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Discussion Starter #1
We all get tired of hearing the same questions again and again... :mad:

Maybe we could put up a FAQ sticky as the very first topic in some of the sections. It should at the minimum contain a link to the appropriate FAQ sections on celicasupra.com and any other members' websites that give related info. Admins (or others) could add stuff to that sticky thread, giving answers to a lot of the most frequently asked questions in that section. Perhaps some knowledgeable, long-time members would each be willing to do a write-up for one section, so the burden is spread out over several people.

Also, maybe all newly registered people should get an introductory email sent to them which VERY STRONGLY encourages them to read the cs.com main FAQ before posting questions. (I'm sure a lot of newbies on the forum don't even know that big FAQ is there.) It should also point out the fact that there is a Search button, and give brief instructions on how to use it. :roll:

What do you all think?
 

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Dean,

I think this is a very GOOD idea. In fact, I'm going to make this post you've made an announcement because I'd like some feedback on what you've said from everyone. The two most useful sections on this website (in addition to all the things we've discussed on the forum) are the following:

1) The website FAQ -- http://www.celicasupra.com/faq.htm

2) Forum Search -- http://www.celicasupra.com/phpBB2/search.php

The FAQ on the main website needs some updating. If any of you would be willing to put together what you feel are some of the more repetitious questions, that would be great. They could then be added into the various sections in the FAQ (by Mr. Malloy perhaps?)

Once the FAQ is up to date, we can point new users toward it when they ask common questions like the above. I just don't have the time to mess with it, otherwise I'd tackle it myself.

In each section of the forum, an announcement post could be made, with links pointing toward the site FAQ and the search section. As simple as it is to use search, I really don't see the point in one of us writing up directions though. I mean, in the search window the following info is listed:

Search for Keywords:
You can use AND to define words which must be in the results, OR to define words which may be in the result and NOT to define words which should not be in the result. Use * as a wildcard for partial matches


Search for Author:
Use * as a wildcard for partial matches


The search options on that screen allow you to search or limit your search parameters in various ways. I think what's happening is that users aren't searching specific enough, or perhaps they're searching a single keyword, getting TOO MANY results and giving up after only 1 or 2 attempts.

Just like using Google or Yahoo, you may have to try a couple different ways (keyword phrases) before you get what you're actually looking for. The forum search function works very much the same way.
 

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AMEN.....Dean,

Excellent suggestion. I completely agree that as new members join, there should be an email sent to each explaining how the forum works and rules of common courtsey.

Stephen, I think you are on the right track and I will of course be willing to help with FAQ writeups where ever I can.

Maybe the search and FAQ buttons could be 1/4 screen size so they can't be missed.

We want to encourage new members but the same 15 posts over and over on a daily basis as new members join gets quite tiresome.

Leslie
 

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excellent ideas, but i have one more.

you know how some sites (no names :p) have a disclaimer, and you MUST accept before it will let you enter.
i remember one, basically the guy disavowed himself of any responsiblity for "anything that has happened to you, might happen to you, or will happen to you, whether or not you view any material on this website"

i thought that one was kinda cool, if only i could find it to ask permission to borrow the wording, lol.

but what i was thinking is making an intro page for new users, where they sign up for the forums, and theyre sent a link to this page, where they are only logged in if they read the announcement about the FAQ and the search function, and press the "yes, i will use this, or my car is forfeit" button.

just my 2 cents, and ill help with a write up if i can, but im afraid, compared to many users on the board, i know very little :)
 

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The only problem with the read the rights before you sign on is that you can't actually make them read it...they just scroll to the end and click yes, no one actually reads those things......so maybe the email would work better......or better yet.....give em a quiz of the rules....lol jk...great ideas guys.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
OK, we agree that there are some good ideas here to help reduce Newbie repeat questions.

Now what?

1. What do we do next?
2. Who does it?

I think that the email to new subscribers has to come from the forums owner or administrator.

The FAQ stickies (or announcements) at the beginning of each section could be written up by members.
I'll commit to finally finishing up the FAQ on the heating and A/C system that I've been working on for a long time.

Any other volunteers?
 

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I agree completely Dean...

We're working on a few solutions. I have talked to Mike and to Chris about this before, and the forum can be modified so that initial email that goes out to new members (the confirmation email) could contain some general rules and where to find info, how to use the FAQ and how to use search.

This is in the works. Any input you have, or anyone for that matter...please speak up. We really need to get this fixed before it continues to be a bother for the rest of us who have been here a while.
 

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This is an inherent problem when people ask for information.

Web forums, company forums, etc all experience this. It's chronic.

Same problem we had on the mailing list.

It is much easier to type a question and hope for a response
than doing a simple search.

As I've developed software for all of my career, I'm still amazed
with all the help and searching capabilities with software these days,
that some one can not even press the F1 key to find an answer. :roll: :lol:

That said, an e-mail to new users is nice, but they may not read it,
and most importantly, will almost immediately forget it.

One needs to provide an obvious "click here for diagnosing MK2 problems", "Top Mods", etc. And it needs to be simple to find answers
with pre-loaded questions (common problems).

There needs to be *contributors* to this accelerated FAQ design.

And one of those "did you find this useful" buttons, to help refine
the answers.

This will help alleviate the repetitive noise questions.

I'm not looking down on these questions, but valuable new content/contributions gets lost.
 

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Maybe I'm wrong, but I thought there was a disclaimer somewhere at some time in my history that actually kinda made you read it. Like this one would actually sit and hang for 30 seconds to a minute before it would let you hit continue. Also, would it be possible to make 2 options to agree, instead of 1 right at the end? For example, in the middle of the disclaimer, you ask, 'do you understand so far' and then they have to hit yes, and continue reading. Now, as I think of it, it may discourage people to join. Just the reading factor. I like the ideas of the FAQ recommending email and whatnot, but I am one of those who reads when I feel like reading or need to know something. Not that I'd just randomly sit and read a giant FAQ. Not that I'm discrediting that, as it is a good idea, but with people like me in the world, you'll still get stupid repeat questions from time to time. If I come across one of those, I'll try to dig up an old discussion and just put a link in my response. Ok, enough of me for now...
 

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When I joined this forum, it was right around the time that I was planning to put a 6M in my sup. To me, as a newb at the time, reading the FAQ's and old posts seemed to be a daunting task. How would I know what's relevant? Like Jim said, I felt like I needed to get replies from folks responding to my specific questions, so I posted a new topic under Engine as 6M swap:

http://www.celicasupra.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=2733

The replies I got helped/encouraged me a lot. It was analagous to talking to a real person vs. automated voice system. Today, thanks in part to this forum, I have a 6M in my sup. 8) I now read new posts as well as search for old ones. Whether or not these are the types of repetitive posts being discussed I am not sure. Hopefullythis provides some insight into the mind of a newb. Also, like Dean suggested, maybe a FAQ section titled "Considering a blankity blank swap?" for 6M, 5MGTE etc... would do the trick. Hope this helps!!
 
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