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Old 11-14-2004, 07:53 AM
C K Dexter Haven is offline
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Comment on new Forum Rules


The forum moderators have consolidated and clarified the Rules and Policies for Cafe Society. Whether you're a long-time member or a newcomer to the Cafe Society, please take the time to review them, in the thread New Forum Rules: PLEASE READ

If you want to comment on these rules, this is the place to do so.

We're sort of evolving -- especially the guidelines on when to use stickies -- and so we're glad to get thoughts and input. \


-- Dex and Uke,
Your friendly Cafe Society Moderators

Last edited by Ukulele Ike; 11-14-2004 at 09:49 AM.
  #2  
Old 11-14-2004, 08:51 AM
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I have a question about this portion:
Quote:
Obviously, if the material is new, some people will want to experience it for themselves without knowing the ending or the secrets or whatever. Remember that the TV show you see on the east coast will not be seen for three to four hours later on the west coast. And perhaps not for weeks or months in a different country.
Does this mean that if we're discussing a new episode of a given show, that we must put everything in spoiler boxes until it's been aired on the west coast, Hawaii, and Timbuktu?

I'd think that if a thread is appropriately labeled (The Apprentice--Nov. 14: The Big Surprise), then we should be able to discuss it openly once it has aired. The west coasters and TIVOers and everybody else can simply avoid the thread until they've seen it. What's the alternative? Having the entire discussion be in spoiler boxes?

Putting "Spoilers" in the thread title is not a good alternative, especially if the thread is started before the episode airs. This week's Apprentice thread had "Spoilers" in the thread title, but that was misleading, as there were no spoilers posted at all until the show aired.

So, when can we start discussing a new TV show openly?
  #3  
Old 11-14-2004, 09:18 AM
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The way we do it in Enterprise and LOST threads is

Put SPOILERS in the title.
If it's aired, talk about it. (Includes previews and promos)
If it's insider info about as yet unaired eps, box it.

Sure, there is a lot of other talk in the threads, and often some discussion before the ep airs. But spoiler boxing everything is annoying and cumbersome. If the word spoiler is in the title, and you haven't seen the ep yet, avoid the thread if you don't want to have any chance of spoilage.

It's worked well for several years this way.
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Old 11-14-2004, 09:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Bean
I have a question about this portion:
Does this mean that if we're discussing a new episode of a given show, that we must put everything in spoiler boxes until it's been aired on the west coast, Hawaii, and Timbuktu?

