Are forums dying?

Discussion in 'Managing an Online Community' started by CarpCharacin, Nov 2, 2016.

  1. No

    97 vote(s)
    45.8%
  2. Yes

    115 vote(s)
    54.2%
  1. vikvaliant

    vikvaliant Aspirant

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    I agree. People now have many more options to communicate but forums still have purpose.

    Some platforms are better at certain forms of communication than others. For example; having a discussion vs commenting vs one-liners; and whether they are directed at the public, other users, or the author of a article. Also, how easy does the platform make it to continue a previous discussion, maintain a level of anonymity; and whether there is a community where you can easily find people you have previously communicated with.

    In some of those combinations forums have an advantage. Forums are also better at linking in various media (links, photo, video, emoticons) in a readable and organized fashion-- giving users the most freedom to express themselves.

    Years ago I believe forums covered most everything I listed above. But new platforms have come along that do SOME of those things better.
     
  2. bogie

    bogie Participant

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    I think also google needs to take some of the blame, simple forums seem to find it hard to rank. Lets face it if your not on the first page then most people wont see you, this is where the likes of Xenforo and woltlab have a chance to hit back. Now its getting much easier to run a blog/forum hybrid that ranks well.

    Just my opinion
     
  3. jilly

    jilly Fan

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    there needs to be an easy to use app on their phone, that seamlessly lets them log in and post, and that will help.
     
  4. Danny10

    Danny10 Neophyte

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    This is a subject that has always interested me because after so many years I still have not found a solution. I have a forum since 2005 and after the first 4/5 years of success has started a slow decline. Since 2008 almost all the forums are in decline. The problems are two: Facebook and smartphones. Compared to 10 years ago, now all the guys aged 16 have a smartphone and looking on the internet only easy and immediate interactivity. Them are in Facebook. The situation is complicated because then Facebook groups together users of all kinds while the forums often deal with specific topics. To improve must offer users something that Facebook does not offer, you need to stay involved in some way. Or hope that Facebook close but it's impossible :D I also believe that 10 years ago the average age was higher and this improved the discussions on the forum.
    This is my opinion Guys :)
     
  5. La2k16

    La2k16 Participant

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    I don't think forums can ever die. They are an integral part of the internet, one of it's foundations. They change over time. If you think about it Facebook and Twitter are just an evolved form of a message board. You can be all doom and gloom over them or use them to your advantage, and there are ways. You change with the times or get left behind.
     
  6. CureNa11

    CureNa11 Aspirant

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    I find this false. I use about 6+ forums daily and use them more than social media.
     
  7. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Opinionated asshat

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    Really? And are their post counts (daily) at the same level (or higher) that they were 12 months ago (if these are a long time existing forum). Are their daily visits/joins as high as it was 12 months ago?
    For most (there ARE a few exceptions) the counts are dropping. And you are just 1 small portion of the overall internet. ;)
     
  8. pierce

    pierce Habitué

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    I always think of this as an information requirement.

    So many people are willing to accept anything at face value.

    This it takes effort to find information.

    Free information is an ironic paradox for general understanding. Free info isn't valuable that's why it's free right?

    Well maybe the effort to maintain a touch on a forum is the cost to this so called free information.

    I hope their is a resurgence in forums but it will only happen if the users of the internet start to question and fact check what they read.

    I find myself looking for real information on topics I have an interest in. It's not Facebook but it might lead to Facebook sometimes. It's blogs, community forums and YouTube.

    My ideas are still forming, it's fascinating don't you think?
     
  9. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Opinionated asshat

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    What I've found funny is that many times on FaceBook the "info" refers back to a .. wait for it.... actual forum/blog/page somewhere else that is not FaceBook related. :whistle:
     
  10. pierce

    pierce Habitué

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    I either don't have the right friend group or interests as you.

    I usually get junk clicky bait stuff that leads to a blog that leads to YouTube.

    Anybody have a coined name for those middle men blogs?
     
  11. CureNa11

    CureNa11 Aspirant

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  12. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Opinionated asshat

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    The simple fact is I use the internet as a resource - many of the younger crowd (and a lot of the older) use it as a chit-chat social place, which FaceBook/Twitter fits the bill. They have no idea what else exists out on the internet.
     
  13. Solidus

    Solidus Stupid machines!

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    Only some genres suffer, general discussion will never succeed now. Others which offer no benefit using a forum vs social media will die out too.
    A forum can't just be a place of discussion with these platforms around making discussion easier and quicker. Offer on your forum what social media cannot, such as tournaments and full reviews. Even better if your topic stays relevant despite being years old (unlike mine, wrestling). You won't find WWE tournaments and competitions on twitter though, so advantage me.
     
  14. TrixieTang

    TrixieTang Politically Incorrect

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    Plot Twist: Forums are already dead and this is Forum Hell.
     
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  15. CureNa11

    CureNa11 Aspirant

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    Ok, but do you have statistics? I'd like you to conduct a survey to prove that your last sentence is true. Which very likely ins't. Honestly, you can't just assume something about a whole generation of people. Also, I do not even use twitter ad facebook lol.
     
  16. pierce

    pierce Habitué

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    I would concur with Tracy Perry

    But I've been laughed at many times for saying it.

    The big 5, fb, Twitter, insta, Snapchat, WhatsApp, and Pinterest. (Ok 6).
     
  17. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Opinionated asshat

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    I'm basing upon my contact with numerous friends (yes, I'm 53, but I have friends that range from 18-79) in a wide range of work fields (from retired to providing tech support at a call center) and providing technical help to them. They primarily use FaceBook/Twitter/Email. Other aspects are a loss to most of them. The younger generation wants something "quick, like an app provides" and can't be troubled apparently with using browsers.
     
  18. zappaDPJ

    zappaDPJ Administrator

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    I agree but I think the reason is largely technology and I think they are generally right not to be troubled. The young are usually quick to embrace new technology. The generation of people who used computers to access forums for discussion purposes have had their day. Smart phones and app driven social platforms are where you'll find the majority of social interaction these days. Forums failed to adapt, they are no longer considered viable discussion platforms by the majority of young people but you already know that :)

    That's not to say there isn't a place for forums but these days I see them more like libraries* rather than general discussion platforms.

    *A building or room containing collections of books, periodicals, and sometimes films and recorded music for use or borrowing by the public or the members of an institution.
     
  19. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Opinionated asshat

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    I haven't really found a competent FaceBook page that is actually technical in nature (which is mainly what i look for) - so for me FB and Pages/Groups/Whatever are a major fail until they can perform the actions that a dedicated site can.
    And I agree, for GENERAL discussion, the social sites are where it's at and sound a death knell for sites that are general and not niche/specific in their field.
    The problem I frequently observe is that people want the stuff done for them now instead of taking the initiative and figuring out how to do it themselves. It's like their "time is more valuable" than learning new skills.
     
  20. eva2000

    eva2000 Habitué

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    Yes i see that quite a bit. I'll usually exhaust all avenues of self-help/learning/research before I even ask a question or ask for help. That's just me being me :)
     
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