On-line forum for Germans from Russia Researchers

Why are we using forums instead of email distribution lists?
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Author:  morbeus [ Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:05 am ]
Post subject:  Why are we using forums instead of email distribution lists?

Forums answer a number of problems with email:

  • Chains of emails about a topic rarely stay on topic. Forum topics that stray from the original topic can be encouraged to create a new topic or a topic can be split into two topics by the forum administrator.
  • People stray from topic in emails because its not easy to create a new email chain. In our forums you just click on the "New Topic" button and type in your question. Hopefully that will make multiple topic discussions much less prevalent.
  • Only the people on an email list will receive the request for help and can respond. Forum topics are open to Google so anyone in the world can respond to a request for help.
  • Email questions only exist on the recipient's computer or their mail server. Someone outside the recipient list can't search and find that question later. Forum topics are active and searchable as long as we want so even a year later someone could answer a question. Also the questions and answers continue to exist after the forum exchange is complete and will be available to anyone searching for an answer to the same question years down the road.
  • Spammers, Phishers and other bad types have made people very suspicious about email, especially emails from previously unknown persons. Our forum has none of that problem, we hide members email addresses and give them an anonymous "private message" inbox to discuss personal information and exchange emails. We also only register members who demonstrate they are real people interested in Black Sea Genealogy.
  • To handle the perceived disadvantage of forums that members have to check back repeatedly to see if their question has been answered our forum offers a "Subscription" service. To create a subscription, visit the forum or topic you would like to subscribe to and click the 'Subscribe' link located at the bottom of the page.

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