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Remove posts titles to clean the interface
Thread poster: Arnaud HERVE

Arnaud HERVE  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:26
English to French
+ ...
Mar 16, 2009

Many users who have been on Proz forums for a long time may not notice it anymore, but the obligation of adding a title to each post is not mainstream.

The common "syntax" is that titles are for threads, and posts are just body text.

About the usefulness of the posts titles I read here, I cannot say they are good or bad. Some read like "I am really brilliant at this short title literary genre", and others read like "I am just putting something in there because you compel me to".

However, since there is already a title for the thread anyway, it may appear that they clutter the interface. It is a commonly admitted principle that, on a large portal like this, everything that is not necessary should be removed.

It can also be estimated that there is nothing in posts titles that could not be written in the post body. It's not like a necessary field to give your password, or numeric data, or such database fields.

Anyway, personally, I don't need them.


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chica nueva
Local time: 17:26
Chinese to English
Post titles are useful ... Mar 16, 2009

Hi Arnaud

Post titles are useful in the Forum Search function. Have you tried it?

Lesley


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JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 00:26
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I like post titles. Mar 16, 2009

It is very helpful to look at the emailed "summary of topic," where all the posters and post titles are listed, when I want to a) quickly find a particular post or b) decide whether I should click through to the forum at that time.

On the other hand, many posters fail (or do not intend) to write helpful post titles.


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Arnaud HERVE  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:26
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
In mail Mar 16, 2009

Ah yes, the list of post titles in mail. I hadn't thought of that.

Personally, I receive mail about Proz forums only when I created a thread. Consequently it is a marginal use for me.

Also, online forums are historically a stage posterior to email lists. Using emails for them is auxiliary. Being online is their purpose.

I write in the title field only what is necessary for my post to be allowed. All my other forums allow me to post without title, and people don't request the post title feature in those forums. They are happy to share a common thread title, since it's a discussion about a common topic.


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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:26
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
I like post reply titles... Mar 16, 2009

...as they help me decide what post replies are interesting and I should read.

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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 06:26
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Your title should summarize your main point (yeah, right) Mar 16, 2009

Arnaud HERVE wrote:
Some read like "I am really brilliant at this short title literary genre", and others read like "I am just putting something in there because you compel me to".


I tend to be in that last category, purely because I typically do not write one post for every point I want to make. So there often is no main point.

To raise one of the points to the position of "main point" would mean that the other points are secondary, and I don't make secondary points.

Another abuse for the post title is to write the first part of the post's first sentence in the title, with or without them three little dots things.

I typically don't read the post title unless the post itself is short, because I have learnt that a post title can give a very misleading impression of the author's point(s).


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Stéphanie Soudais  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:26
Member (2006)
English to French
I am very bad at post titles Mar 16, 2009

I personally never know what to write in the post title section and in most cases I end up with writing "agree", "disagree" or "..." - except today!

Worst is in KudoZ discussion boxes, where titles are also compulsory.

However, some people are good at summarizing their point in the title and I appreciate it (I can skip their content if I'm not interested). So I suggest that titles should be an option, not an obligation.

Stéphanie


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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:26
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
It is already optional Mar 16, 2009

Stéphanie Soudais wrote:
So I suggest that titles should be an option, not an obligation.


They are already an option. You can simply write something like "Agree"/"Disagree"/"Yes"/"No"/"I like it"/"In my case..."... You don't have to write anything meaningful or write a piece of art. Just put something so that others can know whether they are interested in reading.


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Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:26
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
How about putting in a title that's really long and not only summarises your main point, but deals w Mar 16, 2009

ith it in full - before the interface refuses to clutter itself any more, like now?

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Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:26
English to Arabic
+ ...
If it ain't completely wrecked, don't fix it... Mar 16, 2009

I think post titles can be quite useful sometimes (as pointed by others above), and since some of us make use of them sometimes, they should be kept I think.

Those who get a writer's block when it comes to composing a title (like I do sometimes) should deal with it in any way they want (who's that colleague of ours who only puts the first letter of the first word of his posting in the title?)


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Arnaud HERVE  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:26
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Search tested Mar 16, 2009

lai an wrote:
Post titles are useful in the Forum Search function. Have you tried it?


Hi Lesley. I tried it, thanks to your advice.

I made a search with the keyword "VAT".

All the interesting results were in the posts bodies. When something relevant about VAT was in a title, it was either redundant with the post body, or it could have been included as the first line of the post body.

More generally, if I want to know more about VAT, I want to read full sentences that say something about VAT, and not elliptic titles.

On the other hand, you can observe that the titles column in search results takes much room, maybe more than the titles rows here. A wider text cell would enable us to read more of what is interesting.


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 00:26
English to French
+ ...
How do you sort through a thread? Mar 16, 2009

If there were no titles on each post, I don't know how I would sort through a thread when I don't have time to read everything. Perhaps then, I would decide which post deserves my attention based on who wrote it... Do you find that this is a better approach?

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Arnaud HERVE  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:26
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Yes Mar 16, 2009

Yes looking at a thread and neglecting some posters is a good solution. Neglecting is better than stalking.

For most users the chronological order is the solution. Then it depends on how much time they have to read entire threads, and no system can help that.


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chica nueva
Local time: 17:26
Chinese to English
The post titles actually act as a link Mar 17, 2009

Arnaud HERVE wrote:

lai an wrote:
Post titles are useful in the Forum Search function. Have you tried it?


Hi Lesley. I tried it, thanks to your advice.

I made a search with the keyword "VAT".

All the interesting results were in the posts bodies. When something relevant about VAT was in a title, it was either redundant with the post body, or it could have been included as the first line of the post body.

More generally, if I want to know more about VAT, I want to read full sentences that say something about VAT, and not elliptic titles.

On the other hand, you can observe that the titles column in search results takes much room, maybe more than the titles rows here. A wider text cell would enable us to read more of what is interesting.


Hello again Arnaud

Good. What do you think of this function then (from Forum Search):

http://www.proz.com/forum/site_forums/130214-remove_posts_titles_to_clean_the_interface.html#1080428

Because of this function, if we can remember what we or someone else said we don't need to try and repeat it; we can just quote it.

Lesley

[Edited at 2009-03-17 10:51 GMT]


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Enrique Cavalitto
Local time: 01:26
SITE STAFF
Post titles make sense to me Mar 17, 2009

I think post titles add legibility to threads and are useful for notifications. They are also relevant for some technical issues related to forums. Besides they are part of an interface our members are familiar with.

Regards,
Enrique


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