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Thread: Forum Structure

  1. #1
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    Forum Structure

    The forums that appear at the top of the CosmoQuest home page give an impression of what the site is about. The most visited and commented parts of the site, providing its reason for existence, are well down the list. I just did the attached numerical analysis of the CQ Forum Home Page, in order to raise the question of whether a revision of the order of forums is worth thinking about.
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  2. #2
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    No comment on order, but "Google Hangouts" might need a future name or description change. The API is going or has gone away and Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat are new apps for the same purpose. The first is video, the second is chat.
    Solfe

  3. #3
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    It appears that some of the subdivisions here have become redundant since the merger and subsequent evolution of the forum. Google Hangouts is a case in point. I responded to the most recent post just as I would have in Q&A, and the OP has not been back and it is three months now. The heading says "Talk with the team, face to face, and ask the things you always wanted to know!" I don't know who "the team" is or was, nor do I have the foggiest idea what, if anything, is supposed to be functionally different from Q&A.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    The forums that appear at the top of the CosmoQuest home page give an impression of what the site is about. The most visited and commented parts of the site, providing its reason for existence, are well down the list. I just did the attached numerical analysis of the CQ Forum Home Page, in order to raise the question of whether a revision of the order of forums is worth thinking about.
    Based on your comment and the rankings in that chart, I assume you're advocating moving up The Proving Grounds and General Interest forums. No one seems to have trouble finding them now, based on that ranking, and they're not that indicative of the general website mission. I especially don't think they should displace About The Forums, there's a clear need for them to be at the top. I can't see Citizen Science; Listen, Learn, Teach, Engage; or Science and Space, being displaced by ATM or OTB either.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    It appears that some of the subdivisions here have become redundant since the merger and subsequent evolution of the forum. Google Hangouts is a case in point. I responded to the most recent post just as I would have in Q&A, and the OP has not been back and it is three months now. The heading says "Talk with the team, face to face, and ask the things you always wanted to know!" I don't know who "the team" is or was, nor do I have the foggiest idea what, if anything, is supposed to be functionally different from Q&A.
    As I understand it (and that understanding might be wrong), Pamela and her staff wanted to use the upper parts of the forum (such as the Citizen Science section) to support the other missions of Cosmoquest, such as the Citizen Science projects. As best as I can tell, that never really happened, but the structures remain in place.

    None of those decisions were made by the Moderation Team, and so I think it is going to be completely up to Pamela to decide on any changes.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

    All moderation in purple - The rules

  6. #6
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    When we redid the forum structure, it was based more on significance and relevance than popularity: the "meta" forums are at the top (forums about the forum), then forums significant to the overall CosmoQuest mission, then the core - for us - "Science and Space" forums, then the less relevant stuff, and finally the forums that allow members to discuss topics that aren't strictly part of the mission of the forum. While I found your stats interesting, I really don't want to re-order to forums by popularity. Putting "Fun-n-Games" near the top, for example, would send the wrong kind of message about this forum.
    Last edited by ToSeek; 2018-Jun-11 at 03:31 PM.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  7. #7
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    I would just suggest moving Science and Space up to right below About The Forums, or even first.

    It could easily appear unusual to a newcomer that there are 50,000 posts in About The Forums but only 3000 in the top substantive forums around Citizen Science. First impressions of activity level can be influential.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    I would just suggest moving Science and Space up to right below About The Forums, or even first.

    It could easily appear unusual to a newcomer that there are 50,000 posts in About The Forums but only 3000 in the top substantive forums around Citizen Science. First impressions of activity level can be influential.
    We tried to do that with the reorganization, but the folks who pay the bills for this site insisted that their forums had to come first.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToSeek View Post
    We tried to do that with the reorganization, but the folks who pay the bills for this site insisted that their forums had to come first.
    Perhaps you may wish to revisit that based on these usage statistics?

    In practical terms, using CQ as a portal for citizen science may be best achieved by ensuring that when visitors look at the forum home page they get an accurate impression of the real purpose of the site, discussion of Science and Space.

    If that can then encourage people to engage with citizen science objectives, or with the fun and games and off topic babbling discussions for that matter, it is likely to generate more traffic than having the tiny forums of citizen science at the top of the home page.

  10. #10
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    It looks as if we might get more control over the forum in a couple of months. I'll look into it then.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

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