Thank you for joining the team at GoutPal Interactive. I look forward to answering your questions, and reading your experiences and opinions about gout. You should know that, just by asking questions, you are helping other gout sufferers. Many others are in the same position as you, but lack the skill or motivation to join the forum. The anonymous gout sufferers are an important bunch of people. They will see the answers to your questions, and many will get a great deal of help from that.
So that you get the best from the forum, I’d like to offer some advice. Please feel free to say exactly what you like, but be respectful. If you have a different opinion, do not name-call or resort to any form of personal abuse. Simply state what your opinions are, and allow other people to hold different opinions. The only other rule is no self-promotional links without prior approval, and no linking to low quality websites under any circumstances. Very easy rules that are easier to follow than to break – I want you to join in as much as possible, not be hog-tied by rules and regulations.
Tips for responding to topics
Responding to most topics is usually a simple case of just say what you want. When topics get busy, it can be unclear exactly what you are responding to. If you are addressing a specific person, then here are some tips to help make it clear who you are responding to:
- Copy and paste selected text (avoid copying complete posts if possible)
- Refer to the name of the member (displayed under the members profile icon in the left column)
- Specifically link using @username. Please note that the user name might be different from the name displayed. You can get it by clicking on the [erson’s name, then looking at the top of their profile page. That @tag will automatically link to the person concerned, eg to address me, you could write @keithtaylor or @goutpal
On the other hand, if you are making a general point, intended for all readers, not one specific member, then choose words that make this clear. For example, start your sentence with something like “All gout sufferers in similar situations will benefit from …”
Tips for starting new topics
When you start a new topic, you have a small box for a title, and a large box to describe your question in detail.
Tips for topic title
- Be brief – focus on key words
- Be relevant – avoid phrases like “please help,” “long story,” and similar nonsense
- Be unique – type your intended title into the search box first. If someone already asked, join that discussion, or make your question different
- Be yourself – ignore those tips if you do not like them. As far as I’m concerned, you know best what you want to say, so just say it
Tips for topic description
- Who are you? New members get better answers when they give some personal history. This can be part of the topic description, or put it in your profile, then all you need write is something like “see my profile for my gout history”
- Why do you ask? Explain what you hope to achieve. That helps people give you relevant answers.
- What have you tried? Please say what you have already tried when you first ask. It is very annoying to other members if they suggest some help for you, and you respond by saying you’ve already tried it.
- Be specific – always give your exact uric acid level, correct name for the medicines you take, exact daily dose of those medicines. If you can’t be bothered getting basic facts right, how can you expect people to take the time to help you?
Please thank people who respond to your questions. It is especially good if you follow up by sharing how the advice has helped you.
Finally, if you have not done so, please subscribe to forum updates. This makes sure that you see all responses to your topics, and you will often see other discussions that are relevant to you. There is a form at the foot of every page, but as this is very important, I’ll repeat it here: