New thread per video?

I was thinking that having one thread per video may be overkill. I think it ends up cluttering the forums with way too many inactive threads. This may be a visual thing but I have the feeling that the forums here would benefit from a different approach and not create a new thread for every new video.

If someone has a question about a topic that is covered in a video, it’s simple enough to link to it instead. What do you think?

The thread gets generated automatically via an API, not much can be done, other than remove it altogether and doing it manually. I think discourse has this thing built-in, which makes things easy.

The feature is fine as it is, it’s the forum that needs more active users to spread out some of the system messages and give other users something else than just a sub feed for LLTV. The Level1 forums is one such example (although this auto-generated option was disabled in favor of manually written articles and wiki pages, which take more time to write, but are easier to update, unlike making a video, then a correction video, then another update video - one wiki page to rule all the update videos, with always up-to-date information).

It takes time to expand the forum with active users and it’s kinda up to Jay to do it. He does mention the forum from time to time, but it’s easy to forget the message. Again, bringing L1 to the front, the forum page is shilled more in the videos, with scrolling snippets through the latest feed on the main page, which shows a lot of activity. Also, Wendell is very active on his forum.

Now again, it’s up to Jay on what he wants this forum to be. From what I get, this is mostly a place to learn linux and ask questions, either regarding Jay’s videos, or general linux questions. Comparing this to other places, which have more users and more generic tech (and non-tech) categories, it’s easy to see why having a specific focus group (learning linux) would attract less people than a more generic tech-oriented website (hardware, software, be it linux, windows, or programs, electronics projects, even off-topic posts like music, tv shows and other threads for sharing user activities and news).

But I feel like having a focus would bring a certain quality / type of people here. Even if people only come here to learn linux and eventually learn it and stay, it would make for a better place to ask linux specific questions and maybe make kind of like semi-professional, yet casual atmosphere, where people can share their latest tips in linux security, platforms setups etc. Like a server-fault / linux stack exchange kinda place for q&a, but also a place with specific tutorials like Jay’s nextcloud and whatever else setup. I feel like the internet kinda needs a few of these kinds of ultra-focused user driven forum platforms (makes it easier to navigate than a stack exchange or quora and helps with back-and-forth conversations, instead of the static q&a).

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I would like for this forum to be more active, but for me specifically who is still in the non-technical camp I find myself either not knowing what I could post that would add value and not being able to help others with whatever they want to do.

When it comes to the video posts, I find that I don’t normally have anything to comment after I see something, so to me the videos don’t represent opportunities for discussion. Then when it’s a ton of videos back to back with no one else providing input, it becomes a subscription feed like @ThatGuyB mentioned which could discourage others from thinking to post. Basically, it doesn’t look active.

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I agree with @Yolomatic_Swagmaster, a ton of threads without any or few replies is very discouraging for people who may be looking into a more insightful conversation where naturally more discussion would arise.

The bite-size videos are a great format to consume and learn from, but not very estimulating on a written form. If a viewer had questions about something and came to the forums, seeing multiple active threads, even if not necessarily recent activity, that would give a bit of a booster to go ahead and start a new conversation there.
Even for the curious so-called “crawler” who never posts anything (nothing against it, to be clear) it makes it harder to go on the look for interesting threads.

Certainly Jay could emphasize to his viewers the existence of this platform as a place to expand on the learning. But more importantly than that, I think, is one needs to feel welcome to participate and not a “guess” to see who turns out.

I’m curious to know what’s the average lifetime of a comment section on any given video. Conversations there cannot be very productive, at least that has rarely be the case for me.

It may very well be psychological but I’m sure this is exactly what most people feel when they come to peek on the forums.

I don’t know how many registered subscribers to the forum there are so it may well be that there are only a few of us. I know Jay apologised at one time for not frequenting the forum himself that often. I have no issue with anybody posing questions however trvial. We all have to learn and others can help. At least here people are willing to help others, and not put them down as you see on some forums and similar. Personally I watch the email notifications and if there something appears where I can help, or find interesting then I will contribute.

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I’ve made a few silly and/or basic questions here and I certainly liked how patient and helpful people were to me :slight_smile: I know some of those forums and communities on Discord, etc, that are quite the opposite of that.

The idea of not opening a new thread per video is to remove the illusion that this forum is not active. Although I suppose it could also be this simple: there aren’t enough frequent visitors who participate.

Sorry I didn’t see this thread until more recently. I’ve been absolutely SLAMMED with stuff to do over the past several months. As a result of that, there wasn’t enough time to do everything on my list any given day.

The good news though, is that this situation is already improving. So it should be easier for me to keep better track of things as my workload starts to normalize. I’m actually thinking about taking a few days off here and there, and the fact I can entertain that thought is a good sign!

For me, my current “needs” for this forum and site are as follows:

  • I want the Wordpress comment system completely disabled, it’s a spam target anyway.
  • But I still want people to be able to discuss videos.
  • I need one place to manage discussions on this site, to help consolidate the workload

For those reasons, I implemented a system that automatically creates a new thread per video. The Wordpress comment system is bypassed, and since the forum handles all comments, I have one place to manage discussions. So each box is checked.

However, I see the point - a lot of empty posts certainly doesn’t look good, and that’s not ideal. So I’m open to other ways of solving this. If there was a way to create a forum post only when someone goes to comment, that would be the best! Then, no topic would ever show up unless someone wanted to comment.

The slow adoption of the forum is definitely my fault. At one point, there was a scammer her used my photo and posted racist things, pretending to be me. For that reason, I implemented a user approval process. But unfortunately, with the way my workload was, it would take me a few weeks (or longer) to have a chance to check in here, so I wouldn’t be surprised if most of the users waiting for approvals just gave up.

But now that my workload is becoming much much much better lately, I feel I can do a better job with managing the forum. But I still don’t want to manage it all by myself, so I need to come up with a system where people can help if they want to, or at least share ideas for how to do things better.

I’ll prepare a volunteer post as soon as I can. I’m thinking that I’ll create an admin channel within the Discord chat where I can be notified if something needs my attention.

So be on the look out for a volunteer post for those that might be interested, but in the meantime, please continue sharing thoughts here :slight_smile: