Skip Navigation

Disappointing start

Travel Forums System Talk Disappointing start

Page
  • 1
  • 2

Last Post

1. Posted by plesbit (Budding Member 14 posts) 10y

Well I was really pleased to find this forum and start interacting with fellow travellers but it's been about the worst welcome to a forum I've had!

A quick glance at the posts I've made so far should show that I am trying to help fellow travellers with any information I can provide.

My post to this thread was no different. Someone asked about driving from Cairns to Brisbane and what to do on the way. I answered, but I committed the heneous crime of posting a link to my travel diary and now I've been reported as a spanner. It's a travel diary with some photographs of my journey along the exact route being asked about - there's nothing commercial about it, it's just an illustrated blog, and it is directly relevant to the question that was asked. I even went to the trouble of telling the OP of the thread to skip the bit between Cairns and Townsville because we went inland and he would not have time for that but that the bit from Townsville south would be more useful to him.

How is that spam???

Thanks, whoever you were that reported me, you've really made me feel welcome and pleased to have taken time out to try to help someone. I'm a member of many forums and I've never ever spammed one. I don't intend to start here.

2. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 10y

I'm sure one of the moderators will be along shortly to give you an official answer! In the meantime, just to let you know that the "spam" feature also lets moderators know that personal information has been included in the post. As per TP rules, you can't link a Website till you've accumulated a certain number of posts. It's really just a precaution. Welcome to TP, though! Don't let it spoil your time here - it really is a wonderful place.

3. Posted by plesbit (Budding Member 14 posts) 10y

Hi there tway,

Thanks for your response. My post has been cleared as not spam, presumably by a mod, so naturally I am pleased about that, though I am still miffed that it got reported in the first place.

I've read and re-read the rules and I haven't seen anything which says you cannot link to a relevant website. The only bit I noticed was this:

3. NO website postings for promotional purposes are permitted. If the postings are genuine responses to questions, we will permit them. Any website postings that look like they are only there to promote a website rather than help other members will be removed.

I was satisfied that my reported post was genuine enough in its intentions and content, contained nothing commercial and was relevant to the question asked so saw no harm. Anyway, a mod appears to have agreed, so I am happy again and look forward to be able to help people in the future. :)

4. Posted by beerman (Respected Member 1631 posts) 10y

Simon,

Please bear in mind that Respected Members and Travel Gurus can also mark a post as spam. They are given that authority after achieving that status. They are not always correct. It has been our experience that the majority of spam comes from members who have less than 10 or 20 posts, therefore you were probably eyed a bit too closely. And with 60,000+ members, we do have to try to keep things clean, so please bear with us.

If you have a post that you think is unfairly spammed, please let someone know, just like you did in this thread. Mods and Admins will look at it and make a decision. We are always open to discussion. Remember, it's not personal, and sometimes we make mistakes, but we are always willing to discuss problems and clarify situations.

So, welcome aboard. Hope to see you around the forums.

Kris

5. Posted by pfeiffer (Full Member 211 posts) 10y

Quoting beerman

And with 60,000+ members, we do have to try to keep things clean, so please bear with us.

Hi Kris,

This is a leeetle off-topic from the thread, but since it is more or less wrapped up anyway... your comment reminds me of a report that just came out from Mr. Usability-Testing himself, Jakob Nielson. In brief:

"In most online systems, 90% of users are lurkers who never contribute, 9% of users contribute a little, and 1% of users account for almost all the action."

This certainly is corroborated by my own experiences running online forum systems. That would mean roughly 6,000 more or less active members here and perhaps 600 regular participants. Given that many systems (perhaps also TP) are very, very slow about pruning dormant accounts, the real numbers could be somewhat less.

Article is here:
http://www.useit.com/alertbox/participation_inequality.html

-Kevin
--
Kevin Pfeiffer

6. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 10y

Quoting pfeiffer

Given that many systems (perhaps also TP) are very, very slow about pruning dormant accounts, the real numbers could be somewhat less.

