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Old 11-23-2019, 07:15 AM   #1
ondoho
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Add a Rule to Ban "Best Of" Type Questions?


Currently I perceive an increase in questions of the type
"What's better, distro A or distro B"
"Please recommend best app to accomplish X"
etc.
and I mean without adding any relevant information from the OP.

I know some forums have a rule that specifically forbids this type of "empty" "Best Of" questions, and enforce it if the OP does not add any relevant information.

I would suggest adding it to the rules. That might not help much, but at least it would allow mods to close this type of bikeshedding threads.

What are people's (and ultimately jeremy's) thoughts on this?
 
Old 11-23-2019, 10:55 AM   #2
fatmac
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Newbies from Windows & Mac are inundated with distro choices, but I do agree, we can only advise on our own tastes, in the main.

Might be an idea worth thinking about, but then what will a newbie ask(?).

Maybe make the distro search function more prominent to newbies(?).
 
Old 11-23-2019, 11:11 AM   #3
//////
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maybe LQ should make "best distro (sub?)forum" ?
 
Old 11-23-2019, 09:06 PM   #4
frankbell
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Given that most such questions are posted by persons completely new to and like inexperienced with Linux, I tend to think that banning such questions might turn away/off some potential Linux users.

Perhaps we can recommend pointing them to one of the "how to pick a distro" stickies and ask them to then post any specific questions they have afterwards.
 
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Old 11-24-2019, 12:07 AM   #5
Mill J
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankbell View Post
Given that most such questions are posted by persons completely new to and like inexperienced with Linux, I tend to think that banning such questions might turn away/off some potential Linux users.

Perhaps we can recommend pointing them to one of the "how to pick a distro" stickies and ask them to then post any specific questions they have afterwards.
Agreed. Some might argue that stickies do no good, but check out the views, obviously somebody is reading.

I actually think some of the fault belongs to a lot of us as well. Too many people(me included) are glad to push their distro and end up bickering long after the OP drops out.

 
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Old 11-24-2019, 02:14 AM   #6
syg00
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So .... what's the best way to handle this ....
 
Old 11-24-2019, 05:44 AM   #7
Lysander666
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I think a better question would be, "how do we, as a community, stop pushing away newbies by constantly recommending contradictory distros and bickering in threads about them?" This happens so frequently. I think we need to take a look at ourselves and how we can improve our attitude to new posters. They're not going to go away and such questions are not going to go away. Banning them is not the solution, I feel, our treatment of the problem is.

I think pointing newbies to a sticky about how to choose a new distro is the best way for now. That's said, Mill J's thread on the topic is somewhat prolix [though very informative] and is more likely to encourage newbies to post such threads. It may actually be counter-productive. Some nice easy-to-read bullet points with a few distros, their difficulty level and their philosophies would help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mill J View Post
I actually think some of the fault belongs to a lot of us as well. Too many people(me included) are glad to push their distro and end up bickering long after the OP drops out.
I'm with you in that we need to cast out the beam in our own eye[s] and the responsibility lies with us. I don't think I ever push my distro with new users, I'm always recommending Ubuntu or Mint, or occasionally Debian. I think part of the problem is the lack of consistency with our recommendations.

Last edited by Lysander666; 11-24-2019 at 11:02 AM.
 
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Old 11-24-2019, 07:26 AM   #8
hazel
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I tend to recommend AntiX for old hardware and Mint for new. Mint is especially good if you have tricky hardware and aren't fussy about things being libre. I certainly wouldn't recommend Slackware to a newbie unless he clearly had a hacker temperament (for real, not a would-be) or was an oldie with work experience on the command line as I had.

I don't recommend Ubuntu because imho it's bloated and it holds your hand so much that you never learn anything. If someone wants to learn how Linux works from a mainline distro, not a special newbie-friendly one, I'd recommend Debian Stable.
 
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Old 11-24-2019, 07:37 AM   #9
jsbjsb001
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While I have no interest in responding to the OP who started this thread...

Quote:
Originally Posted by syg00 View Post
So .... what's the best way to handle this ....
Perhaps a rule against posting unless everyone here agrees in advance on the "answer"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lysander666 View Post
...Banning them is not the solution, I feel, our treatment of the problem is.
...
Agree. I think Lysander has nailed it above.

The issue here is that someone who is completely new to Linux is overwhelmed by the sheer amount of choices on offer, and there are likely a number of suitable choices available. And far too many times I've seen here that some members are more interested in promoting their favorite distro, and just don't care about giving the OP a unbiased recommendation(s). Personally I think this is pretty selfish on the part of those who are only interested in promoting their favorite distro, but a "rule" isn't going to stop that. If a mod were to close a "bikeshedding thread", then that opens them up to be accused of bias themselves. So as pointed out above, the answer lies with members actually responding in an unbiased fashion (not that I'm holding my breath for that in relation to some members).

Personally, I look at the OP's experience level, along with what they wish to use Linux for/to do. If someone had the required skills and DID actually want to do pentesting, I'd even recommend Kali, or perhaps Parrot OS. I also try and make a habit of recommending to the OP to actually try some suitable choices, and decide for themselves - they are the one that's going to be using it at the end of the day, aren't they?

Besides, there already IS a rule saying;

Quote:
Originally Posted by LQ Rules
LinuxQuestions.org retains the right to remove, edit, move or close any thread for any reason.
...so doesn't the above cover it if a thread gets out of hand ?

FWIW, I also agree with both Frank and Mill J's answers.
 
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Old 11-24-2019, 09:06 AM   #10
wpeckham
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To a new users these questions are important and do not seem unreasonable. We need to answer them gently, and by pointing to the places to find and evaluate choices and learn, not by blocking the question. This is a clear part of why Linuxquestions exists, and the value it provides to the community. We do not have to agree, we do not have to disagree, we do need to guide and inform.
 
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Old 11-24-2019, 11:47 AM   #11
dugan
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We obviously can't ban these type of questions because they're asked in the yearly polls.

The best way to handle those questions is to answer them.

Last edited by dugan; 11-24-2019 at 06:02 PM.
 
Old 11-24-2019, 12:10 PM   #12
EdGr
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"Best" always begs the question "best for what?"

Since everyone's needs are different, we get 20 different answers. This probably does scare newbies away, but it is better than having just one answer.
Ed
 
Old 11-24-2019, 12:18 PM   #13
pan64
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This is quite simple, the best distro is my distro.
In general there are other question/post types, like:
Quote:
"Error dsflkjbvs occurred in line 43" [please] help to solve it.
or
Quote:
"URGENT: I downloaded sdlfgsrl and installed but does not work"
which cannot be answered.
Not to speak about the single post users which never returned....

These are more or less low quality questions and you can
1. ignore
2. link a relevant sticky or
3. link a general page to explain how to ask smart question
4. try to give some useful hints, hoping something

Almost forgot. The best solution is mine:
I would rather close them after a while (including a common/general explanation and removing them from the list of open threads), but it still require additional works from the mods.
 
Old 11-25-2019, 06:13 AM   #14
cynwulf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ondoho View Post
...it would allow mods to close this type of bikeshedding threads.
Reminded me of this.

 
Old 11-25-2019, 06:53 AM   #15
hazel
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What do people think of this?
 
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