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Do not wish courtesy "bump"

  1. Jun 5, 2015 #1
    My thread was courtesy bumped and I feel that's immature, tacky, and unprofessional-looking. Now, I really hate complaining especially since I've had problems in the forum and would really rather just be a ghost, follow the rules and not bother anyone since PF is so beneficial to me and so many others.

    I propose we do away with courtesy bumps and allow the members to accept responsibility for their actions: if you make a thread that no one answers, then don't force anyone to say something or make them feel sorry for you and feel obligated to say something. I'm perfectly fine with no one answering my thread: at some point in life, if you study long enough, there will come a point that you work on something that no one on the entire planet will be able to help you with or wants to help you with, and you will just have to go by yourself.

    And if it's courtesy bumped then others looking at the listing of threads will see it's not "unanswered" and feel the question is resolved and thus be less likely to even read it.

    Let me offer a positive suggestion: how about we put a little radio-button in a user's profile to enable/disable courtesy bumping so at least members can be given a choice for this option.

    Last edited: Jun 5, 2015
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 5, 2015 #2


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    Gold Member

    Thanks for the post! This is an automated courtesy bump. Sorry you aren't generating responses at the moment. Do you have any further information, come to any new conclusions or is it possible to reword the post?
  4. Jun 5, 2015 #3


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    Gold Member

    But seriously: I like that the courtesy bump keeps the list of unanswered threads shorter and more dynamic.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2015
  5. Jun 5, 2015 #4


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    Staff: Mentor

    We've discussed this internally several times. You're right that the courtesy bump kicks a thread off the unanswered list, and that's pretty clearly not a feature (is it a bug or a disfeature? You decide :smile:). However, we also don't want the unanswered list to grow without bound, so there's going to be some arbitrary cutoff after which threads are removed from the unanswered list in any case.

    On the other hand, we've found that the courtesy bump actually provokes people to respond - people who were hanging around expecting someone else to respond realize that it's time to speak up themselves. So there's a balance here: If the thread has languished unanaswered for long enough, the chances of getting an answer as a result of the bump become greater than the chances of attracting an answer as it moves down on the time-sorted list of unanswered threads.
  6. Jun 5, 2015 #5
    Is it the concept or the wording? or both?

    The point is not to force anyone to answer a thread. The problem with forum communities is there is only a certain percentage of threads a users will see. The more active the community, the less a member will see. This is a problem structurally. To help give every thread a chance to be properly seen we give it a bump. That way it gives more chance a member who could and wants to reply, will. It's not a pity play, it's simply a viability device.

    That is a downside yes, however it's then listed as new content for everyone. No one looks at page 5 of unanswered threads.

    Thanks for your feedback!
  7. Jun 5, 2015 #6
    Ok Nugatory, that's mildly acceptable to me. However I would rather not experience the anti-climax of waking up to a beautiful morning, dancing around happy to be alive, booting up my machine, checking my email and seeing, "oh, someone answered my post!" only to be left unfulfilled by a "courtesy post".
  8. Jun 5, 2015 #7
    Not the wording. I don't wish to be rude or disrespectful but I feel it's childish: people saw it in the reasonable amount of time it stayed on the top of the forum, and chose not to reply. Just be a man and accept it and move on. Now, I certainly won't complain again if it happens again. I've said my concerns and I don't want to rub a wound. I just don't feel we should be babying people that way. That's all.
  9. Jun 5, 2015 #8
    We don't make these assumptions. We believe every thread has the right to some response. Someone took the time to register and post a message. They deserve some recognition. If you call that babying, so be it. The auto bump gives them a second chance for members who were on the fence about replying or just didn't see it. I think you are mistaken just how many members see any given thread. We have gotten a lot of positive feedback in the past. I can understand your view though and we work hard to make the system as productive as possible.

    How would you have felt if no one replied to this thread? Like your voice was not heard? Likely and that would be a normal response.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2015
  10. Jun 5, 2015 #9
    Ok Greg. I stand down. And I won't bring it up again. Got a lot of programming to do anyway.
    Thanks guys for replying to my concerns.

  11. Jun 5, 2015 #10
    No need to "stand down". I appreciate your feedback and am always looking for ways to improve. If you can think of anything that would make the bump system even a bit better, let me know.
  12. Jun 5, 2015 #11


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    2017 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    There are threads where users might be able to contribute a bit, but don't reply because they expect others to be able to explain it better. If the thread comes up again few days later (also via the watched threads), they see that even an incomplete reply might help (better than nothing).
  13. Jun 5, 2015 #12


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    Gold Member

    I too think that the courtesy bump is a very useful feature, but how about this suggestion in the opening post ?
    Or some option on each thread which removes the bump when ticked off ? I saw some insights' comment threads getting a courtesy bump and I think that might not be very appropriate.
  14. Jun 5, 2015 #13


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    Staff: Mentor

    An automated bump is useful for new members, especially, many of whom may be unaware of these finer details of forum operation. Perhaps the automated bump could be reserved for posts by members having fewer than, say, 250 posts, leaving experienced members to take care of it themselves?

    It sometimes is true that a member would choose to allow a thread to be not bumped, one reason being that responses coming after a deadline has passed will be of no help to him or anyone (meaning respondants should invest their time helping in other threads because it will be wasted effort here). It does come across as somewhat rude and demanding when the opening post in any thread says, even when more diplomatically worded, "If you can't reply within 2 days, don't bother."
  15. Jun 6, 2015 #14

    I made a mistake and I regret it: I did not mean in my first post "I'm perfectly fine if no one answers my post". I'm not. I would much rather someone answer it and I'm disappointed if no one does. Rather, what I should have said is, "I accept it if no one answers it, and I just move on".

    Ok thanks for replying guys,
  16. Jun 6, 2015 #15
    I really like this culture here at physics forums.
    Whenever you posit a clear question there's a big chance of getting a response with references or even a self-written explanation.
  17. Jun 7, 2015 #16
    I was wondering if I should bump a post, I really don't care if it looks unprofessional, I just want to know what the mods think?
  18. Jun 7, 2015 #17


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    Staff: Mentor

    You may bump your post once after 24 hours, and only that one time, it's in the rules.
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