In pork I trust
- Aug 28, 2005
- Stamford Bridge
I was thinking about games' participation and how we are basically a generation stuck with the technology of our prime time. Yes, we have debates and we can share information/links and create insider community relationships, but what is the comparative advantage of a forum as opposed to other types of media.
Forums are a different beast from most social media, in that here we have a small yet somewhat consistent group of regulars who comment. It is a smaller tighter-knit community than something random like Facebook. Facebook is what, comments by random people you don't know? You can create custom groups and invite whoever you want there, but from my experience at least, those either tend to blow up to include lots of randos or don't get used and die. The other difference is that on facebook you can see most people's real names, whereas here we are hidden behind our handles and avatars.
Discord? Yeah, you can build up a community there. Discord seems to basically be IRC on steroids. It's designed for more in-the-moment fly-by sort of chatter though, instead of more indepth conversations that last weeks or longer.
Reddit? Most subreddits have so many users that you rarely run into people you know, unless you stick to fairly niche subreddits, which most people don't. The way upvotes work also doesn't lend itself very well to debate-like conversations. The most upvoted stuff ends up going to the top, it's not displayed chronologically. So you end up getting a completely different user experience from a forum.
Live messenger and zoom? None of my friends love video chat, we prefer chatting on our keyboards and all that jazz. We've played games like that, out of necessity, due to lockdowns.. but aside from that, what sort of community can be built in zoom? These approaches seem to work better at the office, for business meetings, etc.[/quote]
What is so unique about forums?
They are basically a leftover of the world of Bulletin Board Systems that was so popular in the 80s and 90s. Forums made up a big part of almost every BBS and they were structured essentially the same way modern forums are.
Whereas reddit is more designed to be a place where members of a community can find community-related information quickly (since popular posts float to the top).. forums are more designed for similar communities to exchange ideas and have conversations with each other in a more back and forth method.
Is there anything that will bring the new (and, well, current) generations to foruming as a media? Games or otherwise?
Yes, the stupid puritan American hate of breasts and nipples needs to be revisited and burned to the ground.
Aside from that, you'd be surprised how many niche communities exist out there with their own forums.