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Future of BGC [Temporary Discussion]
#31
(08-23-2019, 03:31 PM)ShineCero Wrote: There is a choice to create for creating new threads by splitting them. However, this is a lot of work. I agreed with everything Z presented so far by cutting down things to make it more generalized, friendly for users to browse without having so many things narrowed to the specific details. I tried this before, but it was too much work (even with multiple people). I also agreed with Loopy that we should have a prefix that tag graphics, videos and artwork in a single section. Although, videos, I’m still on the fence on the need for it. If the video talks about a specific anime, it should be in the anime section. If the video is about speed drawing your artwork… then it should be in your art thread. YouTube poops can be placed in a “YouTube poops” thread for that kind of thing, me thinks. 

But here’s a more pressing issue.

So, I vouch for something more detail that might be unpopular. We have too many dead threads and if we’re going to revamp, we need to start thinking critically about them. Either we dump them and reorganized everything in the Storage Room. However, that is an extremely hard work to do.

Or.

We take the easy route and flat out remove all of them and start fresh. Of course, this means that post count will be affected by large—but generally, it will only have a major impact to the first three top poster on the forum since it contributes over half of the total post count on the forum. Users that are rarely active or never come on since the beginning anyways will noticed the differences.

This is going to be a tough call but personally, I would just delete the posts outright. Reason being that members who have not been on for 4+ years will probably never notice or never get back on and members like me, Loopy, and Shine can easily get back the posts lost. I would prefer posts that have weight to them rather than none. That's just my view on it. Personally, I don't care if my post count goes down because I can easily get those posts back no problem.


@Vegetto

I think I understand what you mean. Basically, use Discord to 'talk and recruit' people, I assume? 

Most forums do have a Discord/Social Media, however, they do not use it very often. It's really only there to alert a huge mass of people about updates and whatnot. I am personally on a Discord that follows a YouTuber and it has hundreds of members, yet, they barely post or say anything on Discord. It's usually bots that post stuff. Hell, just on our RV chat alone, we get more messages than probably all the channels on that one Discord thingy I'm in. And we have. 

It's not that we're shutting down Discord usage, it's simply those who never get on BGL OR Discord, to begin with. I don't see the point of having them there when they say nothing, do nothing, contribute nothing, and don't get on. But hey, that's just me. So far, they never asked us why they left, if they even noticed. And even if they are kicked out of Discord, they are not kicked out of BGL unless they broke the rules somehow. 

As of now, I personally want to avoid Discord. Not that it's bad or anything, (I love it, frankly) but I fear that it will be the 'easy way out' for some members. It's easy to talk and PM on Discord, but it's hard to actually have a group convo in something as chaotic as Discord. Imagine this thread but on Discord. It wouldn't work because we would have hundreds of posts in real-time. There would be no time to think because 'we gotta post now', and after a few minutes/hours, the posts will be gone as soon as they arrive. What if there was a really good idea someone said? Whelp, gotta scroll up the hundreds/thousands of posts to find it and reply. What if we find people interested? Gotta make a new channel for just those interested in Discord so we can actually talk about this. Why do all that extra work when you can just make a thread and post the link. 

Perhaps I missed the point entirely, but if you just mean 'PM with members on Discord' then that's totally fine. If you mean 'why make threads on BGL when I can chat with my buddies on Discord', then that's not okay because of reasons above. Sometimes the mix doesn't work as well as it sounds.


We need to ask ourselves a question as I mentioned before: What is Boogaloo's theme? What is Boogaloo's identity?

I've spoken to people in real life to try and get more people to join the forum and they always ask me the same question: "What's it about?"
My response: Uhh... Well, we're a mix of everything.

If we can pinpoint what our current active 12 members like/want, then we can bring in similar like-minded people. Personally, I am telling people that we are an Art/Roleplay forum. When I narrow it down, I finally get people who are interested! I just wish I can give out little cards with the name of the website because sometimes I don't have time to write things out.

Another thing is the excuse of not inviting friends over because 'they're weird'/'you won't like my friend'/'he's got a foot fetish'/etc... Honestly, who cares? As long as they are not pedos, racists, murderers, or rapists, who cares? We are not going to think any less of you if you bring a weird member. Hey, if they like art, Roleplaying, but has a foot fetish, bring them over! We're all weird in our own way.

I just had to get that out, I've seen it so many times that it honestly bothers me every time I hear it.
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#32
(08-24-2019, 05:33 PM)~ Z ~ Wrote: I think I understand what you mean. Basically, use Discord to 'talk and recruit' people, I assume? 

Most forums do have a Discord/Social Media, however, they do not use it very often. It's really only there to alert a huge mass of people about updates and whatnot. I am personally on a Discord that follows a YouTuber and it has hundreds of members, yet, they barely post or say anything on Discord. It's usually bots that post stuff. Hell, just on our RV chat alone, we get more messages than probably all the channels on that one Discord thingy I'm in. And we have. 

It's not that we're shutting down Discord usage, it's simply those who never get on BGL OR Discord, to begin with. I don't see the point of having them there when they say nothing, do nothing, contribute nothing, and don't get on. But hey, that's just me. So far, they never asked us why they left, if they even noticed. And even if they are kicked out of Discord, they are not kicked out of BGL unless they broke the rules somehow. 

As of now, I personally want to avoid Discord. Not that it's bad or anything, (I love it, frankly) but I fear that it will be the 'easy way out' for some members. It's easy to talk and PM on Discord, but it's hard to actually have a group convo in something as chaotic as Discord. Imagine this thread but on Discord. It wouldn't work because we would have hundreds of posts in real-time. There would be no time to think because 'we gotta post now', and after a few minutes/hours, the posts will be gone as soon as they arrive. What if there was a really good idea someone said? Whelp, gotta scroll up the hundreds/thousands of posts to find it and reply. What if we find people interested? Gotta make a new channel for just those interested in Discord so we can actually talk about this. Why do all that extra work when you can just make a thread and post the link. 

Perhaps I missed the point entirely, but if you just mean 'PM with members on Discord' then that's totally fine. If you mean 'why make threads on BGL when I can chat with my buddies on Discord', then that's not okay because of reasons above. Sometimes the mix doesn't work as well as it sounds.

I addressed this in my initial post, regarding how the uniform structure of the forum is better for things such as RP in general and art threads presentation wise. The point is more in presenting that Discord is a platform with benefits and drawbacks just as much as the forum itself, where I think a good focus is figuring out the right combination of the two. Because as you said: you personally want to avoid Discord because so far, the negatives have only reared their head because we haven't figured out how to use it.

So again, benefits to it can be found in how our conversations for the RPs would serve as a good ease of transition for members. Someone would probably feel more compelled to ask questions/reach out to us in Discord channels when seeing those conversations for BV, RV, and FE than by browsing the forum and contacting someone after reading the RP.

Discord's benefits are similar to Reddit's easy mechanisms, where these platforms seem to have taken off mostly because of how simplified and quick the conversations can be. With that being said, it does lack uniform that a forum has (IE, I'd never want to RP in text on Reddit or Discord because that platform just feels off/not controlled very well).

So those "fears" you have in how members see it as an easy way out is actually the problem I think needs to be tackled: there is nothing wrong with Discord and it is a very useful tool. We just need to figure out how to use it more effectively than simply trying to play this damage control ideology towards it because platforms like Discord and Reddit resonate well with a massive following on the internet. Yet since we haven't figured out how to capitalize on it, we're seeing it perform the opposite on the forum.

It's better for us to turn a great tool that so far has hindered development, into a useful piece that could spike the growth even more dramatically. I was simply trying to bring that up in hopes that someone might have ideas on that front, because I currently haven't figured anything out.
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#33
This is what I call an enjoyable conversation; something we need to apply to the rest of the forum, barring RPs.  Too Cool

Quote:We need to ask ourselves a question as I mentioned before: What is Boogaloo's theme? What is Boogaloo's identity?

There were couple of users who often talk how the forum was a bit confusing in terms of identity. thonk

==========

@Vegetto

I agreed that other platforms have a less uniform feel to it. Archive is a pain in the ass; the messaging system is okay on the surface, but the chain comments gets old too quickly—especially for roleplaying stuff. I don’t know how others can into Discord/Reddit RPs because it’s always, always chaotic in my eyes. I made an account, try it out for a few months and I just ended up deleting it… just wasn’t my taste at all. I’m sure people are used to that kind of thing though.

I can agree that we can use Discord as an effective tool to enhance the forum and/or encourage some personal conversation about a RP, because at the end of the day, it’s a tool. If it’s strictly for the RPs, I have don’t have much issue on that regard. However, we should keep in mind of users who don’t use Discord—perhaps a discussion thread can also act as a way to bring in members who aren’t on social media and/or avoid the chaotic nature that often happens there (hence Z’s creation of that RV thread… at least, that’s what I think the intended purposes is for).

As you said, we’re currently at a stall on how we can use it effectively since right now, we’re just seeing the negative effects. So, the question remains:

How can we present this to the members? The old typical “if you’re interested, click this link to discord”. Do we regulated who joins if they’re interested in the RP? Does it extend to other sections? If we can figure this out, it can be a powerful tool. I don’t expect an answer, since I’m just making an rhetorical questions, but it’s something to keep in mind. If you catch my drift.
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#34
Forum is now re-open, with a new layout of forum. It took longer than usual, mainly because there were so many dead threads (and forums have 5-6 threads), that it was hard to sort them through. I took active threads from each sections and placed them in the vault before moving them to their appropriate place.

First thing is that, we need to find differences between Life Threads, Plaza Threads and Park threads. Which threads in the vault would fall in these categories. 

Life = On-Topic Discussion
Plaza = Causal, off-topic discussion
Park = Fun threads such as Count to Infinity.
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#35
(08-23-2019, 10:52 PM)Vegetto Wrote: Now, I don't have any statistics, but I still think that another strategy that needs to be addressed going forward is potentially utilizing Discord for perhaps establishing more personable connections with people that we try to recruit. IE, most of the chats are all real time, casual conversation that makes the medium so widely effective: Discord is basically just a better medium for creating more personable interactions while the forum is a little more uniform in activity. That uniform works wonderful for platforms such as RP in giving it quality structure, giving people threads to showcase their artwork in a manner that is better in presentation, etc.

Maybe as people recruit, perhaps we can possibly take a look at adding another method of strategy in using the Discord as a way for us to connect better on a more personal level with new membership, then utilizing that platform to help others get actively involved with the forum. IE, after having small conversations with the GF while she was browsing the site one day, it seemed she was lost if I just threw her a website link where I was guiding her to look at specific things through conversation in Discord.

It made me realize that while we've had success in limiting Discord usage to avoid detracting forum activity, perhaps we might have better luck improving activity on the forum if we start figuring out how to utilize these modern mediums of activity a little better to drive traffic to the forum. IE, no one new is gonna consider possibly getting involved with the fantastic mess that is RV without any context but perhaps if they see the Discord chat and ask questions in that channel dedicated to it, they might see our conversations and have a better way to simply start getting involved.

How we can do that without making people rely on Discord entirely, I'm not entirely sure. But I believe if we can figure out that mixture, we might have better success in overall activity/membership from people that will actually stay.

I'd be very willing to give it a go in utilizing Discord better for helping new users get used to the site AND get to know us on a more personable level. I don't think you're saying to hold all discussions on there as opposed to the forum since that's definitely counterproductive, so I'll try and present a different perspective; from a newbie's pov, they see a forum that might be well organized, but is a little community that they may feel like they're just an outsider looking in. For all they know, they have no idea how often we use the discord for small talk and posting memes about RPs and the like. So they may not feel very inclined to hang out very long if at all because as it stands, BGL itself cannot offer a feature anymore that would lend itself exceptionally well to help ease new users into our crowd: which was visitor messages. That was a plug-in that lent itself well to building interpersonal cohesion while the site was budding, and without an up to date plug-in available because MyBB updates break plug ins all the time, we were left without any fallback. Not to mention receiving a PM from an admin may be a little too stiff a first impression. Even though we are friendly faces, admins tend to be a little more behind the scenes than usual on sites with comparatively busier traffic. But if we treat discord as merely a more streamlined version of VMs, we can use that to our advantage.

