I have a suggestion
Having been active on hubpages for about 6 months now, I have seen the same things come up time and time again:
What should I flag as a bad hub?
Why are my adsense ads showing inappropriate advertising?
How much money can I make?
Is it OK to promote myself on the forums?
What is a flagship hub and how do I get to do one?
How do I make the news capsules work?
Why has my hub been flagged as duplicate content and what actually constitutes duplicate content?
Is this because someone flagged me or is it automatic?
How do I make the ebay/ amazon capsules work?
We have all seen the same questions and it is fair to say, the answers are sometimes a little vague and have caused a few misunderstandings and arguments
I think we need a more comprehensive FAQ/help section. I also think we need to have it be that someone cannot sign up and create an account unless they have read and agreed that they understand said FAQ
I would offer my services to help create this FAQ - but I suggest that there are some members much better qualified and with far more patience than I possess - darkside, Misha and relache being good examples. It might even be a good idea if we could have a few candidates put forward and have the members vote on who gets to do it. If we do that, my vote will be going to these 3.
I also think hubpages would do well to offer these 3 people and a few others money to do it. I think it would be money well spent and would save a few conflicts.
As an aside, despite the few arguments raging right now, I personally like to see this as it makes me feel part of a community and we are bound to have a few clashes - I can't say I haven't clashed with a few myself
Oh and can we have some more smilies added to the hubpages' repertoire?
And if we do that, can I have the sarcasm one named after me?
I'm for this idea. And the sarcasm Mark smile, too.
Great suggestions Mark, you hit it right on the nose (need an img for that one)....
When I first joined, I looked specific for a FAQ link at the Top.
I then had to dig through several threads on the forums to find the answers to same various questions reported by Mark. A FAQ section would of saved a lot of time...
Excellent idea, Mark.
Is this applicable:
I stole it from RFox in another thread, but it seems appropriate.
Mark is right! Some of these things need to be addressed in a place where everyone can find them. (Okay, I admit to asking a lot of those questions a few weeks back)
Someone really needs to address the issue of plagiarism. People seem really confused on that one. The rules are quite clear in print journalism, and I know of several sites that are designed to help online writers determine what they can / cannot do. I would put it all in a Hub, and give them proper credit for it, but would that then get flagged by someone who doesn't know any better?
No. Of course not.
I don't know how to get those cool smilies! Is there a tutorial for that?
Excellent Idea!! And the sarcasm smilie should definitely be named after Mark.
There's a thread called "Smilies for Mark" started by Darkside, which includes a lot of them - but not the "flogging a dead horse" one - love that!!
It also has the instructions as to how to put them in your own posts.
Thanks, Darkside, you're a star!
This is a good idea... if all problems were only 'system' driven and not manually undertaken by Hubbers...
Right now, the problems for the most part -- that are currently being experienced... are related to individual actions and NOT the system... although the 'system' is allowing for such abuse to take place.
This is the most immediate good idea that should be looked at.
Please see my recent thread I just posted...
I'm not convinced it would work to require people to read the FAQ before they sign up. How many of us, faced with a solid chunk of text, scroll through it and hit "I Agree" without reading it carefully?
Right now, I like the screen that comes up when you start a new Hub - it's laid out in a way that invites you to look, and keeps the info to the essential minimum so you're not tempted to skim. Maybe something like that would work.
Otherwise, what are the chances of "sticky" threads being added to the forums?
As much as I feel flattered, I can't say I share this idea wholeheartedly. I'm more with Marisa on that - some people don't read FAQ no matter what. And - surprise! - those are the same people who post questions on forums.
Based on my experience elsewhere, there is no shortage of those who ask, as well as those who answer. If Mark, Darkside, and Relache get bored and stop answering, there will be others stepping on the plate, happy to share their experience...
That's pretty much it.
They get overwhelmed by a long descriptive FAQ too.
I've got no problems writing a hub about how things work for each specific aspect. And if someone comes along and asks a particular question, I give 'em the link!
I notice others have handed out my links too. That's great. I really appreciate it.
I will note that I put my Adsense ads exposure on these hubs as NONE. Because Adsense have no worthwhile ads to serve up with information on HubPages and the chances of a hubber ever clicking on an ad anyway is slim. It would drive my pageviews up and my CTR down.
The best source of information is from active and loyal users. I was so happy to see when HubPages HQ put in the forum.
Yeh good one Mark. I like the "Team" approach to this. Only problem - its the same team members who participate in these forums. You might see a new name here and there but really its all the usual suspects and the new names don't last long and continue to post.
If you go through all the posts here it is generally the same people. That goes to show the other members could not give a golden continental for forums and following the rules.
To prove a point - where is the faq section - as I have never thought to read it.
Basically there are different breeds of people, our marketers who come along and spam the place down, the lonely who come for the anonymous conversation and the dedicated at heart who enjoy their writings and promotions.
