Is there somewhere I can find a supportive atmosphere...

I'm not wanting to come off the wrong way here, but I don't think I'll be going back to mu.wordpress.org/forum I'm not used to such an environment where asking any kind of question at all is looked as bad or a reason for belittlement, I understand the possible unwillingness of some to want to share ideas or the like in open, but in such a case if they don't but would still like to help contacting via email or im is a viable method....seems if you ask a question that seems to basic to someone they either immediately ignore you, or jump all over you for asking such a thing, or take the opportunity to show how much more knowlegable they are or give cryptic answers that don't further the questions resolution.....then there is here, I have gotten more help here but some of the questions or things I'm wanting to do aren't related directly with the plugins that are here so I'm guessing the $50 I paid to be part of the site doesn't include things such as that either, I'm wanting to know something such as, if I want to make a file say monetize.php and link to it from the page home.php that a new blogging account starts on, how do I do that? Do I have to use a plugin to do it, if so what plugin, if I can do it by using the templatepath tag how do I do that? I haven't been able to find the answer yet.....I really wish there was an open warm type of community somewhere that people just get together to help each other regardless of things....by the way if anyone is willing or wanting to IM I have krehldar@yahoo.com for yahoo, krehldar@hotmail.com for msn, and 379421 for ICQ online almost all the time using Trillian, email is support@freebloggersworld.com Thanks....

    Luke

    Honestly, you just have to understand the environment and how it's made up over there.

    You essentially have a few types of posters over there.

    a) Experts who are successfully running MU setups. Not meaning it works, I mean successful sites.

    b) Someone with enough knowledge to be dangerous, that can feed off of subtle clues they can get the experts to mention, who then try (and many times fail) to hack something together. They then humbly seek out input from the experts who may/may not hand them a solution.

    c) The "average poster". Someone good enough to get it running, read the readme, doesn't do too much out of their skill ability, and is there to discuss. Sometimes fishing for answers/solutions, sometimes helping out type "d" below to at least get it running.

    d) The "it's free software, so gimme everything you have for free too" type of people. They're there to take, take, take, and whine when there isn't anything new to take.

    e) Completely useless, clueless, "install it and do it all for me for free" types. They rarely last long, as they just haven't even the least bit of the skills needed to comprehend installation, let alone running it.

    f) Trolls, as usual with most forums.

    g) Passers by, who read and move along without posting.

    Now that we have a generalized type of posters there, you need to understand the expert rationale, and exactly what MU is and does.

    From an experts point of view is a generalized feeling of "I busted my butt to learn all the skills I have" is common. They generally don't mind helping on smaller things, but when it comes to giving up secrets which were worked hard for, don't count on it. It won't happen. The blog business is quite competitive, and other than general tidbits, it's all closed door. They will point people to options from time to time, if they already exist, however you can pretty much bet that any publicly available solution to most problems has been coded privately and in much, much better fashion.

    The above type feelings aren't wrong, really. Although it can very easily frustrate new users. Most of your experts are not only guru's with everything needed to run, maintain, code, and support MU, but they have also been around the project for years. Some of them could take the core and code it just as easily as the actual developers. In some cases, maybe even a little better.

    The experts are end users as well, and not required by any means to share anything they've done once the software is in their hands. Wordpress.com is an end user, but you don't hear any complaining that they don't give up their goodies. Well, on a rare occasion you might from poster type "d" and "e" above.

    One thing that many people fail to realize is that MU is server level software. It's targeted to run thousands upon thousands of blogs. This being the case, and to whom the software is targeted, you're going to run into a lot of times where someone fails to have even the most basic skills to even think about running and supporting the software. The experts and regulars there are typically not in a mood to help out with learning basic HTML, PHP, CSS, etc. Those are very rudimentary skills which should be brought to the table. Learning such can be done elsewhere, while getting into the meat and potatoes of issues with the software.

    Browse the forums over there, and look at how many posts are either:
    a) duplicated because someone can't be bothered to search first.

    b) desperate pleas from group "d" or "e" above, who wouldn't have such problems if they had the proper skill level to be running MU.

    c) due to failure to properly read the readme file.

    d)... the list goes on, and on, and on...

    Sure, it seems harmless to a new users, but after months and years of posts which typically have no merit in a community for a piece of software who's target is a more educated crowd (as compared to all the tards on the main wp.org forums), people just get fed up with it.

    freeblogger

    I'm coming in from the phpld community, I run pc-factor.com have for a while, I had quite the skill in my day, sorry to say I have about 40% of the skills I had, and 40-50% of the ability to learn that I had before, in the phpld(link directory) community it's not quite so cut throat sink or swim or rude, granted it's not a completely free software, nor does it cost hundreds of dollars to get started. I also have a gaming script that I have bought and have set up a sight for, I'm waiting for a long waited for update from the publisher, I could have went ahead and figured out how to do the things that the upgrade is doing myself but since the upgrade was covering it it would have been over kill so I'm waiting, while I'm waiting for that to take place and as a way to increase the link coverage opening up and giving blog space out seemed like a good idea, had no clue that even getting the basics of some things would prove to be so illusive or hexxed to be asked is all I'm saying....I understand what you're saying, the open a blog set it up and make money right away have everyone else do something for you for free field is free and the community for blogs is larger than that for setting up or working on link directories or online arcade sites but geesh....

    Could I get an answer to one question I have been trying to get answered from the beginning, I want to link to referral links that are javascript links....I want to put these links in the middle of an explanation/introduction type text i.e. text links.....do I have to use a plugin to do this and do it through the page or blog unit of the mu program or could I not just make a page and hard code it with links to a file that offers the information such as say the home.php file that is shown when someone makes a new blog, where it currently has links to edublogs.com stuff replace those with files inside the same theme directory that have the javascript links hard coded in it, do I have to use a plugin for this that already exists, do I need to write one as it doesn't exist to do what I am needing or is there something I haven't seen yet that uses something along the lines of the TEMPLATEPATH/ tag that will let me just link to the made page, or do I just need to back off till my brain is working better??

    I'm not asking for someone to come in and code it for me, not asking for free plugins although seems like a slew of them exist, not asking for someone to teach me css or php, I know where to go to learn those things....seems like MU decides on a whim what rules it will follow and what rules it won't, but then again I've not been up to my usual mental level let alone what I once was at so I may just be missing something really stupid and that's been what I have been trying to figure out.....and if it is just me missing something really stupid believe me I will be madder at myself then anyone else could possibly be

    andrea_r

    Yep, making a page template is pretty much your version of hardcoding it in there.

    Also, take frequent breaks.

    I will also note that a lot of the people who answer come in, answer a bunch, then leave until the next day. So I know from the other side, it looks like my end of the conversation dropped off. But for me, I only have limited time to spend there and answer what I can, then move on.

    drmike

    And some of us have gotten tired of repeating "Have you read the readme file?", "Have you followed all of the steps?" and my personal favorite "Did you read the debugging page in the codex, followed the suggestions and listed the answers?"

    And when you get back a "Yes, yes and huh?", you know the answer to one and two is really "nope."

    That and folks expecting you to stop everything and do hours of work for you, usually for free and without even a thank you. I've said it before and I'll say it again. "I get more thanks for handing an 80 year old homeless guy a cup of coffee on Saturday and Sunday mornings than I do with most of the wordpress folks and the developers."

    ZappoMan

    The other thing to consider is that if someone is good at using the platform, they're probably busy... doing what they do... And when you're busy, even if you want to be helpful, it can be too tiring to post the same old reply over and over again. You want to help. It's just too mentally draining.

    And unfortunately as Luke points out, there are many many people who aren't exactly grateful when you do help them. They even get a little upset at you that you didn't do more.

    freeblogger

    That again is something I'm not used to in the phpld community or the php, css, html or other communities I have any dealings with, when I help others I almost always get at least a little thanks in return, sometimes I get much more than expected, rarely I get nothing but it usually equals out to a good experience in both helping and asking...I didn't see your post before I posted my thanks, but I always say thanks whenever I am able to do so I see that as just the decent thing to do And at the same time hope that I will have the opportunity to return the favor to someone somehow as well...

    freeblogger

    I always try to see those types of people the exceptions not the rule zappoman, although I'm not familiar with the MU community so here it may be completely wrong for me to try and carry over that same attitude, but hopefully I can continue to do so, and hopefully soon I will be in a position to return the help to others that I have gotten so far...

    Luke

    The MU community is a pretty tough crowd. At times people come in, ready to change the world, and end up dust in the wind.

    Not necessarily because it has to be a bad experience, but after a few helpful tidbits you end up getting the feeling of being fed upon by the code-suckers. You know, the gimme crowd.

    Plus they eventually learn that one of the keys to breaking out from "the crowd" is to be different, and try to offer a unique perspective. Let's face it, blog hosts these days are a dime a dozen. Something has to be able to set you apart from all the money-eyed, don't wanna work for it, gimme what you got so I can be just like you, copy of everyone else hosts out there.

    Even when something is discontinued, the code-suckers come begging for more, more, more. Gimme, gimme, gimme.

    Zap's pretty much on target. Eventually it gets old, and quick at that.

    andrea_r

    Yep, we get cranky fast.

    I'm sure there's a thread on the first page with a question where the OP feels it's just really simple and easy but would, in fact, take a good hour to type out an answer, plus any coding.

    I *really* don't mind helping people with things that are simple & easy for me, but I just cannot spend all day at it. and for free.

    Like Zappo said, we're busy doing what we do. And freeblogger, at least you're trying to understand. That's a *good* thing.

    freeblogger

    Thanks........I've finally grasp the concept how to put script into a page.....thanks to luke pointing me in that direction. I have to admit I haven't been up to speed mentally lately so been having to fight harder than I usually do, perhaps that has something to do with, may have to do with my view of the community as well not sure....

    The concept is really not to different than how we do it when making templates for phpld so I don't know why I couldn't see it sooner as I have a good bit of experience at it, I guess I was over analyzing.