Poor quality forum questions - a solution?
Poor quality forum questions have been a problem for as long as I’ve been round here, e.g. “Why doesn’t my gadet work?” with hardly any other info. If anyone has the patience and kindness of heart to seek out clarification from the questioner then it wastes their time and isn’t always rewarded. You can click “No” against “Is this a good question?” but I don’t like doing that and so discouraging the questioner, however dumb the question.
Yesterday I needed to post a question on stackoverflow.com (not a forum which suffers fools galdly in my experience) and found they had instituted a structured process for submitting questions, it would seem in order to address this very problem. You can still go back to the old freeform method but by defaut it guides you through a number of steps, thus:
- My question is about: some code / a hardware recommendation / software recommendation … 6 radio buttons to choose from.
- Identify your tags by completing the sentence, “My question is about…”
- Title: Imagine you’re asking a question to another developer.
- Summarise your problem.
- Include background, including what you’ve already tried.
- Show some code which demonstrates the problem.
- Describe actual and expected results, including any error messages.
It seems to me that a similar scheme round here might work well, suitably adapted.
Is this a worthwhile discussion?