Growing confusion between the sections in which people post

Stargazer2006

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I have noticed a growing tendency from quite a few forum members (me included, sometimes, I'll admit) to get confused over the destination of their posts. The following may be a bit long and tedious, but if you are a regular poster (and/or if you post a lot of material) you absolutely need to be reminded of the following undesirable forum behaviour:

  • Posting material on totally different projects for comparison. A topic on a certain fighter, for instance, will prompt someone to post images of a totally different aircraft for comparison, instead of just linking a topic that already contains this aircraft. This has happened quite a bit in topics related to Japanese aircraft, with the consequence of straying way off-topic, as well as scattering the sources on a particular aircraft into places where people can't find them and taking the risk of duplicating them.
    A good tip: If you feel like comparing with something that's off-topic, post a link to a particular topic or post (if it's on the forum) or to a web page (if it's outside the forum).

  • Reposting material that already exists in other topics. This can be a consequence of failing to find something in the search engine, but often if is because we don't take the time to do it. A photo that was saved from another topic which you attach once again elsewhere is duplicated for no valuable reason. It's not two versions of the same image, two different scan qualities, it's just the same image saved twice on the forum's server...
    A good tip:
    Locate the pic you'd like to feature in your post, then right-click on it and copy its URL, then paste that URL it in the body of the message. This will integrate the picture in your post and prevent its duplication in the database. Another good idea (since the re-post is usually just for the sake of illustration) is to copy-paste the URL of the thumbnail and provide a link to the original page if people want to learn more or to download the higher-res version.

  • Starting discussions in topics concerned with facts. For example, a topic about the competing designs of a certain aircraft that derives into a polemic over the respective operational qualities of that aircraft versus its competitors. Or a discussion about a certain military competition that derives into a fight over military procurement, with political views toted and name-calling to boot.
    A good tip: If it's debatable, objectable, subjective or personal, it is always best in the Bar section.

  • Confusing the designations topics and the projects topics. This happens all the time! I am not exaggerating the problem here, we have had many such mixups recently when lists of designations get posted in the Projects sections, while strings of pics of a certain project get posted in the Designations section. This is really annoying because instead of having all the resources pertaining to one particular type in the same place, they are scattered all over (which, incidentally, increases the risks of duplicating material). Topics in the Projects sections are best to post images of little-known types or discussing the details of a project — not for posting just some unknown designation and expecting people to provide information. Topics in the Designations sections, however are the place to list designations (a one liner about each type can be given, maybe a small image to help identify a type, but no multiple pics for a specific aircraft or discussions), or to ask for clarification about a certain designation. If it can generate enough contents for a proper topic, a proper topic can then be created outside of the Designations thread and linked from there.
    A good tip: The Designations section is meant to provide an overall view in the form of an index, the Projects sections is meant to provide detailed information and images about certain types in particular.

  • Posting personal creations in factual topics. This tendency has increased of late... In the midst of a series of original material or "serious" artwork, one member chances to post one of his personal re-creations of that same type in fictitious colours, either in art or in plastic. This increases the risk for non-specialist to get confused over what is real and what isn't.
    A good tip: If you invented it, it is always best to post it in the User artwork section (or Modelling Forum if it's a model). You can always post a link to that page afterwards from the Projects page for the real aircraft, indicating it is a personal creation.

  • Confusing over where to post imaginary work. Some members use the User artwork section to post pics of artwork or pics of scale models for imaginary types or imaginary versions they found on the web. However, the User artwork section really is for personal graphic creations emanating from our forum members, and their personal creations must always be posted there.
    A good tip: If you find artwork on the web about a real project, it belongs in the Projects page that deals with that particular type; if you find artwork on the web about an imaginary type/version, post it in the Theoretical and speculative projects section; if you made a personal creation in the form of an illustration, it likely belongs in the User artwork section; if it's a scale model (whether the type is real or imagined, and whether it's from you or someone else) it belongs in the Modelling Forum section (this, of course, does not include official company-commissioned models).

  • Confusion over where to post patent material. Quite often, members who find an interesting patent automatically post it in the patent section... where it often remains unseen by people who might have had an interest for it.
    A good tip: If a patent emanates from an individual, or depicts some theoretical technology, it belongs in the Patent Pending section. However, if a patent emanates from an established aircraft manufacturer (especially if it depicts a project already mentioned in an existing topic), it is best to post it in the topic(s) related to that manufacturer/project found in the Projects or Aerospace sections.

  • Confusion over where to post futuristic images. I do admit that we have two sections in the forum that have quite a confusing labelling.
    A good tip: you find an illustration or a document depicting a somewhat extravagant project; if it emanates from a recognized company or engineer, it goes in the Theoretical and Speculative Projects section. If it's merely the work of a popular illustrator and/or has no scientific basis (in other words, if it's fantasy or sci-fi), it goes in the Alternative History or Future Speculation section.

  • Confusion between private and public posting. Although all members may not be aware of it, there are a couple of sections in this forum that can be visible only to senior members (i.e. Private Discussions).
    A good tip: If you are one such member, remember that some of the contents you may want to post somewhere might not be appropriate for all to see... and please remember not to mention or link stuff posted in these private sections.

  • Confusion between Early and Postwar Projects. Okay, this is not such a frequent one, but it sometimes happens when a type was created towards the end of World War II or immediately after.
    A good tip: The date of first flight isn't everything! The date of first public appearance isn't either... If it's a type that was clearly designed/developed during the war, even if it flew in the aftermath of the war, you can still post in it the Early section.


Thanks a lot for reading this through... and of course for making an effort to post in a more sensible way!
 

dan_inbox

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I for one am completely confused about what should go where in the General section, between Aerospace and Military.
I'd imagine that the Military section is for military projects and the Aerospace for civilian, but in fact Aerospace is chock-full of military projects too.
I am not complaining since it isn't a big inconvenience, just suggesting that the intended purpose of each section could be clarified.
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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From the forum index:

Aerospace
Aerospace discussion on any topics you like - not unbuilt projects

Military
Discussion about tanks, ships, and other military technologies - not unbuilt projects

Seems pretty clear to me, but if not -

Aerospace - aeroplanes, spacecraft, missiles - things that fly and technologies thereof
Military - anything military but not Aerospace e.g. tanks, naval warships, guns etc

If you can think of a better name than Military let me know.

Ground and Naval Weapons?
 

CJGibson

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'If you can think of a better name than Military let me know.'

Panzerporn?

Chris
 

sferrin

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CJGibson said:
'If you can think of a better name than Military let me know.'

Panzerporn?

Chris

That would suggest tanks only. "Military other than aerospace" sounds clunky. I don't have an answer but I agree it can get confusing as "Military" can mean news, hardware, history, strategy,. . .
 

dan_inbox

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PaulMM (Overscan) said:
If you can think of a better name than Military let me know.
Aha. Now I understand your intent, Paul.

Not really better, but maybe clearer?
Other military technologies - not unbuilt projects
 

Grey Havoc

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The current name is fine IMHO. However, if it does need to be changed, how about 'Defence of the Realm'?
 

Rickshaw

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Grey Havoc said:
The current name is fine IMHO. However, if it does need to be changed, how about 'Defence of the Realm'?

Which realm?
 

TomS

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There is a case to be made for separating the not-aerospace content into Maritime and Terrestrial (land-based) forums -- as is largely done in the Secret Projects side. But untangling all the existing threads could be a Herculean project.
 

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