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Re: I think Casey West is right

by nysus (Priest)
on Jun 14, 2001 at 15:15 UTC ( #88358=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to I think Casey West is right

I don't know if I want to agree with you on this one. I think it all boils down to whether or not the poster appears to just want to take or do they appear to want to give as well. And I think what perhaps struck people about this post is the poster was the former type.

First, they post as AM. That sends out a bad vibe right off the bat. "Who is this guy?" Not that I think anonymity is bad but you must admit that it sets up an element of distrust: If I give to this person, how will they ever return the favor if they are anonymous? It's a psychological thing going on here.

But what really sets them up as someone who only wants to take is that they offer no kind of background on the project, have no greeting, and nothing like a "TIA". Overall, it just comes across someone who just wants an answer and isn't willing to contribute anything back to PM.

Part of what is important to making a community great is that everyone is congenial, polite and respective of eachother. Being a newbie shouldn't give you license to break these basic social rules.

Perhaps someone could have probed this person a bit more: What kind of software is it? What is your job?, etc. Maybe he/she would have opened up a bit more shown themselves to be thoughtful and considerate instead of a boor. But as you know, first impressions are usually the last impressions, that's just the way it is with us humans. So there is little doubt in my mind that the poster is largely to blame for what happened to them.

$PM = "Perl Monk's";
$MCF = "Most Clueless Friar Abbot";
$nysus = $PM . $MCF;

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re (tilly) 2: I think Casey West is right
by tilly (Archbishop) on Jun 14, 2001 at 16:40 UTC
    If PerlMonks has become a place where AM exists but won't be treated well because AM is AM, then it has become time for me to find friendlier stomping grounds. Welcoming and accepting AM for me is the difference between having this place have a welcome mat and a sign saying, "Open, join in" or having a closed door and a sign saying, "Private meeting in progress."

    As for give and take, what ever happened to being generous? Do you really think that I ask myself, "What is this person going to be able to do for me?" before I answer a question? Of course I don't. If the question is easy for me to answer, and I have energy, I answer it because answering is fun. Now if that person comes back with 50 detailed questions showing no desire to start trying to learn, then I will get irritated. Likewise a person who has a complex project (eg write this software for me) is not going to impress. But if it is easy to answer, then I am optimistic. And if it works sometimes but not others, well it works out well often enough to keep me happy.

    So I have to disagree with the attitude that, "Well that idiot just had it coming. *shrug*" And I disagree because my gut response on seeing the question was not negative, and had I seen it before it got reaped, it would have been one I wouldn't have minded answering.

      I have to agree with tilly on this one. I just started programming in perl about 4 or 5 months ago. I have taken alot from my fellow monks here at PM. I haven't yet had the chance to return the favor and really contribute back because I don't feel my skills are up to the level of where they should be to give advise.

      This is my 6th write-up. My previous five were mainly opinions just like this (well, one code posting). I truly want to contribute back to PM as much as I can, but for now, all I feel comfortable offering is 'opinions' and responses to simpler questions.

      My first couple postings to PM were as an Anonymous Monk. I have to say that responses I got to those particular postings are what caused me to join PM and continue to enjoy learning perl. I thought to myself..self...this is a great place! People here are even willing to help me answer my idiot questions...WOW! I think some postings by AM get a bad rap just because they are that..'postings by an AM' which are viewed as people just trying to take from the system with no plans of giving back. If we shoot down all AM postings, why would those people care to join PM? Had I been shot down in this way, I probably would never have given back either, but since I received helpful responses, I realized what a great place PM was

      Ahh..the odd dog is a strange beast indeed, nobody wants him, but he always seems to be there.
      I suspect that if any of the following in that post wasn't true:
      1. AM post
      2. Way too brief, no sign of a background to the question or the questioner, borderline "do my homework" feel since the possible answers could probably fill a book
      3. Not directly Perl
      then it probably wouldn't have been reaped.

      Personally, I don't think it should've been reaped, but I'm not very surprised that it happened. I suspect that for most people, AM doesn't itself automatically bring out a negative attitude, but does make them wonder a little more consciously about the validity of the post. And like Nysus, I think that's legit, and it's not the same as automatically feeling contempt towards any AM post.

      That said, if you detect a general creeping change in the attitudes here to dismiss AMs off-hand, that's a good trend to halt. I like to think of AMs as potential future monks. People who are shy either from disposition or from just having discovered the Monastery, and who have not yet completely developed good web-board 'social skills', and so I try to give them some benefit of the doubt.

      Here's a thought: Maybe AM posts in SOPW should be rechristened as coming from "Humble Petitioner". AM immediately brings to mind "Anonymous Coward", and the association is almost entirely negative.

      -- Frag.

      But obviously many people's gut response to that post was negative. That's why the post got reaped. The poster should have taken more care to not generate negative reactions. If you are a stranger in a foreign land and you are looking for advice, it's probably wise to try and be polite.

      It's human nature for people to be very leery of one another. And so if there is no indication that you can be trusted, especially if you are a total stranger, you will probably get treated shabbily. So while this guy may have had a valid question about software engineering, the reason it failed is because he failed to practice good social engineering.

      Everything in this world is give and take. You happen to be a particulary generous individual because you really enjoy answering questions. You give advice and take back enjoyment. I extend you heaps of gratitude to you for being that way. You in particular have helped me a great deal. Unfortunately, not everyone has the same disposition as you. All I'm saying the poster should have understood human nature better and that everyone is not as generous as yourself. We may hate or like schmoozing, but that does not change the fact that it works.

      I personally think it would be near impossible to create a more newbie friendly place than PM. I am still astounded to the help I've received here and one day I hope to be able to return all I have taken. One of the major reasons I think this is so is because people take the time to extend the simple courtesies such as "bro", "fellow" or a simple "thanks". It gives PM a real sense of comradery and I think it can be hard to tolerate people who don't seem to want to respect the PM culture.

      $PM = "Perl Monk's";
      $MCF = "Most Clueless Friar Abbot";
      $nysus = $PM . $MCF;

      As usual, tilly, your comment is clear and valuable. And, as often enough, you overstate it through your own impatience.  I agree with everything about the original post except the *title*.  (tinman's response above is sufficient support.)  And again: "then it has become time for me to find friendlier stomping grounds."  Perhaps the monk who considered it is a newbie at considering (like maybe 1 week).  And I know that you and several others have been riding herd on overenthusiastic considering since it started, but still, this is hardly typical (and, in fact, almost unique).


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