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Subject: Important question rss

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Isaac Citrom
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Just a gripe. Thread titles do matter. The single best way of searching for relevant information is by thread title. But when thread titles are like, rules question, game recommendation, or war game, it makes it a pointless exercise. Then, one is left parsing page after page after page of post text.

There is no shortage of character space. I can find any document on my PC because my documents are not entitled like, letter14.doc, rather Note to Laszlo's 2nd grade English teacher about inherited genius - 24-Jun-2004.doc.

I think some people are just too lazy to search. But, I also think some people are ready to search but these generic 200 nanosecond-thought thread titles make it next to impossible.

Rules question
Maximum length of time for initial diplomacy

Game recommendation request
Looking for a 4-player 4X game with extra depth and that plays in 15 minutes; willing to spend $5

My favourite war game
Why Risk is under-appreciated by the Pentagon as a geopolitical strategy gaming tool

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suPUR DUEper
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True enough. For my favorite games I tend to ask the posters of ambiguous posts to retitle them (especially the rules questions). Most are pretty good about it.

You would think BGG'ers being an educated bunch would do better overall in this space. modest
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Ryan King
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Search function pulls out keywords anyway, so you should always have no problem, but I agree and will keep in mind going forward.
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Mike Hoyt

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There is a thread about "making the rules folders more useful" which encourages the behavior you are recommending. Basically you adopt a game, then go through the rules questions and politely ask the OP to retitle their thread to be as specific as possible.

If I was better at searching, I'd find the link for you. Maybe I'll go try anyway

Ha found it!
[CLOSED] Campaign to make the Rules Folders more useful - Adopt a Game!

Now to suggest that maybe this thread needs retitling?
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Ryan King
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Also, I normally type a question into google and end the query with "bgg", works every time!
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Enrico Viglino
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Did you really have to add to the problem by titling this
thread in the same manner?
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CPBelt
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calandale wrote:
Did you really have to add to the problem by titling this
thread in the same manner?


So I'm not the only one I see who is savoring the irony!

You're about 35+ years late with this gripe. There is a long, fine tradition of bad subject lines going on long before the WWW, back to the days of Usenet, Arpanet, Bulletin Board Systems, and beyond. I know because been there and done that. Sigh. Now I really feel old!

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suPUR DUEper
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CPBelt wrote:
calandale wrote:
Did you really have to add to the problem by titling this
thread in the same manner?


So I'm not the only one I see who is savoring the irony!

You're about 35+ years late with this gripe. There is a long, fine tradition of bad subject lines going on long before the WWW, back to the days of Usenet, Arpanet, Bulletin Board Systems, and beyond. I know because been there and done that. Sigh. Now I really feel old!

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My miniature, board, and card gaming blog: A League of Ordinary Gamers


Uh, I am pretty sure he did that intentionally......
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CPBelt
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TedW wrote:
CPBelt wrote:
calandale wrote:
Did you really have to add to the problem by titling this
thread in the same manner?


So I'm not the only one I see who is savoring the irony!

You're about 35+ years late with this gripe. There is a long, fine tradition of bad subject lines going on long before the WWW, back to the days of Usenet, Arpanet, Bulletin Board Systems, and beyond. I know because been there and done that. Sigh. Now I really feel old!

----
My miniature, board, and card gaming blog: A League of Ordinary Gamers


Uh, I am pretty sure he did that intentionally......


Oh sure, now that we pointed it out he'll say that it was intentional. But we know better.
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Hunga Dunga
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Sounds like fascism to me.
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Carsten Bohne
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TedW wrote:
CPBelt wrote:
calandale wrote:
Did you really have to add to the problem by titling this
thread in the same manner?


So I'm not the only one I see who is savoring the irony!

You're about 35+ years late with this gripe. There is a long, fine tradition of bad subject lines going on long before the WWW, back to the days of Usenet, Arpanet, Bulletin Board Systems, and beyond. I know because been there and done that. Sigh. Now I really feel old!

----
My miniature, board, and card gaming blog: A League of Ordinary Gamers


Uh, I am pretty sure he did that intentionally......


Just post a thread titled 'Please, everybody use meaningful subject lines for their rules questions in the forums' and compare the amount of traffic this will generate...
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Martí Cabré

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One way to write a good title is to write it after writing the post, not before.

Usually we don't have the contents of the post in our mind before we write it. We just know we have a 'rules question'.

After writing the initial question, rereading it to be sure we are asking what we really need to know, and then checking grammar and typos for the sake of our readers, then is when we can reduce the content of the thread in one meaningful and distinct title.
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Russ Williams
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For the hard-core devotee of more useful forum (and mailing list) threads, this article is pretty comprehensive:

http://catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html
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Darrell Hanning
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Hungadunga wrote:
Sounds like fascism to me.


Fascism is when you arrest people for doing it.
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K G
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Isaac, dear fellow, what exactly is your question? We're here to help.
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Iain K
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dasher47051 wrote:

Just post a thread titled 'Please, everybody use meaningful subject lines for their rules questions in the forums' and compare the amount of traffic this will generate...


