Michael Schwandt has written, communicated, and thought extensively about quality management on SDN, discussion forums, wiki pages and blog posts. Here are his recent posts:
- Quality: Invitation To Clean Up Your Forum Threads
- Update on Quality, Control and Usability
- Improve Quality and Usability in Forums
- Next steps on improving quality
- Moving to Strict Rules to improve Quality and Control
To see how things are going, I took a look around this morning.
I dug into 2 forums, with over 300,000 messages and 60,000 threads each. From a summary page, I drilled into posters to see what is available (how sharing/caring are they), and how many posts and unanswered questions they have (how neat/tidy). I feel qualified to do this is as I’ve closed my open questions. I’ve omitted personal data.
- 3 out of 14 posters had an email address on their forum profile
- 3 out of 14 (but not the same 3) had email, cell number or other on their business card
- 4 posters had more than 10 open questions (1 had over 100)
- There were 15 posts, but only 14 unique posters in this sample
- 4 out of 14 posters had an email address on their forum profile
- 2 out of 14 (none of the prior 4) had email, cell number or other on their business card
- 4 posters had more than 10 open questions (2 had over 100, one astoundingly close to 400)
- Likewise, 1 duplicate poster
|Forum||Posters||Total Posts||Open Questions|
I’d say the “you can’t ask new questions if you have more than 10 open” rule isn’t working.
There is also a blatantly anonymous user id that I’ll not chase today.
I tried to see wiki traffic patterns, and was side-tracked by quality issues. I am leery of page ID numbers like 68,747,521 being actual counts, as over a decade of SAP notes by thousands of authors topped 1 milllion not long ago.
As Dave Barry always said, “I am not making this up!” — I picked a recently edited wiki page to view number of edits, duration, and found:
Instead of the advertised content, it’s a flaming, misspelled, low (or no) quality discussion forum post. I’ve spray-painted the user ID on the image; it’s not hard to find. If the author meant to improve wiki quality, they missed seriously.
Above is the slightly-hard-to-find RESTORE button I used to revert the last good version of this wiki page.
This isn’t a moral of the above content, it’s a return to the New Year’s Resolution theme. My company has a matching gift program where my donations to charities are met 100% up to an annual limit. I just looked back at the last 4 years and found I haven’t hit that limit. I intend to go beyond in 2009.