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The Local Forum RIP 2005 - 2009

This forum is dead to me

Johno
post 17.Jul.2009, 12:30 PM
Post #46
Joined: 23.Jul.2008

I still think the random and often either stupid, pointless or often downright wrong title changing the worst. And letting anyone do it ...
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The Local
post 17.Jul.2009, 02:57 PM
Post #47
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 22.Dec.2004

Dear all,

Thanks very much for your feedback - we do appreciate your opinions.

Of course, we want as many people as possible to use and enjoy Discuss. We're constantly trying to find the right balance between keeping the forum spicy and interesting while ensuring that it appeals to as broad a group of people as possible.

The recent changes were designed to improve the forum's quality and to make it more inclusive.

With hundreds of posts a day, some fairly stringent legal requirements (which our editor, as 'ansvarig utgivare', is responsible for complying with) and different people involved in the administration of the forum, there are short term ups and downs in that balance. But hopefully in the long term the balance is consistent.

Editing thread titles was a specific response to a complaint we've often had from forum veterans that new users ask questions which have been discussed ad infinitum already. Clearer titles make it easier for new users to find discussions which answer their questions. It also makes it easier for everyone else to know what the thread is all about.

Our policy on removing posts hasn't changed since our conditions of use and FAQs were crafted way back in 2005. (Although there have been periods in the last four years when our ability to implement the policy has waned somewhat.)

We removed the gay and lesbian section since the 'Life in Sweden' section served those needs perfectly well and it simply wasn't being used.

As I said, we do appreciate your feedback and we will bear it all in mind.

Kind regards

Paul R
The Local
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Nuname
post 17.Jul.2009, 03:21 PM
Post #48
Location: Gothenburg
Joined: 18.Apr.2005

QUOTE (The Local @ 17.Jul.2009, 03:57 PM) *
Editing thread titles was a specific response to a complaint we've often had from forum veterans that new users ask questions which have been discussed ad infinitum alread ... (show full quote)


Hi Paul.
Thanks for the site & response. As a "veteran" I believe that what was suggested was sticky threads about such topics as, driving licences, Sambo visa's, etc.
I don't believe that people who are unable to successfully search old threads will be helped by the title being changed, for example I think there are currently two threads about sambo visas on the front page.
Changing title threads has just annoyed people; as has not responding to threads in the feedback section, why have it if it is going to be ignored?

Regards
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Miss Kitten
post 17.Jul.2009, 03:38 PM
Post #49
Location: Kronoberg
Joined: 20.Aug.2007

The sticky issue was brought up and addressed in this thread:

http://www.thelocal.se/discuss/index.php?s...2&hl=sticky

I think EB explains pretty well the problems associated with stickying certain threads.
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Nuname
post 17.Jul.2009, 03:43 PM
Post #50
Location: Gothenburg
Joined: 18.Apr.2005

Ah I see, Bob doesn't like them. That's OK then.
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Moony
post 17.Jul.2009, 06:09 PM
Post #51
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 28.Jul.2007

As an alternative to stickies why not compile a Frequently Asked Questions with a perma-link at the top of the Discuss page(s)? I'd be willing to work on it myself - unpaid - if it's agreed that it's a good idea.
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007
post 17.Jul.2009, 10:02 PM
Post #52
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 2.Apr.2006

QUOTE (The Local @ 17.Jul.2009, 03:57 PM) *
Thanks very much for your feedback - we do appreciate your opinions.

thank you for your reply paul r. we appreciate your time to reply to the feedback.

QUOTE (The Local @ 17.Jul.2009, 03:57 PM) *
We removed the gay and lesbian section since the 'Life in Sweden' section served those needs perfectly well and it simply wasn't being used.

thank you as well for addressing the issue which was raised and ignored by the discuss editor. the indifference to reply to feedback gives an impression that the editor values changing capital letters into lower case letters in thread titles more highly than giving a response to a query when it was originally posted in early june and then again it was bumped and discussed heatedly.

the explanation you provide seems quite reasonable and uncomplicated. perhaps a more prompt reply to feedback in future would reinstate some hope that TL does still have the members in mind.
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Holecutter > The Howl ...
post 18.Jul.2009, 08:18 AM
Post #53
Joined: 12.Aug.2007

From a business point of view, the post from TL says's zilch, and is once again another repeat of what we already know. What is most disturbing though, is the way established posters suck up to the same old message. Lets take a hard look and do a bit of a reality check on the future of this site. In doing so. we will strip out all the mind numbing adverts.

The real reason why people gravitate to this site, is what they hear from others, meaning, it is a fun site to post on...was

The editorials in most part look as if they were written by the daily mail or the sun, and with all the grammatical mistakes that goes with it.

The new layout looks like the inside of a babies potty...whats with the baby blue thing. Buts lets be fair, even though its more functional for some( I'd hate see their work if they were house painters) for others including myself. Its nothing more than a very Swedish way of control over content. Which in effect, strips out all that is necessary to keep this site lively and interesting.

