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@nbouscal , @Diyadiya
The basic idea is that we give a cap (like 8 questions per hour) to new users, and raise it slowly as they get a higher smart score, eventually just lifting the cap altogether.
We got around to this question cap because of answer fiends: even though they can't spam the newsfeed, they can open close questions and essentially do the same thing. I know this has been discussed before, but I would like to bring up the topic again.
And, in my opinion, if you have to ask more than 10 questions per hour, really, you are wasting the resources of this website, not trying to learn, or abusing the question asking reward for SS. Or any combination. Maybe the number 10 is not agreed upon, but I think you get the idea (the "answer fiends" often asked 20+ questions per hour when they had to)
And as for the alternate account creating, I believe that users can simply report that user, and have the moderators handle it. (this was @nbouscal 's idea actually) And as for alternate account detection, I think it would be useful if someone could implement something in addition to an ip-check: a chart that shows all the users that use or have used a single ip. I'm not sure about how this would work (or if it would work), but I just wanted to give out the idea. Also, @badreferences
dont like the OP idea
@timo86m , please elaborate :)
newer users are the ones that need more help.
Nigeria runs off one IP address. Given that there aren't too many users in Nigeria to begin with, the few there are would run into hard-to-prove issues.
The nice thing about the alternate accounts problem is that this method of calibrating question limits based on SmartScore fixes the problem automatically to an extent. By creating other accounts, you make it such that your SmartScore will not increase, so your question limit will not increase.
@timo86m , We believe that asking more than 8 questions per hour is less help and more answer fiending.
And, good point, panda. The issue is that it would still be possible to constantly create new accounts. But, it would certainly be annoying to the poster, and people would still figure out quickly.
they find ways around it. like asking multiple qs in one thread
I'm against any action that could harm @Pippa or any of his/her new accounts. Ahaha.
@timo86m , there need to be answer snipers for there to be answer fiends, I believe, Answer snipers do not care if they cannot get medals. Thus they won't answer questions most likely.
And, they probably will ask related questions, and I actually agre with that. Instead of asking us 10 questiosn about the whole unit of quadratics, i would much rather prefer them asking 3 questions with multiple grouped ideas.
lol i seen people complain about snipers but want their medals 2. Sounds like hipocracy.
@timo86m , what do you mean?
He's talking about the government form where hippo's are in power.
like one user calls me a sniper but goes around saying dont help such and such because they are a fiend. But I answer questions all the time in a new thread and int the same thread they go on askign qs and i know i wont get a medal. That is not what I am about.
I haven't actually run into this being as much of an issue as it used to be, but I still think the idea has merits. There have been many users who have abused the system by simply posting numerous homework or test questions seeking answers, and not seeking learning. This helps curtail that problem. The simple fact is that if you're asking more than 10 (or 15, or 20) questions per hour, you're not really working at your learning. If you're at a point where you need help to learn a question, then you ought to be spending at least a few minutes working on the question to try to gain understanding. Questions that are simply seeking definitions, or multiple choice "what property of addition is this," don't properly belong here anyway, since you can just Google them. Questions like, "can you explain the properties of addition to me" on the other hand, are great... and they always remain open for much more than 5-10 minutes. There are obviously ways around this measure, and reasons why it would not work perfectly. It is odd to me that they would be used as an argument against it. For example, timo's argument that people would ask multiple questions in the same thread. Yes, I'm sure they would. Is that an argument against implementing the idea in the first place? Not really. Something not working perfectly is not an argument against doing it at all. If it would be an improvement over the current system, then it is worth implementing in my book.
Medals are mostly irrelevant, in my opinion. If they work, fine. If they don't, it shouldn't infringe on your ability to post/answer. Hell, I barely have any medals because apparently my answers/questions are crappy. I would hope I won't get punished for it.
I actuly think that asking multiple questions in the same thread should be done if they are closely related. I hate having to solve a bunch of questions over and over again that are the same subject. I'd much rather just have a short list and show them how to do one question, and watch them do the rest. If they ask unrelated questions, most people will probably just not answer them. I usually ignore people an tell them to ask a new question if the question is unrelated. @badreferences , medals are actually related to the problem. answer snipers are usually in for it for the medals, and they ruin the community by turning it from learning to cheaters. Answer fiends are also a problem, that are "fueled" by answer snipers I guess.
The solution is either to tighten restrictions on medals, which is absurdly difficult to implement without conflict, or to devalue the medal.
The issue with medals is calibrating the system so that they accurately achieve their purpose: classifying users by contribution to the community. It is a multifaceted problem that the team is and has been working very hard on.
I guess "I'm in it for the medals", but I know a lot of people that get annoyed when they get answer sniped in an answer fiend question, and the fiend just spams questions. Without the questions being able to be spammed, we will see less interested answer fiends, and maybe even convert them into people interested in learning. We want to get the message across that this is a learning site, not a cheating site.
Being "in it for the medals" is wholly irrelevant; it brings into question the motives, when currently we're concerned with the utility. It doesn't matter if someone gives amazing answers "only for medals". It matters marginally more, however, when it's possible to obtain medals (which may soon be implemented to have more value) without giving real answers at all.
