Author Topic: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts  (Read 6697 times)

Offline Stevie Leifheit

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Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« on: October 30, 2011, 03:14:53 PM »
So, I've had a couple people tell me they were disappointed with the forums recently. They went on to say that it's just not the same as it used to be, that things have changed; sadly for the worse.


I haven't been around for to long (only 2 years), so this goes out to all you veteran members. What in your opinion happened, and what can we do to revive things a bit? I know a complete restoration isn't going to happen quick (and it's really hard to bring back those old members we all loved), but lets try to change to ya'll's liking...shall we?


Give us your thoughts on what went wrong and how we can change it.


NOTE: If you are a relatively new member we'd love to hear your thoughts as well. Even if you haven't been here long, everyone can have great ideas!
« Last Edit: November 01, 2011, 06:22:02 AM by Stevie Leifheit »
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Offline Alex Melusky

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2011, 04:00:32 PM »
Honestly, I do not think there is an easy way that a forum could be made to change. Forums depend on the people who post on them, so to change a forum, you must change the people. That said, changing the people is not exactly necessary to change the forum - it would just help a bit. Who knows, maybe the forums are not as lively as of late because everyone is out training instead of posting  ;).
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Offline Nick Fernandez

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2011, 04:16:17 PM »
Not sure what people are disappointed about, and like Alex said, maybe it just has to do with the people and the discussions going on lately? Maybe people are discussing less seriously on parkour and more in the Socialize thread? Other way around? I don't know, I am one of those relatively new people but only new in registration, otherwise without this account I've been watching the APK forums for a lot longer. But if it has to do with the forum setup and such, I'm just gonna have to go with dealing with what I'm going to start calling "Facebook Syndrome". Facebook usually changes its setup/style every few months. People get upset and try to start some revolution by sparking up a "Like" page to get it changed back. About 1-2 weeks later the users begin to like or get used to the changes and never remember the difference. Several months later, rinse and repeat. But things change, if everything's always the same then where are we going and what's the point? Everything's nice the first time around but people like variety.
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Offline Kyle Rudolph

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2011, 06:11:08 PM »
I've seen things man.

I wouldn't recommend it.
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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2011, 09:13:12 PM »
I'm new, bla.

More philosophical-related threads.

Offline Stevie Leifheit

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2011, 01:07:02 PM »
I've seen things man.

I wouldn't recommend it.


Uh...what?



I'm new, bla.

More philosophical-related threads.


Dude, why don't you start some threads? That would be great.
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Offline Alex Patterson

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2011, 02:10:32 PM »
I've been on here bout a year now. What I've noticed is it seems like there  can't be any debate without it  getting mean. I love debate and discussions. But the mean negativity just gets in the way of that.

Offline Kimberly Heuer

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2011, 03:54:11 PM »
Honestly, I find it kind of obnoxious that when any topic barely touches on something religious or politics related it's immediately threatened to get locked up. I mean, I understand the no politics or religious discussions rule; such topics can get violent and nasty in real life, and everyone is meaner on the internet. But I do think that some discussion should allowed (the religion thread Kyle started is a good example), if it's in the context of sharing ideas and opinions and isn't combative or offensive.

*shrugs*

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Offline Nick Fernandez

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2011, 05:38:08 PM »


Dude, why don't you start some threads? That would be great.

I've wanted to start some threads too, but it seems like there's already one for everything that I'm thinking or wouldn't start any discussion. There's the Movement thread but I've found that just going out and practicing it works better than the repetitive "Jump, delay, tuck" or "Kick, twist, land on
  • foot"
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Offline Jordan Strybos

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2011, 07:17:28 PM »
The forums have just changed because the members have changed. People have conflicting opinions, and people come and go, so the level of activity of the forum fluctuates. I'm not sure how much needs to be changed or updated to make people more active, because when it comes down to it, the community will only be as active as its members. The best way to make the site more appealing to new members and to make the community more active is for each member to individually try to contribute more.

Offline Sparklefish

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2011, 12:17:15 AM »
Honestly, I find it kind of obnoxious that when any topic barely touches on something religious or politics related it's immediately threatened to get locked up. I mean, I understand the no politics or religious discussions rule; such topics can get violent and nasty in real life, and everyone is meaner on the internet. But I do think that some discussion should allowed (the religion thread Kyle started is a good example), if it's in the context of sharing ideas and opinions and isn't combative or offensive.

*shrugs*

My $0.02

The religious and political threads have been way more polite than the parkour-related debates.  Also, they don't tend to get dominated by only one or two voices like the ad nauseum pk/fr, commercialization, et al. threads. 

The forums have just changed because the members have changed. People have conflicting opinions, and people come and go, so the level of activity of the forum fluctuates. I'm not sure how much needs to be changed or updated to make people more active, because when it comes down to it, the community will only be as active as its members. The best way to make the site more appealing to new members and to make the community more active is for each member to individually try to contribute more.

This is pretty much it.

There are also more people doing parkour now.  Three to five years ago forums were essential, because most of us lived hours away from the next closest person or group doing parkour.  Nowadays, it's everywhere.  Three years ago, it was me and three dudes in my town of 160,000.  Now we teach a class with 30 regularly enrolled students, plus drop-ins.  Almost all of our students over 12 also train outside.  If new people want to discuss philosophy, they can just ask coach, or talk to each other about it post-training.  Where it used to be a "jam" if more than 5 guys were around, regular sessions of 10-20 traceurs feel like the crew getting together for a lazy day of training.  Sure, it's not that big everywhere, but it is in a lot more places than it used to be.  There's just less need to get feedback, encouragement, or a sounding board from a forum when you have a coach or five buddies to train with.


Offline Stevie Leifheit

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Re: Forum Revival-Help Us With This New Initiative
« Reply #11 on: November 01, 2011, 06:17:46 AM »
The forums have just changed because the members have changed. People have conflicting opinions, and people come and go, so the level of activity of the forum fluctuates. I'm not sure how much needs to be changed or updated to make people more active, because when it comes down to it, the community will only be as active as its members. The best way to make the site more appealing to new members and to make the community more active is for each member to individually try to contribute more.

Agree 100%


But my hope behind this thread wasn't to make more people active necessarily. It was to figure out those little things (like the lack of religious and political discussion) that annoy people to the point where they become less active. Figuring these problems out should in turn help with activity level. 
« Last Edit: November 01, 2011, 06:20:58 AM by Stevie Leifheit »
Weight training alongside parkour always benefits, it never takes away.


Quote from: Joe Brock
It's like you are some kind of APK Angel...not the girly kind...but the big "Sodom destroying" ones!!!

Offline Jordan Strybos

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #12 on: November 01, 2011, 09:03:33 AM »
But my hope behind this thread wasn't to make more people active necessarily. It was to figure out those little things (like the lack of religious and political discussion) that annoy people to the point where they become less active. Figuring these problems out should in turn help with activity level. 

On this subject, I feel similar to what Sam said earlier. In the past, we had a section somewhere (I can't remember exactly which board it was in) called Philosophy, and there were a multitude of brilliant threads in it, but I can't seem to find it anymore :-\ I'd love to see that resurrected.

I'm just gonna have to go with dealing with what I'm going to start calling "Facebook Syndrome". Facebook usually changes its setup/style every few months. People get upset and try to start some revolution by sparking up a "Like" page to get it changed back. About 1-2 weeks later the users begin to like or get used to the changes and never remember the difference. Several months later, rinse and repeat. But things change, if everything's always the same then where are we going and what's the point? Everything's nice the first time around but people like variety.

This is tricky because this forum's layout is based and dependent on the forum community software Simple Machines Forum, or SMF for short. SMF is a great software package, and a wonderful tool to use for this community, but the look and style of this forum is dependent on the current version of SMF, so there isn't really a way for us to change it regularly. As you probably noticed, SMF 2.0 was released on June 11, 2001 (which is why our forum went under some serious changes, and now the new member registration problem has been solved). This is the most recent update, and until a new update comes out, there's not much we can do to keep people's attention with constant changes.

In addition to this, I encourage all members to be more vocal about changes they'd like to see in the forum. The Suggestions board is a  wonderful place to anyone to post what they'd like to see.

Offline Stevie Leifheit

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #13 on: November 01, 2011, 09:40:20 AM »
On this subject, I feel similar to what Sam said earlier. In the past, we had a section somewhere (I can't remember exactly which board it was in) called Philosophy, and there were a multitude of brilliant threads in it, but I can't seem to find it anymore :-\ I'd love to see that resurrected.

If this is something everyone is interested in, I can make it happen.


In addition to this, I encourage all members to be more vocal about changes they'd like to see in the forum. The Suggestions board is a  wonderful place to anyone to post what they'd like to see.


I feel like the suggestion board should be moved to a more trafficked area of the forum, the retired board section is so far down there nobody really looks at it.