Article is here:
http://www.useit.com/alertbox/participation_inequality.html

-Kevin
--
Kevin Pfeiffer

I'm sure the actual number of true users is less. But, when it comes to "pruning" dormant accounts - there is a bit of gray area. Because TP is a travel-related website, many of the members actually travel regularly and for long periods of time - especially those on RTW trips. It would be hard to set a criteria as to when a member is no longer truly active. I have seen members I met when I joined disappear for for over a year, then resurface and begin posting again. Granted, there are members out there who were really spammers, posted once and never returned after their threads were deleted. But it would seem to be an arduous task to follow up on 60,000 members to see who is still active and who is not. I'd hate to decide someone was dormant, delete them, then have them return and find they no longer exist on TP.

Just a thought...

7. Posted by pfeiffer (Full Member 211 posts) 10y

Quoting Isadora

It would be hard to set a criteria as to when a member is no longer truly active. I have seen members I met when I joined disappear for for over a year, then resurface and begin posting again.

Hi Isadora,

I wouldn't think a year is a long time, either. Perhaps after two or more years. I think I used anywhere from 12 to 18 months at the university where I briefly worked. But even then I seem to recall one or two "what happened to my account" queries, including someone in upper-level administration (oops).

-Kevin
--
Kevin Pfeiffer

8. Posted by Peter (Admin 5807 posts) 10y

Quoting plesbit

Well I was really pleased to find this forum and start interacting with fellow travellers but it's been about the worst welcome to a forum I've had!

Hey plesbit, I'm sorry you had a hard welcome. As pointed out by the other posts, we do allow 'respected members' and 'travel gurus' to flag posts for review if they think the are in violation of the rules. I removed the flag after reviewing, because it was a genuine response imo.

In defence of the system; of the flags that are made, I only ever need to clear about 1%. So 99% of posts flagged as spam, do in fact need to be edited/deleted. Yours was the one in a hundred kind of flag which needed to be cleared ;) It's the downside to the upside, which is that the participants on these forums are about the least self-serving you will find on the internet!

And finally, welcome to the site. I hope you can let this incident slide and join in the community. :)

9. Posted by plesbit (Budding Member 14 posts) 10y

Hi Peter,

Yeah, it's all fine now.

About a year ago I decided to start a travel forum myself, though my timing was slightly off because I suddenly got made redundant and thereafter didn't have the time or resources to put any effort or promotion into it. Eventually the spamming bots got hold of it, took it over and quickly ruined it - I could get 50-60 spam messages between going to bed and getting up so I had to bin the whole idea. The very mention of spammers makes my blood pressure rise rapidly which was probably why I didn't take kindly to be reported as one!

I set up my forums to help people who love to do what I love to do and when I finally made the decision to shut them I wanted to find somewhere else where I could continue to help people and I found this place. So when my second post was blanked out and declared spam it touched on a nerve. Apologies if I over reacted. I think the thing which annoyed me most was that, I think, whoever reported it probably had not even read it properly or followed the link as it should have been obvious it was genuinely intended to help.

I do sympathise with the spam problem though - as you can probably imagine, I know what's like.

Anyway, 'nuff said, I'm off to look for some travellers to help!

10. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 10y

Quoting pfeiffer

"In most online systems, 90% of users are lurkers who never contribute, 9% of users contribute a little, and 1% of users account for almost all the action."

Interesting quote! The only thing I'd like to add is that there is a large portion of the members that joined for reasons other than the forum (tons of members use only the blogs/photography sections for example). Another example; if you'd like to reunite with an old travel friend and posted a lost friend request 3 years ago, you'd be pretty spiffed to see your account deleted and with it the request, when it's meant to be online and accessible for years and years to come (one of the main ways that users are reunited is by the requests being found quite some time later by others while browsing etc.)!

Sam
ps. it's roughly 75000 members now :)