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    28 Replies Latest reply on Aug 28, 2008 8:36 AM by DMIGUY

    Posting For The Sake of Posting

    Milleisen Scout

      There are members on here who seem to post without adding any real substance to the conversation. Unless you can offer some insight into the issue at hand, is it really helping to say something mundane and generic? I know this community is fairly new, but if the powers that be don't start to reign in some of these rampant posters of fluff, people are quickly going to leave and never come back. I love the concept, but without regulation, this site is going to become Bank of America's version of Craigslist, where there are so many SPAM posts that anything of value gets buried.

      The obvious elephant in the room with a site like this is that most of us would like to use it as a networking tool which will hopefully lead to some business. That said, there is a big difference between answering a post with "I can help you, call me" and giving a useful explanation to the question at hand, then offering to help offline. Since BofA doesn't seem to address any SPAM, regardless of how obvious, I propose that we all be as proactive as possible in reporting SPAM and useless posts. I get that they are trying to form a critical mass, but letting anything and everything through is going to turn people off. Maybe if as a whole we reject the SPAM by reporting it, the moderators will listen.

      If you want to see what an insightful post should look like, see pretty much anything by Adducent or Lighthouse. Each of their responses are always as specific and granular as one can be in a forum like this. You both are seperating yourselves from the pack.

      So unless you have some genuine insight into a question, please stay on the sidelines.
        • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
          amspcs Ranger
          I have to agree. All the unncecessary spam only clutters the forum and makes it harder and more
          time consuming (wasted time) finding the legit posts.

          I've said it many times before and I'll say it again: If someone posts an issue you have expertise with and can offer valuable anwers or assistance about, that's what you respond to, and in this case it's OK to offer your services. But pure spam with no informational value other than a generic message and/or "call me" only serve as clutter.


          • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
            Lighthouse24 Ranger
            Milleisen, what a wonderful compliment. Thank you!
              • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                Archangel Adventurer
                You're right of course, at least for the most part, but let us make sure we have a proper definition for "spam". Someone posting a question and getting answers that say "yes I can help you, call me" or "please email me at <emailaddress>" may be exactly the right answer. I know becasue I've gotten a few of those and have benefited in one way or another from all of them. Besides, you said yourself, this is about networking. I would define spam as a blatant sales pitch in the middle of a thread. Especially an off topic sales pitch. My fear is that a lot of what you or others may see as "posting for the sake of posting" isn't that at all. I've learned that hard way that it can be a bad thing to go visiting other peoples' intentions. The truth is, most people DO NOT post just for the sake of posting. Everyone's outlook does not fit the same mold.

                  • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                    Iwrite Pioneer
                    I agree with Archangel. I take things off-line when I feel it is not appropriate for everyone. If we have to get into details then it should not be here. I also believe that because you may not get the answer you want, doesn't mean that the person did not attempt to answer your question.

                    We are all at different levels and it is reflected in the answers we provide. I like the short answers as much as I like the long ones. I think a good many of us do need to talk with the SBA or SCORE. Some of the questions could have been easily answered if we had talked to someone or at least put together a business plan. I think some may not like my answers or others but sometimes the best advice is to have them talk to someone impartial. Some of us post answers that are designed to sell our services or product, not really give a person the best solution. When this happens, it is great to hear someone say, "go talk to someone who is not trying to sell you something." It is both great advice and a great warning.

                    But that is my opinion.
                      • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                        puzzleman Tracker

                        I do get tired of seeing some of the posts on here looking for or giving away tons of money. But I believe they should be there. I feel that this is a forum open to all people, no matter their experience or knowledge.

                        In every group of people you have people that talk more than others, more that are quiet than other, more that know more that others. That is what the real world is. I read more posts that I respond to and learn from them.

                        I say leave the doors open for all and not restrict anyone's freedom to discuss on this site.

                          • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                            Jerica Newbie
                            I've been in a lot of forums for various things like say Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings and stuff like that, and in all of those forums they have a name for a person who posts just to post. I can't say it here because it's not a very nice word but you know how people are called "attention" blanks? Well fill in the blank and say "post" instead! There are always people in forums who want to make that little number beside their name go higher or they want to earn more little stars and thingies. It's the scourge of a good community, IMHO. That sort of posting really brings a forum down and makes the content pretty void.

