So, where is everyone?

TEMPORARY Forum to discuss the layout of the forums here. What should the top-level forums be? What sub-forums are definitely necessary?

So, where is everyone?

Postby millcake16 » Wed Mar 04, 2009 12:23 pm

Don't know about you guys, but I'm at least somewhat disappointed that there isn't more happening in these forums. We got off to a pretty fast start, but things have died down here pretty suddenly, even though new users continue to sign up. I think it's about time that someone lets cgp know, although the last I heard, Seth was waiting for Sherrie's approval. If not that, then all you club and tournament directors should let your players know that these exist. I think the lack of activity is due to lack of awareness, not interest.

Maybe if the Forums label on cross-tables could be more prominently displayed, it might catch everyone's eye better, the way it was originally. Speaking of prominent displays, I also thought it might be cool to have alerts next to upcoming tournaments that either have limited space available, or an approaching deadline.

Mostly though, I'm hoping that we get a little more action going here. We seem to mostly have users who have lj accounts, and not those who post exclusively to cgp.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby getofftheoven » Wed Mar 04, 2009 1:12 pm

I'm not sure it's awareness - lots of people visit cross-tables, and "forums" is right there at the top of the page. I think it's more that there's little content, and what is here is either not much different from cgp or is sort of an extended chat between friends (thus visitors might hesitate to barge in without a clear invitation). And since there's already cgp, LJ, ISC and other places where Scrabblers interact, it's hard to attract people to a new place unless they think it fills a need. So what does this place do that other online Scrabbly places don't? Once that question is answered more specifically, the next steps are easier to figure out.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby millcake16 » Wed Mar 04, 2009 1:33 pm

getofftheoven wrote:I'm not sure it's awareness - lots of people visit cross-tables, and "forums" is right there at the top of the page. I think it's more that there's little content, and what is here is either not much different from cgp or is sort of an extended chat between friends (thus visitors might hesitate to barge in without a clear invitation). And since there's already cgp, LJ, ISC and other places where Scrabblers interact, it's hard to attract people to a new place unless they think it fills a need. So what does this place do that other online Scrabbly places don't? Once that question is answered more specifically, the next steps are easier to figure out.


I just get the feeling that this should be the go-to place for Scrabble, whether it's for tournament listings, statistics, reports, or discussion. What I was hoping for was a more friendly environment, which we're getting, but not much activity with it. CGP hasn't been particularly active either, but if there was a notification to all subscribers that cgp was shutting down, and the place to discuss and post Scrabble topics was now at this site, we might get a little more action.

It might help if there was some way to receive e-mails when someone's comment gets replied to, so that everyone doesn't have to keep coming back to see if anything new has been posted, but that's not too big a deal.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby slipkin » Wed Mar 04, 2009 1:53 pm

millcake16 wrote:...if there was a notification to all subscribers that cgp was shutting down, and the place to discuss and post Scrabble topics was now at this site, we might get a little more action.


Oh, I would really not like that. CGP should still be the main clearinghouse for important announcements. Heck, I'd rather that people use CGP for many of these discussions! What I don't quite understand is why it doesn't *happen*. If someone posts a position here, other people respond. Wouldn't it be awesome to post positions *there* and have more people see them? If it's there, why shouldn't people respond to it?

I'm very happy to have lots of CGP-unworthy (well, unworthy of the *ideals* of CGP, heh) topics discussed here, to avoid clogging CGP, which is a *linear* stream of messages. But for the main topics, I don't fully understand the dynamics of NOT posting over there.

(Yeah, I know, I'm doing a great sell-job on these forums ;-) I just like CGP discussions, too!)
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby millcake16 » Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:06 pm

slipkin wrote:
millcake16 wrote:...if there was a notification to all subscribers that cgp was shutting down, and the place to discuss and post Scrabble topics was now at this site, we might get a little more action.


Oh, I would really not like that. CGP should still be the main clearinghouse for important announcements. Heck, I'd rather that people use CGP for many of these discussions! What I don't quite understand is why it doesn't *happen*. If someone posts a position here, other people respond. Wouldn't it be awesome to post positions *there* and have more people see them? If it's there, why shouldn't people respond to it?

I'm very happy to have lots of CGP-unworthy (well, unworthy of the *ideals* of CGP, heh) topics discussed here, to avoid clogging CGP, which is a *linear* stream of messages. But for the main topics, I don't fully understand the dynamics of NOT posting over there.

(Yeah, I know, I'm doing a great sell-job on these forums ;-) I just like CGP discussions, too!)


Just to be clear, I wasn't suggesting that cgp SHOULD be shut down. That was just an "if-then" sort of statement.

The problem is that a lot of players aren't subscribed to cgp, and many of those that are don't post much, if anything, because they tire of the mostly negative content that goes on there. I have no explanation of why board positions don't get posted very often, and when they do, there is little or no interest in them. Maybe it's because subscribers are always looking for something controversial, and when there isn't anything controversial, they'd rather say nothing than something nice at all. Yeah, that sounds strange, but it's the sad truth.

