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Author Topic: How to make your own forum  (Read 7655 times)

Scott5114

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Re: What if this forum was on a phpBB or VBulletin platform and not SMF?
« Reply #25 on: March 01, 2021, 11:55:10 PM »

Quote
What if this forum was on a phpBB or VBulletin platform and not SMF?

Then the admin panel would look different, some of the features would be different, and the BBCode would be slightly different. Quotes being in italic or not are an option that can be done in the theme stylesheet. We could do that here if we wanted; it's not really tied to a software package. The default SMF theme, which I forked to make the Button Copy theme, didn't use italics, and I simply didn't change it when making the new theme. (I was too busy punching reflectors out of the "U" in "FORUM", I guess.)

phpBB is also free. The main reason we use SMF instead is because that's what Cody (V'Ger) picked, and we didn't change software after he was removed. I have moderated a phpBB forum as well, and it's not really that different.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2021, 12:55:24 AM by Scott5114 »
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tolbs17

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Re: What if this forum was on a phpBB or VBulletin platform and not SMF?
« Reply #26 on: March 02, 2021, 12:39:45 AM »

Then the admin panel would look different, some of the features would be different, and the BBCode would be slightly different. Quotes being in italic or not are an option that can be done in the theme stylesheet. We could do that here if we wanted; it's not really tied to a software package. The default SMF theme, which I forked to make the Button Copy theme, didn't use italics, and I simply didn't change it when making the new theme. (I was too busy punching reflectors out of the "U" in "FORUM", I guess.)

phpBB is also free. The main reason we use SMF instead is because that's what Cody (V'Ger) picked, and we didn't change software after he was removed. I have moderated a phpBB forum as well, and it's not really that different.
And I'm guessing the font would be in Trebuchet MS. Most of the forums I have been on were using phpBB, but now they are getting updated so that's great but it's not like I care really. A forum is a forum. Whatever works the best, works. Is city-data like this?
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Scott5114

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #27 on: March 02, 2021, 12:53:52 AM »

Nah, I probably would have set it to font-family:sans-serif; if it wasn't already. Although I like Trebuchet, Linux doesn't have it installed by default, to say nothing of the various phones out there (not that any of those existed when I made Button Copy). It's nicer to use the browser's font settings so people can change them to whatever they like.

I have no idea what city-data is.
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webny99

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #28 on: March 02, 2021, 07:53:21 AM »

kphoger

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #29 on: March 02, 2021, 09:49:49 AM »

I wanna create my own forum and I need help.

NO i don't want to make my own forum as I have no money and would probably be pointless.

Looks like we helped.  Great job, everyone!      :clap:   :cheers:   :clap:
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #30 on: March 02, 2021, 09:54:51 AM »


We set our own rules here, we handle users however we want, and we're not beholden to the "almighty gods" that are the Reddit admins.

Wait, Alex isn't an almighty god? I've never met him in person, so if anyone who has could clear up the issue of his divinity for me, it would be much appreciated.

Alex is more of a demigod.  That's kind of like a less-Kabbalistic Demi Moore, but more famous than Demi Schuurs.
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #31 on: March 02, 2021, 09:59:23 AM »

I have thought about a hypothetical "list of forum members, ranked" that I would never actually create because everyone would complain about his or her position in the list. However, I would place TheAlan360 and Ken Jennings above Alex.
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2021, 10:23:39 AM »

I have thought about a hypothetical "list of forum members, ranked" that I would never actually create because everyone would complain about his or her position in the list. However, I would place TheAlan360 and Ken Jennings above Alex.
I'll place Ethanman62187 up there too
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Mr. Matté

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #33 on: March 02, 2021, 03:28:03 PM »

However, I would place ... Ken Jennings above Alex.

How about compared to Art Fleming? Or Pat Sajak's one-off episode in 1997?
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Scott5114

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #34 on: March 02, 2021, 03:51:23 PM »

I have thought about a hypothetical "list of forum members, ranked" that I would never actually create because everyone would complain about his or her position in the list. However, I would place TheAlan360 and Ken Jennings above Alex.

