No. of Recommendations: 25
Of course this has been said many times before, but the problems seems to grow ...

Since this group insists on the right to post 90% plus off topic, maybe the path of least resistance is to start another group that posts on topic. Great, fine, everybody loves to discuss world events here, I give up, it's time to move.

Imagine a group where almost every topic is about FI/RE, and there are only 20 or 30 new posts per day ... sounds pretty good, huh? That is where this group would be if the OT barrage stopped.

So, who wants a new group? Maybe the "Retire Early Home Page Renaissance", or such. I'll start trying to figure out how to make this happen with the MF chat lords in case there's interest.
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 37
You've posted 4 times before this to the Retire Early Board, 2 were marginally on topic, the other two were definitely off. Do you have a question? We'd be happy to answer it. How about some hints on how to achieve early retirement. We'd like to hear that, too. Complaining when you have never contributed is pretty pathetic.

arrete - member since 1/00
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 35
russg writes,

Of course this has been said many times before, but the problems seems to grow ...

Since this group insists on the right to post 90% plus off topic, maybe the path of least resistance is to start another group that posts on topic. Great, fine, everybody loves to discuss world events here, I give up, it's time to move.

Imagine a group where almost every topic is about FI/RE, and there are only 20 or 30 new posts per day ... sounds pretty good, huh? That is where this group would be if the OT barrage stopped.


Oh come on. You're an IT professional. You should be able to read the board in "threaded mode" and skip the off topic posts.

intercst

Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 4
Thank you, I knew I would get this response and just wondered how long it would take.

I have posted on topic in many other groups when I could help, since you had time to check my record I'm sure you've seen that. My total postings are roughly 20 in 3+ years - guess I'm just not as smart as you. As a matter of fact, this is the only group to which I've ever posted off topic - guess I too got caught up in all the excitement here.

I lurk here because there are always quality posts and there are always posters who answers questions better than I could. Guess I have now lost my lurking priveleges because of my last post, sorry, I'll just log off with my tail between my legs.

Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 4
russg writes,

Thank you, I knew I would get this response and just wondered how long it would take.

I have posted on topic in many other groups when I could help, since you had time to check my record I'm sure you've seen that. My total postings are roughly 20 in 3+ years - guess I'm just not as smart as you. As a matter of fact, this is the only group to which I've ever posted off topic - guess I too got caught up in all the excitement here.

I lurk here because there are always quality posts and there are always posters who answers questions better than I could. Guess I have now lost my lurking priveleges because of my last post, sorry, I'll just log off with my tail between my legs.


No need to do that.

I went back and read your first 4 posts and recommended two of them. We need more folks like you to even things up in the OT political debates. <grin>

intercst
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 5
The catharsis taking place here in OT discussions relating to current events is a healthy process for all of us. Vocalizing fear, anger, grief, shock, etc. is one of the best ways to work through these feelings. The support of others experiencing similar reactions helps each of us deal with the trauma. I have concentrated on these OT discussions since Sept. 11 and have been encouraged by the patriotism and determination expressed by so many. I find the contributions to this board to be the most intelligent, interesting, and enlightening of any on TMF regardless of topic. As events unfold I hope all the regular posters will continue to share their thoughts.

Gratefully,

Nanajam
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 4
Since this group insists on the right to post 90% plus off topic, maybe the path of least resistance is to start another group that posts on topic. Great, fine, everybody loves to discuss world events here, I give up, it's time to move.

This implies that you have some questions russg? I'm RE'd, at 31, feel free to ask away - will be glad to help if I can.

I've found the board useful, and definitely entertaining for both on topic and off topic issues.

For your reference, myself, and others have asked hundreds of on topic RE questions time and again, and those insightful discussions are all archived here on the board.

Unless there was something that you were unable to find?

Golfwaymore

Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 4
intercst said:

You should be able to read the board in "threaded mode" and skip the off topic posts.

(picture the above in italics)

russg answers:

I sometimes think the people who live here (the daily visitors) have no idea how us infrequent visitors operate. I almost always wind up in this folder via the "top 25" button. I try to use this as a time saver since I don't visit every day and typically have 10-15 minutes to browse.

