NEWCOMERS: Social etiquette...

Welcome to the snake pit!

Good luck, and get ready with thick skin. Some responses may be harsh, thoughtless or completely wrong.

Youwill find allies & help in here but may have to be patient.

>>Try this <<

Just reading the How to use this Forum sticky and following those guidelines goes a long, long way towards getting useful help... Show that you have done own homework and you have a good chance of receiving lots of serious answers and triggering a lively discussion of your project.

Being a newbe in the beginning I faced a hole new world having my first UNO in my hand.
Maybe the introductionary advices could be more highlighted in order to catch newbies?
Issuing the first new posts one could be prompted/directed to/shown the “How to use Forum”?

lastchancename:
Welcome to the snake pit!

>>Try this <<

This looks very like DOUBLE POSTING by someone who knows better ? ?

…R

No offence taken!
The original of that post was in a specific (misplaced) newbie’s welcome thread... I liked the sentiment of that message to grab newcomers attention so copy & tweaked into a headline topic!

Someone must have liked it - they made it a sticky!

We can be a-holes, but also helpful if the OPs make some effort to think about what they want and provide meaningful info to address their requirements.

(I could have just re-pasted my signature footer...!)

I definitely lack social etiquette and I think mostly because English is not my first language and I see much more examples of people been harsh or thoughtless and I ended up writing like them. I know I am wrong and I am trying to learn how to write in a polite way. But I think people in this forum, willing to help newcomers, has a thin skin for that. Which is fair as we are the one asking for answers, I am just realizing this forum is much harder to get allies then others that I participate in.

That’s a reasonable observation, and if you happen to sit in on a professional full-time software team of 4 or more programmers - you’ll see the same social dynamics at work.

Maybe it’s just that part of the brain works in a particular way.
...and the grumpy, antisocial members are (often) the longest serving, oddly innovative ! They get on better with machines better than they get on with people !

I would offer that reading what an X/Y PROBLEM is would go along way. Many noobs rule out things that would be the simple fix.

Working in software development for well over 30 years, I can attest to the fact that programmers are difficult to interact with at times, our brains are wired different that non-programmers.

When dealing with Hobby programmers, it can be flustrating as simple things that we know, can be complex or difficult for beginers to comprehend. Stuff we do daily without thinking is complex for new developers to grasp and understand.

It is also easy to tell who is trying and who is just expecting us to fix thier problem. I tend to be a little gruff with people I suspect as being lazy.

What I will say, is sometimes some of the comments from some of the more senior people on this forum can drive new developers away. I know I have been trying to be a bit more patent and less snippity, however it is hard when the OP refuses to answer questions or simply vanishes without followup.

I just think that we need to try harder in not insulting or belittling people who seek help. Some of these people are young and not eperianced. I just hate to see people turned off because of some of the caustic comments.

It also would be helpful if before a person is allowed to post, they are required to read a few of the important stickies. I am sure with some modifications to thie forum this could be achived. Far to many times, we spend getting people to post code and or wiring diagrams. I feel this is important as a persons first instict for getting help is to simply post, not scan many topics to insure they comply with the rules.

If we want them to follow the rules, we should do something to make sure they can read the rules.

bernabap:
But I think people in this forum, willing to help newcomers, has a thin skin for that. Which is fair as we are the one asking for answers, I am just realizing this forum is much harder to get allies then others that I participate in.

Romonaga:
I just think that we need to try harder in not insulting or belittling people who seek help. Some of these people are young and not eperianced. I just hate to see people turned off because of some of the caustic comments.

I certainly don't claim to be perfect and I am aware that there are differences in the quality of the "bedside manner" of different contributors but I find it very hard to accept this sort of generalised "accusation". If people have a complaint about someone's behaviour (including mine) then I would like to see a specific link to it. That is the only way to understand the context of the interaction between people, and the only way in which offenders might be persuaded to change.

My sense of the Forum is that anyone who presents a genuine problem and who wants to get a solution will get a great deal of help.

I don't think the social niceties are any different here from in a real face-to-face group meeting. When a newcomer joins a group s/he takes time to get a sense of how the group works and does not expect the group to change its behaviour to match the newcomer's preferred style.

