Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Try Vanilla Forums Cloud product
Vanilla 1 is no longer supported or maintained. If you need a copy, you can get it here.

Social blogging...

This was just something I've been brainstorming recently.

Generally, in order to build a community, you need content. You generally can't just build a community out of a forum. Actually, I've done a pretty good job of it, having at one point 400 members of a purely forum-based community, but actually keeping those people and keeping the site growing is another matter alltogether.

Blogs provide great content. The main problem I see with them today is they are very individualistic. They are the blogger's site, and no one else's. You can freely go and comment on a blog, but that comment isn't really yours like a post on a forum is yours. That comment on someone's blog is just you leaving a note.

What I was thinking would be interesting was the concept of social blogging. Basically, everyone who uses your forum also gets a blog. For every single comment of theirs or every single post, they have the option of posting that to their blog. And thus when people comment on a topic in a forum, they are also commenting on someone's blog and vice versa.

I think it would be a really cool way of bridging the gap. You've got a community full of both writers and a community full of readers. They aren't just commenting on individual blogs, they are posting, replying, building community through the forum.

I'm trying to think of way to visualize it incase I haven't explained myself fully. Look at it this way. I have a Vanilla-based forum. It is the community. All the discussion, commenting, etc, goes on there. But each person also has their own blog based outside of the forum that are yet tied into the forum. The blogs have their own styles/themes/topics, etc, but their backends for posting, commenting, and replying are all tied into the forum.

So lets say on my forum I make a post about Halo 3. I also really would like this to be on my blog, so I click the checkbox "Add to my blog". So now I have the post on my blog AND I have an ongoing discussion already in the forums.

I personally think this is a great way for beginning bloggers to get readership and also for communities to form.

Is this already being done? Is this concept flawed or unrealistic? How would it be done? I was thinking you could either have the forum software do everything, or you could just get the forum software to tie into existing APIs for different blogging products.

Thoughts/opinions?

Comments

  • So the comments on the forum are the same as the comments on the blog, and when one is added to either place, it shows up in the other?
  • edited September 2005
    Exactly.

    Also, a post on a your blog can actually be from a post on the forum as well. Its not just restricted to commenting.
  • So if I make a post, it shows up on the forum as a discussion. And the same post also shows up on a special "kraks blog" page (if I check the button for that post?).

    And commenting on the forum discussion or the blog topic is one in the same?

    So all you would need is a "blog" extension, which really would be nothing more than a page that just shows the all posts that a user has started (and the posts comments)...if I followed you correctly. And that page of the users posts would be his "blog"?

    For some reason I am really confused.
    This kind of sounds familiar. I ran into a site a week ago that was one huge community blog...it sounds like what you are thinking of...wish I could remember where it was.
  • edited September 2005
    So if I make a post, it shows up on the forum as a discussion. And the same post also shows up on a special "kraks blog" page (if I check the button for that post?).

    And commenting on the forum discussion or the blog topic is one in the same?


    Exactly.

    So all you would need is a "blog" extension, which really would be nothing more than a page that just shows the all posts that a user has started (and the posts comments)...if I followed you correctly. And that page of the users posts would be his "blog"?

    Right again. That or the forum software could utilize the APIs of Blogger, Wordpress, etc, to move comments/posts back and forth (though I dunno if you can comment remotely using these APIs).
  • I think this would be possible to do with an extension or a mod for Vanilla. It would probably be easier to make the "blog" and the forum out of the same software. It sounds like it might be a little more than your usual extension but it should be able to be done.

    I know you can submit your posts via email with WordPress, not sure about the others, never used em. But tying WP's comments and posts to Vanillas might be kind of hard, I would think.

    Interesting idea, and I do think it would help create a better community. I imagine something like this would blow up and become huge.
  • blogs that allow comments and forums have always been basically the same thing except blogs take the first post by the figurehead much too seriously.
  • They have always been very similar, but as you said, the post by the figurehead is taken very seriously on blogs.

