Tips On Posting Effectively

Posted on: Thu, 08/16/2001 - 9:20pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Last night, I was going through the Main Discussion part of the board to try to find one particular thread. I did find it on Page 5. But, in so doing, I also recognized, that perhaps I could add to the part of this Discussion part of the board and suggest some Tips on Posting.

First of all, I think it's important to note that there is NEVER any question too stupid to ask here. If the question is in your head and you require an answer for it, it's not stupid. So, ask your question.

There are many different sections for Discussion on this board, all with appropriate titles. When first beginning to post, you may want to check out what goes under each Discussion heading - what the heck is under Living with PA or what are people discussing under Products?

There is also a Search feature on this board (which we did lose for a short time). If you feel your question is general (i.e., not specific to your own situation alone), you may want to do a Search of the board and see if the topic has already been raised previously. Then, depending on how long ago it was raised, you can decide whether you want to raise it again or not.

What I find, and it's only because I have been posting for some time is that if someone raises a question that I know has been raised before and discussed A LOT, I will find the particular previous thread and re-raise it to compliment the new thread that has been raised. I do not do this to tell the person posting the new thread that they should NOT be posting this thread again, but I do it because they may get additional information from people not posting on this board any longer or from people that had already answered the question once or twice before and aren't up to answering it again. I often do this and hope that no one is ever offended that I do. It is not to negate the new thread in any way.

People posting and reading this board travel it in different ways. Some old-timers, like myself (and I mean that as far as my actual age as well [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/eek.gif[/img] ), simply click on the Daily Topics heading and scroll down that to see if there is anything for that day we would like to read.

Other people start in Main Discussion and work themselves down the Discussion headings as time allows. Saying this may make some of you feel as though you *should* put everything under Main Discussion so that it does get noticed for sure.

However, I also believe that you have to sit back and decide if what you are asking or commenting about warrants being placed under the Main Discussion heading on the board, or is there a section of the board where it would be more appropriate?

I've noticed that there are separate threads on different food allergies and I am in no way trying to offend anyone. The thing is, this is a peanut allergy website. We do all recognize that most of the people posting here are dealing with more than peanut allergies. I'm wondering if greater response to questions about different food allergies might not get a better/greater response if they were placed in the Off Topic section of the discussion board, simply because in Off Topic you could basically start your own mini-board about that particular food allergy.

Check out the Living with PA section of the board. To me, it's a much under-used section of this board. A lot of things being discussed under Main Discussion are actually things that would fit more easily under Living with PA (IMHO).

Last night alone, on the first page of Main Discussion I saw quite a few threads going about very specific food products, which would normally be placed under Manufacturers - Food (Safe and Unsafe).

Oh, and I should add that please don't think I'm all high and mighty here, I have certainly done my share of placing posts under headings where they should have been placed elsewhere. I think where I'm coming from now is that when people are attempting to read and post on the board, a lot of people are finding it cluttered and disorganized (this is not only coming from me).

I'd like to use an example of something that happened to me months ago. I had received an e-mail from Christie's (Nabisco) re Chips Ahoy and Oreo cookies and their other products. When I went to post the information, I must have pulled up at least ten threads where this information was appropriately posted and warranted. Last night again, I saw another either Chips Ahoy or Oreo thread going.

The other thing I do do, if I really want something to get attention (which basically means placing it under Main Discussion), but I feel that it isn't Main Discussion material, say something under Schools, I will post my topic under Schools but also post the same title under Main Discussion with the orange arrow smilie (above) directing people to read that thread under Schools. That way, there is no response under Main Discussion and that thread is quickly relegated from the first page of Main Discussion but the other thread under Schools does get the discussion or attention.

I'm really hoping that this doesn't come off as sounding harsh or terrible or bi*chy. I just know that things can get cluttered up easily.

I noticed with a lot of topics being posted under Main Discussion (and it isn't simply symptomatic of it being summer and not much activity on the board - there were 45 topics yesterday alone running), it's very easy for someone's very valid concern, question, or whatever, to quickly be relegated to Page 2 without one single response (it's usually the people that have not had a response to their thread at all that I attempt to answer in some way because I do feel really badly when that happens).

