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Who/What is CommunityAnswer on Home Depot site?
Old 01-06-2019, 09:52 AM   #1
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Who/What is CommunityAnswer on Home Depot site?

Something I've noticed for a while, on the Q&A section of a product page on Home Depot's website, many questions are answered by someone/thing with profile "CommunityAnswer". He/she/it just parrots back something from the description. The profile looks like anyone else's.

https://homedepot.ugc.bazaarvoice.co...er/profile.htm

At first I thought this was HD staff assigned to help under this pseudonym, but the answers are just mechanical. Then I thought maybe it is just some bored/twisted person with some sort of OCD behavior issue. Maybe it is a 'robot' from Home Depot, or maybe someone else testing a robot? It does a poor job, it just repeats listed info with no added intelligence.

334,985 'answers' as of this writing.

Anyone know anything about this? Curiosity is getting to me.

-ERD50
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Old 01-06-2019, 10:51 AM   #2
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Sure looks like a bot. Lots of people ask silly questions that they would know the answers to if they just read the product descriptions. A bot can answer all of those questions pretty easily, but distinguishing questions that it should answer from those it should not answer is a much harder problem for an AI or Neural Network program to tackle.

My guess is they're trying to compete with Amazon's questions and answers, which are provided by real people, many of whom are a lot more clueless than the Home Depot bot.
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Old 01-06-2019, 11:12 AM   #3
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From time to time, I have ordered from HD online, and often get an e mail asking me to answer a question about the product I bought. If I do answer, it is reviewed by HD for spam, then posted verbatim .

I have answered a couple of times. And my answer was posted verbatim, even with a negative slant about the product.

Sometimes it says answered by the manufacturer, sometimes answered by HD product specialist. The later usually do just parrot the catalog description.
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Old 01-06-2019, 11:41 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cathy63 View Post
Sure looks like a bot. Lots of people ask silly questions that they would know the answers to if they just read the product descriptions. A bot can answer all of those questions pretty easily, but distinguishing questions that it should answer from those it should not answer is a much harder problem for an AI or Neural Network program to tackle.

My guess is they're trying to compete with Amazon's questions and answers, which are provided by real people, many of whom are a lot more clueless than the Home Depot bot.
Yeah, I guess that makes sense - some people won't actually read the description, but might read an 'answer' to a specific question, even if it is just parroting the description.

Mostly those people would just be lazy, why not just read the description, but in some cases, the info might get a little buried. The downside is, people like me actually looking for additional info have to wade through this noise, only to learn that it doesn't add anything. And you usually need to click to see the answer/s before you see it is from "CommunityAnswer".

Maybe I'll try writing to Home Depot about this, maybe they don't see the downside to their customers with actual normal reading comprehension skills!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakewood90712 View Post
From time to time, I have ordered from HD online, and often get an e mail asking me to answer a question about the product I bought. If I do answer, it is reviewed by HD for spam, then posted verbatim .

I have answered a couple of times. And my answer was posted verbatim, even with a negative slant about the product.

Sometimes it says answered by the manufacturer, sometimes answered by HD product specialist. The later usually do just parrot the catalog description.
I've got those emails too. Not sure I ever answered one, as I didn't really have anything meaningful to add "it's a 10-penny nail!". But some of the customer answers are very helpful, some not so much. Seller or HD answers usually pretty good, it varies.

Amazon has gone overboard, IMO. There are sometimes hundreds of Q/A's so it's too much to wade through. Repetitious, and mostly answered in the description ("Who is buried in Grant's Tomb" level questions - arghhh!).

It has been 'busy' - up to 335,003 'answers from 334,985 'answers' in my OP ~ 3 hours ago.

-ERD50
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