Over the past six-plus months, sanet moderators have become very strict regarding replies to "requests".
This makes perfect sense because they are trying to prevent synthetic/artificial "bumping" of posts.
The problem is that this is a forum, where people exchange information and the exceptionally strict approach eliminates the value of a forum. These new rules also penalize people with GOOD INTENTIONS. In other words, people who try to help moderators by explaining that the posters are violating the rules or abusing the system.
I've been thinking about ideas that will create a more practical, more fair system that does NOT penalize people with good intentions. I have two ideas that I feel may help...
1) Depending on which forum-software used by sanet, is there an option to ignore certain forums when listing the "most recent posts"? For example, if the sidebare in sanet shows only the most-recent posts of other forums, then replies to the Requests Forum (or the abuse of the system by people who constantly bump their posts) -- will not be showcased here, whereby eliminating people's abuse or attempts to artificially alter the post popularity.
2) Better yet, if the posts were only showcased as "recent" posts solely based on the original post rather than the most recent reply date. This would stop all abuse of the system and substantially reduce the work required by moderators like [Login to see the link] and [Login to see the link].
Let's take this example:
[Login to see the link]
This person is clearly a newbie who doesn't appreciate the rules and he does not understand that no amount of bumping will get his request filled, because it's simply not available through the channels that we procure content.
Someone replied and attempted to point-this-out. This poster was attempting to help, and yet he was criticized for not following the rules. I understand he violated the rules and that's fine. However, my suggestion is to find a way that we can do three things:
(1) Reduce the abuse of the system
(2) Reduce the time required by moderators, such as [Login to see the link] or [Login to see the link]
(3) Create a more friendly forum where the experienced, helpful, good-intentioned users that want to help or contribute, are not criticized for breaking rules. This encourages more valuable, selfless and helpful participation, which is the entire point of a forum.
My two ideas are simply to help brainstorm ideas. They may not work. Or they may be bad ideas. But perhaps it will inspire others to suggest similar ideas that will ultimately lead to a better forum here on sanet.
One where people like the O.P. in the link above, are not incentivized for abusing the system. One where people that truly do want to help, are allowed. And one where the moderators don't spend so much time having to enforce rules on nearly 50% of the posts, which is far more than should ever be required to moderate a forum and it ultimately only detracts from the value, in the longterm / big picture (based on the premise of forums and collaboration).
To be clear .. this is not a criticism of any sort. Rather, I'm investing my time to offer a suggestion to help improve the forum. This does not benefit me in any way. It's only an attempt to help, not a complaint or request.