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Make title of replies in forums optional
Thread poster: Samuel Murray

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 12:19
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Jan 11

Hello

I understand and agree that threads should have titles, but replies often don't need titles. For this reason I think it should be optional to add a title to the reply.

Some forum users bravely attempt to follow the reply posting guidelines of trying to come up with a phrase that summaries their reply, but only a small number of replies can really be summarised in a single phrase. And it's actually a disservice to such users, because it means fewer people read what they actually wrote in the body of their posts, and some simply respond to the sentiment reflected by the title phrase without giving any thoughts to the reasoning provided in the rest of the post itself. I've seen several instances of people claiming to "agree" with a post, when in fact they're just agreeing with a title that doesn't reflect the actual post.

Other forum users have already given up on reply titles, and use the "title" either for the beginning of the first sentence of their reply or for indicating whom they're replying to. In addition, some of us try to reduce the flood of posts by responding to multiple posts in a single reply, but then you really can't summarise it.

The reply title field should still be available, but it should be marked "optional". It may be good to remind users that they had not filled in a title, when they press "Post reply" without having written a title (as currently happens when you do that), but that is not the core of my suggestion.

Your thoughts?

Samuel


Sheila Wilson
Erik Freitag
Sarah Lewis-Morgan
Natalia Pedrosa
Thomas T. Frost
MollyRose
John Fossey
 

Blessing Uzuegbu  Identity Verified
Nigeria
Local time: 12:19
Member (2018)
English to Igbo
+ ...
Agreed Jan 11

I totally agree to this idea, I have also found myself struggling to find the right title for my response and this take some few useful minutes of my time which shouldn't be. It should be made optional for those who like to use it and find it easy navigating it and I also agree that there should be no restriction to those who don't want to use the tile to send in their response. This will be a great idea and it will help make things easier for us.

Thomas T. Frost
Amel Abdullah
 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:19
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Totally Jan 11

agree

Samuel Murray wrote:
I understand and agree that threads should have titles, but replies often don't need titles. For this reason I think it should be optional to add a title to the reply.

So many people use the sort of title that I've used in this one and then if you want to quote it you have to mess around, and even if you don't it makes no sense. Instead of doing that, I often flounder around trying to find something suitable but usually only come up with something banal and unhelpful, such as "My 2 cents".

If it were optional, I think I'd still use one quite often, but not always. It's that way in the KudoZ discussion box.


Thomas T. Frost
Amel Abdullah
 

Daniel Frisano
Switzerland
Local time: 12:19
Member (2008)
English to Italian
+ ...
  Jan 11

Samuel Murray wrote:

Your thoughts?

Samuel



There you go. No title.


 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 12:19
Member (2018)
French to English
it of my "topic body" in Jan 11

Yeah. I tend to just copy a bit of my "topic body" into the title. I do copy the most important bit if there's an obvious candidate.

Josephine Cassar
 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 12:19
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
@Daniel Jan 11

Daniel Frisano wrote:
There you go. No title.


Of course it's possible to trick the forum software into accepting a title that would appear blank. Some people do that, but it requires a bit of creativity.


Sheila Wilson
 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
Forum rule number 2 Jan 11

Daniel Frisano wrote:

Samuel Murray wrote:

Your thoughts?

Samuel



There you go. No title.


Yes, it's possible, but you are technically breaking Forum rule number 2:

'Posters are expected to write detailed titles and post in the most appropriate forum.
Because the ProZ.com forums are very active, care is required to ensure the usefulness of the resource. The titles of postings must be as descriptive of the posting's content as possible, whenever possible, making the posting's main point in the title. (Note that for purposes of clarity and organization of the archives, moderators are given authority to edit posting titles and move topics between forums. Moderators can not modify the content of a forum posting.)'

In case you are booted off Proz as a result of this sinister violation of the rules, let me wish you good luck with your future endeavours outside Proz. Nice knowing you. See ya!icon_smile.gif

[Edited at 2019-01-11 13:10 GMT]


 

Colleen Roach, PhD  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:19
French to English
+ ...
Good idea; recent very bad experience Jan 11

Samuel: boy, does this resonate with me! There's another translators' forum I occasionally participate in (not much, to tell you the truth -- just occasionally). I was replying to someone's thread, asking some questions about word usage, vocabulary, etc. I had an admittedly long response, but not 1/2 a page...I struggled with what reply title I should use, as I had a couple of points I was making. I don't recall what I actually put down for the title. Anyway, the thread moderator quickly posted a public critique of me in the thread-- pretty nasty. Actually, one of the nastiest things I've ever had to deal with in an online forum -- nothing I have seen here at PROZ is remotely like this. The first thing I was attacked for by the moderator was this: that my title wasn't as it should be. Incredible! I ended up deleting my whole post, and then I guess he deleted his critique as a response to that. Pretty nasty business...

 

MollyRose  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:19
Member (2010)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Forum rule 2 Jan 11

In reading Thomas Frost´s quotation of the rule, it sounds like the purpose is for organization, etc. and applies mainly to initial posters. It doesn't say "specifically" that replies must have titles. Since replies are already only connected to the initial post, whoever sees them already knows that it is a reply to that particular topic.

 

John Fossey  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 06:19
Member (2008)
French to English
Re: Make title of replies in forums optional Jan 11

The forum software could probably be easily modified to prepopulate the title with "Re:" plus the thread title. It might even help keep the thread on topic, while allowing contributors to modify the reply title if they really felt it necessary.

 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 12:19
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
No, it is definitely required, see screenshot Jan 11

MollyRose wrote:
In reading Thomas Frost´s quotation of the rule, ... It doesn't say "specifically" that replies must have titles.


There can be no doubt that it is definitely required -- see what happens if you try it:

oq7vo5oe0hz3mfmni86j.png


 

Thomas Pfann  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:19
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
  Jan 11

I disagree. I think it works very well with titles for each reply (most of the time). We are all working with language so it can't be too much to ask to come up with a short and meaningful title for what we wrote, can it? The titles really do help me when following a lengthy forum discussion.

 

Jean Dimitriadis  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 12:19
Member
English to French
+ ...
  Jan 11

Adding a non-breaking space to the title does the trick.

 

Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
How about making content optional? Jan 11

Lorem ipsum nonsensum

Thomas T. Frost
 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
There is no rule against no content; only no title Jan 11

 

 
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