On taking things to a Direct Message

Whether it’s here on the Forum or in the wider Infinite Flight Community, there has been quite an increase in replies along the lines of "DM me if you have any questions" below I’ll summarize why I have the opinion that this isn´t always a good idea:


Am I the right person to be answering ?

In many situations, there are a lot of people willing to help out by answering questions here in the Infinite Flight Community, but are you really the right person to be giving private answers? Do you have in-depth knowledge about the field in question to pass on to the person questioning?


Public Discourse:

Especially for Infinite Flight and Forum related questions there is usually no need to take things to a Direct Message since the public Topics are there to be used.

By taking further questions to a DM you are running the risk of:

  • A mistake on your end going unnoticed and therefore spreading false information (mistakes happen to everyone)

  • Often you´re not just educating one person by replying to a topic. Other Users/Members read the topic and can be saved from asking the same or a similar question. So you´re helping spread knowledge to the wider community.

  • On Controversial topics, different Opinions have to be taken into consideration, in a DM only one can be relayed, however, in a public topic other person can way in with their information and/or opinion.


When is it a good idea to take things to a Direct Message?

  • If you are 100% qualified to give an in depth and correct answer in a field you specialize in (IFATC, IFAET, IFVARB, Regulars, etc)

  • When a Question/Discussion is going off topic and you have the time to continue it in more detail privately.

  • If you are available in the near future. There isn’t much to be gained by telling someone to reach out to you shortly before you log off for the night.


Of course the incentive to help another User is always great and should be given where possible and applicable. As stated above this is only my personal view on the subject.
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I do a topic for how to get notifications p, and this is the app you need, nice message

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Great reminder! I think it’s important before telling the user who needs assistance to pm you with any further questions if you can actually answer those questions and take accountability for not knowing a question they may ask within your PM. If I can, I tell people to send me a pm with any further questions they may have if I feel I can provide more information on the subject they are inquiring about but will direct them to the right folks if I do not know a specific answer. Its important to ask if you are even confident you can give them more info if they need it within your PM. It’s not all about being right and providing an answer even if it isn’t accurate just so you can look like you know it all, it’s about the information you give and that reflects that you, as a user can take accountability for not knowing an answer to something. Being a good user in my opinion means that you can admit you don’t know the answers to some things because you are being honest. I hope you all understand where I’m trying to get at.

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I totally agree with the OP, it’s really annoying seeing technical questions taken off to a private space. If I’m reading the thread then I have an interest in the subject, and I should have the right to reply if I think I can contribute, and I should have the right to benefit from others knowledge and experience.

Even if someone is “qualified” that doesn’t mean their contribution will be total or final. Often questions asked by less experienced participants can open up new angles on a topic that the expert may not have considered.

As I see it, information on the forum is not for the benefit on any one person, but for the whole community.

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