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The Brickset Forum : A discussion. What would make you engage more?
You'll probably be aware that the future of the Brickset Forum is being discussed at present. It is becoming economically unviable for Huw to keep it running, in part due to the relatively low numbers of people using it. Options being considered are:
- It remains as it is if Huw can negotiate a sufficiently large reduction in running costs from his host.
- The forum closes and we, as a community, relocate elsewhere. To this end, there has been a group formed to look at alternatives - other forums, Discord, Facebook etc
It strikes me that the root cause is a lack of engagement. As I write this, there are three registered users (including me), plus 12 guests looking at the forum. Back when I joined Brickset about 12 years ago, it was a thriving community with many users talking about a variety of subjects at all times of the day and all times of the week.
So in order for it to be sensible for either of the above options to be pursued, there has to be an engaged audience. There's not much point in a group of us setting up a new community elsewhere if only five people are going to use it, and similarly, I can sympathise with Huw deciding to pull the plug here - why keep it going if there's no demand?
So to get to the root of the problem, what would make you use - and value - the forum more? I appreciate that I'm only going to get answers from people who are already here, whereas the most useful responses would be from those that were active members, but have drifted away. So to that end, I'm willing to take wild speculation as to why people might have left.
One thing that stands out for me is the proliferation of automatically generated threads that come from the main site articles - they fill up the forum and hardly ever get any responses, as anybody wanting to comment on the topic will do so on the main site. I'd like to see these removed, and retain the forum for 'user generated content' only.
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