    Its as I said earlier, blogs are very individualistic, while forums are community oriented. Tying the two together would be ideal.
  • i don't think it is possible to do that by way of software. there will always be people who take charge and there will always be those willing to give that power.

    rephrased: a small, tight-knit group of individuals almost always ends up a clique.
  • I don't think you quite understand my thought process here.
  • i'm pretty sure i do understand it, and i think the problem is people and not software.

    having the same content a couple of times in different formats will add more exposure, but it won't change how people interact to the same information. people are either going to think they have something to say, or they are going to follow someone who think they have something to say. after time, these people will establish a pecking order and then new people who want to join in will have a hard time adding to what is being talked about... except now they have a better chance of stumbling upon it in a format they prefer.

    let me also say that i agree that it would be popular if it were executed.
  • having the same content a couple of times in different formats will add more exposure, but it won't change how people interact to the same information. people are either going to think they have something to say, or they are going to follow someone who think they have something to say. after time, these people will establish a pecking order and then new people who want to join in will have a hard time adding to what is being talked about... except now they have a better chance of stumbling upon it in a format they prefer.

    I just think that despite whatever "pecking order" came along, it would still be beneficial, as the community would still grow and the bloggers would receive much more feedback/discussion.

    I just don't know what the best way to pull this off would be. I'm definitely thinking a simpler forum software like Vanilla. I'd rather not mess with 3rd party APIs.
  • is growth more important than the end content?

    my bias is that growth can kill that what is special. things can get too big for their own good. look at the vanilla forums; someone like me actually heard about vanilla and is rambling like a baffoon instead of fixing problems.

    my "misunderstanding"/point was born more from the idea that a blending of the individual and the community almost always ends up in small, elitist groups that will be more concerned with themselves than the content they make. i don't think there is a way to get rid of that problem quite yet.

    a blorum or even a forlog would be popular and add to quantity.
  • LOL - "lorum or even a forlog"

    Thats awesome. I like forlog.

    Im sure there would still be a pecking order of sorts, but people would not have to subdue to it, I think the blog portion would keep that seperate, allowing individuals to break free of the "order". I still think its a good idea regardless if people formed cliques or not etc.
    "is growth more important than the end content?"
    I'd say they are equally important. You may have some great content, but it dont mean shit if no ones reading it.
  • Did a bit more research and the only option would be to integrate the blogs directly with the forum software. I was hoping it would be easy to just plug-in to existing blogging services, but the Blogger API for example doesn't have any option to submit a comment.

    Ah well.
  • I didnt think this would have been easy (or even possible) to do with existing software, like Blogger.

    I think it would be better to build the plugin/extension/mod for the forum you intended to use. So build the blog off/around Vanilla or something. Instead of having it go Vanilla-Blogger, just build the blogging stuff around Vanilla. With the potential that the site would have I think you would run into problems (maybe even legal ones) trying to linkup say phpBB and Blogger, etc...

    Something like this would be better off being built with the same software (or from scratch?). I think you could do it with Vanilla (or phpBB if you wanted) with a lil bit of hacking. And I still think its a great idea, and that it would get rather large.
  • I've got two ideas on my mind...

    A few people have mentioned the idea of porting Vanilla over to Ruby on Rails. I might be up for that. With RoR, I'd have absolutely no problem writing something like this.

    Or it could just be an extension to Vanilla. However, I'm not good with PHP at all, so it'd be very difficult for me to do it in PHP.
  • great content will get those people that matter in time. bad content will get everyone at that time, but will hopefully be forgotten in time.

    if you are looking for people, your content will suffer.

    seems like ror isn't so easy based on other threads...
  • Actually, I know exactly what itslike to have bad content and getting everyone at once.

    Back in October 2004, Halo 2 was leaked to the Internet. And I got lucky and captured a few screens of a webcam that people were playing Halo 2. I posted them on my site...and then subsequently got 260+ people online at once.

    The crapheads that stuck around ended up ruining my site.
  • i could only imagine some of the gamers you got when you have early info like that.
    that sucks your site got bogged down by that demographic.

    that content sure was gold at the time.
This discussion has been closed.