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Are site suggestions still allowed? (Staff: yes, of course!)
Thread poster: Riens Middelhof
Riens Middelhof  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 14:53
Spanish to Dutch
+ ...
Mar 11, 2009

Recently this thread was opened and closed within 24 hours.

http://www.proz.com/forum/site_forums/129710-why_not_a_chat_tool_as_an_alternative_to_forums.html

It introduced the idea of adding a chat feature to the site. After discussing several potential benefits and dangers of this feature, the thread was closed by one of the staff members.

I´ve read the thread several times but I still fail to see where people wrote less than respectful or off-topic comments. A private question to the staff member remains unanswered.

Am I mistaken when I think suggestions or discussions re: site improvements are not welcome anymore? Unasked additions like WWA or the invoice feature (which b.t.w. is rather useless for residents of the EU and countries with stricts tax requirements, used by a whopping 3% of all members) should be praised without questioning?

Last months I´ve seen several comments on the loss of community spirit on ProZ. I feel this might be my Aha-Erlebnis.

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2009-03-11 18:14 GMT]


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:53
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
My suggestion Mar 11, 2009

Just in case, I would like to suggest that playlists of good music for translators are added to the Tools area.

Adequate background music during translation promotes concentration, a balanced target text, mechanical accuracy, and mental agility. For a start, I suggest this for short, urgent jobs about farming.


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 08:53
SITE FOUNDER
For what it is worth, seven posts were hidden... Mar 11, 2009

I looked at the thread earlier this morning; I was not around at the time it was underway or closed. One thing to take into consideration, when evaluating whether or not that thread should have been closed, is that there are seven posts that were made to that thread that are no longer visible.

Again, I was not around and I am not saying it should or should not have been locked. But what you see now is not the whole picture.

To answer your question, of course suggestions are welcome. (But that doesn't mean they not be subject to disagreement or even criticism by peers!)


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 08:53
English to French
+ ...
Suggestions should always be welcome Mar 11, 2009

I don't think that suggestions are unwelcome, and they always should be welcome. However, I think that it would have been nice if the thread you are referring to were closed with a bit more explanation. I expected the staff member who closed the thread to explain why the thread was closed and to provide the staff's position on the topic. It would have been nice to at least be told that the chat feature is out of the question, in which case locking the thread would have made sense. I am sure staff has good reason to lock the thread, but it wouldn't hurt to be a bit more transparent about it. Especially if we consider the site rule that forbids posting a thread on a topic which has led to the locking of a thread. Does that mean we are not allowed to discuss a possible chat feature? I would find that odd. Posting some detail would probably be useful for everyone, as users would at least have some orientation for possible reposting of a similar topic. Lots of trouble could be prevented.

ProZ staff, can we have a bit more detail the next time a thread is closed? Also, redefining the rule I am referring to would be nice.


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 08:53
SITE FOUNDER
You are right, Viktoria Mar 11, 2009

Viktoria Gimbe wrote:
ProZ staff, can we have a bit more detail the next time a thread is closed? Also, redefining the rule I am referring to would be nice.

Thanks, Viktoria, I agree. Mentioning that several posts had been removed (upon closing) would have conveyed a fuller picture to those who were not involved in this case.


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Riens Middelhof  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 14:53
Spanish to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Completely agree with Viktoria Mar 11, 2009

I´m not trying to open up the old discussion, Tomás. I was wondering if we still could discuss ANY improvement to the site.

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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:53
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
I hope we can! Mar 11, 2009

Riens Middelhof wrote:
I was wondering if we still could discuss ANY improvement to the site.


I hope we can. My playlist idea would be most beneficial to many of us.


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Jared Tabor
Local time: 09:53
SITE STAFF
Sure they are Mar 11, 2009

Hello all,

Thanks Viktoria for the input. I have edited my closing post on that thread to reflect the number of posts which were removed.

Hello Riens, as Henry has said, suggestions are as welcome as ever. The thread being locked had nothing to do with it being a suggestion.

By the way, WWA and invoicing were also asked for, and are being widely used.



Finally, Tomás, if you are able to concentrate and translate to that tune, my hat is off to you.

Best regards,

Jared


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 08:53
English to French
+ ...
Suggestion for thread-locking posts Mar 11, 2009

I think that it would be useful if the staff closing a thread clearly stated whether the topic of that thread may be discussed again. If the topic is one that is likely to become heated, I wouldn't mind if a "no earlier than" date was added. So, for instance, the thread Riens is referring to could have ended with a post like this:
This thread is being locked because [ reason for locking the thread ]. However, this topic may be discussed in another thread, provided that site rules are followed, but not before March 17, in order to avoid it being an extension of the present thread.