Do you think moving it to another area would help with the amount of suggestions we get? 
Weight training alongside parkour always benefits, it never takes away.


Quote from: Joe Brock
It's like you are some kind of APK Angel...not the girly kind...but the big "Sodom destroying" ones!!!

Offline Rafe

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2011, 11:50:39 AM »
The forums change because times change, Facebook has grabbed a big part of the parkour conversation. If i post a video in pics and vids it will get maybe a couple responses and 20-30 views same video posted on facebook gets 10-15 comments and 100 views.

The growth of the community as mentioned above is also huge, most of the people who were active posters 3 years ago are busy leading communities setting up gyms etc that or they dropped out. The topics of conversation that are important now, how to foster community, how to teach, building up grassroots events and competitions, this stuff that doesn't tend to be very productive to talk about online. Most of the important stuff from the past is in sticky somewhere and veterans are loathe to go over the same old points again for new comers or get dragged into the same tired debates.
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Offline Stevie Leifheit

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2011, 06:47:10 AM »
Thanks for all the your replies and thoughts guys!


Got any more?
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It's like you are some kind of APK Angel...not the girly kind...but the big "Sodom destroying" ones!!!

Offline Gabe Arnold

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2011, 01:06:05 PM »
1) Seek and destroy old/redundant threads. If there's 13 threads on how to do a wallrun, look through them, pick the 1-3 with the best info, and delete the others. Keeping the board streamlined is one of the best ways IMO to keep it good. Look at the Fitness section for instance, it's well run with active moderators, lots of stickies, etc.

2) Do we need the 'Freerunner Magazine' section anymore? I know my RISE story links are in there so I'd like those saved or moved to another board but we haven't had an issue of the mag in a year or more.

3) Sort out the child boards of the PK/FR clubs. Some of those haven't had a post in 2yrs...

4) Put the separate competition results boards all together as 'Results'.

5) Put the International, Spanish, and French boards all together as a Multicultural board or something.

6) Encourage well-known practitioners or leaders in the community to post more, even if it's just in a special Advanced section. People, newcomers especially, often come because they saw the moves their heroes did online. If they come on and see Frosti posted just yesterday giving advice or just clowning around, it's a pretty cool feeling.

7) CREATE AN EMBED FEATURE FOR YOUTUBE VIDEOS! If you can play videos straight through the forum it'd so much easier.

Those are the things I can think of off-hand.

Offline Ryan Sannar

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2011, 01:36:03 PM »
Possibly a chat feature. An option to link to facebook for events, as well as on someones name if they enable it.

Maybe keep the magazine, but we (community leaders) post every month a quick newsletter for our area underneath our own locked topic with another topic open for discussion below it. If anyone's down I can do a quick format and throw it up. You all can use it and it would be pretty easy to edit and etc.

IE:

Utah (Newsletter Topic) Locked with posts every month in HTML format regarding Utah
Utah Reporters/Bloggers: Open area for people to discuss and post news in the area.

If we do this for each state it would look cool.
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Offline Rafe

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2011, 02:32:16 PM »
1) Seek and destroy old/redundant threads. If there's 13 threads on how to do a wallrun, look through them, pick the 1-3 with the best info, and delete the others. Keeping the board streamlined is one of the best ways IMO to keep it good. Look at the Fitness section for instance, it's well run with active moderators, lots of stickies, etc.

2) Do we need the 'Freerunner Magazine' section anymore? I know my RISE story links are in there so I'd like those saved or moved to another board but we haven't had an issue of the mag in a year or more.

3) Sort out the child boards of the PK/FR clubs. Some of those haven't had a post in 2yrs...

4) Put the separate competition results boards all together as 'Results'.

5) Put the International, Spanish, and French boards all together as a Multicultural board or something.

6) Encourage well-known practitioners or leaders in the community to post more, even if it's just in a special Advanced section. People, newcomers especially, often come because they saw the moves their heroes did online. If they come on and see Frosti posted just yesterday giving advice or just clowning around, it's a pretty cool feeling.

7) CREATE AN EMBED FEATURE FOR YOUTUBE VIDEOS! If you can play videos straight through the forum it'd so much easier.

Those are the things I can think of off-hand.


I think these are excellent suggestions
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Offline Sparklefish

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Re: Forum Revival-Give us your thoughts
« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2011, 12:46:40 AM »
I agree with Rafe.  Gabe has great suggestions, as many of them as possible should be enacted.