Community Professionals Get their Own Style?

Guru ,
May 10, 2012 May 10, 2012

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So, in a thread, a Community Professional gets a style that looks identical or at least very similar to a correct answer and they get their name in red.

Accepting any reasons that a CP might need to be distinguished in some way I don't like the implication that an answer is a correct answer simply because a CP offers it.  OK, so style them differently but not it like this.

Sometimes a CP might be contributing to discussion where an answer isn't needed or they may be asking for a bit more clarification.

There, I said it!

Martin

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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I am with Martin on this, hi Martin.

The threads have become rather messy, with both time and effort being wasted on our having to disregard, or should I say undistinguish, what should not be distinguished from the rest in the first place.

The same applies to Employees.

Whatever anyone wants to obtain, the text under the Avatars must be quite sufficient.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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That's not actually the case. A correct answer within the thread is marked with green side borders, but is not filled in white unless the answer was provided by one of us. The quoted correct answer within the question is always filled in white, irrespective of who it came from, but that's simply because the Adobe corporate styling keeps everything in shades of gray. Usernames don't change, but we do have colors for the classes of membership.

See http://forums.adobe.com/message/4395537#4395537 (correct answer from a normal user) and http://forums.adobe.com/message/4394216#4394216 (correct answer from an ACP).

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LEGEND ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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Nit picking the terminology aside, Martin is right - there is a SIGNIFICANT differentiation and in fact a Community Professional looks just like an Employee.

No disrespect intended for the Community Professionals, who do a great job, but maybe a slightly lighter shade of gray than we peon users get would be more appropriate, not employee orange and white.

-Noel

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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To elaborate on the first post, I believe the least messy and easiest read is obtained by avoiding differently coloured posts as distinction between posters, in other words no special background colour, neither for employees nor for community professionals, nor for silly posters, nor for ...

As has been said many times, these are user forums, and both employees and community professionals, at least predominantly, partake on a voluntary basis.

As I said, all we need to know (and maybe more) is already shown in connexion with the avatar.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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Jacob Bugge wrote:

To elaborate on the first post, I believe the least messy and easiest read is obtained by avoiding differently coloured posts as distinction between posters, in other words no special background colour, neither for employees nor for community professionals, nor for silly posters, nor for ...

As has been said many times, these are user forums, and both employees and community professionals, at least predominantly, partake on a voluntary basis.

As I said, all we need to know (and maybe more) is already shown in connexion with the avatar.

I couldn't agree more withi this. And I do hope we'll soon get back what used to be connected to one's avatar...

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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The new typography in that forum is atrocious.

The so-called Community Professional decoration is ludicrous.

Adobe, Adobe …

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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Hi Kurt.

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Guru ,
May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

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I'm not bothered that ACPs get some kind of way of distinguishing their posts.  What I don't like is that the default styles give an impression of superiority to other posts.  If a post has prominence in a thread it has to be based on the accuracy of its content, the contribution to discussion and/or the value to the OP.

Traditionally forums are places that are Egalitarian.  An environment where people are encouraged to participate in discussion on the basis that they are prepared to share knowledge, discovery, skill and ideas.  What sets people apart is open contribution to the community and the value of what is said.

Whilst I don't like the way that ACP post appear to have an elavted status because of the styling, I o appreciate the comments they make which are often authoritative.  I prefer to make my own mind up on that.

I think that one way that I fiund helpful to identify and way the potential contribution of a poster was to note the time on the forums and number of posts.  So now the ACPs have this special position emphasised by a unique style and others have no immediate way of emphasising their own commitment to the community.

I'm not knocking ACPs.  I just think that if the forums represent the Adobe Community why not make every effirt to maintain a sense of community across its membership?

Martin

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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I agree with Martin's points. The previous way of distinguishing "community professionals" was about the right level and did not give undue visual preference to their comments over those from other frequent posters who have equal or greater knowledge.

For a few reasons, whoever approved this redesign needs to think again.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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In addition to what has been said already, one important aspect is that the term Community Professional denotes that the Community Member in question has made a certain kind of contributions in connexion with one or more specific Adobe applications relevant to specific forums, but it is shown in every post in every thread in every forum, regardless of the actual level of knowledge and experience relevant in that connexion.

Apart from possibly misleading others, this may also put an unreasonable pressure on the Community Professional, especially when posting as one of the less experienced users.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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Jacob Bugge wrote:

In addition to what has been said already, one important aspect is that the term Community Professional denotes that the Community Member in question has made a certain kind of contributions in connexion with one or more specific Adobe applications relevant to specific forums, but it is shown in every post in every thread in every forum, regardless of the actual level of knowledge and experience relevant in that connexion.

Absolutely correct.

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Guru ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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That's a good point too Jacob (Hello to you too),

I think that Dave Merchant's post in this discussion actually makes my point.  Whether these are Adobe's muted tones or not that post stands out markedly from everything else on the page.  It doesn't compete with the darker grays, the avatars, the Blue buttons or the Adobe logo.  It just pops out and when you (I) first open the discussion it leaps out of the page.  Adding the red title also adds emphasis.  The fact that it is in this discussion also relates to my point because there isn't really a definitive or correct "answer" but the style alone gives that one post prominence that suggests seniority or legitimacy in some non-egalitarian way.

