Ventana Wilderness Forums • This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.
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Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 11:56 pm
by Chris
I'm just checking that I'm remembering how to do this :)

I'm sure that even with someone like me, it will just be a matter of use and familiarity...

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 8:30 am
by thurston
I understand the need to eliminate spam posts. But the confirmation code is so annoying. Plus, having a slow internet connection effectively makes it just not worth the trouble for me to participate.

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:38 pm
by fedak
If you bookmark the "Active Topics" link, you get much the same experience as with the old forum.
(Minus the tree view, but with the added benefit that older threads will get bumped if they are still active)

The new board is a vast improvement over the old system, it just takes a bit to get used to.

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:04 pm
by bigsurkate
I actually like the new format. Perhaps it is because I am new to the forum and have never gotten "used to the old format." I find it easier to use and follow than the prior forum. Maybe that will change when the number of new topics grows exponentially, but at the moment, I find it easy to use, to follow topics, and to post. One does not need to "sign-in" to post a reply, or to post a new topic. One only needs to be signed-in to see the profiles (emails) of others.

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 4:51 pm
by riatch
I too have struggled with the new Forum format ... but just reading the previous posts have helped me to understand how to best utilize this tool. We'll get there.

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2008 8:44 am
by dknapp1
Carl, there is a search box in the upper right hand corner that allows you to search quickly for people or keywords in posts. Give it a try and see if that makes things any easier.

Also, when you login, there is a "automatically log me in" box that you can check which should log you in automagically. It make take a second or two to get you redirected to your post though. Try it and see.

Also, now you can subscribe to posts. At the bottom left when you post, is a check box "Notifiy me when a reply is posted". When you check it, you will receive an email whenever someone replies. This means that you don't have to constantly check in to see if anyone has responded. It also gives you a direct link to the forum and possibly the post - I forget which. In fact, you can edit your post right now, and check the "notify me when a reply is posted" and you'll get notified whenever anyone responds.

There is an "active topics" link that will show active topics, though since it's a new forum, I think everything shows up as active.

dbk

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 9:57 pm
by Boon
Carl et al...

I fully understand your hesitance in embracing this new forum format. It's difficult for me too, being a died-in-the-wool retro-grouch and deeply comfortable with the old version for the past 12 years. But the change really needed to be made for at least one reason, and that reason is the insane proliferation of automated forum spam that's been picking up in the past couple of years. Most readers of the forum don't see it, but a LOT of volunteer time went in to just keeping an eye on the forum and purging and banning the spam, which really became a problem. At times we would get hit with junk over 1,000 times a day. That's the main reason for switching to a forum that requires registration - the "spambots" can't get in to post their garbage ad nausem, rendering the forum worthless. As far as searchability etc, please just give it some time and play around with the various available features - I think you'll eventually find that it works pretty well once you get familiar with it. And of course the forum admin folks are some smart and open-minded dudes, so don't hesitate to feed 'em your specific suggestions on how to make it better. I think we all want this forum to work well and continue to be the place people go when they have a question about the Ventana backcountry, so let's all pitch in.

Boon

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 6:42 pm
by Betsy M
I do think the new format will take some getting used to. One problem with the old format, though, was people constantly starting new threads instead of adding their comment to an existing topic. Seems to me that Carl's post could have been added to the general comment on the new forum, and doing so would minimize the need to skip around to new topics.

Re: This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 12:43 pm
by Sharon
Yes, I agree. I probably wouldn't have gotten hooked into reading the site if it had been in this format. My feeling is that this site is more for computer gurus now. It's not as easy to use as the old one.

I am a descendant of John and Laura Partington (great -great granddaughter) and am considering joining this organization (I'm in Portland, Oregon now).

This new forum is awkward and will inhibit participation.

Posted: Sat Aug 30, 2008 10:35 pm
by Carl Mounteer
It looks like a great deal of effort was put into designing this new forum. But I much prefer the older one for several reasons:

1. You have to sign in. Why?

2. On the old forum it was much easier to see at a glance what topics were posted and who was posting and responding. Now you have to click on one of three general areas, then to see who is responding to the posts (because some contributors are consistently more interesting and informative than others) you have to click on each individual post. This is awkward and time consuming.

3. Searching for a topic or name is awkward for the same reason. On the old forum board you could search the entire year by topic and name. Now you have to go through the cumbersome process described above.

3. The "Subject" line only allows 64 characters. I believe this is much shorter than the old Forum.

The only advantage I can see is the ability to edit or delete your posts instead of having to contact the forum administrator to do this. But the deficiencies described above far outweigh these two advantages that I have discovered. And I am certain these defects will inhibit participation and interest in this forum. That is unfortunate because this was previously, in my experience, the best and most easy to use discussion platforms I have utilized on the Internet.