I'd think that if a thread is appropriately labeled (The Apprentice--Nov. 14: The Big Surprise), then we should be able to discuss it openly once it has aired. The west coasters and TIVOers and everybody else can simply avoid the thread until they've seen it.
I think that once it's aired on the East Coast, we can discuss the show without boxes. Those in other time zones just need to stay out of the thread till they have seen the show. I live on the East Coast, so I get to see stuff "first," as it were, but sometimes I tape and watch later, and I know not to read threads till after I've had a chance to watch that particular episode. It would be ridiculous to have two hour's worth of responses in spoiler boxes.

~~~~~~

I have another request about spoiler boxes. Occasionally someone will start a thread called, "What happened at the end of last night's 'CSI'? - Spoilers wanted!" and the OP will say something along the lines of: "My power went out and I missed the end of CSI. Who was the killer? How did they figure it out?"
and the response will be spoiler boxed. I don't think that's necessary.
  #5  
Old 11-14-2004, 12:15 PM
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It might also be prudent in the New Forum Rules thread to warn people about putting a spoiler box at the beginning of your OP, as the mouse-hover-popup-preview will reveal the contents of said spoiler. Most of us have learned this by now, but newbies might need that information.
  #6  
Old 11-14-2004, 12:31 PM
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It all looks good to me. I have only one question?

Smarmy Tucklas? What?

I mean, really, what the hell?
  #7  
Old 11-14-2004, 02:22 PM
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OPs might want to quote tag their spoiler boxes like so,
Quote:
SPOILER:
i have not tested it out yet, but it should work i think.
  #8  
Old 11-14-2004, 02:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Bean
Putting "Spoilers" in the thread title is not a good alternative, especially if the thread is started before the episode airs. This week's Apprentice thread had "Spoilers" in the thread title, but that was misleading, as there were no spoilers posted at all until the show aired.
I think it's perfectly reasonable to put "SPOILERS" in a thread title even before the show airs. The OP (and, generally, the regular participants to the weekly threads) knows that spoilers are going to be posted eventually, so it's best to alert everyone right away. Otherwise somebody's going to have to report the thread to the mods later (I know, I've had to do this with Lost threads), and that's just unnecessary work.

I agree though that people really shouldn't be complaining about spoilers (in the weekly TV show threads, anyway) if they're reading the threads before they've actually seen the show. I think the word "SPOILERS" in the title is warning enough in these cases, and open discussion should be okay right away.
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Old 11-14-2004, 09:33 PM
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In my opinion, if a thread is about a specific TV show/movie/book, then one should expect spoilers regardless of whether "spoilers" is in the title. I mean, what else is

Quote:
Lost 11/10 "Confidence Man"
going to be about other than the November 10th episode of "Lost", the one entitled "Confidence Man"? Why the need for a spoiler warning? Given that it is dedicated to that specific episode, is it not implied that the entire thread is a spoiler?

However, if the thread is more general, as in

Quote:
Things you didn't like about your favorite films
then spoiler tags are probably appropriate.
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Old 11-14-2004, 10:06 PM
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Maybe we'll try a re-wording, but I think the idea is pretty clear.

- People who have not seen (or read or heard or whatever) some show, and who don't want any of the drama spoiled for them in advance, have the right not to have such information thrust upon them unwanted.

- Therefore, it is only common courtesy for other posters to provide SOME SORT OF WARNING when they are revealing plot information. That warning could be in the thread title, using the date of a show ("West Wing for November 10") -- however, merely using the date may not be sufficient. After all, we could have a discussion about some political question raised by the issue, that did not involve spoiling the plot. Hence, the ideal is something like "West Wing for November 10 -- Warning: Spoilers".

- Sometimes, the thread title is about something else. If I'm posting in a thread about MACBETH for instance, and I comment that the new Clint Eastwood movie has a sleep-walking murderess washing her hands... Well, presumably a thread about MACBETH doesn't need spoilers, but that particular comment needs to be hidden.

So, I think we're talking common sense here. I can't imagine trying to legislate rules to describe the situations that might arise. We (the Moderators) are asking for simple courtesy: don't give away plot without either (a) warning people that you are going to do so, so that they can avoid the thread completely; or (b) hiding your coments behind [spoiler] tags so that people can avoid that comment.
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Old 11-14-2004, 10:41 PM
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From JohnT
Quote:
In my opinion, if a thread is about a specific TV show/movie/book, then one should expect spoilers regardless of whether "spoilers" is in the title.
But it's just so easy. Yeah, maybe people ought to know, but if it's a choice between one word in the thread title or a bunch of those god awful spoiler boxes, I'll take the word in the title anyday. It's one word! Just stick it in the title, it's not a big deal.
  #12  
Old 11-15-2004, 07:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven
Note that within a thread, anything that might be a spoiler from some other work should be hidden with spoiler tags, even if the thread title says "Spoilers." Someone seeing thread about the movie PSYCHO, even with a Spoiler Warning, might be upset to find information about the surprise twist in this week's West Wing, for example. So, be especially sensitive if you are revealing plot information about one work in a thread devoted to a different work.
And it should show what the spoiler is for outside of the box. In a thread about a specific work, one should, even in spoiler boxes, only expect spoilers for that work! If it is for something else, please say so outside the box. In threads not about a specific work, all boxes should be labeled.
  #13  
Old 11-15-2004, 08:27 AM
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Quote:
In threads not about a specific work, all boxes should be labeled.
Well-taken point, mkl12, we'll add that.

Also, obviously, thread titles need to be specific. "What a great movie!" isn't helpful.

People who DON'T want to have something spoiled, should try to avoid any thread on that topic, that's pretty clear too. So, if both the spoilers and the spoilees exercise some common sense, I think we'll get along fine.
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Old 11-15-2004, 10:12 AM
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I wasn't really "complaining" from a thread starters POV, (as in "those 8 letters are too much to type!"), but from a readers POV. If the thread is about a specific movie, TV show, etc, then one should expect spoilers as a matter of course.

Imho, of couse.
  #15  
Old 11-15-2004, 11:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkl12
And it should show what the spoiler is for outside of the box. In a thread about a specific work, one should, even in spoiler boxes, only expect spoilers for that work! If it is for something else, please say so outside the box. In threads not about a specific work, all boxes should be labeled.
There's the occasional exception to this. A thread called, "What Movies have the bad guy winning at the end?" doesn't necessarily need spoiler boxes for each post in it, does it?

I'm not really sure how to handle such threads; I love reading them for discussion of movies I'm familiar with, but am always worried I'll get spoiled for some movie I've not yet seen. I usually stay away from them, reluctantly.

Any ideas on how folks should post in them?

Daniel
  #16  
Old 11-15-2004, 11:34 AM
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So, am I in dutch for posting a chorus and verse of "Ma! He's Makin' Eyes at Me!" (1921)?
  #17  
Old 11-15-2004, 02:03 PM
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No, Eve, you ain't Dutch. Not even Belgian. A verse, a chorus, that's all within "fair usage."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Left Hand of Darkness
A thread called, "What Movies have the bad guy winning at the end?" doesn't necessarily need spoiler boxes for each post in it, does it?
Hah! Ample justification for the Moderators saying, we ain't gonna try to write a legal code that covers all cases. We'd never manage it.

Common sense tells me that a thread like that is potentially going to have spoilers, although I won't know for which movies. So, if I'm going to read that thread, I'm going to have to set myself up for potential spoilers. The thread title itself makes it clear.

So, I repeat my main argument: most of this is common sense (on the part of both those who post spoilers and on the part of those who don't want to see spoilers) and common courtesy.
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Old 11-15-2004, 03:33 PM
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Tch, Eve, post the entirety of that and you should be safe:
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Therefore, the U. S. copyright in any work published or copyrighted prior to January 1, 1923, has expired by operation of law, and the work has permanently fallen into the public domain in the United States
Did I win?
  #19  
Old 11-15-2004, 03:53 PM
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I think Eve was asking because that movie has lapsed into public domain. (at least I think it has)
Posting the full lyrics of "Campdown Races" (written in 1850) is definitely legal, but we don't want the mods to have to determine which lyrics are in the public domain.

For TV shows, posting the US air date is definitely encouraged. Putting "spoilers" in the title even before the show airs sounds like good courtesy (even tho I assume there will be spoilers in that case - I could go either way on this)


Brian
  #20  
Old 11-15-2004, 04:20 PM
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Quote:
Posting the full lyrics of "Campdown Races" (written in 1850) is definitely legal, but we don't want the mods to have to determine which lyrics are in the public domain.
Correct. The mods have neither the time, nor the energy, nor the desire to check up the exact legal status of anything. If you MUST post an entire song, and if you're sure that it's in public domain, then:

(1) Email us the mods to tell us what you've done and why you're ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY, SURE and will swear an oath on all you hold sacred, that it's in public domain. Evidence wouldn't hurt.

(2) Make some sort of similar comment in your post. We don't others to be reporting it, or (worse) thinking "X posted the whole song, so can I."

Frankly, most of the time, you're quoting from a song or poem to make a point or get the gist of the damn thing. I don't need to copy the whole of MACBETH if I just want to say, "Tomorrow, and tomorrrow, and tomorrow."
  #21  
Old 11-16-2004, 01:57 AM
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When does criticism of a poem or other work become an insult to the author?

Obviously
Quote:
Smarmy Tucklas is further proof of what an inbred cretin Maximillian Farfel really is.
is an insult to the author.

But if SDMB member Maximillian Farfel posts his original work [i]Smarmy Tucklas[/b] and asks for our input, how far are we allowed to go? If other posters aren't allowed to tell us what they really think of our work, especially when they think it's a horrible piece of dung, what's the point of posting it?
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  #22  
