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Nimis's avatar nubie question, but what makes a question self-promotional?

Asked by Nimis (13199points) September 15th, 2008

For example: If someone asks you about your favourite bands, do you assume it’s because they want to tell you about their favourite bands? This is not meant to be passive-aggresive to the moderators. I think they’re doing an awesome job. I’m just curious.

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13 Answers

eambos's avatar

Linking to one’s own webpage in order to increase traffic is one example.

MrItty's avatar

“Hey, guys, I’ve got this awesome new (product, website, idea, store, eBay listing, etc). Come check it out!!!”

That kinda thing.

Nimis's avatar

What about less obvious examples?
Wait a minute…aren’t we all saying “Hey, guys! I’ve got this interesting idea! Let’s talk about it!”?

richardhenry's avatar

Good question. This is a healthy ‘grey area’ for us. Here’s a case that we would probably be fine with:

* A well established user (someone who has been around for a while, made some friends and been helpful to others) asks for some help with their website. It is the first time they have ever brought it up, and we genuinely believe they aren’t just looking for attention. We would probably be fine with either them wanting assistance or a design crit.

Here’s some cases that we would probably not be fine with:

* Someone running a marriage advice blog, only ever answering questions related to marriage, and providing a link to the blog on 90% of those answers. Although their advice is helpful, they don’t seem to want to participate in the community for any reason other than to promote their product.

* Someone brand new signing up specifically for help with their website, and linking straight to the project. If they want to ask for our time, they should at-least set up a private demo or provide a screenshot instead of a link, to make people feel a bit more confident about answering. It’s a particular no-no if the advice is something that could be answered by Google, or if it is a “design crit” for some website that seems spammy.

Obvious violations of the guidelines:

* Someone puts a link to their website in every reply.

* Someone PMs people they don’t know with unwanted links.

* Someone asks a “Do you need socks? Visit my sock website!” question.

charliecompany34's avatar

it’s the google alternative. ask what’s on your mind…

Nimis's avatar

Rich: Great answer(s).
Kind of hard for nubies though…if you’re going off of track record.
Are there instances where linking to your blog would be okay? What if someone asked?
Are you more vigilant about self-promotional questions or answers? Or same?

Charlie: Google alternative? Sorry, I’m a little slow.

gailcalled's avatar

More subtle ways of promoting self is #1) to ask a question and then answer it, often more than once as a way of orating; #2) to ask a trick question and withhold info and then spring facts on the collective later; #3) and have us do your homework.

@Nimis;Every question here involves ego, of course.

Nimis's avatar

Which do you weigh more heavily? Helpful advice or participation in the community?

Nimis's avatar

Gail: Good examples.

Though what if you have an answer, but not the answer?
And are just curious to know what other people think?

I don’t like #2 or #3 either, but is that self-promotional?

gailcalled's avatar

@Nimis: I am not sure. What do you think? #2 and #3 certainly draw attention to the questioner in a way that the guidelines don’t favor.

And helpful advice IS one way of participating in the community, no?

Nimis's avatar

Gail: Not sure either. They do draw attention…just not terribly favourable attention?
Isn’t self-promotion usually favourable? Or is that a silly assumption?
I guess some people like attention whichever way they can get it….

That’s what I thought. But Richard’s example makes it a bit more grey.

Although their advice is helpful, they don’t seem to want to participate in the community for any reason other than to promote their product.

richardhenry's avatar

If you’re answering a question, that should be okay. Just don’t only come here to answer questions where you could slip in your website/blog .etc, as in the case of the weddings blogger. ;)

ArizonaPancakes's avatar

Linking to one’s own webpage in order to increase traffic.

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