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Mobile Users posting in incorrect forums

Discussion in 'General XenForo Discussion and Feedback' started by Alfa1, Aug 26, 2016.

  1. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the social & mobile age. Many people no longer post in the correct thread, correct forum or even the correct part of the site. Mobile users accustomed to social media are oblivious to how a forum works and completely ignore the basics of forum software functionality. They just post away anywhere.
    Its a trend that has been picking up steam in the last year. We even had to close our top listed node to reduce this. But if this continues then it will become a very disruptive problem. Not unlike how mobile use required forum software to have responsive design.

    I hope that XF2 will bring some solution, but unfortunately I have not been able to come up with many suggestions for solutions.
    rogerl, CarpCharacin, Veer and 8 others like this.
  2. Robust

    Robust Well-Known Member

    Not really any solution that I see in the screenshots.

    The solution would be a completely different forum software, designed for today's social media age. People don't want to be scrolling through forums, they want stuff quick, that's today's day and age. Something like Discourse or NodeBB is more suited for modern age for that kinda thing. People don't want to adopt change but they want the solution, the solution is to change how forums work (aka, Discourse).
  3. RobParker

    RobParker Well-Known Member

    I think you guys need to decide if you want to run a forum or a communication platform. They're no longer the same thing.

    It very much depends on the topic/area, to say people want to scroll and absorb content is correct for some things but in other areas people very much want a discussion (or help) and a forum very much plays a role there.
    Gamorreaner, AndyB and Steve F like this.
  4. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    Forum browsing & posting behaviour has changed rigorously. Simply moving a few posts & threads is not an issue. But try to keep up at dozens of off-topic posts to random threads each hour. We need the order of forums and neatly categorizing topics in nodes.
    But we also need to usability to allow or even force social mobile users to comply with the organization of forums and threads.
  5. RobParker

    RobParker Well-Known Member

    No, we don't. They're different things. A good user experience where people can find what they want and engage as they want is what we need. For lots of people that's still a forum but equally, for some topics it might not be any more.

    "Back in the day", if you wanted to create a site where people could talk about your niche subject, you created a forum about it. Nowadays you might create a facebook or whatsapp group instead. That doesn't mean we need (or want) to turn forums into facebook. It just means they're different tools.
  6. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    I think they are the same, but I can understand it can read as if I mean something different.

    Members who are used to social media interfaces, using a forum website through a small screen mobile device and thus seeing/noticing limited information. Some come to a page from Google making them oblivious to the forum structure. They will just post to whatever thread they are in, as they cant even see the thread topic. They only see a reply box and a bit of the last post. Maybe a very collapsed breadcrumb which essentially gives no information in XF1. Here is what mobile users with resolution 320x480 see they see if they are taken to the end of a thread:
    Possible migration from vB4.2 to Xenforo   XenForo Community.png

    Or post a new thread to the first forum you have, because that's the only forum they see.
    Here is what the same user sees in landscape position:
    XenForo Community.png
    Mobile users do not scroll. They swipe down. But touching the forum node will open it.
    If your top positioned forum can be posted to then thats where you will get a lot of threads from mobile users.

    A global new thread button is a popular addition to forums as this will guide mobile users to the correct forum node.
    A similar threads function can also help prevent users posting a duplicate thread.
    A more clearly visible thread topic and breadcrumb near the reply box can help prevent users from posting to the wrong thread.
    I don't think such functionality changes a forum into Facebook. I know such functions are limited in scope but at least these help. There are probably better suggestions in regard to XF2 interface that can be made to address the problem.

    I certainly don't want to turn XF into a social media setup. But this is a problem that I hope to find a solution to somehow, as it doesn't look like it will blow over.
    The XF2 screens indeed do not look like this has been addressed yet.
    otto and Crazy-Achmet like this.
  7. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    We have reached 82% mobile use now. Including 4% tablets.
    Overzicht   Google Analytics.png
    I wonder if the trend will continue towards 90% mobile. This is disruptive to the traditional use of forum software, as a lot of information and functionality on the page elements are not visible to the mobile user.
    Veer and Pierce like this.

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