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Posting back to a response

Chan Ag

Joined: Sep 06, 2012
Posts: 1089

I have often wondered about a few things while posting back to the responses I get on my threads. What is the ideal way to respond back. Sometimes what happens is this. Person A responds to your questions but there is something else that you'd also like to know. But while posting your response you also don't don't want to imply that you're asking a question to a certain someone cause it is inappropriate in public forums ( 1. They are voluntary responses. 2. You can't imply to be able to put an obligation on the other person to answer your next question or a part of your original question because they tried to help you with your original question or a part of it. ).

You obviously don't want people who'd find an excuse to log off when you login. Just saying.. Not that people are doing it. I might have considered it ( just guessing ) though, if I was knowledgeable and people started asking me too many questions directly because I answered their first question.

I'm not sure if people are generally offended more if a post is not addressed to them directly or if it is addressed to them. Would like to know what you think of it.

Personally, I'd like to amend my ways of responding to forum posts. I'd like to ensure henceforth that I don't address any of my posts to anybody in particular. Because a public forum is supposed to be a pleasant experience for people. Nobody likes to offend people or be offended in turn.

Do you think it is better to not address your posts to anybody in particular?

Martin Vajsar

Joined: Aug 22, 2010
Posts: 3733

I think this thread would actually fit nicely into the Ranch Office forum

I've encountered both kinds of responses already, and I didn't feel offended by either one. However, addressing someone personally in the public forum might perhaps risk turning other people who might otherwise help away, so it is probably not a good idea for this pure utilitarian reason alone.

It's true that it can be sometimes felt the way you mention - as putting an obligation on someone - but I believe that most people who start answering questions on forums will quickly learn to handle (um, ignore) it.

To sum it up, I believe that we've all seen worse offenses than that in forums, and I wouldn't be afraid of addressing someone personally if the context invites to it just because it is in the public forum. It is still better than an a personal message to that user, since the conversation stays visible - and useful - to other people.

But I really appreciate that you're trying to make our forum better and friendlier. Have a cow!
Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 63858

I agree with Martin -- it's great that you are asking these kind of questions.

I'll also just add that some people may feel excluded if you focus on one responder rather than replying in general.

However, when responding specifically to something someone has asked, or a point they have made, I don't think there's any problem with something like: "Hey bear, what did you mean when you said 'Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet?'"

[Asking smart questions] [About Bear] [Books by Bear]
Chan Ag

Joined: Sep 06, 2012
Posts: 1089
Martin Vajsar wrote: Have a cow!

Thanks for the pretty cow. :-)
Chan Ag

Joined: Sep 06, 2012
Posts: 1089

Did you guys give me two cows? I can't figure how I got the second cow. :-)

Steve Luke

Joined: Jan 28, 2003
Posts: 4181

Hi Chan,

Martin gave you one for this thread, and Henry Wong gave you one for a conversation you two had in PMs

Chan Ag

Joined: Sep 06, 2012
Posts: 1089
Thanks, Steve.

And thanks, Henry.

Jaikiran Pai

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10441

Steve Luke wrote:Hi Chan,

Martin gave you one for this thread,

That's right. Those of you who might not have noticed this relatively new feature, take a look at the first post in this thread, which got the cow. You'll notice a tiny cow image beside the post date displayed for that post.

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I agree. Here's the link:
subject: Posting back to a response
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