Which as we all know, is a single word in German.

On a related note, I'd like to ask the OP to rename this thread in a more descriptive manner. Lets see how well _that_ works.


As for _why_ people don't more descriptively name threads, I have long supposed that we're seeing an evolution driven by technology. When I was a kid, if you wanted to find information, you needed to be precise. For example, if you wanted to find a book? You needed to know the book's name. Card catalogs were very unforgiving.

In this day-and-age, you search in a much different ways. If you want to find a thread you use a search engine which quickly culls through millions of words to find those threads relevant to what you want to read. People get used to the functionality, and they stop naming things precisely, since the thread name isn't important to finding the information.
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Carl Marl
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I don't actually see a question in the OP.
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Russ Williams
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citizen k wrote:
In this day-and-age, you search in a much different ways. If you want to find a thread you use a search engine which quickly culls through millions of words to find those threads relevant to what you want to read. People get used to the functionality, and they stop naming things precisely, since the thread name isn't important to finding the information.

But looking at a list of thread subjects is still done as well. There's no good excuse for all the zillions of rule forum threads with lame useless subjects like "quick question", "some questions", "don't understand", "help", etc.

(And BGG's forum search can even distinguish between subject and body.)
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Isaac Citrom
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For pity's sake, the thread title is meant to be ironic. Let it go.
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Hunga Dunga
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isaacc wrote:

For pity's sake, the thread title is meant to be ironic. Let it go.
.


Too late!

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Isaac Citrom
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citizen k wrote:
dasher47051 wrote:

Just post a thread titled 'Please, everybody use meaningful subject lines for their rules questions in the forums' and compare the amount of traffic this will generate...


Which as we all know, is a single word in German.

On a related note, I'd like to ask the OP to rename this thread in a more descriptive manner. Lets see how well _that_ works.


As for _why_ people don't more descriptively name threads, I have long supposed that we're seeing an evolution driven by technology. When I was a kid, if you wanted to find information, you needed to be precise. For example, if you wanted to find a book? You needed to know the book's name. Card catalogs were very unforgiving.

In this day-and-age, you search in a much different ways. If you want to find a thread you use a search engine which quickly culls through millions of words to find those threads relevant to what you want to read. People get used to the functionality, and they stop naming things precisely, since the thread name isn't important to finding the information.


Iain, using keyword searches is hardly the only way to search. Scanning a list of titles can be easier and more efficient. At least that's been my experience. Said another way, when we have segregated forums, that is already an automatic search subset. Here on BGG we have further classifications such as a Rules sub-forum. That is yet another automatic query subset. These are done for a reason. There is a very good reason why we classify things, into folders for example, as opposed to tossing every bit of information into one large vat. It works. It's efficient. And, it makes finding things easier.

Moreover, frequently enough it is quite difficult to form a keyword set that segregates exactly the information you're after. Sometimes, you just can't avoid bringing back information about unrelated text. When that happens, then we get into the task of scanning dozens of posts. We've all been there, both here on BGG as well as on Google, for example.

Yet another point is you are assuming that everyone has completely mastered the skill (or art) of keyword searching. I'm pretty good at it. I can find stuff buried in the furthest reaches and deepest nooks and crannies of the Internet. Many people cannot.

The crux of the matter is that BGG is a social site. Descriptive thread titles are an aspect of social behaviour. It is etiquette, which enhances everyday life by making it more pleasant and less confrontational. I leave descriptive thread titles for others so that they can find things more easily and quicker. In turn others do the same for me. Yeah, sure, we can take the attitude you don't need to do for me, and don't ask me to do for you. I don't think there would be many player aids and pictures on this site, then.

(I don't know if this exists everywhere. In Canada we have recently dispensed with the penny. When we had them, beside cash registers there used to be a small saucer labeled, leave a penny, take a penny. When one got change you dropped your pennies into the saucer. When paying, if you were off by a penny or two, you just took them from the saucer.)
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Enrico Viglino
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BGG search is nearly useless.
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Hunga Dunga
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I think it would be cool if threads received a rating based upon usefulness of the thread over the number of posts in the thread.

If nothing else, it would prove or disprove my contention that the larger the number of posts, the less informative the thread.
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Isaac Citrom
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Hungadunga wrote:
I think it would be cool if threads received a rating based upon usefulness of the thread over the number of posts in the thread.

If nothing else, it would prove or disprove my contention that the larger the number of posts, the less informative the thread.


I agree but I don't think it's linear. Sometimes a thread has just a few posts and doesn't fully deal with the subject. Often I find a few pages' worth of posts is very informative. Then there are the threads with many pages that has meandered and gone off topic, back on, etc.

I think it's because the thumb is used to mean several different things. If we had a couple or three properties to thumb, it might help; such as, Fun (or Interesting) and Informative.
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K G
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This thread is rated F (for fun) and C (for cranky.)
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