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Again talking about KudoZ abuse
Thread poster: Anabel Martínez

Anabel Martínez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:34
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
May 18, 2005

Dear colleagues,

I'm opening a new thread, but not only to complain about the so long commented on abuse of the KudoZ system, specially by some "not logged in" users, but also to propose an answer. But first, let me complain a little bit, and not only for the sake of it, but to provide a context

This morning I woke up with sixty e-mails in my inbox, most of them from an Asker who really abused the system, posting more than twenty questions in less than one hour (many of them she could have actually answered them herself had she looked the words up in the dictionary). You will tell me that I should fix my settings so that I don't get e-mails at night in my time zone, which I'm not willing to do, because most of the times there are not so many questions and I like to look at them. The problem is not this: the problem, in my opinion, is the fact that she seemed to be using proz as a dictionary.

So, even though I know it has been talked on an on about this subject, I'd like to propose something which I believe has not clearly been stated as such. My idea is: what if not logged in users (who don't observe Kudoz rules, probably don't even read them, at least some of them) could only ask a certain amount of questions before being obliged to log in? I mean, there are dictionaries which let you check a couple of words before telling you that you have to register and pay, I'm only suggesting that, if instead of making people pay to ask, we made them register to ask, maybe they would look up those words in the dictionary instead of bothering to register...

Only an idea, sorry to bring back this old topic.


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Alexander Chisholm  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:34
Italian to English
+ ...
Not unreasonable. May 18, 2005

There are plenty of web sites around where "outside" users can browse at will, but are obliged to register if they want to actively participate.

I don't think that's unreasonable.


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davidgreen
German to English
you can change your preferences May 18, 2005

just to not be inundated in the morning with lots of email...
just a suggestion


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Anabel Martínez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:34
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I know I can May 18, 2005

but I just don't think it would be needed if some people did not ask twenty questions in one hour. Even if someone did, I wouldn't mind if the questions were interesting, but seeing something as "biography" in KudoZ is not specially interesting in my pairs, and it bothers me to see some people think we're walking dictionaries. I usually get 30 emails and I don't care, it's not a matter of e-mails, but of abuse of good will.

David Green wrote:

just to not be inundated in the morning with lots of email...
just a suggestion


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Endre Both  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 06:34
Member (2002)
English to German
KudoZ limits planned May 18, 2005

ProZ.com is planning to implement limits on the number of questions that a single person can ask in a limited time period.

These limits are likely to be operational before the end of the year. Non-members (or askers who are not logged in) will only be able to ask a very small number of questions in any given time period.

For the time being, the only remedy is to tweak your e-mail preferences as suggested by David, e.g. by limiting e-mail notifications to logged-in askers.

Endre
FR-DE KudoZ Moderator

[Edited at 2005-05-18 11:29]


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Pablo Roufogalis
Colombia
Local time: 23:34
English to Spanish
Title of my reply May 18, 2005

Anabel Martínez wrote:

but I just don't think it would be needed if some people did not ask twenty questions in one hour. Even if someone did, I wouldn't mind if the questions were interesting, but seeing something as "biography" in KudoZ is not specially interesting in my pairs, and it bothers me to see some people think we're walking dictionaries. I usually get 30 emails and I don't care, it's not a matter of e-mails, but of abuse of good will.


Hello Anabel.

No one can make you a walking dictionary if you don't submit into becoming one.

It is clear that proz won't enforce any measure that will limit the number of entries in the Kudoz database. Obvious things such as forcing a minimum Q/A ratio and even a minimum number of Kudos points aren't even considered.

So it is up to us to avoid being exploited. The future plan of forcing users to register is useless. It looks as if is an advance but it is not. There are many registered colleagues that abuse the system and will continue to do so if they get all the answers they require from the rest.

It is up to us.

Saludos.


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Anabel Martínez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:34
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
thanks! May 18, 2005

Thanks for your feedback, let's hope this implementation will be very useful to all of us!

About the e-mail preferences, as I stated earlier, it's not a matter of that, but of laughing at us translators and abusing the KudoZ system


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Andrea Appel
Canada
Local time: 00:34
English to German
+ ...
Different view May 18, 2005

I think it is such a nice feature asking professionals for help. There are many forums where you can ask for help answers and information on things which might bother you. If I want to know something about cancer, pregnancy etc. its nice not to pay a doctor but just ask. And some people have more questions, which is fine.
Kudoz is a gift to the public from ProZ. I hope it stays like it is.


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invguy  Identity Verified
Bulgaria
Local time: 07:34
English to Bulgarian
Just crossed my mind that... May 18, 2005

... the most adequate mechanism to discourage 'dictionary' questions might be based on *expressing attitude*.

Indeed, it is more than reasonable to convey - somehow - the attitude of answerers (who are, in fact, the driving force of the KudoZ system) to the askers, if the latter fail to meet some established "bon ton" rules. A necessary kind of feedback, I may say. Obviously the "Ask the asker" field does not... um... add enough explicitness to the opinions expressed there

I do share Anabel's indignation; even though I don't get teased by e-mail floods (my notification is off), I've felt exactly the same when looking at some questions.

