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    Feedback from a newby (<1 week).

    This is a great site, has some excellent tutorials, formatting features, wonderfull galleries, and REALLY nice people...

    but...

    I have to say I am finding the boards kind of dead - usually only half a dozen people including moderators lurking.

    Does anybody have any suggestions for boosting the hit rate on the forums? I know from hanging out at dpreview that there are plenty of forum posters with an interest in Retouching out there.

    How do we pull them over here? I have mentioned this site in apost there, as have Danny and Clausiam.

    Any other good ideas?

    Respectfully
    Toad

  • #2
    hmmm...I never really thought of these boards as dead. It has been a little slow the past few weeks...people busy, etc... It will pick back up eventually.

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    • #3
      Thanks for the info - just my luck to start on a slow week.



      I hope nobody is offended by my comment.

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      • #4
        Toad, try jumping in on the discussion already going on in some threads. A lot of the posting goes on in threads that have been going for months. I'm sure you have some interesting opinions and experience to add to ongoing discussions!

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        • #5
          I've just assumed (silly me...) that it's that last lull of the summer when everyone is trying to take advantage of whatever good weather is left.

          I know my posting has slowed down this summer from what it was over the winter, but that's just because I've been able to get out and do things instead of being forced inside by winter weather. (I actually managed to go to dinner a football game last night and barely had time to just check my mail before going to bed).

          Well, that plus I had to go back to (ugh!) work instead of spending much time here on my computer.

          Another thing is that there's soooooo much info on the boards already that maybe there are a lot of questions that people are finding answers to without having to ask at this point...

          Plus, the holiday season is zooming right up there (don't forget the RP holiday donation drive coming up... ) and I've noticed a lot more people out shopping and such lately.

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          • #6
            For the amount of members we have, it is slow. But I think there is only a small percentage of members who post routinely. It won't be long until we start getting more posts per day, due to the weather conditions. In the meantime, follow CJ's advice. Check out the older threads. There are a lot of oldies that are ripe for renewed discussions.

            Ed

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            • #7
              We ARE approaching 1000 members, but like any site, only about 10-15% really participate on a consistent basis. I have not been too active this week due to a massive web design project I was doing for my brother's e-zine...and will continue to be doing for some time! (for some reason I always volunteer for these things...and they balloon into large scale monstrosities! )

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              • #8
                Hmm.

                That's good - generated 5+ more mesages - so I will say something even more contraversial to generate more messages:

                I tend to think of myself as kind of a pathetic loser - in that I look to the forums as a "social" experience and peripherally am "artistic" experience.

                Realistically, don't most of us want to have 5+ meseages to respond to rather than maybe 2?

                Seriously - am I way off base? I would like to have this exceptional forum get 2 million+ hits per day...

                No discussion?

                Flame suit on...
                Toad

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                • #9
                  Toad:

                  As one who skips back and forth among a couple forums, and who clicks "LAST 24 HOURS" at this site pretty often, I would agree there's are not many lively threads happening compared to other places. Sure, one could post to a thread that's been inactive a time and stir the ashes a bit, but (yawn...)

                  Why is it slow? I can't say. Sure can't be for lack quality content or because mean and unsupportive folks hang out here.

                  The weather? The holidays are coming up? End of summer? Hmmm... it's Sunday a.m. I'da thunk there would have been a decent amount of activity the past 24 hrs. Let's see: Does 14 posts (past 24 hrs) seem like a lot? Doesn't to me. Not with a membership in the neighborhood of 1K. Of those 14, 5 are for threads in the Salon. But over 1/3 of the activity for the site on a Saturday is in the Salon? (No offense to those active in the Salon.)

                  Maybe it's the nature of this segment of the industry / hobby. It's not as though there are daily technical breakthroughs in how to clone. The site doesn't focus much on "current industry events" or new hardware reviews, which are probably better left to sites that specialize in that sort of thing. Given the specialized nature of this niche, perhaps there should not be a high traffic expecation.

                  It would be interesting to crunch the behind-the-scenes numbers regardng membership, posting frequency, forum participation, affects of seasons, the Superbowl and all that kind of stuff.
                  Don't get me wrong: I enjoy engaging DJ, Jak, Greg, Ed, Jeanie and all the regulars. Like Toad, I would also like to see more activity in the non-social forums.

                  Ya wanna know what I REALLY think? (Well, I'm gonna tell you anyway.) I think I'm going to bed. Falling asleep in church is embarrassing!

                  eya all later.

                  Danny

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                  • #10
                    Weekends are always slow...and remember that school just started back in many places. People who once had the time to indulge in an online forum are now packing lunch boxes and going to PTA meetings...(thankfully I don't have to worry about these things...yet!).

                    I think most sites go through a lull once the "newness" wears off. RetouchPro has only been around for a year...and already is approaching 1000 members. It takes time to build a site up. Posting links in other forums is a great way to get new people here...because as far as I know, Doug is not advertising on cable TV yet! I found Retouch from a link in a newsgroup for instance.

                    Another thing to do is to try and always post a few comments whenever you get one in one of your threads. I have noticed a few times where someone will post 5-10 images in the gallery, get a few responses. but then never respond...or if they do respond, they do not take the time to post comments about any images other than their own. This does not happen very often but has a few times...

                    Also...as Doug has pointed out many times, try to create new threads for new topics within existing threads. This gets new discussions going...don't be afraid of that "New Thread" button! actually...we are all guilty of that one...

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                    • #11
                      Although it is a little too slow lately, I actually enjoy the smaller group. People can get lost in the crowd on bigger sites. Plus they get mobbed with spam and one word replies and threads that get way off base. It gets old searching through millions of messages to find one piece of relevant information.

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                      • #12
                        Don't forget that a number of posts per day that used to appear here are now appearing over in the new Challenge area of the Gallery and don't show up as 'new posts'.
                        Learn by teaching
                        Take responsibility for learning

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                        • #13
                          Flame suit on...
                          Ummmm..... No one here at RP owns a flame thrower....

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                          • #14
                            Jak:
                            You are correct, and I personally feel that's one of the reasons we haven't 'caught on' like other sites. And, if that is the case, I couldn't be happier about it.

                            99% of the internet is built around profit, controversy, and conflict, and we're a good-sized portion of the remaining 1%.

                            Toad:
                            One of the things people overlook is that, besides the nearly 1000 registered users and the 100 or so that post regularly, is that we get over 16,000 unique visitors per month. They come, get what they need (or don't), and leave, without registering or actively participating.

                            I get lots of email with questions and comments from people that simply won't participate in forums, for their own reasons. While for many the forums are what this site is about, it's actually only one of many areas.

                            Plus we do have a limited niche, and some might feel we've already covered. I don't, but I can see how some might.

                            Bottom line is that it's up to each individual to form what they want. The vast majority are reactive, not proactive, at least in this context, so step up and start a thread about what you want to discuss.
                            Last edited by Doug Nelson; 10-06-2002, 10:13 AM.
                            Learn by teaching
                            Take responsibility for learning

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                            • #15
                              Hi all!

                              Large forums can be nice but a person can also get bogged down with to many posts. Try missing a few days at Adobe and you will be buried with post that you probably wont have time to read. I really like the friendly people and the great threads here. Bigger is not always better.

                              Bob

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