Old 11-16-2004, 08:20 PM
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SPOILER:


Ganoush?

In the library with a candle stick?

He had it coming!



  #23  
Old 11-16-2004, 11:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnT
If the thread is about a specific movie, TV show, etc, then one should expect spoilers as a matter of course.
Yes. Otherwise, frank discussion of the show is impossible. If you don't want to know anything about a program don't look at its threads OR previews on TV OR reviews in the paper.
  #24  
Old 11-17-2004, 12:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven
Correct. The mods have neither the time, nor the energy, nor the desire to check up the exact legal status of anything. If you MUST post an entire song, and if you're sure that it's in public domain, then:
How about simply including a link that demonstrates the quote is, indeed, in the public domain? No link available? Tough noogies, you can't quote the lyrics in whole.
Quote:
If you start a thread and get no (or few) responses, you may re-post to it once (ONCE!) to put it back on the front page. After that, let nature take its course. You may not continue to resurrect your own threads, hoping for a response THIS time.
I hope this isn't a blanket indictment, because I've been commiting this exact infraction -- verbatim -- over in MPSIMS for the last couple months, and could conceivably do it in Cafe Society as well. I, of course, view this as providing a service to the SDMB, because I'm so damn arrogant. But in all seriousness, I think threads like that can be solid contributions to the board. Just sayin'.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel
There's the occasional exception to this. A thread called, "What Movies have the bad guy winning at the end?" doesn't necessarily need spoiler boxes for each post in it, does it?
I've been burned by those threads as well, and in your specific example, it seems impossible to effectively spoiler it, because you have to identify the movie outside the spoiler box, and regardless of how the bad guy wins, you know that they win.

One suggestion would be to set a time limit in the OP. Such as "What Movies have the bad guy winning at the end? Nothing more recent than 2002, please!"

A better suggestion might be to not include the movie name outside the spoiler, but rather an obvious giveaway that identifies the movie if you've seen it, but which would be meaningless if you haven't. I'll try an actual example, in response to the "bad guy wins" question. Hmmm, I can't think of a good "bad guy wins" example, as Hollywood has issues with that, but I can think of plenty of "hero loses" movies:

In the movie with stylized heroin use and losing weight to appear on The Tappy Tibbons Show:
SPOILER:
In Requiem for a Dream, all the main characters suffer horribly at the end. The final "redemption" scene was annoying tacked-on Hollywood tripe, as was the final phone conversation, but otherwise a nicely dark and depressing tale of heroin's triumph over the human spirit.

That would do it. If you don't recognize the summary outside the spoiler, you know you haven't seen the movie, and nothing has been spoiled about it for you. But if you have seen it, you most likely recognize the summary, and can happily read the spoiler commentary with impunity. It requires a bit of creativity for the poster, but I consider that a good thing. I just thought of a "bad guy wins", one of my favorites that nobody around here seems to have seen.

Animated children's tales concealing communist propaganda, much torture ensues:
SPOILER:
In ClosetLand, Alan Rickman accuses Madeleine Stowe of coding communist propaganda inside her children's books. She finally breaks after relentless torture, and willingly drinks the poison at the end. Excellent performances by both actors; you have to love movies that only have two people and one set.

I agree that it would be annoying to carry on a full discussion inside spoiler boxes, but it's an idea at least. I also recognize the impulse to read spoiled text can be strong. Who likes to feel left out? But still, it is an idea.
  #25  
Old 11-17-2004, 08:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellis Dee
Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven
If you start a thread and get no (or few) responses, you may re-post to it once (ONCE!) to put it back on the front page. After that, let nature take its course. You may not continue to resurrect your own threads, hoping for a response THIS time.
I hope this isn't a blanket indictment, because I've been commiting this exact infraction -- verbatim -- over in MPSIMS for the last couple months, and could conceivably do it in Cafe Society as well. I, of course, view this as providing a service to the SDMB, because I'm so damn arrogant. But in all seriousness, I think threads like that can be solid contributions to the board. Just sayin'.
Look, if NO ONE ELSE IS POSTING TO THE THREAD, then it doesn't need to be a thread on a message board. If you're trying to provide information that gets updated from time to time, get yourself a webiste and provide a link in a thread. We're not here to be an alternative to you getting your own website.

And, the more common case is that someone asks a question or opens a discussion and no one responds. That means that no one is interested. You get two shots (one when you open the thread, and one when you bump it), and if folks still aren't interested, don't pull it up to the front page. That's the rule in Cafe Society. MPSIMS may have different views.

* * * * * * * *

Ellis, Your comment on the hypothetical thread, "What are some movies where the bad guys win?" is well-taken. A thread like that, you're stuck, and your thought is a good one. Thus, I repeat myself (like history): use common sense and courtesy. If you're typing something that would spoil a plot for someone, figure the best way to use spoiler tags (or whatever) so as not to do that.

I can't even begin to imagine us setting more detailed guidelines than those.
  #26  
Old 11-17-2004, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
