Home Forums General General Yeah, that is nice, but what about my question?

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  • #80990
    Mike
    Keymaster

    All over the internet people will be asking specific questions, and people will not have the answer, but will offer some information the person asking the question did not ask for.
    Such as “What is your preferred model size/scale of Napoleonic games?”
    To which people will offer responses such as “I don’t really do Napoleonic but I do 6mm WWII”
    or
    “Not played Napoleonic’s but am thinking of doing ACW in 10mm” and so on.

    Or as happened to me on Facebook a while back before I deactivated my account “What is the best way to use product X?”
    “I don’t use X I use Y”
    “Yes, I use Y too, use that instead”
    “If you were serious about it you would use Z”

    To me this seems as useful as asking someone if they have the time, only to get a reply “Yesterday was Friday”, when the actual answer should be “no.”

    Does it bother you when people don’t actually answer your question? Is silence better than replies that have no use to you? Is all chatter ok, as you never know what you may discover? Have I set myself up for you lot to insert random bits of text with no relevance to my question?

    #80992
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    I wouldn’t really know. When I started using the internet it was still the norm for forums to have branching threads, so that issue wasn’t really as big of a problem back then. I started hanging out on a Civilization II forum, but eventually I drifted away from that sort of PC games after Alpha Centauri or thereabouts. I hear they’ve got as far as Civilization VI now, but it’s not the same thing anymore. Ah, the memories of playing Civ II. But you were always in trouble if you started close to the Mongols, the game was a bit unbalanced that way.

    #80993
    Grimheart
    Participant

    Hmm.

    Generally yes it bothers me when people don’t answer the actual OP question although it does depend a bit on how relevant/irrelevant the reply is. Not much we can do about it though as i think we are all guilty of it occasionally.

    Yes i would prefer silence rather than pointless replies. If you have something else to say, start your own thread! Or preferably check to see if a  thread about your subject already exists.

    Anyways we people are varied and weird and will often not think logically and say quite a bit of random stuff. Nothings going to change that 😱

     

    Interest include 6mm WW2, 6mm SciFi, 30mm Old West, DropFleet, Warlords Exterminate and others!

    #80994
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    Looking at the replies to some questions I don’t think many respondents even read the question 🙂

     

     

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #80995
    irishserb
    Participant

    I think that anytime, anyone asks a question of those that he or she largely does not know, that he or she should know that he or she is just asking for it.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by irishserb.
    #80997
    Norm S
    Participant

    Thread HiJacking is worse!

    (Mike, just teasing) 🙂

    Because the internet is so all encompassing and everyone has a voice, I think generally you just have to rub along in some areas, unless someone is being deliberately unhelpful or offensive / rude / argumentative etc.  Not actually answering the question, but still attempting to be helpful, may be unfair to call.

     

     

    #80999
    Ivan Sorensen
    Participant

    It does bug me, but I think it’s basically something you have to take for granted:

    People will answer the question they want to have been asked, not the one that was asked 🙂

    Nordic Weasel Games
    https://www.wargamevault.com/browse/pub/5701/Nordic-Weasel-Games?src=browse5701

    #81004
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    Depends how far away from the question the answer is.

    To take your example – ‘“What is your preferred model size/scale of Napoleonic games?”

    ‘I do 6mm WWII’, is pretty useless as an answer (though it may prompt interesting discussions about best scales for different periods).

    ‘I don’t do Napoleonics, but use 15mm for SYW, because I like the uniform detail you can get and where the battlefields are small and compact, but use 6mm for ACW to allow me to fight the whole battle, and I ‘m not so bothered about blue and grey uniform detail. So depending which element is most important to you for Napoleonics I’d go 15mm for uniforms, but 6mm for the practicality of doing the whole battle.’   Is not a direct answer, but a pretty good one, and possibly more useful than a short blunt ‘I do 28mm’.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Guy Farrish.
    #81006
    vexillia
    Participant

    To answer your questions:

    Does it bother you when people don’t actually answer your question?

    No.  Asking on a forum is always my last resort.

    Is silence better than replies that have no use to you?

    Yes but sometimes general leads can help.

    Is all chatter ok, as you never know what you may discover?

