View Full Version : Observations - use of the new forum software

Scott Tichenor
Oct-20-2008, 9:33pm
I've been quietly observing how the new forum software is being utilized. Some observations:

- Appears there is either no interest in the "Rate This Thread" feature or no one has noticed it. I think this is a useful feature and a good way to provide feedback to thread authors and others without the need to actually make a post. When someone starts a thread most of us don't like, or vice versa, easy way to provide anonymous community generated rating/feedback.

- Those of you using the calendar... it's more than just a calendar. You can add images and links, etc.., to it if you wish. Can't think of a reason you wouldn't want to, actually. For those of you that see events you like, you can have it auto-notify you of the events when they are approaching.

- I'm guessing many of you are unaware of all of the features in your User CP (Control Panel), like personal photo albums. The link to visit that is in the upper left-hand corner to the left of the Posting Guidelines/FAQ.

- How many of you have viewed the "Quick Links" menu to see those features?

- Have someone that really annoys you (don't we all)? There's an easy to use ignore list (http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/profile.php?do=ignorelist). Sorry, you can't add the moderators to the list, won't work. :grin:

- One very interesting feature here is than all of the information imported from the old forum got re-evaluated by the new software and is available in various formats. This is a bit mind bending once you realize what's going on. How many of you have ever viewed your own personal list of every attachment you've ever added to this forum and the previous one since inception (http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/profile.php?do=editattachments)?

There's so much more... In closing, how you use the forum is up to each of you. I just think some exploration and curiosity go a long way. Continuing to use this tool like the old forum is fine, but I think you miss out on a lot new features and other added benefits by doing so. I encourage you to explore.

Ted Eschliman
Oct-20-2008, 9:48pm
One key habit I've adapted that's different from the old board, I previously relied heavily on the "New Posts" top menu selection. Rarely would I go to an individual category, because if it was new, I wanted to know about. All categories.

The "New Posts" button here will ignore posts you replied to, but no one else has chimed in. I wanted more a more immediate view of those threads without having to click the front page. The solution: under Quick Links, The "Today's Posts" simply lists EVERYTHING by last response order, and of course, it let's you know where you jumped off last. I find this much more efficient, so now it's the first selection I click when I visit.

Oct-20-2008, 10:46pm
I find myself going to Quick Links and Marking all Messages as Read then going to the Quick Links and using Today's Posts as well Ted. It's just a different way of looking at things. Much easier to stay organized.

Jim Broyles
Oct-21-2008, 1:50pm
So are you going to delete the threads which get negative ratings? By the way, where do we put suggestions?

Oct-21-2008, 2:05pm
No, Scott and Ted only lock/delete threads that violate posting guidelines.

This would be the appropriate section to ask for suggestions for the forum. Ideally, request something that you know exists within the V-bulletin software (not aimed at you Jim). Helpful/useful suggestions are much better tolerated :grin:. If you're not sure if a suggestion warrants a thread PM a moderator.


Jim Broyles
Oct-21-2008, 2:13pm
Okay, my suggestion is to delete threads that you have locked for violating posting guidelines, such as advertising a mandolin for sale, or a hot-button topic. For the life of me, I can't figure out why threads get locked, but the offending post stays posted, often with the content completely deleted and replaced by an announcement that the content was deleted! :)

Jim Broyles
Oct-21-2008, 2:14pm
Oh, and as far as rating the threads, why rate them if it doesn't mean anything? FWIW, I gave the Orville never born thread 1 star.:whistling:

Oct-21-2008, 2:39pm
The thread ratings let users know what others think about them good or bad. Just because there are a lot of replies doesn't always imply a good thread. There may be some users who only want to look at high or low rated threads. Takes all types...

As for leaving some locked threads up I'm reminded of the maxim, "It may be that your only purpose in life is to serve as a warning to others." Besides, you can't search for them, and they fall out of view pretty fast. In many locked threads there is often some information that is worth keeping prior to things getting out of hand.


Jim Broyles
Oct-21-2008, 2:45pm
Okay, I can see that.

Scott Tichenor
Oct-21-2008, 2:59pm
Wow, someone got up on the wrong side of Mr. Beddy-Boo this a.m.:))

Jim Broyles
Oct-21-2008, 3:08pm
No, I wasn't railing, just wondering. Did I seem irritated by the way I asked the question? To be honest, I never look at thread ratings. As Jamie said, it take all types. I often do have the urge to post in one these inane threads how inane I think it is though, so maybe I'll start rating only the severest of the inanity.

Oct-21-2008, 5:25pm
For the life of me, I can't figure out why threads get locked, but the offending post stays posted

That was the case in the mando players with long hair thread. A totally useless thread but, so what. A little light hearted stuff doesn't hurt a thing. After several pages of people having a little fun with it, one guy makes a remark about Jesus and long hair--------improper for sure and the post should have been deleted or maybe the content "starred" out by the mod leaving the user to know it was uncalled for. But to lock the post??????

I don't see any thing wrong with actually having a bit of fun with a mandolin---as long as it's done in moderation.:))

Oct-21-2008, 5:30pm
I meant lock the thread.

Oct-21-2008, 6:40pm
Scott, you and everybody who worked on getting the new forum deserve a big hand. I have no clue what it takes to keep this place running. But, I also don't have a clue about a lot of technology that just seems to work. There is a bunch of stuff I have that has a lot more bells and whistles than I know how to use, and the stuff you described in your first post I had no clue was there.

The star rating I guess means something to some folks, but I always thought the whole idea of this forum is while I don't like something, I also don't have to look at it. So, rating something, for me, seems something that might cause conflict. So, believe it or not, I try to steer away from that. I am on another forum that you can give the poster + or - Karma, and that's kinda satisfying for me personally. I don't see anybody getting - Karma, so it mostly seems a way to pat somebody on that back for doing something special.

Didn't even know there was a calendar, have to check that out I guess... I tend also not to put a lot of personal stuff in the panel. Two reasons, not really sure anybody would care, and, always worry about too much personal info being up where anybody could see. Paranoid, I guess.

I will try to see if I can grok some of the added power of the site, but bottom line for me, is the real reason I continue to come here. The quality of the info, and the diversity of the mandolin fanatics in relative harmony. It always insures a good time every time I check in here. It's a tough job, but my hat's off to you and the crew. I hope the new potential is realized and is used to further mandolin makers, players and mandolin music.