Direct from the Netherlands – It’s Ireen22!

I’m particularly excited about this week’s Contributor Corner post because it’s the first time we’ve had an opportunity to highlight someone direct from the Netherlands. That’s right! Ireen22 joins us this week from across the pond where Dutch is prevalent and royalty rules. Here’s more – enjoy!

First Name: Irene
Occupation: I’m 16 years old and still in school. But I like acting and sometimes I do that (I don’t get paid for it…yet) and I give drama classes as a volunteer to people who have a certain handicaps. They really love the drama classes! I also babysit sometimes.

What is your user name and how did it come about?

My user name is Ireen22. I came up with Ireen because people who speak English pronounce my name as Eireen. And friends used to call me Ireen. And the 22? I have no idea how I came up with that. I’ve used this user name before when I was 12 years old. Maybe it sounded cool in English back then (haha).

Where in the world do you hail from? What makes this place special?

I was born and still live in a city in the Netherlands. I don’t live in Amsterdam by the way. I like the Netherlands because we have delicious food that everybody should try. Like drop, you know it as liquorice and kroket and frikandel. I also like it because it’s a safe country, no earthquakes or volcanoes or things like that. I also like it because I speak Dutch and not many people do. I like languages and like to teach other people some Dutch words and sentences. It’s also a hard language so I’m glad that I’m native in it.

How did you first discover

I was searching on Google for information about torture (I know it’s a horrible subject but it was for a history class). I came upon the site on my mobile phone and became a member. I was on vacation so I had no idea what the site would be like on a computer. When I returned home and saw it I was immediately addicted.

Have you ever been somewhere that was almost perfect?

A place that was almost perfect? No I haven’t discovered a place like that yet. But I hope that I will one day…

What is your favorite thing to do on

I like to do many different things here. But I like to help new contributors and to make the site better! I like to do almost everything here.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

I’m not really proud of anything, but I was very surprised when I got the offer to become a Supervisor because I just finished my 11th SPA task. I think that I was proud for a minute back then.

Growing up, what was your favorite cartoon character? Why?

My favorite cartoon character? Hmm…I don’t really know but I do know that I liked the series Tom & Jerry and I liked Cookie Monster and Elmo from Sesame Street. Those really aren’t cartoon characters are they? Why Tom & Jerry? I was 5 and I think that I liked that little mouse because he was very brave. I think that I wanted to be that brave, too.

Our newest site: Coupons by

The holiday season is upon us! Less than 30 days until Black Friday, the traditional start of the holiday shopping season. More than ever before, consumers are turning to the web for deal-hunting on their holiday purchases. So to help our users find the best bargains on the web, we are excited to announce the launch of Coupons by!

What is Coupons by It’s an aggregation of the web’s hottest deals — coupons, free shipping offers, discounts, and much more — from popular online retailers such as Best Buy, Target, Macy’s, and Pottery Barn. But what makes this new site particularly special is that we’ll be combining all of this with the community-based Q and A for which is known and trusted. With a slight twist: because of the short-lived nature of coupons as well as the opinion-based nature of deal-hunting, we have introduced the multiple answer format for our new Coupons site. Our consumer research has indicated this is the best way to help shoppers, and we’re excited about rolling out this new approach.

Why are we launching our Coupons site? We have found that consumers frequently have questions about the stores and products they want to buy, as well as about the coupons they find. Within our vast community, we know we have plenty of shopping experts who can answer a wide range of shopping-related questions, and we want to share their expertise with our broad audience to users to give them more confidence that they are getting the most for their money.

To celebrate the launch of Coupons, we’re giving away $100 gift cards every day for the next two weeks! Just answer the question posted on the Coupons homepage for a chance to win. And, double your chances to win by “Liking” us on Facebook! Check out all the best bargains at your favorite retailer, then let us know what you think in the comments. Happy Savings!

Techie2013 Goes Trunkquack?

What do you get when you merge an elephant with a duck? Well, in this case you just might get this week’s Featured Contributor, Techie2013! Find out why!

First Name: Harry
Occupation: Student and Head Technical Support for Web Hosting Company

What is your user name and how did it come about?

Well, I am a technical person, dealing with all aspects of computers. I am a huge fan of community management, and this is normally where I spend most of my time. Also 2013 is the year I graduate. So, thus, Techie2013 was born March 2, 2011.

Where in the world do you hail from? What makes this place special?

I hail from Europe, even though I live in the US. Life over there is rather simple and quiet.

How did you first discover

I was searching on Google for a computer question. I can’t remember what the question was, but it sure did make me wiki addicted!

If you could be any animal, which one would you be and why?

