Support » Everything else WordPress » You know what’s great about this forum?

  • It forces you to find answers for yourself because people rarely have ever answered any of my questions. A great book I found to help is Smashing Magazine’s Beyond the Blog – it’s all about WordPress.

Viewing 13 replies - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • Well, sadly it is mostly luck at the mo if someone sees your question. But thing is, alot of questions on here you can actually do a search for and it has been answered.

    I never heard of that blog, might be worth a look to see if it is in the library.

    A good handful of the threads you’ve started ask about specific themes or plugins, if i don’t have either of them, why would i reply?.. ( would you like me to guess about the problem in the hope it helps? )

    RE: Other threads.
    What’s posted could be duplication of something asked already (i personally dislike repeating myself simply because someone couldn’t spend all 10 seconds on the search/google – though i still myself answering the same question numerous times *sigh*), or it could be something beyond which i know, in which case i’d have nothing to offer.. ( again i could offer a guess, but it may be totally worthless ). Bear in mind if i were to reply to 30 threads with guesses about problems i’d then look unhelpful if i fail to follow up with additional replies to those threads (so do i want to be making guesses about everyone’s issues? .. no not really)

    What would you have me do in such a case, go and learn about what is asked(that could take minutes or hours depending on what it is), simply so i can attend to a need for an answer? (Should i load up a theme or plugin mentioned just to help? if so, should i not then do it for every support request? – that would require lots of my personal time).

    I ask in good faith, because i am genuinely curious as to what your expectations are when it comes to getting support on these forums. No one here is obligated to help, as each volunteer (like myself) is just another blogger like you, we’re no one special, just another person using WordPress..

    Do you yourself offer your time to help others on this forum? If not, then you should understand already … you have the same obligation to support others here as we do (none)… if help is given, it’s out of choice, not obligation …

    Well my questions,, actually are related to functions that I understand on a superficial level are WP generic…like the loop and how it functions. Which was one of my questions I believe. You’re telling me no one knows? I find that hard to believe. And yeah, I get no one is obligated to answer and in fact I have figured out a number of things that i have offered answers to through PM and also working with people in real time on their WP Blogs.

    I am also very familiar with the search function. I always do a thorough search of the topic before troubling to ask a question. I’m not an idiot. Obviously, that is what you should do it’s called self advocacy.

    Strange this is the most response I have ever had from a post.

    P.S. the Smashing Magazine book is 48 at Barnes and Noble. It’s well worth it and no I don’t work for them. 😉

    Some popular additional resources from the Home page.



    Forum Janitor

    Strange this is the most response I have ever had from a post.

    Not really. Everyone has their 2p worth to put in into a meta-discussion, and not everyone can answer every question.

    It’s not a perfect forum, but lots of people do get helped. Unfortunately there are only so many helpers and a lot of questions.

    Maria i think that’s just the way it goes sometimes, i’ve posted threads myself that go unanswered ..

    There’s lots of reasons that people / a person, may not answer a thread, and we’d only be speculating on the reasoning..

    You’re telling me no one knows? I find that hard to believe.

    It’s not necessarily always a question of ..
    “Do i know the answer”
    … but more ..
    “How long will it take to break it down and explain the answer” (something i’m not brilliant at myself)

    We can all only put in so much time to the forum, and personally (i can’t speak for everyone), i’d rather do 10 simple / quick replies, then 2 or 3 in-depth replies..

    That’s not to say i only do brief replies, but i’ve answered many threads now, and it can become a bit cumbersome at times …because like other users i’m wanting to learn, but i don’t learn by helping people with minor customizations and such (it’s easy, but i don’t learn when it’s easy), so sometimes i may purposely just join in on the threads that offer a challenge (or something insightful), and ignore the others.. simply because like other users, i want some satisfaction to.. 🙂

    Of course, tomorrow i may not apply any of what i said above to my rationale in helping other users, but then after all, like i said before, there’s no obligation… (so i can be really helpful one day, and only do the odd reply the next).

    Having previously worked in a tech support position, i can most definately say, i would rather be supporting an open source project over working for a company offering support to customers. There are times when offering support here feels just like being in that office, but at least offering support here i can walk away(shut the browser, whatever) if i’ve had enough..