                            I've definitely noticed a few people here who post and post and post and it seems like it's just to see their name or exercise their fingers on the keyboard. They don't add anything to the conversation, and sometimes they just repeat what the original poster said, which I find really confusing. Some people just ask the same questions over and over, too.

                            I've been on here since it started but I don't post much because most of the time I read posts and feel like I don't have anything to really contribute. I'm not a major business person but I run a blog and make a little money on it. I don't have a business plan and I'm not in need of money from anyone for startups and such. I'm learning as I go and picking through posts to see what I can use. Like Phillip posted something helpful the other day so I contacted him. I dont see the use in posting all over the boards the same message over and over.

                            The posts asking for money and the MLM stuff is personally EXTREMELY ANNOYING! I want real actual conversation with people, not just people who see me with dollar signs in their eyes.

                            That's my story.
                            • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                              amspcs Ranger
                              Puz, I understand and appreciate your open door policy. Yes, it IS a free country.
                              But, I feel 'free' does not mean freedom to infringe and annoy. I regard
                              forum spammers in the same regard as unsolicited fax advertisers and
                              telemarketers--unwanted unnecessary annoyances.

                              This isn't an advertising forum. If you want advertising, turn on the TV or buy a newspaper.
                              This is a business forum for those who need help and offer help, and for business networking.
                              Networking is NOT the same thing as mass marketing in my opinion.

                              If you have something to say of general interest to the public (not just 'buy from me because
                              I need the money) or in helpful response to a specific post, go for it. Otherwise, if you want to advertise your business, go buy an ad in the newspaper.

                              Sorry, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

                                • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                  puzzleman Tracker
                                  I agree that this isn't an advertising forum. However, what you find annoying, another person may not. It is very hard to determine what is in the best interests of all when one connot know all of everyone's interests. That is why I say leave it wide open.

                                  Concerning marketers, they will not last long. They are looking for the quick hit and move on again. If they are really concerned about making relationships, they will contribute. If not, so long, see ya!
                                    • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                      gov_biz_help Wayfarer
                                      I agree with puzzleman in part; the site should be wide open, including the voices of marketers. I appreciate the wisdom of the SBOC team in establishing the "Business Classifieds" forum, which is specifically for sharing ones wares with whomever may be interested. Maybe the effort should be to encourage usage of that forum instead of banning folks who want to make a little money. After all, isn't that what they'er in business for?
                          • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                            snipperred Scout
                            Hmmm...I agree and disagree somewhat. Allow me to qualify my position. I agree with the community guidelines. However there is some subjectivity involved in determining what is appropriate and helpful.I agree in particular that Adducent is a model contributor and wish he would comment more often. However, I am not a professional writer/ consultant- yet. Dennis, if you feel like disagreeing with me here then know I will respect your opinion and take your advice seriously. However, there are only a select handful of contributors here that really impress me. I welcome most of their involvement.

                            I disagree that insightful posts "should" look like that. If you can, then great. However, if you want to make an effort, then I think you should do so. I don't want this to be a "stuck up" community. That reflects my own preferences and interests. I can appreciate the representation of differing views and abilities. So while there are obviously high standards set by contributors such as Lighthouse, I personally welcome views from novices and ametuers. General commentary adds to the diversity and open nature of the community. Many people come looking for help rather than giving help. Some make poor efforts at answering and I think it is apparent many are unclear about their needs. Both represent opportunities for improvement- a good market for the solutions providers to jump on or at least use to distinguish themselves.

                            Making an effort usually results in some form of evident clarification such as an "answered" point, reciprocal participation by the quality contributors and vice versa, and insightful responses pertaining to the value of contribution- i.e. noting good advice or on occasion, disagreement. The "report innappropriate" feature is self-explanetory and quite available. However, if you lack the courage to report a post, I think this has something to do with the subjectivity of interpretation and the value this community places on open involvement at various levels of ability.

