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Controlling older threads

  1. Nov 29, 2014 #1

    jim mcnamara

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    Staff: Mentor

    I'm a moderator on another site, and we close older threads. We close after 30 days. It prevents "me too" posts and thread hijacks by new posters with a very similar problem - when the answer could have been found with a simple forum search. It also cuts off pointless discussion threads.

    Anyway, what is the possibility for doing something like this on PF? I realize some of the long lived threads go on just fine. The Moderators could easily set a no-close flag (vBulletin supports that; this may be a modification the forums owner made on the above mentioned forums) on those threads since there aren't that many.

    There are many more of these threads than the truly viable long-time threads:
    This one dithered on from March into mostly nonsense and Nugatory finally closed it.
    https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/can-we-blow-up-a-tornado.692975/page-2

    This kind of what-if thread is the most likely to attract supposition. And I thought it was under control - but after reading the entire thing, that did not seem to be the case. It waffled on for months. One advisor kind of gave up and started making pretty good jokes. Simon, thank you for the humor.

    I am contemplating going "mean" and start asking to close these things. Regardless. I had assumed that if another advisor or mod had posted in a thread it was under some sort control. Since I am competent to post in a very few sub-forums my impact is truly minimal.

    Maybe grumpy comes with old age....
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 29, 2014 #2
    Currently I run a query a few times a year that close threads that haven't had a response in a year. I'm likely due to run it again. The time is up for debate, but I do think 30 days is a bit low.
     
  4. Nov 29, 2014 #3

    DataGG

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    Gold Member

    I agree that 30 days is extremely low...

    I think threads should be merged more often... There are several threads (For example, the IQ ones, or the "best physicist", etc) that could be merged into 1 bigger thread. Just dump everything from a particular subject into 1 mega-thread.
     
  5. Nov 29, 2014 #4

    phinds

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    I agree that we get a lot of similar threads (VERY similar threads sometimes) but I don't think a simple "dump it all into one thread" would give a good result and *I* certainly wouldn't ask the mods to spend the time necessary to do an intelligent merger.
     
  6. Nov 30, 2014 #5

    Vanadium 50

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    Jim, I am still having trouble understanding exactly what the problem is. It sounds like the thread itself was problematic and should have been closed while it was still active, and that's the problem - not that the automatic closings run with 365 days and not 30. (Or 90, or 180 or some other number) If so, probably the best thing to do is to report the thread.
     
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