Beefy Boxes and Bandwidth Generously Provided by pair Networks
more useful options
 
PerlMonks  

Don't Retitle This Node

by sauoq (Abbot)
on Dec 17, 2004 at 16:22 UTC ( #415680=monkdiscuss: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??

A newbie user posted Emergency! Our guestbook is getting trashed by HTML! For some reason, kutsu considered this node suggesting it be retitled to "Disallowing HTML Comments for a Chatroom." Out of the first 6 voters, I alone voted to keep it as is.

Hey folks, this is not a reasonable retitling request. It's a really bad one in fact.

The original title refers to a "guestbook" which was appropriate because the question was about the Guestbook from Matt's Script Archive. I gather that the poster has been using it as a chatroom sort of application, but that's beside the point. Furthermore, the title replacement seems to suggest that the question is about <!-- HTML comments --> but that's not really the case. The question is really about user comments that include HTML. Nevermind that the replacement suggestion is also bland and boring.

Bottom line is that you should have a good reason before you consider a node for retitling and, when you do, make a good suggestion for its replacement too. Many nodes need to be retitled because they are too general or offend the eye with all caps, too much punctuation, or what-have-you. Nodes that are formatted nicely and contain one or two keywords that successfully hint at the node's content should be left as is. A node's title is also often a small creative expression on the part of the writer. This is a Good Thing™. Not only does it keep things interesting, it helps to differentiate a node from all the others with similar content. So editing it should be done with forethought and respect.

-sauoq
"My two cents aren't worth a dime.";

Considered by hossman: "retitle: 'Advice on consideration of properly titled nodes'" Final vote: (keep/edit/delete) 19/7/1.
Unconsidered by davido: The majority has spoken.

Comment on Don't Retitle This Node
Download Code
Re: Don't Retitle This Node
by mirod (Canon) on Dec 17, 2004 at 16:26 UTC

    Man was it hard to resist the urge to consider your node and suggest to retitle it "Advice on consideration of properly titled nodes"!

    And ++ to your comment BTW

      ROFL! I just spent my last ++ for the day... I have to remember to give you yours tomorrow. :-)

      --
      Linux, sci-fi, and Nat Torkington, all at Penguicon 3.0
Re: Don't Retitle This Node
by kutsu (Priest) on Dec 17, 2004 at 17:09 UTC

    The reasons I considered that node for retitling were two: the first being that a person with the same problem as the poster might not search for "trashed by HTML"; the second the title I suggested seem (to me at least) to fit the solution that would and was given. However, I should point out I gave my reasons for the title change in the cb and asked if anyone had a problem with my suggested title, could think of a better one, or had any other thoughts, of that castaway meantion she had no problem with the original title and ikegami meantioned another title might be "bite by matt again" (parapharing out of memory lapse) but I took that to be a joke...though it does seem to be the problem. So I considered the node, voted edit, and waited thinking that if people do not want the name change they (like you) could vote keep. As for bland and boring, I care about function more then most else, so for the most part I care not if something is bland and boring as long as that something works (though the intent/humour/personality of the author I agree with)

    Btw. it would have been nice if you had /msged me asking for my reasons (before or after making the thread), and indeed I may have been wrong here...wouldn't be the first time.

    "Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum - I think that I think, therefore I think that I am." Ambrose Bierce

      Retitling nodes makes it harder for the original poster to find them.

        Registered users can receive notifications of replies. Thems the breaks of not registering.

        In addition to receiving notifiction of replies, as chromatic pointed out, registered users can also get a list of all nodes they've created, from a link on their homenode. And if the title isn't clear anymore, they can use Super Search and limit by author to search for specific content.

        janitors are encouraged to /msg the original poster when a title change is done (and a form is automatically provided for that purpose when a node is updated.)
      I'm with kutsu on this. The point of consideration is to raise the idea and put it to a vote - to see which way the preponderance of opinion falls. It's understood that not every consideration passes - let alone unanimously.

        The, "who cares if this consideration sucked, that is why we vote" idea also sucks. It tries to shift the responsibility to where it can never be shifted. Great care needs to be taken before submitting a request for consideration. You can't rely on the voters taking great care to catch your mistakes.

        So criticism of a consideration attempt is valid.

        Consideration should be done because someone feels strongly that something specific should be done. Consideration to float an idea that the person making the requestion is unsure about is hoping that the majority of voters will do the work to figure out what really should be done and make this apparent based on voting.

        You might feel like you are "helping out" by considering a node that needs something done, but a wishy-washy, not very well thought out consideration is not helping. Save your energy for a consideration that you have better insight on and let someone else who is more inspired in this particular case take it.

        In this particular case, one must not fall victim to the temptation to make the question title match the answer to the question. That is the wrong approach for several reasons. When someone is trying to solve a problem, they are unlikely to be searching for something that makes sense based on the answer. Your guess at the answer is often wrong. When suggesting a new title, stick to what the question actually says and try to avoid doing much interpretting of the question and certainly avoid trying to guess what the answer will be.

        The consideration made some mistakes, but so did sauoq. The question was about "HTML comments", as can be seen if you look at the XML form of the question. But "guestbook" should have been left in the new title.

        Let's err on the side of "leave it alone" or at least changing it less rather than more.

        - tye        

      Btw. it would have been nice if you had /msged me asking for my reasons (before or after making the thread), and indeed I may have been wrong here...wouldn't be the first time.

