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Old 09-11-2014, 01:49 PM   #1
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Default Community activity...

Hey there!

I'm sure everyone has realized it, but it seems like CF has had less and less activity as of late! I know of several computer forums (our competitors, you could say) that are absolutely exploding at the moment.

I've seen communities die off after a year (or a few years) of little activity like this.. and I'd hate CF to see that fate! I'd like to start an open discussion on how to get things relevant and interesting again because ignoring the issue certainly won't fix it.

Where shall we start in trying to breath life back into our home here? Let's hear everyone's two cents and hopefully get some movement going!
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Old 09-11-2014, 02:51 PM   #2
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

I see 3 things that if I were a new user would keep me from sticking around once I got the help I needed:

1) Opinions on what's best getting in the way of helping a user, particularly without facts to backup statements. Usually happens on "looking for a computer/piece of hardware what's your opinion threads" but responding with all caps saying BRAND SUCKS! doesn't help and comes off harsh. Also not providing proof of price/performance when they are being told conflicting things is confusing and would make them not sure who to believe. Why come back to places that intimidate and confuse them?

2) Members not reading entire posts before posting OR focusing too hard on a minor side-effect instead of the cause. I'd also include giving "solutions" that in no way help the user (as in, I have a virus so don't tell me to install a new browser). Of the last 100 posts I've made helping new members in the hardware and software sections i'd venture at least half of those posts are telling people to take a step back and look at the entire solution.

Generic example that I've seen a few times:
I just re-installed windows and now my computer cannot connect to the internet. Our members state "install network drivers" multiple times, even after they come back and say they have. And when that doesn't work they'll get "oh well that computer has a crappy network card because that brand sucks, get a new card". No, that should never be acceptable to suggest until all avenues are explored as clearly it worked before the re-install. Odds are, all the OP needed to do was install chipset drivers before the links can be made (seen this many times working in at help desks) but the members here get so focused on the side-effect that they forget to step back and look at what started it.

3) IMO, don't bother posting things like "I don't know, but maybe someone else does" Unless you've been helping them and gotten to a point where you're out of ideas. That should never be your first post in a thread and is just wasting everyone's time (yours for typing it, mine for reading it). I'd include things like "google it." and links to let me google that for you into this category. It comes off as snobish and rude and will drive people away faster than a turd in the pool.

I guess to sum it up what would help us grow, in my opinion, is if our long-standing members would put themselves back in the shoes of a new user and ask yourself "would this be helpful to me if I were the one asking?" and if not, fix it.
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Old 09-11-2014, 05:39 PM   #3
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

^

Very well said. Another thing I can point out is that a decent amount of members don't do is be completely in depth on the subject. Whenever I reply to someone needing help, I will go and do tons of research on the issue, checking if someone else has had that issue as well, etc.

About ways to attract new members. We have been trying to get access to the old Youtube Channel, which I think would be a good start to something major.
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Old 09-11-2014, 08:32 PM   #4
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

This can be a touchy subject as a lot of members join up and ask their question. Get their answer and leave.

Also many members here work hard and sometimes don't have time to spend on the forum. Maybe it's just a phase our community is going through at the moment.

I just have to say that CF will not die. This web site has been around a long time and has helped many many people. It's going to be ok....

LONG LIVE CF
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Old 09-11-2014, 08:56 PM   #5
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

Quote:
Originally Posted by ~mr mixx~ View Post
This can be a touchy subject as a lot of members join up and ask their question. Get their answer and leave.

Also many members here work hard and sometimes don't have time to spend on the forum. Maybe it's just a phase our community is going through at the moment.

I just have to say that CF will not die. This web site has been around a long time and has helped many many people. It's going to be ok....

LONG LIVE CF
I agree with this and Celgorms post. I think you are right maybe it is phase/time of year where we don't get a lot activity. CF has been around since 2002 and celebrates its 12th birthday this year so its survived this long and I am sure it will survive for many more years to come.

What I really think needs to happen is adding something new that will appeal to members.
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:17 AM   #6
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

Quote:
Originally Posted by celegorm View Post
I see 3 things that if I were a new user would keep me from sticking around once I got the help I needed:

1) Opinions on what's best getting in the way of helping a user, particularly without facts to backup statements. Usually happens on "looking for a computer/piece of hardware what's your opinion threads" but responding with all caps saying BRAND SUCKS! doesn't help and comes off harsh. Also not providing proof of price/performance when they are being told conflicting things is confusing and would make them not sure who to believe. Why come back to places that intimidate and confuse them?

2) Members not reading entire posts before posting OR focusing too hard on a minor side-effect instead of the cause. I'd also include giving "solutions" that in no way help the user (as in, I have a virus so don't tell me to install a new browser). Of the last 100 posts I've made helping new members in the hardware and software sections i'd venture at least half of those posts are telling people to take a step back and look at the entire solution.

Generic example that I've seen a few times:
I just re-installed windows and now my computer cannot connect to the internet. Our members state "install network drivers" multiple times, even after they come back and say they have. And when that doesn't work they'll get "oh well that computer has a crappy network card because that brand sucks, get a new card". No, that should never be acceptable to suggest until all avenues are explored as clearly it worked before the re-install. Odds are, all the OP needed to do was install chipset drivers before the links can be made (seen this many times working in at help desks) but the members here get so focused on the side-effect that they forget to step back and look at what started it.

