Gladly? Why!

I mentioned a while back that I’d been invited to become a moderator on the Haloscan forum. I’m pretty comfortable with HTML, CSS, Javascript and the way the commenting system works, so I thought it would be a good chance to ‘give back’.

But I forgot that people are morons. No not everyone, and I guess, really, they aren’t morons … let me start over.

I’m not a patient kind of guy. In my line of work the only person I really need to explain things to is me or my team. Now as I hired everyone in my team (yeah yeah it’s a team of one at the moment, but it did get all the way up to 5 at one point!) I know that I can expect a certain level of knowledge and go from there.

I should also remember that back in 1997 I was the one asking silly questions in the ADV-HTML mailing list.

I also realise that there is no such thing as a stupid question, that everyone’s knowledge levels are different etc etc etc this is all stuff I think about during my working day (will x know this or do I need to explain it?)

Moderating a forum is pretty straightforward really. Trouble is I’d forgotten that people are morons. Ohh I wasn’t going to say that was I… OK SOME people are just downright lazy. The instant they get a little problem – off to the forums they go, posting merrily. Now the Haloscan FAQ could be better (and yes I’m compiling one at the moment) but the forum has a SEARCH option… how difficult is it?? Obviously too difficult for some.

But of course this is human nature, again something I study for professional purposes. Everyone is the same. If you have a problem with something what do you do? You ask someone for help. You don’t consult the documentation, you don’t check and see if someone has asked a similar question before. There are a myriad of reasons why people don’t use documentation as often as they should, the main one being that in their experience it’s badly written (incomplete, inaccurate or not context-sensitive enough).

However this lack of using a search function is a new one for me. Maybe it is the case the some people are just so new to the whole thing (a lot of people in the forum have ‘just setup their blog and can’t get x to work’), but even then it’s slightly galling that they can’t even be bothered to search the forum first to see if anyone has had a similar problem (and considering 75% of posts I reply to are “I can’t get the code to work” and are a result of people not following the TWO STEPS it takes…. no no, must stay calm…).

Suffer fools gladly.



Where did that phrase come from anyway? Ohh the bible you say?


“Who, in the history of the world, ever did suffer fools gladly? Well, Shakespeare did, obviously. Since he gave them so many roles, he must have liked having them around. Others, less great, may enjoy fools as part of the human comedy, perhaps bearing in mind that all of us are fools sometimes, some of us fools often. In fact, I live in hope of reading someday an obituary that says: “He was wise and talented, greatly accomplished, and much admired, above all for his ability to suffer fools gladly.” “