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Message Icon Topic: Too many topics to wade through Post Reply Post New Topic
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Scott
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Quote Scott Replybullet Posted: 18 Dec 2009 at 6:32am
We are thinking of one important change when we upgrade the forums and do some sight redesigning.  One of the things we are considering is integrating the commenting for recipes and articles with the forums.  The more recent comments would be displayed underneath the article or recipe, but if there are more than 20 or so comments, they view the rest in the forums.

What this means is that comments for every recipe or article will become a forum topic.

This naturally has some advantages and disadvantages.
  1. A comment thread for every article or recipe must be put somewhere, most likely in their own forum area for recipe, and co-mingled with country specific forums in the case of country specific articles.
  2. Having the comments in the forum allow us to use the features of the forum, such as post moderation, moving posts, bad word filters, etc. without having to write any of the code from the ground up.
  3. Users would get credit for commenting on articles and recipes, just like forum posts, and would better reflect people's participation on the site, as well as recognize them with higher ranks as they participate.
  4. It would give new users something to comment about, since the articles and recipes themselves would become fodder for discussions.
If we go ahead and do this, then we would need:
  • Recipe Comments Forum
  • Country Specific Forums
  • Section Specific Forums for Article Comments
This would also result in over 300 recipe topics, and hundreds of article topics created within the forums.


Edited by Scott - 18 Dec 2009 at 6:34am
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Quote Scott Replybullet Posted: 18 Dec 2009 at 6:56am
Over the next year, CaribbeanChoice is going to go through some major changes and growth, and that means that there will be even more activity on the forums and more posts to wade through.

Sad to say, but at some point, you will not be able to follow all the topics.  Typically what happens in forums once they become a certain size, which ours has not yet, is people start breaking off into different sections of the forums.  For example, you have your recipe people, and you have your jokes people, and you have your carnival people, and your current events people.  Most people pick a couple forums they like and go their first, and only view the others if they have time.  So, they may be daily in Recipes & Cooking, but only visit General Discussion once a week or so.

To help make the forums more useful and easier to use, the following measures need to be taken:
  1. Enforcement of On-Topic Posts and Posting in the Appropriate Forums.
  2. Removal of spam.
  3. Forum areas based on what people are actually posting, or what you want them to start posting.
  4. Encourage people to post in forum areas that define topic areas, and discourage people from posting everything in the General Discussion forums by putting it lower on the list of forums, instead of the top of the list.
I think the biggest problem we have right now is that too many topics that should be in another forum are posted in the general discussion boards, thereby causing information overload.  When the forums were slow and there were not many posts, it made sense to try to build up activity in the general discussion forums, but now I think we need to encourage people to post in the other forums, if it fits.


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Quote Scott Replybullet Posted: 18 Dec 2009 at 7:07am
Ok, going through the suggestions, I see you are suggesting the following changes which I made in bold.  It looks like most are additions.  Correct me if I am wrong.  Where applicable, I asked some questions.

CaribbeanChoice Announcements (existing)

Welcome & Introductions (existing)

General Discussion (instead of Caribbean Room & Pirate Room)

Caribbean & International Cooking & Recipes (renamed existing)

Travel, Vacations, Tourism (existing)

Health (existing)

Relationships (NEW!)

Music (NEW)

Literature - Books, Poems (NEW)

Sports (NEW)

Religion (existing)

Photos (new)

Caribbean Cultural Events (existing multiple forums)

Fun Room - Jokes (existing)

Movies, Plays, Celebrities (New)

Technology (existing)

Promoting the Caribbean (existing)

Caribbean Maraketplace (existing)

World Marketplace (existing)

Webmaster Zone (existing)

Suggestions, Comments & Help (existing)

Submit an Article for Review (existing)

Test Forum (existing)

Country-Specific Forums (existing multiple forums)

Comments (How is this different from Suggestions & Comments forum?)

Whatever - where nothing else fits (same purpose of General Discussion?)





Edited by Scott - 18 Dec 2009 at 7:10am
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Quote sandra Replybullet Posted: 18 Dec 2009 at 8:13pm
Yes, Scott I added some new topics. Okay, so eliminate 'whatever and comments'. Caribbean & Pirate room is basically the same. I don't see any difference in the posts there, so it should be just called 'General Discussion'. Well, just my half-penny's worth. Feel free to ignore.
I asked for all things so that I might enjoy life; I was given life so that I might enjoy all things
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Quote Scott Replybullet Posted: 19 Dec 2009 at 1:24am
I like your new topic areas, and I think that they are needed.  We have branched into new areas of discussion, and moving some of those discussions to the new forum areas would help people find what they want to discuss, as well as clear up the general discussion forum areas.

At this point I am not going to combine the Caribbean Room and the Pirate Room, mostly because I would have to move all the posts from one into the other, making it even more cluttered than it is now.  There currently is no easy way to mass move a lot of posts.  They have to be done one by one.

I'll add your new forum areas right now. Thanks for the suggestion. Thumbs%20Up
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Quote Scott Replybullet Posted: 19 Dec 2009 at 3:14am
Okay, the new forum areas have been added.  Enjoy.
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Quote Scott Replybullet Posted: 19 Dec 2009 at 3:55am
Originally posted by sandra

Yes, Scott I added some new topics. Okay, so eliminate 'whatever and comments'. Caribbean & Pirate room is basically the same. I don't see any difference in the posts there, so it should be just called 'General Discussion'. Well, just my half-penny's worth. Feel free to ignore.

I've noticed that a lot of our posts in the General Discussion forums are more like chat, rather than actual discussions.  For example, there is a lot of discussions like "Where is everyone?" and "How was your day?" and stuff like that.  It would be nice to be able to separate the chat from the discussions, but I am not sure how to define the difference between those.
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Quote sandra Replybullet Posted: 19 Dec 2009 at 7:05am
Scott, how about a topic thread, "Chat, just shooting the breeze", or just "Shooting the breeze"? Then for the discussion, 'General Discussion'. Play around with some ideas. You will come up with the right one.

How about 'The Gab Bag' for the 'chat' thread?

Edited by sandra - 19 Dec 2009 at 10:22am
I asked for all things so that I might enjoy life; I was given life so that I might enjoy all things
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