3) IMO, don't bother posting things like "I don't know, but maybe someone else does" Unless you've been helping them and gotten to a point where you're out of ideas. That should never be your first post in a thread and is just wasting everyone's time (yours for typing it, mine for reading it). I'd include things like "google it." and links to let me google that for you into this category. It comes off as snobish and rude and will drive people away faster than a turd in the pool.

I guess to sum it up what would help us grow, in my opinion, is if our long-standing members would put themselves back in the shoes of a new user and ask yourself "would this be helpful to me if I were the one asking?" and if not, fix it.
If the person asking the question would supply as much info as they can, like specs on the computer, what they were doing at the time the problem cropped up, and what they have already done to fix the problem, it would help tremendously. Most of new members come in in a blind panic looking for a way to fix the problem. Those of us with advanced trouble shooting skills can, most of the time anyway, read between the lines and get a good handle on the problem. If you can get a panic stricken person to settle down and try a few things you get close to or arrive at a solution.

If you're going to recommend replacing a part because you're sure it's gone bad, recommend something you have first hand experience with. Just reading the specs of a device online isn't, in my book anyway, the route to go.
ie: I use TP-Link hard wire and wireless products for a 3 fold reason. It's inexpensive. It's simple to get up and running. It's long term reliable. I have been using this brand name products for several years and highly recommend them.
Something like that instills confidence in a product you recommend to a member looking for a solution. Posting a knee jerk reaction you have or a lack of knowledge on the question type of response is of no help.

Bashing a product, just because you personally don't like it, is crap and it's against forum policy as I recall. Ease up on that garbage. Makes us look bad.

So in simple terms, if you don't have an answer or you feel the urge to just show out, staying out of a thread would be your best course of action.

Tis better to keep one's mouth shut and be thought a fool, than it is to open your mouth and remove all doubt.
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:32 AM   #7
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

Quote:
Originally Posted by BK_123 View Post
I agree with this and Celgorms post. I think you are right maybe it is phase/time of year where we don't get a lot activity. CF has been around since 2002 and celebrates its 12th birthday this year so its survived this long and I am sure it will survive for many more years to come.

What I really think needs to happen is adding something new that will appeal to members.
I agree with Celegorm's points as well as Setishock's points in his last post as well. However, I do not agree that we should treat the low activity as a "phase", because I see other communities thriving in new and original content at the same time as us. These communities are also forums where people ask for help, but they seem to have a healthier balance of activity and one post members.

CF used to have a lot more community involvement IMHO. I recall seeing guides (some of which were my own), more build topics, more hardware debates, and overall more fun between the community. If we simply accept that CF "will not die" as a solution, I feel we've already lost. Perhaps the site will remain up but the members will not.

I've seen other communities put together regulated training (lasting over a year) and what not for virus removal training, and those members are trained and give back to the community. As such, you have people invested into the community and providing expertise when someone asks for help related to virus removal. It may not be a good fit for CF, but it's merely an example of how creativity can bring a lot to a community.

I for one don't have a solution, unfortunately. Truly, I wish I did. Though I can not offer a solution, I would like to point out the problem and I'm willing to provide a plausible argument as to why it is a problem. Furthermore, though I can not provide the solution by myself, I'd love to be part of the long-term solution.
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Old 09-16-2014, 05:51 AM   #8
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

Have respect for others peoples opinions no matter what you think, here is one example:
Some ones comes on forum asking for opinion on internet security suit to use on his/hers PC, I recommend Nortons then some one else will come on then bag Nortons as bloatware & recommends another, mind you Nortons works ok for me.
So what was the point for me to answer a question to be told my answer was useless.
This usually discourages me to answer in future & I wonder what the OP thinks of all this.

This behaviour usually kills forums, I rarely come here now because of it.

We are really here to help each other if possible not to argue all the time.

Cheers.
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Old 09-16-2014, 05:57 AM   #9
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

Quote:
Originally Posted by setishock View Post
Bashing a product, just because you personally don't like it, is crap and it's against forum policy as I recall. Ease up on that garbage. Makes us look bad.

So in simple terms, if you don't have an answer or you feel the urge to just show out, staying out of a thread would be your best course of action.

Tis better to keep one's mouth shut and be thought a fool, than it is to open your mouth and remove all doubt.
Wish you practice this your self as you have done this a couple times to me, refer to my other post above this one.
Hope you understand.
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Old 09-18-2014, 04:09 AM   #10
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Default Re: Community activity at an all-time low

Forums are for discussion. Forums are not places for you state your opinion and expect everyone else to either agree or stay out of a thread. I have noticed some thin skinned people here. What some people find works real well for them others think is terrible. If I ask what cpu to buy I want 500 people telling me what sucks about one what is good about another then I can do research on all the points made and make my own decision. Personally I do a lot of lurking but very little posting due to the fact that im ALL linux and that community is very small here.
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