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Newbie Question about This Forum

Discussion in 'Q&A' started by MestnyiGeroi, Mar 19, 2017.

  1. MestnyiGeroi

    MestnyiGeroi Member

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    Hello, guys.

    I'm new to this forum. I was glad to find it, as I have been looking (casually and sporadically) for a coaster forum for years. But it seems to me that the volume of messages here is really low. It seems to me that there is one or two messages an hour on the whole forum at the most. I'm actually afraid to post too much for fear of a newbie clogging up the place.

    Is my perception wrong? Or if it is this slow, why is that? Doesn't CoasterForce have a huge number of members?

    Which would you say in response to this?

    A. Slow? This is normal, and I don't think it's particularly slow.
    B. Eh. It has ebbs and flows, and you just happened to have caught a quieter time.
    C. It picks up during the amusement park/riding season -- late Spring, Summer, and early Fall. Hang around.
    D. There are other competing coaster forums, and so this is a tight-knit community.
    E. CF used to be bigger, but we have shrunk over time.
    F. We're still slowly growing. These things take a long time.
    G. Are you only looking at the site forum? We have a robust and talkative community on Facebook (or some other form of social media). It only seems slow to you because you're stuck in an outpost.
    H. Shut up, Newbie. You haven't yet earned the right to question these things. Five strikes of the paddle!
    I. Other.

    Thanks!
     
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  2. Thekingin64

    Thekingin64 Well-Known Member

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    I think it's just due to the general decline in forums in general. I've been on this site for years (with a large gap in activity) but the site is noticeably quieter than it was in 2013 so it's point E really. Back then,as soon as any news broke it would be posted here, now it has taken well over a day for news to get here!

    I wouldn't be afraid to post though. If anything, the site needs the activity...
     
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  3. MestnyiGeroi

    MestnyiGeroi Member

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    Thanks for your answer. It's interesting that you feel forums in general are in decline on the internet. Do you mean coaster forums in general, or all forums? I have been on cinephile forums for a long, long time, and I've seen slow shrinkage there, too.

    What's taking the place of these forums? Social media? Youtube?

    Anyway, thanks also for the posting encouragement.
     
  4. Thekingin64

    Thekingin64 Well-Known Member

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    Just forums in general, I'd say. A lot of the discussion that would have been on forums is now on Social Media like Facebook. In fact, I get most of my coaster news through Facebook now and will often check if the same news has already been put on the forum. The only forum I know of that's doing well and not seeing a decline in activity is reddit...
     
  5. Pokemaniac

    Pokemaniac Well-Known Member

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    E very much. This place was booming in 2008-2010 (and probably well before then, but that's as far back as I can attest to), back before social media took over many of the discussions and happenings that used to stay on forums. In a sense, CF was a full-fledged social medium unto itself back then.

    Just look at the General Polls subforum. Go back 10 pages, and you're looking at threads from mid-late 2012. Another 10 pages, they're from mid-2010. Two years' worth of threads back then fill five years now.

    Of course, social media impact the communities in other ways too. If you wanted to follow a park for news and construction updates ten years ago, you'd have to find a forum where enthusiasts would peek over fences and take crappy photos with their novelty "camera phones". Nowadays, the parks will gladly tell you everything themselves, directly in your Facebook feed. Unless you're particularly fond of formal discussions (of the kind you can't have in a comment section), the need to sign up to a forum to keep up is greatly reduced.

    Still, we're trudging along, and I think this place is much livelier now than it was in, say, 2015. The recent forum update helped a lot, as have the efforts of our own social media team. While forums fill more of a niche role today than they did ten years ago, that niche is not going to go away anything soon. There will always be discussions to be had for those seeking them out, and CF is a place where this can happen.
     
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  6. MestnyiGeroi

    MestnyiGeroi Member

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    Thank you for the useful and informative response!

    I hate social media, and while YouTube coaster-related videos can be an amazing thing, the hit-and-run nature of the comments sections was not doing it for me. I'm glad there's still something else.

    Tbh, I was also surprised that ACE doesn't have a big centralized forum for discussion.
     
  7. Snoo

    Snoo Well-Known Member

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    You also have a ton of Lurkers out there, such as myself, who just browse and dont post as often. I used to average 10+ posts a day on relevant topics. But as poke pointed out, social media has changed the dynamic of the community.
     
  8. Will

    Will Well-Known Member

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    I'd say a mixture of the above, with the exceptions of A, F, H and I - over the next few weeks, as parks start to open, it'll probably pick up a bit.
    The forum's quieter than I remember it being, but as a by product, the quality's improved substantially and it's a lot easier to find the information you actually want :)
    Of course, that will probably all change once Thorpe start their next construction project ;)
     
  9. Chris Brown

    Chris Brown Mr CoasterForce 2016 CF Award Winner 2016

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    I've only been a member for around 2 and a bit years and have noticed the differences in forum traffic but i'd also point out that this place comes alive when there is big news in the industry, the smiler accident saw a huge increase in traffic and lots of older members came back online for discussion with loads of new members also joining, we also had some monumental construction topics in popular parks, something that we dont have too much of for 2017. When construction for the 2018 season really kicks on it'll all come back to life!

    I'd also say these forums are set up in a way that the topics dont promote general park discussion and are specific to news / construction. Not helped by the fact that most rumors are immediately shut down. Whilst TPR's set up is annoying it does promote a constant stream of discussion about a particular park.

    Also user @ATI took a lot of flack for starting multiple topics in the aim of increasing discussion, most of these topics are still floating around now and still contain debates and opinions. Whilst some saw it as spammy and annoying other just got on board and put there opinion in and actually used the topics.

    Lastly there are some members that have been on these forums since the very beginning. They've seen every topic under the sun and will often refer you back to a topic last updated in 2009 or something if you start one similar. Something i personally disagree with.

    As for more discussion we have the CoasterForce Chat group on facebook where people can share opinions on general park matters, i think its at roughly 1600 members now!
     
  10. jayjay

    jayjay Well-Known Member

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    I've been here for about ten years, so I'd agree with what most other people are saying. I've noticed an uptick in activity very recently, but it's still a lot slower than it was back in the late 2000s.

    I'm definitely more of a forum person than a social media person. I like having a nice separated space that fosters a strong community of like minded people. I've aso been making an effort to be more active recently. I guess what puts people off forums is the lack of having everything in the same place and the small hassle of creating an account.
     
  11. Howie

    Howie Well-Known Member

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    Definitely H - Shut up Newbie, you haven't yet earned the right to question these things. Five strikes of the paddle!

    Assume the position.
     
  12. MestnyiGeroi

    MestnyiGeroi Member

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    Thank you, Sir, may I have another!
     
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  13. MestnyiGeroi

    MestnyiGeroi Member

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    Thanks, all, for the interesting replies. You definitely filled me in and gave me more of a sense of this place.

    Like jayjay, I do prefer the environment of a forum. Also, I have a stubborn aversion to Facebook and the like, so this place will probably be it for me.

    Also, as I was telling one of you elsewhere, I think an effect of the forum vs. social media divide might be that the crowd here is a little older on average. It is certainly older on average than the coaster community on YouTube, and while there are some very knowledgeable and mature teenagers on YouTube, to be sure, I can't help but notice an uptick in the general maturity of discussion around here compared to there.

    Especially when it comes to flamingos, of course. ;-)
     

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