    No. Quality always wins.

    Have I set myself up for you lot to insert random bits of text with no relevance to my question?

    Yes.  Compare my replies to those above.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by vexillia.

    Martin Stephenson :: Work | Blog | Auctions

    #81008
    Mike Headden
    Participant

    I think it depends on what is asked and how it’s asked.

    “What is your preferred model size/scale of Napoleonic games?” is a nothing question, as far as I’m concerned.

    “I’m thinking of doing Napoleonics but I’m not sure what size figures to use, any suggestions?” or “I’m a game designer, planning as set of Napoleonic rules, it would help to get a feel for the scale of figures people use, can you help?” give people something to focus on.

    Then it becomes, “I don’t do Napoleonics but I do ACW in 10mm because <insert reason(s) here>.” or whatever.

    Frankly, the wider the question the more you should expect off topic (to you) answers.

    I see online forum posts, whether FB or TWW,  as conversations and, just as in face-to-face conversations, I find people who insist on ploughing on with their own conversational agenda long after the conversation has moved on from it tedious and irritating.

    Often the best bit of a conversation, online and in real life, is something tangential to, but sparked by, the original topic.

    YMMV

    Growing old is mandatory, growing up is entirely optional!

    #81009
    kyoteblue
    Participant

    I’m used to it.

    #81010
    Phil Dutré
    Participant

    Drifting off-topic happens in ftf conversations all the time. When was the last time you had a pint in the pub?

    A question is just a conversation-starter, nothing else.

    If you want a clear answer to your question, you should ask a very precise question to begin with.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Phil Dutré.

    Tiny Tin Men Blog: http://snv-ttm.blogspot.com/
    Wargaming Mechanics Blog: http://wargaming-mechanics.blogspot.com/

    #81014
    Ruarigh
    Participant

    If I ask a question on a forum, I want an answer to that question. If I ask about techniques for painting 6mm uniforms, then I want answers related to that topic, not someone piling in with comments about why 6mm is rubbish and I should be gaming in 28mm instead. I’ve seen that happen all too often and I have no patience with it any more. If I want a conversation, I’ll phrase my question in a manner designed to elicit discussion, but I still have no patience with those who hijack or derail the conversation just because it suits their agenda. Life’s too short to be dealing with that sort of rubbish, and it’s one reason why I no longer frequent some of the forums I used to.

    Never argue with an idiot. They'll only drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

    https://emidsvikings.ac.uk/
    https://roderickdale.co.uk/

    #81015
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    Drifting off-topic happens in ftf conversations all the time. When was the last time you had a pint in the pub? A question is just a conversation-starter, nothing else. If you want a clear answer to your question, you should ask a very precise question to begin with.

    <groans> not the pub analogy again?

    If you ask a direct question in the pub you aren’t addressing a potential audience of thousands, 75% of whom may be dimwits.

    <edit> and what Ruarigh said.

     

     

     

     

     

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #81018
    Rod Robertson
    Participant

    Mike asked:

    “Does it bother you when people don’t actually answer your question? Is silence better than replies that have no use to you? Is all chatter ok, as you never know what you may discover? Have I set myself up for you lot to insert random bits of text with no relevance to my question?”

    I am not bothered when folks do not directly answer posed questions I have asked as long as their tangents are not rude or pejorative. Sometimes tangents are interesting or can indirectly shed light on the question posed, so deviation from the question-answer format can still be more productive than silence. Diversity of responses is usually more conducive to learning and inspiration than strict adherence to answering a posed question, thus there may be pearls in the chaff of chatter waiting to be discovered. Yes, you have set yourself up for non-sequiturs and random responses, but that is just the silly side of human nature at play in an all too often focused and adult world.

    Cheers.

    Rod Robertson.

    #81019
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    Of course, some questions are brought up as a way of sparking conversation (or even debate) instead of trying to get a precise, concrete answer or a statistical tally. “What is your preferred scale for Napoleonics?” may be one such question. The person asking it may be after some stimulating conversation over the subjective pros and cons of different scales (nothing that would ever arrive at an objective answer), and may even be welcoming to having the conversation strike off on tangents such as Napoleonic skirmish gaming (assuming the context of the original question was more to do with massed battle gaming in the first place), or general subjective preferences for ground scale and figure ratio.

