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Wondering about the best way to encourage people to "accept" answers to their questions...?

As on the old SCN, people just don't seem to acknowledge the correct answers to their questions as much as they should. We should use the new platform as an opportunity to change this behaviour (and others!). What's the best way to do that? Any ideas?

I'd like to suggest that if moderators see what they think are correct answers to questions, they should leave a private comment (visible only to poster and other moderators) suggesting that the original poster accepts the answer. Would that work? Yes, I know, more work for moderators. But maybe if people get the message early, this won't be needed for long?

Other ideas?

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98 Comments

  • Oct 18, 2016 at 12:15 PM

    A good question, but really far down my list of concerns at this time.

    Cheers, Mike

  • Oct 18, 2016 at 12:55 PM

    I like the idea. But people tend to not get, that it's a private comment. And reply as answer.

    Also some correct answers are comments on the question or other answers. So it's hard to accept them. You need to re-sort the whole thing.

    And you can't convert answers to sub-comments, just to comment on other answers or the question. So this can get kind of messy.

    But I think I moved away from your question, sorry. ^^

    I have un-accepted some answers and accepted others, if there was a better one. But on the whole I stay away from this, because I'm just a help, not a real M. :)

    .

    It does not help, that the "Accept" button is so small under the answers. Maybe it needs some (green) color and a more visible place, so that people actually find it. And there is just one place (the RoE) where I found an explanation what it's for.

    The docu for "How to create a question" does not explain how to vote or close one.

  • Oct 18, 2016 at 01:43 PM

    It would be my preference that the number of questions allowed to be open at any one time be limited to say 3. If that was stated right up front, NOW, while people are learning a new system, it would greatly help closing questions and get community members to manage their own questions by setting the expectation right up front. We asked for something like this several times in the old SCN.

    It won't help for those people that simply create an account for one question and then never come back again. But those ghost accounts should be inactivated after a year and any open questions posted by the account locked.

    We also asked for an automatic locking of questions that had no activity for xx number of months. I think 6 months is a resonable number. A status of "Locked due to inactivity" could be shown on the posting. Then let moderators unlock them if some one asks to have one unlocked so they can update it.

    I don't mind sending a direct message once in a while but under certain tags, the moderators are often also one of the main SME's of the tag. It kind of gets back to requesting that points be awarded in the old SCN and mods are hesitant to do that.

    Unclosed questions was a major compliant in SCN. I'm really surprised it wasn't addressed in this rollout.

    Some of these are pretty common sense things that we have to address in all our production SAP systems. Inactivating users after a certain period of time, archiving documents, locking certain documents at specified times or with specified statuses.

    I'm not sure why there seems to be resistance to apply some of these "Best practices" to a forum like this.

    Craig

    • Oct 18, 2016 at 02:02 PM

      I'm kind of glad that the feature to have only 10 open questions isn't implemented at the moment. People have enough trouble getting stuff done already and a lot are overwhelmed with the new platform, how everything works, where everything is. What is missing, what is just kaputt.

      Users and moderators both have problems. So more features that could be a cause for questions (they couldn't even create or maybe leave "Using SAP.com" out of it). As long as the search does not work and you don't have an easier way finding your content, we'll see a lot of open and dublicate questions, I'm afraid. :/

      And as I mentioned above... I haven't yet found documentation on how to close a thread correctly (there is just one mention about the accept button and that's in the RoE). Jürgen could write another blog, but who would find it at the moment?

      • Oct 18, 2016 at 07:20 PM

        Personally, I think 10 open questions is way to high.

        IMHO if you need to have more than 5 questions open at a time you have some serious issues in your project!

        Maybe it can be limited to a community. I.e no more than 5 in PLM. No more than 5 in SD, no more than 5 in HANA.. etc.. etc...

        I just can't imagine needing to have 10 questions open.

        Yes, I would also exclude from the quota a tag like "Using SAP.COM". And there might be some others that could be excluded from the restricition as well.

        Craig

        • Oct 19, 2016 at 05:36 AM

          "IMHO if you need to have more than 5 questions open at a time you have some serious issues in your project!"

          Does it work in the opposite direction? I wonder what these 189/299 questions tagged "Using SAP.com" indicate for the SAP Community (former SCN) site project...

          • Oct 19, 2016 at 01:35 PM

            Well technically you'd have to compare that value to the number of open questions from end-users of a new SAP project, of which normally can be very high. Not design and debugging questions that are normally asked and answered well before rollout.

            But in my 25 years of project work, I find about 80% are related to master-data conversion, end-user training, user inexperience on the system and avoidance of learning the system.

