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Lack of interest Don't show 'users viewing a thread', but *replying* to a thread

Grover

Well-known member
#1
I just had this idea popping up:

I was looking at a discussion overhere at xenforo.com which I had contributed to. Then I saw that another contributor was online and I clicked on his name, showing me his Membercard. And yes, as expected there was the text: 'UserX was last seen: Viewing thread 'This is an interesting discussion', A moment ago.

Well it's nice to know that someone is viewing a discussion. But is this really such useful information? Wouldn't it be more useful and valuable if this text would say to me: 'UserX is now replying to thread 'This is an interesting discussion'. ?

That way I know he/she is replying to a thread I am currently looking at/contributing in, so I know I just have to wait for a few sec/mins to be able to read his/her contribution and I can act accordingly. Wouldn't such a status be beneficial for the interactivity (and therefor traffic etc) of our forums?! ('UserX was last seen: Viewing thread 'This is an interesting discussion', A moment ago.' doesn't do me and the site in overall much benefit, does it?)

You see, I love this about IM clients like WhatsApp (iPhone and Andread App) or MSN or Facebook Chat for example. When you are on a 1-on-1 chat the software gives you an indication that the other person is typing a message. Like 'User X is typing....' or something. Simple, but really valuable UI functionality. Why not extend this to forum software as well?

But since we are not on a 1-on-1 chat on forum software, there needs to be a place where we get an easy/instant indication that someone is replying on a forum posting. Maybe an popup in the bottom right corner (like so many desktop/web applications now offer for all kinds of messages) that gives you an notification that UserX is now replying to the thread you are looking at that very moment. It will boost (inter)activity and community-feeling instantly, no doubt.

See here Facebook's implementation:



Added:
XenForo already offers us instant live updated timestamps on postings: http://xenforo.com/community/threads/relative-timestamps.228/. I love this 'in your face' live/update functionality, so why not extend this all a bit more throughout the product? The already great notification-functionality could become even more instant when it would be supported by an 'in your face' fading in/out popup in the bottom right corner of the screen. Just like Facebook does it with 'immediate notifications', as explained overhere: http://blog.facebook.com/blog.php?post=83313097130

Then, wherever you are on a page, an immediate notification in the bottom right corner is always visible. You are not depended anymore on the upper menu bar, where you need to scroll to (of you are not on the top of the page, which is mostly the case anyway when browsing threads, isn't it?) to be able to see the alerts. No, you just get them served 'in your face', which will get your attention even better and thus stimulate interactivity/action/community feel even more.
I am not sure about the implementation, but let's hear some ideas. Shooting my idea is also allowed ;).

Please do [like] this first posting if you think it is a good feature suggestion for XenForo
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#2
Why not just subscribe to the thread and you will receive an alert when a new reply is made?

That way you don't have to keep refreshing member profiles to see what they're up to.

If it's the user you're interested in then if you follow them their actions will appear in your news feed.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#4
That way you don't have to keep refreshing member profiles to see what they're up to.
That's why my suggestion consist of a part where I speak of an instant popup showing me what is going on in the thread that I am looking at. Alerts are indeed already a fantastic means to boost interactivity, but I am wondering if more is possible.

Thanks for shooting
.
 

Wuebit

Well-known member
#5
That's why my suggestion consist of a part where I speak of an instant popup showing me what is going on in the thread that I am looking at. Alerts are indeed already a fantastic means to boost interactivity, but I am wondering if more is possible.

Thanks for shooting :).
Glover there is this might be a start mate?
 

Grover

Well-known member
#8
That's why my suggestion consist of a part where I speak of an instant popup showing me what is going on in the thread that I am looking at. Alerts are indeed already a fantastic means to boost interactivity, but I am wondering if more is possible.
XenForo already offers us instant live updated timestamps on postings: http://xenforo.com/community/threads/relative-timestamps.228/. I love this 'in your face' live/update functionality, so why not extend this all a bit more throughout the product? The already great notification-functionality could become even more instant when it would be supported by an 'in your face' fading in/out popup in the bottom right corner of the screen. Just like Facebook does it with 'immediate notifications', as explained overhere: http://blog.facebook.com/blog.php?post=83313097130

Then, wherever you are on a page, an immediate notification in the bottom right corner is always visible. You are not depended anymore on the upper menu bar, where you need to scroll to (of you are not on the top of the page, which is mostly the case anyway when browsing threads, isn't it?) to be able to see the alerts. No, you just get them served 'in your face', which will get your attention even better and thus stimulate interactivity/action/community feel even more.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#9
The already great notification-functionality could become even more instant when it would be supported by an 'in your face' fading in/out popup in the bottom right corner of the screen. Just like Facebook does it with 'immediate notifications', as explained overhere: http://blog.facebook.com/blog.php?post=83313097130

Then, wherever you are on a page, an immediate notification in the bottom right corner is always visible. You are not depended anymore on the upper menu bar, where you need to scroll to (of you are not on the top of the page, which is mostly the case anyway when browsing threads, isn't it?) to be able to see the alerts. No, you just get them served 'in your face', which will get your attention even better and thus stimulate interactivity/action/community feel even more.
Apparently, the 1.1 version of Xenforo that came out at the end if 2011 implemented the above, in the bottom left corner of the screen. Somehow I can not find it documented in the release notes (or maybe I need new glasses? ;)). I was wondering what kind of information this handy little popup provides? It seems that it displays the amount of new alerts one has? Or does it more? With more I mean something along the lines of:

-like informing you you have a new 'Conversation' (I still do not totally like that phrase for the good old private messages, but that's another thing)?
-informing you somebody posted on your profile,

Or does it just refrain to saying: 'You have x new alerts'? If yes, then I wonder if more context information like: 'Tigratus just posted on your profile' or 'Kim opened a conversation with you' makes the XF experience even more personal/engaging and stimulates people to check their alerts even more.

If this is already case (I don't know, since I don't seem to get this little popup box so often if at all during my sessions online), then I didn't say a word :).
 

Alfa1

Well-known member
#10
On my vbulletin website a much loved feature that I offer to VIP members is that they can see who is in a thread and what they are doing. This changes the static forum experience to something much more dynamic.

Making it usergroup dependent minimizes the added server load / connections.

I really dont believe that notifications can replace it.

I do think that XenForo should automatically load new posts similar to how IPS does it. Thats essential functionality.