more beginners than experts also explains why the site appears so inactive — fundamentally, the site is more active in terms of questions/day than many other sites that I'd call 'more active' than RPi
It's just there are far more beginners asking questions than experts answering
There are far fewer users in the 'middle classes' of rep than on other sites, so there's much more demand for the few who do regularly stick around and answer.
 
 
1 hour later…
7:24 PM
@bobstro I'm not so much defending how this was put as the point that's being made, and that someone should be allowed to get negative like that if they want. Also, to the extent that that is not constructive, bickering about it in comments isn't either -- it is easy to be positive (for some of us, anyway) and through that present a contrasting attitude where the subject matter is still on topic (this is what I meant by taking the good cop role without lambasting the bad cop).
As a contemporary analogy :D I think the American media's addiction to spending hours on every Trump tweet plays more into Trump's very negative agenda that it does one than is about positivity. (But positive about what? Fortunately here we have some pretty straightforward bounds),
@Aurora0001 Yes, this is consequent of our stingy voting. That is also a very tough problem to solve. Part of it is I think because the beginner's that earn enough rep don't stick around once their own problems get solved because they realise they don't have much to offer in the way of expertise.
 
8:12 PM
This may indeed be a topic for our times. I disagree that this is a "bad cop - good cop" situation, in that we're not out to discover "the truth" that OP is witholding, but rather, we're hoping to help the OP discover that truth. By not calling out bad behavior, we're tacitly signaling that slights and insults are OK. Being a bit terse is fine. Hell, ignore the posts that annoy you. I think jumping on someone we don't know is a bad signal.
 
@goldilocks That's along the lines of what I'm thinking too (the fact that beginners don't have much to share in terms of answers). I think the dynamics here on RPi aren't too dissimilar to SO... except that SO has order of magnitudes more answerers to balance the problem
@bobstro I'm pretty much in agreement. While it may be true, and in fact obvious, that some users do very little research before asking, it generally isn't useful to complain about that, or even be rude about it. Either the question is answerable without research, in which case that's fine, or it's not answerable, in which case asking for research might be helpful.
The discussion on Should Stack Overflow (and Stack Exchange in general) be awarding “A”s for Effort? is relatively interesting and worth reading if you have time
 
9:00 PM
Well, after all that I am feeling bad that I did not play a more positive role. Note to bear: chill out ;) However, I still think "Obviously you did not google...", while not overly friendly, is not really "jumping on someone" in a strong way, esp. since kwasmich did not add anything more. And that asking "Are there any Pis with SATA?" does not fall under the umbrella of "well, it isn't in the docs", etc. This is something very easy to solve with a search engine and I think there does
need to be some bar WRT question quality. However, again, I regret that I got caught up in the meta stuff I've criticised here, and failed to put the situation to the OP in polite terms.
A little burnt out in that department -- but y'all are right, if you can't muster the niceness maybe move on.
 
A nice edit on that touchscreen question, @goldilocks... I was about to flag as duplicates, but realised they're so old it's not really worth duping it.
And re the comments issue, I certainly don't think you've acted at all unreasonably; just that we probably have slightly different opinions on where the line lies, that's all.
One could certainly delete the first sentence and have a reasonable comment (although some sites would delete that too as an answer in a comment... but that's an entirely different can of worms :P)
 

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