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#459424 - Fri Mar 13 2009 05:00 PM Re: about interesting information
darksplash Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Sat Nov 03 2007
Posts: 505
Loc: Tyrone
NorthernIrelandUK
I know it would be quicker to write quizzes if it was not for II.
I usually reckon on 40 per cent of my time writing the questions and answers and 60 per cent researching and writing the II.

I find myself agreeing with both TB and d89: more than a couple of pars can be too much. Yet, I too have had nice things said about my II.

On the subject of "full stops" and "periods", when I used to have to dictate newspaper and radio reports by telephone to copy takers, I was trained to say "full point" at the end of each sentence and par. (full point)
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#459425 - Fri Mar 13 2009 05:05 PM Re: about interesting information
ozzz2002 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Mon Dec 03 2001
Posts: 19847
Loc: Sydney NSWAustralia
I am probably guilty of writing 'essays' as II, but I am not going to change- that is just my style, and has been ever since I started authoring way back in 2001. This was before II became compulsory.

If people want to read it, that is their choice. I am not upset if players opt to skim over it.

(And I hope it was not ME who sent that correction!)
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#459426 - Fri Mar 13 2009 07:40 PM Re: about interesting information
bloomsby Offline
Moderator

Registered: Sun Apr 29 2001
Posts: 4071
Loc: Norwich EnglandUK
Quote:

I really don't understand why so much interesting information is required. We aren't writing an essay on the topic, we're merely providing a nice little question and answer quiz on it. If I want more information on something, I'll look on Wikipedia or another source. I don't think it should be the quizwriter's obligation to provide interesting info.




Playing a quiz should be a satisfying experience, not merely "a nice little question and answer quiz" (with the option of going to Wikipedia).

In particular, an answer that leaves the player bewildered is a poor do. An example that sticks in my mind is a question in an early quiz that asked for the nickname of Malcolm IV of Scotland - and the correct answer was "The Maiden". Not a word of comment or explanation! I doubt if I'm the only one who finds this kind of thing inconsiderate. Good quizzes take the player into account.

Nobody expects an essay in I.I. What is required is enough information to enable ordinary players to make sense of the answer. (Purely personally, I'm not keen on really lengthy I.I.).

Obviously, there are different kinds of quizzes, and some are conceived as "learning experiences". For these, there is sometimes a case for somewhat fuller I.I. on some of the questions.

FT Quiz Editor, History and People

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#459427 - Fri Mar 13 2009 11:02 PM Re: about interesting information
stuthehistoryguy Offline
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Registered: Fri Aug 20 2004
Posts: 1302
Loc: Omaha NebraskaUSA
My top rated quiz (#3 sitewide) is just the lyrics to a great song with some blanks inserted. The reason it's my top-rated quiz is because of the rather voluminous interesting information. Good II gets good rationgs, period.

Darn, there it is again!
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#459428 - Sat Mar 14 2009 05:32 AM Re: about interesting information
Rowena8482 Offline
Prolific

Registered: Mon Mar 12 2007
Posts: 1408
Loc: Hartlepool DurhamEnglandUK
I get "peeved" by II that doesn't actually let you know which was the right answer. If I get a question wrong in an hourly or daily game, sometimes it's impossible to know which answer should have been the right one from the II. This means I can't try and remember it if the Q comes out again. I've noticed this in the point tree mostly, probably because with that game I'm answering questions I have absolutely no clue at ALL what the answer should be lol. It would be nice to be able to tell afterwards.
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#459429 - Sat Mar 14 2009 07:04 AM Re: about interesting information
Leau Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Sun Jun 16 2002
Posts: 5337
Loc: Nijmegen/Brisbane
A lot of quiz authors try to get around the interesting information requirement by simply repeating the correct answer. That's not interesting at all, so I don't allow it. In most quizzes the correct answer IS stated afterwards, so it really is redundant to repeat the correct answer in the info. I too noticed though that the Point Tree is an unlucky exception to this.

Leau, editor
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#459430 - Sat Mar 14 2009 07:55 AM Re: about interesting information
shuehorn Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Tue Jul 04 2006
Posts: 3613
Loc: Lawrenceville Georgia�USA�...
Plus, I know it isn't intentional, but I think it is funny when this happens in the Point Tree. The thing is, you get some points for passing on questions you don't know, but you don't necessarily get the chance to learn the answer to passed questions. You get the 10 points, but then you sometimes need to research the answer so you can answer correctly and get the full points if it comes up again.
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#459431 - Sat Mar 14 2009 11:34 AM Re: about interesting information
Midget40 Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Mon Oct 27 2008
Posts: 5100
Loc: Perth WesternAustralia
I'm not a big reader of interesting info either unless I want to know why a question is right or wrong (and it really frustrates me when it doesn't explain that).

But I have also received many compliments on Interesting info which means there are people that like to read it and learn more.

I also think that having to provide it keeps the quiz standards higher.

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#459432 - Sun Mar 15 2009 04:59 PM Re: about interesting information
darksplash Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Sat Nov 03 2007
Posts: 505
Loc: Tyrone
NorthernIrelandUK
Out of curiosity, is the II truncated, and even sometimes chopped altogether, in quizzes such as the 'Mixed Hourly Trivia!'?
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#459433 - Sun Mar 15 2009 05:22 PM Re: about interesting information
jordandog Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Tue Apr 17 2007
Posts: 5097
Loc: OhioUSA
I just took a new quiz today by a resident favorite author of mine, stuthehistoryguy, and the II was outstanding. The quiz was "Mysterious Monsters" in the 'For Children' cat. Even though the II contained quite a bit, I think any child of the age it's geared to would learn a lot and be fascinated by it, that's how well done it was. Good job, Stu, as always.
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#459434 - Sun Mar 15 2009 09:00 PM Re: about interesting information
stuthehistoryguy Offline
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Registered: Fri Aug 20 2004
Posts: 1302
Loc: Omaha NebraskaUSA
Thanks, mate. That story of the real mummy coming to life in the Field Museum was something I've been trying to track down for years.
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#459435 - Mon Mar 16 2009 01:36 AM Re: about interesting information
Schoonie101 Offline
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Registered: Sun Jun 24 2007
Posts: 1178
Loc: California USA
Quote:

I really don't understand why so much interesting information is required. We aren't writing an essay on the topic, we're merely providing a nice little question and answer quiz on it. If I want more information on something, I'll look on Wikipedia or another source. I don't think it should be the quizwriter's obligation to provide interesting info. I think that outside of a cool factoid or two is excessive and erodes the fun and quick aspect that is quiz-taking and trivia. When you're doing a pub quiz the moderator doesn't stop after each question and spout off random, forced information about the topic. I think a lot more quizzes could be put online if the interesting info wasn't required and so stringent. Just my fifty cents :-)




I have to side with Triviaballer here. 2 to 3 sentences of interesting information (II) are just about the amount I want to read (with occasional [0.05%] exceptions and there ARE exceptions) when playing a quiz. Anything more than that is just excessive and I end up not even skimming, let alone reading, any of it.

Don't get me wrong - I really do appreciate the II that are provided with quizzes but, just like with the 1-2 paragraph questions that get crammed into 6 pt font on the flash format, too much II is overbearing and almost pointless. This is especially true when the II just recounts the plot of a book or movie, for example, and spreads out 25 paragraphs of the plot synopsis over the 10 questions.


Edited by Schoonie101 (Mon Mar 16 2009 01:38 AM)
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#459436 - Mon Mar 16 2009 11:05 AM Re: about interesting information
guitargoddess Offline
Moderator

Registered: Mon Jul 09 2007
Posts: 39136
Loc: Ottawa OntarioCanada
I think it's better to have it there and have some people not read it than to leave the people who do want to know more confused about something. If you don't want to read it, then don't.
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#459437 - Mon Mar 16 2009 11:31 AM Re: about interesting information
agony Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 14771
Loc: Western Canada
One reason to read the II is because that's often where the, um, interesting information is.

The world is full of quirky little stories, interesting tidbits, odd little colourful nuggets. Unfortunately, due to the pesky nature of reality, many of these are less than reliably documented. If it's not a verifiable fact, it can't be used as a quiz question. The interesting info leaves a bit more wiggle room - you can say something like "According to the story...." and let your audience in on some fascinating little something.