You're right, of course. Alex may be able to do whatever he pleases as concerns this forum, but he's never had the authority to rule a Final Jeopardy! question right or wrong.
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JoePCool14

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #35 on: March 02, 2021, 05:28:46 PM »

We set our own rules here, we handle users however we want, and we're not beholden to the "almighty gods" that are the Reddit admins.

Wait, Alex isn't an almighty god? I've never met him in person, so if anyone who has could clear up the issue of his divinity for me, it would be much appreciated.

As long as he's not a Reddit admin!
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jeffandnicole

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #36 on: March 02, 2021, 05:48:33 PM »

Most web forums run as a PHP application that uses a MySQL database (or a compatible DBMS like MariaDB). Usually the workflow will be something like ensuring PHP and MySQL are running the required versions, create a MySQL user for the forum to interface with the database, then upload the forum software package to the server, unzip it, set the file permissions as appropriate (assuming you're running a Linux server, which why wouldn't you), then run the software package's installer (which will ask you, among other things, details about how to access the database using the user account you just created for it).

If the thought in your head after reading that is not "Oh, that seems simple enough", I would recommend researching each step individually. It is not a difficult process to go through if you're familiar with the underlying technologies. If you're not, I'd suggest setting up Apache and MySQL on your computer as a test system and spending a weekend or two screwing around learning how they work before spending the money to secure hosting and find out you have no interest in proceeding further.

Additionally: are you sure you want to create your own forum? It is no fun at all to go through the trouble of painstakingly setting up a forum and have nobody show up. This forum was successful because AARoads was already an established website (thereby ensuring that it comes up highly-ranked in search engines) and there was latent demand (MTR sucked and people wanted to move somewhere else, but nobody had stepped forward to provide that space yet). To create a successful forum, you need a clear topic of interest that would bring everyone together (on AARoads, that's roads) and a compelling reason to engage in that forum (such as there being no existing place to discuss the subject topic, or one that currently exists and is flawed).

If you're just curious how forums work and what it is like to be on the admin side, you can do most of that simply by installing a forum on Apache as described above and tinker with it knowing that it is just on a test site on your computer, and not feel bad if nobody wants to actually post on it.
Didn't read this cause I was at school, and NO i don't want to make my own forum as I have no money and would probably be pointless. Maybe I should start of making my own website if anything. I'm not a technician

Geocities would've been right up your alley, if you weren't 20 years too late.

Other ISPs allowed you to have personal websites, many of which made use of the little used tilde ~ key.

Most ISPs did away with this ability several years ago; too many people abandoned their projects with the likes of Facebook and such, and it was taking up too much server space.



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hbelkins

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #37 on: March 02, 2021, 10:52:59 PM »

too few rules and mods/admins banning people.

That's actually a feature, not a bug -- and what I miss most about misc.transport.road. You had the ability to silence anyone you wanted in your own feed through the use of killfiles. Others were free to engage or not if they wished.

We set our own rules here, we handle users however we want, and we're not beholden to the "almighty gods" that are the Reddit admins.

No, "we" don't make our own rules here and "we" don't handle users however "we" want. I have never been a part of any "we" that ever did any of those things, and since I don't see an admin tag by your name, I feel safe in saying you have never been part of that "we" either. A select group of moderators -- the "almighty gods" that are the AA Roads admins -- set the rules, make decisions on post deletions and warnings and bans and thread locks, and many of those decisions seem to be made on the basis of personal beliefs or hostility toward specific individuals. We're beholden to them.
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Scott5114

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #38 on: March 03, 2021, 12:15:34 AM »

Social media sites have completely computer-automated moderation now, though. Even if you disagree with the admins here, at least you can talk to the person that made the decision, and there's a chance we'll change our minds. At Facebook you may as well scream at a brick wall.
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1995hoo

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #39 on: March 03, 2021, 07:33:58 AM »

You can partially silence a user here if you want by using the ignore list in your profile. It’s not perfect because you’ll still see the ignored user's comments when others quote them, of course. I don’t bother with the feature for precisely that reason.
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JoePCool14

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #40 on: March 03, 2021, 07:44:57 AM »

We set our own rules here, we handle users however we want, and we're not beholden to the "almighty gods" that are the Reddit admins.

No, "we" don't make our own rules here and "we" don't handle users however "we" want. I have never been a part of any "we" that ever did any of those things, and since I don't see an admin tag by your name, I feel safe in saying you have never been part of that "we" either. A select group of moderators -- the "almighty gods" that are the AA Roads admins -- set the rules, make decisions on post deletions and warnings and bans and thread locks, and many of those decisions seem to be made on the basis of personal beliefs or hostility toward specific individuals. We're beholden to them.

That's right, but at least it's just our admins and mods who make the rules, not some admins watching over an entire network of subreddits.

Also, Scott's point is valid. If something goes wrong on Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube, you have essentially no way of contacting an actual human to fix your issues. Things aren't necessarily perfect, but it's obviously good enough, otherwise there would be a mass exodus to a new road forum.
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #41 on: March 03, 2021, 12:37:27 PM »

it's obviously good enough, otherwise there would be a mass exodus to a new road forum.
Yeah, someone even tried to start one because he didn't like a staff member here, but it never really took off, got hacked a few months later, and died a quiet death.

Even earlier, V'ger also tried to spin off another forum after the incident (using a database backup he took, too!), but that lasted only a couple days.
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #42 on: March 03, 2021, 06:52:09 PM »

too few rules and mods/admins banning people.

That's actually a feature, not a bug -- and what I miss most about misc.transport.road. You had the ability to silence anyone you wanted in your own feed through the use of killfiles. Others were free to engage or not if they wished.

We set our own rules here, we handle users however we want, and we're not beholden to the "almighty gods" that are the Reddit admins.

No, "we" don't make our own rules here and "we" don't handle users however "we" want. I have never been a part of any "we" that ever did any of those things, and since I don't see an admin tag by your name, I feel safe in saying you have never been part of that "we" either. A select group of moderators -- the "almighty gods" that are the AA Roads admins -- set the rules, make decisions on post deletions and warnings and bans and thread locks, and many of those decisions seem to be made on the basis of personal beliefs or hostility toward specific individuals. We're beholden to them.
The vast majority of posts are unedited. Threads get locked or moved to the killfile if they devolve into hostility or personal attacks, or politics. We let quite a lot go.

webny99

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #43 on: March 03, 2021, 10:03:32 PM »

I'm actually interested what determines whether a thread gets moved to the killfile as opposed to being locked.

Scott5114

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #44 on: March 03, 2021, 10:25:30 PM »

The judgement of whichever moderator stumbles upon the post first has a lot to do with it. There isn't like a flowchart or anything that we all follow, we each enforce the rules that are publicly available to the users and simply try to do what we feel is right under the circumstances. I tend to be on the stricter end; other moderators are often more lax.

My personal philosophy when it comes to when to kill individual posts (usually by hiding them from public view, but occasionally outright deleting them if they were contentless enough that there is no plausible need to refer to them) rather than to lock a thread is if there is any hope that a meaningful, interesting conversation could theoretically be had should the bad posts be excised. If it's possible to keep a discussion going (for example, if there's a good conversation going on a topic and a noxious side discussion starts), then I kill the bad posts and leave the thread going. If the whole thread is noxious (e.g. if it started as a bad trolling attempt, or there is no way to continue with it while following the forum rules, or the users insist on relitigating whatever issue was discussed in the killed posts), then a lock is warranted.

Generally I won't kill an entire thread, unless being public and locked makes it a likely source of disruption elsewhere. For example, if someone were to make a thread titled "webny99 sucks!" filled with insults, there is really no good reason to leave it public, since it serves no purpose other than to try to make you upset, and if it succeeds it could cause you to escalate the matter when you encounter that user in another thread. Another example of a thread I would hide is if a thread reflects badly on the community, e.g. they're racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. It is better to hide those sorts of threads to prevent undue harm to any members that fall in the class it was directed at reading it.

In general, though, we have no hard and fast rules about when to do what, so a thread I might leave in place might be a thread that Steve would hide, or vice versa.
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webny99

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #45 on: March 03, 2021, 11:19:33 PM »

The judgement of whichever moderator stumbles upon the post first has a lot to do with it. There isn't like a flowchart or anything that we all follow, we each enforce the rules that are publicly available to the users and simply try to do what we feel is right under the circumstances.
...

In general, though, we have no hard and fast rules about when to do what, so a thread I might leave in place might be a thread that Steve would hide, or vice versa.

Thanks! As someone who spends more than my fair share of time here, I found that really interesting and think it's a good thing when the mods and admin are free to share stuff like this. Hopefully other users feel the same way.

This didn't occur to me until this very moment, but one thing I think might be valuable is a post or notification of some sort from the moderator when part of a discussion is removed. I get that it might not be desirable to draw attention to removed content, but on a couple occasions I've had posts just disappear (usually due to me replying to something egregious, rather than initiating it... at least so I like to think) and been confused by it, so I'd find a simple "Inappropriate discussion removed" or something similar helpful and informative.

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #46 on: March 03, 2021, 11:52:53 PM »

The judgement of whichever moderator stumbles upon the post first has a lot to do with it. There isn't like a flowchart or anything that we all follow, we each enforce the rules that are publicly available to the users and simply try to do what we feel is right under the circumstances.
...

In general, though, we have no hard and fast rules about when to do what, so a thread I might leave in place might be a thread that Steve would hide, or vice versa.

Thanks! As someone who spends more than my fair share of time here, I found that really interesting and think it's a good thing when the mods and admin are free to share stuff like this. Hopefully other users feel the same way.

This didn't occur to me until this very moment, but one thing I think might be valuable is a post or notification of some sort from the moderator when part of a discussion is removed. I get that it might not be desirable to draw attention to removed content, but on a couple occasions I've had posts just disappear (usually due to me replying to something egregious, rather than initiating it... at least so I like to think) and been confused by it, so I'd find a simple "Inappropriate discussion removed" or something similar helpful and informative.
I'll take the blame for having the philosophy of being quiet about it.

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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #47 on: March 04, 2021, 07:37:12 AM »

.... For example, if someone were to make a thread titled "webny99 sucks!" filled with insults, there is really no good reason to leave it public, since it serves no purpose other than to try to make you upset, and if it succeeds it could cause you to escalate the matter when you encounter that user in another thread. ....

Marf may be banned, but he lives on in memory!
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #48 on: March 04, 2021, 07:44:18 AM »

.... For example, if someone were to make a thread titled "webny99 sucks!" filled with insults, there is really no good reason to leave it public, since it serves no purpose other than to try to make you upset, and if it succeeds it could cause you to escalate the matter when you encounter that user in another thread. ....

Marf may be banned, but he lives on in memory!
And I made about US71 becoming a mod again and I didn't get in trouble
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Re: How to make your own forum
« Reply #49 on: March 04, 2021, 07:47:30 AM »

.... For example, if someone were to make a thread titled "webny99 sucks!" filled with insults, there is really no good reason to leave it public, since it serves no purpose other than to try to make you upset, and if it succeeds it could cause you to escalate the matter when you encounter that user in another thread. ....

Marf may be banned, but he lives on in memory!
And I made about US71 becoming a mod again and I didn't get in trouble

US 71 should become a mod again. I was the one who pointed out the problem with what he posted, and I didn't think it was worthy of desysopping (mainly since it was a comment that had nothing to do with moderation).
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