In my mind, a person's status (any person) on any board comes from their knowledge, skill  competence and accuracy, persistence, kindness and generosity.  This will probably apply most to the person's own area of expertise.  I also think that for me, the most immediate way that I have always found helpful in weighing up the value of a single post is to take a look at the number of posts made.  Hmmm, I'm probably an exception to my own rule there as I have a tendency to post drivel although, it is kind and generous drivel I hope 😉

Martin

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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Adobe are going to have to be very careful not to alienate those of us with similar or greater expertise than posters with the "community professional" badge (some of whom only seem to show up to help when it's the time of year for their badge renewal!).

If you give excessive prominence to those folks, and so make others' contributions seem less persuasive or valuable, you'll find creative people can be... creative!


John


"Thousands of posts here, some sharp, most intended to be helpful"

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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In my opinion, instead of stressing the artificial and meaningless castes differences in the forums (the old "community expert/employee/member" badges by out names is all that is needed), it would be more useful that moderators were identified as such by a similar badge. There is no reason for keeping them secret; and it is a normal practice in other non-Adobe forums I frequent.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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Post counts and points are coming back, and your activity right now is still aggregating towards your scores. I agree that many people use post counts as an indication of who knows most about a topic, but that's not always accurate. The forums certainly do have a great bunch of frequent-posters who know their chosen products very well, but equally you will find engineers with very low post counts dropping by to help with specific questions - they may not say much but what they do say should be correct, as they wrote the program! The points system is intended to help differentiate the 'expertise' of regular users, as you only gain points for helpful and correct answers, but it doesn't give much insight for new or infrequent visitors.

I also agree that  ACPs don't have to know more than anyone else in a thread, but statistically they do know more than the average, simply because the ACP program selects only the best people from the developer community. We also have a responsibility to provide the most reliable answers we can - for example I use Flex but I'm nowhere close to being an expert in it, so I don't answer questions in those forums.

To clarify, there are currently four groups of people on here with some form of special status: employees, ACPs, hosts (moderators) and administrators. These groups are not firewalled; many are in more than one category,  not all ACPs or employees are hosts, and vice-versa. Hosts are not identified by default as  in the past people bombarded them with  messages.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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"the ACP program selects only the best people from the developer community"

Nonsense. "Some of" would be fair. But the point is that posts by "community professionals" are being given undue prominence by this shambolic forum upgrade. Hey ho.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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I didn't say it selected all the best people, but Adobe is clear that those it does allow into the ACP program are recognized experts in their fields. It's not at all easy to get in, and we all have to re-qualify every year. Bear in mind there are millions of people using Adobe software on a daily basis, but we can fit all the ACPs into one room at MAX with space for dancing. We're proud of our membership, I won't apologize for that.

Personally I don't care if my posts are gray or white, but Adobe have decided on the layout and I'm simply trying to explain the reasoning.

johnbeardy wrote:

"the ACP program selects only the best people from the developer community"

Nonsense. "Some of" would be fair. But the point is that posts by "community professionals" are being given undue prominence by this shambolic forum upgrade. Hey ho.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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Don't bother - you clearly can't.

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Guru ,
May 13, 2012 May 13, 2012

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Dave Merchant wrote:

I didn't say it selected all the best people, but Adobe is clear that those it does allow into the ACP program are recognized experts in their fields. It's not at all easy to get in, and we all have to re-qualify every year. Bear in mind there are millions of people using Adobe software on a daily basis, but we can fit all the ACPs into one room at MAX with space for dancing. We're proud of our membership, I won't apologize for that.

I'm intrigued at the thought of a group of ACPs in a small room dancing.  My intention was never to call into question the value of the contribution of this group of people or to acknowledge that there should be some idicator of thier position.  I just think that doing this by adding the style to the whole post makes that post appear elevated in some way probably because it is very like a correct answer.

Dave Merchant wrote:

Personally I don't care if my posts are gray or white...

I think what I am saying is that I do.

Martin

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Mentor ,
May 14, 2012 May 14, 2012

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Why not do like in MS Answers Groups put yor title of authority beside the Picture ad name above

Here is example of mine.

How do I get a data series to become the x-axis in a chart? - Microsoft Answers.png

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 14, 2012 May 14, 2012

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We never see you in tartan here, Phillip.

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Mentor ,
May 14, 2012 May 14, 2012

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Differrent Picture of me. Actually newer. Last I tried I could not edit any thing in Profile kept getting error message.

Tried again and have upload the Tartan Image. As son as it's approved in abut 4 days I'll use it as my avatar image.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
May 14, 2012 May 14, 2012

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Then we shall hope that it represents none of the banned clans, Phillip.

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Mentor ,
May 14, 2012 May 14, 2012

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As far as I know the Jones Family I came from originated in England. However my Mother's side of the Family both the Fulcher's and the Harris' came  from Scottland. 

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