Not planned Thread vs Discussion vs Topic


Well-known member
(devoting a dedicated thread discussion ;) on this)

Triggered by this remark from Floris:

THat resparks the conversation then about calling a thread a discussion and the button still being called a thread, etc.

I thought:
Thread vs Discussion or Topic

Indeed, this is a good point. Overall... I always hated the word 'thread'... on vBulletin and every other board that uses this phrase. When there was not a Dutch translation available for vBulletin at the time... my dutch members kept asking me 'what is a thread'? No clue. I mean when you translate it you get : 'draadje' (which means so much as wire/line (and thread), but people in The Netherlands never ever talk about a 'draadje' when it comes to discussions. Apparently, it is common language/knowledge for English speaking people using a web board(?). As a Dutch person I find it still a bit of a weird word to use on forums... I much prefer [New Discussion] or [New Topic].

Brogan explained:
Thread relates to threaded view, as opposed to flat or linear view.

Ah yes... thanks for pointing this out, because now I realize that this makes the word 'thread' even more non-fitting on XF, perhaps. XF does not use threaded view... you can not select this alternative view... only flat/linear view is possible (which is a good thing IMHO). So if XF doesn't even provide threaded view... why call a discussion a thread then?

Instead of I would prefer:


Well-known member
Personally, I greatly dislike Thread too, so very 1995 - have long since changed to topic instead, but in differance to the majority here being used to thread, I have been using "thread" to save confusion.

Discussion is a bit combersome, but I could live with it.


Pretty much the same thing but threads can have the feeling that it's actually a thread whereas a discussion.


Well-known member
personally i think which 'Discussion(s)' could be much better than the other ... so +1 for Grover. ;)


Well-known member
Add a poll Grover..


and any other choices you want :p


Well-known member
How xf is marketed to and perceived in the market place, and compared to other software will depend on things like this. I would think this would be a business decision. When someone tells me 'check out this thread' and provides a link, it usually indicates that is a vb powered forum, the same goes for topic -> ipb powered. I realize there are many other software makers, but those are the forums I tend to use.

In addition, people drift from forum to forum all the time. The more terminology those people need to remember the less friendly it will be for them.


Well-known member
as by my common language used, I always call it like this (both in english and in german language):
- I call a Forum always a "Discussion Forum".
- I call a Thread always a "Topic".

The word "Thread" is mainly used by forum-webmasters, but is not commonly used in real-life communication.
Well, I also did not see the word "Thread" being used at FaceBook, but rather the words "Discussions" and "Topics".

Just make it so simple, that every baby and every grannie can understand it.

Keep It Simple & Sexy


Well-known member
We use 'Topic' since the first day we started our discussion forum. 'Thread' is a typical vB word, and 'topic' is also a dutch word:)