FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Please feel free to post any feedback and suggestions for making improvements to the forum here.

FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Mark » 09 Dec 2008 18:47

Hi all

After the previous vote/poll it was clear that most members who voted were not in favour of amalgamating the sections relating to the early Cape Frontier Wars and the later Sekukuni and Zulu campaigns. However I believe we still do not have the right structure regarding the South African campaigns. One suggestion put forward by Mike Snook seems - to me at least - a strong and possible way forward for restructuring. The suggestions were:

1.The Cape Frontier Wars 1835-1878 (which would embrace the 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th CF wars with the Xhosa - a neat entity if they kept together instead of being separated as at present)
2. The Anglo-Zulu War of 1879.
3. Southern Africa Miscellaneous. (here is the place for Sekukuni, Boer-Zulu, Boer-British in Natal, Anglo-Basuto, the Diamond Fields 'rebellion', Matabele War, Jameson Raid, Bechunaland Field Force etc etc)
4. The Transvaal Rebellion 1880-81 (this is the name more commonly applied these days to the so-called 'First Boer War' - we are a bit behind the power curve on this on the forum as it wasn't the first war with the Boers anyway!)
5. The Anglo-Boer War 1899-1902.


I have therefore set up this poll for members to vote and/or add their views by posting below. The poll will be open for 10 days!

Please remember this is your opportunity to have a say in how the forum is structured so please do take time to vote or add your views if you find these campaigns of interest.

Mark
Mark Simner BA (Hons) MSc | Web: http://marksimner.me.uk | Twitter @marksimner
User avatar
Mark
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 3999
Images: 57
Joined: 10 Aug 2007 16:05
Location: United Kingdom

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Jonathan » 09 Dec 2008 19:06

Would the net gain in sub-fora be three?

If we proceed and restructure our sub-fora on South African conflicts, is this also necessary for other conflicts in other areas of the globe? (For example, Egypt & Sudan, Anglo-Afghan Wars)

Jonathan
User avatar
Jonathan
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 1452
Joined: 15 Nov 2007 17:52
Location: Wisconsin

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Mark » 09 Dec 2008 19:10

Jonathan

You make an interesting point and we may well also need to review other areas too. However I feel that South Africa is particulary complex and we just don't have it quite right at the moment - I just feel uncomfortable with it.

What do others think?

Mark
Mark Simner BA (Hons) MSc | Web: http://marksimner.me.uk | Twitter @marksimner
User avatar
Mark
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 3999
Images: 57
Joined: 10 Aug 2007 16:05
Location: United Kingdom

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Jonathan » 09 Dec 2008 19:14

I agree, Mark, and I have voted in favor of restructuring. :)

Jonathan

ADDED: I think we would just be adding 2 new fora in the end.
User avatar
Jonathan
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 1452
Joined: 15 Nov 2007 17:52
Location: Wisconsin

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Berkshire Dragon » 12 Dec 2008 00:48

Hi Mark,

Have just cast a vote and in the light of my previously made comments have voted for the changes as Mike suggested

It is my opinion that unless there is flexibility in the forums approach to subjects such as this, there is always the possibility (unlikely I know) that the forum will stagnate and would end up with an extremely narrow outlook. This quite often results with the forum losing members and credibility - neither of which is desirable. It surely has got to be a huge positive that the membership is able to have a say in the format of the forum and that changes/amends are tried out - after all if it doesn't work out in the way that we all hope then I assume that it could always be reversed.

I am also in agreement with the point that Jonathan has just made about the potential for 'expansion' on other campaigns and I am sure that in time this will become neccessary as the membership of this place expands and the 'local experts' for those particular campaigns come on board and add their knowledge to what we currently have and enjoy.

In the meantime let's move forward!


Mark
User avatar
Berkshire Dragon
Participating Member
 
Posts: 180
Joined: 24 Dec 2007 18:41

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby siegebatteries » 12 Dec 2008 14:42

The problem with structuring any forum for people with similar but not necessarily identical interests is that you will never please everyone.

Why do people join a forum? Some would say: to benefit from others' expertise and in return to share their own knowledge, however limited.

But individually their interests might be structured very differently - some people have joined this forum because they are interested in an individual who may have served in more than one campaign on more than one continent; or in a particular unit which again may have seen action in various campaigns covered by the forum; or the member might be interested solely in a particular country/campaign. Then there are the medal collectors, the cap badge specialists, and so on

For those interested in a particular campaign, sub-dividing the various sub-fora would be very beneficial; for those interested in a person or unit that served in both, say, Egypt and Afghanistan - the great benefits of Internet search engines would pick up references in whichever sub-fora are appropriate. (Remember trying to find something of interest in back copies of roneo-ed newsletters?)

However, with micro-sub-division, someone with relevant expertise or small nugget of info but with no direct interest in a particular sub-forum might miss a post that they could help with.

Sadly, as we seem to have lost "posts since last visit" this is likely to happen in any case.

