Mundane Pointless Loser

I’ve heard a theory that MPSIMS has a strange corollary concerning the time and thought put into a thread versus response. As in: “those topic starters you research and put lots of effort into typically result in little to no replys”. On the reverse, “new threads that one just pulls out of their rectum (as it were) can go pages and pages long with happy Doper responses”. So I decided to try and post a new thread in several different mindsets. I posted with lots of thought and footnotes. I posted where there was almost no reason to write anything down at all. I have posted somewhere in between the two.

Here is what I have discerned:

I am the biggest loser on the boards. Seriously - I must average around no responses for every thread I start… no matter what the subject I write on… no one cares. I have turned into my name. I AM nothing.

Don’t misunderstand me, thankfully I actually have something of a life outside this MB so I am not suicidal about this discovery or anything. In fact maybe I can help others. Think about it this way: the next time a thread of yours falls flat on its face, remember me and know that its not all that bad! Maybe you kill threads (got a few kills on my belt)…maybe you’ve never had a thread of yours go longer than one page (I’ve never ever even come anywhere close to a second page)…take heart my friend, because compared to me you are Shakespeare!

If I can make even one persons day brighter with my fabulous futility, then perhaps it isn’t all bad to be the SDMB “Official Loser”.

Not much to say, although I can be a very effective thread killer, so I feel at least part of your pain.

My main reason for replying though, is to make sure AT LEAST ONE PERSON responds to your OP. :slight_smile:

Here, you can have 2 replies!

More seriously, I just don’t start threads unless desperate. Easier for everyone. :slight_smile:


3 replies. And so this isn’t a post-count party, I’ll tell you a secret. I don’t mind if some of my threads, especially my Cafe Society threads, get few responses if they get lots of views. If that’s the case, I feel like most people walked away from the [item in question] with the same opinion I did or at least close. If they disagreed or had other thoughts, they’d post.

Oh sure. The threadkiller is your response. That should help.

I don’t know the OP, though. Sometimes you say there is to say on a certain topic, and there’s nothing anyone can add.

My tips for starting successful MPSIMS threads, of which I like to think I’ve made a few:

  1. Make the title interesting.
  2. Be general/vague.
  3. Keep it short.
  4. Make the readers feel included.
  5. Don’t freakin’ whine.

More details:

Number 1 is mostly self-explanatory. Something you should keep in mind, though, is that “interesting” means that the title tells part of the story but leaves enough to the imagination that a lot of people will read the thread to fill in the blanks. For example, “Mundane Pointless Loser” is an excellent thread title. It’s pretty clear what the thread’s about–badmouthing someone, and we all love that–but it leaves enough to the imagination that we all want to click on it and find out who the MPL is: The poster? Their SO? Their MIL? Their friend? Another Doper?

2, 3, 4: Once you’ve grabbed Doper eyes with your title, make sure you don’t shut people out by specifying things. Don’t ever imply or express a desired limit to the responses–a hijacked thread is better than an ignored thread. Try to talk in general enough terms that everybody will feel like their story is relevant and they should share it. A little ambiguity is good too, because people will make posts talking about how they don’t understand it, then you can explain it, then the whole board will chime in on whether or not they understood it the whole time; and now that you’ve got everyone reading, you can redirect them to the thread topic. Don’t be too long-winded: the more specifics you include, the more people are going to feel excluded from the scope of the thread and choose not to respond.

  1. Would you like some cheese to go with that whine?

I think I’m at about a 30% fatality rate for each thread I visit.

I have no tips, either.

But I eventually realized that this thread title was not “Mundane Laser Pointers”, after which I merrily dived right in. :slight_smile:

You’ve been around much longer than I have and over half your threads are before my time, but I can give you a little feedback on why I personally haven’t replied to many of them, if any. In addition to the pointers given by fetus there needs to be one about being a topic others share some interest, knowledge, curiosity, or some level of involvement with. Looking back over the threads you’ve started, I can’t see any where I have any of those ingredients.

That’s not a condemnation or a criticism. It’s just an explanation for why I haven’t contributed to your threads. You’re not alone by any means. I suspect that well over 60% of the threads I see even spark my curiosity. If the topic is way off the scale of my interests or knowledge, I just pass on by.

Many of my own threads suffer from this same thing. I’ll get 0-3 replies on a good percentage of threads I start. Now and then one will take off because the topic is either silly, weird, fun, or tantalizing or for some reason I have yet to be able to predict. I love it when one “goes wild” and winds up with over 100 posts, but there have been precious few of them.

I think the attitude you express in the OP is the way to go. It’s just the way the mop flops at times. Your ego doesn’t have to get involved, and having other things to take up some of your time makes it less painful when the notion you might be being rejected arises.

FWIW, I have contemplated raising this same issue myself, which explains why I have probably said more than you really wanted to hear.

From another Tennessee boy. Nothing wrong with where you’re from! :smiley:

There should be a “don’t” between “see” and “even” if you want that sentence to make sense.

What you have to do is taper the edges of the 2x4 down and then sand it well so there will be no splinters.

Ooops, sorry, didn’t mean to post to this thread.

I’d say you may have found the universal post, regardless of topic. It’s just specific enough to make people think and allow them to find the connection. Until you posted this proviso I was all in favor of it.

Now I wonder which thread you thought you were in. I might even search for it. Then again, I may just copy/paste your reply in some random threads…

I, for one, was picturing a LART.

There is a bit of vanity being here isn’t there? I don’t start many threads, mostly because I enjoy figuring out what everyone else is trying to figure out also. If it is any consolation, I do not yet eliminate threads by certain people, although some posters certainly draw me in (Sampiro, I’m looking at you!).

Trying to figure out why a thread works and why a thread doesn’t is like trying to define pornography.