I do like elephants because they are smart, but also maybe a duck, as they can fly. I know! I could be an elephanduck! 🙂

What is your favorite thing to do on

It varies from time-to-time. One day I will be recategorizing and answering questions and dealing with alternates, and the next day dealing with RSA and vandals! Vandals beware!

What accomplishments are you proud of?

Becoming a Mentor, as I couldn’t have done it with my awesome Mentor, Hooweestik. He has worked with me many hours and is a great guy to get help from. To this day, combine all the times we have talked on video, the phone, and chat, I’m guessing we have talked over 200 hours! Wow!

What is the craziest thing that has ever happened to you?

There are too many to choose from, so I’ll just choose one: We are singing in choir, and I ended up getting increasingly louder, and I am rolling my R’s as I go. Eventually I get to the point to where I am hitting so high, I crack, and everyone falls on the floor laughing. Good day, minus the sore throat!

AdamHughes96: He IS the Champion, My Friends

He’s a positive outlook, Queen loving wiki-er who hails from The Crossroads of America. He also happens to be this week’s Featured Contributor; meet AdamHughes96 – an extremely active contributor involved in five (FIVE!) special programs onsite! That’s a lot of wiki-ing! Let’s find out more about this dedicated individual…

Name: Adam
Occupation: High School Student

What is your user name and how did it come about?

. It’s my name and favorite number (no real reason for the number)

Where in the world do you hail from? What makes this place special?

Indiana and you know the saying: There’s more than corn in Indiana!

How did you first discover

I needed answers for homework, and then realized all of the fun stuff you can do.

What is your favorite type of music? What is the last song you listened to?

I like classic rock, and my favorite band is Queen.

What is your favorite thing to do on

Batch recategorization. I love how it all works.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

My silver contributor status and becoming a Supervisor.

What makes you unique?

I love helping others and showing people to the site. I am also a really big Liverpool football club fan. Go Reds!

Glass half full or half empty? Why?

Glass full because life is more optimistic when you see things in a positive way. 🙂

Welcome to the Darksyde…

“Everyone is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody.”
~Mark Twain

As the great poet points out, we’re all said to have a “dark side.” In fact, even a Q&A site like has one – with several BIG exceptions. Our dark side is actually bright and cheery, and spelled with a “y” not an “I”. That’s right. It’s this week’s Featured Contributor – Darksyde!

First Name: Jess
Occupation: Drug dealer — er — pharmacist/chemist

What is your user name and how did it come about?

Darksyde. It stands for the dark side of the moon, the unexplored right under our nose, the mystery in the familiar.

Where in the world do you hail from? What makes this place special?

I’m from Greenville, SC. It’s in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, where my mother’s people come from. The land is beautiful (“all green hills” as a Navajo once described it when I visited New Mexico) — green mountains towering on the horizon, mountain brooks rushing past on the way to the coast, and as our city name implies, plenty of plant life, even downtown. Greenville started as a mill town, but we’ve incorporated the now defunct factories into a park at the center of town which features a river walk and suspension bridge over the falls. We’re small enough to keep traffic of all sorts to a bearable level, but large enough to have pretty much whatever you may need within a few minutes’ drive. South Carolina’s slogan is “Smiling Faces, Beautiful Faces” and it’s pretty much true (the smiling faces bit, I mean — the beautiful places is always true) — most people in the Deep South are raised to be polite and friendly, especially if they know that you’re just visiting. You’ll always find a few rude people no matter where you go, but if you come to SC, you’ll find more smiles than frowns.

How did you first discover

Looking for information!

You can only pick one. Banjo, butterfly or babbling brook. Which one and why?

I’d take the brook, because it’s endlessly changing. I might get tired of banjo music and butterflies really only flap about and drink nectar.

What is your favorite thing to do on

I like putting questions into the proper categories and merging duplicate questions.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

On WikiAnswers, I’ve won the Charity AnswerThon and come in as runner up/honorable mention in one AnswerThon and several WAmmy awards. In real life, I’ve written and sold my short stories, successfully participated in NaNoWriMo several times, and am finishing my first fiction novel.

What makes you unique?

My quirky way of looking at the world.

What is the most challenging part of being an Supervisor?

Keeping all of the zillions of variations of the same bloody question merged into the main one is a never-ending battle. I also have a moral problem with all these kids blatantly cheating on their tests and schoolwork — I tend to trash anything that starts “which of the following” or with any number (as in 4. What is the___). I find answering the questions themselves an enjoyable challenge — I like looking up answers that I don’t know, thus learning as the asker is learning.

