Why Do People Answer Questions on Q&A Sites? Ask.com Users Speak Up

11/16/11Follow @wroush

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killermonkey: because the reason for me is im bored and i like to share my thoughts and might learn somthing or idk

btaylor2010: Because we have no life

samanthajune: Those of us with the pink star under our profile picture answer questions to help the Susan G. Koman for the cure. Ask donates 25 cents to breast cancer research for each question we answer.

dinogurliee: Cause we like helping people:)

fakebirds: To be helpful. Or just to have fun and mess with people. Why are you on Ask.com?

ashu90: because we can help…

NYsunshine: Because we want to<3<3

nadarkins: I don’t really know why but it’s kind of addicting. I guess it’s a fun thing to do if you have a little bit of down time

samanthakellie: Well I like to get people to follow me, thumbs ups, & I just like helping people.

TammyLaVonne: Man’s natural God Given, curiousness…

BrewersFan4Ever: I like to help people out, unless they are trying to get an answer for their homework. By my answers, i donate 25 cents each answer to the Susan G Komen Cure (helping find the cure of breast cancer)

FormerGlory: It’s therapeutic to help people, make friends, and make people laugh.

Dozy: Lots of reasons, Wade — and just possibly as many different reasons as there are different members. Yes, it’s good to be able to help, and sometimes you get the chance actually to do that. Sometimes I help most by keeping my mouth shut and my fingers off the keyboard. Ask will also pay 25c per answer to the Komen Foundation for cancer research. So you can help there. I enjoy writing, so many of my answers push that 1200 character limit. I’m not sure how many people actually read the stuff, but I have fun writing it. Then, I like to be creative so I often pull a question out of context and answer it from a different point of view — like today’s question about the Richter scale. But mostly it’s for the brilliance of the comments threads. A lot of us are pretty average but some of the people on this site are brilliant, and I enjoy their input. There’s a great deal of interaction and a lot of humour in the comments threads and I’ve had the pleasure of exchanging ideas with some of our people on Facebook. I see you’re not following anybody yet. Pick out a few people whose answers you like and add them to your list. It’s the quickest way into the site’s entertainment.

VirginiaL: Hi WadeRoush, Welcome to Ask! I came late last December, and was intrigued by this amazing, interactive software that is so immediately responsive…you can post your question, and within minutes or hours responses come in from all over the world. It is a wonderful sense of very high-quality social connection with people everywhere, and you never need to leave home. The questions, answers, and discussions really help you develop your power of reason and insight. Also, there have been times when this website has very possibly saved a life…someone comes on in deep despair, asking for suggestions, opinions or resources…and a dozen people respond in support… There have been (and still are) problems, mostly as the software continues to be refined, but those of us who hang in there have definitely felt it is worth it. So hope you stay a long time…

HaeinKim: To help. What If people didn’t answer your questions?

Jebidiahcrackercorn: For me, it addicting! If I don’t stop, I’ll have to start an AA group! Get it? : D

barbarabliss: Many times I have a real question that I need an answer or opinion on. I actually have participated on Ask. com for years + (as long as they’ve been online I think, even though my profile shows only Oct. 2011.) I love the fun and camaraderie I’ve experienced with the good-humored give and take with like minds. Truthfully, I don’t even mind opposite views, that’s part of the give and take. But, I do mind disrespect. Possibly I’m from the wrong generation, having come over here on the Mayflower. :-) The recent question I asked the moderators about what I thought should not have appeared on Ask.com caused quite a ruckus. I am sorry about that. I quite innocently found those questions on the rt. side of the screen while checking on questions I thought I could answer. I wish the moderators would have just removed it. I don’t understand what their purpose was to keep it going; but I’m heading into seven decades, still got a lot to learn.

Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @wroush

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