                            The issue continues to come up, but I don't see too much that meets the extreme definition of innappropriate. I do agree the site moderators should be stepping in on the occasions that do happen- either by initiating warnings/ their own comments to let people know there is some enforcement, or at least responding to complaints and taking appropriate action. However, as far as the lower quality range of contributions, I think there is a value to them too. In my opinion, the range of contributions made in this community are perhaps a closer reflection of the actual range of business perspectives out there. I participate in other communities that are "expert only" and could criticize them for being too self-aggrandizing and perhaps a bit out of touch. Other social networks are a little too open and I think pretty low in substantial content- sacrificing tough love/ directness for emotional support. In my opinion, the SBOC moderators do a good job by some of their allowances and non-actions- despite some of our complaining. Really, how seriously do you take your own view?

                            I think the SBOC represent real world and is a good place to get a reality check. I welcome constructive criticism of my own contributions. However do not be surprised if I dissagree or don't follow the advice immediately. I think a lot of my views are "one percenters" and outside-the-box. Sometimes I post for the sake of it because it represents my interest to make my unique perspective known. On other occasions I refer people to look into me and what I have to offer because I think it is worth their while to do so. You are welcome to critique me publicly or contact me directly. I'd rather be told that I'm making mundane and generic posts rather than be allowed to walk around with my shoes untied. As the saying goes, "I didn't get all dressed up for nothing!"

                            Consequently, having put a focus on the problem and recommending what should be done- what solutions, if any, do you have to offer that can actually have an effect on the problem? I offer my site as a social network where personal, professional, and organizational interests can be represented simultaniously at the member's discretion. However, I also exercise my own discretion in booting out anybody "I don't like". It's sink or swim, but the goal is to create a community of choice. If you don't take a risk, then how do you expect to compete with the status quo? If you find people extending themselves inadequately or in a manner you feel is unwelcome for the direction this community should go- then please refer them to me. I'm happy to help and welcome the opportunities.
                              • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                Milleisen Scout
                                snipperred - all excellent and valid points. The gist of my problem is that there are people who are posting that clearly have a personal agenda to push (beyond subtle things like a signature at the end of a post), and make little effort to add any value to the conversation. I'll be the first to admit that when someone asks for professional advice, I'll hand out my contact info, but I rarely do it without at least trying to enrich the discussion. I completely agree that this should not be an elitist community that only seasoned experts should have the right to post on. And there are some cases when people explicitly ask for help, and if we all want to throw our contact info, that's fine. But if every response to every question is a uniform answer, which always ends with self-promotion, is that really adding any value?

                                My solution? Members need to continue to red flag these kinds of posts. If the same contributor continues to have posts flagged, they should be warned, and it persists, banned.

                                I'm not looking to censor different views. In fact, just the opposite. I want to hear the ideas that perhaps the rest of us never thought of. While a mundane comment like "Do you have a CPA?" are fine in certain situations, if that's more or less the all the contributor says, I'd argue that the spirit of that comment was not to help the person who asked for help, but rather to promote themselves, their services, or their organization.
                                  • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                    snipperred Scout
                                    Very well, everybody. Thanks for the comment Milleisen. I'm inspired to organize a solution. Please refer to the new post Online Business Consulting.

                                    So hey, what was this talk about some of you meeting in person? Why wasn't I invited?!

                                    Can I be part of the SBOC club now?

                                    He is about to start and I'm not going to have as much time to navigate the mess either. It serves my interest to solve the problem and encourage ongoing involvement by the quality contributors- otherwise I might leave too. So thanks for bringing up the issue once again and stimulating some discussion on solutions. Please check out the post and get on board. Be advised, the thread could cause you to get an e-mail everytime a new member joins if you are set up for that.

                                    Now I won't have to keep plugging my business!


                                      • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                        Iwrite Pioneer
                                        snipperred and everyone else,

                                        I posted a couple months back about getting together, but only a couple of people seemed interested. I wanted to get together and continue the conversation we were having online. DomainDiva and I met because we are both in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and it was a great conversation about business. Others have asked about doing a conference call, and I am open to it. I think it would be great if members started to meet and network according to their locations.

                                        The bigger question is: should we try to organize a conference at a nice location where we can all meet for a weekend of networking? It would be really cool if Bank of America set up video conferences for those who could not attend, but that might cost too much.

                                        I tried to let as many folks as possible know, I don't like to exclude anyone. However, the feedback was lukewarm. I am still open to doing something. Thoughts, comments, concerns?


                                          • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                            snipperred Scout
                                            Sounds good. That's part of my concept for Area Light- real networking on the online social networking media- and by location. I just set up a group NorCal for Norther California and one of my other members just set up Montreal. Dallas/ Fort Worth would be a welcome addition.

                                            I just bought a camera for use with Skype. We just installed it for free this week and I haven't noticed any issues affecting performance of my computer. My wife just found her childhood friend on an international classmates site and next thing I knew they were streaming live for free. We just didn't have our camera set up, but the live picture and sound on the other end was fantastic. I don't plan on travelling anytime in the near future but plan on arranging conferences in my area and online. I think it would be great for us to get a bunch of people together on a Skype meeting- except that I might be compelled to shave!!!

                                            Anyways, I've got a recommended agenda between using Skype and also Microsoft Office Workspaces Beta- I just signed up for the collaborate document environment and the video tutorials are pretty cool. Another set of cool apps for media mixing, screen capture is availabe for free- NCH software suite. I haven't had time to get into it all but this is something a bunch of us could cover and talk about at the same time. I'd be interested in discussing how the free VOIP technology, document sharing, recorded internet screen sessions, and other related topics can help business and be integrated on websites/ social networking applications. My suggestion is to actually meet in person for those who can, join an online video conference, try to record the event, and document resources/ meeting minutes for those who can't be part of the live event- want to join in on an ongoing collaboration. Otherwise I'd just be working on it myself and that wouldn't be as much fun!
                                              • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                chefstacy Wayfarer
                                                Hey Everyone,

                                                Even though i am not in Texas i am in Arizona i would love to get involved with the conference call, I believe networking no matter where you are is helpful to anyone and everyone. So if you do decide to do this please keep me in the loop, ok. Thanks..

                                                Chef Stacy
                                                  • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                    LUCKIEST Guide
                                                    Posting For The Sake of Posting,

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                                                    a FreeBridge conference call is quick and easy. Simply choose the conference
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                                                    Please include me in the conference call, LUCKIEST
                                                      • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                        Iwrite Pioneer
                                                        Luckiest, did you ever hear back from DomainDiva about the three of us getting on a call? I will email her about it.

                                                        As for the huge conference call, I think we need to determine who wants to coordinate it, are we going to have an agenda, and the time and place for the meetings. Finding a location where we can get together in our individual locations is going to be a task.

                                                        I suggest we get the details down before we make a broad announcement. But that is just a suggestion.
                                                          • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                            LUCKIEST Guide
                                                            Iwrite, Yes I agree with you. Lets start small. a Group of maybe 5 to start.

                                                            You, Me, Domain Diva and maybe two others. Lets start this off of B of A and see where it goes.

                                                            Long time ago you emailed me your phone number. can you please so it again.

                                                            My email is Thanks, L
                                                            • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                              snipperred Scout
                                                              Hi there,

                                                              Thanks to those of you who are supporting my solution on the thread "Online Business Consulting". Did you get my thank you e-card? I thought it was so funny. What do you think? I'm happy to incentivize the participation with the courtesy of a personal acknowledgement. School's about to start and I'm likely to focus my participation along this thread to save time while continuing networking.

                                                              As you can see, the newest poster comes across as a potential example of what we have been discussing. He didn't leave profile information but I was happy to take a look into him and respond to one of his posts as a courtesy.

                                                              Finally, the SEO tip I left as an example of the advice value available here is now substantiated. In less than two days, Google result for Online Business Consulting puts the thread at #4 just a couple spots behind SCORE. So for those of you who do contribute advice or have an interest in picking up clients through networking on this site, I think there is another incentive for you to participate.

                                                              Here's the link.

                                                              Now those of you who have taken an interest in influencing this community for the better by participating in the conversation "Posting For The Sake Of Posting" have the opportunity to make yourself known at the top of the list, demonstrate a proactive reinforcement of the community guidelines, and have something to offer new members who's posts you find dubious toward the desired professional culture etc. The thread is obviously sink or swim. It can quickly sink beneath the flood of recent posts out of sight- much like many of the new member's who post- whether they be constructive or annoying. So I will offer it to new members on occasions I visit back and appreciate anyone who pays it forward. The final utility is now I will get an update into my e-mail for any member who introduces themselves on this thread. The same is true for anyone else who posts there.

                                                              I believe you can update your e-mail watch lists if you do not want to receive your updates. Not sure if you can choose specific threads to take off. If you find the thread annoying, then I will consider stopping my promotion of it and sign it off. If you think sending the e-cards in innappropriate then I will consider stopping this as well. Overall, I think this is a good thing and a pre-composed way we can all support a proactive solution without constantly needing to bring the subject up again.

                                                              Thanks for the conferencing tool Luckiest. I will research it. I'm going to be a little too busy to organize the conference myself. I'd like to be invited when it does happen and I agree starting small will give us a chance to test it out before promoting major conferences. If no one takes action to make it happen, I will eventually put together my own and invite you all.


                                              • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                Milleisen. Thanks for the compliment and the post. I know that this site and community is heavily surfed by a lot of "observers" that don't necessarily post a specific question or participate in answering ... so each of us that respond to posts and contributes should try to not only answer questions as best we can with some detail, but we should also inject value so that passive readers gain something by it as well.
                                                • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                  intechspecial Ranger

                                                  I would have to agree with this creator of this forum, as this is a relevant problem.
                                                  • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                    Lighthouse24 Ranger

                                                    Question (tongue-in-cheek): What happens when a thread (about self-promoting posts that don't add any additional insight to the topic under discussion) begins to stimulate self-promoting posts that don't add any additional insight to the topic under discussion?

                                                      • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                        LUCKIEST Guide
                                                        Posting For The Sake of Posting, Kudos Lighthouse, Very Appropriate
                                                        Additional tips: (MORE Tongue in cheek) Here are some extra tips to help
                                                        • If you made any edits before you got an account, you might be interested in* assigning those to your username* .
                                                        • If you want to play around with your new skills, try Freecell.
                                                        • Click on the Edit button on a page, and look at how other editors did what they did??.

                                                        • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                          snipperred Scout
                                                          These latest responses just got me thinking about whether or not my suggestion/ action could be perceived this way. It was awefully funny (cough).

                                                          Answer (raspberry) report those useless or spam comments as innappropriate, or offer them some constructive advice- especially when they are respectful and ask for it directly, or just ignore. I agree there are two manly generic or mundane comments being made around here. I can see how my part of this thread might be perceived in that class. (again, raspberry).

                                                          I appreciate a good laugh and thought some made by the best of this community to be extremely laughable (just warming up, thanks). I think I've got a bit of a talent for this myself- but certainly have a lot more to learn from the pro's. I recognize hinting is a nice way of letting someone realize what they are doing wrong with out pointing them out and offending them. In fact, that's why I replied to the original post in the first place. I thought it could quite probably be directed at me.

                                                          So I think I'll join the "quiet observers" here while I go to school with the exception on following through with what I offered to do to support this community. I'm your huckleberry. So here's my best shot at playing along...

                                                          Let me offer my special thanks to all those who have made this community what it is today (tongue-in-cheek). O.K. I'm out. C'ya!

                                                            • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                              intechspecial Ranger

                                                              I am not quite sure I understand the rasberry and coughs but I think some cold medicine might help.

                                                              Any ways I must say I am in agreement with this being a relevant posting, and we need to (ahem) make some changes to implement(achoo) spam prevention(strawberry).

                                                              I hope this(rasberry-hack) we can stand strong in our(achoo-bananna) to prevent spam.
                                                          • Re: Posting For The Sake of Posting
                                                            DMIGUY Adventurer

                                                            Your concepts are sound and your thoughts are shared by most. But this forum, as with most "business" forums, will surely evolve into an ongoing infomercial.

                                                            Posts like try my "free" program, or are you "serious" about a new business, or the like, doing no more than exposing more and more users to the myriad of MLM's and such will permeate this site as it has done on others. I've gained contacts from this site, and others can and should do the same. However overtly soliciting within this forum without first providing some evidence of expertise by way of a coherent response is counterproductive. It will make users more and more hesitant to post their questions wherein they are looking for advice first and resources later.

                                                            That said, those of us that truly want to gain the knowledge and experience that the likes of Luckiest and Lighthouse, and now yourself, can share, will tune out the viral posts and make the best of this site.