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Instruction for using FORUM?

Forums: General Discussion
Created on: 09/28/09 11:46 PM Views: 1526 Replies: 8
Monday, September 28, 2009 at 11:46 PM

Does anyone have user-friendly instructions that I can e-mail out to all the classmates so they won't be intimidated about adding comments to the Forum? I've added some new topics and no one seems to want to "chat" about anything...maybe they don't know how to use it? It is confusing to me and I play with it...for those really busy people, they might not want to try and figure it out, but if they have easy to follow instructions they'll start chatting!???

Anything you have would be more than I've got right now!

Thanks so much!

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Monday, September 28, 2009 at 11:53 PM - Response #1

The threaded forums are pretty standard as far as Internet forums go, and we do not have any type of forum user guide or anything like that currently that you can distribute to your Classmates.

One important thing to note about forums is some classes really take to the threaded forums, while some don't. This can be based on the size of the class, the number of Classmates participating in the site, and often the age of the Classmates. If the threaded forums aren't a hit on your site you may want to try the original forums with one main discussion that continues on indefinitely. Many sites who couldn't get the threaded forums jump started are having huge success with the original forums forat. Both are available for your use, so you might want to give that a shot. Once you get people participating on the original forums you might then try moving the group to the threaded forums format.


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Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at 12:09 AM - Response #2

Sorry to sound a little out of it, but can you tell me how I can find out what the Original Forum looks like and how do I change it over,if that's possible?
Thanks for the quick reply!

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at 12:13 AM - Response #3

Almost every site using the original Message Forums has them password protected, so you're not likely to find many examples you can see.

What I recommend is clicking on Edit Site Pages and placing a checkmark next to your Message Forums to enable them. Then post a welcome message. Then try sending your class an all class email inviting them to the new (well in this case old) forums and see if that kicks things off. It has for numerous other schools so I wouldn't be surprised if it does for you too.


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Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at 12:20 AM - Response #4

Well, that's easy! Thanks.
I'll wait a few day since I just sent everyone an e-mail announcing topics and see what develops, if not chatter, then I'll go back to the "original" Forums.

Question? Can I then go back pretty easily to what I have right now if that doesn't work?

FYI...we have about 340 class members and just over 3 1/2 months we have found 28 percent of our class, that's 101 people! Thanks so much for all your help!!! Everyone is enjoying catching up with old friends and constantly telling me what a good job I'm doing on the site! I owe so much of that you and your crew!

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at 9:52 AM - Response #5

Excellent. Smile

Yes, you can easily go back if you choose. In fact I've often seen schools running both at the same time. They'll use the old forums for general discussion and then create a threaded forum for specific purposes, such as sharing and discussion reunion photos taken by Classmates.


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Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at 1:33 PM - Response #6

You might find something useful from "Everything You Want to Know But Are Too Shy to Ask." Check on the Help Forum titled "Building Your Site." It's the first comment.

Carole

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at 2:44 PM - Response #7

How To Use The New Forum
Posted Friday, April 10, 2009

The Forum is a 3 tiered system consisting of:

1) Categories are pre-set by the site administrator. Suggestions and/or requests for new categories are welcome.

2) Topics. There can be an infinite number of topics under each category. To start a new topic: choose a category, then click on "New Topic". Enter a title for your topic, type your message and click "Save". (Just FYI: A "sticky" topic is one that is important and therefore tacked to the top of the page.)

3) Messages. To add to a topic already started, click on "Reply". Type your message and click "Save". Once saved, you can edit or delete your own message.


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When first coming into the Forum, click on a Category title to see all the Topics under it. Click on a Topic to see all the messages posted there.

*Note: The first time you want to post on the Forum, you will be asked to set up a forum profile. This only consists of 3 short items, all optional. 1) a signature, if you desire one; 2) your location; and 3) setting your time zone. You will be able to edit your settings later in "My Settings", at the top of the Forum page.
"My Signature" (optional) is anything you may want to appear at the bottom of each of your messages. For instance, your name, a short proverb or witty saying, etc.

You can Subscribe to receive new forum posts by email. Look for this feature at the bottom of your "My Settings" page, on every message you post, and at the bottom of every Forum page. (You can later Unsubscribe from your "My Settings" page.)

Master Photo:
If you would like to have a photo of yourself appear to the left of your messages (and later on your threaded emails), click on "Forum Photo" at the top of the Forum page (or on "Edit/Upload Photos" on the left navigation panel).

If the picture that you want to use is already uploaded to your profile page, just click "Make This My Master Photo". If your photo is not already there, you will need to upload it (see "Upload Photos to Profile" under the "New Member/FAQs" category).

If you want to use your senior grad picture, but you don't have one to upload, email: jtfordx4@earthlink.net and it will be uploaded for you. (Later this year, members will be able to check a box to use their designated profile picture as their Master Photo, but an estimated time of arrival for that feature is unknown.)


How to put photos in your messages:
Posting pictures in the Forum is easy!

1) Click on the Image icon (the little yellow square in the editor, at the top left, to the right of the word 'source').

2) In the Image Button popup, click "Browse".

3) Find your picture in your files and click (or double-click) on the picture.

4) Click on "Upload Now"

5) Click "OK" when it tells you it's uploaded. You can now see your image in the preview box.

6) Click on "OK" at the bottom of the Image Button box, and your picture will appear in your message box.

7) Complete your message (any text you want to add), then click on "Save". You can also preview your message if you desire, before clicking Save.

Using the text editor:
Experiment, if you want, with the editing tools. Changing the size and color of your font is fairly easy. Use the Preview button to see how your message looks before saving it. After saving your post, you will still be able to edit or delete it.

You can also attach files to your message:
1) Click on "Browse" at the bottom of the message box.

2) Locate and click on the file you want to attach.

After you save your message, your file will appear as a link at the top of the message.

(Note: Do not click on Preview after attaching your file because your attachment will be lost and you will have to attach it again.)

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Wednesday, September 30, 2009 at 5:38 PM - Response #8

WOW!!! Thank you!

That was exacly what I was looking for...I guess it was so obvious, I overlooked it!

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