Prior to starting this blog, I was a regular member of two popular local forums for the past four years. Comparing a forum with a blog, both do share similarities like how one creates a thread/post, one expect people to read it and then comment on it. But there are differences as well. Please bear with me, as this is a long post.
Firstly, a common thing in a forum is what we call crappy threads, a thread that readers has no ideas at all what the author is talking about, a cock and bull story with no attached pictures to prove his/her claim or just simply trolls. Standard replies one will likely see in such a thread are “This thread sux!”, “Close and ban”, “LOL” or simply smiley.
In a forum, people are more straightforward and sometimes harsh in their replies. One of the possible reasons might be due to post counts. Forum people especially newer members are very concern of the amount of posts they have. Some view a high post count as a form of status and seniority thus will make a mad rush to post in every threads. That is perfectly normal. Hey even me myself do it when I first started out. The feeling is that one wants to be part of every discussion. I guess I have lots of time back then, unlike now.
So when one clicked on a crappy thread and find out one has just wasted one’s time reading it, the only way to get something worthwhile of this worthless thread is by posting a irrelevant comment to plus one to one’s post count. That is why even if a thread is crappy, it is not surprising to see pages of non-constructive replies flaming the authour. This is totally acceptable. It’s our way of telling the authour to stop spamming the fourms with your crappy threads.
But in a blog, people tend to post positive replies. Even if the topic isn’t interesting, at most people just don’t comment on it. You seldom see people criticizing and scolding one’s blog post right?
This behaviour can be further explained by categorizing a forum as a coffee shop and a blog as one’s house. It’s ok for one to make commotion in a coffee shop or any public places since it is open to all, everyone is free to voice their feelings but you do not get people coming to your house and telling you that you sux right?
Secondly, forum people hate newbies. They dislike newbies asking the same questions that had been answered before in previous threads over and over again, newbies who expect to be spoon-fed with answers without doing a simple search first, newbies who post in the wrong place, newbies who didn’t read the guidelines before posting etc. Nobody blames you for asking a n00b question in a blog right?
To wind things up before it gets too long, one must be thick skin, open minded and able to take criticism to survive in a forum. Btw whatever I mentioned above, I’m guilty of committing. I just wanted to share my thoughts and get your opinion. Feel free to discuss.