But this strategy is hopeless because of all my "favorite" folders, most of which are individual stock folders, the top 25 rec'd posts are invariably in this folder, and 23 of them are off topic. So a theoretically nice shortcut offered by the Motley Fool is rendered useless by off topic posts.

I obviously have to overhaul my reading algorithm (and give threaded another try, although for some reason I found myself allergic to it the first time I tried it). Unless, of course, a new folder forms that is exclusively on topic, hey, now there's an idea! :-)

And, let's be real, us lurkers and infrequent visitors really are second class citizens on a site like this, as the Motley Fool's vested interest is keeping the most frequent visitors happy. Just the economic truth of the web world ... as I think about, the whole world!

Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 12
From golfwaymore:

This implies that you have some questions russg?

and:

Unless there was something that you were unable to find?


russg says:

I have a question and a comment, thanks in advance for your help. This is my once-a-quarter chance to be on this board for more than 15 minutes so I'm making the most of it. My question: How do you get stuff formatted (italics, bold) in these messages? Which FAQ should I track down?

My comment: What I am unable to easily find is wheat amongst the chaff. The most rec'd posts are the most useless re: FI/RE info - that strikes me as ironic, but I'm obviously in the minority there. I come to this folder looking for answers to questions that I don't know to ask. I come searching for new insights that I would never have thought to consider. I hope to find completely new perspectives on both the technical and emotional side of RE.

I bother writing this since more than one response asked "what is your question?". My answer is that I don't know! Do I know everything about RE? I DON'T KNOW!? Am I going to be surprised by somebody else's feelings about it? I DON'T KNOW! I'm sure none of you meant to imply that this was a folder with primarily a question and answer format?

Sigh, I currently have no riveting insights or perpsectives to offer, in fact, since this board has been around so long, and there have been so many high quality posts in the past, each week fewer people do have original thoughts, feelings, or new twists to offer. That's probably why there are so many off topic posts.

As I have found myself saying before (bad sign!), thanks again to all thoughtful on-topic posters, I have certainly gained more than I have given.

Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 4
russg asks,

I have a question and a comment, thanks in advance for your help. This is my once-a-quarter chance to be on this board for more than 15 minutes so I'm making the most of it. My question: How do you get stuff formatted (italics, bold) in these messages? Which FAQ should I track down?

For Italics, just put "<" "I" ">" (without the quotes) at the start of the string you want in italics. Then end with "<" "/" "I" ">" to shut off the italics mode.

For boldface type, just substitute a "b" for "i".

I bother writing this since more than one response asked "what is your question?". My answer is that I don't know! Do I know everything about RE? I DON'T KNOW!? Am I going to be surprised by somebody else's feelings about it? I DON'T KNOW! I'm sure none of you meant to imply that this was a folder with primarily a question and answer format?

Sigh, I currently have no riveting insights or perpsectives to offer, in fact, since this board has been around so long, and there have been so many high quality posts in the past, each week fewer people do have original thoughts, feelings, or new twists to offer. That's probably why there are so many off topic posts.


Exactly! If all we talked about the "4% rule" and SEPP withdrawals, the old timers would be bored to tears -- that is, if they were still here at all.

intercst



Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 13
russg said,

I lurk here because there are always quality posts and there are always posters who answers questions better than I could. Guess I have now lost my lurking priveleges because of my last post, sorry, I'll just log off with my tail between my legs.

If you're looking for good information about FIRE, but don't really want to wade through the 53000+ posts to this board, there's some things you can do to get a sense of the topics. Here's some suggestions:

1. Read the FAQ (top left corner of this message board).

2. Go to "Threaded" mode, select "Collapse All", and page through looking for those threads with the highest number of recommendations. Start back at the beginning when the board was first founded (message #1) and there were fewer OT posts.

3. Go to "Best of" and search for the most highly recommmended posts since the board was founded. Unfortunately, this isn't a very effective way of doing this.

4. Pick your favorite REHP posters, go to their profiles, and list their previous 99 posts. Read the ones that sound interesting. If you'd like a list of posters I found worth reading, here's a post that I did a while back thanking a number of people for what I've learned since reading the board.