Five most popular questions on Steve Jobs

Legendary businessman Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple, passed away this week. Although a very private person, Jobs was a public icon and very revered in the tech scene. The ubiquitous white earbuds you see every day are a testament to how revolutionary his “i”nventions have been.

Since the news of his death first hit the internet, contributors have flooded the site with questions about Apple’s mastermind. Here are five of the most popular questions on Steve Jobs this week, based on traffic:

Who are Steve Jobs’ children?

How did Steve Jobs die?

Was Steve Jobs a Christian?

What did Steve Jobs invent?

Did Steve Jobs and Bill Gates work together?

For more Steve Jobs Q&A visit his category page here.

Killing Time with Jonathan Begg

When asked, “What brought you to” a typical response is, “I was searching for something on Google.” This week’s Featured Contributor, however, claims that “Just doodling” is what landed him smack dab in the middle of the wonderful world known as Seems killing time was a good way to discover the world’s bestest Q&A site. Let’s find out more about Jonathan Begg and his journey to our community.

What is your user name and the history behind it?

Jonathan Begg – just my own name

What is your first name?


What is your age?

Just turned 64. Now who died at that age? Al Jolson…

Would you like to tell us about your family?

Scots-Welsh. My great-grandfather just missed having the first car in Glasgow (G1). But he was a fine broth of a boy, so they gave him a special ‘G0’. That looked like GO! – a much better sign for the front of your classic Daimler!

Do you have any pets?

Not allowed in this block, thank goodness. But in our childhood in the country, we grew up with a female cat who was no less than a goddess. Forty-three years after her death, she is still very much around.

Where do you live, how long have you lived there and why do you like the area?

Queensway, London. That’s between Paddington and Notting Hill, on the North-west corner of the park. Lived here since 1972. Can’t quite pin-down why I like it, except it’s an easy walk from Marble Arch. Good mix of gracious and Bohemian, maybe. Not as good as it used to be, of course… (Roll over, grandpa)

Where did you grow up and do you have any special memories of your childhood?

English boarding-school is the real answer. And a Kentish village, half-genteel with modernised farmhouses, but some mighty odd families down the lane, still living the medieval life.

What educational information would you like to share?

Seriously old-style prep school which had to fold, hopefully not just because I was the last Head Boy! The headmaster had been a pupil there himself, way back, and wanted to keep it unchanged. Curiously, his own headmaster had insisted on keeping it mid-Victorian, so that was the culture we absorbed. For some reason, I fit in well and moved up faster than any boy since 1925.

Next was a well-known Public School, which I won’t name. One day, my father and another old-boy of the school visited the place, bringing their wives, who had never been there before. The wives both said it was like entering Dracula’s village – cold shudder, evil spirits. I can confirm all that. It should have been good. But it wasn’t.

What are some of your past or present occupations?

Freelance advertising copywriter and travel journalist. A lot of other jobs, too, starting with the Army, where I just got in on the last Imperial war – the capture of Aden Crater (now in South Yemen) as a rifleman in Mad Mitch’s battalion, the 1st Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders. It was the last time a Scottish unit went into action to the sound of the pipes (with real pipers, that is, not the audio version they used in the armoured personnel carriers in Iraq, though I’m sure that was just as stirring.) There was a bonfire of uniforms on the last night, and I was allowed to rescue a set of khaki drill, very comfortable, which I wore for years, working on building sites.

What are your key areas of knowledge, interest or expertise?

American Civil War. I don’t know why it continues to fascinate me. Probably ‘so near and so far’. I can remember meeting my great-grandmother, who was born in the year of Sherman’s March to the Sea. Anyway, Wiki questioners are regularly treated to my dubious brand of expertise on this topic.

Do you have any collections or hobbies?

Once collected a lot of stamps, but they were stolen. Not much room in this little studio-flat anyway. Not sure I trust collectors too much. I think they’re looking for a perfect, well-ordered world with fixed points. You can take escapism too far.

What do you like to do for recreation?

Ironically, the freelance career ties you down as much as it liberates you. Never get that Monday or Friday feeling.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

Rank Screen Awards 1976, a perfume commercial, runner-up in its class (Second out of two!).n And I once had a girlfriend who was the last wig-maker in Reykjavik.

What are your special goals or dreams?

Let’s get through Wednesday.

How would you describe yourself or personality?

That’s for others to judge. Remember Rabbie Burns?

“O, wid some God the giftie gie us
To see ourselves as others see us”

What keeps you coming back to

Therapeutic. While I’m waiting for the coffee to percolate, it gives me time to unflag a few questions or edit a few categories.

What is your favorite activity?

Giving the most complete answer I can – perhaps definitive – to a sensible question.