More options for "Your topic is similar to..."

(Compa) #1

This automatic search feature generated when you create a topic is very helpful for preventing repeat threads, but I feel like it could be expanded upon. It only seems to show 4-5 threads at a time, and doesn’t have a way to show more than that. Have you thought of adding a “more” button underneath to pull up ALL the threads, or to enable it to open a separate window that auto-searches the thread title? Obviously you could still search the old fashioned way but the whole point of this feature is to have it for people who DON’T search, so I feel like the easier for them to see similar threads, the better.

FYI, I DID use the search feature before posting this, and found multiple threads about improving the similar topic generator. None of them seem to mention the feature I’m asking for though, it’s mostly about search algorithms from what I can tell.

(Jeff Wong) #2

Hey, welcome :slight_smile:

As for the feature itself, I think it’s fine as it is now. The notification is there to inform you “hey something exists that looks like what you’re typing” with a few examples as an incentive to search for similar content. If they’re not going to go search for more similar topics themselves, why would they be more likely to click on the proposed “see more” link?

(Compa) #3

If they’re not going to go search for more similar topics themselves, why would they be more likely to click on the proposed “see more” link?

By that logic, should the similar topics feature even exist at all if they won’t read them? I just want a way to encourage more searches through positive reinforcement, instead of negative. I come from WaniKani and I see all too frequently that the response to repeat threads is a long-time member will copy and paste a link to every single thread like the new thread, in an effort to publicly shame OP into not posting repeat threads again. With a button to bring the rest of this information up automatically, the user could more easily see just how frequent these posts are without getting a lecture.

(Jeff Wong) #4

I think it’s fair to not expect a user to read the entire forum history before posting a new topic. The feature on its own is useful because it gives a dialogue during writing that maybe there already exists a topic about this, and to try one of those.

If the user isn’t interested at that point in doing some reading to see if there is a topic better suited for their post, a “see more” button isn’t going to save them.

(Jeff Atwood) #5

Adding a single link doesn’t necessarily hurt anything, though.

(Vaping Community) #6

If it’s matching the titles, chances are the similar topic / info / question / answer could be buried in a topic with a more obscure title, right?

It’s the nature of the beast, users want to ask questions / start a discussion / get answers NOW, similar topics will always happen, just merge them or allow them to happen, I can’t see it hurting anything

(Jeff Wong) #7

I suppose that’s true. I just want to understand what the benefit is.

Thinking more about it, if the link takes them to the search page with the query, it could be a beneficial handhold to “how to search here, 101”, but I’m otherwise not sure why someone would be interested in a list of topics beyond the first few.

(Vaping Community) #8

I think you made a great point, if there are numerous topics on a subject or one huge topic on a subject, a quick search should yield results, if they can’t be bothered to even search they will ignore the “Your Topic is Similar Too” dialog too.

Sometimes people just want to start a topic for themselves, I guess they see it as bringing their need above others? or the quick fix.

Of course, an extra button won’t hurt and maybe for some, alert them to the search function like you said, which could reduce some of the issues.

Edit: Maybe even a “Search for (title)” Link at the top of the box could work


Personally, I find this dialog box to come up sometimes when my topic is nothing like the five suggested topics. I was also wondering if this feature could be narrowed down somehow? (Better focussed?)

(I too come from the WaniKani forums.)