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If that were the case then why are people ie Brian noting issues with the forum. Either your walking around with rose tinted specs or your part of the problem
I think that if just a tiny majority feel that way then perhaps the problem is theirs and they need to adjust their expectations a bit.
Live with it, the forum is no longer what it used to be. We need to get it back to how it was,
It isn't rose-tinted spectacles it is an objective, easily-verifiable truth that almost all the threads on here are good-natured. Just because someone notes an issue doesn't mean it is necessarily valid.
Now Mark, just take a look back through this thread and see where it's starting to go wrong; to get personal and have an unwanted and unwarranted "edge" to it.....this is typical of a thread that's about to go off the rails. Ironic isn't it?
WizDoes that actually seem to be the case? Is there any way of telling? I know that I have said this in the past, but I simply don't recognise this forum as predominantly full of bad-tempered quarreling egos as could be implied from some of the comments in this thread.Mike
We've always had far more readers than posters but it's true, it is an increasing trend. A couple of contributing factors and there may be more which I don't know about. I can only go from what people tell me and my own thoughts....1) I know for a fact that a lot of people have either stopped visiting or posting because they're fed-up with every post they made turning into complete gargage or a bun-fight after a few posts and I think this is a major factor which must be addressed. I also beleive, and again I can only go by what a handful of disgruntled members have told me, that there is a feeling in the wider-world that this place has become a bit "cliquey" with most topics dominated by three or four prolific posters and that can be very intimidating for the less vociferous members. I think that's what people mean by "unfriendly".
2) Most of the content of the forum is viewable to guests and therefore there is no real incentive to register, log-in and get involved. Personally I think this is a bad thing but over the years it's the way it's gone through "public pressure" - I got howls of derision when I dared to make the glider boards "members only" and the same for a number of other areas.3) The stat's are contradictory. I monitor lot's of stat's around here, more than are available to the members, and the fact is that in terms of visits and hits, we are busier than ever and it's an upward trend.
Another fact is that we are way above the global average for "click through rates", that is the nukmber of clicks that the advertisements attract. The global average is 0.9% and we're running at an average 1.2% which is up there with the Amazon's of this world and the reason that's an important stat is that it proves we're getting "real hits" as opposed to search engines and spambots.Other stat's show that in all other areas we're performing well. For example what's called the "bounce rate" this is people who visit the site and immediately click the back button without looking at anything - we're running at 39% and the recognised global "target" is 30%. For reference a bad site will have a bounce rate around the 90% mark so that indicates again that people are interested in the content and this is backed-up by another stat which shows that people are spending an average 7.5 minutes on the site per visit which, again, in web-land is very good indeed and, while they're here, they're viewing an average 5.7 pages.
One curious stat and this may well be something related to the OP and that's where our visitors come from and how they got here. These are figures for the previous 12 months.....59.61% from Search Traffic of which around 90% is from Google10.07% from Referral Traffic - that is people have followed links from other sites and RCU is the biggest referal source.30.32% from Direct Traffic and that is where people have typed the URL, opened a bookmark etc.I say it's curious becuase the trend is towards more search traffic and less direct traffic. Two years ago this was more like 50/50 and I'm not certain yet what this indicates, if anything?
Anyway, I firmly believe that the way to encourage more people to post and get involved is to make them feel welcome and not make them reluctant to post for fear of ridicule or the whole thing becoming nonsense. I think I've quoted this line before but it's one that resonates with me time and time again .... this was a from a fairly prolific member of some 10 year's standing who stopped posting. "I've given up making posts and replying to posts recently becuase it seems that every time I do they get ridiculed and taken over by those who like the sound of their own voice far too much for my liking. I shall continue to visit but on a read only basis from now on". That sadens me and, if it's a general trend, worries me enormously becasue it goes against everything this place was ever about. There is of course a lot that we moderators can do to control things but then it can seem oppressive. I would much rather the membership moderate itself on that score.
Let me give another example of what I consider poor form - we recently saw a post from a new member, in fact it was his first post. He asked a question and yes, it was a topic we've debated many times before around here BUT the first response was "Oh god not that old chesnut again ....blah blah blah". Funny but the member that asked the question hasn't posted again but visits regularly. Does that paint a picture I wonder?
Another factor is complexity. What we have here is a vast database of modelling topics and like all databases it needs some organisation. Over the years as more and more disciplines and technologies have emerged we've had to adapt and grow but I do understand that in doing so the structure around here can look daunting and difficult to navigate for a newcomer. It's something I'm giving a lot of thought to and looking at perhaps some kind of navigation page. Jury's out on that one but I do recognise it as a potential issue.And another factor to put into the melting pot - A lot of the regulars have bookmarked their "favorite" sections and tend to just go there and not visit the main pages to see what else is going on. A few have quite openly stated that, and I quote, "I can't be bothered to trawl through other sections" and "I never visit the main page". Well, I think personaly that while it's understandable to a degree, it's also a very selfish approach which may be a reason for some topics to be dominated by just a few members.
Anyway, this is interesting discussion and let's just hope it doesn't degenerate!
wiz, unclear as to what you're "no"ing yer
i would of thought a page with adverts right to the bottom would be welcome
WizDon't see that anybody could disagree with any of that - and I like the idea of a newsletterMike
5) And just to put your mind at rest, most reasonable and decent members will not notice any difference in the moderation policy at all. But those who seek to be disruptive and deliberately aggressive most surely will....oh and one more thing. I'm going to start publishing a quarterly newsletter to all members via the email. This will include news, views and announcements - hopefully I can make it interesting too! I think this might help in some small way to engender a "community feel" back into RCMF.
There is all this talk of friendly and unfriendly.I think that some of it is down to the way the English is used. You can answer a comment but how you phrase the answer defines whether it is unfriendly or not. Sometimes if you keep very close to the point it can seem unfriendly, yet with a few more words the same sentence can seem just the opposite.Can I ask all who post to stand back and look at exactly what they have written and then ask themselves whether they would like that style back to them if they had asked a question etc. Doing that and adding maybe a few words can make all the difference.Please think about it.
This can also be compounded by how articulate and literate someone might be. If someone is used to speaking in basic English, and doesn't have a very broad vocabulary, it's hardly likely their written English will be any better; and likely be considerably worse. This could make someone appear too direct or even unfriendly. Just a thought.
Are we actually asking the right question?I still clas myself as a relative newcomer with less than a year under my belt. yes there are some posts where the poster is so far up their own backside that it beggars belief, but surely we all know to take them with a pinch of salt.At the time of writing this, there are 49 members online, but 74 guests. Surely the question is why are we not converting guests to members??If there are more guests than members online then there are always going to be more reads than posts.Although I disagree with much of the rhetoric posted on here, and sometimes struggle not to retort, the BIG BIG point in favour of this forum is that whenever you need help or advice it is given freely and quickly.Overall this is a very friendly place to be, with lots of support on hand, both modelling and otherwise. The 'Leg Ampuation' thread in the pub (or what used to be) proves this without a shadow of a doubt. And all from folks most of whom I've never met, but just share a hobby with.Let other forums boast about massive growth, that really means sod all. In spite of the criticisms about cliqueyness and all the other niggles, this is no more than a reflection of life anyway, this is still a terrific forum.But let's turn some of the guests into members, if only to find out why THEY keep returning!
Are we actually asking the right question?I still clas myself as a relative newcomer with less than a year under my belt. yes there are some posts where the poster is so far up their own backside that it beggars belief, but surely we all know to take them with a pinch of salt.At the time of writing this, there are 49 members online, but 74 guests. Surely the question is why are we not converting guests to members??If there are more guests than members online then there are always going to be more reads than postsBut let's turn some of the guests into members, if only to find out why THEY keep returning!
Most of those guests will Probbably be bots or spiders and not humans.Tom
Most of those guests will Probbably be bots or spiders and not humans.
Good guess but we actually exclude those and capture them separately. Usually there are 100+ bots on here!