How to ask a good question?
· How to ask a good question?
Does it really matter how to ask a question? Definitely! Asking the question in the right way will increase your chance of getting a good answer, which can be useful for the rest of TibiaQA community. It will also help you avoid answers with lots of misleading information.
Step 1: Before asking
- Search: You can use the search function to try to find the answer to your question. Duplicated questions don't help, as it is better to centralize all the answers in only one thread, allowing people to find all the answers to a specific question in one single place. Please, take into account that duplicated questions will be closed
- Hints: When typing the question on the title box, related questions will be displayed above it. Pay a look, maybe the answer is already available!
- Leverage! If find that your question does not appear amongst the search and hinted questions' results, you might still use some information from those results to enrich and improve your own question.
Step 2: Provide the summary for the question in one sentence
Good summary of the question is one of the most important part if you want to get an adequate answer. Users can see the summary of our question first and because of it each user decides if they want to take their time to continue reading.
- Background: The questions should always be Tibia-related, as this is a Tibia-based fansite
- Formulation: Always formulate the title as a question (as this is a Questions and Answers website)
- Goal: The goal of the title should be to make someone understand the global idea of the of your question with a few words
- To the point! You should try to do the question as succinct and clear as possible
Step 3: Provide more details for the question
Below you will find many points to guide you on how to write a good question. Some are crucial, however not all of them need to fit necessarily in one question. Use them wisely to write the best question ever!
- Content: Use the description box to provide more details about your question. You should look for a good compromise and balance between elaboration, quality and quantity
- Elaboration: Dedicate the necessary time to explain with a good level of detail and care, and to expand on your idea
- Quality: On top of elaborating, try to bring into the explanation the key information. Avoid redundancies, and try to find the right words
- Quantity: Try to not write too much, just the right amount of information for the people to understand the question and the context. Manage the quantity of information
- Trigger: It is nice to explain how you got to ask yourself that given question. This can be a short introduction before getting into the question, or a clarification after you have formulated it. This addition can help others relate to your question and see how the answer can be put to use within the game
- Research: If possible, add information to show what you already know about the answer, and how that information does not satisfy your question. It shows that you have made your research and it can help people to give you a better answer by skipping the path of investigation you’ve already taken. It can also guide them in understanding better the scope of your question
- Uniqueness: Many questions can look the same if you don’t add specific information that helps differentiate your inquiry from the others. Add the necessary key information to help make your question unique
- Timelessness: It is required to ask questions that won’t have a different answer over time. Try to formulate your question in a way that enables them to last
- Revision: Once you’ve written your question down, take your time to read it from beginning to end. Sometimes you might even feel to rewrite it to capture your idea best!
- Edition: Don't be afraid to edit your question later on. Sometimes after some hours we find that word we were looking for or a much better way to express what we were trying to say in the first place. Additionally, even if English is your first language, nowadays we have many corrector tools to help you correct typos and other errors. That shows effort in writing up your question and will make it more understandable
- Disclaimer: When you feel your question might be misunderstood, and you need to give contextual information, but you don't want to pollute the question with these peripheral clarifications, you can use a disclaimer with italics. Try to make it succinct
- Use the editing tools: Bullet points, colours, underlines... There are many tools available that can help you with the structure of your question. A better structure helps others to understand much better the information that you present
- Pictures: Do not hesitate to use pictures to complement your idea. A picture is worth a thousand words! You can also use tables, formulas, or any other resources that you consider that will help
- Do not overuse the tools and pictures: In contrast to the above, do not make an overuse of colors and highlights, as that might trivialize the purpose of these tools and confuse the readers! Pictures should also only be added to add necessary context or information, but should not be used to make question "look pretty"
Step 4: Add tags
Tags are kind of keywords. It’s useful for dividing questions into different categories and helpful for other users who are looking for questions belonging to a specific category. Correct tags are also really helpful if you want people with knowledge of a particular filed to answer your question. You will need to add at least one and no more than five tags to your question.
Step 5: Select the best answer
As an author of the question, you get to choose the best answer. Once you have received an answer that you are satisified with click on the check icon displayed next to every answer in your question. If you have enough reputation points, you can also vote answers up and down to indicate whether they are useful or not. By voting and choosing the best answers, you are helping to keep the useful posts at the top and have them highlighted. This helps other users viewing this question quickly find the best answers.
See also: What makes a good question? [Meta TibiaQA]