            Actual technical issues and issues with design functionality are usually pretty low.

            But your point is well taken!!! They have a LOT of open questions on basic design and functionality.

        • Oct 20, 2016 at 12:15 PM

          5 is too much.

          I think 3 is enough.

          Another way is let the users decide which answer they think is best. If i see a question and someone has answered it, instead of reiterating the solution I usually just like the post I think was best.

      • Oct 24, 2016 at 08:45 PM

        Is there a tool in this current incarnation of SCN to tell what open questions you have. And would it be x number of questions total or per space?

        Matt

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 05:19 PM

      Since the only way to report SCN bugs is to post a question and no one is responding to those questions (except for Steffi who should be given some medal already :) ), limiting number of open questions right now would not be reasonable. E.g. I have 6 open questions already. Normally I have 0-1.

      From my experience, people use the functionality when it's simple. But in this website Q&A has been made more complex for no good reason. There is already a great deal of confusion between comments and answers. The "accept" button is tiny, I really had to look for it. On top of that I'm finding that accepting an answer does not close the thread, as "correct answer" did before. Now I also have to locate the tiny Actions button and then choose Close from there. And there is no incentive whatsoever. Expect even more abandoned questions than before. It's a natural consequence of the UX choices not made by us.

      • Oct 20, 2016 at 05:38 PM

        It sounds strange, but I really have fun answering those questions. It's kind of relaxing. ^^

      • Jan 04, 2017 at 11:54 AM

        You mean to say there is an 'Accept' button ????

        • Jan 04, 2017 at 12:17 PM

          Yes. It's under the answers to each questions. In the menu with the rest of the options for each answer.

    • Oct 24, 2016 at 02:46 PM

      Wait, there is a "close thread"?

      I missed it, honestly.

      And honestly, limit to 3 or 5 questions is pretty...lame.

      It happen to me to have 4 open questions in the past, due really rare and specific scenario where none seemed to be able to answer.

      I do not believe in hard limits per se: we need to explain and educate the users (and ourselves) instead.

      Only in extreme rare cases the Moderators should be able to "punish"

      • Oct 24, 2016 at 03:43 PM

        Simone, not only there is now an additional step to "close" (I had no idea either until I saw "Closed" next to some threads and decided to investigate) but dig this - closed threads are still displayed in "Unanswered questions".

        But overall I'm with Mike - it's way low on the priority list right now. We need a working site first, then we can pester others about their open questions. Oh, and Juergen would need to write a new version of his blog too! :) (I wish I could @mention him, arrrgh)

        • Oct 24, 2016 at 03:48 PM

          IMO "closed" does not mean "has an answer", so there is a distinction. Because if there were an answer, it would be accepted. I don't know why people close their questions though. It's a bit easier to see in the overview, ok. But if something is marked answered, it's easier to find in the thread itself (always on top).

          • Oct 24, 2016 at 04:34 PM

            I close questions to indicate, that I don't expect and I won't check for answers or comments - it can be because I accepted an answer already or because I am not willing to hunt every day for updates I am not interested in anymore.

  • Oct 18, 2016 at 05:09 PM

    Maybe we should award karma points to the person which asked the question if they acknowledge an answer...

    SCNR

    Mark

    • Oct 24, 2016 at 02:47 PM

      And if none is able to answer or just write rubbish trying to get some kind of acknowledge?

      • Oct 25, 2016 at 06:23 AM

        Hi Simone,

        My post wasn't meant all that serious... (SCNR = Sorry Could Not Resist)
        To give karma points to the one who got help just because he acknowledge a correct answer with a click of button probably isn't a good solution....
        But the other way around could work - reduce karma point if one doesn't respond (acknowledge answer - comment on the proposed solution what this doesn't work) to the answers given.

        Not easy - because as SAP Mentor Veselina Peykova pointed out - it is hard to determine a good time frame for how fast one should react to such answers (people get sick / take long vacations) - and then there are all the nonsense answers one would need to react to as well....


        • Nov 09, 2016 at 04:50 PM

          How about negative Karma points for not closing a question in 10 days. If you retroactively close it, you will get you Karma points back.

  • Oct 18, 2016 at 05:28 PM

    Hello Steve,

    A smilar idea lies in the 'out of scope' area, in the idea place...with 56 votes :)

    https://ideas.sap.com/D9013#CDB11E4F9

    I like the idea of limiting the number of open threads. If a user has to close atleast one open thread to create a new one, then there a fair chance the user will close all his long pending open questions in one shot.

    • Oct 18, 2016 at 07:14 PM

      That link doesn't open for me. Not found.

