Self Demonstrating / Thread Mode
- When a wiki page meant to be informative becomes dominated by edits responding to each other instead of improving the page, the page is said to have 'degenerated into thread mode'. This state is considered destructive to the wiki, as it changes the focus from facts to the conflict of opinions.
- Do you really think so?
- Don't forget it's usually caused by the editors having conflicting viewpoints.
- Well, true, but generally speaking that's not necessarily the case.
- Even if there are conflicting viewpoints, there is no reason not to reflect that in a normal article instead of in the form of a threaded discussion.
- The previously informative page slowly takes the form of a message board-like dialogue instead of coherent prose.
- That's putting it too mildly. In some of the worst cases, it may even become a Flame War.
- Do you really think so?
- Duh. of course it would. You're probably one of the idiots that would cause a flame war, so get out. I hate trolls like you.
- This is mostly a problem with early forms of Wiki software, such as Ward's Wiki.
- Wait, why?
- Most newer wikis (including TV Tropes) have separate discussion pages associated with each entry, where such dialogs can occur without interfering with the actual entries; thread mode dialogs are permissible and even encouraged on these auxiliary pages.
- I beg to differ. Entry pages will occasionally fall into Thread Mode as a side effect of an Edit War.
- Seriously? Thread Mode without an actual, visible thread of bullet points responding to each other? That can't possibly happen. If we just stop using bullet points, that'll solve all our problems.
- Fine, have it your way.
- Wait, how would that fix anything? If we simply get rid of bullets, the arguments will simply devolve into * notes!note
A paragraph which includes phrases like "however" or "despite this" multiple times in sequence is usually a sign that a page has degenerated into thread mode (often started by a Justifying Edit
). However, that's not actual Thread Mode
, as it can be worthwhile to include additional perspectives and many of these edits may be justified in that sense. Despite this, it can
in a very real sense be dubbed Thread Mode
for all intents and purposes, as the focus of the article does indeed shift towards the conflict of opinion, and its flow becomes drowned in thoughtlessly tacked-on points and counterpoints. However, many people note that rewriting the text to flow better is not always possible and sometimes it may end up neutering the article of any interesting opinions. Others assert in response that having no opinions is better than having a tangled mess of opinions.
In extreme manifestations of this phenomenon, sentences stop bothering to even keep up the appearance of following the previous sentence's train of thought. The reader is subjected to perfectly fluid prose that abruptly changes its opinion one-hundred-and-eighty degrees mid-sentence, which is very jarring and ought to be avoided, but on the other hand often appropriate and highly beneficial, or at least that's what supporters of the practice say but in truth its cons outweigh its pros. Well, actually, there's no reason why it should, because most
people can obviously see that it is nothing short of psychological torture. Though to be fair—
- No. No "to be fair". You're done here.
- I thought we agreed to stop using the bullet points.
- Your obsession with getting the last word sickens me.
- As does yours.
- Shut it both of you before I take away ALL of the bullets!
- With the new YMMV tab to keep arguments away from the main pages, this really shouldn't be a problem any more.
- No. Thread Mode is bad form, period, on a YMMV page or anywhere else.
- Hey, guys, take it easy! Sure, Thread Mode isn't appropriate for wikis, but it can still be funny in the right context. Check out this bit at Penny Arcade.
- Hey, I just noticed that Walkthrough Mode is a lot like this trope, only for videogames.
- No it isn't.
- This isn't an argument, it's merely a series of contradictions!
- Anyway, the one place where Thread Mode is acceptable and, in fact, encouraged, is on the Headscratchers Pages, the Wild Mass Guessing Pages, and, of course, the actual threads on the forum.