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janbb's avatar

How many times should a Jelly comment in a thread?

Asked by janbb (44048 points ) April 30th, 2014

I am noticing increasingly that some Jellies will constantly interject comments in a thread to the point where it becomes all about them and not about the original post. This is not directed at only one person nor intended as an attack. It does detract from the flow of the Qs and As. I think it is valid for the poster to come back repeatedly with comments but other people are often grandstanding, derailing or otherwise interrupting the flow. I do realize there is room for some back and forth but not a total derailment. This is not asked to be confrontational but to improve the quality of the conversations around here. Your thoughts?

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43 Answers

Mimishu1995's avatar

The answer: I need a down-to-earth guidance on this matter…

rojo's avatar

Depends on the question.

Yetanotheruser's avatar

I don’t think there should be any limit on the number of comments any Jelly can make. I noticed something like this here and also on other sites. I think it is the nature of the beast, so to speak. I’ve seen some threads here become extremely derailed, but it seems (IMHO) that there are two types of “derailing” comment. The first, and least desirable, is when comments become personal, either by design or by interpretation, and the thread becomes a flame war. This can usually be curbed by moderators, and either the thread comes back to focus, or it quietly (or not so quietly) burns out of control, and dies from disinterest.

The other type seems to occur when the OP has been answered and thoroughly discussed, and the discussion degrades into mindless, fun banter.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@Yetanotheruser which one do you think I often fall into?

janbb's avatar

I’m not looking for a particular number rule just some guidelines.

(And @Mimishu1995 – you’re starting to do it already here now.)

@Yetanotheruser I tend to agree with you and “stop following” when it descends to the two person flame war but this is happening too often near the beginning.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

More than once but less than 500,000.

Coloma's avatar

“Quality” of conversation is subjective.
One persons rigidity vs. anothers verbosity, neither are “wrong”, but one cannot judge preference.
I enjoy allowing things to flow and unfold, especially in the social section. Some people might prefer to keep a discussion 100% on track with no deviating from the topic, while others like myself like leaving plenty of space for things to just show up as they will.

I take no issue with interjecting some humor, or wandering off the beaten path for a moment or 3.
I understand keeping to topic in “general”, ( even though I see no reason to not interject a little whispered levity at times ) but otherwise, I think trying to control others sharings is, well, controlling. I prefer spontaneous unfoldings over rigid topical protocol any day of the week. Probably why I rarely ask a Q. in general. I WANT to engage in lively, stimulating and creative conversation.

janbb's avatar

“I WANT to engage in lively, stimulating and creative conversation.”

@Coloma So do I my dear, so do I.

Mimishu1995's avatar

Err… @janbb, can I talk now? <shivering>

GloPro's avatar

If it was a question I asked I will interact with responders and have more posts than when I just answer another’s Q.
Sometimes I go back and forth with one individual within a question, which I think is normal. I try not to do it in every thread. The last one I remember posting multiple times and possibly too much was the e cigs question.
I feel like if it is a productive exchange of ideas or info with another jelly then it’s fine. Doesn’t bother me.
I try to give others a chance on TJBM and those types. I’ll pop in for a few turns and then sit out for a bit.

dappled_leaves's avatar

This is an odd concept to me. How can we have “lively, stimulating and creative conversation” if each person is allowed to comment only once? That is not a conversation at all.

I think you are picturing the conversation as an additive process, with each quip by a single person drowning out other voices. I tend to see it as a subtractive process, with more and more people leaving after one or two comments, leaving the interested parties to keep at it. The people who leave are the ones who are not engaged in the conversation… not the other way around.

ucme's avatar

There are three jellies I can immediately think of that post many times over constantly.
Doesn’t bother me unduly, but I do get a slight urge to toss dirty socks in their faces when I see it.

janbb's avatar

@dappled_leaves As I said, I am not looking for a specific number or that people should only comment once. I guess I am really talking about derailing early on or interjecting oneself too many times so that the conversation is degraded.

Maybe I just need to take a break if I am not getting much out of here lately.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I comment until I have nothing meaningful to add. Like @GloPro if it’s something I asked I’m far more likely to comment more often.

Some people just have a tendency to repeat themselves over and over until the other person gets bored of the conversation and leaves and this somehow makes them feel like they won the debate. This isn’t anything to do with fluther though, just life in general.

dxs's avatar

I don’t think it matters. If someone who isn’t the one who asked the question is engaging in the discussion, then I think it’s fine. As long as it isn’t off-topic.

Coloma's avatar

@dxs I really like your orange avatar, orange is such a cool color, it is bright and exciting and vibrant, and, oh…am I going off topic? lol

Blondesjon's avatar

I generally follow the “one good quip and I’m out” model.

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
Coloma's avatar

@Blondesjon Hit and run ey?

dxs's avatar

@Coloma Thanks! I made it myself…it looks cool in blue in opposite mode, too, but less easier to identify amongst others.

