Author Topic: Request for Comment: An approach for interacting with newcomers to the forum  (Read 23771 times)  

Offline KBoards Admin

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Hello all,

Many of our guests, and registered members, are newcomers to Kindle. Often newcomers will ask questions that have been asked many times before.

In many forums, these newcomers get welcomed with impatient replies, telling them to search for the answer, read the manual, or otherwise find an answer their question. This can discourage newcomers who are new to the whole forum experience, and who feel they got unjustly criticized after bothering to register with us and to post their query.

We want to be a welcoming place for newcomers.

We also value our more experienced members. We recognize, and want to minimize, the frustration that more experienced members may have of seeing the same questions pop up time after time.

Here's a suggested approach for dealing with this. We hope that this will have the effect of giving newcomers a friendly answer, while at the same "training" them on how to find similar answers on their own.

Please take a look, and let us know of any comments or feedback you may have. Thank you!

- Harvey


KINDLEBOARDS Proposed Code of Conduct for Interacting with Newcomers

  A. We are putting a FAQ sticky post at the top of the "Kindle Tips & Tricks" board. (Leslie is well-qualified to do that as a co-author of the Kindle FAQ book...!)

That sticky post will list the most commonly-asked questions that we hear from people new to Kindle. The post will also have a link to the Kindle FAQ downloadable book. The post will also have instructions on how to search the forums effectively.

  B. When a newcomer asks a question whose answer is well-documented, someone (either a moderator or any member) will:
       1 - Welcome the newcomer
       2 - Answer the question courteously
       3 - Point them to the sticky post (or to another post if applicable) that contains that answer
       4 - Do the above promptly, before other forum members jump in and tell them to go away and read the manual. :)

  C. If the same newcomer continues to ask questions that are easily found in the forums, we will simply point them to the sticky post (or other post) that has the answer - rather than answering it directly in our replies.


(Updated to correct the board location of the FAQ. - Admin)
« Last Edit: November 03, 2008, 12:07:58 PM by Harvey »
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Sounds wonderful. Hope it works. This is such an unusual forum. Would love to see it stay as it is, but continue to grow in membership.

Offline Leslie

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Thanks, Lucky. Harvey, I stickied this so folks will see it and chime in with their feedback.

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Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

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Harvey is no fun at all.  ;D ;D

But seriously, folk... great idea!
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I think it's a great idea.   The newcomer has no way of knowing that his or her question has been asked a gazillion times before and it is pretty disheartening to be shot down in flames, when in reality, he or she is probably posting in an excess of excitement over getting a new Kindle.  (I did computer user support for ages, and have answered many many dumb questions and solved many many dumb problems.  (Is it plugged in?  Uh, no....  or Is it turned on?  Uh, no....  'Nuff said.)  Great policy!!!! 

Good job, folks!  I love what I've seen in the short time I've been on this board--you're doing a good job adjusting to its rapid growth.
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Offline KBoards Admin

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Harvey is no fun at all.  ;D ;D

But seriously, folk... great idea!

With great power comes great responsibility. I'm holding back my inner megalomaniac though.  :)
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Offline Leslie

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As Harvey noted, I am going to be creating a post with the Top Twenty All Time Frequently Asked Questions (or maybe 25). I don't want to retype my book in the post but I do want to really address the top questions newcomers have in their minds. So...if you could think back to when you first got your Kindle, whether it was 20 minutes ago or 11 months, what were your most pressing questions? Post them here, I'll keep track and will use them for guidance.

NOTE: I am not going to answer the questions! I just want to get some consensus on the most important ones of all.

L

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Offline Kat

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Don't hold back, Harvey. You are our intrepid leader. We bow before you.

Gotta' say, I fully support the idea of making newbies feel welcome   ;)

Kat
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Offline Linda Cannon-Mott

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Great idea, we were all a newbie once. Great job with the forum Harvey & Leslie.

Linda

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I just became a Jr. Member with my last post!  I bought and have been reading Leslie's FAQ book.  I'm still reading, but might have a question.  Some of what I've been reading on the boards though almost has me scared to ask.   ???
 
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Offline Linda Cannon-Mott

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Congrats on being a junior member! I still have to ask questions after 6 weeks of having my Kindle. Don't be scared, I think one of the goals of this great forum is to keep it friendly. Liked the pic of the bookstore and like your Kindle's name.