I know that I have discussed this with other members and their feelings are the same as mine. I thought I would try to help out a little so that the board appears to be organized and running smoothly (even if the people posting, such as myself, aren't! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img] )

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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Posted on: Fri, 08/17/2001 - 8:28am
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Cindy --
While I have no problem seeing "other" food allergies segregated a bit, I'd rather they not fall into the Off Topic area. My perception of that particular zone is that it's more of a chat area, for things that are related to PA only in that PA folks/families are the posters!
Perhaps we could have an "Multiple Food Allergy" section? "MFA" information posted here has been helpful to me on more than one occasion, and I have been pleased to be able to pass on some of what I have learned while dealing with Matt's allergies.
For example, a lot of us do our own baking, rather than go with processed baked goods, or do so simply to expand our limited "safe" choices. Those of us having to bake without eggs (or wheat, or whatever) often have to be pretty creative to end up with something resembling food -- and it is encouraging to share our successful results, rather than risk creating disaster upon disaster, particularly when we're working with pricey ingredients, like some of the safe chocolate/cocoa products.
I really do understand what you're saying, Cindy -- and if I may use a friendly parallel -- in my case it's the asthma posts that aren't relevant to our situation, but I would certainly not want them to be bumped into the OT area, either...they are more specific to the allergy issue than favorite books or actors/actresses!
Just my .02.
Sue (who decided that this post needed a [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] )
[This message has been edited by M'smom (edited August 17, 2001).]

Posted on: Fri, 08/17/2001 - 8:41am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Sue, great idea! I'm wondering if this is something you could approach Chris about. If we could have our own Multiple Food Allergy discussion heading.
I do know there is a thread running under Living With PA entitled Multiple Food Allergies (only because I started it) but that doesn't seem to really encompass everything you would like to have in one area.
As I said, I didn't mean to offend anyone by suggesting Multiple Food Allergies went in the Off Topic section. It was top of the head thinking as I couldn't think of any other section where they would fit. And you came up with the solution - make a section where they would fit.
The only reason I even mentioned food allergies in my Tips on Posting was that because in going through Main Discussion last night I saw a couple of threads, with little or no responses, about other food allergies.
I felt badly for the people posting, but I also wasn't able to contribute at all to help them out and felt that if they had a different/better place to post their specific allergy, they may have gotten some response.
I am fairly active in asking questions about asthma and their possible connection to PA or it's repercussions when your child is also PA. This questions I usually raise under Living with PA, and as with everything, if someone doesn't have an asthmatic child, they don't have to enter the thread. But when it comes to actual Asthma links to other websites, I have placed that type of information under the Links discussion heading of the board. I have also placed different medical information links under the Links section of the board.
Again, I think you have a wonderful idea, especially because, as I did note above, most of the people posting here are not dealing with PA alone. I really do think that you should e-mail Chris and ask him to consider this.
I am sorry if I offended you, but in suggesting Off Topic, I did actually get you thinking about what really *should* be done.
Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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[This message has been edited by Cindy Spowart Cook (edited August 17, 2001).]

Posted on: Fri, 08/17/2001 - 9:15am
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Cindy --
I'm not the slightest bit offended! Glad you aren't either. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] The asthma issue was the best other yours/mine/ours example I could think of. Definitely relevant, but not something everyone has to deal with.
I'd actually be pleased to have a separate forum, as it would help me streamline my time. Which actually would be a good thread -- what other things in our lives have had to give way to the time spent managing PA/MFA?
At the moment, in our household, it's the laundry! I actually went out in public in the next best thing to my PJ's today -- I have been staying up late nights in the kitchen, trying to stock the freezer with some of our favorites (spaghetti sauce, zucchini bread and the like) while fresh produce is inexpensive and available. We really do eat well, but it can be pretty labor intensive sometimes. Alongside the laundry situation, for the first time ever, I have considered having someone come in to clean. Won't do it, but the fact that I have considered it tells me I'm about at my limits...
(We also were in a moderately significant car accident recently, which has added thrice-weekly physical therapy to my summer schedule. Never a dull moment in our household!!)
Sue

