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Author Topic: Newbie, Jr Members, Members suffering from merit-phobia: Explanations and Advice  (Read 1009 times)
Sir Cross
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March 12, 2018, 11:57:16 PM
Last edit: March 13, 2018, 12:20:45 AM by Sir Cross
 #21

I find this to be a little ethnocentric. I see that you're just trying to help others be able to post constructively, but this is at a disadvantage for those who grew up with a different native language. Ethnocentrism is where there is a belief that one ethic group or culture is superior to another. This is usually implied and done impassingly, as like every other racial comment. This treatment toward Eastern posters is an example of ethnocentrism.

I'm really glad you pointed out the "East vs. West" issue. This is usually dismissed because the users in this forum have their freedom of speech or to their own opinion. I won't deny it, there are in fact many shitposters coming from the East and (shamingly) from my own country. For someone who's born with a different native language other than english, it's going to be hard for them to construct sentences in the correct grammar. If they were to excel and post constructively, it's true that they may do better within their local boards which may lack sMerit sources. You see, this gives them minimal opportunity to contribute and participate in the forum if they were confined to their local boards.

Obviously, the "sir, dear" remark is a cultural barrier. This is being said by the Eastern because of their value of respect, and they do this out of habit because they got so used to it. A habit to one is offensive to another. So who should adjust here?

Perhaps this forum lacks a little cultural relativism. All cultures are worthy in their own right and are of equal value. Are the opinions of others no longer of value just because it is not properly constructed in English?


1. East vs. West
It is a common impression that most of the people spamming or shit-posting are from the low income countries in the eastern hemisphere. Indian, Indonesia, Thailand, Phillipines, Vietnam etc. To people from these countries, I'd say that its our own mistake that the west sees us as incompetent and lazy when we write incoherent sentences.
By showing our willingness to spend our time on making 1000 useless posts, we confirm that we are in fact useless. Its then natural to have disdain for such actions. Accusing the other person of racism then is no defence. If you really want to mount a defence, then do some real work and prove your worth.

This constant trend to use salutations  (Sir, Dear, Respected) is also a cultural difference. To you, it maybe normal to show respect to someone in a position of power over you, but as far as netiquette and western work culture is concerned, this is considered sycophancy/ ass-kissing. This is considered the hallmark of an incapable, scheming individual and not of respect. So avoid this like a plague. Instead, address people with a normal Mr./ Miss


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March 13, 2018, 03:01:58 AM
 #22

Quoting views of some members on the language issue

It is good that you are suggesting members to improve their writing skills and grammar. I see it in a different way. Most of us had different upbringings, we got different type of schooling , guidance and friends. Most of this was not under our control and our learning of everything (including English) was affected by this. I am fine with people being able to convey their message even if there are minor mistakes in the content. I consider myself as no expert either and it took me a lot of effort to reach current level. Everyone who has a positive attitude can improve their writing skills to some extent but drastic change is impossible.

For a native English speaker (like me) it's very easy to see what people write - especially since I spend time around young children and have to try to interpret what they write. Bad spelling and grammar comes more of an issue with other languages, if you get your word order wrong in English, for a lot of sentences, it can be inferred what you are saying. For people in another native language, it's probably more difficult to try to translate as English is a fairly forgiving language in itself.

I would personally have no issue in people who don't speak native English therefore to post in both langauges while they are still trying to perfect their English skills and it can then be translated from the original verson or someone could offer constructive critiscism on some of their spellings (and I doubt a moderator would delete such a post if someone has at least attempted to write the English version above - I've written in two languages before and it's not been deleted by a moderator).

Those views should be encouraging for any new member who wants to contribute to the forum. I am sure most users on the forum feel the same way too. There aren't many grammar nazis here. People who post useful content, even if their language isn't perfect, have always been appreciated.

It has only become a problem after the spam and repetitive threads running into 100+ pages. As a thumb-rule, those 100+ pages of repetitive bitcoin discussions is something every new member should avoid.

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March 13, 2018, 03:48:24 AM
 #23

Very well said. Good command of the English language would really go a long way in this forum nowadays. I think the racial overtones (or undertones) in this forum by long time and/or hero/legendary members are one of the barriers facing those who are not good in English. Most new members are in this for the money, and there's nothing wrong with that as long as forum rules and etiquette are followed. Begging for merits is kinda low for me. How you gain merits and increase your forum rank is fair game for everyone and I still believe, that in the bigger picture, most of the members here really give merits to those who deserve it.
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March 13, 2018, 03:57:26 AM
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 #24

This constant trend to use salutations  (Sir, Dear, Respected) is also a cultural difference.

Oh, is that a cultural thing? 75% of my inbox at any one time is full of people calling me "sir", but I'd assumed that these people were just taught to be ultra-polite when they were learning English (maybe due to a delay between the real world and instruction vis-à-vis shifting politeness standards over the last ~century).

The first few times people used unnecessary politeness like this on me, I found it amusing. I was thinking, "who do you think I am, the president? LOL." But I've now grown to associate it with clueless people...



As jackg mentioned, English is a fluid and forgiving language. Even on a pretty global forum like this, I only rarely see English so bad that I can't understand it at all. As long as you actually have some ideas to express, you should be fine. You should keep in mind that poor English is more difficult to read, though, so if you know that your English is imperfect, it'd be courteous to keep your text to-the-point, and to do some extra checking to minimize errors as much as possible. (I do the same when writing imperfectly in my second languages.)

A good recent example which comes to mind is zentdex's Where the merit pours. He made several English errors, but he was entirely understandable, and the post was overall a very good contribution.

The real problem is people posting nonsense just to post, with no real contribution to make or ideas to express. That's bad enough as-is, and poor English makes it even worse.

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March 13, 2018, 05:54:18 AM
 #25

I think the use of things like "sir" is the result of poor translation tools, and the writer using a specific word in their local language that does not translate well without proper context, which translation tools usually cannot do.

The association of people using the word "sir" with those who do not know what they are talking about is the result of a number of things:

1 - There is an extreme gap in the standard of living in places like Indonesia and affluent neighborhoods in the US. This means that not only is the $0.55 or so a low level member can earn from making one post is a lot of money (in terms of his standard of living), but also the time spent not posting in either learning about Bitcoin, the subject topic, or in making an english post in proper english is worth a lot in terms of what could have been paid for if this time was spent posting.

2 - We have rule 27 that says:
Quote
27. Using automated translation tools to post translated content in Local boards is not allowed.
This with the fact that there are a disportionate number of english speakers (as their primary language, and their 1st language), who have an in-depth understanding of Bitcoin, and actively contribute to Bitcoin (there appear to be a small number of people who speak Chinese who actively contribute to the bitcoin-dev mailing list, however the problem does not appear to be cause by those in/from China), means it is more difficult for non-english speakers to learn about Bitcoin. If this rule was removed, some users who spend a lot of time helping others might be willing to spend time in some of the local section, using translation tools, to help people learn about Bitcoin.

3 - The Indonesia local section is the 2nd largest local sub behind the Russia local sub, as measured by total posts, yet it does not have any kind of "beginners" nor "technical discussion" section (many other local subs do have these kinds of sections). This means that Indonesians who want to learn about Bitcoin do not have a forum to do so in their local language. It would probably be a good idea to add some kind of beginners section in Indonesia.

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March 13, 2018, 08:34:21 AM
 #26

Oh, is that a cultural thing? 75% of my inbox at any one time is full of people calling me "sir", but I'd assumed that these people were just taught to be ultra-polite when they were learning English (maybe due to a delay between the real world and instruction vis-à-vis shifting politeness standards over the last ~century).

The first few times people used unnecessary politeness like this on me, I found it amusing. I was thinking, "who do you think I am, the president? LOL." But I've now grown to associate it with clueless people...

Haha..This actually is such a ingrained thing that if a person in, say India, was to address his boss by his last/first name (as is the norm in western work environments), he'd be met with disbelief and it'd be taken as an offense.

Blame it on imperialism. The post-independence elites in most of the eastern societies made sure that the exclusivity established by British-era (Also fondly remembered as 'The Raj era' by Anglophiles.. Tongue) was continued to ensure a level of supremacy and control. The British themselves were inspired by the fabled pomp and grandeur of the Eastern Courts/ Durbars i guess.

The atmosphere at several MNCs out here has started to become much more liberating as addressing someone as "Sir" isn't encouraged anymore. The problem is that when dealing with any kind of public service or Govt. Machinery, you have to massage fragile egos by calling people with authority as "Sir".

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March 13, 2018, 08:43:18 AM
 #27

I think the use of things like "sir" is the result of poor translation tools, and the writer using a specific word in their local language that does not translate well without proper context, which translation tools usually cannot do.

You'd probably be surprised to know but there is hardly an equivalent to "Sir" in most native languages. There are of course salutations but they are mostly brotherly. Widespread use of honorifics like "Sir", "Saahab" etc. are completely imperial vestiges. "Sir", particularly, is not a shortcoming of translation tools.

3 - The Indonesia local section is the 2nd largest local sub behind the Russia local sub, as measured by total posts, yet it does not have any kind of "beginners" nor "technical discussion" section (many other local subs do have these kinds of sections). This means that Indonesians who want to learn about Bitcoin do not have a forum to do so in their local language. It would probably be a good idea to add some kind of beginners section in Indonesia.

That is why there is a lot scope for the locals to take the lead here and establish a truly healthy community. Its hard to believe there's no beginner's section at one of the largest community boards. I'd say again for the local members:

Quote
Alternatively, in your local forum, you could:

---> Translate some of the better posts from here (after taking due permission from the original poster)
---> Engage in discussion about setting up the infrastructure for bitcoin within your community. Like local groups, meetups etc.
---> Persuade people to actually care about the goal of financial access and equality for all and the importance of adoption.
---> Inform yourself about the scaling debate and be warned about the false marketing from other people making wild claims.
---> Inform yourself about Lightning Network, SegWit and encourage its usage.

But this should be done as an initiative by the speakers themselves. Doing it as a translation service would probably defeat the purpose.

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March 13, 2018, 09:44:43 AM
Merited by Foxpup (1)
 #28


6. Constantly uses unnecessary salutations "Dear Manager, Respected Manager, or my favorite Lauda Sir ".
7. Profusely apologises after every sentence. "Sorry if I am wrong", "Sorry again if i hurt someone". All of this with accompanied by the constant disebowelment of English is enough to irritate the hell out of most normal people.

This has always really annoyed me because it just comes across as insincere and it usually comes with some sort of begging or pleading when they've done something wrong. Please sir hilarious unban me ten accounts sir. I won't do it again sir. Please sir.



This constant trend to use salutations  (Sir, Dear, Respected) is also a cultural difference. To you, it maybe normal to show respect to someone in a position of power over you, but as far as netiquette and western work culture is concerned, this is considered sycophancy/ ass-kissing. This is considered the hallmark of an incapable, scheming individual and not of respect. So avoid this like a plague. Instead, address people with a normal Mr./ Miss

Well put. You don't need to call people Mr or Miss either. Just call people by their username.

3. But if the disdain takes the form of blatant name-calling and racial overtones (not undertones), I believe it is an explicit form of RACISM; eg. 3rd world monkeys, pajeet, etc.

This is when it goes too far and people start to show their true colours. Shitposting is annoying but it's unnecessary to start getting derogatory in racial terms.

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March 13, 2018, 10:01:06 AM
Last edit: March 13, 2018, 10:14:51 AM by theymos
Merited by amishmanish (2), vit05 (1)
 #29

1 - There is an extreme gap in the standard of living in places like Indonesia and affluent neighborhoods in the US. This means that not only is the $0.55 or so a low level member can earn from making one post is a lot of money (in terms of his standard of living), but also the time spent not posting in either learning about Bitcoin, the subject topic, or in making an english post in proper english is worth a lot in terms of what could have been paid for if this time was spent posting.

Whenever I see a stat like that, it makes me wonder why someone doesn't just hire a ton of these people. You'd think that even totally-unskilled people could be made productive enough to support paying them $3/hr or whatever. I'm sure there are real government-related and cultural barriers or someone would've done it already, but it still seems like a shame.

The vast majority of great things in the world, including things in the Bitcoin ecosystem, were created by a community consisting of maybe 15% of the world's population. It'd be truly fantastic if the remaining 85% of the world was made generally capable of similar achievements. If this somehow happened overnight, it'd be the greatest-ever step forward for humanity. So I am very happy to see people from poorer countries on this forum and in the Bitcoin ecosystem generally, acting with ambition. IMO Bitcoin was created in part to help break down the artificial barriers which are keeping these people from prosperity. Though no amount of this sort of thinking excuses those who choose to post garbage posts, for whatever reason. I hope that we can eventually reach a balance on the forum which will satisfy the forum's primary mission of enabling real discussion while also continuing to create opportunities for many people.