Or something like that.

*Edited to correct a typo in Riens' name - sorry, Riens, your name means something in French and my fingers refuse to let it go...

[Edited at 2009-03-11 16:05 GMT]


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:53
Italian to English
+ ...
Excellent idea Mar 11, 2009

Viktoria Gimbe wrote:

I think that it would be useful if the staff closing a thread clearly stated whether the topic of that thread may be discussed again. If the topic is one that is likely to become heated, I wouldn't mind if a "no earlier than" date was added. So, for instance, the thread Riens is referring to could have ended with a post like this:
This thread is being locked because [ reason for locking the thread ]. However, this topic may be discussed in another thread, provided that site rules are followed, but not before March 17, in order to avoid it being an extension of the present thread.

Or something like that.



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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:53
English to Spanish
+ ...
A Suggestion Mar 11, 2009

Perhaps someone who is so inclined could start a forum directed to our Proz.com community but not hosted by Proz.com. A forum at an independent venue could eliminate the problem of restriction of freedom of expression we are currently subjected to, which goes against principles of democracy I am sure we all hold dear.

Of course my "Tocayo" and his cadres could monitor it and also contribute to it (that would not only be fair but welcome), but they would have no power to censor it.

Since I am one of those being "vetted", now let's see if this passes.


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 08:53
SITE FOUNDER
Those already exist Mar 11, 2009

Henry Hinds wrote:

Perhaps someone who is so inclined could start a forum directed to our Proz.com community but not hosted by Proz.com. A forum at an independent venue could eliminate the problem of restriction of freedom of expression we are currently subjected to, which goes against principles of democracy I am sure we all hold dear.

Of course my "Tocayo" and his cadres could monitor it and also contribute to it (that would not only be fair but welcome), but they would have no power to censor it.

Since I am one of those being "vetted", now let's see if this passes.

Hi Tocayo!

Of course there are many ways and places (email, other sites, etc.) that people already use to discuss various topics, including the topic of ProZ.com. The ProZ.com forums have never been meant to be all things to all people; they exist only for the very narrow purpose of discussing translation-related topics in a "positive, results-oriented atmosphere." Hence the structure.


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:53
French to English
Re-open? Mar 11, 2009

Viktoria Gimbe wrote:

I think that it would be useful if the staff closing a thread clearly stated whether the topic of that thread may be discussed again. If the topic is one that is likely to become heated, I wouldn't mind if a "no earlier than" date was added. So, for instance, the thread Riens is referring to could have ended with a post like this:
This thread is being locked because [ reason for locking the thread ]. However, this topic may be discussed in another thread, provided that site rules are followed, but not before March 17, in order to avoid it being an extension of the present thread.

Or something like that.


Not a bad idea.
Alternatively, to avoid the same points being made in the new thread, the old one could be reopened after a couple of days cooling off time. Assuming that people whose posts are deleted are notified by email of the fact (which I believe is the case anyway), the mod could post a small note reminding those people (without naming them) in particular of the need to be very careful what they say.

Doing this would also avoid collective punishment that terminates discussion just because of one or two people's actions.


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 13:53
Member (2003)
German to English
+ ...
Get a big block of ice Mar 11, 2009

Thanks, Henry, for explaining about the seven hidden posts. However, I still can't see these as a reason for threadlock; wouldn't it be a simpler matter to put the perps on ice for a while and let them cool down or edit their wicked wordZ? I personally didn't think much of the original suggestion, but it wasn't out of line or particularly offensive, and the option was certainly a legitimate issue to discuss. How that particular discussion managed to spin out of control in seven cases is a bit of a mystery, though if I had the time for speculation, I could probably come up with a few theories.

I really do think it would be more productive on the whole to lock down and re-educate the "difficult" individuals than to lock the threads. Let the discussions of the site suggestions, etc. go on.


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diana bb  Identity Verified
Lithuania
Local time: 15:53
English to Lithuanian
+ ...
How would you define a difficult individual? Mar 11, 2009

Kevin Lossner wrote:


I really do think it would be more productive on the whole to lock down and re-educate the "difficult" individuals than to lock the threads. Let the discussions of the site suggestions, etc. go on.


One that says uncomfortable things?


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