Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]
Support Staff Recommendation
All communities remaining on zIFBoards/InvisionFree should check their conversion opt-in selection in their Admin CP (menu item Tapatalk Conversion)
(Read More)
We hope you enjoy your visit.

You're currently viewing our forum as a guest. This means you are limited to certain areas of the board and there are some features you can't use. If you join our community, you'll be able to access member-only sections, and use many member-only features such as customizing your profile, sending personal messages, and voting in polls. Registration is simple, fast, and completely free.


Join our community!


If you're already a member please log in to your account to access all of our features:

Username:   Password:
Multiquote (on) Multiquote (off)
Add Reply
On the Community
Topic Started: Dec 7 2017, 02:28 PM (679 Views)
l1r72
Member Avatar
Member
[ *  *  * ]
This is more of a post for the Support and Community Staff and for others to give their opinion.

I've been around ZB for a while, and I'm sure many people have been here far longer than I have. Over the years I've had the chance to see it evolve and devolve to what it is now. We're all here because ZB is the best free hosted forum platform and offers features and ease of use that many other system don't. Apart from that ZB has by far the most versatile resources in terms of themes and codes compared to other systems. These resources have been possible thanks to a community of amazing designers and coders.

Saying all of this I would like to propose a few ideas for discussion for everyone:
  • Include a thread based directory for advertising new forums.
    Currently the directory doesn't work which is a shame. Even when it did the algorithm was a little lacking and often displayed forums which weren't active or lacking activity. The requirements for new posts would be clear descriptions answering a few points such as what the community is about, what new members would benefit from, promotional graphics including affiliation images and signatures, and links to important parts of the forum.
  • Bi-weekly or Monthly Design or Development Showcases
    This was something done on ZNR and was quite interesting seeing a showcase of designs and developments that had gone on and were appreciated. It could include a small interview discussing the design process and thinking that went on behind the design, or the benefit of such a code should that be what is being showcased. The idea is to bring light to some of the wonderful work some are still doing for this community (such as DPM and his responsive code), Cory and the many codes he makes for others and the many he patches up because they are outdated.
  • Webmaster (Administration) Discussion
    Many new forums starting out may want to know what are some cool additions they could add in terms of codes and themes, and what could benefit them in terms of how to go about their creating and managing their forum. This could be accompanied by small discussions of weekly topics such as the best way to handle spammers, how to offer your members perks and what codes to include for better onboarding of new members and stimulate discussion. An example for the need of this would be how Mnikolic recently posted about making a resource forum and had some questions.
  • Pinned Help Guides and Tutorials for Beginners
    This idea came to me after seeing Jonathan answer another thread on how to properly set up a domain name. I had problems myself and realised that it doesn't always work the way it is described in the docs. I suggested he make a topic on how to set it up in the cases it doesn't work the way described in the docs so that he doesn't have to do it for each person but could rather refer them to it. A lot of support questions are often the same, and having such pinned topics and tutorials which are updated on a somewhat regular basis (as the support staff have time) would be a great way to ensure that members can find information more easily.

This is just some food for thought. I'd love to see this community grow to be something amazing for all its members and not just a place for people to come and go as they need something, but rather to stick around. What do you guys think about the ideas?
Edited by l1r72, Dec 7 2017, 02:28 PM.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Stephen
Member Avatar
Twilight is upon me, and soon night must fall.

Unfortunately, community growth is often tied to service growth. Over time, the service was either supported well enough that users no longer needed to come here, or they found their support through tickets, Facebook or other social media.

The items you suggest have existed over the course of this board’s life. For various reasons these ideas did not work out and were merged into the sections you currently see.

For instance, we allow advertising and promotions,within reason, in our introduction forum “This is”. The idea there was to provide an individual space for users to connect and share interests without feeling like a billboard. We had previously used a forum for advertisement prior to the board directory. It required a lot of moderation and ultimately did not benefit the board owners as expected. Since there is no “click” rating to sort by, the choices are oldest, newest, latest reply, or alphabetical. That leads to the following problems: oldest- dead boards on the front page, newest: people remake topics, last post- they bump, alpha- they edit the title with symbols to be at the top. So, while the idea was decent, we found there was no strong way to execute it. Hence we use This Is and allow advertising on our Facebook pages as well.


Ultimately, the way sections have grown in the past was spurred on by the amount of discussion topics. If we see that happen again, then we can look at expanding section options again. For now, discussion has been slower and so sections are more condensed.

Online Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
l1r72
Member Avatar
Member
[ *  *  * ]
Stephen
Dec 7 2017, 03:32 PM
Unfortunately, community growth is often tied to service growth. Over time, the service was either supported well enough that users no longer needed to come here, or they found their support through tickets, Facebook or other social media.

The items you suggest have existed over the course of this board’s life. For various reasons these ideas did not work out and were merged into the sections you currently see.

For instance, we allow advertising and promotions,within reason, in our introduction forum “This is”. The idea there was to provide an individual space for users to connect and share interests without feeling like a billboard. We had previously used a forum for advertisement prior to the board directory. It required a lot of moderation and ultimately did not benefit the board owners as expected. Since there is no “click” rating to sort by, the choices are oldest, newest, latest reply, or alphabetical. That leads to the following problems: oldest- dead boards on the front page, newest: people remake topics, last post- they bump, alpha- they edit the title with symbols to be at the top. So, while the idea was decent, we found there was no strong way to execute it. Hence we use This Is and allow advertising on our Facebook pages as well.


Ultimately, the way sections have grown in the past was spurred on by the amount of discussion topics. If we see that happen again, then we can look at expanding section options again. For now, discussion has been slower and so sections are more condensed.

I absolutely understand. It does make it a lot harder using a thread to do it, and of course bumping will always be an issue. I wish there was a way to find new forums here on ZB. There are some huge hidden forums that we don't even know of, and others which are just starting out that would be great to find out about too. Even a topsite wouldn't be effective because people would just spam it.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Jonathan


I think the first point is an issue Brandon would ultimately need to address. As Stephen mentioned, this kind of directory is difficult to moderate and maintain, and needs some level of automation. Refinement to the existing official directory is the main solution here.

The second point has potential, however. I wonder if Helena could adapt her monthly theme nomination topic into something here? Perhaps tie it in with modifications?

The third point, I'm not sure about. I've never really seen this work without it turning into another general support section.

The fourth point is something we can look at - domains have been a nightmare ever since Cloudflare was implemented, and the documentation doesn't help in all cases. A review of how the support section appears to new users might help. The pinned "Welcome to General Support" topic probably needs a revamp too.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
1 user reading this topic (1 Guest and 0 Anonymous)
« Previous Topic · Community Chat · Next Topic »
Add Reply