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=14111719

5. Here are some representative FIRE posts you might be interested in to whet your appetite. These are certainly not the best posts on the board, they're just some that I could find easily. I'd be interested in knowing if this is the kind of information you're looking for. Here are the posts, in no particular order:

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=15733947
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=15693559
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=15559305
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=15216828
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=15622668
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=12578710
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=12298938
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=14149487

What we really need is to to put specific links to "classic" FIRE posts in the FAQ, but it would take a lot of time to go through all of the 53000 and growing posts, and then to cut and paste the URLs into an update FAQ document. I considered doing that, but now that I'm RE'd, I don't seem to have the time for it. But if some of the regulars would each like to take a group of say 5000 posts and make a list of the ones that were "classics", I'd be willing to participate. Any takers?

Hope this helps.

bill2975
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 2
Of course this has been said many times before, but the problems seems to grow ...

I don't see the problem. Just read the posts in threaded mode and skip the OT ones. (I use a 56k modem and have no problem)
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 3
Sigh, I currently have no riveting insights or perpsectives to offer, in fact, since this board has been around so long, and there have been so many high quality posts in the past, each week fewer people do have original thoughts, feelings, or new twists to offer. That's probably why there are so many off topic posts.

And this is exactly why, rather than repeatedly rehashing technical discussions, we discuss world and national events with periodic insights about how those events might affect saving, investing, and ultimately RE. (i.e. nationalized medicine -> drug company investments/health care during RE, war -> defense investments/preserving capital, terrorism -> safe places to live in RE, etc...)
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 3
What's an off-topic post? When you're retired, you sit around and discuss politics, world events, etc. What's wrong with that?

Anyway a lot of that stuff affects directly or indirectly your life, and your FI/RE, know it or not.
Chooey
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 6
I skip more than 95% of the posts on this board. I use the threaded mode.

After a while, you get to know most of the personalities on this board. Feel free to skip the posts written by those who basically post filler material.

Final tip, usually, a good post will be followed by 3 to 5 good responses. After the fifth response, the orignial question is not addressed and it's just BS after that.
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 6
OT posts are a bain to many regulars on these boards -- many similar compliants appear on the LBYM board as well.

Some boards I frequent are decisively on-topic (such as Index Funds), but many contain a large variety of OT posts.

It's not going to stop.

Many people see this as a community beyond the subject at hand -- they look forward to communicating with others on lots of topics -- often beyond what the board was meant for.

Is it a problem? Well, sort of.

But the best solution is to ask that anyone who posts an OT post to mark it as such. OT should preface any subject line that is not on point. Those who are not interested in OT posts can simply skip them.

CPAScott
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 1
My OT routine:

I list this as one of my favorite boards.

When I see that an inordinately high no. of posts have accrued since my last login, I'm "forewarned" that it's OT Time (v. Tee Time) ;-)

So I view in threaded mode, see what looks interesting, pop in for a look, and either read further or scram. Or, I may check out the "high rec" posts or author specific ones.

The larger issue is if/when folks forget to preface w/ the "OT" disclaimer, and that's been pretty darn good.

John
PS- For you "problem solvers" if you subscribe to the "Ask why 7 times" rule, go back and run that test on the OT threads and you'll be surprised how many truly revert to ON topic, IMHO.
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 12
Author: russg Date: 10/15/01 9:33 PM Number: 53318
Since this group insists on the right to post 90% plus off topic, maybe the path of least resistance is to start another group that posts on topic. Great, fine, everybody loves to discuss world events here, I give up, it's time to move.

Imagine a group where almost every topic is about FI/RE, and there are only 20 or 30 new posts per day ... sounds pretty good, huh? That is where this group would be if the OT barrage stopped.


FI/RE is a lot more complex than than simply having enough dollars. You may not realize it, but things (everything from personal relationships to political issues) affect you much differently after you take an early retirement than they did before.

I think psychological aspects of early retirement may be of equal importance as financial aspects.

Russ
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 38
You know, I genuinely don't understand why some folks seem to fairly burn with indignation at off-topic posts. I mean, they must know how to read the boards in "threaded" mode. They must know how to refrain from clicking on posts that are clearly marked "OT" (or maybe they can't refrain? is that it? it's an impulse control disorder or a frontal lobe problem?). Yet, despite their knowledge of how to navigate the boards, they simply can't resist sputtering with outrage whenever they see that "OT" designation.