If my business had reached a cross roads as I see here, and the TL people walked in and said...here is our business plan for getting you back on track...I'd show them the door.

The present practice of deleting every thing that could be controversial or a catalysts for an interesting debate, and that would draw in the punters, will ultimately be the downfall of the TL.

Lest see how long this post lasts.

angry.gif
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Plowbridge
post 18.Jul.2009, 10:16 AM
Post #54
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 11.Sep.2008

I'm with Holey in respect of the response from Paul R. It is merely a standard corporate PR reply and say's nothing new. It even puts it's excuses behind having "fairly stringent legal requirements". That is laughable as regulation in this sphere is very weak. But true to form the Swedish nature in accepting everything put in front of them without question is proved correct again. It must be rubbing off on the expats sadly.

But maybe therein lies some of the problem with many of the posters being too boring and expectant on others to give them entertainment. The thoughtful ones that make the interesting posts are also the ones not likely to accept the dogmatic censorship rules put in place and accordingly are posting less and less.
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High Priestess Kang - Slu...
post 18.Jul.2009, 02:43 PM
Post #55
Location: Not in Sweden
Joined: 14.Jul.2006

Paul...

Thank you for taking the time to acknowledge our concerns and respond. I respectfully disagree with a large portion of your rationale, however.

While we can appreciate your wanting to keep the business you have cultivated free from harm and liability, I do not recall reading one instance where any of the members have advocated allowing hate speech to remain in posts or be the pervasive mindset in Discuss. As a matter of fact, one of the larger grievances is the lack of moderation of said hate speech and violent suggestions and it has been trumpeted multiple times over the years by the participants.

Given the above, I find it slightly ironic that proprietors of The Local have no qualms about the fact that posts made by members are arbitrarily moderated/edited without any disclaimer. I, along with many others, deeply resent the fact that your paid employee deliberately and intentionally alters our posts without rhyme or reason and distorts our messages (imperative to note that this action is taken where neither hate speech nor liability are an issue). While we make act childish at times, we're a group of articulate, well-educated adults who deserve greater respect than what has been exhibited by your charge, Editor Bob.

In so far as improvements and enhancements are concerned, multiple members have offered to lend a hand, free of charge, over the years to improve the functionality of this website and the discuss feature. Specifically - developing methodologies to keep trolls, socks and habitual offenders from participating *and* developing a sticky/FAQ area for people with questions which may be redundant in nature. The fact that Editor Bob has limited the query function to words containing four letters or more doesn't enable/enhance the search feature - it makes it all the more challenging (ex: the word pet is a three letter word. There are ad infinitum threads asking about the importation of our furry friends.).

And - it also should go without saying - why not seek to have a forums administrator who has an actual understanding regarding the subject matter at hand? Editor Bob does not live in Sweden. He has admitted to having no linguistic skill set (detrimental to those looking for information regarding Swedish law) and little comprehension of Swedish cultural mores. While he may be well-suited for your sister site, he's not the optimal candidate for the job here (his penchant to completely alter thread titles and thus render them nonsensical has been demonstrated multiple times).

I'm with Plowbridge and Holecutter. These improvements are, unfortunately, detrimental to the overall feel and function of The Local and its Discuss feature.

As I see it, the current trend as it relates to Discuss is creating a forum of FAQs where individuals ask redundant questions, receive their answer and go along their merry way. It is not conducive to creating an environment for discussing Swedish and International news/current events. In essence - The Local is well on its way to becoming a one-trick pony for n00bs moving to a new country. Such methodology will not breed habitual users and daily, return participants since the subject matter is mind numbingly repetitive (and widely known if you have been posting on The Local for an extended period of time).

Given that The Local has invested resources in a C-Sat survey, one would think that you would look no further than this thread for free advice for improvements to the overall site. Between the inane redundancy of the topics, Editor Bob's administrative criteria and the watered down content on the news site, the long standing clientele is not pleased and has specifically cited OFIs on a repeated basis. Off-line and off-site, there are plenty of people who are discussing how the weaknesses are driving people away.

Hiding behind legal rhetoric isn't going to placate anyone.

Lastly - while you may be sitting there, proverbially rolling your eyes and pulling your hair out about the fact that this issue is not going away, might I offer an alternative way of viewing this. Your customer base actually cares enough to spend time posting well-thought messages about your product. Your customers care enough to fight for the quality product they have been consuming for five years or so. A truly horrific problem to have, yes?

It's all too apparent to me and many others where the problem lies. While we may have been frustrated by some of the changes over the years, nothing has alienated people, frustrated people and aggravated people to the point of no longer participating more than Editor Bob's arrogance and refusal to adapt to the current environment. It's like going into a bar and having a sawed-off, arrogant bartender ignore you or spit in your beer. The end result is that people will stop coming and your business will shutter.
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Johno
post 18.Jul.2009, 02:50 PM
Post #56
Joined: 23.Jul.2008

As a comment on the editing skills, look how they changed the title of "Moving to Sweden with a broken arm". What idiot changed it to say Sweding ? Words fail me.
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