"Undeclining" an answer? Is this possible?
Thread poster: Robert Donahue
Robert Donahue  Identity Verified
Russian to English
+ ...
Jul 9, 2005

As I go through old kudoz questions (and some not so old ones) I find myself a littles saddened by the fact that allowing anyone to ask questions means that anyone can ask questions. Those who answer do so at their own peril. Sometimes "wrong" answers get picked. That's just a part of the kudoz game. The thing that bothers me a bit is when perfectly good answers are declined because the Asker is not sufficiently well informed to make a decision. I would love to see a way to "undecline" wrongly declined answers. Perhaps this could be done via a "vote for undecline button"? I know that this won't be an issue for future questions since Henry has announced that the decline option was being taken off the table. What about old questions that are languishing open though?

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Balasubramaniam L.  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 17:35
Member (2006)
English to Hindi
+ ...
A good suggestion Jul 9, 2005

Hi Roberts,

You do come up with such nice suggestions. Probably, if the undecline option is dropped in the future design of the kudoz database, it would also affect old questions?

A related issue is that of askers closing questions without grading. It is quite common in the English-Hindi forum that I frequent. Even those questions that have elicited quite detailed and well-researched answers which would have taken up quite a bit of time and effort are insolently closed without grading and no reasons are given for it.

At least for the sake of curtesy, it should be made mandatory for askers to grade the answers their questions have elicited.

In the case of askers not grading a question at all, there is the robot to retrieve the situation by grading the question on the basis of peer feedback, but if the question has been closed without grading by the asker, it is lost to the system.

May be the issue of undeclining and compulsory grading of answers can be taken up together when the next round of kudoz improvement is on the table.


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Maria Karra  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:05
Member (2000)
Greek to English
+ ...
undeclining Jul 9, 2005

Robert Donahue wrote:
I would love to see a way to "undecline" wrongly declined answers.


Hi Robert.
It is possible to have an answer "undeclined". You have to ask the moderator of that specific language pair in which the question was asked, and he can do it if the answer was indeed wrongly declined.
Maria


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Luis Zepeda
United States
Local time: 05:05
Spanish to English
+ ...
Past usage on a web site does not make it correct or accurate Jul 9, 2005

I am a newbie here, but your comments hit right on something I have noticed about the Kudoz answers. Many answerers just quote a word with several web sites as references where the word was utilzed out of context or for a different connotation. The fact the word is used in a Web site does not make it correct, however the poster takes the most popular reply as the correct answer. Just my "penny's worth" contribution

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paula13  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 09:05
Member (2005)
Not everyone can be the judge.... Jul 9, 2005

[quote]Robert Donahue wrote:

"The thing that bothers me a bit is when perfectly good answers are declined because the Asker is not sufficiently well informed to make a decision."

Robert, I really like your suggestion about undeclining wrongly declined answers. I think as language professionals it is our obligation to seek excellence. Kudoz or no kudoz, this should be about helping each other deliver good translations not about four more points on someone's profile.
As far as perfectly good answers being declined,I was recently (literally) made fun of by an asker and an answerer for my answer to a Kudoz question because neither one new the meaning of the word I had suggested. So, I quoted the person that coined the term, which only made matters worse because the question was related to accounting and economics and they thought the person I was quoting was a philosopher. Neither one of them took the time to read through any of the reference materials I used, or even bothered to check the dictionary definitions I provided. Needless to say, my answer was declined, which made me feel like a fool. Not only because I had spent all that time doing research for someone who made fun of me, but also because they automatically assumed I was wrong! I personally don't think everyone is qualified to judge answers.
In fact, in most professions, those who judge or make certain decisions do so because they are more highly qualified than others, but then again in most professions you have to meet certain qualifications to work, which is not always the case in translation. I think there should be a more effective way to decide which answer goes and it should be based on research and reference materials, not just whether or not someone likes the answerer or his/her suggestion. In one of the other threads someone said they didn't want to think of kudoz (or proz, I'm not sure) as a "knitting circle," and I agree with that position, sometimes answers are declined based on personal opinions and not linguistic facts, which is a shame, because not only will that word go down wrong in the glossary, but it will also affect their business when they deliver to their clients.


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paula13  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 09:05
Member (2005)
Luis is right Jul 9, 2005

Luis Zepeda wrote:

I am a newbie here, but your comments hit right on something I have noticed about the Kudoz answers. Many answerers just quote a word with several web sites as references where the word was utilzed out of context or for a different connotation. The fact the word is used in a Web site does not make it correct, however the poster takes the most popular reply as the correct answer. Just my "penny's worth" contribution



Not everything on the internet is true or right. There are many webpages with atrocious use of vocabulary and grammar and incomprehensible translations, and there are also pages where the word you're looking for may appear in a completely different context. What ever happened to Saussure and meaning vs. connotation? Research is about more than a couple of hits on google!


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Luis Zepeda
United States
Local time: 05:05
Spanish to English
+ ...
Thank you Paula. Jul 10, 2005

thank you for stating what I forgot to state. That was precisely my point. A lot of the replies just have links and quote a word without committing themselves to verify that the word which was utilized was set in the proper cocntext or has the correct meaning. I believe that when you translate you must be true to the meaning of the original writing and not just go off on a tangent.

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