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Tips on Submitting Questions

Discussion in 'Trivia' started by Python, Dec 4, 2015.

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  1. Python

    Python Justice is myself. I am justice. Forum Moderator Channel Leader Forum Moderator Channel Leader

    Jan 5, 2014
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    Ever wondered how to best and most efficiently submit questions for review? We here at Trivia know it can seem daunting, especially when you don’t have the luxury of being able to peruse the database of accepted questions at will. That said, there are a few surefire ways of improving your submission that universally give it a better chance of being accepted.

    -Double-check to ensure that your trivia is correct and can be verified

    Checking your fact on Wikipedia before submitting your question is the quickest and easiest way of doing this. If the fact can be found at other sources of knowledge that are even more reputable, even better!

    -Word the question so that an average person can understand what it’s asking

    Try to refrain from using too much technical jargon that is specific to any one field, as well as advanced vocabulary that an average person wouldn’t have the slightest chance of understanding.

    -Please use proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation to the best of your ability

    This one should be pretty self-explanatory. The Trivia Admins will definitely proofread for any errors, but try to do your part too! This only refers to the bare minimum, so if there’s a grammar rule you’re unsure of (we’ve all been there) or writing isn’t your strong suit, don’t worry. The main idea is for your question to be accessible and interesting, after all.

    -Don’t make your questions too esoteric, general questions are generally better

    This is one of those areas of Trivia that can be more open to one’s personal judgment over any single hard and fast rule. When you’re deciding what to submit a question on, the primary idea is to create a question that people have a fair chance of answering, rather than a question on some relatively obscure material. Some handy metrics that tend to work universally are gauges of popularity. (if it’s a song, did it make the top of the charts? Or even make the charts at all? Awards, too! Did a movie receive the Oscar for Best Picture in its year? Same goes for people too. How well known are their accomplishments, especially outside of their own country? For an anime series, how big was it outside of Japan? You could go on, obviously.) Perhaps the single best method to make a good question about a subject is to make a “general” question about that subject. Asking a question where the answer to that question is the show itself, instead of asking a question where the answer is the title of an episode of that show. Or asking about a main character instead of asking about a marginal side character. If you want to see any representation for something in Trivia, you have to start here. And as you move up in relevance and notoriety, only the most well-known subjects or works in history may have questions about their “details”.

    An addendum on “accessible” questions: Watching quiz-related TV shows can give you a better idea on what might be a good question. This is especially true the closer you get to having “average joe” contestants and not, say, the Jeopardy Tournament of Champions.

    -Keep in mind that Pokemon Online has a global userbase

    To touch a bit more on something in that last section, I mentioned that people, like historical figures and such, should generally be known outside of the countries that they are primarily associated with. To expand on this concept, keep in mind that you should try to avoid any subject that focuses too much on the culture of a single country, to the point where outsiders would have a “slim to none” chance of knowing or hearing about it.

    -When submitting a question about a work (art, literature, film, anime, etc.), include the title of the work in the question

    Doing this will prevent a lot of confusion regarding just what piece of fiction or nonfiction you’re referring to. Typically, you’ll want to put the title of the work right at the start of the question. (e.g. “In [insert title of work here], what is…) Obviously, all of this doesn’t apply if the answer to your question is the title of the work itself. In those cases, your question should be as general as possible, usually an abridged version of the work’s central premise.

    -Don’t make your question too long

    If the question is too long, it won’t help people to answer in the 12 seconds they’re given. You’ll have to use your judgment to determine what’s too long or what’s just right. If us TAs determine that a question is a bit long, we’ll try to trim it while keeping in the most important bits.

    -Don’t submit a question with too many possible answers

    Again, you’ll have to use your own judgment on stuff like this. It might also vary by category, a question with 5 different countries as answers should be better received than a question with 5 different books, for instance. Keep in mind that this applies to distinct answers first and foremost, and not their variations. (U.S.A. would be a variation of United States of America, as an example)

    -When you come across an interesting piece of Trivia, submit it

    Whether you see it on television, hear it in a conversation, read about it in a book, wherever. For you Trivia Admins out there, it would be a good habit to do the same thing, since you can search the database at will.
    fitzy, Joyverse, Edna and 4 others like this.
Moderators: Ascarotte, E.T., Python
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