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View Poll Results: Should CF recommend that OP's follow a more useful protocol?
Yes, I'd like less repetition, and to learn what the OP's decided 25 34.25%
No, let them and me blather on without resolution 44 60.27%
I'm an OP and you don't deserve my final decision 4 5.48%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 73. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 14-10-2019, 06:00   #1
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OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

My friends and fellow sailors – I’d like to raise a couple things that would vastly improve our mutual and hopefully more helpful experience. First, I’d like to say that while CF can be incredibly helpful, the opposite can also be true. Examples:

1. OP’s often don’t really take the time to search and find answers or relevent threads that already exist. I must tell you that there are some very professional and useful forums that insist that posters do this – and say so – before they post yet another thread on the same subject.

By burying the forums with yet another post on questions that have been repeatedly answered, not only does this discourage participation, but also makes the job of those of us who do properly search first, makes things harder. Which of the 50 past posts on the same old subject is the one or few that really are complete and beneficial?

2. A prime example of abuse are those absolute dreamers who ask questions like “What is the best way to make my “fill in the blank” dreams come true. The usual suspects and resident expurts will go on for 15 pages of the kind of blather that is better delivered in between beers at the bar. Those who respond are similarly problematical.

Nothing get solved, no definitive answers are given, the information is already there and worse yet: the OP who has encouraged others to take of their time and energy never shares his/her response and decision.

3. Speaking of which: I believe that OP’s have a duty to let those who took much time to post a host of good opinions and info – I believe those OP’s in return owe the rest of us what they finally decided and why. This is VERY important, as then we who responded can benefit from learning from the OP, their rationale and decision.

Those same professional forums I referred to earlier make another demand: the OP’s are required to post “[SOLVED]” or the like, and comment on the solution or decision. Although CF does not allow posters to later change the original subject line of the OP, there is no reason why the OP can’t post their final [DECISION] and their rationale in a final post, or to at least share the final options they are considering.

I believe it is unfair and disrespectful for OP’s to take, but not return. Their decisions and opinions are valuable and denied. A simple “thanks” - nice enough – is not nearly enough. I believe CF needs to make clear that posters must search first, say so, and only then post ending with the OP’s decision and rationale.

Carry on.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:06   #2
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

Well, I have to say, you have certainly put a lot more thought into this than I ever have.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:07   #3
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

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Originally Posted by Capn Jimbo View Post
Those same professional forums I referred to earlier make another demand: the OP’s are required to post “[SOLVED]” or the like, and comment on the solution or decision.
or what? you're banned from CF? Good luck with inforcing that.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:11   #4
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

The way the answers are worded will bias the results of this poll.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:13   #5
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

Quote:
or what? you're banned from CF? Good luck with inforcing that.
Some professional forums do in fact ban repeat abusers. Others use reasonable moderation, and appoint moderators for each sub-forum. Others simply state the protocol and trust/believe that most posters are reasonable and will cooperate.

I believe that most of the posters here are reasonable and would gladly and voluntarily cooperate with a suggested protocol by CF.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:15   #6
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

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The way the answers are worded will bias the results of this poll.
It's often hard for the person writing the polling questions in many polls to not let their bias affect the wording; it doesn't have to be intentional. One of the reasons so many political polls end up being so wrong - the people conducting them, are rarely neutral.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:17   #7
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

I think that better search tools would help. I find it difficult to even find old threads I know of, given what I know to be in them. It would be useful to OPs and a means of quick reference. My opinion, not useful to constrain the heck out of people’s creativity and imagination.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:29   #8
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

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Some professional forums do in fact ban repeat abusers. Others use reasonable moderation, and appoint moderators for each sub-forum. Others simply state the protocol and trust/believe that most posters are reasonable and will cooperate.

I believe that most of the posters here are reasonable and would gladly and voluntarily cooperate with a suggested protocol by CF.
In that case there are a few anchor threads I am still waiting for an answer on.

Although I see your point and finality would be nice for everything, it is just not practical as a requirement.

For example, recently I started a thread asking about pros vs cons on a specific bank 2 battery set up. I got multiple responses and even posted twice that I had found my answer and what solution I decided I was going with. The thread continued on for several more pages about people arguing over what way was better. Should I or the mods be able to stop the thread or if I were to post solved in the title, how would someone searching find my solved post in the midst of several pages of debate?

2nd where does the line get drawn? Only when there is one specific problem such as my engine won't start, but not when what is the best way to do x?

Is there a preface to the post that states I am looking for an absolute answer so I will post a response or should they post I am just looking for anchor opinions and you can expect this crap will go on forever?

