Forums vs Discord - Permanence vs Non-Permanence

You can talk about anything else here!
Post Reply
User avatar
Site Admin
Posts: 202
Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2022 9:18 pm
Discord: Flit#4507

Forums vs Discord - Permanence vs Non-Permanence

Post by Flit » ... ix-Element

This is a really interesting read. I've been thinking that since most of our conversations are on Discord and similar, rather than on the board or mChat, it somewhat makes the board look a bit "dead" in terms of general conversation.

They make a lot of good points about the format of Discord, like how you have to sign in to access information, and how you are most likely going to miss conversations because they scroll by so quickly.
I feel like I've missed a ton of discussions just from the nature of Discord. Oftentimes I don't join threads (I miss the message that says they're posted) and therefore miss constant discussion about teams, to where once they're brought up outside of there, I express confusion.
This was an issue in Island of the Lost as well - but it's not anyone's fault, it's just the nature of the platform.
If more people had discussions on the forum, this problem wouldn't be as bad, but then of course, Discord is more convenient and people don't want to have to learn new tools.
Character Records

"Some people's minds just aren't worth changing
Some people's games just aren't worth playing
My peace of mind ain't always worth saving
I was just too young to see"

Nothing More - VALHALLA (Too Young to See)
User avatar
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2023 9:52 pm
Discord: Lura#4025

Forums vs Discord - Permanence vs Non-Permanence

Post by Lura »

I definitely see a lot of value in the permanence of forums. Back in the day search for game related info would very often lead me to some forum where these things were being discussed. But there's also a good reason for why this is the first time I'm ever actually participating in a forum: the permanence is "scary" to me. I was always so worried that I might write something wrong or anything, that for me the easiest answer was just to not participate at all.

On a chat platform like discord I can talk freely. I know people can still look up my message history and what not, but the more "enclosed" nature makes it easier for me to take my barriers down. Of course it comes with the caveat of very easily missing conversations when you're asleep or just have to leave the screen for some hours or even just a few minutes. I do get some FOMO from that too, but for the most part I've come to accept that it's fine for me to not be involved in everything, and to not know about everything. In that sense the asymmetrical communication does help, but I still don't feel like I'd be comfortable enough to hold a regular conversation on a forum.
User avatar
Posts: 10
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2023 5:17 am
Discord: CameronToveryn#1790

Forums vs Discord - Permanence vs Non-Permanence

Post by Toveryn »

So, I think the first thing that has to be said is that a lot of the most active people on the Discord are also some of the more active people on the forum. They know how to use the forums. There's just a preference for casual conversations to be in real-time, rather on the board, since that more closely simulates how an in-person conversation would work.

I will hand it to the author of this opinion piece that the archival nature of boards can be very useful for certain things, and that's why we have all our character submissions, approvals and records here, after all! However, I do have to contest their characterization of Discord as particularly clique-y. While I can't deny that I have seen my fair share of cliques in Discord servers or even practically running them, that's unfortunately just a natural extention of how a lot of human interactions work in general, rather than specifically being a symptom of Discord as a platform. Further, these comparisons are based on one person's personal experience with forums and Discord servers, and anecdotes don't track well for making bigger decisions from. In my own personal anecdote, in my time in various internet communities, regardless of platform, mods tend to suck. We have memes about Discord largely because of how ubiquitous the app is at the moment, but there are tons of other communities out there where mods are the clique in charge, and that is on and off of Discord. Finally, the author's anecdotes may well track onto something that has been studied and documented by academics, but without that on hand, I'll take all that with a grain of salt.

Now, I won't lie and say that Discord doesn't do some things that are manipulative, such as how notifications are tailor-built to give you a hit of dopamine and get you to keep interacting and using the platform. And Discord specifically of course is extremely scummy as a company. However this idea the of opinion piece that longer posts and exchanges of complex ideas and information is simply a higher, more worthwhile form of human interaction is absurd. As someone who used to think this way, over many years I have learned that interactions with people are generally meaningful and valuable for a ton of different reasons.

I think if there's anything worthwhile to be gained from this article, it's the idea that as the internet gets more consolidated, and certain types of website are abandoned because they aren't exploitable for profit by big corporations, we're often left with a small handful of options that don't handle every use case very well. Discord/Matrix and Forums are two distinct types of platforms that have two distinct sets of use cases. One is not inherently superior to the other, they just do different things well.
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests