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While in an ideal universe--you know, a frictionless plane--people would never make mistakes and egos would never get in the way, we don't live there. Often when editing someone else's text, he or she will raise questions about what you've done. Posting a question on the page in question only decreases the SignalToNoiseRatio. Conversely, often you will want to ask someone about a recent addition to the site. Similarly, you want to avoid posting a question on the "mainstream" of the site. The change summary feature just doesn't cut it.

On a wiki, we EnlargeSpace by convention to create namepages, where we normally leave personal messages. It helps if people have a namepage, of course. In this case, the namepage serves as a MessageBox. Since most of us are vain, or at least highly protective of our FrontLawns, or even extremely sensitive to seeing our names, it is expected we will notice changes to our own namepages on RecentChanges.

On most sites, e-mail is in fact the de facto MessageBox. Interestingly, even though many participants have elected to post their e-mail addresses, most personal communication on a wiki is done in public through the namepages. It's one part OpenProcess and another part comraderie. Why leave the party just to ask a question? It's rude somehow, don't you think?

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