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Split discussion into two different discussions?

edited March 2007 in Vanilla 1.0 Help
Hi Everyone,

I manage a small Vanilla forum (a dozen users) and I'm at my wit's end trying to figure out how to do this. I know how to do it with vBulletin and phpBB, but haven't seen anything that will let me do it here.

I have a single discussion that has sort of spawned a subdiscussion, so I'd like to split the off-topic posts into a new thread and title that appropriately.

Does this functionality exist? Or am I hitting a brick wall of Lussumo's "keep it simple" paradigm?


  • edited April 2006
    Technically, what you want to do is really easy (just make a new discussion and change each comment's discussion id).

    From a UI perspective, though, I can't think of any way to do it that wouldn't be a huge hassle.

    Maybe put a checkbox next to each post (for admins only) and have controls at the bottom for doing batch operations on checked comments. I've noticed that hiding a large number of comments is a pain also.
  • Actually, being able to click a checkbox by each comment and click "Move to New Discussion" at the bottom of the page would be an ideal solution. :) I wonder if that's something that can be achieved through an extension? Hrm.
  • Yeah an extension would be the ideal place for it.
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    The only other thing you'd obviously want, would then be assigning a topic for that newly split off discussion.
  • Well first you'd make a new topic, then you'd move the posts over.

    It could also be used to combine multiple topics, or fork off a discussion.
  • ithcyithcy New
    edited April 2006
    the way i'd do it: hide the checkboxes, and add a "fork discussion" link to the panel which reveals the checkboxes and turns the "add your comments" form into a "start a new discussion" form.
  • but as for moving some comments into an already-existing discussion, i don't know. i can't think of a good way to list all the discussion topics so that the admin can choose which one to move the comments into. maybe an ajaxified topic list filter thing at the bottom of the page?
  • edited April 2006
    Well the control panel would have commands other than "move selected comments". It could have "Hide selected comments" or "copy selected comments".

    Also, all this stuff would only appear for forum mods anyway, so regular users will never see it.

    ithcy: since it is an admin-only feature, it wouldn't be *too* much to ask to have them enter the discussion id number. It's a very visible part of the discussion URL, so they could be expected to know that.

    The other options are an ajax autocomplete box, and a massive dropdown.
  • right, of course. but it's a little tricky to have a selector for such a vague and potentially huge list as discussion titles.
  • ithcyithcy New
    edited April 2006
    i think the ajax thing could work - like a list of discussion titles matching the filter - with a radio button next to each one, or some other selection indicator, and each title linked so that the admin could pop one into a new tab and make sure it's the right discussion before moving the comments.
    //or better yet, when you click a discussion title, it would load the first comment(s) of that discussion into a preview area somewhere on the page.

    //bergamot: i thought about the discussion ID thing too; of course that would be the easiest solution, but it seems so ugly and non-vanilla-like. =)
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    ithcy, it's not so much an easy solution as it is a requirement :) every discussion, even a comment has a numerical ID associated with it inside vanilla. Otherwise things wouldn't run so smoothly.
  • Yeah I don't like it either, but it's the easiest solution to code, so will probably be the method of choice in V0.1 of this extension.
  • I just had a flashback to my early days when I was perusing in alt.2600, alt.dopefish and alt.dumpster...
    Split a discussion (Post 1 topic) Re: Split a discussion (Reply to original topic) Re: Split a discussion (Reply to original topic/thread) ... Re: Split a discussion, USENET style ("Fork" of original topic) Re: Split a discussion, USENET style (reply to fork) Re: Split a discussion (Reply to original topic/thread)
    Basically, everybody has the ability to change the topic when they post. If they do, it branches a new thread. If the user wanted to branch a thread, they would add a few words indicating the branched topic.
  • lech:
    i know about discussion IDs. i'm a web developer. but thanks =)
    my point was in fact that it's easy to ask the admin for the discussion ID, but it's not elegant.
  • WallPhone: Not all news readers understand that fork, unfortunately.
  • Right. And it doesn't satisfy the need to split an already established thread--but it could be a way to allow users to split threads when the user perceives the need.

    It probably gives too much flexibility. Consistency is lost since nothing prevents some splits titled like USENET style (Was: Split a discussion).
  • Yeah, I am in no way advocating usenet-style heirarchical crap.
  • Hierarchies <> simple : vanilla = simple :. hierarchies <> Vanilla
  • I would have said "awesome" instead of "simple", but the point still stands.
  • This forum also needs a tool for merging discussions. For instance, this one should be merged with
This discussion has been closed.