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Idea: New type of thread ("Topic format"): Non-editable
Thread poster: Katalin Horváth McClure

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
May 7

After reading a few recent forum discussions, an idea occurred to me. What about a new type of thread (or "Topic format") in which posts cannot be edited. This would be something the thread's initiator could chose, the same way as now we can chose "Standard" or "Inclusive" (length and number of posts limited). This would be a third choice: "Non-editable".
In this type of thread, once a post is posted, it is final: there would be no edit button at all.

The way it would work is
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After reading a few recent forum discussions, an idea occurred to me. What about a new type of thread (or "Topic format") in which posts cannot be edited. This would be something the thread's initiator could chose, the same way as now we can chose "Standard" or "Inclusive" (length and number of posts limited). This would be a third choice: "Non-editable".
In this type of thread, once a post is posted, it is final: there would be no edit button at all.

The way it would work is that when we create a new post (either the initial one or a reply) there would be no "Post" button, only "Preview" and "Cancel". So, we would be forced to click on Preview and see how the post looks like. It would be in the preview window where we could first see the "Post" button, along with the "Preview" button, and"Cancel".
There would be warnings to call attention to the non-editable nature of the post, just like the warnings when posting into an "Inclusive" thread.

This idea came to me when I was reading comments about people's experiences whereby a post, after replies were posted and referred back to this post, was edited, sometimes in a way that the replies (which were posted before the editing happened) became irrelevant/disconnected/strange for the readers.
A similar issue was discussed regarding Agrees (to a post which is subsequently edited).
Non-editable threads would not have this problem.
I think the artificial hurdle of having to go through the preview window may also serve as a reminder to be careful with typos and make sure the post is such that we are OK with posting in a non-editable form. Any typos that still remain in posts are likely to be more forgiven in this case.

Would this be something worth to try?
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DZiW
 

Christel Zipfel  Identity Verified
Member (2004)
Italian to German
+ ...
Personally, I don't see any problems May 7

But I believe this idea (please don't get me wrong) is somehow an overreaction to what happened quite recently in some unfortunate threads. After all, we normally edit a post in order to correct mistakes or add/change a sentence or two with the intention of clarifying or reinforcing what we have written before, certainly not aiming to change the original post in essential points.

 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
Fair May 7

Katalin, I see your point, yet instead of Edit I'd prefer Add button.

On the other hand, no Edit option could make some participants think twice before posting something)


Elizabeth Tamblin
 

Elizabeth Tamblin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:00
Member (2012)
French to English
Not sure May 7

I think an Edit feature is fairly common on forums. Twitter (I know it's not a forum as such), does not have an Edit function, but it allows you to delete posts altogether. I'm not sure how things work on Facebook.

Because they are used to having it, I think people expect an opportunity to be able to edit or delete posts.

What I have suggested previously is to limit the time period allowed for editing posts, so that anybody involved in the discussion might reasonably s
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I think an Edit feature is fairly common on forums. Twitter (I know it's not a forum as such), does not have an Edit function, but it allows you to delete posts altogether. I'm not sure how things work on Facebook.

Because they are used to having it, I think people expect an opportunity to be able to edit or delete posts.

What I have suggested previously is to limit the time period allowed for editing posts, so that anybody involved in the discussion might reasonably still be around when a change is made.

A 15-30 minute editing opportunity seems reasonable.
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Robert Forstag
 

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Clarification May 7

Maybe it wasn't clear in my first post, but I am not suggesting to change the current forum format.
This would be an option, an additional format type (in addition to the current two types) to choose from, when the thread is started. This format could be selected if the starter of the thread felt it would be beneficial for the topic at hand. (I am not sure how often it would be used, and we probably wouldn't know, until the option was actually there. Just like with the "Inclu
... See more
Maybe it wasn't clear in my first post, but I am not suggesting to change the current forum format.
This would be an option, an additional format type (in addition to the current two types) to choose from, when the thread is started. This format could be selected if the starter of the thread felt it would be beneficial for the topic at hand. (I am not sure how often it would be used, and we probably wouldn't know, until the option was actually there. Just like with the "Inclusive" threads - I don't see then very often, but apparently some users do use that format.
Anyway, the non-editable thread would have a note on top (just like with the "Inclusive" type threads) so that people would know that they won't be able to edit their posts. (This is in response to the notion that people "expect" to be able to edit.)
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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Additional benefit May 7

DZiW wrote:

On the other hand, no Edit option could make some participants think twice before posting something)


Yep, that would be one of the benefits.


Elizabeth Tamblin
Kay Denney
 

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Possible solution for a concern May 7

Christel Zipfel wrote:

But I believe this idea (please don't get me wrong) is somehow an overreaction to what happened quite recently in some unfortunate threads.

Not an overreaction to, but - as I said - triggered by some recent discussions. (Although the Agree issue was brought up already a year or so ago.)

