I am sure I'll get all sorts of flack for saying this, but I think that people may be thinking the same thing I am thinking and I thought it might be beneficial to get a discussion going. Do we prefer this new forum format over the old one?, or do we like the old way better? It seems to me that the activity/posts per day has significantly decreased since we have switched over to this new format. I realize change always takes a while to adjust to, but its been a while now and I personally think that this new format has diminished the quality of the forum. I love the new website as a whole for the most part, but I just feel that the forum isnt as active anymore, and it is bumming me out. Does any one else agree? can we discuss the pros and cons of the new site v. the old site? Julie, I hope it doesn't bother you that I am opening this discussion, and I realize it is ultimately your decision as it is your site, but I just want a forum format that facilitates the most discussion. It would still totally be possible to go back to the old site, its still bookmarked on my computer and people can still post on it. Just thought it would be interesting to get others opinions.
I think the main reason the activity has gone down a little is that now you need to register to be able to post and some people don't like registering on websites so fewer people on the forum = less activity. Also, when people want to address a message to just one person, they don't put it on the forum anymore but on the wall of the said person or they just send a message so that's also bit less activity on the forum.
Personally, I like it better the way it is now because registration means no more trolls and I love the presentation of seeing all the answers to one post on the same page, as well as the post coming up at the top of the list when somebody responds to it so that you know what's new on the forum at first sight.
Hi Meghan! I liked the old forum better because I could easily see the new posts compared to what I have already read. I feel like I have to keep going back to each post to be sure I've read all the responses. Call me old-school, but I liked everything on one page and color-coded. I love everything else on the forum, and I didn't mind having to register. Thank you for being brave enough to ask. Julie is a great person and I'm sure she cares what the regulars think. In turn, the people who respect Julie will visit no matter how she decides to run the forum.
Have a great day everyone!
I have also noticed the reduction in number of posts and replies. It might be because there are fewer posts held on one page than the previous forum, where people would answer older posts- now maybe posters don't bother checking p 2. I generally like the new site but I agree that the format of the discussion board is currently not as interesting or accessible as the old one. Maybe a combination of the two styles would work better. It's easy to sign in once you're registered; it just seems like there are fewer people posting for some reason. Cecile made a good point that you can reply to a video or a specific person etc so there is less traffic on the main board... Maybe there just aren't topics people are interested in discussing ? I also noticed that some old regulars do not seem to have signed up...this is a good topic to discuss ! Thanks for bringing it up, Meghan; I was thinking the same thing !
I think that perhaps the registration thing may be a deterrent. Even though it is really easy to register, I am sure people don't realize that. I agree that it is good that registration keeps out the trolls, but i sometimes think it is good when random people submit comments because it offers other perspectives and sometimes other information that none of us regular posters know. I think it would be simple to go back to the old forum but still keep this new site. Just have a link to here: http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/ on the site for the old forum and we could go back to using it. Julie, how do you feel about this discussion?
I'm glad you brought it up, Meghan. I've been thinking about this, too.
First, obviously, new things take some getting used to. Surely, posts will increase once more people get used to the new format.
Second, surely less people are posting because, as others have said, they're uncomfortable logging in before posting. Frankly, I like this much better because I was kind of tired of being subjected to reading things from 'anonymous' posters or posters that don't like to be held accountable to what they want to say. And, then there is far less (or perhaps even none) of the don't-worry-we-love-you-and-support-you posts that are no longer necessary because some 'anonymous' person chose to spew unnecessary or mean comments in the first place. Frankly, however, I can't believe it's taken this long for the lurkers to come up with a fake picture/name and begin posting garbage, again. Perhaps, they're concerned about what Julie may or may not be able to see with her administration tools.
I just think the new format is far more efficient and professional. It just takes getting used to. It's easy to follow whether or not something new has been written on a certain topic. Right next to the original topic, it says how many replies there have been, and from whom and when the last post was written. You don't even need to click on the thread to view. Just read the title of the thread, and look right next to it to see if there are any new replies since the last time you checked it.
I agree with everyone, unfortunately. I think the old forum is easier to read, however, it is difficult to keep away people who want to post anonymously. I really like seeing the member's pages on this site and knowing who is posting. Just so everyone is aware, there is a link to the old forum on the home page here (on the list on the left hand side of the page) that says "Old Forum."
The main reason for wanting to discontinue the old forum is that it is very expensive (unless I allow the ads to go back on and limit the bandwidth). This new site is also quite expensive and, as you know, it doesn't generate any income so it's all coming out of my pocket. Since I agree that the old forum is easier to read, I have postponed canceling it entirely until I could make up my mind. The customer service at Network 54 is non-existent, which means that there is no one to call, no one that answers emails, and no one to speak to about my options.
In the meantime, feel free to post on the old forum and I will look into reducing my costs and see what I can come up with.
I personally feel better about having people register before posting. I do like the ability to see all of the discussions though, I admit that I haven't gotten used to the new way of posting (which doesn't mean that I "don't" like it) --- but on the same hand - The new forum feels more personal to me. I agree with most of what has been said on this discussion. The new forum hasn't resulted in my posting less, I don't think.... I've reduced it just because school started back up for me and I am crazy busy more than I was. I still read the posts but I don't seem to respond as much. But then again, perhaps it has been resulting in my posting less just because this forum seems to be easier to write a line or two on many posts quickly?? --- If you do decide to keep this page of posts, I personally wouldn't mind donating to the site. Does the PayPal feature work on the new site? (If you go back to the new one, that's cool too!)