      If this had been meant as some sort of personal indictment, kutsu, I would have. The fact is that this sort of thing happens pretty regularly and I've seen it many times in the couple of years that I've been coming here. You just happened to be the person to do it this time. And it just happened to be this time that I decided to speak my mind.

      I think that people's eagerness to help simply gets in the way sometimes. And, unfortunately, many people often vote "edit" or "delete" on considerations without actually considering anything themselves.

      As for bland and boring, I care about function more then most else, so for the most part I care not if something is bland and boring as long as that something works

      Firstly, they aren't mutually exclusive. Secondly, I maintain that the author's original title was better than yours from the functional standpoint as well. You are correct in saying that someone with the same problem probably won't search for "trashed by HTML" but on the other side of the coin, someone searching for "HTML comments" would likely have no interest in this node.

      Moreover, it would be better if something would be found in the case that a user actually does come along and search for "trashed by HTML". A search for "HTML comment" already returns several results. If someone used that phrase in a title once, then someone else is likely to search for that phrase later.

      I'll toss out the suggestion here that searchability isn't the end-all-be-all for a node title in any case. The vast majority of nodes here won't ever need to be visited again. The same questions are answered time and time again and this is another Good Thing™ because dusty sprawling FAQs aren't nearly as effective as a personal response. (And they do nothing to enroll anyone in a community.) And since the answers are so abundant here, it is also true that most of them serve their purpose and then can be safely forgotten. There is little or no added value in every answer to a question popping up in a search. As I pointed out above, it's far better that something will come back for any search. Finally, the simple search isn't meant to be a fine-grained control. There is Super Search for when you really need to find something specific.

      -sauoq
      "My two cents aren't worth a dime.";
      

        As for /msg me, I don't have a problem with it, as the only part of your writing directed at me was as an example not an attack or insult. I would have liked to have given my reasons, if only to show I actually have reasons for most of the things I do, but I was able to do this anyway.

        Looking back at the title and my recommended title, I seem to have broken my own rule "if I can argue with my recommendation, don't make the recommendation", and I could have argued many of your own points with myself. So ++ for pointing out my error, which fortunetly seems to be a rare error (though through chance or purpose could be argued ;), and ++ for not letting me slip out of it.

        "Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum - I think that I think, therefore I think that I am." Ambrose Bierce

        I think that people's eagerness to help simply gets in the way sometimes. And, unfortunately, many people often vote "edit" or "delete" on considerations without actually considering anything themselves.
        That's why janitors oughtn't to act on considerations with a edit to keep ratio of less than 3 or 4.
      The reasons I considered that node for retitling were two: the first being that a person with the same problem as the poster might not search for "trashed by HTML"; the second the title I suggested seem (to me at least) to fit the solution that would and was given.

      Considering the amount of questions asked over and over again, I don't think it's that common for people to search whether their question was answered. However, while it's nice to cater for people that come here after they got into trouble, you're forgetting about another class of people: people that visit this site a few times a week to read the threads they find interesting, and learn something. Hopefully to avoid problems in the future. As said, "Disallowing HTML Comments for a Chatroom." is bland and boring, and more people will skip it than if it were titled "Emergency! Our guestbook is getting trashed by HTML!". The first suggests one of the theoretical style meditations you often see here, "if you do X and conditions Y, Z and W are true also, V happens". The original title clearly indicates it's about an actual case. Perhaps the 'Emergency' is overdone. But overall, a much better title.

Re: Don't Retitle This Node
by shotgunefx (Parson) on Dec 18, 2004 at 21:10 UTC
    It does seem a bit nitpicky to me (The retitle).


    -Lee

    "To be civilized is to deny one's nature."
Re: Don't Retitle This Node
by PodMaster (Abbot) on Dec 21, 2004 at 13:36 UTC
    I agree with you, but I also think the editors should've stepped in and removed "Emergency!" from the title.

    MJD says "you can't just make shit up and expect the computer to know what you mean, retardo!"
    I run a Win32 PPM repository for perl 5.6.x and 5.8.x -- I take requests (README).
    ** The third rule of perl club is a statement of fact: pod is sexy.

      As the newbie poster who started the other thread, I now agree that using "Emergency" was a bit extreme...however, it was late at nite and I just found how bad "our" guestbook had been clobbered...so to me..it was such... SORRY! And as to retitle, I had enough trouble finding my way around this (to me) slightly unusual format of a forum...so had it been done, I might NOT have been able to locate the GREAT replies, ok?
        so had it been done, I might NOT have been able to locate the GREAT replies, ok?
        Had it been done, the editors would've notified you that they changed the title of your node, so you would've been able to find it.

        MJD says "you can't just make shit up and expect the computer to know what you mean, retardo!"
        I run a Win32 PPM repository for perl 5.6.x and 5.8.x -- I take requests (README).
        ** The third rule of perl club is a statement of fact: pod is sexy.

Log In?
Username:
Password:

What's my password?
Create A New User
Node Status?
node history
Node Type: monkdiscuss [id://415680]
Approved by Old_Gray_Bear
Front-paged by grinder
help
Chatterbox?
and the web crawler heard nothing...

How do I use this? | Other CB clients
Other Users?
Others musing on the Monastery: (9)
As of 2014-12-28 17:00 GMT
Sections?
Information?
Find Nodes?
Leftovers?
    Voting Booth?

    Is guessing a good strategy for surviving in the IT business?





    Results (182 votes), past polls