    Still, common sense should prevail regarding the indicated subject matter. If I were to answer “I don’t do Napoleonics because I find horse-and-musket historicals unapproachable and beginner-hostile”, and segue to some far-removed subject matter that I want to talk about instead – because I’d rather not be irrelevant to a conversation – then I’m not following common sense anymore. I’d be better off either taking a softer approach where I acknowledge my own irrelevance to the subject matter and well-meaningly, however naively, add what little I can to the conversation (“I don’t do Napoleonics so I can’t speak from experience, but I must admit to a certain fascination with the Oddzial Osmy 3mm Napoleonic range”) or just waiting for a topic more relevant to myself to come around.

    #81023
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    I am not bothered when folks do not directly answer posed questions I have asked as long as their tangents are not rude or pejorative.

    This in front end loader scoops! 🙂

    not the pub analogy again?

    Clearly anti-social here! LOL

    Not at all, I was drinking in a music club last night with 500 other people. I even knew some of them, and a some of them even bought me a drink!

    However, the whole ‘the internet is like a virtual pub’ thing is patently a load of old cobblers, which I would have hoped you would have understood if you’d read the rest of my post.

    Today I am feeling anti-social though. I seem to have caught the lurgy from one of my fellow revellers last night  and I am proper poorly 🙂

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #81024
    Mike
    Keymaster

    I wouldn’t really know. When I started using the internet it was still the norm for forums to have branching threads, so that issue wasn’t really as big of a problem back then. I started hanging out on a Civilization II forum, but eventually I drifted away from that sort of PC games after Alpha Centauri or thereabouts. I hear they’ve got as far as Civilization VI now, but it’s not the same thing anymore. Ah, the memories of playing Civ II. But you were always in trouble if you started close to the Mongols, the game was a bit unbalanced that way.

     

    I liked Age of Empires III myself.

    #81025
    Private Snafu
    Participant

    The question really is why don’t people properly embed images into their posts to better drive traffic to their destination of choice?  As to the other question…what was the question?  couldn’t help myself, sorry.

    Do keep in mind some folks, right or wrong, are just conversing.  Internet forums and social media are different then search engine results.  If you really need to ask then you need to prepare yourself to sort through all the “search” results that do not give you the answer you are looking for.  Computer algorithms likely provide better answers then humans.

    ___________________
    http://moveshootassault.blogspot.com
    https://sites.google.com/site/miniaturemachinations

    #81029
    John D Salt
    Participant

    When I started using the internet it was still the norm for forums to have branching threads, so that issue wasn’t really as big of a problem back then.

    Ah yes, back when technology meant manned spaceflight and supersonic passenger aircraft, rather than new ways to share photographs of your lunch with the rest of the planet. A Usenet-style text-only threaded newsreader would still be my preferred way of reading most fora, both for ease of use and to avoid all the pics of lunch. Perhaps modern forum software will catch up to thread branching some time soon. Remember, kiddies, it’s not the pace of technological advance that’s dragging the blood to the back of our brains, it’s just that we’re getting dizzy from going round in circles, which is why the flying car comes around every ten years or so, and AI and VR are back in fashion this season.

    There is of course a bit of a difference in the purposes of Usenet and Facebook. Usenet was set up to post news of technical interest to nerds, and administered by archnerds as a public service for reasons of interest and hackery. Facepark was set up as a medum of social interaction, implemented by people who apparently have not even sat in the same room as a book on user interface design, for reasons of advertising and making money fast. So, to a first-order approximation, usenet posts (at least up until eternal September) were expected to have some content, whereas Facepalm posts are not — they are phatic communications, designed to establish and maintain social links rather than to pass information. Which explains why arguing on Faceache is an exercise of even more prodigious futility than arguing on Usenet was. I also suspect that it might partly explain the curious scent-marking instinct of many Faceplate posters, who suffer from the delusion that they somehow “own” discussions that they have started. In olden days such nonsense would have been met with accusations of being a .net.cop, and demands to see the receipt that said you’d bought the internet.

    Where on the phatic-informational spectrum should forum posts sit? That, of course, is a question for the moderator. But I hope there will always be a policy of suppressing with a flamethrower of iron resolve the AOL frosh habit of posting content-free utterances such as “+1 Jim Spriggs” or “Bill Throbes for the win!”, which, so far, have not afflicted our cosy little island of approximate sanity at TWW.

    And, to answer the original question, I never could get the hang of Thursdays.

    All the best,

    John.

    #81030
    John D Salt
    Participant

    Computer algorithms likely provide better answers then humans.

    “Google can bring you back 100000 answers. A librarian can bring you back the right one.” — Neil Gaiman.

    All the best,

    John.

    #81031
    John D Salt
    Participant

    However, the whole ‘the internet is like a virtual pub’ thing is patently a load of old cobblers,

    I thought that Senator Ted Stevens (R, Alaska) had clearly established that the internet is a series of tubes.

    If the internet were really a virtual pub, I would have been banned for breaking virtual barstools over people’s virtual heads a very long time ago.

    All the best,

    John.

    #81033
    Norm S
    Participant

    The question really is why don’t people properly embed images into their posts to better drive traffic to their destination of choice? As to the other question…what was the question? couldn’t help myself, sorry

    I thought I did specifically answer that one 18 months ago!

    #81035
    Phil Dutré
    Participant

    Usenet. Those were the days!

    rec.games.miniatures.historical anyone?

    I still remember one of the first things you saw when you went on usenet was an explanation about netiquette. I don’t even know if people still use that word.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Phil Dutré.
    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Phil Dutré.

    Tiny Tin Men Blog: http://snv-ttm.blogspot.com/
    Wargaming Mechanics Blog: http://wargaming-mechanics.blogspot.com/

    #81037
    Phil Dutré
    Participant

    However, the whole ‘the internet is like a virtual pub’ thing

    Well, I didn’t say that. I said that when people talk, the conversation always drift off to other topics. A pub is a good example to witness that pattern. That’s something different than saying the internet itself is a pub.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Phil Dutré.

    Tiny Tin Men Blog: http://snv-ttm.blogspot.com/
    Wargaming Mechanics Blog: http://wargaming-mechanics.blogspot.com/

    #81055

    As, I think, Tim (above) has proved, something totally irrelevant may well be entertaining.

    I appreciate the desire for a straight answer but serendipity resides in thread hijacks.

     

    donald

    #81060
    Norm S
    Participant

    I have just visited another forum. A question was asked. The first three respondents said they did not do the period under discussion, so could not help, but welcomed the new poster to the forum anyway.

    All three have clearly noted it was a first post (I would have missed that) and bothered themselves to give a friendly welcome, which is also a general and natural reflection on how friendly that forum is. I would consider that a good and worthwhile response even though the question was not answered.

    #81062
    MartinR
    Participant

    Usenet. Those were the days!

    rec.games.miniatures.historical anyone?

    I still remember one of the first things you saw when you went on usenet was an explanation about netiquette. I don’t even know if people still use that word.

    As at least four of the original users of r.g.m.h are on this forum, perhaps it lives on in spirit.

    As for thread drift, it is the Internet, people will interact with it as they will. In long threads like this one, most people will barely bother to read all or even any intermediate posts, and by the time they get down here they’ll have largely forgotten the Op anyway.

    What amuses me are the people who are surprised, or possibly even infuriated by thread drift. It is really very funny. net cops every one:)

    "Mistakes in the initial deployment cannot be rectified" - Helmuth von Moltke

    #81064
    Cameronian
    Participant

    I would encourage the use of these:

    'The time has come" The walrus said. "To talk of many things: Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--Of cabbages--and kings--And why the sea is boiling hot--And whether pigs have wings."

    #81067
    Cerdic
    Participant

    Unlike most fruit, you should never store bananas in the fridge.

    #81073
    Mike
    Keymaster

    Unlike most fruit, you should never store bananas in the fridge.

    On account of them being herbs?

    #81074
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    Unlike most fruit, you should never store bananas in the fridge.

    On account of them being herbs?

     

    No, because they go all black and mushy. 🙂

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #81078
    Mike Headden
    Participant

    Unlike most fruit, you should never store bananas in the fridge.

    Indeed!

    Peel them, push a bamboo skewer in lengthwise leaving a handle at one end, wrap in a freezer food bag and store in the freezer.

    Et voila! A nutritious and lower calorie replacement for an ice lolly.

    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

     

    Growing old is mandatory, growing up is entirely optional!

    #81083
    Cerdic
    Participant

    Thanks for the tip Mike, but I think I will stick with a Magnum!

    #81084
    Ian Marsh
    Participant

     As at least four of the original users of r.g.m.h are on this forum, perhaps it lives on in spirit.

    A strong reason for the practice of exorcism…

    Ian
    Fighting 15s
    www.fighting15s.com

    #81086

    Personally, I think it is a gamer thing.  For instance, if I ask how to change a light bulb in my car(I’ve actually researched this for a Toyota Yaris) I get very specific if not wrong answers.  I am about to as a neighborhood group who hauls junk and the best place to get breaks changed.  In general, folks are helpful and give you plenty of suggestions.

    I think gamers are more willing to push their own agendas to make sure game X or product Y gets used above all else.  I’ve certainly asked on another page about what one thinks of an Ancients game only to get answers like “Dunno.  I play DBA.”  or “I know lots of people are playing Hail Caesar.”  It seems to happen a lot with mainstream sorts of games.

    I am certain I have be guilty of this crime in the past, usually because I am answering when at work and am in too much of a hurry to consider what I’ve just written.  😀

     

    John

    "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

    --Abraham Lincoln

    #81088
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    Personally, I think it is a gamer thing. 

     

    Nope. If anything it’s a boy’s toys thing.

    I can pretty much guarantee that if you go on to a guitar forum (to use another of my hobbies as an example) you’ll get pretty much the same deviation.

    “Hi. I’ve been looking at a Fender Blues Junior*. Anyone got one? Any pros/cons?”

    “I had one. Hated the thing. Sold it”

    “I’ve got a Fender Bassman**. Solid amps”

    “You’d be better off with a Boss Katana 100***. I love mine!”

    …and it’s all downhill from there.

     

    *It’s a guitar amplifier.

    **So’s that

    ***Guess what? 😀

     

     

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #81090
    Ivan Sorensen
    Participant

    Some people just can’t conceive of a conversation that doesn’t revolve around them or their interests.

    Being of sometimes dubious social skill, nerds might be more prone to it, I dunno.

    Nordic Weasel Games
    https://www.wargamevault.com/browse/pub/5701/Nordic-Weasel-Games?src=browse5701

    #81093

    Sure, sometimes I read a response and question whether the responder read the question. I just cynically shake my head and mentally note the responder as a nitwit. This happens more often than I care to admit. But thought should be put into the question, too. “Which scale do you prefer for Napoleonics?” “1/32.” Asked and answered. The real, implied question is (usually) “Why do you prefer a particular scale for Napoleonic gaming?” Often the implied question can be understood from the context. Other times not and people are not equally adept at parsing the context.

    I don’t mind topic drift. They’re usually collaterally informative or amusing. But the further a topic gets from the OP, the less likely I am to keep up with the discussion. And drift tends to dilute the value of a forum by polluting search results and making information hard to find. I would never think to peruse this topic when trying to find out about frozen banana treats. (And now I want to know why a banana would ever be considered an herb!)

    One of my pet peeves (I have quite a menagerie) are Amazon reviews. I find a book I’m interested in. Check out the reviews. “Five Stars. I’d give it eight if I could because it arrived quickly in good shape!” Or, “My husband loved it!” Argh!

    Happens in real life, too. I work at a historic site where we get many, many  visitors. Just yesterday a visitor came up to me and asked “Do you know why these people are standing in line?” I was in a playful mood so I smiled and said. “Yes I do.” Full stop.

    Don’t worry, I didn’t leave her in the dark.

     

     

    Self taught, persistently behind the times, never up to date. AKA ~ jeff
    More verbosity: http://petiteguerre.blogspot.com/

    #81099

    Personally, I think it is a gamer thing.

    Nope. If anything it’s a boy’s toys thing. 

    I’ll go with that.

    John

    "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

    --Abraham Lincoln

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