After all, we normally edit a post in order to correct mistakes or add/change a sentence or two with the intention of clarifying or reinforcing what we have written before, certainly not aiming to change the original post in essential points.


This is what I thought, too, but apparently and unfortunately, this is not always the case. In fact, several colleagues mentioned cases where "material" edits occurred, not necessarily in the very recent past. I have no reason to doubt those claims, and at the same time I don't think such editing would always be for some malicious reason. Yet, the result is, that unless someone quoted verbatim the previous post (or part of the post) he/she was referring to, the reference will end up odd (nobody would know what it refers to).
So, I was thinking, if that is a real issue, how it could be solved/prevented? I thought that if the non-editable thread option was available, those who were concerned about this issue could select that topic type for their threads. For everybody else, there is the good old Standard topic type.


Elizabeth Tamblin
 

Jean Dimitriadis  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 04:00
Member
English to French
+ ...
Sounds good, as an option May 7

I wouldn't use this format myself, as I have already expressed my views on the ability to edit one's post in the past, but why not have it as an option?

As far as there is a warning, as with the inclusive format, it would be OK for me.


Katalin Horváth McClure
Annamaria Amik
 

Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I think that reducing the editing window for *all* posts makes the most sense May 7

Elizabeth Tamblin wrote:

I think an Edit feature is fairly common on forums. Twitter (I know it's not a forum as such), does not have an Edit function, but it allows you to delete posts altogether. I'm not sure how things work on Facebook.

Because they are used to having it, I think people expect an opportunity to be able to edit or delete posts.

What I have suggested previously is to limit the time period allowed for editing posts, so that anybody involved in the discussion might reasonably still be around when a change is made.

A 15-30 minute editing opportunity seems reasonable.


Maybe 15-30 minutes is a bit too short of an editing window, but I also think it would overly complicate matters to create a separate “no editing option” for certain forum threads. Personally, I am in favor of maintaining the same rules across the board for all forums.

I do think it makes sense to reduce the “editing window” to no more than an hour. I think it reasonable for anyone reading a message several hours after it was posted to be able to assume that said message will not be subject to further change - and most certainly that it will not be reconstructed so as to retroactively take into account points made later in the discussion.

It seems to me that the main point of the “edit” function is to allow posters an opportunity to correct obvious mistakes that they notice soon after they post. An editing window of 30-60 minutes would allow this, while maintaining the integrity of the forum and forcing posters to be more careful in their writing.


Elizabeth Tamblin
Natasha Ziada
 

Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
? May 7

The thing is, would this apply to team members? 😂😂😂

Jan Truper
Kay Denney
Michele Fauble
 

Elizabeth Tamblin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:00
Member (2012)
French to English
:) May 7

Chris S wrote:

The thing is, would this apply to team members? 😂😂😂


Should do!


 

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
There is already a different structure - rules are the same May 7

Robert Forstag wrote:

Personally, I am in favor of maintaining the same rules across the board for all forums.

The rules are the same, but there are already two kinds of forum structures, which can be selected at will when starting the thread. The Standard, such as this one, and the “Inclusive”, where everyone is limited to max. 2 posts, 300 characters each (if I remember correctly).
So, the “one, uniform structure” is already of the past.

[Edited at 2019-05-07 23:28 GMT]


 

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I would assume it would apply to everyone May 7

Chris S wrote:

The thing is, would this apply to team members? 😂😂😂

Anybody could choose the non-editable type of topic when starting a thread.
If you meant whether the non-editability would apply to Proz staff, I would assume so.
How is it with the “Inclusive” type? Can staff members overrule the limitations for their own posts? I don’t know.
But this whole thing is not about posts by staff, and I don’t want to focus on that. Anecdotal evidence suggests the concern has been around for a while, regarding posts by regular users/members.


 

Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Is further customization what is really needed? May 7

Katalin Horváth McClure wrote:

Robert Forstag wrote:

Personally, I am in favor of maintaining the same rules across the board for all forums.

The rules are the same, but there are already two kinds of forum structures, which can be selected at will when starting the thread. The Standard, such as this one, and the “Inclusive”, where everyone is limited to max. 2 posts, 300 characters each (if I remember correctly).
So, the “one, uniform structure” is already of the past.

[Edited at 2019-05-07 23:28 GMT]


I realize that, but I don’t see this as a good excuse to customize forum formats still further - whether in terms of length or number of contributions, ability to edit text, permitted number of syllables in each word, imposition of a particular metric or rhyme scheme, or whatever.

Surely there are other matters that staff can be urged to devote their time and energy to (i.e., by those who still hold out hope that devoting their time and energy to pressing for such changes serves some useful purpose)....

[Edited at 2019-05-08 00:03 GMT]


Chris S
 

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Rhyme scheme - I like that!!! May 8

Robert Forstag wrote:
imposition of a particular metric or rhyme scheme


I like that!!!


 
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Idea: New type of thread ("Topic format"): Non-editable

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