      Yes..I thought we had asked for that a while back. I would think 56 votes was pretty significant.

      Craig

    • Oct 18, 2016 at 08:16 PM

      There you go: https://ideas.sap.com/D9013

      If we get an open-questions-limit, some kind of alert or info popup should be in the same implementation package. But I would love something like this either way.

      • Oct 19, 2016 at 01:45 PM

        LOL That was an idea that Aaron merged in with mine years ago! I even provided an example pop-up message that could be displayed at the time you logon each day, or put into your activity stream.

        This is another perfect example of ideas that were proposed years ago. And it was simply marked as "For Future Consideration". Was it? Really? Did they really go back during the design of this new platform and reveiw all those "For Future Consideration" items?

        My guess is no or that they were just looked at and quickly discarded. The community HAS given them LOTS of feedback over the years.

        Craig

        • Oct 19, 2016 at 02:19 PM

          Yeah...about that...
          So a couple months before launch, I (along with other team members) was asked to go in and review the older Idea Place suggestions and close them out. I was happy for the assignment because I figured it was another way for me to get a sense of what the community wanted and to do some much-needed personal interaction (keeping in mind that I joined the community team in May).
          But when I went into Idea Place, I discovered that just about all of the items were years old. Which meant that in many cases, I found myself responding with, "This is a great idea...for SCN. But we're getting ready to launch a new platform in which this suggestion won't apply. P.S. Sorry it took 3 years for a response."

          It was an awkward position, to say the least.

          To get to your original point, however: While I completely understand your cynicism (and I can hardly blame you for thinking that we just discarded everything), I can tell you that we did make note of any ideas that could be relevant to the new community. So "for future consideration" really did mean "for future consideration." Anything that couldn't work was changed to "out of scope/not planned by SAP."
          All that being said, I should also make it clear that "for future consideration" doesn't mean "we'll get right on that." We've had to prioritize features -- and there is no shortage of feedback when it comes to those. We made a list of everything from open beta (http://go.sap.com/community/about/beta-feedback.html) and we also are tracking everything in Using SAP.com and Idea Place. That should give you some sense of what we're sifting through. And we're picking out the stuff that is in most demand. So e-mail notifications and better filtering options top the list.

          Beyond that, I'll simply say that we'll do a better job of staying on top of Idea Place this time. I and other team members check it several times a day. I hope you've noticed that. In the end, we might respond with a "sorry, that's not gonna happen," and nobody likes to hear that. But it's still better than making someone wait 3 years for any response at all.

          • Oct 19, 2016 at 03:17 PM

            As I said Jerry, I don't mean any disrespect to the hours you folks put in.

            But discussions around how to close out questions and make users more accountable has been discussed ad nasusem (I probably spelt that wrong but not sure since there is no spell check here!) for years.

            So maybe while the actual details of how to do something might not apply because it's a different system, it doesn't change the basic underlying principle or concept of finding a way to make users more accountable for their questions. But yet here we are.. discussing it again. With no tools or functionality added to even attempt something new. Just let the moderators deal with it.

            And unfortunatly, right now all the effort is being focused on bugs. Not improving basic functionality. And that is very disappointing. While some bugs are inevitable, the numbers and types being experenced here seem very high.

            Like what is suddenly going on with line and paragraph spacing today!

            And does anyone else have problems in the editor with carriage returns? When I hit <Return> nothing appears to happen. I have to start typing first before the cursor moves to the next line. Very confusing. I now tend to type and then when I'm all done I go back and enter cariage returns for my new paragraphs. Not a normal way to work.

            Craig

            • Oct 19, 2016 at 09:53 PM

              And no disrespect taken. You raised very valid points.

              I also didn't mean to suggest that new features won't occur while bugs are being addressed. Tagging, notification, and filtering feature all top the wish list. But, as with beta, the sprint cycles are every couple weeks, so it will be a few weeks before anything is available. They're coming though.

              Also...I've been experiencing that issue with returns periodically myself. May I ask what browser you are using? I can report as a bug, but I'm trying to find out if it occurs regardless of browser.

          • Oct 19, 2016 at 03:36 PM

            And not to beat on a dead horse, but you said you were asked to review and close the idea place a few months before go launch? A few months ago we were already in Beta weren't we? That's a bit late to be reviewing them which tells me that our feedback over the years was not taken into consideration during the early design phase.

            Shouldn't these suggestions have been reviewed very early in the design and used as a means to develop the initial user requirements?

            Craig

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 04:06 AM

      58 votes now :) I like the idea that people have more guided closure to discussion threads - the feature would need ample testing before being put into productive use.

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 08:05 AM

      I've already voted for that, apparently!

  • avatar image
    Former Member
    Oct 18, 2016 at 09:06 PM

    Steve,

    In the old SCN, when I saw a question in my space with an answer that I knew to be correct that had not yet been marked as such by the OP, I would mark it correct myself, just get the question to show as Answered. No one ever complained about it, and I would not have to look at it anymore. Now here in the new site, I will be glad just to see a question.

    • Oct 18, 2016 at 10:58 PM

      Gretchen

      Quite a few moderators do that. I suspect security moderators would do that periodically as well. The challenge is that Moderators do work differently as well - some are keen to do that (as well as unmark point chases) whilst other's won't.

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 08:08 AM

      If people are OK with moderators doing this directly, that's fine. It happened once to me inappropriately - the question wasn't answered to my satisfaction - and I saw somebody else saying the same thing. Maybe it was just some over enthusiasm in the early days of the new site? I can live with that. At least I noticed the notification that it had happened, and I could unmark it.

      In that case, pretend I never asked this question... :-)

  • Oct 19, 2016 at 01:07 AM

    I don't wish to discourage you, but basically you are asking how to turn people from their natural state of lazy, selfish and ignorant creatures into respectable members of the society.

    I wish I knew the answer, but I don't.

    Yes, they could set some limit of maximum open questions, but this won't guarantee that the member would not choose a random answer - just to close the thread.

    Awarding Karma points, a single point, will probably make things worse - like with the Beta feedback mission.

    Sending a polite message is a nice idea, it could help the few decent people, who are not sure which option is best, or are struggling with the platform (the Accept button is not as obvious as Mark Correct in the old one). For the second group of people, a variation of How to close a discussion and why could also be useful.

    What might help, especially now - when there are even less people trying to help with business-related questions in the new platform, is to send a clear message, that you don't help selfish irresponsible people, who take, without giving back at least a little bit.

    In the old platform, when I saw a member with 30-40 open threads, not a single one marked as answered/assumed answered, or replies set as helpful, or providing feedback how the issue was solved in the end, or systematically selecting as correct replies, which I am sure, are wrong - I could chose not to bother.

    With the new platform this is not easy - the information for questions in the profile is presented badly, which means, that in a few months, you will have to open each question one by one - to see if it was closed, how and why.

    If it takes me 20 minutes to check if it makes sense to help somebody - I wouldn't do that, instead I will reply only based on my perceived question quality (which means not participating in 75% of the cases).

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 06:50 AM

      Hi Veselina,

      My suggestion about the karma points wasn't meant really serious.

      But your first sentence made me think: If people do not behave nicely (not closing questions even though answers have been provided) the are accumulating bad karma - aren't they ;-) .

      So maybe it could be an option to do it the other way around: Automatically send them a reminder that they have open questions for which answers are there - upon they did not react. And then after - let's say n weeks (people have vacation and get sick) - start subtracting one karma point day by day ...

      That would only be feasible/ fair if:

      • one could see a list of answered questions that have not been closed
      • one could choose an answer as not correct. After all some folks just answer with random nonsense
      • people would get informed by email:
      • - after n days that there are open questions with answers upon they did not react
      • - every day a karma points gets reduced

      All the best

      Mark

      (SCNR = Sorry Could Not Resist)

      • Oct 19, 2016 at 07:24 AM

        I am not very experienced in asking questions (bug/feedback in Open Beta don't count). The only question, which I asked, was this one: S-user ID for certification: freelancer.

        It took me a while to close it, because I wanted to provide useful information for others, which face similar difficulties (there was some e-mail communication with SAP and with other organizations, which took time). Yes, I could have closed the thread a month earlier without providing this info - was I acting as a good or as a bad member?

        I have seen threads with very useful information, where the OP provided feedback after communicating with SAP support on the topic (which we all know - takes a while) Settlement Management : Condition Contract. Sometimes it can be hard to determine the right time-frame to close a question, and the OP's responsible behavior needs to be encouraged.

        Another problem is, that now I don't get notifications, when people comment on my questions and ask for more information (I am ashamed to admit, but this happened to me again today - I have no easy way to track this from Activity stream or from my profile; if it gets fixed soon, then maybe it can be possible to determine if the OP disappeared).

        And your post reminded me, that @mention is not implemented yet.

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 02:12 PM

      So why does anyone have to send a note to anyone. This is the world of IT and BOTS. We have BOTS that pop up and ask you if you want to chat with someone. It seems that the powers that be managed to design in THAT feature to the new community. That shows that Sales and Marketing drive this. Not technical people.