If auto-translation was allowed, people would be posting auto-translated ads all the time. Though if any of the local sections want to try out allowing it, I'd be OK with it.

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March 13, 2018, 10:39:59 AM
 #30

This constant trend to use salutations  (Sir, Dear, Respected) is also a cultural difference.

Oh, is that a cultural thing? 75% of my inbox at any one time is full of people calling me "sir", but I'd assumed that these people were just taught to be ultra-polite when they were learning English (maybe due to a delay between the real world and instruction vis-à-vis shifting politeness standards over the last ~century).

The first few times people used unnecessary politeness like this on me, I found it amusing. I was thinking, "who do you think I am, the president? LOL." But I've now grown to associate it with clueless people...



As jackg mentioned, English is a fluid and forgiving language. Even on a pretty global forum like this, I only rarely see English so bad that I can't understand it at all. As long as you actually have some ideas to express, you should be fine. You should keep in mind that poor English is more difficult to read, though, so if you know that your English is imperfect, it'd be courteous to keep your text to-the-point, and to do some extra checking to minimize errors as much as possible. (I do the same when writing imperfectly in my second languages.)

A good recent example which comes to mind is zentdex's Where the merit pours. He made several English errors, but he was entirely understandable, and the post was overall a very good contribution.

The real problem is people posting nonsense just to post, with no real contribution to make or ideas to express. That's bad enough as-is, and poor English makes it even worse.

I completely agree to this. We should not give all value to English and grammar used by a member. If someone is weak in this aspect but is still trying to compensate with some extra effort in researching for the content , we should appreciate it. No doubt, having excellent writing skills will always give an advantage to a member on a forum like this where most of the members are educated and using a latest technology like bitcoin.

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March 13, 2018, 02:14:50 PM
 #31

I was addressed as "sir" more times whilst I was in America, than I am in England.

As I pointed out in another thread. "sir" doesn't derive from English imperialism, but comes from the diminution of the word "sire" which was the form of address for a Baronet or Knight.

A lot of English words come from the days of the Normans. For example, most of the words referring to edible meat come from the French ( beef from boeuf ), because the Normans were the only ones who could afford to eat it. The words for animal husbandry such as "cow" come from the Anglo-Saxon language ( which is Germanic in origin).

Personally, I don't have a problem with people using "sir" on the forum. I think it is redundant, but it doesn't slow down or mess up a post in my opinion.

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March 13, 2018, 05:24:19 PM
 #32


If this somehow happened overnight, it'd be the greatest-ever step forward for humanity. So I am very happy to see people from poorer countries on this forum and in the Bitcoin ecosystem generally, acting with ambition. IMO Bitcoin was created in part to help break down the artificial barriers which are keeping these people from prosperity. Though no amount of this sort of thinking excuses those who choose to post garbage posts, for whatever reason.

I'm happy to see that you think this way. Often these topics that start a discussion about how to improve the quality of posts in the forum, receive a large number of people whose only aim is to strengthen their biased and racist position on others.

The latest modifications, merit system and the creation of exclusive sections for serious discussions where signatures are not allowed, can contribute a lot to increase the quality of the discussions.

But it is important to note that the niche sections where technical discussions take place are not populated with messages from people seeking posts for signature campaigns.

And excessive use of these more formal treatment occurs when an argument between a person who is in a power position, a campaign manager or a forum staff member, and another person who seeks for help or a service.
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March 13, 2018, 05:53:29 PM
 #33

I think the use of things like "sir" is the result of poor translation tools, and the writer using a specific word in their local language that does not translate well without proper context, which translation tools usually cannot do.
~
~ It would probably be a good idea to add some kind of beginners section in Indonesia.

That is why there is a lot scope for the locals to take the lead here and establish a truly healthy community. Its hard to believe there's no beginner's section at one of the largest community boards. I'd say again for the local members:

Quote
~

But this should be done as an initiative by the speakers themselves. Doing it as a translation service would probably defeat the purpose.
Errmm... anyway, Indonesia Board have many post because Tons of Newbie come everyday and ruin everything. Keep posting without discussion, copy-paste from others. SPAMMER!
Maybe reason why no Beginner Board because many of them Lazy to Read, They dont have much time to read tutorial or rules, just go directly Find Bounty. Moderator and some Member work hard to make Indonesia Board have good name in Global.

