What Do Forums Need?

Discussion in 'Help Requests' started by Ken Anderson, Feb 11, 2015.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    It is interesting that this has become about long posts because I just went through all three pages of this thread, searching for uses of the word "long" and the only time that I have used the word in reference to long posts was in the opening post of this thread, on February 11 of last year, more than a year ago. Other than that, I spoke about long-tailed keywords, about the importance of splitting long paragraphs up into short bits for easier reading, and made other uses of the word, such as long as, but the references that I made to the length of someone's posts was to state, more than a year ago, that in posts that are only one or two lines long, the search engines have difficulty determining what the discussion is supposed to be about, or in deciding whether it is worthwhile even to include in its index, and I stand by that because it's a fact.

    My last suggestion was about content, in the hopes of encouraging people or giving ideas about what might be perfect topics for the forum. Someone mentioned in the past few posts that we are not very many and, although the forum has been growing, this is true. I don't know if I want the forum to become huge but I would like it to become larger than it is and, having run several forums before, I know that a healthy forum needs to be replenished with new people from time to time, by which I mean adding new people to the mix, not replacing the ones that are already here.

    I also know that a forum, such as this, needs to have a mixture of useful, insightful, and meaningful content as well as threads that are silly or fun, intended purely for entertainment, largely because the silly stuff doesn't tend to have a focused topic, is usually not indexed by the search engines, and does not serve to bring new people into the forum. That doesn't mean that they are wrong, or that I am suggesting you not do that, but that discussion forums should more closely represent the people who are participating in them, and I believe that while we may all have our silly moments, these are not the sum of our experiences.

    We've all probably known someone who never seems to be serious. Everything is a joke, and nothing seems to effect them in any meaningful way. While these people may be fun to be around, it is hard to think of them as friends or to feel as if we actually knew them. That's because real people aren't like that.

    We also think, and do, practical things, and have learned skills either by experience, through trial and error, or from other people, books, films, etc. These should also have a place in this forum. We have also learned things that have helped us to become who we are, and not all of these things are silly or entertaining, yet there is a place here for these experiences to be shared. That's what my last post was about and yes, in most cases these topics are going to require more than one or two lines, but I wasn't discussing the length of posts.

    There is also a place for the silly threads, as they help keep people here, and nowhere have I suggested that there was anything wrong with them.
     
    #76
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
  2. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Yes, there is a need for both on a forum I was just stating what I look for in a forum. If I want factual information I will google it, if I want opinions then I'll ask here. I'm not necessarily going to take advice from a forum though when it's coming from someone I don't even know.

    As for google searches, if I ask a question and the search returns a forum with someone's reply I don't click on that source. Just like Yahoo answers. :)

    I do want to add though that advise from the people I know on here I trust.
     
    #77
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
  3. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    Of course, you don't know the people who have created the web sites or the videos where you might get information, either. Your statement that if you want factual information you will Google it is precisely what I am talking about, though. When forum posts are based on discernible topics, they come up when someone Googles the topic, and that's what we need in order to bring new people here.

    When I first bought a Mac after several years of using a Windows based machine, I would often Google questions that I had about using the Mac and since I had already tried reading the manual, the most useful places that I found on my searches were Mac-oriented forums. That's still the case, as I am trying to figure out how to do something that I don't do on a regular basis, or when I am having a problem that I am trying to figure out with the computer or one of the apps that I am using, and my searches often bring up Mac forums that have the answers that I am looking for. You may not take advice from people you don't know, but many of us do, especially when the people we do know don't have the answers we're looking for.
     
    #78
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  4. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Well Ken, I'll end this with I'm all for whatever keeps this forum going. :)

    I think it's doing quite well, it seems active enough all through my viewing day.
     
    #79
  5. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    Suddenly, I realized I don't even really know what this thread was about anymore. Attention span of a gerbil. No further comments.
     
    #80
  6. Holly Saunders

    Holly Saunders Veteran Member
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    LOL...well I'm still with it and understand it..perhaps because I've been a moderator on several forums, I have an idea what is going on and what's needed.....:)
     
    #81
  7. Avigail David

    Avigail David Well-Known Member
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    Lol! No worries, you're still here.

    Everytime I come to SCO and read posts and finish through, I never feel it as a duty. I actually find everyone here a delight-- engaging ourselves with different points of view and are free to express them and be able to hear from others, a well.

    I feel it's alright to be myself here. In some form of release of what's been brewing in my head all day. At Seniors Club Only, I get that certain vibe that it's okay to speak of them, mostly conservative views in nature-- from my heart.

    In short, I need not filter out things to say to accomodate the creepy PC culture.
     
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  8. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    Avigail, what a lovely post. I totally agree and it's nice to meet you, I haven't had the pleasure before. :)
     
    #83
  9. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I apologize for even posting this, something set me off this morning and I responded like a baby when I shouldn't have.

    In my defense, Pickles woke me up too early. :)
     
    #84
  10. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    You're fine, Chrissy, you didn't sound like you think.:) That doesn't excuse Pickles, though!:p
     
    #85
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  11. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Lol, hope he's good tonight...I'm tired.
     
    #86
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  12. Avigail David

    Avigail David Well-Known Member
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    . '
    Hi @Chrissy Page We all need some kind of hugs every now and then. We all have our share of bad and good days. Here at Seniors Only, we try to hear each other about how our day has been or how we plan to make our day would be. Some days are dull, some are filled with challenges. Anyhow, that's part of being human.

