Re: Coho Tech Convener
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Sat, 22 Jun 2019 09:59:51 -0700 (PDT)
> On Jun 22, 2019, at 8:14 AM, Tom Smyth, Gather <info [at]> wrote:
> Discourse is a modern forum option that is really good at integrating with 
> email so that you don't really have to 'go there' for basic interactions, but 
> you can choose to 'go there' for extra functionality. I'm curious how it 
> compares to I think it is much more popular and is also open 
> source.

I think the forum people and email people may never come together.

I like email because it is spontaneous and immediate and it comes to my 
mailbox. It reminds me it exists. I can read as they come in or send them to a 
folder and read later. I can save individual messages where I can search for 
them later. I can forward them. I can reply privately to the sender.

I use forums when I’m looking for the answer to a specific problem— CSS, theme 
particulars, etc. Mostly software and computer related but I know there are 
others. The responses do come up on Google. I’ve finally learned what Google 
search can do. Easier it use Google than wander around a software manual or the 
Adobe website.But in general, I don’t like a discussion separated by topic. 
Possible cross-fertilization is not as possible, if at all. combines the two to some extent but is primarily an email discussion. 
But when you read on the website you can view messages by topic (subject line) 
or by hashtags or by individual messages in chronological order. There is a 
wiki, a database,  map, etc. Primitive but there. Files.

The subgroups are wonderful. Anyone on the main list can join a subgroup and an 
unlimited number of subgroups can be set up. The moderators decide if anyone 
can set up a subgroup or only the moderator. There are many options. The search 
function is very fast—nothing like Yahoo. 

There are lists for group moderators and for those needing support. Unlike 
Yahoo, you can always get help. His business model is to serve businesses so he 
is developing incredible capability. I’m on the Beta list and I have not a clue 
why people need those features.

People can also block messages by subject or hashtag, and I think by poster. On 
our community list, I block the messages about walking dogs, for example. When 
someone with a dog is sick it can go on and on 4 times a day.

One person I talked to had a travel list. There were subgroups by geographic 
location so you could  get information about the place. For people who want to 
keep in touch after a certain tour or cruise. On the main list they can ask for 
recommendations to anywhere that…

A list you can join to look around is our local neighborhood list. Send an 
empty message to...

takomadc+subscribe [at]


sociocracy+subscribe [at]

Sociocracy has subgroups by language but no one uses them. My cohousing 
community has subgroups for teams and working groups. Rooms, like the exercise 

Choosing a forum over the email list will determine who is more likely to join.


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