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Do we need to assign specific threads according to countries

Travel Forums System Talk Do we need to assign specific threads according to countries

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1. Posted by cikusang (Respected Member 1361 posts) 11y

Hi all,

I found the threads in this forum are in a mess. For instance, in Europe's room, we'll find London's or Paris's or other cities jumbled up in Europe's room...

I think the assignation of threads according to each country would help us a lot, and I know this isn't an easy task for administrators to do that...too many new threads popping up everyday!

That's just my suggestion, maybe some of you are on the same boat with me.

Looking for comments and happy to get criticised.;)

Thanks for your attention,

2. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 11y

Hi Lee,

It's not a bad idea, but there is a reason we have stayed away from it (of course) :)

Breaking a forum down into separate forums per country or region is the most popular way to do this on other forums, but in that case we'd end up with 230 odd forums which isn't managable and even more confusing if anything.... there are some forums that do this but generally none of them offer a very clear overview (or are easy to use and fast) and that is one thing which we've put as a top priority (on any TP page).

Now, if you mean more a type of 'sorting' by country, that could be an option, but then the thread would have to be 'assigned' to a country (which country specific ones often are mind you due to the travel help drop down box option when starting a new thread). The problem comes when a post covers several countries or cities (as most posts usually do) because then duplicate posts start appearing more and more and that means more work deleting these :) It is the best option though between sorting and breaking down the forum further and one which I am toying around with right now for a part of the site ....

I think breaking down per city is next to impossible unless every city gets the traffic to justify it having it's own space and then we're talking at least a 100 fold increase in traffic to consider this.

Either way, a system to sort the forums on a per country basis (or otherwise) would all have to be automatic and not require an admin person to assign it as that would just not be doable with the amount of threads started.

I would be happy to hear other members thoughts on this though, it's a good idea but a little tough to implement well


3. Posted by daveh (Travel Guru 1027 posts) 11y

I think using the search facility the forum has will probably bring up most of the threads on a specific country anyway. It won't take too long to filter through the ones that aren't too specific to the information you want.

4. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 11y

Maybe in certain specific instances where traffic justifies it, they could be split a bit - For example, Europe has maybe 4 fairly natural splits you could use (i.e. Uk and Ireland, Scandinavia, W Euro, E Euro). And you could just pull one bit i.e. Uk & Ureland out of it instead of splitting it into 4. But there's probably very few places which have enough traffic to justify a major shake up/split at this point.

5. Posted by cikusang (Respected Member 1361 posts) 11y

I witness a forum - an online investment program which emphasizes on interactions through forum too, began to sort out the previous threads and stops any new threads from proposing in; many members are happy with the latest approach - the admin people even admitted that with quite a number of stuffs are hardly to manage a great mass of posts every second!!! (imagine how hard it is)
So, they prompted their members that NO MORE NEW THREADS are allowed unless the threads are really that VITAL and NECESSARY.

I studied this forum and flipping through thread by thread - which i was surprised most of the threads are redundant!!! (Wasting the space for storage)Some even copied the title of the previous thread and pasted it on the new thread - this is irresponsible and intolerable!

Another suggestion is: with some rooms spared for specific regional helpers. Say if UK helpers would respond only for posts dealing with UK ONLY in the 'UK helpers room'; this is what i saw in the above mentioned program: a room specifically for ticketing; another room for FAQ; another room for "Words from Admin" or "IT" or "CEO"...
at least, the admin people would concentrate their consultation in their rooms; the message is clear and systematic. Of course there are many rooms for other members to openly posting their threads ( but now that program stopped the increasing new threads) and I think this would save the admin's work! Make it focus and efficient.

(Imagine the UK helper will advise on China or India - this will add more question marks on the new members' heads. A solution (without awaring its feasibility) is the helpers declare their service FIRST in which region they would be focusing on. If that particular helper is experienced in UK and France, then he/she would be consulting the room (with relevant threads) labelled 'UK' and also the room 'France' at his/her convenience.

Hope this will make things clearer,

6. Posted by GregW (Travel Guru 2635 posts) 11y

I usually only read North America, South America and Africa travel forums, as those are the only ones I can assist on. For those, there is no need for a split.

I can see from the volume of traffic that perhaps Asia and Europe should be split to bring them more in line with the size of the other forums. Spliting in 4 might be a bit much, but perhaps a two parter for Europe (East and West) and a two parter for Asia (maybe South Asia (India, Thailand, etc.) and Northern Asia (China, Japan, Russia, etc.)). Of course, given that I don't read them, perhaps someone who does would have a better idea on a split.


7. Posted by Brendan (Respected Member 1824 posts) 11y

I agree with Sam.

Once you start getting more and more detailed the more complicated things become. Plus, as travelling trends change the admins would then have to re-focus the forums to represent the most popular destinations. This in itself would cause confusion with members, admins and pretty much everyone else.

However, I do agree that deciding what area to post a question can at times be difficult. I think this mostly stems from the fact most people are not completely sure what continent a country resides.

For example, if one thinks in a striclty geo-political stance, they may not include Mexico in "North America". And would create a new area called "Central America" to split off the "inconsequential countries". But anyone thinking in a strictly geographical stance would not only include Mexico in with North America, but also: The Bahamas, Bermuda, Cuba, Haiti, Jamaica, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, Costa Rica and Panama.

North America is only one of areas hard to "label". Another being "The Middle East", do you count it on it's own or keep it with the res of Asia.

If it was me making the decisions I would go with a completly geographical serpation of countries. This way it can not be disputed and people only have to learn from geography and own a map to find out where to post anything

8. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 11y

I think there's a couple of things that need additional consideration. I have been a member on several forums (non travel) where it is indeed extremely annoying when people start threads that are the same as others. Travelling however, by its very personal nature and experience, allows for literally thousands of threads which can be about the same place but all seen from a different point of view with different travellers wanting something different. Things also change continuously which makes new threads more justifiable than in other topic areas. Having said that, we don't really want tons of duplicate threads started and if it's the same user starting them, they are usually deleted.

I just checked the europe forum as an example and if you choose the maximum amount of threads per page (35), the threads on the front page go back three days in terms of last post. That doesn't really warrant a split yet I feel, but as things grow I could certainly see Europe being broken down. I know Pete's pretty focused on not increasing the amount of forums too much though so you'd have to convince him especially

Lee, your idea about the help and helpers is a good one and actually already in place.... as a user starting a new thread, I can select the country it is about. That will send all travel helpers for that country only an email letting them know there is a thread about a country they have volunteered for. It's one of the main reasons a lot of threads get quick responses from people that know a lot about that country really. UK travel helpers wouldn't get this notification for a china post or vice versa. It's a bit of a stroke of genius if you ask me and it wasn't even my idea It's also something which is a lot harder on other sites since most sites use forum software that is an add on package whereas for TP both the helper and forum features were coded by Pete which makes it a lot easier to tie in together.

Even splitting geographically can be tough actually. We had a post about Turkey lately... is it Asia or Europe for example??? Tough stuff!

9. Posted by Brendan (Respected Member 1824 posts) 11y

Quoting Sam I Am

Even splitting geographically can be tough actually. We had a post about Turkey lately... is it Asia or Europe for example??? Tough stuff!

Good point

10. Posted by cikusang (Respected Member 1361 posts) 11y

Thanks for those comments...Ya, Turkey is the toughest one and even some part of Russia...this would bring me back to the point: politic.:(

Anyway, I know there are a few who are really 'quick' in responses..., at least. (got my survey proven that fact!haha)

Thanks again.