Linda

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I advocate a merciless hazing period for all members who joined after me. Then I'll support a strict caste system where those with more stars and more seniority can malign and impugn all those of lower rank. And of course I would expect to be provided a mechanism to bribe the moderators in order to gain special, favorable treatment.

Offline RovingSoul

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Harvey is no fun at all.  ;D ;D

But seriously, folk... great idea!

With great power comes great responsibility. I'm holding back my inner megalomaniac though.  :)

Holding back your inner megalomaniac is all very well and good, but... Do you have spidey sense? Or deliver pizzas? Cause that would be just as welcome..
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Offline Sandpiper

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I finished Leslie's FAQ book, so now I'm back to reading the User's Guide.  Got my question answered (at least partially) there.   :)  So I'll keep reading that.
 
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Offline Wicked

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First post here. Thank you for setting posting guidelines. On the other forums that I frequent the admin/mods do an outstanding job of keeping the conversation and content civil for all. Makes for a much nicer reading and learning environment. I'm looking forward to making a contribution!

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I've tampered my steam:  I've been behaving.  My last few replies on the forum have been very courteous.  I was, I admit, one of the hot heads who answered less than politely:  Only for a few days after Oprah.  But I'm calm now and on my best behavior. I humbly apologize to those whom I have offended.

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With great power comes great responsibility. I'm holding back my inner megalomaniac though.  :)
Holding back your inner megalomaniac is all very well and good, but... Do you have spidey sense? Or deliver pizzas? Cause that would be just as welcome..

Unfortunately, I have much more in common with Peter Parker than I do with Spiderman. *sigh*
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Offline Leslie

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First post here. Thank you for setting posting guidelines. On the other forums that I frequent the admin/mods do an outstanding job of keeping the conversation and content civil for all. Makes for a much nicer reading and learning environment. I'm looking forward to making a contribution!

Welcome, Wicked! Glad to have you here. Go introduce yourself over on the Introductions & Welcome forum.

L

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Offline Avalon

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Thanks for this direction, Harvey.  I can always tell a well-managed board by the way newbs are treated.  Perhaps not surprisingly, the boards that show integrity in dealing with newcomers are also the ones with eventual longevity.  Nastiness tends to burn itself out.

Thanks for making this board a class act.  Great to be here :)
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Offline cush

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I advocate a merciless hazing period for all members who joined after me. Then I'll support a strict caste system where those with more stars and more seniority can malign and impugn all those of lower rank. And of course I would expect to be provided a mechanism to bribe the moderators in order to gain special, favorable treatment.

Teninx- I share your admiration for Faraday. May he be your shield when you are having a R(u)F time!
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Offline pshrynk

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Holding back your inner megalomaniac is all very well and good, but... Do you have spidey sense? Or deliver pizzas? Cause that would be just as welcome..


Unfortunately, I have much more in common with Peter Parker than I do with Spiderman. *sigh*
Yeah, I'm one of those guys who, if he stepped into a nearby phone booth, would emerge looking like Clark Kent. ;D
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Offline mom133d (aka Liz)

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I also wanted to chime and say what a joy this forum is. I've never been to a friendlier place! I understand your headaches, I have been a moderator for a popular tweeners game and a member of more forums than I can count. I just have to limit my time here while at work so it doesn't get blocked! :)
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Thank you! I have to agree, our members make this an enjoyable destination for me every day.
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This is the best board I've ever been on!

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I agree, vickir.  KB is just wonderful. 
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I advocate a merciless hazing period for all members who joined after me. Then I'll support a strict caste system where those with more stars and more seniority can malign and impugn all those of lower rank. And of course I would expect to be provided a mechanism to bribe the moderators in order to gain special, favorable treatment.

I'm with Tenix! Joining or participating on a board, especially one as illustrious as this, should be a trial by fire. Only the strong should survive. And let that be my first post :)

Offline Betsy the Quilter

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I'm with Tenix! Joining or participating on a board, especially one as illustrious as this, should be a trial by fire. Only the strong should survive. And let that be my first post :)

I await your bribes....
 ;D

Betsy
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Offline intinst

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I'm good with the part about those with the most stars...
A great many people now reading and writing would be better employed keeping rabbits.  Edith Sitwell 
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engine of belief that keeps you and your desk in midair. Annie Dillard

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Offline BTackitt

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I'm good with the part about those with the most stars...

ROFLMAO you would be.
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Offline Betsy the Quilter

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I'm good with the part about those with the most stars...