    And here at Seniors, we are allowed to be human. ;)So, we'll be just fine in our senior years. Haha!
    :p
     
    #87
  13. Avigail David

    Avigail David Well-Known Member
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    Thank you, @Ruby Begonia You've added smiles to a very fullfilling day for me. My husband just picked me up from my very first time employed work at the cafe-restaurant my daughter works at.

    On our way there while my husband was showing me the easier route to and from work (where to park all day without being fined and all that.), nervousness kept me jittery. Imagine, for the very first time, I would get paid as The Dishwasher! Only on Saturdays while my husband looks after my two homeschooling children.

    So, posting this with your comment completed my day-- with my aching legs propped up. Thanks again, Ruby.:)
     
    #88
  14. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    @Avigail David , your daughter owns a cafe-restaurant? I'm interested! Tell us more? Can we look at the menu? I hope you are paid well for washing the dishes! How many day a week do you work?:)
     
    #89
  15. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I just looked at your profile Avigail, you are the age I was when my husband died. Also, your daughter was expecting her first child in January, did she have it?
     
    #90
  16. Avigail David

    Avigail David Well-Known Member
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    Oops, sorry @Ruby Begonia She works there as one of the staff. She studied Industrial Cookery in college in 2011 after high school at home.

    I was offered the dishwashing job and I started on the 20th Feb, Saturday. I think the owner liked me as much as she highly commends my daughter as a hard worker. Then, she offered me Tuesdays, as well. I was very pleased but couldn't accept it because I still homeschool my two school-aged children.

    So, my eldest daughter has offered to look after them, because her little 1 1/2 year old son is happy whenever his 10 and 12 years old uncle and aunty are around to play with and read to him. And a little baby, son, was just born 2 weeks ago.

    Looks like I will be working 2 days a week. Yey!The pay is really good. Nothing formally talked about yet. I will receive it fortnightly.
     
    #91
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2016
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  17. Holly Saunders

    Holly Saunders Veteran Member
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    So today was your first day was it, Avigail? :)
     
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  18. Avigail David

    Avigail David Well-Known Member
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    Hi @Chrissy Page. My warmest regards and offer of peace and love to you about your husband's passing, Chrissy.

    My second daughter has had her baby girl in January. So, she will stop for a while studying Bachelor of Arts majoring in classical music, I think.

    My eldest daughter has had her son on two weeks ago this February. So, it's pretty exciting around here.: :)
     
    #93
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2016
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  19. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Thanks, it was 12 yrs ago. Congratulations on the grandbabies.
     
    #94
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  20. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    @Avigail David, sorry I misunderstood about the cafe. Congratulations on the grands from me, too. Enjoy what's left of the weekend.
     
    #95
  21. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    What do forums need?
    1. Thread headings that reflect the actual topic of the thread.
    2. On-topic posts within the thread.
    3. Longer posts are more helpful than shorter posts.
    4. Longer threads are more helpful than shorter threads.
    The above is what is necessary in order for the forum to do well in search engine results. Once we have that, add time and we'll do well.

    Of course, forums need more than a good position in the search engine results. That's where everything else that has been discussed here comes into play, as well.
     
    #96
  22. Sifu Phil Bonifonte

    Sifu Phil Bonifonte Well-Known Member
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    Wow, Ken - I think you're really off the mark here.

    People have so much crap piled on them in the real world, they often come to a forum such as this one to relax, to forget about their problems, to smile and even laugh a bit.

    Not everyone comes to a forum to solve a specific problem - they can Google anything bothering them and find much more authoritative sources than a forum. What are the majority of problems experienced by seniors? Isn't it medical problems? Who in their right minds would take a stranger's advice on medical issues? They'd go to WebMD or MedicineNet or other authority sites.

    Comedy, satire and parody doesn't draw in new members? I guess I'll be leaving then, because that's the bulk of what I do. Don't bother about the deep times I experience and post - they aren't really showing what I'm like, right? There aren't really any people like that. Nobody has ever experienced an "aha!" moment from my posts.

    And of course, I have no friends and nobody really knows me.

    (Note: the above two paragraphs are "sarcasm" - add that to parody, satire and silliness)


    Now I'm confused - so silly threads don't bring in new members, but they keep the regulars here? You just suggested that silly threads were not useful on a forum - you can't have it both ways.
     
    #97
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  23. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I agree with you Phil about the informative posts, I wouldn't search a forum for info. For one thing it's baised and probably incorrect. Just opinions of everyday people.

    Most go to forums to interact with like minded people and have some fun. A few serious discussions can happen but for the most part it's for entertainment.
     
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  24. Sifu Phil Bonifonte

    Sifu Phil Bonifonte Well-Known Member
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    Totally agree.

    There ARE a few forums that successfully integrate serious and silly - City-Data is one of them, but they have the advantage of being huge (1.9 million members), and of having started off as a totally serious site for information on cities. Only when their membership grew and started requesting a place to just kick back did the forum add 50 "normal" sections such as "Relationships" (most of my own posts were there LOL) and "Jokes".
     
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  25. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    There are a few too big senior sites that I've probably joined then never posted or posted only a few times. Too big isn't good either, unless you got in at the beginning and know everyone, you'll always feel like an outsider.
     
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