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Word/character minimums?

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Word/character minimums?

Postby Ye Olde Republic » Sun Aug 15, 2010 3:27 am

I've seen it around before on some forums that there is a 20 word minimum in posts. Has C-C ever considered this? In my warped mind it makes sense to me for some posters that often write incoherent sentences because they've used as few words as possible. If there were a word minimum enforced/applied perhaps these people won't feel they have to be as economical with their words?

"I have to use 20 words in this post anyway so I might as well use all the words I can to make this post make sense."
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Sir Nelson » Sun Aug 15, 2010 3:47 am

Why?

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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Frank_Lloyd_Knight » Sun Aug 15, 2010 4:01 am

(1)What (2)if (3)someone (4)wanted (5)to (6)say (7)something (8)in (9)less (10)than (11)twenty (12)words? (13)Blah (14)blah (15)blah (16)blah (17)blah (18)blah (19)blah (20)blah.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Kosh » Sun Aug 15, 2010 2:26 pm

Ye Olde Republic wrote:I've seen it around before on some forums that there is a 20 word minimum in posts. Has C-C ever considered this? In my warped mind it makes sense to me for some posters that often write incoherent sentences because they've used as few words as possible. If there were a word minimum enforced/applied perhaps these people won't feel they have to be as economical with their words?

"I have to use 20 words in this post anyway so I might as well use all the words I can to make this post make sense."


I would suspect that most people that this would apply to would be less likely to use the minimum word count to expand readability and/or coherency, I would expect to see filler added at the end of posts to hit the required word count. I do not disagree for the most part 'me too' posts tend to be (but not necessarily always) adding much if any value. This is an observation based on past experience of similar systems.
The idea is worth some thought or debate though.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Ye Olde Republic » Sun Aug 15, 2010 4:05 pm

(1)What (2)if (3)someone (4)wanted (5)to (6)say (7)something (8)in (9)less (10)than (11)twenty (12)words? (13)Blah (14)blah (15)blah (16)blah (17)blah (18)blah (19)blah (20)blah.


Don't kid yourself into thinking that I didn't consider that. I just wanted to see who would be the first jackass to post what you posted. :P

kosh: I would tend to agree that we'd see a lot of filler but that's a part of why a enforced minimum could work. If a member were consistently adding half a dozen of more filler words, the 'enforcer' would help said members by teaching them to how to add a few more constructive words. Even based on a 15 word minimum, posts like:

Your MOC was really funny!! I laughed until I fell rolling around on the floor.

could become:
I thought your MOC was really funny, the way you placed that fig doing what it was doing was so priceless and I'll have to remember to do that myself in the future.


That second example took less time to write because I didn't have to 'count the words'. It was also easier because I didn't have to think of what to type because it was actually a real thought. I do suspect that a lot of people writing on the Internet suffer the same affliction I do, they have trouble putting their thoughts down on paper, or keyboard, as it were. Oh yeah, in real life I'm chock full of words to the point where I get going and never shut up but when it comes to writing down my thoughts, I struggle. It takes effort to get the words to convey the thoughts but I try and I mostly expect other people to put in the effort too. <insert> cliche about reading and writing have never been more important than they are in this age because everyone is in essence an author in that the words they type are put down for other people to read for all time</insert>

Also, notice that I just simply ignored Nelson. :lol:
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby JoshWedin » Sun Aug 15, 2010 4:17 pm

Hey Trevor,

Thanks for the suggestion. The Admins will discuss it.

Josh

Edit: You can all still feel to discuss this. It probably won't affect what the Admins decide, but its nice to hear what people think.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Frank_Lloyd_Knight » Sun Aug 15, 2010 4:58 pm

I would find a required word minimum very frustrating, and I cannot imagine that it would really do much to improve grammar or clarity. A lot of people come to this site from all different ages, educational backgrounds and countries. Hence it should be expected that we all have differing capacities for expressing ourselves. Why would you want to make the site inherently more difficult for people? I actually think that imposing minimum word counts or any other language-restrictive measures is effectively an exclusionary act, and that it would discourage some people from using the site. I advocate tolerance. Personally, I have not noticed a significant problem of postings which I couldn't comprehend. For the rare instances when one might pop up, wouldn't it be easier just to respond asking if the person could clarify what they meant?

(And yeah, I was being a little bit of a Megablox with my earlier posting... :P )
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Rick-Ricks » Sun Aug 15, 2010 4:59 pm

I wonder if there is a way to use this only on certain accounts. If there was it could be applied by an admin to users who frequently post single word posts that don't contribute to the topic, instead of applying it to everybody.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Frank_Lloyd_Knight » Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:32 pm

Rick-Ricks wrote:I wonder if there is a way to use this only on certain accounts. If there was it could be applied by an admin to users who frequently post single word posts that don't contribute to the topic, instead of applying it to everybody.


When I read this I hear, "Let's isolate and persecute some indivduals because we don't like how they talk." What do you do when that person comes back and says that the only reason you're treating them unfairly is because of their nationality? What if some people are just beginning to learn the common language here and it takes them 15 minutes to put together a sentence of five words?