For example, say you are reading a biography of Joe Rockstar, written by his older sister. She tells a great funny story of him getting his first guitar for Christmas, and coming out of his room three days later playing "All Along the Watchtower". What a great question for a quiz - "What was the first song Joe Rockstar learned to play?" You've got a good reliable source, it should be gold, right? Well, maybe. Or maybe Joe played the recorder in his school band for three years before that Christmas, and so obviously had learned several other songs, just not on guitar. And that on Christmas night, he picked out the melody of "Silent Night" on it, just to please his mom. And that his other sister says in some interview that the summer before, while sister one was away at camp, Joe had learned to play "Satisfaction" on a guitar belonging to the kid next door. So your question, in order to be accurate, starts to read like it was written by a lawyer - "Which rock song was the first one that Joe Rockstar learned to play on the guitar that he got for Christmas when he was eleven, according to "I'm Joe's Sister" by Cindy Rockstar, published in 2007?" And then someone writes to tell you that his birthday is on Dec 29th, so he was actually just ten when he got that guitar....

And that's why the actual question is about which label Joe signed with in 1999, and the cute first song story goes into the interesting info. Quiz questions are, by necessity, almost always drier than what can be allowed in the info section.

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#459438 - Mon Mar 16 2009 12:25 PM Re: about interesting information
funnybuni Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Tue Oct 14 2008
Posts: 301
Loc: Florida USA
Here's my two cents;

If the quiz is on a movie or famous person, it is always interesting to know the, well, interesting info. You can learn why they chose a certain cast member for the job, why they didn't choose this other actor, what went on behind the scenes, what the actor said in this interview, etc. You learn things that totally turn the movie into 3D and the actor into a "real" person.

For music, the II can be interesting to learn why the author wrote the song. What inspired it? Who was he writing the song on? What does the song mean?

For books, it could be about what inspired the author to write the story. How long did it take? Did the author have to work a fulltime job, and then type all night, every night? Did the author have to type it on a library typewriter?

Anyhow, this is way more that two cents - more like two bucks - but you get my point. There can be SO much information in the II, and I'd rather read lengthy paragraphs like mentioned above than just reading "Taylor Swift co-wrote this song with Liz Rose".

Or maybe I'm just defending myself for my long-winded II's.


Edited by funnybuni (Mon Mar 16 2009 12:27 PM)
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#459439 - Mon Mar 16 2009 01:23 PM Re: about interesting information
bucknallbabe Offline
Forum Adept

Registered: Thu Oct 30 2008
Posts: 136
Loc: Bedfordshire EnglandUK
I tend not to read the interesting information when a question appears in a game - I just look at those I got wrong to see if there's anything which will help me to get the correct answer next time. However, if I choose to do a quiz, it's because I'm interested in the subject matter and I do read the info and maybe follow some of it up. Also, the quality of the interesting information, including its relevance and the amount of it, does influence how I rate a quiz. A lengthy piece can be absolutely fascinating - but it could also be just rambling and not well-thought out. Part of the fun of writing a quiz is researching the topic and sometimes I find a better question as a result of that research so I'm in favour of interesting info for lots of reasons.

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#459440 - Tue Mar 17 2009 02:44 AM Re: about interesting information
JaneMarple Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Jan 30 2004
Posts: 14480
Loc: North West of England
Sometimes with my quizzes - mainly on the detective fiction ones - I do seem to give a lot of II, expecailly with my earlier ones. I do try and trim them to three or four sentences these days. Sometimes it is hard to read a lot of II
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#459441 - Tue Mar 17 2009 04:57 AM Re: about interesting information
Snowman Offline
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Registered: Wed Oct 31 2007
Posts: 1613
Loc: London EnglandUK
I'm one for writing lengthy II, usually because, as agony says, I've been forced by facts to write a relatively straightforward question merely to lead into the really interesting stuff.

Sometimes, something really interesting would be rendered dull by making it into a question that isn't impossible to answer, so the interesting part becomes the postscript to the question.

Like Jane, I am trying to write shorter II nowadays - if you think my IIs are long on my quizzes, then you should see my first drafts!

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#459442 - Sat Mar 21 2009 04:53 PM Re: about interesting information
Markboynz Offline
Explorer

Registered: Thu Mar 19 2009
Posts: 84
Loc: Auckland NZ
I find I read the II much more regularly for questions I get wrong than for questions I get right.

But I think some of this debate may come down to the different ways that people play quizzes. Some people seem to focus mainly on areas in which they are already experienced/well-read etc, and as such, the II will be of less interest, as they will most likely already know it. However, if you play a quiz that is outside of your comfort zone, just because it sounds interesting, or because you'd like to learn a little about the subject, then the II can be a godsend, and completely fascinating (as long as it is well written, of course).

I also have to concur that when you get above 2 paragraphs (or what really should have been 2 paragraphs, even if syntactically it isn't), I have a tendency to gloss over it.
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