    I think all to often what happens, is that a user comes here to post a support request expecting to receive the same level of support they’d receive with a monetized product, when quite frankly i think it’s totally different. To receive help here (in my mind), it is the job of the poster to form a question/thread in a manner that makes users want to get involved or feel invited to offer an opinion..

    I’m not suggesting there was a problem with your threads Maria, but that perhaps the issue(if there was an issue) was in your expectations of what will happen when a support request(thread) is submitted here on the forum, and i don’t mean that as a criticism… just something to consider..

    Looking over your threads again, going from latest to oldest, the first three i found without reply are theme or plugin specific (other then the resolved one, which i don’t think i could offer input on anyway), but since you’ve got my attention, then whilst i’m here, is there anything you think i could help you with?

    @ mariacharmer:

    I’m sorry that you have felt ignored on the support forums and I know it can be frustrating (I myself even as a helper sort of person on the forum have posted questions in the past that had no answers before), but I would like to say that I truly believe that nobody is purposely trying to ignore you.

    I have looked at your posting history and where it is true you have several unanswered threads, you also have several threads that have generated responses as well.

    What t31os and mrmist have said is very true. In particular, I would like to further add on to what t31os said about theme-specific questions and what mrmist said about the users-to-help people ratio.

    When it comes to doing support questions relating to ‘how does this function’ or ‘how does this feature’, I have personally found that the Theme in question can really matter when it comes to offering a sensible response instead of a ‘grab a potential catch-all solution and hope it works’ response.

    The reason for this is because the various functionalities that get get coded into each different theme and each different plugin more than likely involve PHP coding that isn’t easily seen by the naked eye like CSS and XHTML is.

    For example, on this thread that you posted, an answer to your question (how do you integrate a plugin into a specific theme in a specific way) would involve understanding how the theme itself works and how the plugin interacts with the theme.

    To answer your question properly would involve understanding how the NextGen plugin works in the first place and how it manifests itself natively in a theme without any fiddling and it would also involve understanding the scripting involved with the Photocrati theme in question which gives it the slideshow capability you mentioned in your post.

    Like t31os, I would also prefer to not say anything at all in such a situation because the answer I would give would not answer your question and I would rather someone be able to intelligently (and without guessing and making you screw up!) offer you a solution rather than clog your thread up with useless posts.

    An empty thread, in my opinion, attracts more potential helpers than a thread with a bunch of ‘Oh I’m sorry I can’t help you, but maybe someone else can!’ posts.

    The reason I say that is because on a whole, the majority of us more regular forum helpers tend to respect each other’s posts and try not to overlap and repeat information where possible. A thread with a lot of posts = someone already answered. A thread with no posts = nobody answered yet so I’ll go look.

    To answer your other statement about not being able to believe that nobody can answer your questions:

    Yes, there might be a few of us here who have experience working with specific themes, but like I tried to break down in my earlier explanation, being able to provide a solution regarding specific themes more often than not requires understanding of that theme itself due to the ‘additional’ functional scripting involved that makes that theme unique to other themes.

    This isn’t to say that a generic ‘maybe this potential catch-all’ solution won’t work; it might. But unless we have specifically tested such a thing on such a theme utilizing the same exact plugin, we honestly can’t know for sure.

    And then what if the solution provided offered an even worse outcome and broke the theme?

    It’s an exaggeration, but I believe that a lot of us believe that it is better to be safe than sorry. Nobody wants to be the one to break a theme because they suggested something that really didn’t work.

    And really, in my very honest opinion, when it comes to very theme-specific questions, your best bet (almost always!) is to consult with the theme author(s) and THEIR support group themselves.

    They will know the theme and they will have, more than likely, experimented with a lot of different plugins as well and the provided solutions, therefore, are much less likely to be ‘guessed out of thin air’.

    This isn’t to say that here is a bad place to ask such questions – not at all! But when it comes to very theme-specific functionality working with some other functionality, the theme author -should- always know best simply because they understand the functionality of their theme in a way that we – people who never used the theme before – don’t.