Discord won't be used to replace actual thread discussion but I think you meant it's far easier and more casual to do idle chat with site members on Discord compared to a thread just for chatting; you get two different atmospheres and discord's is just more casual and faster in that regard (ironically I gripe about how shit is too fast on the internet, but I sure as heck can't stand waiting too long on a reply over small talk). It's just a superior tool for chatting about small things on a personable level akin to a group chat you make for you and people in your class. But you don't hold lengthy debates and philosophical discussions with your classmates in group chats because of both character limit and nobody will really be very interested in scrolling all that. You do that in your class' discussion module for your weekly assignment, you dig?


But on a RPer stance, it's easier to get someone curious about RV or TFE on the server compared to the forum because most will not feel particularly inclined to click these without prompted most of the time. Whether they want to join after we provide context for it is up to them of course, but I do think it sparks curiosity greater than just having the forum as a point of isolated reference within the vacuum. This example is mostly on the assumption the RPer saw an ad for the site on reddit I wrote for Boogaverse and they see that we host other games too. But they need context for those unlike BV.

We probably shouldn't just automatically PM every person that arrives into joining the server automatically if they have Discord. Maybe we can do it after briefly mingling with them in their introduction thread and get them to open up at their own pace. Then we see them post in some forums of their interest (provided we link them so they can get to threads fast enough) and shoot them a message after seeing some activity from them, asking if they use Discord and if they would be interested in using it as a chatroom type of thing. And like everyone else, they maintain a minimum post quota in order to remain part of the server.

And like every other site's server, we may ought to have a rules tab that reminds them that the discord server is just a place for small-scale socialising and not a replacement for the forum. This might require us to be a little stricter with what we allow to be discussed: if someone wants to post a link to an article about some current event that is very controversial, we ought to gently request that they take it to the Current Events thread. Then the chat will find something less thread-worthy to talk about. If it's a topic that invites mainly one liners or is too casual to be even threadworthy we allow it.
Definitely no art channels; but works in progress are fine since we usually present them with some context to sharing it rather than posting it on an Art thread. It sounds kind of strict but in practice this is pretty standard among discord servers. The ones that have bots spamming it unchecked probably just have crappy mods or they have a public link available (or both), so that isn't really a worry for us at the moment since the link is on an invite-only basis for the moment.

Course I'm posting this at 1 am with 5 hours of sleep so pardon the disorganized trains of thought. I hope this might clarify some things.
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#36
Alright.

After an exhausting 3 days of works (RPG section still needs cleaning, but that can be done later), the forum has been overhauled and compacted. 15 different sections was deleted from the forum altogether due to too much dead threads or not enough threads to begin with (Tech Club rarely saw any activity and Foreign Language is literally a dead section).

Central and District merged together as “Entertainment Area” to include everything else, including anime (to give members a sense of which place to go). Life is where all serious discussions will take place, while Plaza is friendlier in terms of posting. Of course, I must purge threads that have little to zero posts, but you can easily remake them for the future.

Right now, we’re at a stage about using certain prefixes. In the Artwork Section, I was thinking that we can include Artwork Prefix and Video Prefix (I left the graphic section alone as in).

In the anime café section for deeper discussion about specific anime I was thinking of an “Anime” Prefix and “Manga” Prefix. So, people won’t have to worry about spoilers.

In Member’s RPG, I made two prefixes “Original” and “Inspired”. I couldn’t think of another name for it, so if you have an idea, please feel free to tell me. I was thinking of add RPG Athenaeum as a sub section (since it’s more fitted to Member’s RPG) while leaving Museum as its standalone section for all closed rpgs.