However, I also hear clearly what Pablo is saying: enforcement of whatever limitations by ProZ.com could easily be interpreted as discrimination (being an 'official' act), and compromise one of the site's most attractive features - its accessibility.

To summarize: we don't want to be treated as walking dictionaries, but we can't actually afford to prevent that through administrative measures. Hence, the only possibility left seems to be to *discourage* the askers of such questions.


I thought about the "Vote PRO/Non-PRO" thing. It works fine, as far as my observations go. What if there's another button there, reading "Vote DICTIONARY"?

If it gathers, say, 5 votes, then the question gets deactivated. That is, it can still be read *and* answered, but answers cannot be graded - which would reduce its attractiveness to KudoZ point hunters, and possibly leave it unanswered. Simultaneously the asker receives an automated message explaining what is going on. "Dear Asker, the KudoZ community has found your question (link to question) to be simple enough to be answered by looking up in a dictionary. Please consider that KudoZ answerers are qualified linguists who would rather focus their attention on questions that require in-depth linguistic knowledge and experience... " (or something like that).

That would actually contribute (IMHO) to a 'fine-tuning' of the positioning of KudoZ - not just a language database but a highly qualified and experienced live linguistic resource - which (IMHO, again) could only be beneficial in the long run.

Technical note: I don't know if there is a minimum number of KudoZ points required to see the "Vote PRO/Non-PRO" button. If yes, the same rule may apply for the "Vote DICTIONARY" one.


Ahem... I'm thinking of an even more eloquent 'expression of attitude' Suppose a question has gathered those 5 votes. Then, when the asker decides to check it s/he gets redirected to some popular free online dictionary for the question's language pair. Or at least to a list of links to such dictionaries Boy, am I mean!


Well, I guess someone whose question has been deactivated in a similar manner would think twice before posting the same type of questions in the future. Even without the free online dictionary thing. What do you say?


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Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:34
Dutch to English
+ ...
Asking askers to register might create non-active duplicate profiles May 18, 2005

Anabel Martínez wrote:

So, even though I know it has been talked on an on about this subject, I'd like to propose something which I believe has not clearly been stated as such. My idea is: what if not logged in users (who don't observe Kudoz rules, probably don't even read them, at least some of them) could only ask a certain amount of questions before being obliged to log in? I mean, there are dictionaries which let you check a couple of words before telling you that you have to register and pay, I'm only suggesting that, if instead of making people pay to ask, we made them register to ask, maybe they would look up those words in the dictionary instead of bothering to register...

Only an idea, sorry to bring back this old topic.


The problem with the above is that askers would just register to ask the question(s) and leave. Should they come back in the future, they will have forgotten their passwords and such and would reregister. The result would be all these additional profile pages that are basically not used.

When I am doing a tricky translation, I often register at specific websites that have the information that I need because this is the only way of getting at the information. For this I have a number of aliases that are linked to e-mail addresses (after all, my SP allows me to have 8). I promptly forget about the registrations and if I go back again, I just register again using another set of "personal data". It really is that easy. Where there is a will, there is a way.

I must be a database administrator's worst nightmare
Especially because every six months I delete the additional e-mail addresses I created and create new ones to ensure I can register at websites some more without leaving my "real" data or having to spend time searching for my registration details. This also ensures that I do not get bombarded by messages from the websites where I registered.

I am, by the way, with Andrea on this issue. If the Internet was more of an open network accessible to all as was the initial intention, I would not have to resort to the underhand measures I described above.


[Edited at 2005-05-18 22:57]


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Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 23:34
German to English
Walking dictionaries May 19, 2005

invguy wrote:

To summarize: we don't want to be treated as walking dictionaries, but we can't actually afford to prevent that through administrative measures.

Simultaneously the asker receives an automated message explaining what is going on. "Dear Asker, the KudoZ community has found your question (link to question) to be simple enough to be answered by looking up in a dictionary. Please consider that KudoZ answerers are qualified linguists who would rather focus their attention on questions that require in-depth linguistic knowledge and experience... "

That would actually contribute (IMHO) to a 'fine-tuning' of the positioning of KudoZ - not just a language database but a highly qualified and experienced live linguistic resource - which (IMHO, again) could only be beneficial in the long run.



Very well put, invguy. I especially liked "we don't want to be treated as walking dictionaries."

A while back, andycw proposed a compulsory automatic search of online glossaries and dictionaries:

"Possible solution:
Why not turn the KudoZ question page into an sutomatic “Glossary Search” page? i.e. Askers enter the necessary information exactly as they would in order to ask a question but, prior to the question being posted, they would be referred to the existing glossary entries for the word, expression, etc…….and have to “decline” all the answers provided. This should be compulsory.

Answerers could then take for granted that the asker has seen all the previous answers for that particular question and the asker would then have to explain why they’re not satisfied with what they’ve found."

http://www.proz.com/post/175038#175038


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António Ribeiro  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:34
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Excellent May 19, 2005

invguy wrote:

...Suppose a question has gathered those 5 votes. Then, when the asker decides to check it s/he gets redirected to some popular free online dictionary for the question's language pair. Or at least to a list of links to such dictionaries


Excellent suggestion. Should be implemented.

António

[Edited at 2005-05-19 06:28]


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