I would say it is a free forum so you get what you pay for it. Lots of vitriol (especially from people that have never owned a boat) with a healthy amount of good advice in between. It's your job to sort through the fodder.

Now if CF were only a pay to play forum then different story, but we would also be losing a lot of good info and members.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:32   #9
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

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I think that better search tools would help. I find it difficult to even find old threads I know of, given what I know to be in them. It would be useful to OPs and a means of quick reference. My opinion, not useful to constrain the heck out of people’s creativity and imagination.
I found this too and honestly I've stopped using it. The best way I've found is to google search for your topic with the words Cruisers Forum in the search box followed by what you are looking for.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:43   #10
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

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I found this too and honestly I've stopped using it. The best way I've found is to google search for your topic with the words Cruisers Forum in the search box followed by what you are looking for.
I hadn’t tried that, thanks. Possible search terms to be listed in the OP? If there was one forum I would modify it would be to open up Marine Electronics into categories. This mix makes it especially difficult to research. Possibilities?
SSB
VHF
Chart Plotter
AIS
Wind, Speed, Depth
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:45   #11
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

I have participated and operated, moderated and admined many forums, including some that are “professional”. I’ve never seen this kind of restrictive approach Jimbo. It may naturally develop in a small community where people mostly know each other (if not personally, then by reputation), but CF is a very different beast.

There is no means-test to certify if people who join here are qualified to speak. It is a self-selected group with a wide range of people and experiences. The new cruiser, or the wannabe, has as much right to post here as the old (crotchety) sailor. Each of us comes here at different stages in cruising, and in life. And we all come here with different skill/experience levels. This naturally translate into different types and levels of questions. The “I got a dream…” posts are just as valid as the specific questions about how to winterize a boat.

But here’s the thing; no one is forced to read, let alone respond, to ANY thread that doesn’t interest them. If you have nothing useful to contribute to a thread, and/or are not interested in the topic, then just move on. Heck, if it really bothers you, put the thread on ‘ignore.’

I’ve said this before a number of times, so I’ll say it again. CF is a DISCUSSION forum. People come here to “discuss” cruising-related topics. Some questions are very specific and fact-based. In these cases a search might be the best way to get an answer. But the vast majority of cruising-related questions rarely have one simple answer. And often the answers evolve over time. What was once the best approach may have changed.

Finally, forum software like vBulletin are really very poor databases. The search tools (even the Google options) are poor. And even when you find a relevant previous thread, trying to extract the sought-after data can be a long and painstaking experience.

As for demanding the OP report back … sure, it would be nice. And common decency demands it. But I see no way to enforce this. I’d much rather see CF abandon fake pseudonyms go to real-names only. This would go much further in setting the tone you seem to want Jimbo.
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Old 14-10-2019, 06:48   #12
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

Cruisersforum.com is the leading online community for Sailboat owners, Cruisers and Boaters, NOT just for “professionals”, and those “elitists” who characterize themselves such.
Trying to enforce relevance, accuracy, and originality, in an open and freewheeling Forum, would be absolutely counterproductive.
As our banner says, we’re about “Cruising Boats, Cruising People, & Cruising Answers”. ➥ Cruisers Forum - Social Knowledge

Notwithstanding, I do have the same attitude to some of what you berate that the late Christopher Hitchens had to books: having something to say is not a good enough reason, by itself, to actually warrant saying it. But that's just me and Chris.
“Everyone has a book in them and that, in most cases, is where it should stay.” ~ Christopher Hitchens
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Old 14-10-2019, 07:18   #13
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

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Originally Posted by Capn Jimbo View Post
. I believe CF needs to make clear that posters must search first, say so, and only then post ending with the OP’s decision and rationale.

Carry on.
Well then there will never be any new threads really as 95+% of new threads I've seen here is some form already in the time I've been here (including this one).

See I didn't even read the replies so this is probably a repeat by now.
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Old 14-10-2019, 07:33   #14
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

I am new here, but if I wanted to be professional and wanted more rules than needed for safety, I would not have quit my job to go sailing.
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Old 14-10-2019, 07:46   #15
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Re: OP etiquette: should CF be more professional?

To answer the title question: No.
This is not a professional forum and most threads have no “answers”. We can have a COLREGS discussion where lawyers, instructors and professional mariners all take a different side of even some of the most mundane issues. Try to find an “answer” to one of those. :-)
This is a bar where you log on, belly up and sometimes have to listen to the drunk guy at the end rant for a while until he gets too drunk and shuts up. Then you can talk amongst yourselves.
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