Minimum post length

Having a minlength 10 rule in other places is not an argument to establish it here. Fact is that the old forum did not have one and did not need one. Overregulation is never a good idea. Such rules should only be implemented when the necessity is obiously, not in advance.


If “+1” posts were rare enough in the old forum that there was no reason to make a rule about them, then that’s all the more reason why we don’t need a rule here either. Besides, there is an alternative now, so “+1” posts will become even rarer.
Conclusion: we don’t need this rule! Trust the users. It will work without a minimum number of characters - the OSM forum is not a chat room for pubescent teenagers.
And if it doesn’t work, we can always think about a new rule.

I hear these arguments over and over again. What annoys me about it is that the proof alone is not forthcoming. And it seems to me that the arguments of those who would like to see it abolished, or at least radically reduced, are not being addressed.

translated with Deepl

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If practice will show that this forum will be spoiled by (too) short replies and TLA’s, we can always later, consent based, imply such a rule to prevent that. History shows that the old forum has never been " a chat room for pubescent teenagers", so I would give this the benefit of the doubt. Trust the users and if some don’t like very short answers: just ignore these.


This sounds like a very good proposal to me.

What would constitute reasonable proof in your opinion? We’re talking about subjective perception and aggregated fatigue from a pattern distributed across the forum as a whole, not clear-cut cases of overwhelming content concentrated in (for the sake of example) huge threads full of +1s.

How could that perception and fatigue be measured? A survey of forum users? And even then, consider that those who are the most affected by forum noise are the least likely to engage in yet another forum post, so the outcome of such a survey would likely be biased in favor of those who are the most active and tolerant of higher post frequency.

Unless there’s a practical way to collect the data that would be accepted as evidence, I don’t think it’s fair to demand hard evidence of a phenomenon that multiple people have expressed concern with already, thus dismissing those expressions of concern as baseless.

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Hi all,

Since this has been a very active discussion and most opinions/positions have been already shared, the @forums-governance team will review and take in consideration them all and come back with a decision in the coming days.

Thanks again everyone for engaging in this topic!


Now two weeks have passed and @nukeador is back at the keyboard.
What’s your choice @forums-governance?

I hope you are not playing for time or have forgotten and I hope you make a good choice!

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The @forums-governance team discussed about this and we decided to change the limit to 10.

If there is a strong desire for more emojis, we can discuss it in a separate topic.

Thank you all!

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…!! …


I get the frustration… The main reason for the minimum requirement is to try keep replies to something that adds to the discussion, they are emailed to 100s of people in some cases.

If the reply is “just” a emoji showing sentiments, it is best done via the emoji tool. The initial 20 character was a discourse default, their default are generally quite well thought through. 10 character is an attempt to reach a compromise.


truth is, we never had a problem with short answers that would have been comparable to all the hazzle we already had with the newly imposed limits here, and all the discussions around it. 10 is better than 20, but meaningfull contributions cannot be enforced and someone can write hundreds of words without saying something meaningful. Generally, more concise is better for everybody.


Thousands even :weary:. I appreciate those who take the time to revise their writing.


in this topic nukeador wrote

I hope, You make sure @forums-governance discuss about this request again too!

Once again, forum government members themselves provide the arguments:

And the following arguments from other users …


That was seven weeks ago and … nothing!

Hey, if you don’t want to change anything or if I’m annoying you, at least have the courage to say so. The problem has been raised many times and is observed again and again in the posts, even now after the so-called compromise with 10 characters.
However, to completely ignore this and not respond at all sucks.

Not even a private message to my fellow moderators with a simple curt “done” can be written. This is still very frustrating.

No, the issue has not been resolved!



On more occasions I have noticed that this new forum software meets all the design goals of a repressive company. It is a mystery how this could have slipped into OSM.

On top of that, the discussion is simply aborted by someone who says: You’ll do what I want, whatever your complaints. Discussion closed.

I agree, the two top annoyances of the “new” forum (enforced minimum post length and no “rational“ disagreement reaction, only emotional reactions), have been repeatedly brought up, it seems the changes would be widely uncontested and require no effort (they are just settings), but still after more than a year nothing moves.

Thanks for pointing this out, the restriction on private message length has been removed.