      If they can pop up a BOT to get me into a chat session, surely they can develop a batch job to set a status on questions that have no activity after a week or a month. Why do the mods need to do that? Let the system do that and if a user wants their question reopened, they can contact a moderator and make the request. I'm not saying delete the questions and responses, I'm just saying that if the user doesn't have any interest in it ten days later, why should I?

      This is just another example where Sales and marketing drive this platform, they get additional functionality and the technical side doesn't even get similar functionality to what they had, let alone anything new! It'll be a year to get back to what was available before.

      Maybe we should just go to our respective product areas and start asking our technical questions directly to the SAP representative from now on and just do away with answering questions.

      Craig

      rm9kh.png (468.3 kB)
  • Oct 19, 2016 at 12:56 PM

    Hi, everyone:
    I know I'm still the new guy (and maybe even the enemy to some degree :-/ ), but I've been wondering the same.
    The Using SAP.com discussions have grown to epic proportions, and it would be nice to separate the answered from those still not resolved. In a few cases, I've thought, "I believe this has been answered" and accepted an answer as correct, only to have the poster complain (sometimes angrily) that the question hasn't been answered at all.

    Oops.

    So maybe there's a way to do what Steve is suggesting, while taking people's inherent laziness into account. :)

    Per Steve's point, the moderator could leave a suggestion encouraging the original poster to accept the answer. (I think it's OK to make this comment visible to everyone though. It's really just a polite suggestion, and if other people see it, it simply reinforces the need to accept answers.) But the suggestion could also indicate that if the poster doesn't take some action, we'll need to accept an answer on his or her behalf.

    So a response could be: "Hi, [so-and-so]: I believe response x answers your question. If it has, would you mind accepting it as correct? If not, could you leave a comment explaining why your question hasn't been answered yet? I politely ask that you do one or the other within [1 day? 2 days? a week?]. After that, I'll take the liberty of accepting answer x as correct on your behalf so that members can focus their attention on open questions. Thanks in advance for your help."

    I've been tempted to do that with the discussions I'm monitoring, but I have to tread pretty carefully right now. With everything that's happening in these early post-launch days, I don't want to risk causing more irritation from people who think a community employee is dismissing their questions (which would never be my intent).

    Anyway, just a thought. If I'm way off here, I hope the vets will school me (gently) on why my fresh-faced enthusiasm isn't grounded in reality. :)

    --Jerry

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 01:34 PM

      We all need a dose of fresh-faced enthusiasm from time to time:-) It is too easy, sometimes, to slip into a "that's never worked, so don't bother trying to change it" mentality.

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 01:35 PM

      I like it. :)

      For now I would suggest to not put an ultimatum on the user, though. The navigation experience and trouble with finding back to your own content is currently a red rag for the users. No need to add time pressure to that.

      But encouraging them to close questions is good, IMO. And it kind of helps to show this feature (accepting answers and closing threads) in action. I do this, too. And have changed accepted answers, too, if I saw a real one (changing it from "I see what we can do / we are working on it" to "Delivered, should work now!").

    • Oct 19, 2016 at 02:58 PM

      This could simply be a done with a BOT. If no answer is accepted you could easily have a BOT put in an item in their activity stream.

      ***************************

      Your question xxxxxxxxxxxxxx is not marked as answered and has had no activity in the past ten days. Please mark an answer as correct or update your question with the newest information you have.

      If no action is taken in the next 5 days, the system will mark your question as inactive. To reactivate it, you will need to contact a moderator.

      ***************************

      • Oct 19, 2016 at 04:55 PM

        We can do type ahead searches when starting a new question - can't we fire off an async process that checks the current user Q&A queue for unanswered questions and give them a modal popup, acting as a gentle nudge to address them with a direct link to their posted and unclosed questions? I see this with online banking sites after logging in, always wanting me to verify some details, etc. If we make it subtle enough then it is less forceful.

    • Oct 20, 2016 at 09:22 AM

      There are no enemies in the Coffee Corner - only people drinking coffee, eating cookies, shooting the breeze...

      Just bring your own cookies and don't try to sell me a fake Rolex. :)

      • Oct 24, 2016 at 07:10 PM

        Does apple streusel cake count?

        • Oct 25, 2016 at 07:57 AM

          It definitely counts... and thanks to you mentioning delicious stuff, I will have to visit today a small shop nearby and buy some cake... I managed to resist the temptation for a few weeks... goodbye diet!