The color of the stars is also very important....
 ;D

Betsy
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The color of the stars is also very important....
 ;D

Betsy

yes. . . especially purple. . . . .

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Offline intinst

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The color of the stars is also very important....
 ;D

Betsy
yes. . . especially purple. . . . .
Purple is great, but I've always been partial to gold...
A great many people now reading and writing would be better employed keeping rabbits.  Edith Sitwell 
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You realize that, with my purple stars, I can delete that post, right?  ;D

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Offline Alondo

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Re: Request for Comment: An approach for interacting with newcomers to the forum
« Reply #34 on: September 06, 2011, 01:54:33 AM »
Harvey,

I have made numerous posts introducing myself and asking questions, but apart from one member I know personally and who I contacted directly, no-one at all has responded. I find the organisation of the site highly confusing, with a bewildering plethora of symbols, and what instructions I can find, use "in the know" terms that I don't understand.

For example, your post refers to something called a "sticky note" or "sticky post" or something. What on earth is that?

I am a college educated, grade-A student, so I don't normally think of myself as "thick" but after a week of trying and failing and not being able to connect with anyone, I'm beginning to wonder.

I wonder if I will get a reply to this? 
The Lodestone Series of Science Fiction
          

Offline Geoffrey

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Re: Request for Comment: An approach for interacting with newcomers to the forum
« Reply #35 on: September 06, 2011, 03:21:35 AM »
Harvey,

I have made numerous posts introducing myself and asking questions, but apart from one member I know personally and who I contacted directly, no-one at all has responded. I find the organisation of the site highly confusing, with a bewildering plethora of symbols, and what instructions I can find, use "in the know" terms that I don't understand.

For example, your post refers to something called a "sticky note" or "sticky post" or something. What on earth is that?


I'm sorry you're confused by the site. I looked through your previous posts so let me see if I can answer your initial questions ......

First, inside a folder you can start a new discussion topic by clicking on the 'New Topic' button found on the top right and bottom right of the list of active discussions - these are referred to as 'threads'.  This will take you to a screen that looks just like the 'Post Reply' screen you've already used but will create a new thread once posted.  I looked at the post you created in the Book Bazaar yesterday and it was done correctly - so hurray!   :)



Next, 'stickied' refers to the messages at the top of a list of threads that have been stuck in place so they remain on the top.  visually, they have a pin icon on them.  As an aside, the ones with a padlock icon are locked and may not be commented on.



You asked about signatures.  There is a fairly complete tutorial in the Writer's Cafe you can use when creating your auto-signature.  It will answer most of your questions about content, size restrictions, etc.  and yes, you may mention your website in the signature space. I also listed below a link to Harvey's 7 Essential Tips which is also in the Writer's cafe.

Creating Signatures - An updated tutorial including NEW SIGNATURE SIZE LIMITS

Authors: 7 essential KindleBoards tips

I hope that helps.  If you have other questions, please don't hesitate to ask.

Geoffrey
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Offline intinst

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Re: Request for Comment: An approach for interacting with newcomers to the forum
« Reply #36 on: September 11, 2011, 09:28:40 PM »
Harvey,

I have made numerous posts introducing myself and asking questions, but apart from one member I know personally and who I contacted directly, no-one at all has responded. I find the organisation of the site highly confusing, with a bewildering plethora of symbols, and what instructions I can find, use "in the know" terms that I don't understand.

For example, your post refers to something called a "sticky note" or "sticky post" or something. What on earth is that?

I am a college educated, grade-A student, so I don't normally think of myself as "thick" but after a week of trying and failing and not being able to connect with anyone, I'm beginning to wonder.

I wonder if I will get a reply to this? 
 


Several people have responded to you in this thread:
Topic: Too difficult.

Don't give up, check the earlier post I made in that thread for several links to different areas here at KindleBoards.
A great many people now reading and writing would be better employed keeping rabbits.  Edith Sitwell 
Your work is to keep cranking the flywheel that turns the gears that spin the belt in the
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Offline geoffthomas

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Alondo,
Having followed the linked posts around the forum, I truly believe that there has been a concerted effort to provide you with help.
Has it been effective?
Are you finding your way around better now?


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Offline Betsy the Quilter

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In case Alondo doesn't get back here to comment, I can attest that he's been fairly active in the Writers' Caf lately (over 200 posts in the WC)!  It seems he's settling in pretty well.  :D

Betsy
« Last Edit: October 21, 2011, 04:49:49 AM by Betsy the Quilter »
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