Why do people start forums ?

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  • As a none tech person I often wonder why people start social forums . Setting it all up must take considerable time ,expertise and expense .

    Is it just to be social in the same way that radio hams used to be ?

  • Yes its just another means of social interaction, a way to express views and opinions, also as is the case on here post information on interests and hobbies, take for instance the section on the forms of different TV platforms some of the users on here have an interest in that.

    I just have an interest on waffling on but not to the extent of doing essay like walls of text like some do, I prefer more concise and to the point approach. For me its about quality rather than quantity, don't see the point of boring people to death. :P

    Young boys in the park jumpers for goalpost that's what footballs all about isn't it.

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    I'm a member of a number of specialist forums related to my technical knowledge and it's useful to be able to tap into the general knowledge of other engineers in my field. If I come across a problem then it's likely that somebody else knows how to fix it.

    I have been a member of a forum related to my car so that I can tap into the general knowledge there especially about the engine that is fairly unusual in it's design. (Rover's K series)

    Then there's just the general waffle as Ron says that can be amusing.

  • Hi Jack, there are numerous reasons to start a social forum. A lot of the time it's to share experiences and knowledge, such as in Motorcycling, Motoring, Caravanning, Model making, Politics ETC.ETC. If others have an interest, they join in. The most important point in any forum, is that any posts be concise and to the point. Posts containing huge numbers of lines of copy/paste from other sources are generall frowned upon with most other contributers totally ignoring them.

    I have admiration for those who set up, run and moderate social forums. :thumbup:

  • The best reason these days to start a forum is so the social media giants don't have the monopoly of everything.....decentralisation. There's also more privacy on forums including open forums like this compared to the likes of facepoop etc. Forums don't get monitored in the same way and can be completely private and hidden if needs be. It depends on the sensitivity of the subject.

    There's a lot of money to be potentially be made through forums if they advertise or sell data in the same way the social media giants do or even money to be made through donations. It can also be a means of leap frogging to YouTube for example and expanding ones business all under the guise of doing something for the greater good. Build up your online presence, traffic and links as long as your visible and allow robots like google bot to your forum. That's not to say that some forums are not completely selfless and free though the majority accept donations to cover hosting costs which can build up to a fair bit depending on how many members a forum has and how many folk are willing to donate. Lots of forums will allow trade advertising as a form of income.

    Political forums are the oddball as they don't really have a subject as such and are generally just a battle ground for entertainment, agreeing, disagreeing and talking shit which is what politics is all about really. They can also very much become an echo chamber and a pain in the arse so never to be taken seriously. It's because of these problems that politics and religion more often than not are completely banned from most forums if they have any sense. The better forums are those that are of a more specialist niche subject where everyone respects each other and have proper debates and help each other out but we all need a break to chat shit sometimes.

    • Official Post

    As a none tech person I often wonder why people start social forums . Setting it all up must take considerable time ,expertise and expense .

    Is it just to be social in the same way that radio hams used to be ?

    As a non tech person myself.... ;) I set this forum up in January 2017, in part, as a means to take my mind off my dad's death which happened in August 2016.

    I had looked after him for over 10 years as he had dementia and just wanted a little place on the internet of my own. Little did I know then, that my "oodles" of free time that I was expecting to have after his death, would soon come to end, as even when my dad was alive, my mum was experiencing a few gaps in her speech....

    Her speech issues barely registered with me at the time, but it soon became apparent that she had dementia too. So, my caring duties resumed by the end of 2017 and certainly by 2018 it had become full time again, hence my lack of involvement in the site. Although a recent software upgrade will help to aide me and everyone else, with speedier thread creation, so it's not all bad news. :)

  • People want to have their say. People want to make their point of view known.

    I can't force people to agree with my point of view and I wouldn't want to try. All I do is put my point out there and then defend it against the flak that comes back at me for speaking my mind.

    That is all fair enough and I think we all generally buy into that. The problems arise when points of view become confrontational. Yep, I'm as guilty of that as anybody. I freely admit it.

    Many things arouse strong emotions and that is exacerbated when positions become entrenched.... again, I'm the first to put my hand up to that. And I'm not the only one guilty of it. You know who you are.

    In the early days of discussion forums, some would start multiple accounts - sock puppets - and some people would bring their mates in to side with them and even attempt to attack individuals to the point where they would give up and leave rather than carry on.

    Most of these problems are not as bad now as they used to be. Sure, there is some trolling that goes on and interpersonal differences still pervade on many issues. There is a fine line between attempting to howl somebody down, and calling them out on a specific point.

    When does one end and the other begin...? You tell me.

    The bottom line is that discussion forums provide a very good vehicle for people to have their say. For me, that is the most important issue.

    You can have your point of view and that's fine too, but I reserve the right to challenge you for your comments. You can do the same to me. Vigorous discussion is fair game.

    There is no debate without dissent.

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