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Thread: Newbie help?

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We are getting a lot of new members pretty much asking the same questions: "how do I get a picture next to my posts?" and "why can't I go on chat?"
I thought it might be a good thing to include some info on this in the mail containing their password? At least a link to the "Help and FAQ" (although it should be easy enough to find) and to the threads already dealing with avatar and/or chat trouble on this forum.

Also a "Introduction for newbies"-thread, sticky (topped) and closed except for council members. There is already one, but it is 15 pages long! Noone reads that! (That is also the reason for it to be closed; if not it would soon fill up with responses and questions)

Obviously the "Help and FAQ" more than covers for this last idea, however what I had in mind is much shorter, just some basic guidelines: Stay on topic, don't post garbage, do's and don'ts regarding language, where to do what, etc.
Also to include Rednell's and AmariŽ's email addresses for avatar forging. (Unless they want their mailboxes full of viruses and spam it is probably not too wise to include them in the welcoming email)

Just some thoughts. Feel free to disect, choose and discard! Smile Smilie
I think that is a good idea. But you already knew that Grev. I
We do need a new Newbie-help thread. I never knew there was anything called Avatars befor I came here. Of course when I came here we couldn't have coustom avatars either, but we could not long after. Wink Smilie

I just reasently discovered how much useful info there really was in the Help and FAQ, and I have been here almost dayly for 1,5 years! Very Mad Smilie

Now we just have to make sure they read that post befor they start asking questions. Maybe a little quiz when they sign in. "You have to answer these questions befor you are allowed to enter. The answers can be found in the "First time posters" thread." With a mithril award for every correct answer. Ha Ha Ha Smilie Ok, maybe a little hard to do.

I'm too tired and strange to be of any use right now. Next post please!
Since the site is still under construction, all the fine details, such as topped threads and locked threads have not been written into the program yet. Taz has programmed this forum from scratch and moved the threads over from the old site, which used a different forum program (a pre-packaged one which caused numerous problems). That being said, I didn't find that topped and locked threads prevented people from starting new ones with the same questions and moderators were copying and moving posts daily. I realize that the Information for Newbies seems rather intimidating by it's sheer size, which is why Taz created the Help and FAQ's area so you could only access that information that you want at the time that you need it. I will add Pictures with a reference to Avatars, as I also did not know what an avatar when I was new. I will add Amarie's and my address for those who want help sizing their avatar.

Forum rules are also something that are difficult to enforce without putting people off. We try to be as gentle as possible with little reminders when things stray too far afield. We feel it is much more important to make sure that members respect each other and play fair, so to speak. Moderator Smilie

I think perhaps updating the Help file and seeking suggests as how to make it easier to find the information by using cross-references is still the best way to guide newbies through the Planet-Tolkien forums.

After having to write this all over again because when I was ready to save post, my logon had expired, :angry:, I would like to suggest to anyone with a long post that you highlight and copy before you save post or write up in notepad and copy and paste. Because you cannot get it back again by using the Back button.

You have offered good suggestions, GrevBukMcJern, and hopefully we can find some ways to make the newbie experience less intimidating. Super Scared Smilie
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That being said, I didn't find that topped and locked threads prevented people from starting new ones with the same questions and moderators were copying and moving posts daily.

That was not what I was trying to avoid. I think to some extent you'll have to live with that.. What I want is a thread that is the first they see when entering the forum that say: "READ THIS BEFORE POSTING ANYTHING!!!" In big, big letters with orange warning signs on each side. With a few control questions like: Is it the right forum for your post? Is there already a threas about this? Is it about problems with chat, avatars? then go here and so forth. This is very common in other forums, and shouldn't scare people away.

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I will add Pictures with a reference to Avatars, as I also did not know what an avatar when I was new. I will add Amarie's and my address for those who want help sizing their avatar
Good, good! Smile Smilie

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I think perhaps updating the Help file and seeking suggests as how to make it easier to find the information by using cross-references is still the best way to guide newbies through the Planet-Tolkien forums.
Yes! Thumbs Up Smilie But include a link to it in the welcoming email. Lots of the questions asked on the forum daily ARE already answered in the FAQ. But people doesn't read it... Sad Smilie

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I just reasently discovered how much useful info there really was in the Help and FAQ, and I have been here almost dayly for 1,5 years!
Beg pardon?? Only 1.5 years?? Pixie Smilie I have been here for 1.5 years.. Now my post count looks even more measily than before! Sad Smilie Elf Rolling Eyes Smilie
Hmm.. Apparently I became a member 13 April last year.. Only one year... I knew I had a couple of.. diffuse.. months back then, but really thought I had gotten my head back to my self by April... Hm! Oh, well!
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That was not what I was trying to avoid. I think to some extent you'll have to live with that.. What I want is a thread that is the first they see when entering the forum that say: "READ THIS BEFORE POSTING ANYTHING!!!" In big, big letters with orange warning signs on each side. With a few control questions like: Is it the right forum for your post? Is there already a threas about this? Is it about problems with chat, avatars? then go here and so forth. This is very common in other forums, and shouldn't scare people away.


I

That is a great idea. It should help newbies to find their way around. I must confess that I had some problems finding everything I needed around here first time I got to the new site. It's an amazing site though, and I can't wait until everything is finished and working properly! Thumbs Up Smilie
I like your idea about a new newbie thread. I was the one that started the old one, but I do have to agree, that it has gotten quite long. I will attempt to take the important bits from it and see what I can do to narrow it down some, so that it will be a bit less intimidating for a New Member to read it. My goal is to have it done by the beginning of next week, hopefully that will help out.

Mellie
That would be a great idea. I practicly a newbie myself found it embarasing to pelet people with questions all the time , and i here by want to apologize to all those people that suferd me. Elf Rolling Eyes Smilie