    This same principle applies to plugin-related questions/problems, too.

    Someone who has never used XYZ plugin before might not have the same erroring problem you have had (I read a post where you said a button disappeared due to a plugin, for example) and so when a question is asked about an error that is generated from a specific plugin, it might take someone who has experienced the same error in the same way to answer your question.

    For example, I recently helped a gentleman with a plugin-related issue (his widgets couldn’t be moved on his sidebar) and I was using anecdotal evidence that I had heard from other WP-colleagues and Google to try and help him troubleshoot! I never had the problem myself before at all, and if I hadn’t heard the stories I had and thought to Google to do some research, I might never have been able to help him.

    Again, I’m sorry other support questions not related to your theme-specific questions didn’t get answered, but mrmist is right.

    We DO try and help, but there are slow days and there are fast days and there are days where the forum is quiet and there are days where the forum is really busy.

    We also DON’T try and single out users to not help (unless said users are simply spamming or trying to scam like some people have).

    It is simply a matter of fact that: The more specific a question is – and this applies to everyone, including us, because even helpers need help! – the more time might be needed to find a person with a solution.

    And yes, searching around the forums might show that the question might have been asked before and it might have been answered before…

    But quite possibly answered by someone else who wasn’t/isn’t online at the time of your posting.

    Or it might be a related-but-not question – same solution to the same problem that presents itself differently or has been worded differently to make the same problem look different to people who are reading the help request.

    There are a lot of reasons ‘help is lacking’ around here and it really all boils down to the ratio of helpers to support topics like what mrmist said.

    Some of us are more specialized, but for myself for example, I specialize in CSS and XHTML and I can help troubleshoot installation and basic WP functionality issues. I’m at a loss with troubleshooting PHP (much less non WP-specific PHP functions) unless I have specifically worked with the code.

    If I could have helped you when I encountered your help topics, I would have and I believe that others would have, too.

    I appreciate everyone’s comments, especially the lengthy ones. Takes a lot of time to go that in depth on a response. For the record, when I initiated this topic I was on a euphoric high because I managed (with the help of Smashing WordPress and prior experience) to figure out some things about a theme I was using and how it used the The Loop. I was being ironic and humorous. Of course, you can’t really tell through the writing.

    But at least we have established the fact that, yes, questions posed are rarely answered but that is o.k. because if you’re dedicated enough you can find an answer.


    Oh dear Maria you did open a can of worms, lol. I have posted a few questions on this forum, being a newby, but unfortunately have had no replies. Obviously the moderators etc are not proficient in wordpress otherwise they would be able to help a simpleton like me. I too use the search because I know that is my best option to finding an answer and in most cases I have come across a previous thread.

    Thats not to say that I do not appreciate any help that might come my way in the future, I know this is a free forum and we shouldnt expect too much. Thanks to all the gals and guys that built this wonderful software.

    Good luck maria in your wordpress sites.


    Obviously the moderators etc are not proficient in wordpress otherwise they would be able to help a simpleton like me.

    Well, I’ll give you one thing. No one can ever accuse you of basing your statements on empirical evidence. It seems to me that I and others, ( including two moderators… one of whos’ efforts you chose to completely ignore in your very first post and question ) have attempted to assist you quite diligently in your – what is it now – 6 total days of membership?

    But I respect your opinion, just the same.

    Sorry. I just have to. I know I’m a moron, but…

    I have posted a few questions on this forum, being a newby, but unfortunately have had no replies.

    (Spoken in the voice of “Lil Jon”…)

    “What? WHAT!? Okay…”

    Peace. 🙂

    I think you will find Clayton that I did reply to you, saying thank you for all your help, maybe you didnt read it?. The other posts have still had NO REPLIES! I just wont bother to ask in the future.

    Thanks again for your help in the past.



    Forum Janitor

    A quick check through your threads suggests that most of them have had replies, and I think the reasons why others may not have had replies have beeen addressed here already.

    For the record, there is no requirement for forum moderators to be WordPress experts. Help can come from any source, not necessarily mods.

    And with that I think this thread has ran its course.

Viewing 13 replies - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
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