For TV shows, posting the US air date is definitely encouraged.
Is this necessarily sufficient? Would a Timbuktuian Doper necessarily know that the Nov. 11 episode of <some show> is the one that'll be showing on TimBukTV three weeks from now? The title of the episode would help, of course, but that might not be something noticed by many viewers.
  #27  
Old 11-17-2004, 03:49 PM
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Kitemaking & Kitemakers


In the Cafe Society Board, I see that Art is one of the permitted subjects. That being so, may I post information on what's going on in Kitemaking and Kiteflying?

Believe it or not, modern kitemaking is quite artistic and quite beautiful. Kitemakers (myself included), put a lot of time and effort into making what is essentially flying (and fun) artwork. Did you know that there are many kitemakers conferences held not only around the country, but in many places around the world as well? (My own local event is the annual Fort Worden Kitemakers Conference), which is held at Fort Worden State Park in the town of Port Townsend, Washington. There we meet other Kitemakers from literally all over the world.

I wouldn't want to post this in your Mundane and Pointless Stuff Board, as this subject appeals to so many people and it's anything but mundane and pointless.

In the Cafe Society Board people could talk about kites they've made or flown, or just saw flying in their local park. People who get interested in Kitemaking can get connected with people who could teach them.

I hope I didn't talk your ear off, but kites,kiteflying (and kitemaking) are such a nice hobby or pasttime, and it's something positive (and not preachy or political) that most people would find interesting. Well, I gotta' get back to my sewing machine--there's a nice boxkite itching to go flying!!
  #28  
Old 11-17-2004, 08:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven
Ellis, Your comment on the hypothetical thread, "What are some movies where the bad guys win?" is well-taken. A thread like that, you're stuck, and your thought is a good one. Thus, I repeat myself (like history): use common sense and courtesy. If you're typing something that would spoil a plot for someone, figure the best way to use spoiler tags (or whatever) so as not to do that.

I can't even begin to imagine us setting more detailed guidelines than those.
No, I think it would be a terrible idea to try to construct more detailed guidelines. I wasn't actually looking for official feedback on this point, I was really just trying to offer friendly suggestions to my fellow posters on how to deal with something like that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven
Look, if NO ONE ELSE IS POSTING TO THE THREAD, then it doesn't need to be a thread on a message board. If you're trying to provide information that gets updated from time to time, get yourself a webiste and provide a link in a thread. We're not here to be an alternative to you getting your own website.
You seem a little pissed, so I'm putting my response to this in the Pit.
  #29  
Old 11-18-2004, 08:02 AM
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It seems to me that I am in the minority but I don't mind spoiler boxes. I would rather have too many than too few. I don't see what the big deal is about putting your cursor over the box. I say when in doubt, box it.
  #30  
Old 11-27-2004, 09:13 AM
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I, for one, welcome our new Cafe Society Guildelines!

II specifically like the "it's okay to resurrect an old thread" green light. I'm thinking here specifically of a thread we had over a year ago about the novel The Crimson Petal and the White, where we had a lively discussion about the fate of one of the characters. I would love it if someone finally got around to reading that book, found the thread, and wanted to add his or her interpretation of what happened. In this kind of case, I think resurrecting the old thread is exactly what is called for.

/ass-kissing
  #31  
Old 11-27-2004, 10:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twickster
I, for one, welcome our new Cafe Society Guildelines!

II specifically like the "it's okay to resurrect an old thread" green light. I'm thinking here specifically of a thread we had over a year ago about the novel The Crimson Petal and the White, where we had a lively discussion about the fate of one of the characters. I would love it if someone finally got around to reading that book, found the thread, and wanted to add his or her interpretation of what happened. In this kind of case, I think resurrecting the old thread is exactly what is called for.

/ass-kissing
I'm reading that book right now. Maybe when I finish it (it's going a little slow - I'm too busy to devote a lot of time to it), I'll look for the thread and breathe a little life into it.
  #32  
Old 11-27-2004, 11:35 AM
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Speaking for Trek Dopers, I welcome anyone who wishes to join in our discussions, regardless of how late. Subject to mod approval, of course.

  #33  
Old 11-27-2004, 11:43 AM
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BTW, did you guys unstick this thread on purpose? Just wondering.
  #34  
Old 11-27-2004, 03:23 PM
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Yeah, it had been up for a while and there weren't any more comments, so I unstuck it. I can re-dis-unstick it for a bit.
  #35  
Old 12-09-2004, 03:12 PM
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I have a question about the "Use descriptive thread titles" rule: What about the mouseover thread previews? In my case, I admittedly wrote a non-descriptive thread title, but the mouseover preview made it clear what the topic was. So if you'd like us to write thread titles that make it clear what the topic of the thread is without using the mouseover thread preview, it might be helpful to make a note of that in the Forum Rules.
  #36  
Old 12-10-2004, 06:45 AM
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I thought that was obvious, but thanks, and I'll amend.
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