Unless the forum has a membership and usage approaching that of, say, The Great War Forum or Rootschat, some sub-fora might never get bigger than a single thread. My vote would be to keep the status quo but maintain and develop the internal search engine
20th Foot in SA and Mauritius 1868-1872 / Ashantee War 1873-1874 /Imperial Yeomanry 1899-1902 / Royal Marine LI 1900/1908 / Royal Navy and the China Station 1908-1914
User avatar
siegebatteries
Participating Member
 
Posts: 113
Joined: 20 Nov 2008 11:48
Location: South West France

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Mark » 12 Dec 2008 15:43

siegebatteries

Very interesting points! When the initial structure was put together it was done from my point of view which is a medal collector's point of view. However it obviously does not fit with other members thoughts who themselves see it from a different angle. I agree we run the risk of creating some sub-forums that may well be a bit too specialised and would be seldom used. Like you say we cannot please everyone - so best we can do is attempt a 'best-fit' for the majority. Which is not an easy task :lol:

Food for thought indeed!

Keep the suggestions coming guys.

Mark :)
Mark Simner BA (Hons) MSc | Web: http://marksimner.me.uk | Twitter @marksimner
User avatar
Mark
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 3999
Images: 57
Joined: 10 Aug 2007 16:05
Location: United Kingdom

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby swordcollector1 » 12 Dec 2008 23:44

Well, FWIW, and being a prissy kind of person, I like to know exactly where to go to either post on, or read about, a particular topic. In a sense, the organisational structure doesn't matter too much as long as the indexing is good...so I'd suggest labelling topics with their traditional, "well known" campaign names as well as their newer, and probably more historically accurate, titles. That said, the suggestions on category headings seem good and I'm broadly in favour.

John
User avatar
swordcollector1
Senior Member
 
Posts: 413
Joined: 15 Nov 2007 20:36
Location: Sidmouth, UK

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby mike snook » 13 Dec 2008 11:09

John

These are the standard names in use in universities, colleges and schools, and amongst the leading subject matter experts. It is just a question of VWF remaining current and, by extension therefore, academically credible.

We have always to adapt to the times - if we did not not the CFW would still be known as the 'Kaffir Wars' - which would not be at all appropriate in a more enlightened age.

Regards

Mike
Dr Mike Snook MBE psc
User avatar
mike snook
Honorary Academic Advisor
 
Posts: 1328
Joined: 19 Jun 2008 09:35

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Isandlwana » 13 Dec 2008 18:08

Mike,

That's the same point as I was trying to make with my Why 'Sekukuni'? post. But as Mark explained:
The only reason "Sekukuni" was adopted was due to the fact that this appeared to be the most noted way of spelling the name on various publications referenced during the creation of the forum.


Likewise in this thread I rather read amaXhosa & BaSotho, than Xhosa & Basuto, but that's just my own opinion.

Isandlwana
Not theirs to save the day but where they stood, falling, to dye the earth
with brave men's blood for England's sake and duty...
User avatar
Isandlwana
Honorary Academic Advisor
 
Posts: 598
Joined: 20 Oct 2008 19:16

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby mike snook » 16 Dec 2008 16:11

Dear Is

Yes; I take your point but that's pretty hard-core stuff isn't it - I think Basuto and Xhosa are still recognizable and allowable as conventional English renderings of African names, would you not say. By that argument we would never write 'Zulu' but would have to lumber about with 'amaZulu' rolling off our tongues (or not rolling off). Not sure I'm with you on that.

It's not quite the same issue as First Boer War/Transvaal Rebellion/(or, heaven forefend, first war of independence!)

How's your Xhosa click coming on; mine's not bad now though I say it myself (.....or try to say it myself, that is!) :wink:


Regards as ever

Mike
Dr Mike Snook MBE psc
User avatar
mike snook
Honorary Academic Advisor
 
Posts: 1328
Joined: 19 Jun 2008 09:35

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Isandlwana » 17 Dec 2008 16:16

Mike,

I'm improving my clicking thanks to a colleague at work!

I'll need it next month when I travel the route of the 1st/24th in reverse from Isandlwana to Cape Town!

Regards,

Is'
Not theirs to save the day but where they stood, falling, to dye the earth
with brave men's blood for England's sake and duty...
User avatar
Isandlwana
Honorary Academic Advisor
 
Posts: 598
Joined: 20 Oct 2008 19:16

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby mike snook » 17 Dec 2008 20:25

Ah....you lucky chap.... enjoy.

About the same time as I travel in the same direction as Col Sir Charles Wilson. Hopefully I won't have to turn back for the weight of incoming fire like Sir Charles!!

As ever

Mike
Dr Mike Snook MBE psc
User avatar
mike snook
Honorary Academic Advisor
 
Posts: 1328
Joined: 19 Jun 2008 09:35

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Mark » 17 Dec 2008 21:01

Just to remind members that this poll finishes on the 19th December so please do cast your vote if you would like a say in any potential changes to the forum structure.

Mark :)
Mark Simner BA (Hons) MSc | Web: http://marksimner.me.uk | Twitter @marksimner
User avatar
Mark
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 3999
Images: 57
Joined: 10 Aug 2007 16:05
Location: United Kingdom

Re: FAO All Forum Members - Forum Structure Poll 2

Postby Mark » 20 Dec 2008 02:59

Hi all

The vast majority of those who voted were in favour of Mike's suggestions regarding the structure of the South African campaigns sub-forums.

This will now be looked at by the forum staff and introduced shortly.

Thank you all for voting and adding your thoughts to this poll/thread - it is much appreciated.

Mark
Mark Simner BA (Hons) MSc | Web: http://marksimner.me.uk | Twitter @marksimner
User avatar
Mark
Forum Administrator
 
Posts: 3999
Images: 57
Joined: 10 Aug 2007 16:05
Location: United Kingdom


Return to Feedback & Suggestions

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest