User:Thommey/Crossposting

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What is Crossposting?

The type of crossposting I want to explain here is the one on IRC. It means that someone posts a question to mutiple channels - maybe even across networks at about the same time. Example: (#eggtcl on EFNet and #egghelp on freenode)

(13:03.49) -!- pmk [*****@*****] has joined #eggtcl
(13:04.59) < pmk> what's this ->
(13:05.09) < pmk> [13:01] illegal channel option: +google
(13:05.09) < pmk>     while executing
(13:05.09) < pmk> "channel set #***** +enforcebans +userbans +protectops +dontkickops +nodesynch +google"
(13:05.09) < pmk>     (file "eggdrop.conf" line 583)
(13:05.10) < pmk> ?
(12:52.07) -!- pmk [n=*****@*****] has joined #egghelp
(13:02.24) < pmk> what's this ->
(13:02.25) < pmk> [13:01] illegal channel option: +google
(13:02.25) < pmk>     while executing
(13:02.25) < pmk> "channel set #***** +enforcebans +userbans +protectops +dontkickops +nodesynch +google"
(13:02.25) < pmk>     (file "eggdrop.conf" line 583)
(13:02.26) < pmk> ?

...

Why would anyone do that?

The arguments I've seen are:

  1. I wanted to reach as many people as possible
  2. My problem is superimportant and I instantly need an answer
  3. I didn't understand the answer on the other channel or they told me to RTFM - I want a detailed answer

Why you should NOT do it

  1. You almost NEVER have a question that is so complicated that you need to reach more than one channel. Mostly, >50% of the users in those help channels know the answer to your question because it's so basic. => Asking on one channel is guaranteed to reach people who know the answer
  2. Then you aren't right on IRC. While IRC might be faster than email/forum/newgroup, it isn't in general. Nowadays, people on IRC are usually doing other things while being on IRC. Or they are watching way more than one channel. They do not attend and lurk in a channel to instantly jump on every question asked. You need patience when asking a question on IRC. Ask and wait for an answer. Remember: Helpers do not get paid. It's not a right to get help, it's a privilege.
  3. Someone now knows your problem and is familiar with it. He/she took the time to read your problem and reply. You should rather ask that person to elaborate the answer or explain it instead of asking in another channel. Doing that is offensive towards the one who helped you.

Consequences of doing it

If you ask a basic question on multiple channels, you will get multiple answers at the same time as well. That wastes the time of voluntary helpers. They aren't on the other channels (except a few), they do not see that someone already gave you an answer. That can be very annoying.

How to do it right

  • Join a channel
  • Read its rules and the channel topic carefully
  • Post your question as detailed as possible (no "hi, anyone here?" or "hi, can someone help me plz?!", people are lurking and will answer, typing "yes" all the time is annoying and most don't do it anymore, although there are available)
  • WAIT for an answer. I would recommend that you should wait at least an hour.
  • No reply? Then feel free to go to another channel but tell the old one that you are going to do that, your question is still unanswered and tell them when you got help on the other channel.


Note: This expresses my personal view.

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