We went from 51,300 posts to 48,327. I honestly thought we lose even more posts during the clean-up, but it didn’t even put a dent. That’s easily can be done within a year to get back our original numbers. So, with that said and done, going forward, this will be our new layout of the forum—we won’t be creating any new subsections. They will fall into their appropriate place in the available sections we have now.

------

The lost of the plugins hurts it. The fact that the plugin is no other sustainable due the author no longer updating it really, really brings out my disappointment; I often think I should take a crack at making plugins so I don’t have to concern myself with constant breaks whenever a new updates appears.

Yeah, this is one of my concern as well. The content in the RV/BGV thread isn’t that friendly to newcomers, since all it does is contain memes and whatnot. Trust me, I agreed that discord can be use for personal communication (which is basically chatting in case people are confused). I’m referring to a more in-depth conversation that doesn’t need to be there, so it won’t clog up the server and people who aren’t interested won’t have see it on there. 

Quote:We probably shouldn't just automatically PM every person that arrives into joining the server automatically if they have Discord. Maybe we can do it after briefly mingling with them in their introduction thread and get them to open up at their own pace. Then we see them post in some forums of their interest (provided we link them so they can get to threads fast enough) and shoot them a message after seeing some activity from them, asking if they use Discord and if they would be interested in using it as a chatroom type of thing. And like everyone else, they maintain a minimum post quota in order to remain part of the server.

And like every other site's server, we may ought to have a rules tab that reminds them that the discord server is just a place for small-scale socialising and not a replacement for the forum. This might require us to be a little stricter with what we allow to be discussed: if someone wants to post a link to an article about some current event that is very controversial, we ought to gently request that they take it to the Current Events thread. Then the chat will find something less thread-worthy to talk about. If it's a topic that invites mainly one liners or is too casual to be even threadworthy we allow it.

I agreed with this. I have no issues if we go for this route. I think a stricter rule on the quota might be needed as well.
You can scratch off the visitor messages issues, @LoopyPanda; a kind soul (bless their heart) managed to fix the issues with the profile comments. I still need to do some bug testing, so I most likely have to bug people to use it over and over until I see anything wrong with it.

With that said, the entire forum is now compacted, clean out and organized in a way it should've been. It was a long time coming, and with 76 members, with only 15 members coming on (with 7 having consistency of coming on), we won't be missing posts. Especially in sections that are in dead section.

We still need to find a way to add more members and more players. Discord is one thing, but we should also established communication using the forum as well.
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#37
(08-30-2019, 03:36 AM)ShineCero Wrote: With that said, the entire forum is now compacted, clean out and organized in a way it should've been. It was a long time coming, and with 76 members, with only 15 members coming on (with 7 having consistency of coming on), we won't be missing posts. Especially in sections that are in dead section.


Getting rid of old threads does keep things clean and makes it a bit easier to look for more interesting discussions. And active RPs are nicer to look at than still born ones.
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#38
That’s precisely the point. We were a bit ambitions in the beginning about creating so many forums and so many threads, but the demand doesn’t cut it here, stretches out discussion even further, and overall, lost a sense of stability and balance in content. This way, we have a good look of what gets posts and what doesn’t—and makes it easier for people to search for active discussion threads.

There will be complaints that we should add a forum here and there for a specific discussion, but this is a perfect balance we ever had throughout the duration of the forum’s life. We most likely (and I can say with confidence, it will never happen) won’t be creating any new forums in the future. This is what we have, and we must utilize these forums to the best of their abilities.

Now, trimming down fat is just one part of the solution. We still need active discussions and participation from actual users. Role-playing forum is pretty much covered, and the Art Garden is more or less “semi-active”. Plaza is golden since it generates the most posts, but other section still needs some love.

Z and I did a test on posting in Pokémon Sword and Shield a while back. We putted 8 posts together instantly back-to-back without fail by speculating, adding thoughts about the current Pokémon reveals and discuss further things. This is a type of discussion that can be had—instead of blowing it off.

We also need to bring in more members, considering the discord option is still up in the air.
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