If we want cgp to be a better place, then we'll have to somehow remove it's current negative image, which may not be possible at this point. Unless everyone on this forum posts there, begging you all to get back to what made cgp interesting in the first place. Somehow, I'm not so optimistic that would work.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby getofftheoven » Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:55 pm

I don't think cgp's near as bad as some people like to say it is. And even if it was, if you shut it down and moved the action here, the most irksome posters would probably just come along anyway. I do like the threaded structure here better, though. Question is, do we want this place to attract all Scrabblers (like cgp tries to do), or just the LJ types as it mostly does now? If it's the first one, then we have to accept that the tone of this place would likely be similar to what cgp has been. If it's the second, we'll probably see the low traffic we have now, since many LJers post things on their LJs (can post friends-only, can speak more freely) rather than posting them here.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby millcake16 » Wed Mar 04, 2009 4:06 pm

getofftheoven wrote:I don't think cgp's near as bad as some people like to say it is. And even if it was, if you shut it down and moved the action here, the most irksome posters would probably just come along anyway. I do like the threaded structure here better, though. Question is, do we want this place to attract all Scrabblers (like cgp tries to do), or just the LJ types as it mostly does now? If it's the first one, then we have to accept that the tone of this place would likely be similar to what cgp has been. If it's the second, we'll probably see the low traffic we have now, since many LJers post things on their LJs (can post friends-only, can speak more freely) rather than posting them here.


True, cgp isn't as bad as we all say. But it just isn't all that fun anymore. Most everything here has been fun, such as the Chuck Norris thread, the guess who game, and the few position discussions that have been going on here. The biggest improvement of this site over cgp is that you can pick where you post. The majority of the unpleasantness seems to be over the lexicon debate, so if the whole cgp crowd wants to come over and debate some more about it, at least it will be confined to that thread only, and those who subscribe via e-mail to cgp won't have to wear out the delete button.

Ideally, the whole community would have one place and one place only to all get together, just so it doesn't feel like some of us are out in left field, and some of us are out in right field. There will still be those who choose to only post on their blogs, which of course is fine, but it would be nice to have us all together. I don't even find it all that necessary to have the tournament-directors group, since it's not like it's top secret to non-directors.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby aibretty » Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:29 am

I do understand the attraction of the linear all-inclusiveness of cgp (although I haven't looked at it in well over a year). I think if that kind of switch over were to be welcomed there would need to be a way to at least mimic that here. I think a lot of old cgp users would find x-forums to be a little confusing and hard to get a handle on. Maybe if there were a way to subscribe to certain forums to receive daily/periodic e-mail updates similar to cgp, there might be more cross traffic.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby Yarn Chief Sr » Fri Mar 06, 2009 2:07 am

I actually don't like the linearity of CGP at all (I don't read it online, though -- I get e-mails sent and filtered), and one thing I like so much better about these forums is you can choose what you like: linearity or threaded.

To clarify: for those who don't know, there's a link to see all new posts, and that, more or less, streamlines things, putting all new topics on one page much like CGP (or you can go to each individual forum). So for me, what works is being able to pick the new outta each forum and ignore threads I don't find much interest in.

Give it time, things will get more active. Gotta remember, the community isn't that big anyway. My two cents. :)
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby ElevenKids » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:33 pm

These forums could be more attractive & lively:
- The default page http://cross-tables.com/ could highlight a featured post or two, hopefully recent
- or at least the tab could twinkle a little

Something about them could be a little more "news"y.
The forum page http://cross-tables.com/forums could highlight new posts with a date at least.
The page already looks full so no particular category tries to grab my attention.

Some of these remarks are inspired by comparison to chess.com. That's a very happenin' site. One feature in particular is "hot topics" in the forums, which I guess are just the top threads to receive the most responses recently (some dual condition on time and number of posts - not too long a time and not too few posts.) If there are no hot topics maybe it could show tepid topics instead until it starts to catch on more :)

Anyway, the main Scrabble issues today on my mind are: how is the planet going to feed itself without eating itself up; how can I afford to keep going to tournaments; what will happen to fill the void that will be left if the Dallas Open really ends; who would be my perfect scrabble roommate, that we would both win the prize we were after?
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby 3dnf » Sat Mar 10, 2012 5:31 pm

What if somewhere on the homepage there was a feed of the 5 most recently posted threads? People could click to get directly to the thread and post if they were logged in, and people would take more note of the forum if it were on the main page.
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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby ElevenKids » Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:09 am

.....
P.S. To be more specific, one thing chess.com does to me is send me an email every time it's my turn in a game. It can be set up so I get an email or notification on the screen whenever somebody answers a post I have made (ok, that is more like Facebook). In other words, make it NAG people harder, and then their poor distracted minds will remember to come Here, the best new place ....

Maybe do a little more to customize the look, so it has Naspa icon on it, and change the colors a little bit to match. Colors of bonus squares! pink & blue?? I dunno! Just a suggestion.

Am also imagining a Scrabble News Aggregator that would combine info & updates from the Newsletter, the wiki, cross-tables, the facebook site (well maybe the facebook site)

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Re: So, where is everyone?

Postby Yarn Chief Sr » Tue Jul 31, 2012 11:05 pm

3dnf wrote:What if somewhere on the homepage there was a feed of the 5 most recently posted threads? People could click to get directly to the thread and post if they were logged in, and people would take more note of the forum if it were on the main page.


Wow, this is so eerie. I just emailed Seth this exact idea before logging onto the forums. Maybe it'll help bring traffic in a bit more.

Kevin's ideas are good too.
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