How to kick-start the new Vmug forum?

TimRichards

Member
Having posted these thoughts on the listserve it occurs to me they are perhaps best posted here; it may serve as a beginning to discussion which could itself demonstrate some of the advantages, in fact both the pros and the cons, of the forum itself.
I believe it would be helpful to see input and discussion on the topics below and other related thoughts!
By way of support, I belong to a forum about sports fishing in BC. It is full of past discussions which is a treasure trove of information. Recently I noticed that 250 people were online at the same time as I was!

As the VMug forum grows, I feel it has this kind of potential - driven by an active and involved membership, mostly online.

A couple of observations about changing over.

1. If you think you will miss the sometimes very quick response to posed questions, I think that may be true, replies may not be so rapid in the new system. However,

2. To avoid not receiving timely replies to your query, or other interesting discussions, simply subscribe to your own or any other interesting threads.

3. Until most participants move over, the forums will remain sparse -- and not worth visiting. So I feel we must collectively decide to punt to the forum, even if it means giving up the comfort of the listserve. It would require a goodwill effort, start on a given day, and run solid for at least a month. Evaluating after that trial period.

4. Move the Mac-brains over to the forum and the rest of us will follow.

5. Provide a little different support for the forum during the change-over month or two. For example volunteers could provide phone support with some tips and tricks until it is smoothed out. This would provide a smoother transition for valued members who might otherwise become frustrated with yet another learning curve.

6. Speaking as an out-of-Towner member the eventual collected wisdom of our resource people would be extremely valuable over time. 'Consultant' members could simply say, see this discussion, and provide a link, and direct members to the solution to many issues.

7. Finally, since I can never make a meeting in person in Victoria, I would be very keen on making meeting presentations available via the net, such as through sound or video recording, or in some cases written notes from a wonderful volunteer.

Cheers and best of the holiday season.
Submitted with respect for those who give so much in VMug.
 

tfindlay

Administrator
Staff member
Best wishes to you too for a great holiday season. Thanks for the very constructive comments and suggestions.

I agree that there needs to be a critical mass of members using the forum before it will become an interesting place to visit. We are hoping that the forum membership will continue to grow and will eventually become the default source for getting answers to questions people have about Apple products.

I think it would be a good idea to encourage members to move over to the forum by a certain date. When the executive originally discussed the idea of creating a forum we thought we would like to have everyone moved over by January 1st. I'm not sure if that will happen or not but it is encouraging to see that more people everyday are signing up for the forum.

When I presented the idea of a forum to members at the last meeting most people seemed supportive. There was some concern expressed about having to give up the listserv. We have decided to keep both systems going indefinitely or until one system or the other becomes an obvious member favourite.

At the moment all of the executive and several other VMUG member Mac experts are already members of the forum so the quality of responses to members' questions should be equal to that given on the listserv.

Thanks for your support and encouragement and for using this forum.
 

DaveWT

Well-Known Member
Yes, I have wondered about the idea of responding to questions on the listserv, by posting the answers on the forum and then just providing a link on the listserv to that answer. It may increase exposure that way, but may be seen as a bit heavy handed.

I note comments like "I joined the club because of the listserv" (when actually one may have joined due to the INFORMATION on the listserv and not the listserv in itself. But who knows for sure. We sure are all creatures of habit.

It is early days yet, the January goal may be a bit optomistic. Sort of like all the Syrian refugees by Christmas.

Dave
 

tfindlay

Administrator
Staff member
Good points. I do like the idea of posting answers to listserv question on the forum. Perhaps we could announce that the executive will be starting this practice as of Jan. 1st.
 
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