July 29 2010 Editor Assistance Newsletter
I'm going to be tweaking our forum sidebar a bit. Let me explain a little history of the forum sidebar.
The forum sidebar, on the right side of our forums, currently shows each time a brand new thread is begun. So each time a person starts an entirely new thread, it is highlighted in that sidebar.
In the past we had the forum sidebar update every time a new post was made, even to an existing thread. This showed a more authentic view of how active the forums were, because it updated with each person's new post.
We've been trying to find the right balance in the display, which is tricky. If we only have it show each new thread (as it shows currently) then sometimes great discussions can be missed out, because the discussion was begun months ago. We don't see the fascinating new posts. On the other hand, when it shows every single post it can get overwhelming, because we have a lot of games in our forums. The sidebar fills up solely with the games being played, and it looks like the forums do not have any serious discussion in them to lure in new members.
I've been investigating the internal coding of the forum software itself, and I think I can code in a compromise. This would let us show each new post in the forums, so we can keep track of active discussions better - but have us exclude games from the listing. Games are fun to play but they don't really need to be featured.
Please let me know what you think! We can tweak this as we go, trying to find the right balance of what to feature. I know it's challenging, but the more we polish and shine, the better things get!
Lisa Shea, owner
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