Which brings me to my theories.

1. People who shriek about "OT" posts are maniacal control-freaks who organize their freezers by type of frozen item, who always have the toilet paper rolling off the top of the roll, and who designate a Topic Du Jour at the dinner table, throwing food in the face of anyone who dares deviate from it.

"Tonight's Topic Du Jour: Rousseau, pedant or peasant? Discuss."
"Dad, can you pass the potat - "
"THAT IS NOT RELEVANT TO THE TOPIC DU JOUR!"
SPLAT

2. People who shriek about "OT" posts are embittered and lonely souls who sit in their poorly-heated apartments in ratty-ass slippers and mutter to themselves all night long about "kids these days" and "what's the world coming to" and "why when I was young," and who believe that the members of TMF boards have installed cameras in their apartments and are watching their every move, the "OT" designation actually being a secret code known only to their tormentors.

01010101 OT = KILL 01010101

3. [My personal favorite] People who shriek about "OT" posts are in fact masters of irony, postmodern deconstructionists who are implicitly critiquing the form of the post even as they employ it as a means of self-expression, pointing as they do to the multiple and frequently contradictory meanings inherent in any type of discourse, their subtle wit evident in the fact that by making a post to complain about off-topic posting, they are themselves making an off-topic post.

bookgrrrl
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 9
When you have your retirement money invested in index funds and you are a long term buy and hold kind of guy there is only so many times you talk about 72(t)SEPP withdrawals. If you've figured out your health insurance and you haven't ever worked for a private company and hence have no stock options it's hard to relate to that also. So, I'm sorry I post off topic but I am retired early and early on in this message board we talked a lot about SEPP withdrawals. My eyes still open up when Intercst or the Badger post something about investments or withdrawals but my life is not all that complicated. I put everything in index funds and now I'm just holding tight hoping all the Fed's lowering of interest rates and all this terrorism stuff eventually ends happily. So, if I post off topic it's only cause I want to continue to be a part of this board but I've told my story and I'm sure that a lot of people get tired of redundancy. - Art
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
Exactly! If all we talked about the "4% rule" and SEPP withdrawals, the old timers would be bored to tears -- that is, if they were still here at all.

intercst


Exactamente' - Art



Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 38
Which brings me to my theories.

1. People who shriek about "OT" posts are maniacal control-freaks who organize their freezers by type of frozen item, who always have the toilet paper rolling off the top of the roll, and who designate a Topic Du Jour at the dinner table, throwing food in the face of anyone who dares deviate from it..
..blaah blaah blaaah and so on.


Hmm. Quite the rant bookgrrl. Perhaps those who are tired of all the OT posts are just simply hard working stiffs who would like to get a clue about how to stop working so hard, without having to suffer through all this political noise that those who have nothing to do care to generate. Yes, some of it is beneficial, though most of it is pure waste of bandwidth and fluffing of ego.

Personally, I really miss the old community, before it caught the eye of so many through Post of the Day. I rarely bother to visit anymore, since the noise to useful ratio is rather large, and I have determined that my biggest time saving is obtained through ignoring this board for the most part. While to some extent I took umbrage to the original post in this thread, I take even more to yours. Name calling is never productive.

InParadise,
Who certainly is better qualified at answering the OT posts than those on topic, but typically no longer wastes her time.
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 2
I like to see some other topics discussed on this board. It's nice to see and read discussion on non-FIRE topics from people whose opinions you trust.

mdotlich
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 3
bookgrrl wrote: 1. People who shriek about "OT" posts are maniacal control-freaks

InParadise retorts: Perhaps those who are tired of all the OT posts are just simply hard working stiffs who would like to get a clue about how to stop working so hard

Uh-oh. Cat fight. (I mean that in an OT sort of way)

InParadise,
Who certainly is better qualified at answering the OT posts than those on topic, but typically no longer wastes her time.


Ironic, aint it? <grin>

Golfwaymore

Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
90% plus off topic

Deja Vu all over again:

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=13429692&sort=threaded

That thread taught me to stay out of discussions like this... ;-)

Peace! (Personal wish, not an anti-war sentiment!)

Draggon
Print the post Back To Top