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How to respond to newbies
Authored by: bugmenotbarred on Aug 13, '10 01:59:15AM

This is mainly directed to oldr4ver, but it's also for all the other cranky people I've seen posting recently.

Not everyone is a "fanboy", dedicated to just Microsoft, or just Apple, or just Anything. Some of us like to use more than one computer and when we do, we often throw many operating systems into the mix. That's why we end up with problems like having to read Apple's DMG format on a foreign system.

And, yes, some people are newbies, but you don't have to insult them for asking questions on the "wrong" forum. How does that help the "IQ of the world"? I understand that you're mad at everyone for wasting your time by forcing you to read posts that you find idiotic. Congratulations, your petty-poopy tirade just extended the thread of idiocy.

There are so many better ways you could have handled this. May I demonstrate?

For example, you could gently point the newbies to where they can find more expert (and perhaps friendlier) advice. "Sorry, I don't know much about GNU/Linux, but I hear the folks at forums.debian.net are real nice."

Or, if you have the knowledge, you could share it with them, for example, "Well, in GNU/Linux, Apple's DMG files should automatically be readable from your desktop when you double-click on them. If not, run this command: sudo mount -t hfsplus -o loop thisisthefile.dmg /mnt, and it'll show up."

If you can't do either of those, the next best thing is to say nothing. That right, even though you see somebody who's such a noob that they don't even know who to ask for help, the correct action is to just let them be. Someday, you'll try something new (or at least I hope you will) and you'll appreciate it when people don't pounce on you for your mistakes.

--Bugsy



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