Is SEC too complicated?

Discussion in 'About South East Central & Your Feedback' started by crofton park gooner, May 17, 2011.

  1. Hi, love the site (and Brockley Central) and really respect the amount of work you have put in. I was wondering however if the sub-categories in the forums could be slimmed down. For example is there really a need for General News and Debate and then News in the culture section? Just an idea.

    Keep up the great work.
  2. clogsilk

    clogsilk Fountain of Southern Knowledge

    I find it bewildering!
  3. Nick Barron

    Nick Barron Admin Staff Member

    We've now culled quite a few of the sub forums, since they have proved unnecessary. There are probably still a few too many, but they contain some useful stuff, so they'll stay for now...

    Clogsilk, not sure what you find confusing, but a good way to follow the conversations is to click on the members tab and then "recent activity" so you can see what people have posted most recently.
  4. Gibby

    Gibby Member

    Yes there are quite a few sub forums and they could do with trimming in time, but it's hardly rocket science!
  5. clogsilk

    clogsilk Fountain of Southern Knowledge

    I'm more used to forums where everything is just on one page - so no subforums to navigate!
  6. Rosie

    Rosie Respected Local

    like the format of South East Central,
    but will prob take a long time to take off if threads are posted on Brockley Central by moderators and not here - also the opportunity to remain anonymous is obv an attractive one on BC.
  7. fongchau

    fongchau Local

    Personally, I find all of the sub forums for the different areas a bit much. I live near St Johns station and I hang out, and want to know about what goes on in Brockley, Depford, Lewisham and other places - why the segregation?
  8. Rosie

    Rosie Respected Local

    The sub-sections give room for growth and for people in the particular areas to have an 'online community'. It only works if people post anyway. When you log on you can see if there have been any updates in the different sections so it doesn't take long to read any new threads/updates. It is early days for the SE Central. Well done for getting it going in the first place.
  9. Brockley Jon

    Brockley Jon Admin Staff Member

    Hi folks, just wanted to address the comments re. the site being a bit overcomplicated. Sorry this comes a bit late, but I've been away (see below!).

    SEC is still very much in 'beta'. Nick & I took the approach to somewhat over-deliver on the sub-forums. I do agree that there is overlapping, and we'll address this is due course once we see which of the forums is being used more or less. One of the good things about having lots of sub-forums is that as the site grows it will be easier to find content.

    Something we hope to do is to put a 'latest activity' box on the home page, and also to make it easier to see the sub-forums within a forum without having to click into each area.

    Rosie, thanks, and you are exactly right when you say it's early days. Currently the site uses the standard 'out of the box' template, which works, and has some very nice usability features, but doesn't have a great deal of character. The site hasn't changed a great deal since launch as, 1. the platform, XenForo, has proven a little more fiddly to make changes to than I'd originally anticipated, and 2. that I've been busy organising my wedding and have just got back from honeymoon :)

    Hopefully you'll start to see a few small changes here and there now that I have [a bit] more time to put into it.
  10. Rosie

    Rosie Respected Local

    Brockley Jon,
    Congratulation on getting married.

    Hope the SEC gets more active but seems Brockleyites prefer to be able to post anonymously on the Brockley Central. Although some of the posts are awful, and the tone can be quite scathing. I doubt people would post some of the comments online if they had given an email contact as in the SEC.
  11. Nick Barron

    Nick Barron Admin Staff Member

    Yes, it will build slowly. Lots more people read it than contribute. Perhaps BC has institutionalised people so they're not used to contributing their own stuff. I think the desire for anonymity is less about not giving an email and more about not having a consistent "personality". Those that do, like Monkeyboy or Tamsin, can be held to account for things they've said in the past. If you're anon, no-one ever how the opinions you're expressing compare to things you've said in the past.
  12. Brockley Jon

    Brockley Jon Admin Staff Member

    There are definitely people out there who want to post anonymously, and there are sites for them, like BC. I'm personally very pleased with the progress we're making on SEC, and the quality of the conversation so far.

    My focus (apart from just learning to be a forum admin!) is not getting the BC crew to all come and chat here, but building activity in the other areas that perhaps aren't as well served, where there is a genuine need for a forum.

    I'm glad we have gone down the route of making people sign up before they can post - the site is a nicer place for it, and I hope people feel they can post without fearing an angry mob reaction. The one thing the anons bring to BC that I miss here is a few LOL one-liners once in a while, but as we get more people regularly contributing I think we'll start to see that here too.
  13. clogsilk

    clogsilk Fountain of Southern Knowledge

    Congrats on your marriage and I hope the site keeps on growing.
  14. KennyTinsel

    KennyTinsel Local

    It's not that it's "complicated" it's just that in its current state it won't achieve a critical mass, IMHO. I like a forum, and I'd like to contribute to South East Central. But I have other stuff to do too. I'd like to skim one page of discussions, choose from the titles the ones that interest me, and then post. As it is, there might be posts that interest me in any of a dozen different places, and I don't have time (or inclination) to click through them all to find everything of interest.

    Of course, in time, when a forum is getting too busy (by whatever subjective measure you choose - personally I'd go for the list of threads with new posts in a 24 hr period to exceed the first page of the forum), then you hive off a sub forum according to whatever subject best divides the traffic / interests. Even if we accept the geographical divisions (and I'd suggest there isn't enough traffic yet to warrant these), within the "Brockley" category there are 8 further divisions. If the board owners want the site to grow more quickly, I would certainly recommend that they reduce the number of fora for the time being.

    Brockley Jon wrote:
    But you will retard your growth, and it's easy to move stuff later!

    Nick Barron wrote:
    I'm not familiar with XenForo, but surely you can move threads into different boards before deleting or masking the original board?
    Matt and clogsilk like this.
  15. clogsilk

    clogsilk Fountain of Southern Knowledge

    I think that's exactly right KennyTinsel, it's time consuming to know where to look for things.

    And the current number of sub forums seems to encourage people to post the same post in more than one place, which is then very annoying if you use the What's New view.
  16. Nick Barron

    Nick Barron Admin Staff Member

    @Kenny you'd think merging would be easy yes, but last time I attempted it, I wiped out Nunhead! We're getting there...
  17. Headhunter

    Headhunter Super-South-Easter

    I find it pretty straightforward, I bypass all the sub menus and sections and go straight to "what's new?"...
  18. KennyTinsel

    KennyTinsel Local

    Ah, yes, that's a much better view. I hadn't discovered that. Thank you.
  19. Brockley Jon

    Brockley Jon Admin Staff Member

    @Kenny, thanks for the feedback, you make some good points. Yes, What's New is handy. When I get a chance I'll be adding this onto the homepage in condensed form. And we will be making some further cuts to the sub-forums.
  20. Danja

    Danja Respected Local

    It's getting worse as some bits (Middle-East Dulwich) get busier, as new posts doesn't work as a short cut anymore really. You need to ditch the subfora underneath each sub-area. It's just too clumsy to have to click down to check for new stuff in each sub-topic one might be interested in in each sub-area one might be interested in.

    Yours, P.O..

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