Tell us what's happening

I’ve seen this on several posts, in which the user hasn’t noticed or realised there is a space to describe what’s going on or hindering them on solving a problem, thus the space is left blank and replies need to request for information.

Would it be worthwhile adding a small “Describe your problem in short” input box and have it set to required so people aren’t constantly requesting more info and the OP gets help sooner rather than later. I’ve seen some topics spiral into threads because the user is trying to describe the issue via replies instead of the originally intended space that they are given when they create a topic from within a challenge.

Example:

Tell us what’s happening:
Describe your issue in detail here.
[blank]

HI @doki !

There are cases where some might not notice it but in my experience a lot of people seeking help, create their post in a hurry and choose to just post their code.
I think a lot of people think if they just post code, it will be self explanatory what the issue is.
Sometimes it is, but as you pointed out most times it leads to us asking for more information.

Unfortunately, it wouldn’t stop the OP from just typing in “Help me”, “I’m stuck”, or "I don’t understand ".

Yeah, I have been in plenty of those threads as well.

I don’t think the input idea is bad, but it might not solve the issue as intended.
Curious to hear what the other mods and staff think though

But this is a good topic to discuss and has been brought up in the past on how to get users to provide more information in their posts :slight_smile:

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We’ve talked about this same thing on this Discord off and on again.

I think that the new curriculum has brought a ton of people to freeCodeCamp, which is great.

However, the quality of questions has gone down on the forum, unfortunately. There are a few people who adamently refuse to ask questions and instead treat other users like a pop machine of answers (which is rude IMHO, but not sanguine to my point here) but largely I think people are overlooking that part of the auto generated post or don’t understand why it is there.

I think that largely new learners don’t realize that 1) providing more information helps us better help them and 2) trying to ask good questions helps their learning. It’s easy to overlook that part of the auto generated post or to be intimidated by the prospect of asking a question.

I do feel like the fact that this is wide-spread indicates that a UX improvement can be made, but I’m not sure the best way to do that.

I also think that we should perhaps provide an article or something on how to ask good questions or the benefits of asking questions. We chatted about that idea a lot on the Discord.

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This is so on point. I am thinking about stopping to review the code for posts without specific questions.
I will just ask people to provide questions instead. And I will provide info only if and when questions asked.
When I am trying to help people who didn’t ask stuff, its often more time-consuming for me. And my hint/advice will be far from perfect also.
Just my opinion. based on my experience here.

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the pre written post has a limit of about 8000 characters, asking users to write more before pre-filling the forum post means that it would increase the cases in which the code can’t be automatically included

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