Posted on: Fri, 08/17/2001 - 10:47am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Sue, not only do you have reason to contact Chris with an excellent idea but you also have a good thread starter there too! Excellent stuff!
The reason, I think, myself, that Chris would be receptive to a discussion heading for multiple food allergies is that it still means people are coming to his website rather than going somewhere else or joining a group
such as POFAK. They would still be coming to PA.com as their main source of information (for those that do, I know that not everyone does), but they would also be able to get information and get the same encouragement, concern, caring, support, etc. that PA parents receive here but about the other food allergies they're also dealing with.
I know I did post a few months ago about whether people had any other websites they visited for their concerns, and PA.com was THE site that was visited. Now, I'm not clear if I asked it in a PA only kinda way or if it was all inclusive.
I do know that for me, although I use FAAN for educational materials for my son's schools, etc., I did find it rather disappointing that they didn't have a discussion board and wondered where people would find a wonderful, well known website that dealt with multiple food allergies as this one does so well with PA. (Now, for those of you who require this disclaimer, I am in no way saying that FAAN *should* have a discussion board - I understand that that is not part of their mission statement).
And I do feel the need to reiterate that the only reason I did mention multiple food allergies at all was because people are posting about other allergies and getting little or no response. It's quite obvious people feel comfortable posting here, so, Sue, you're definitely right-on, give them an appropriate heading to post under.
Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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Posted on: Fri, 08/17/2001 - 2:34pm
rebekahc's picture
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Joined: 12/02/1999 - 09:00

I really like the idea of a new board for other allergies. Maybe it could encompass asthma and other medical conditions as well?? I know there have been a few times I've had questions about Logan's other allergies and medical problems that I've been reluctant to post because there hasn't been an appropriate spot. It's been a bit of a disappointment because I know I would be able to get some great advice from the wonderful members here!
Rebekah

Posted on: Fri, 08/17/2001 - 3:25pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I did e-mail this thread to Chris earlier tonight in the hopes that he would have a look at it and see what we have, what I think, well thought out.
Again, Rebekah, with what you posted, it reiterates that THIS is the place that we come. THIS is the place that we feel comfortable posting. It's like, for the most part, we're all one big happy family and we do appreciate hearing from people that we already *know* and whose judgement and advice we value and appreciate.
I do know that Chris responded quickly when he realized the some members recognized the need for the Off Topic section. I personally think that that particular section helped us all get to know one another a heckuva lot better because we were talking about different things other than PA, but again, with people that we already felt we *knew* and felt like talking about other things with.
It's interesting how my search through Main Discussion last night for one particular thread and me noticing people posting about food allergies and getting little or no response and somehow including this in my Tips on Posting (and thank heaven no one has accused me of being high and mighty since I believe I am the first person other than perhaps Chris - I may be mistaken - to provide some tips, as this was not my intention at all), and we end up with a whole new really positive thing happening.
Excellent stuff! Chris, are you hearing us?
Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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Posted on: Sat, 08/18/2001 - 1:11pm
Chris PeanutAllergy Com's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/25/2001 - 09:00

Yes, we can look into this further.
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Stay Safe,
[email]Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com[/email]

Posted on: Sat, 10/27/2001 - 1:39pm
Sue's picture
Sue
Offline
Joined: 02/13/1999 - 09:00

time to bring this up again
Sue

Posted on: Sun, 10/28/2001 - 5:13am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Sue, since you did bring this one up again, I thought I *should* add one very important point I forgot in my initial post.
If you're new to the internet, when you go to choose your UserName, for heaven's sake, do NOT use your real name or a variation thereof that will be easily recognized. Why not? Because, if you're like me and come on here and talk about different stuff that's going on with your PA child's school (not necessarily positive things), you cannot refer your school to this excellent website unless you want them to see what you've said about them! LOL!
I was VERY new to the internet when I found this site and didn't know any better. I do have another UserName for this website when my old one blipped out on me sometime this year, but now that I have bugged things up for myself, I continue to use my real name.
Definitely don't use your real name or a variation thereof.
Sue, if you don't mind my asking, why did you feel it was time to bring this one up again?
Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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Posted on: Sun, 10/28/2001 - 7:03am
Sue's picture
Sue
Offline
Joined: 02/13/1999 - 09:00

Hi Cindy,
I'm glad you asked.
There are a lot of new people to this board. When I first started the board I wasn't real sure where to post things or how to do a search - seems a lot simpler now LOL.
Anyway, I thought you made some great points, as usual, about using and posting on the board.
Subjects are really getting out of whack again and I hoped that a reminder (yours) might help get things a little better organized. People may get more responses on their posts if they put them under the topics that fit the best.
O.K. Is that enough reason's [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
Sue in Sunny Arizona

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