...R

U+004E
U+004F

I have some pet peeves... laziness, doesn't research so leaves it up to us, argumentative, withholding information... oh just never mind I'm a grump too... and folks that get help but don't hit karma

We don't get paid for this... be nice, listen, be willing to research your google works and read datasheets, be patient it takes us time especially if you didn't provide enough information. We are not customer service for Arduino... it's our hobby we try to help... don't be jerks.

If you can live with that these guys excluding me are very knowledgeable...

@Romonaga
You have a good point in Your message. I have experienced some of what You write myself. To be onest, I sadfully sometimes answer in a negative way and afterwards regret my writing. Why did I answer that way? The sometimes correting, finger snapping, answers I got is one sad influece.
Teaching "the World" how to do is a never ending mission.

One other side of the matter is the huge span of knowledge, willingless to work, among questioners. Someone being lazy…. Gigs and collaboration… What about dyslectic persons? They have difficulties Reading so Google just overloads them but they manage do a great job having the support the way THEY need.

Some questioners have a LEGO Brick level of knowledge about, sometimes, both programming and electric/electronic matters, but a confidence of taking the moon down.It's frustrating for many helping members. Some do have patience enough to give the lession needed, from 1:st class in school. I don't Always have it and, of course, scilled members can't Always have it.

@Robin2
Pointing out any member, accusing him/here of being rude, that feels hard, bad... Most of them have later given good help. My question being poor, their temper at the time... I can't tell.
In general I feel You are one of the "kind", less temepred, rather patient, answering members. I read a lot more topics answered by You than just the answers I get.

@wolframore
Read above. There are quite sharp people having some kind of disability that can do really good things but they need another approach then "normal" people. Just pure lazyness..... I underatand You. Gigs and Col....

Be willing to listen.... Sometimes the entire group of "knowing members" answer and the questioner is drowning in suggestions. Why does that happend? Personally I try to awoid adding the fifth, sixth answer....

Helping a newbie, helping a more experienced, gives me satisfaction when the problem is solved. Snapping small guys on their fingers gives me bad feelings afterwards. Choosing the questions I can answer in a positive way, leaving the rest, is what I try, but sometimes fail in.

1 Like

Interesting thread.
Another perspective - giving comprehensive, elegant answers are often just an attempt to short-circuit the growth of bad advice or development habits.

Q: Is it better to ignore quality at the support of convenience? Try a few like-named libraries that are completely incompatible!

@lastchancename
You have a good point in Yor reply.
How to slow down, land, a high flying dreamer in a gentle manner? Most of us are technicians I would say, not phycologists.

I refuse to spoon feed. I think you get more out of it if you help folks figure it out. You can lead a horse to water but can’t make em drink. Give them the answer and it solves it that time but what do they learn?

Agree:
Spoon feeding small snippets or examples to demonstrate a method is fine, but I’d rarely give a whole solution, because they get ‘something for nothing’ which sets a bad precedent for their future efforts and other onlookers.

If an OP doesn’t know how to incorporate a snippet or example, they need to go back to smaller projects and simpler questions.

When a beginner is being a waste of time while expecting us to pour hours into explanations quite often laid out cleanly and fully on the Arduino main site or elsewhere on the web yet "can't learn that way" or simply ignores the links....

Just how much etiquette does that time-wasting jerk deserve?

There are other beginners who can benefit from the lost time so they lose too. Polite can go take a seat then, smiling ripoffs still rip everyone off.

wolframore:
I refuse to spoon feed. I think you get more out of it if you help folks figure it out.

Agreed.

I often ask the OP a question (such as "what is X" or "what do you mean by Y") deliberately to get the OP to think about how s/he has presented the problem.

Unfortunately it is often the case that some other knowledgeable and well-meaning person answers the question before the OP gets the chance.

...R

Robin2:
Unfortunately it is often the case that some other knowledgeable and well-meaning person answers the question before the OP gets the chance.

Amen to that. :grinning:

One thing I often toss into replies-
Is asking if the OP can find a local buddy who can look over their shoulder for a few hours.

Arduino (and most other platforms) aren’t software only, and as such, newbies need to be taught that power, timing and compatibility are the structures you develop software on top of.