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March 15, 2018, 02:30:58 AM
 #34

Errmm... anyway, Indonesia Board have many post because Tons of Newbie come everyday and ruin everything. Keep posting without discussion, copy-paste from others. SPAMMER!
Maybe reason why no Beginner Board because many of them Lazy to Read, They dont have much time to read tutorial or rules, just go directly Find Bounty. Moderator and some Member work hard to make Indonesia Board have good name in Global.

This is true. On top of that, some of those "newbies" were just alt created to create a new thread for their alts account to post for their sign camp.
Mods have done a good thing for that, many useless threads were locked or trashed. A lot of them. Some members were also trying as best as they could to report spam.

-snip-
That is why there is a lot scope for the locals to take the lead here and establish a truly healthy community. Its hard to believe there's no beginner's section at one of the largest community boards. I'd say again for the local members:

Quote
Alternatively, in your local forum, you could:

---> Translate some of the better posts from here (after taking due permission from the original poster)
---> Engage in discussion about setting up the infrastructure for bitcoin within your community. Like local groups, meetups etc.
---> Persuade people to actually care about the goal of financial access and equality for all and the importance of adoption.
---> Inform yourself about the scaling debate and be warned about the false marketing from other people making wild claims.
---> Inform yourself about Lightning Network, SegWit and encourage its usage.

But this should be done as an initiative by the speakers themselves. Doing it as a translation service would probably defeat the purpose.

So far, this is what has been done by some Indonesian member in the local board.

Quote
---> Translate some of the better posts from here (after taking due permission from the original poster)

About the beginner section, it has been mentioned recently by cissrawk and we will discuss it sooner or later.
Right now we've already discussed some point that hopefully makes those spammers, alt farmer, cheater stop.


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March 15, 2018, 05:35:32 AM
 #35

A good recent example which comes to mind is zentdex's Where the merit pours. He made several English errors, but he was entirely understandable, and the post was overall a very good contribution.
I can contribute with better analysis than zentdex, bit I can not have data. Your raw dataset is not enough, and I don't have skills to get more detailed data from the forum base on your rw'aw data. If you can publish more detailed data, I can help make my analysis. I have asked zentdex but he didn't share data which he used for his topic.
Thanks, Theymos.



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jackg
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March 15, 2018, 03:27:15 PM
Last edit: March 15, 2018, 03:37:30 PM by jackg
 #36

A good recent example which comes to mind is zentdex's Where the merit pours. He made several English errors, but he was entirely understandable, and the post was overall a very good contribution.
I can contribute with better analysis than zentdex, bit I can not have data. Your raw dataset is not enough, and I don't have skills to get more detailed data from the forum base on your rw'aw data. If you can publish more detailed data, I can help make my analysis. I have asked zentdex but he didn't share data which he used for his topic.
Thanks, Theymos.

Afaik, the data gets pulled from every users' profile page for that analysis.

DarkStar_ did something similar with his and grabbed data on people (and released the spreadsheet script he used for the main entry (just needs to be edited for the corresponding information)) - don't forget to merit his efforts if it helps you, not many would be able to do something that advanced on a spreadsheet.

Quoted below:
I scraped the earned merit data of 315 people participating in bitcoin paying signature campaigns, just for fun and to have a comparison versus my earlier dataset of 503 altcoin paying signature campaign participants. The raw data is available in the format Username | Earned Merit | Profile URL. The data is separated by campaign name, so you could compare between campaigns if you wish.



Data set

Data was obtained from 15 campaigns. I aimed to scrape all of them, but was not able to due to formatting, or copying restrictions. Some campaigns blocked copying, so I respected their wishes and didn't take their data. Those campaigns were:

 - Crypto-Games.net (oddly, all other Lutpin run campaigns were scrape-able)
 - NitrogenSports
 - Coinpayments

Other campaigns did not have a public dataset:

 - YoBit.net
 - Coinroll

Finally, some campaigns had weird formatting, making it too time consuming for me to grab the profile data. Those campaigns were:

 - BitDice
 - OneHash
 - FortuneJack


There are potential errors in the data, especially for campaigns where "Profile links may be incorrect" is noted on the spreadsheet. Campaigns without that string had their profile links taken directly from what the manager had, while campaigns with the string did not have links[1]. Those without links had their profile link scraped[2], which could result in errors.



Statistics

 - Average of 16.2 merits each
 - Median of 4 merits
 - Excluding the 75 people with no merits, the average person earned 21.3 merits

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Possible Interpretations

  • People participating in Bitcoin paying campaigns generally have a better post quality than those without a campaign or in altcoin bounties, as managers are usually very picky about what they accept. You could infer that the merit system is working, as people with good posts are getting many merits.



How?

I'm scraping merit data using Google Sheets, with this formula:
Code:
=SUBSTITUTE(SUBSTITUTE(SUBSTITUTE(MID(IMPORTXML(D2,"//*[@id=""bodyarea""]"), FIND("Merit:", IMPORTXML(D2,"//*[@id=""bodyarea""]")) + 6, 4), "P", ""), "o", ""), "s", "")-LOOKUP(MID(IMPORTXML(D2,"//*[@id=""bodyarea""]"), FIND("Position", IMPORTXML(D2,"//*[@id=""bodyarea""]"))+9, 2),{"Co","Fu","He","Jr","Le","Me","Ne","Sr"},{"0","100","500","0","1000","10","0","250"})-0

It grabs their merits, subtracts how much merit they would have been given at the start of the system based on current rank, and returns the result. Does not work if they have ranked up, ranked down, are Hero Members who were given 1000 initally or with Copper Members. You need to subtract/add the correction manually, and it's pretty easy to spot errors. This formula grabs their current merit count:

Code:
=SUBSTITUTE(SUBSTITUTE(SUBSTITUTE(MID(IMPORTXML(D2,"//*[@id=""bodyarea""]"), FIND("Merit:", IMPORTXML(D2,"//*[@id=""bodyarea""]")) + 6, 4), "P", ""), "o", ""), "s", "")

Be warned: You will get rate limited eventually. My original plan was to grab 1000 users worth of data, but it was getting really slow.

The D2 in the formula is a link to the user's profile. Data will automatically update as long as the formula is present.



[1] Legit question, why? Seems kinda annoying to do post counting with that
[2] Scraped using a DuckDuckGo[3] with the below formula. A3 represents the username.
Code:
=IMPORTXML("https://duckduckgo.com/?q=%22View+the+profile+of+"&A3&"%22+site%3Abitcointalk.org", "(//div)[9]")
[3] Google wouldn't let me scrape Google search, so DuckDuckGo it is! Side note: Bing search is absolute trash.[4]
[4] I literally searched for "View the profile of XXXX", in quotations so that it returns exact phrase matches, yet I still got completely unrelated results very often

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March 15, 2018, 04:06:37 PM
 #37

Step 6 (Most Important): Do all of the above with a sense of purpose and interest rather than just money as your sole motivator. For money, get a real job. We are still far from changing the banking and economic system.


Personally, I really like this line but Most important is not the most important! Sense of purpose is not actually right but it could be sense of sincerity.

Sense of sincerity of what we are doing is the most important at all. We can easily perform our purpose to post and comments according to what the campaign required.

Sense of sincerity is from inside to outside without any form of requirements but rather it is all about I put my thinking and heart toward my writings just to say that is how the way I do it.

Sincerity can push everyone to learn English to make sure that whatever they contributes in discussion can be understandable by the readers.

Sincerely yours: @art27
jerry29@
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March 15, 2018, 04:28:06 PM
 #38

Yes this is a great thing merit phobia. Everybody has the fear to get merit points anyhow. Some of them are getting good merit points. But the majority always complains about. It is the wreckage of their dreams of getting rich by signature campaign . Haha they always criticize the merit system. Because they never want to learn things. Just want rapid quick rich way. But they will know their is no shortcut to the success.
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March 15, 2018, 05:07:40 PM
 #39

-snip-

I would not use the spreadsheet script for Mass data scraping - theymos' data dump is much better to use, albit more complicated. My spreadsheet thing was intended as a quick "hack" to scrape data before the dump existed, and for purposes such as campaigns.

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March 15, 2018, 09:29:38 PM
 #40

As a newbie, I don't feel disparaged.  The merit system is a great concept.  I have spent time so far educating myself on BTC and the crypto community.  If I feel I have something of value to offer, then I comment.  This forum, just like everywhere else in the world, expects you to EARN your rank.  I didn't read anywhere in the rules that this was going to be easy!
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