I can't keep up with them, the brand new users who have 1 rep. There's too many, they're swarming the site and often their questions consist of one or two lines with no context. All the following questions were posted on January 10, 2016 by 1 rep users:
- Is it proper to say "Turn right right here"?
- Do we use the present or the past after "when" in a conditional sentence?
- Word for someone who makes careful word choices
- What is the correct word for 'worrylessly'?
5 hours later...
- 'Are you really want to quit ?' vs 'Do you really want to quit ?' (this one does have context, but there's no research)
- How can I differentiate a gender to word cousin
(I'm sure I've missed a few others)
This looks a bit suspicious to me, is it possible that someone is creating these new accounts to give EL&U some much needed sap?
I know for a fact that some very high-rep users/mods do create sockpuppets to test things out, is the above an example of that? See: I am a sockpuppet, may I exist if I have a real purpose?
I've probably had a half dozen or so alternate accounts over the course of the site. They're useful sometimes: testing bugs that only show up at low rep levels, reminding yourself what the site "feels like" for someone with only the basic abilities, maintaining a highly unnatural q/a ratio... That said, I always treat these as disposable accounts, and some of them have been removed (either automatically or via mod intervention) when I crossed a line somewhere - you should never assume that a sockpuppet is "protected" if you're actively using multiple accounts on one site; ...
July 19 2010 Shog9♦
Why don't the newcomers know about ELL?
My second concern is why are all these new users coming to EL&U in the first place? Why aren't they posting their off-topic and low-quality questions on ELL? I'm not suggesting the questions posted on 10 Jan should be migrated, but I'm confused as to why these users seemingly have no awareness that ELL exists.
Why not just ignore the low-quality posts?
While this seems the easier, friendlier and more civil approach, this will create a gateway effect. Once a user has their off-topic question answered, and this includes answers that are either posted as comments or edited and embedded in the OP, you are reinforcing that behaviour. Think of Pavlov's experiments, and learned behavior. It's the same thing, after all why do users keep posting answers? Because they receive 10 points, and don't tell me its not gratifying. It's exactly the same mechanism. Likewise, a user who regularly receives an answer to his/her off-topic question will learn to repeat that behaviour.
If LQQs are allowed to proliferate, the more experienced linguists and ‘experts’ will not stick around. Compared to two years ago, the old vanguard is nearly halved. Wonderful contributors such as, Robusto, Barrie England, medica, RegDwight, NoHat, JSBձոգչ and oerkelens are simply not posting any more. I don't want ELU to become the next Yahoo! Answers. But it will do, if we don't demand a "minimum" standard from everyone.