Symbeline's avatar

There isn’t any set number one should limit their interaction to in a thread, but I do admit that it gets out of hand when the flow changes to something entirely different than what the OP had suggested in their question.

I am guilty of this myself, but in the passed months I’ve made efforts to tone it down, and I snap myself back in line when I see that I’m talking about Vikings in a thread that was originally asking opinions about political matters. (for example) but no matter how hard I try, it’s never good enough :p

Thing is, it feels so natural to just start discussing whatever in a thread that you don’t always catch yourself doing it. But no, I don’t think there should be any limits to responses, as long as the original matter is not being ignored. Some off the line discussion is good, in fact that’s how I like Fluther; we can talk about anything and get into good subjects. But this can be done while respecting the actual question, too.

gailcalled's avatar

If there are ninety answers, and thirty of them are yours, you may need to find another hobby.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I should also add that I’ll generally stop commenting if I find the other person is repeating themselves as well.The conversation is going nowhere, so why bother….

Cruiser's avatar

This is why there is the general section to keep a question from being hijacked. Social is just that to be social and. The rigid rules and writing standards is why this place is not a nut house like other sites and also why a lot of people leave here. The ability to carry on a give and take is IMO part of the appeal of Fluther and why many do stay. IMO any more rules and you will see a lot of Jellies leave.

jerv's avatar

Depends on what they have to say, and whether they whisper to mark it as clearly a side comment.

rojo's avatar

@jerv is right

ibstubro's avatar

I love nothing more that a good derailment in the social section. I define a good derailment as occurring after there has been some productive discussion and involving a number of members participating more-or-less equally. I do not consider trying to make a question ‘all about you’ a derailment, I consider it rudeness.

Personally, unless I’m involved in a particularly entertaining hijack on a social question, I try to force myself to wait until there are multiple answers before I open it again. If there’s only one new post since my last one for a (long) while, then I check back in and comment if appropriate.

I also think that there is value in simply playing devil’s advocate, but it’s best to just post and leave it alone if you’re not really invested in a question. It’s annoying to see a member on one side of an argument, then turn around and see them pursuing the other side on another question. That’s not devil’s advocate…that’s argumentative.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@ibstubro “unless I’m involved in a particularly entertaining hijack”

Well… doesn’t everyone see one’s own hijack as “particularly entertaining”? Often accompanied by the eyerolls of others.

Symbeline's avatar

@dappled_leaves Haha pretty much. I think most hijacks are completely lame unless they’re mine. :D

dappled_leaves's avatar

@Symbeline As do I, of course. :)

ibstubro's avatar

Not necessarily, @dappled_leaves. I’ve been late to a question and thoroughly enjoyed a hijack only to find that it got back on track before I got there. Dang it! Not all hijacks are “Guess you had to be there.” Milestone parties are the glory of hijack, in that it’s a free-for-all of celebration. I’ve seen that break out on social questions.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@ibstubro Not really what I meant.

Coloma's avatar

Well, I would certainly miss Milo popping in here and there with his 2 cents. haha

Coloma's avatar

Okay…this reply makes 5 out of 33, I will consider this my limit, 1/6th of the majority.

jca's avatar

The debate and the freedom to discuss, relatively unhindered, make for intelligent conversation and also what help us to get to know one another. That’s what make Fluther a great site.

ibstubro's avatar

@dappled_leaves Really what I meant in my OP that you commented on.

Gourd. Who’s counting @Coloma? If It involves math, I’m outta here.

Leanne1986's avatar

When a Q gets derailed to the point where only two or three members are involved in a discussion that is completely irrelevant to the OP, I stop following (and yes, this is happening more and more recently).

I have noticed that recently there have been a number of cases of (what I consider) people posting for the sake of posting and that tends to cause an eye roll or two at my end but I figure that’s no different to real life. I know many people that talk even when they have nothing relevant to contribute, it’s like they’re afraid of not being part of the discussion so they add anything!

Mimishu1995's avatar

So, @janbb, can you tell me – the one who is utterly ignorant of basic social skills and have a tendency to derail the thread – how many times can I comment from the results of this thread?

janbb's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I would say the results were very inclusive but if you are making every other post and the thread is being derailed, it might be time to hold back. But that is just my opinion and I used to be guilty of it too in the past.

Blondesjon's avatar

used to be a regular penguin fest up in here . . .

janbb's avatar

@Blondesjon Yeah, the penguin isn’t very festive these days.

Coloma's avatar

^^^ Maybe the Penguin needs to play with green ducks more. lol

LornaLove's avatar

I love when a question takes a life of its own. That to me is the fun of a question. General questions of course are different. If two people banter away, after a lengthy discussion I see nothing wrong with that. In the end, we do become friends?

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