  • Oct 19, 2016 at 04:19 PM

    As a Space Moderator, I also vouch for 10 open questions maximum considering the fact

    • that there wont be any hijacked threads
    • there wont be any old threads pushed to top of the forum just by adding non-value words like "Nice", "Good" etc.,

    Also if I am correct, as of now, with the new SCN, there is no clarity on Space Moderators showing who is moderating which space

  • avatar image
    Former Member
    Oct 20, 2016 at 11:18 AM

    Steve. I totally agree with the unacceptability of answer acceptability by question posters who receive quite detailed and thought through answers. They take it and use it but don't return the favour by acknowledging the effort. The problem is a subtle one, most if not all posters are grateful and would give credit but at the time they read the answer they are not necessarily in a position to ascertain if this answer is indeed the correct one for them. Sometimes it is easy to check and in the same session accept the answer.

    What a lot of posters do is drop the session and go off and spend hours and days implementing some fix suggested to them and never come back to the original thread. The behaviour is driven by the nature of the interaction, session based.

    Perhaps we could reward the poster for returning having implemented the fix using the answer given by a contributor. So both contributor and poster share in the rewards for successfully design, implementing and validating a suggested solution.

    A less rewarding solution to the question poster is simply to consider the question posting and the eventual correct answer acceptance part of one long interrupted session. The poster will not be able ask any new questions if a reply has not been accepted or declined as not being helpful.

    Just an idea.

  • Oct 21, 2016 at 06:41 PM

    I hate to say this but unmarked questions will be with the SAP community until it's completely shut down. You can't solve this problem as there is no practical way to enforce this. Even the 10 question limit causes more problems(wrong marking of correct answers). Sing with me "Let it go, Let it go".

    Take care,

    Stephen

    • Oct 24, 2016 at 08:07 AM

      I'm not trying to enforce anything. Personally I think a limit on open questions is a bad idea. Marking questions as answered is a great help when others search for the same thing. They'll get an answer more quickly if they can see which questions have answers that worked. Accepting answers is being helpful to others. I'm just trying to find a way to encourage people to be helpful. You got an answer to your question - now give a little back and mark it answered to help others.

      I'm sure on a small scale this problem will be here forever. You're right about that. But if we can use the new platform and new process as an opportunity to encourage more people to be helpful, wouldn't that be a good thing?

      Sing with me, "Always look on the bright side of life..." :-)

    • Oct 24, 2016 at 04:35 PM

      Agreed.

      But than at some point, have the system mark them automatically to a status of "Locked due to inactivity".

      If the OP wants to reopen, all they have do is let a moderator know. Same thing if someone comes up with a solution and want to adde a solution. Preferrably they write a blog and just reference the question.

      Craig

    • Nov 10, 2016 at 02:43 PM

      A new status can be introduced: 'Closed without solution' or something like this. By setting this status, user signs to the Community that the discussion on the question should be stopped. Leaving it open, however, doesn't give any sign at all.

  • Oct 22, 2016 at 09:09 PM

    Could you do something like after e.g. 60 days of no activity, send an automated note to the person who raised the question, saying something along the lines of: "please confirm if this post is answered or still open by clicking on the appropriate button in the email?" and if no response, it automatically gets marked as answered after x number of days after that. Then repeat the same every couple of months or whatever if it is still unanswered. Or would that mean people getting credit for an unacceptable answer, just because nobody could be bothered to challenge it?

    • Oct 24, 2016 at 09:07 AM

      "Assumed answered" was the status in the old SCN, because if somebody with the same issue stumples upon that thread happy it is answered, s/he will be pretty disappointed to find out that it's not.

      Maybe the better new status would be "Closed"?

  • Nov 10, 2016 at 02:35 PM

    Once, under SDN, after having 10 open questions, a user couldn't open a new thread. I thought it was a good solution then, as it could be now. I brought this issue up when a migration to SCN in 2012 took place, but it was not considered as a high priority and eventually nothing was done on the subject.

    • Nov 10, 2016 at 02:38 PM

      It's a great idea. Why do not post into idea's place? xD
      Try again, maybe now a lot of people vote (?)

    • Nov 10, 2016 at 05:27 PM

      From my experience, the punitive measures do not work. As someone already noted above, the limit on SDN simply lead to any random answer labeled as "correct" and then it just caused confusion.

      Instead, if you want people to do something, give them better tools to do that and, ideally, some incentive. To close a question right now, first you have to find it (and with no pagination in the profile this will become a problem for some in a few months), open it, dig through who knows how many answers, find tiny "Best Answer". If you could just mark the best answer in the notification stream (or from the email, assuming email notifications will be restored) IMHO you'd get much higher question closure rate. Add some carrot on top (Karma points, "good SCNtizen" badge or whatever excites the Millennials these days) and you are in business.

