is it possible to ask Windows-related questions on AskMe without being sneered at? January 14, 2004 12:06 AM   Subscribe

Do you think it might be possible to ask Windows-related questions on AskMe without being sneered at?
posted by taz (staff) to Etiquette/Policy at 12:06 AM (14 comments total)

Let's just assume that someone may not have the resources or the desire to invest in a different system and all new software, and save the snide remarks. If one finds it impossible to address a Windows question without becoming surly, I urge you to bypass those questions.
posted by taz at 12:07 AM on January 14, 2004

It's lame that people can't hold back and ignore the questions that they can't help answer, but OS-related discussions are famous for ending anything in a flamewar.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:33 AM on January 14, 2004

I don't have my little scorecard with me, but to me the people responding to that question weren't on one of the other teams, they're just typically trashing MS the way most Windows users tend to as well. Hell, the original poster even referred to it as 'windoze', and expressed concern at the trustworthiness of MS themselves. That probably set the tone for the thread.
posted by Space Coyote at 1:15 AM on January 14, 2004

I read it as humor, in the wrong place and time.
posted by Keyser Soze at 1:25 AM on January 14, 2004

Agree with Keyser.
Point out further that it was only one comment.
Suggest being more tolerant.
posted by Blue Stone at 2:08 AM on January 14, 2004

Hey, I took a dig at Microsoft in that thread, but the question of trust was asked (seemingly in seriousness) and I answered as honestly as possible.

There was that one nonsensical babble comment, but I'm not sure even that qualifies so much as "sneering" as it does "spewing."
posted by majick at 6:59 AM on January 14, 2004

I was pleased that when I asked an IE question the other day, people stuck to the answers (although I might have pre-empted them by including a "no opinionating" warning up front).

It IS possible, it just might require a little active social engineering.
posted by briank at 7:09 AM on January 14, 2004

If that AskMe thread is your idea of "sneering", you really should read Slashdot more often...
posted by mkultra at 7:17 AM on January 14, 2004

AskMe is a great place, very convivial and free of testosterone/competition/snarkiness and general beatings-n-bashing. Let's keep it that way. It's an oasis.
posted by Shane at 7:49 AM on January 14, 2004

There are so many problems with software that I think AskMe could quickly become overwhelmed. There are also abundant resources already out there addressing every imaginable problem. IMHO, it'd be nice if AskMe didn't have any software questions at all.

FWIW. I doubt Matt's going to ban an entire class of questions.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:09 AM on January 14, 2004

These things come in waves. There was a rash of music player related questions, and that rash of travel questions, and a wave of home improvement questions; frankly, I thought most were less interesting and answerable than the majority of the software stuff.

I do think anything that ought to be answered by technical support or the help file for a product is a low quality question, as are the "I'm too lazy to google for software that meets my exacting and bizarre requirements" questions. But in general, it's because there are so many problems with software that the category is a worthy one to me.

Just goes to show you that opinions about question quality are going to inevitably diverge wildly.
posted by majick at 10:18 AM on January 14, 2004

Also, though, on the googling thing - if it's an area that you don't know that much about, your search-fu may not be very effective because you don't know enough details or the proper terminology to finetune the query and focus the results. So what may seem easily resolved by a simple search to one person, for another person yields an impenetrable ooze of results.
posted by taz at 11:00 AM on January 14, 2004

Definitely possible, but this MeTa is a good reminder just the same. Considering the relevance of trust to the question in the Windows Update thread, I don't think some discussion of Microsoft's track record was out of the ball park. The one really silly comment was duly swatted down in the thread itself.
posted by scarabic at 11:00 AM on January 14, 2004

I think a certain amount of ridicule is beneficial from time to time, when you are asking a stupid question, especially. Whether this was one of those times is up for debate, however, let's not rule out mockery just yet.
posted by Hildago at 4:52 PM on January 14, 2004

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