I joined only because I read an article on the linking power of hubpages and when I visited the place and had a look around I saw it offered more than that.
Its a good idea you have but really its like teaching all bad children to be good. It just won't happen and if it did then you have hit the magic button. Cheers!!
Mark, Thanks for the thoughts. We would certainly like a more efficient method of answering these questions.
Do you think if we had a FAQ/help wiki that it would become useful?
It would save the straight duplication of advice that's going on now in the Forums.
It would also be good to run a search over forum subject lines in the "Help from Fellow Hubbers" forum and suggest relevant FAQs to the questioner.
And to get back on track:
Yes. Abso-friggin-lutely. The software is free and many are used to using the interface. But, I also think access to authoring to be limited by hubpages staff. I have suggested a few I think should do it - darkside, Misha and relache for starters - You guys know who is patient, helpful and non-sarcastic
Mark hit the nail on the head here. A better FAQ would save many of us a lot of time wasted in the forums.
In my opinion hubpages would benefit in the long run from "A Step-by-Step Encyclopedia for Dummies on How to Create, Edit and Promote a Hub." And I mean "for dummies."
The forums could be saved from much of the current trivia if only Newbies and "dummies" could refer to an index of hubs that would answer every conceivable question relating to writing and designing hubs, signing up with Google Adsense, etc.
Existing hubs could be organized, edited and approved by hubpages to cover each aspect of hubbing and, I would hope, promoting the hubs through social networking, etc. I believe it would be wise, if this is done, to test each instruction, where feasible, by having someone unfamiliar with computers read the hubs to determine whether a "dummy" is able to follow the instructions successfully.
Believe it or not, I've read a lot of the existing instructional hubs, but sometimes I've been unable to accomplish the task, despite the fact that the hubs are well done. It only takes a small roadblock in the instructions to stymie a dummy.
And I would be more than happy to be used as your dummie! Every 'expert' needs to understand, where they must begin -- in order to communicate, with a 'dummie'.
What I find interesting, is the fact that there are only a hand full of those who consider themselves expert enough to answer the questions posted in the forums.
I am going to throw out the idea... since I am a 'dummie' here, that perhaps some dummies do not know for sure if what the 'experts' that are self appointed down here, are saying... is indeed, either the correct information - or even if it is, still - do not consider them as expert as they themselves do:-)
So William, from a dummie to an expert... I think that you have an idea... that would give the right experts... an overall 'stamp' of approval for being an 'expert' IF HP would do what you suggest.
Or they must 'assign' this forum expert - to speak on HP's behalf as an expert.
I think that credibility, trust, etc... perhaps 'could' be an issue -- that HP is not fully aware of... thus the lack of more 'experts' and the gathering of all the 'dummies'.
It is a natural phenomenon that there should be many more 'dummies' that experts... you know?
You seem like a nice expert, I must say...
Things for 'Dummies' sell really well:-)
Well THEY do they are called Paul Deeds, Paul Edmondson and Jason Menayan - the Pauls are founders of HP and Jason is an employee
Hi Lissie -
Oh yes... those are the true 'Experts'! No arguments there. LOL
Trust me.... 'they' of which you identify, are not the 'experts' of which I was referring.
Thanks... you too, are a kind unofficial 'expert', and one that I find to be very easy to engage with.
*are you a night-owl like me, or a different time zone?
Only those three *know* how HP works - because they designed it and keep tweaking it. And they never disclose all details.
All others (including me) are guessing. We have more or less educated guesses, but they are still guesses...
Kathryn, if you want to know how to Hub, just read Darkside's Hubs on Hubbing.
In fact, there are a lot of Hubs with advice on how to Hub - the problem for newbies is that's not the place you think of looking for help.
Good Morning, to All of you lovely Hubbers -
Misha and Marissa (cute:-) Good team work, and this is what it is all about here, the team and the Team.
You display Team effort, which I think is good. Not proclaiming the Expert status, but showing respect to a dummie, nonetheless.
Very, very - good Form.
I appreciate your counsel. Actually I have just linked to one of Darkside's Hubs on a topic....
But again, this is 'how' dummies, like myself... think. And, I am only voicing for 'dummies' because a lot of them, must be too 'dumb' to speak. LOL
HP has their resident and self-proclaimed 'experts'
(please note the lower-case e versus E)
and NOW, we shall also declare (thanks to bing) having - self-proclaimed 'dummies'. (lower-case D).
CEO Dummies... are Simply attempting to Understand all dummies.
Lest anyone is abusive here.... We need to remember that until a Hubber,
(and spell-check here, needs to Stop having a problem with the word 'Hubber' - as in 'learn new')
self-proclaims themselves to be a 'dummie' - to call anyone a dummy, may and should be considered - Rude, as in a donkey... rude:-)
Please note the spelling and use of the words both - of , 'dummies and dummy'.
(I need the sarcasm flag right now) Nonetheless, true. Good guidlelines for dummies and experts alike:-) IMHO
Now, to this dummie's point... dummies, like myself - who are most happy to admit their 'dummies' status, are not assured that just because 'anyone' publishes about their 'opinion' regarding Hubpages - makes 'them' an EXPERT.
dummies have not be around enough, and really are NOT as dumb, as some are thinking... perhaps?
Until I know that 'a' source IS Credible, per the Experts and Dummies, then I don't necessarily accept Them, and Theirs - as Expert work.
Tell the dummies.. why they should?
Thus 'Bing's' suggestion is brilliant - and simple, for a ghost. A Wiki - unfortunately is for self-proclaimed experts, thus any dummie, could personally open a Wiki as suggested and proclaim A Self -Expert status.
Wiki- is open-resource, which some consider Credible, but dummies know better than that.
Perhaps the 'dummies' have a higher I.Q. than ever dreamed of?
Lover of ALL Self-Proclaimed, dummies.
dummies UNITE! lol
I can't tell already when you are serious from when you are kidding around
Which is good - in my 'expert' opinion
I am serious on the whole thing, yet I hope humorous as not to offend.... hope this helps?
I am often accused of being 'cryptic'. I kind of like to communicate like that...
Sorry.... if it is confusing.
I am just really, a nice old lady... and kind of a dummie at times, but comfortable with this status:-)
Nice to see you today and have appreciated you gentleman-like quality here on the forums, always. You are very approachable and always so kind.
I feel that I can easily be myself with discussing these kinds of difficulties and know that you will not jump to an incorrect assumption...
Kathyrn, anyone on these forums will tell you I am quite the opposite - I have a tendency to come straight out and say what others are thinking, which is not always popular
In this case, I feel I have to do it again!
I do find your "cryptic" posts hard to understand. I'm sure, if you took some time, you could write a post one-third of the length and three times as understandable. There are many people here who would be happy to help you if we could work out what you mean!
As for who is an Expert and who is an expert - you'll find the same thing on forums on websites everywhere. That's what forums are all about: the founders or administrators of any website are usually too busy running the place to be constantly offering advice, so users turn to other users. Most people on a forum understand they are talking to their peers and therefore that the advice is not gospel.
I can usually understand the intent of your "cryptic" posts, but I am often put off from replying for another reason.
They often sound passive-aggressive to me, as though you are having a swipe at someone in an indirect way that makes it hard for them to answer your accusations, and in fact allows you to plausibly deny any hostile intent at all.
Generally that means that I hold back from offering help, because I wonder if you are really sincere in the surface question you appear to be asking, or whether you are just using the thread as a way to have a jab at someone with whom you are annoyed.
If it's the latter, I just don't want to get involved, so if in doubt, I stay out.
You would get more help from me, too, if you were clear and straightforward in your posts.
However, you have every right to write in your preferred style, and I am not asking you to change it. My sensitivity to passive-aggressive undertones is a result of my family of origin experiences, so it's my issue, and there are plenty of other people who can respond to your questions and comments in their current form.
Perhaps but a feeble attempt at humor -- in hopes of diffusing any tension here on 'our' forums:-)
Let me help you out here. (must be the whole ESL thing
What Kathryn is trying to say is that some of these so-called, self-styled prophets, oops, I mean "Experts" cannot be considered experts. They did not agree with her - Despite the fact that she asked her question over and over and over and over - Therefore they cannot be experts - either with or without the capital letter.
So, what she is suggesting is that someone other than these experts gives advice to "dummies," and anyone asking a question in the forums should take careful note of who is doing the advising - because they are lying and often do not know the TRUTH - therefore they cannot be trusted.
And Kathryn LSD Momma - For goodness' sake - say what you mean - it saves a lot of confusion for our foreign friends.
Here is my two cents worth.
Not everyone learns the same way and whether there is a FAQ or not you will always have inexperienced Hubbers asking questions. Since the forum is called Help for Hubbers this would be the natural place for those people to come to ask questions.
For those who are complaining about having to answer the same questions over and over.....unless you are a staff member or are being paid to answer the questions then you really have no obligation to answer them. If you find it a burden then you should refrain from answering them. Help should be given freely from the goodness of your heart and a genuine wish to help others.
If you are not feeling particularly helpful...then stay out of the help forum because sarcastic responses do not help anyone and may very well turn a new Hubber off. Remember you didn't start Hubbing as an expert so you can't expect others to either. They may very well turn out to be excellent writers and valuable contributors to HubPages with a little guidance and experience.
THIS ONE IS FOR ALL THE GIRLS!
I love HubPages.... So many awesome voices. It is good to hear them more down-under:-)
It appears as though 'dummies' can understand one another, eh?