@badreferences , what I'm trying to say is that medals are directly relevant to learning in this community due to answer fiends.
I disagree. Medals have no real power to do anything in this community. You don't have priority because of medals; you don't have privilege because of medals. You don't have any advantage because of medals. Their only value is in what we think of them, something that is vague at best. So, right now, it makes very little difference who gets the medals. However, you propose limiting users. On the off chance that this harms an actually-good contributor, the easiest concession to make would be to give higher-ranked users more privilege. But, as it is, medals are being rewarded to those who don't contribute to this community's ethos, but rather to each asker ("answer fiend") individually. I see only two solutions to this. The first is that we devalue the medal, and make it nonexistent. I don't like this solution, because then we lose our metric for contribution, even as broken as it is. The second, which is significantly harder, is to limit the ability to reward medals in such a way that it's difficult to abuse the system. I don't know how to go about this. But limiting one's ability to ask questions is sidestepping the issue. You have a problem with this in the first place because of the medal abuse. Why not deal with the medals directly?
Well, the spamming questions had more to do with just medals. When people spam questions, they don't learn...
Surely, then it's a user base issue for not ignoring those questions? Restricting traffic guarantees no stratification.
We're basically dealing with the eternal September phenomenon here. We have a great core userbase that agrees with the ideals of the community as represented in the code of conduct, etc. We also have a ton of new users as well as transient users who stop by, ask a question or two, and then may or may not come back. Since OS is an open framework where everyone can answer any question, we end up with new users answering the questions of other new users. This is what causes what you refer to as a user base issue. The thing is, it isn't really a user base issue so much as an eternal September issue, which I think is best solved by actually utilizing the SmartScore metric.
1) The newbies are usually the one that needs help. So obviously they will ask question a lot. 2) There is no point in limiting question. If you limit the question according to your medal/contributions, the newbies will only see hard questions because they are posted by you. And hence, They will think that this forum is not for them. 3) If you really annoyed by someone ask same question again and again. Either don't answer it and let other newbie to answer. users aren't only you you know. Or link them to an explanation regarding their particular topic.
Yes, the new users are the ones that need help. We have a motivating philosophy here at OpenStudy though that the help we seek to provide is not just answers to questions. There are countless sources on the internet for answers to questions. Google, Yahoo! Answers, WolframAlpha, take your pick. We are here for something that I see as being a little bit more important than just answers. We're here to help facilitate learning. Learning does not happen by throwing 20 questions out and receiving answers to them all. Learning happens by working through questions and understanding them thoroughly. So, yes, new users need help. That does not mean that they need to ask 30 questions an hour.
M.SE also has this eternal September issue. Once again, it's the common users who are responsible for self-regulation through the careful application of downvotes.
And that questions, which usually are trivial, will be answered by other newbie. The other newbie of course, presumably, have asked a similar question before and now what to contribute to this forum. SO it is a win win.
M.SE also has very rigid stratification of how users can participate based on those users' scores. No, that is not at all a win win. Newbies giving other newbies answers to questions is not what we want to encourage here. That does not help OpenStudy reach its goals. The whole point is that OpenStudy is about more than answers to questions. If it was a case of new users providing good detailed explanations to the questions of other new users, that would be wonderful. That is not what happens. New users simply post the answer to a different new user's question, get their medal, and continue on, thinking that that is what the site is about. That is not what we want the site to be about.
This conversation may have taken a slight detour, but I'll address the initial idea: In fact, we already have something like this set up, in a sense. However, our motivations for it were just to prevent the "immediate" trolls: those that would come to the site and consistently post vulgar, abusive, or otherwise unnecessary content with the sole goal of upsetting people. Because of this, the actual values are something much smaller, like 1 question in yr first minute (this isn't the actual value. :X). Your idea, while similar, would serve a different purpose. I initially like the idea, because I feel that it would help prevent those who just come for answers, but the issue with trying to fix that issue is that we often affect the first-time experience of ALL users, which tends to have unforeseen consequences. There are users that come here with a huge need for help and have a multitude of questions that need to get answered before the morning. We surely don't want to hinder those. One idea would be to have users "earn" their ability to ask more questions, say by inviting friends or answering questions of others. It's a bit of a complex situation, so I'm definitely liking hearing all these varying opinions. I'll marinate on it for the moment.
After looking around, indeed there are some people that just asked the same questions again and again but with a little bit of different version. As if we're doing their homework. When asking question again and again, one should state: 1) Topic. 2) The question 3) ATTEMPTED SOLUTION 4) Their problem.
Otherwise they're just going to ask for full marks but zero knowledge! Spoiled kids!
@nbouscal I take back what I said. Some people are just lazy. They make others, who are genuinely want to learn, suffers. Can you imagine what does someone feels when he/she want to ask genuine question, his/her question is dropped as these lazy people posting their homework. We have to wait for hours before our question bumped on top of their 'homework' problem! Which just a second later, dropped again!!