      I remember we've also discussed adding the number of open questions or open/close ratio to the profile pop-up (personally, I'd be more inclined to help someone who follows up) but now there is no pop-up.

      On a bright side, the new answer voting should help with identifying good answers regardless of what OP thinks. And it would be nice if all the questions were closed automatically (and the ones with no replies even deleted) after some reasonable time, like 30-60 days. This would solve necromancing, questions showing up on unanswered list forever, etc.

      • Nov 11, 2016 at 10:18 AM

        I can hardly consider a limit on open questions as a 'punishment'. I was launching a poll back in 2012 and most of the users, including those who exaggerated with multiple questions, were in favour of restoring this business rule. But, anyway, numerous questions is not exactly what the new SCN is facing right now. Quite the opposite :(

  • Dec 18, 2016 at 06:07 AM

    Hello,

    Thank you all for this great discussion and feedback. From my experience, in a community that many of its users are random we need to find the most intuitive/automotive solution. I will come-up with a proposal for this in the upcoming weeks.

    Besides enabling moderators to close it, maybe senior members would also be able to do so (just suggesting, don't know if it's feasible:))

    Regards,

    Moshe

    • Dec 18, 2016 at 10:10 AM

      why should anyone else close the question on behalf of the user who does not care to thank his contributors?

      This just lets the user look good if someone looks at his history and in reality he is one who does not care.

      • Dec 18, 2016 at 12:25 PM

        Hi Jurgen,

        I was talking from the perspective of marking answers as correct and giving the deserved credit to users who invested in replying to someone's question. Good point.

        Regards,

        Moshe

        • Dec 18, 2016 at 01:59 PM

          I have actually posted an idea https://ideas.sap.com/D38919 to make the answered question better visible in the user profile. So the user can easily identify his open and closed questions, and a moderator can guide him too if there are too much open questions

          • Feb 12, 2017 at 06:06 AM

            Hi Jurgen & All,

            From your experience in the community so far, what do you think is the best solution to this issue? I tend to think that encouraging members via Email notifications and a limit of 10 questions would help a lot.

            What do you think?

            Although as we are addressing a lot of other high priority topics now, it might take time until we get something implemented. Although once we have Email notifications, it won't be a big deal to change the text in them.

            Regards,

            Moshe

            • Feb 13, 2017 at 09:03 AM
              From your experience in the community so far, what do you think is the best solution to this issue?

              You do not really want to hear the best solution for many of us, trust me *angelic smile while nods to a bulldozer*


              Seriously, just active and constant moderation (something the actual moderators already do but they are too few for the dispersive tag implementation) where they suggest the OPs to close/accept.

            • Feb 13, 2017 at 09:28 AM

              Hi Moshe,

              As I mentioned before, I'd restore a blocking factor, which was available before migration to SCN back in 2012. A warning of 80% via email notification could be equally a good measure, but ultimately user should be blocked from posting a new thread, if the limit of N (10 or other) questions is exceeded. I hardly can imagine a reasonable situation where a user asks 10 questions in a row and doesn't get any answer. Again, this measure should not be considered as 'punishment', but more a preventive mean for better management of Q&A desks.

              Regards,

              Eli

            • Feb 13, 2017 at 10:48 AM

              All pros and cons are already listed here and were listed in current and previous ideas.

              An active reporter of issues and bugs in this community can easily get to 10 open questions before one gets solved, and this holds as well good for solutions given to people working in large companies where it can take several weeks to get it tested and approved, especially in case the solution affects other teams and functions too.

              On the other side less than 20% of all questions have an accepted answer which is also discouraging the people who spend time helping.

              So we should try to break the downwards spiral, better sooner with some little improvements than next year with a kind of perfect solution.

              As it is already possible to show my own answers from my profile with an icon that the answer was accepted, it cannot really be that difficult to implement the same for own questions. This would at least help me to guide people by direct messages and a blog like I did it in the last 5 years.

              Of course is an email or pop-up with the number of open questions while entering a new question as well appreciated. It could even be a standard remark on an email to notify about a new answer to a question (which is soon to come)

    • Dec 19, 2016 at 01:46 PM

      No offense but the community has floated numerous suggestions for this for year's. Waaayyyy back...

      With the technology available today, I sincerely hope that SAP does not develope a process that involves making volunteer moderators be the arbitrators of what gets closed, marked, or force mods to 'warn' users, etc..."

      Simply place some limits on people and create some bots to enforce the rules.

      - determine a limit for a reasonable number of open posts

      - monitor open posts for users and when they logon give them an automated pop-up when they get close to their limit.

      - give them a couple of extra statuses to close their questions:

      "Closed by OP, no answer found"

      "Closed by OP, resolved by self"

      - automatically close questions with no activity on them after 6 months, (or 9 months, or 1 year, just pick something!). Have the system add the status "Closed for inactivity"

      - Allow moderators to reactivate a posting if requested by an OP or other interested party.

      There seems to be an issue of indecision here, no one wants to make some rules to play by. Guess what... we need rules! Whatever is decided upon won't be perfect and may never be perfect. But this issue has been ongoing for YEARS now across all three incarnations of SCN. It has been repeatedly brought up as an issue by numerous people, it repeatedly has high interest and discussion around it, and it has been repeatedly punted down the road by SAP.

      Some people won't like what is put in place I'm sure. But it has to be better than doing nothing.

  • Feb 27, 2017 at 05:44 PM

    Question closed with reason "answer accepted" but no actual answer accepted: https://answers.sap.com/questions/117146/select-min-set-of-rows-that-match-query.html

    If this was a sensible application, it'd prompt the OP to pick a best answer when closing. Oh well, having two different ways to wrap up the question doesn't help either, from what I see...

    • Feb 28, 2017 at 10:06 AM

      Ain't it funny when a question about database issues reveals an inconsistency here?

    • Feb 28, 2017 at 09:36 PM

      Hi, Jelena:

      This particular topic (multiple ways to accept an answer) was discussed here: https://answers.sap.com/questions/113900/right-answer-was-accepted.html -- if you were interested in the conversation and Moshe's response.

      Best regards,

      --Jerry

      • Feb 28, 2017 at 10:40 PM

        Thanks for the link, Jerry. Close action does not make the question count as answered, unfortunately. Try "Unanswered" filter in ABAP tag questions - you'll see closed questions are very much on the list (I believe I posted about this before).

        I'm honestly not sure what was the design behind this functionality. Previous options on SCN (mark as correct / mark as helpful / mark as "closed with no answer") were more clear and simpler to use. (And still some people would not use them!) Even simpler would be a single action button that would guide OP through the process - pick a best answer or close since no answer possible (or not acceptable). Or (one can dream) OP would get some notification to follow-up on the questions still open after N days.

        As bare minimum, it should be technically feasible to perform a simple check when OP choses "answer accepted" option. Did OP really pick a best answer? If not then issue a message "hey, buddy, go back and pick a best answer first".

        • Feb 28, 2017 at 11:02 PM

          All good points, Jelena. I'll share with Moshe. I believe a new Q&A UI is coming soon, but I don't think that would solve the issue with answered questions showing up as unanswered.

        • Mar 01, 2017 at 08:22 PM

          Jelena would the system understand if it is the best answer or not by comparing all the votes that the answers received? Do you mind sharing how you envision it?

          • Mar 01, 2017 at 09:23 PM

            Not sure I understand the question... I envision that OP should not be able to close a question with "answer accepted" without actually accepting an answer. I'm not expecting the system to pick an answer for OP, that wouldn't make sense.

            Recommended reading on how this worked on SCN (note large buttons then vs tiny "Accept" now): https://blogs.sap.com/2013/04/03/how-to-close-a-discussion-and-why/

          • Mar 01, 2017 at 10:41 PM

            I made the same error yesterday when reading Jelena's sentence "Did OP really pick a best answer?"

            I had also read "the" instead of "a" in this sentence

            • Mar 02, 2017 at 05:43 PM

              I guess it should've been "Did OP really accept an answer?". But after an answer is accepted it becomes "best answer", not "accepted answer". SCN is confusing! And English is too! :)

  • Mar 01, 2017 at 05:25 PM

    I believe the simple e-mail asking to choose the best answer is the easiest solution here. If there will be a limit of questions that you can ask, people will just create fake accounts.

    I don't know how it's currently working, but I think it would be a good idea to display information to mark the question as answered in the thread. But something really visible rather than small text hided somewhere.

    Best regards

    Bartosz

  • Mar 01, 2017 at 06:09 PM

    The official Q&A guide only has a short note at the end that after the question has been answered OP needs to "close it". There is no mentioning of accepting best answer and no screenshots (unlike for the instructions on how to post an answer).

    At minimum, that needs to be updated. Suggesting to just "close" will lead exactly to the question closure with no answer chosen. Which seems to be the opposite of the behavior we're trying to encourage.

  • Mar 03, 2017 at 07:59 PM

    Fellas!!! Fellas!!! There is a change in the notifications, just noticed today:

    Not that I needed a reminder but hopefully it'll help some lost souls.

    image.jpg (17.4 kB)
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