# For those in positions of power on MHB

#### alane1994

##### Active member
What do you guys do if there is a particular user that seems, for all intents and purposes, incapable of proper grammar? On another forum where I have significant power, there is a user that is driving our users absolutely nutty with his lack of grammar. What would you guys do?

#### jakncoke

##### Active member
is he capable of using proper grammar? It would be difficult to chastise him if English is not his first language. Also can you give an example of how he is driving the users nuts? I mean you have the option when it comes to reading a post by a certain user right?

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#### alane1994

##### Active member
There are moments where it seems like he could, potentially. But the vast majority of the time, I have had to go in and edit posts so that they are readable.

#### jakncoke

##### Active member
is it possible for you to give me the site and username of this person so i can read some posts?

#### alane1994

##### Active member
Nah, I edited them. The reason why is because people were commenting on how difficult it was for them to follow his thoughts.

#### Ackbach

##### Indicium Physicus
Staff member
We haven't had too much of a problem with this on MHB, as we're still fairly young. The forum rules (#12 in particular) stipulate up front that users post in English, and that automatically implies good enough grammar to understand. If there is confusion, helpers here at MHB are usually fairly quick to ask clarifying questions, and if the helpee is also following the rules (I have in mind here the showing of effort, as per Rule #11), the problem usually goes away pretty quickly.

So you might say that here at MHB, our philosophy tends to be more preemptive and prophylactic than reactionary. I recall this same philosophy working fairly well on other forums.

#### alane1994

##### Active member
OK, well, I will make the the suggestion of having some basic rules regarding communication similar to those found here at MHB. Thanks for the response.

#### MarkFL

Staff member
As many of you know, I am a global moderator at MMF, and I frequently edit topic titles there to make them more descriptive, and to correct spelling/grammar mistakes. Here at MHB, the rules are better defined and I don't see this nearly as much. Both sites request that posts be made in English.

If a particular user's titles/posts need editing to make them readable, I will ask them to take more care to properly present their question, and point out that it is to their benefit to do so. In my experience, haste is more of a problem than English not being the primary language.

Younger people are more likely to use text-messaging abbreviations, which I try to discourage, pointing out that a math help forum is a more formal setting.

After a user has a few hundred posts under their belt, I also try to encourage the use of $\LaTeX$ to promote better readability. I do feel that a certain grace period is called for in this matter. I will however, point out right from the beginning, that use of bracketing symbols is a must to avoid ambiguities in interpreting a problem.

Overall, I would say that the spelling and grammar on math help sites is quite good compared to other areas of interest in which I have been involved.

#### dwsmith

##### Well-known member
What do you guys do if there is a particular user that seems, for all intents and purposes, incapable of proper grammar? On another forum where I have significant power, there is a user that is driving our users absolutely nutty with his lack of grammar. What would you guys do?
Have you determined his ip address? That should tell you the region he is from before we assume he can be potential good at English grammar.

#### dwsmith

##### Well-known member
After a user has a few hundred posts under their belt, I also try to encourage the use of $\LaTeX$ to promote better readability.
I no longer read questions that aren't in Tex. I just hate trying to decipher what is going especially if there are equations everywhere.

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