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Site Suggestion: 1 post users

(54 posts)
  • Started 8 years ago by jmcguire
  • Latest reply from Mike
  • Topic Viewed 6224 times

jmcguire
Posts: 552

I have noticed many users only post one message, and are never seen again. I do not know if it is because once their question is answered they never come back (without even saying "thank you" I might add) or if they just forget about the site.

I would like the mods and The Geek's opinion on creating a Guest posting option for those that will only be using the forum one time.

It could use captcha to keep away bots and be restricted to "X" posts from any given IP (which is not full-proof, but it may help some). The guest posts could be separated into a separate section (Instead of Win XP, Win Vista, Mac OSX, etc.) and the drop down that has these would simply be there to determine the area of the question. This "guest" forum could then be purged after "X" amount of days or moved into a permanent forum if information that may be useful to many people were to arise in it. (This of course would be controlled by the mods.) I suggest this because often the 1-post users ask very basic questions that may already be on HTG. Doing this would keep the size of the database down, though I would assume not enough to affect much, but it may help keep it more organized.

As a plus:
I was thinking of this to keep names from being taken up. For example if a user has the name "user123" and only uses the site one time, and an individual comes along who would really like to use that name and will be a regular user, then "user123" would still be available.

Posted 8 years ago
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The Geek
Posts: 2059

You're definitely right, we need to do something about the people that never return, and perhaps purge the screennames of people that never posted or never logged in.

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

For what it's worth, I agree with you both. I was thinking maybe you would have to post a minimum number of times or you would get deleted, but that could just make the problem 'x' times bigger! What about a time limit after your first post? Maybe two weeks with no more activity? Can you actually monitor that?

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

Even a one time poster could have posted a valuable bit of info. Would you want that to be automatically deleted ?

Edit. My error. I just tested on a member I deleted (back when I was moderating), and the posts still remain, but "member" shows as "anonymous", "unregistered".

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

Yeah good point, I suppose not. I take it when you delete your profile all your posts go with you? I think then the Geek's idea of a seperate place is a good one.

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

separate, sorry

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

Colin. You can edit your posts for 30 mins or so.

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

Lol, OK then sorry. I'm still trying to get my head round the etiquette of posting on forums, but I'm learning! I'm still trying to come up with suggestions for this, but nothing springs to mind which already hasn't been suggested, so I'll come back here if I do. Cheers, Col

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

I edited my post (4 up), Please read (I have red face :)

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

Lol, no worries. A lady at my work couldn't get onto the network the other day, so I tried everything I know to fix it. About half an hour, and her network cable wasn't plugged in to her laptop. I bet your face isn't that red. :)

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

I had one like that a few weeks ago. Had wired up a place, Lights, wall sockets, etc. When I came to turn everything on in the switchbox, nothing worked.
I'm standing there puzzled, and my mate said "have you turned on the main power supply ?", Me, "Oh yeah, forgot about that" :)

Posted 8 years ago
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amkeew
Posts: 661

Talking about editing one's posts, why the time limit to fix posts ?

Posted 8 years ago
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jd2066
Posts: 3814

The unlimited time limit was being abused.
People were going back to their really old posts and changing them. There may have been other abuses too but I'm not sure what they were.
After that it was decided that 30 minutes is all that is needed to correct spelling/grammer errors with the theory that correcting spelling/grammer all most people need to edit for anyways.

I don't like the 30 minute limit but I understand why it needed to be set. Without any edit history, there is no way to know what the original post was so someone could edit an old post where they said mean, remove that and make seem like the replies are dumb as they would be critizing a post that wasn't there.

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

Lol, we all do it. Never makes you feel good. What I meant to say and forgot to was that I was wondering if there was a really simple way to fix the original issue (remember that? lol) and I'm missing it? I always seem to make things more complicated. I mean you can't limit the site to particular people (within reason of course) as it goes against its whole ethos of helping people who otherwise would be pulling their hair out. I think jmcguire's idea is probably the best one. I know HP (or is it MS?) do a thing on their support pages with checkboxes saying 'was this helpful?', so maybe something like that here? 10 'no's' and you're out, or something. Col

Posted 8 years ago
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amkeew
Posts: 661

Thanks jd. Got it.

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

Certainly "unlimited" edit time is a pain for moderators. But something like 12 hours would be better I think.

Posted 8 years ago
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jd2066
Posts: 3814

I think allowing guest posting would be fine as long as the guests had to provide their location (helpful to know the users time zone and what technology/stores/etc they have available to help fix their problem if needed) and prove they were not a spammer somehow.

Edit:
@LH: I think that could still be abused.
I think for a longer edit time there are two options:
1. Display the edit history to all users, then at least anyone could see if the function was abused. Right now only the mods can view be the post edit revisions.
2. After the edit limit turn the edit function into an append only function. Then users can at least add addition information to their posts after the edit limit is up.

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

@jd. Of course it could still be abused. But we are only talking 12 hours, not days, weeks, months, like it was.
And normally, a post edit by a member in the the way of abuse, would get that member blocked pretty quickly.

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

Colin. The nice thing about this site, is it's simplicity. There are minor niggles for sure, but, keep it simple.
But also for me, maybe others too, I would like to have a column on the the right of Freshness,
that had V or X or whatever, to indicate the category of the topic, (with maybe, a possibility to mark it, so that I can quickly detect threads I'm currently either working on, or interested in, in the short term).

Posted 8 years ago
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ColinAirlie
Posts: 394

Yes LH I totally see your point, there's minor niggles on every website I suppose. I don't actually have any issues with website, except for maybe every time I come on here I realise how much I still have to learn! :) Having said that, having this wealth of experience willing to answer questions for the layman (so far...) like myself (for nothing, I may add) is what makes this site probably the best one of its kind. Hats off to everyone involved! I do like the idea of the column up the side giving you quick access to other parts of the site though, but we have to remember The Geek does have a job too!

Posted 8 years ago
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jmcguire
Posts: 552

Wow, this topic got very popular. It is nice that the post doesn't have to be deleted if the user is, because occasionally helpful information does come up by 1-time posters. This forum is already better than most in the way it is run, and in my opinion, it is due in part to this section of the forum, and moderators that actually use the forum.

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

i read the the posts every day,but only post something every once in awhile.so if these changes you guys are talking about are done,how will that effect me? i don't want to be labeled a one post user if i don't post for a certain amount of time.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

Mike. I don't think that will happen. The Geek looks after his own :)

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

thanks LH,i was worried a little, i knew someone here would have my back.happy new year to you and yours.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

And all the very best to you and your tribe Mike :)

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

thanks LH, tribe,yes i do have some cherokee in my blood (LOL)
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

LH knows many things :)

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

thats scary (LOL) well iam off to watch the ball drop (on tv) happy new year to everyone.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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The Geek
Posts: 2059

Don't worry, we definitely won't be deleting any accounts for being inactive =)

The only real question is deleting accounts that have never been used ever, since they are just wasting available usernames.

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

thats great news geek,thanks for this great site. happy new year to you and yours. looking forward to many more years here at HTG.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

And if The Geek does that, Mike will be available. Put your bid in now :)

Posted 8 years ago
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Scott
Posts: 5618

Mike, stay online for a bit if you can...

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

LH,you have a great memory.actually i wanted to lose the 104 and just have mpc as my username. geek,if mpc comes availble, like LH suggests,i am officially putting in my request to change my username to MPC. thank you both.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

ok scott

Posted 8 years ago
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Scott
Posts: 5618

Mike, mpc is an active user. We can give you 'Mike' with the same join date but without access to your old posts. Your choice.

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

SCOTT, Mike works for me, thank you. will i need to change any profile settings? again thank you guys very much.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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jd2066
Posts: 3814

I'm not sure about The Geek but I would only consider users with about 10 posts or less who haven't used the forum for 10 months for deleting. Even then I think it would be best to leave those accounts alone as even with 2 posts, it's possible someone could come back later. Far less likely with 1 post but it could still happen.
The main reason to delete accounts is when they take up a lot of space like email accounts.
For this forum, database space is not a concern due the small amount of space text takes up.
Besides the user accounts, this forum already stores the edit history of every post and keeps all the deleted posts around in the database for mods to view if they want to.

mpc104, you have 284 posts and still post within a time frame of a few months so I don't think your account would ever be up for deletion if accounts were being deleted.

Posted 8 years ago
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Scott
Posts: 5618

MIke, please register with 'Mike' as your username. Be quick :)

Posted 8 years ago
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mpc104
Posts: 286

jd,yeah i felt that way too but it never hurts to ask questions.thanks for your comments.happy new to you and yours.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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amkeew
Posts: 661

Deleting accounts to free up user names seems a bit unimaginative. After all, how difficult it is for a person to whip up another user name, if the one he wanted is taken up already ?

There may be members, who may choose not to post (for whatever tinfoil reason) but would still like to browse here. It is unfair to them that their accounts will be deleted just because they are not contributing.

As for database management, how much space could a infrequent or no-post member could take up ?

Posted 8 years ago
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amkeew
Posts: 661

Oh, BTW, Happy and Successful New Year to All.

Posted 8 years ago
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jd2066
Posts: 3814

@amkeew: What you listed has already been resolved in the above posts. The Geek has no plans for deleting old accounts at the current time and the database space is no problem. Plain text takes very little space and I think The Geek listed in his latest article that the server has a 1 terabyte hard drive.

Posted 8 years ago
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The Geek
Posts: 2059

There are a lot of accounts where the person actually never even logged in once... that's what I'm looking at cleaning up.

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

And there are lots of them.

Posted 8 years ago
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amkeew
Posts: 661

Gotcha jd and the geek.

"Never even logged in once". Yes, those dead accounts are worth deletion. Sorry, if I misread your proposal.

Posted 8 years ago
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Mike
Posts: 200

thanks scott, but i lost my join date. not a big deal,but it would have been nice to see that i have been here over a year, again thank all you guys for all you do.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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Scott
Posts: 5618

Join date will be reinstated. Is it okay to leave the 'former member mpc' up for a bit so everyone knows it's you?

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

amkeew. also, you don't have to be registered to browse, only to post.

Posted 8 years ago
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The Geek
Posts: 2059

Updated the join date... requires a database call, thankfully for you I was already in there looking at something =)

Posted 8 years ago
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raphoenix
Posts: 14920

Mike,
Don't worry !!!!
Everyone knows you by your Avatar. (LOL) (LOL) (LOL)
Happy New Year,
Rick P.

Posted 8 years ago
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jd2066
Posts: 3814

@LH: True though some people may want the ability to keep favorite topics in their account.

Posted 8 years ago
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Mike
Posts: 200

geek, your the man! thank you very much. enjoy the new year.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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LH
Posts: 20002

@jd, good point.

Posted 8 years ago
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Mike
Posts: 200

scott, yes that will be fine
rick,good point(LOL)happy new year to you and family.
mike

Posted 8 years ago
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