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Re: Forums as Comment engine?




I’ve no issue with us disagreeing on things, heck if we all agreed on everything it’d be a boring life; but you’re making a few leaps here mate.

To state that WordPress is difficult to customise is, frankly, absolutely mental. WordPress’ strength was and is just how amazingly easy it is to customise. Thats not to say it’s the best tool for every job, but “[WordPress] is difficult to customise”?? lunacy.

To also suggest that WordPress has un-managed comments from visitors show a total lack of knowledge of it. WordPress handles comments and visitors amazingly well. Pagination, threading, custom types, moderation, different theming, searching, functions oh my the list goes on and on. Again, it’s not the best tool for every job, but “un-managed comments from visitors” is so wrong a statement its unreal.




All of that aside, as I said above, creating a post to bbPress button or plugin for WordPress would be easy. In the same way you’ve managed to get yours working.

But I commented on between what yourself and Lethality wanted to do, is that you’d only mentioned about the initial stages, and not how the users would react or use the site. If you want to define the topic of conversation and have users comment on it – guess what, thats a 1 to 1 conversation. If you want to define a topic and have users comment on it but allow them to comment on each other’s commnet, thats a 1 to many conversation (threading). bbPress and forums on the whole don’t work that way, not because someone hasn’t thought it up before, but because the user doesn’t think that way.

Paul Hawke made a good example about a site in the MMORPG community. I replied with a similar one, showing how this way of thinking would work, as long as it was followed through for the user. I also quantified this:

slightly off topic (big shock) but this sort of thing depends on the usergroup immensely. people who play mmorpgs as an example are used to forums and doing things in front of others; where as say a Classical Music Magazine website/blog’s users might not be really up for entering a forum flame war

Over the years we’ve had loads of requests for weird and wonderful things in bbPress. Some cool, some not, some interesting, some not. How many cool and interesting forums (bbPress or not) that work differently to the norm do you see out there? There is a reason for that. It’s not because I’ve got a different view, or becasue I’m being difficult, it’s becasue Users go with what they know. If you plan to do anything in a slightly different way, you have to also plan for any and all ways random users will attempt to either do things the way they know or a new way.

A very wise man at Microsoft once said:

Users on websites are like the frogs at the end of Jurassic Park.

No matter how much you think something through, how much technology you put in place, how much you hope they’ll do things they way you want them to or how difficult you make something for them… as soon as you change something that they want to do, they’ll start fucking it up and making very obvious and loud dinosaurs.

I’m seriously all for you folks doing something new and wonderful; and heck if you pull it off my hat will be the first one off. Infact, i offered step by step adive on exactly how to do what Lethality needed, I just suggested that he think about it from a different perspective too. The internet is littered with websites who tried to change how users interacted with it, very very few succeed, and those that do are very very dependant on their userbase’s base HCI mechanics.

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