And besides, what actually is wrong with a short, simple post to say "Good job!" or "Thanks"?
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Bluesecrets » Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:38 pm

When I read this I hear, "Let's isolate and persecute some indivduals because we don't like how they talk." What do you do when that person comes back and says that the only reason you're treating them unfairly is because of their nationality? What if some people are just beginning to learn the common language here and it takes them 15 minutes to put together a sentence of five words?


As a forum moderator, I read almost all of the post daily and I can honestly tell you that the people in question are actually not the ones who are not English as a first language people. The people who do not speak English as a first language strive to communicate with the best English they can, and when they struggle, they ask for help. I believe the people both Ye Olde Republic and Rick-Ricks are speaking of are the people who do speak English, but go about not fully thinking out their responses, posting random comments that make sense to them, but no one else.

And besides, what actually is wrong with a short, simple post to say "Good job!" or "Thanks"?


Actually there is something wrong with that. It does not promote further communication, which is the whole point of having a forum in the first place, to communicate. If you are going to tell someone they did a good job building, then why not give them constructive feedback? Tell them what you liked, offer advice, ask a question, etc. Its a lot more useful for building your next MOC if you get comments that help you figure out what looks good and what doesn't.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Frank_Lloyd_Knight » Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:10 pm

Bluesecrets wrote:
And besides, what actually is wrong with a short, simple post to say "Good job!" or "Thanks"?


Actually there is something wrong with that. It does not promote further communication,...


I'm more than a little bit surprised that you think that simply saying "thank you" does not promote further communication. Perhaps that comment points to the crux of the whole issue which is that people have widely varying ideas of what constitutes appropriate communication. Why not err on the side of tolerance rather than restricting how people are allowed to think and write?

Also in my previous message, I purposely did not specify English as the language spoken here because I didn't think that this was officially an English only site. Could someone clarify whether other languages are prohibited here?

And from another angle, what about people who are shy? Believe it or not, there are people out there who feel the need to post a couple of dozen short comments in order to see that no one is going to attack them before they garner the courage to propose more constructive thoughts.

This whole proposal seems so random (and Orwellian), I have to wonder if there's another reason for it. Is there a technical issue with the site running out of space? Wouldn't it make sense, then also to impose a maximum word limit?

The only thing that I am trying to convey is to encourage tolerance.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby Bluesecrets » Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:22 pm

I'm more than a little bit surprised that you think that simply saying "thank you" does not promote further communication. Perhaps that comment points to the crux of the whole issue which is that people have widely varying ideas of what constitutes appropriate communication. Why not err on the side of tolerance rather than restricting how people are allowed to think and write?


Thank you are two words, that usually end a thought or a complement or discussion. It does not further anymore discussion. It ends it. The Classic Castle staff wants communication furthered in posts, not terminated. Often a staff member will post in either private messages or on the forum when a one line sentence does not further the discussion.

This whole proposal seems so random (and Orwellian), I have to wonder if there's another reason for it. Is there a technical issue with the site running out of space? Wouldn't it make sense, then also to impose a maximum word limit?


The answer is no. This idea was brought up by a member of CC, not a staff member. The staff has responded that they are going to discuss the suggestion.

Also in my previous message, I purposely did not specify English as the language spoken here because I didn't think that this was officially an English only site. Could someone clarify whether other languages are prohibited here?


You were specific with your statement about pointing someone out because of nationality. Therefore, I responded to that statement. This is an English speaking website which is hosted in the United States. People communicate in other languages both in private messages and in chat.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby architect » Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:50 pm

The admins are discussing this issue. We want to promote intelligent AFOL Castle discussion without burdening members with hard to enforce rules.

We will post an update in the next few days regarding this issue.

Thanks,

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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby eilonwy77 » Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:08 am

I know that I'm new, so take this with that caveat, but I would like to say this: If it is not acceptable to merely thank someone for the compliments that one might have received, then that is not really a culture that I would want to promote. Saying to someone, "Thank you for the compliments" is a very important part of our communication. Can you imagine a world where you could not go around merely saying, "thank you" to people who say nice things to you? What a poor world that would be. I don't imagine that classic-castle would really want to encourage a world where someone might not say "thank you" because it was considered as not fully continuing the intelligent conversation about LEGO castle building. It seems incredibly snobby and elitist to say that you can't thank someone for compliments because it not further more discussion. Saying "thank you" in fact does many things that further discussion. By saying "thank you", you show that you've acknowledged what someone has written, which in fact gives that person more incentive to write things in the future. It shows that you are polite and thoughtful, even though you haven't written a novelette filled with fantastic new ideas that promote further discussion.

I know that this site is trying to promote intelligent discussion, but there is a point where you can take it too far, and to say that you can't merely say "thank you" is taking it too far, at least in my world.
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Re: Word/character minimums?

Postby babyjawa » Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:31 am

eilonwy77 wrote:I know that this site is trying to promote intelligent discussion, but there is a point where you can take it too far, and to say that you can't merely say "thank you" is taking it too far, at least in my world.


I didn't take it as "Don't say thank you." Instead, I read it as "Don't just say thank you." I don't think anyone was trying to discourage giving thanks. They were just saying that it shouldn't be the only thing you have to say.
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