Thank you. I could not have possibly said that, any better. I think I love U.
Well, I am always up for someone new to argue with.
Actually, I started this thread out of a desire to find an easier way to help new hubbers. And, just so you know - when I am being sarcastic, you will see this:
It avoids confusion
Having looked through your hubtivity (and I have to say, actually, I agree with most of what you said) - I discover that you are one of those people who prefers NOT to help new hubbers. I have been through all of your hubtivity and you have NEVER answered anyone's questions - Not once.
So, I suggest you look through these forum threads:
And when you have done that, go and read this hub:
http://hubpages.com/hub/HubTopPageGoogl … onReligion
When you have done that - feel free to have a go at me.
Having said all that - welcome to hubpages. And especially - welcome to the forums - I hope to see you here more often - At least what you said makes sense.
LOL You are right Mark, I haven't answered anyone's questions because I feel I am still a relative newbie here yet and don't have it all figured out yet myself.
My comment wasn't directed specifically to you. I have seen several complaints in my wanderings through the forums. I am not trying to bash anyone I just don't understand the complaint.
Well - they call me Mr. Sarcasm, and I am hoping that when they eventually add a sarcasm smilie, they will name it after me ... I just assumed ...sorry
And it's not really a complaint - I just think it would be a good idea to have a reference source for the new members. Th current one is a little confusing - judging by the questions we get .
Mark I have read all of those threads already.
I know there are times when no matter how you try you just can't tolerate another person's style. It just rubs you the wrong way. When that happens with me I just usually choose not to respond to the person LOL unless I am in a really pissy mood and want to get in a really good argument LMAO
I know there is a rift going on in the forums between a few members. I may have been silent in the forums but it doesn't mean I have not read most of what is being posted. It also spills out into comments on some of the Hubs.
I am choosing for the moment to stay neutral. I do not know anyone here well enough yet to form an intelligent opinion so that is why I have been silent about it.
I agree with the need for more FAQs
I found loads of great info about building hubs using google searches - but specific questions I had were a different matter.
For example, I know it's possible to have a problem with hubs if you repeatedly link to the same site - but I couldn't find specific guidelines. For example, if you have a site with 50 subdomains is it spammy if you have articles that address the different subdomain topics and provide a link in that article to that one subdomain? I don't know - couldn't find the answer so I won't do it.
It's possible that some overstep the boundaries simply because those boundaries are not clearly defined or adequately explained.
My own quest for some answers led me to the forum - where I found no "search" function. That one thing would be a great addition here.
Experts, like gurus, come in two flavors: recognized and self-anointed. Every forum online has its share of both and it doesn't usually take long for other members to tell the difference.
It's the 2nd search box down, in the top right quadrant on the Forum homepage, with the button reading "search forums" next to it.
yes Mark, a searchable FAQ would definitely be a benefit to new Hubbers. It might eliminate a few of the questions but many people need discussion no matter how detailed the FAQ is and I also think that by asking questions it is a way for some people to break the ice and meet members of the community. It is more comfortable for them to ask a question to open a conversation than to just say Hi.
That's why I think a wiki or FAQ would be a good idea - written by the recognized "gurus" lol
And then there are those who just get a thrill out of pissing people off (not sure if I can say that here LOL) All the FAQ in the world will not help that. You just can't fix "stupid."
*grin* thanks. I have my moments
AND....I just answered my first question on Help from Hubbers LOL
LOL my silence is broken....I hope you know you may have unleashed a lion. I tend to sit and observe for a while before jumping in but once I feel comfortable.
I have very much enjoyed HubPages so far though. I love to write on just about any topic.
Go for it - The only thing most people object to is spamming and promotional rubbish. and I personally get upset at....well, I suspect you already know what I get upset at
LMAO yes, I know what you get upset at.
I never push my products in my articles. And I don't drop links to my hubs in all my comments like a few do LOL I have a link to my website usually in the links at the bottom of most of my articles. I trust the quality of my hubs to make people want to check further into my businesses. I mostly write here for the enjoyment of it. If I make a few bucks here and there on Adsense or affiliates that is a bonus. I have had several people sign up for my newsletter since joining HubPages. That is more important to me than trying to get lucky with a sale from an article...which is a long shot at best LOL
Say it as I see it is my motto.
I already looked at your work before I spoke to you the first time. If your hubs had been full of spam and poor links, you would have had a very different reply LOL - So, I meant what I said - Welcome to hubpages. I like what you are doing, and I think you will be a great addition to the forums.
Thank you I appreciate your encouragement and honesty.
I'm sure I could answer a lot of questions that a lot of people ask in the forums, but I've learned that if my first mental reaction is "damn, can't these people even wipe their own a$$es?" it means I shouldn't bother answering right then and I should go do something else.
Otherwise I'd be giving Mark a run for the sarcasm prize.....
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