Blog or Forum?

I'm sure many of you are, like me, active in more than one internet forum.  I've found The Hour Lounge to be a warm and friendly place to participate, but also different from other forums.

A blog, or web log, is commonly defined as an online journal with entries presented in chronological order.  This is the manner in which THL is set up.  

A forum, OTOH, presents information by topic rather than date.  A typical forum that I'm familiar with would always list the most recent postings first, regardless of how old the topic is.  In this way, previous threads are updated and kept alive as long as there is interest.

Who cares, you may ask?  Well, one disadvantage of the blog format IMHO is that interesting discussions are soon lost and forgotten once they move off the front page.  The result (please do not take offense as I participate just as much as anyone) are short and sometimes superficial posts that usually die off after a few ooohhs and aaahhhs.  Not terribly dynamic, in other words.

I don't know if it's within Alex's mandate to change the format, however, I wouldn't presume to ask until the community has declared it's desires.  Even if the poll reveals that most think THL is a blog site, your comments will reveal if that is considered a good thing or not.

Best Regards,
Dean
One problem with the format you suggest is that
01/07/2009 - 10:55
posts will almost become unreadable. If each time a new post is made under a thread the thread bumps up it will be chaos! I'm speaking of past experience since we tried this system when I was moderating on The Purists and abandonned it after a few days as posts were all over the place. I'm open for suggestions...
Thanks for considering this Alex....
01/07/2009 - 20:13
as the voting appears closer than the comments would indicate. Perhaps my blog vs forum analogy is flawed as we have great two-way communication on recent postings.  BUT I stand by the point that once a topic moves off the front page it becomes much more difficult to locate and continue the thread, which I've tried often but have yet to succeed simply because it's too awkward.  Who here goes back in the pages to check for new posts?  One result you are familiar with Alex is that old discussions are re-started as new topics .  Another is that if a poster asks a question that isn't answered soon, it never will be.  All of this is moot for regulars but must be a PITA for the occasional visitiors and lurkers that only your site counter knows about!  This is what makes the forum behave very blog-like. A Show All New Posts feature would be an answer!  Along with Tony's suggestion to create seperate categories within the forum, which is common to high-volume sites.  Also, an Edit Post feature would be nice to allow the originator to add, delete or correct info. These modifications are critical, IMHO, to supporting the knowledge and research aspects of THL .
The other watch forums TZ and TP use the same format as HL which I'm
01/07/2009 - 11:02
fine with
I respectfully disagree, HL can in no way be considered a blog! Blogs
01/07/2009 - 11:45
do not allow exchange amongst participants, questions et al but only comments to what the moderator/author posts. HL is a forum and the New icon indicates when new posts are made. I remember the experience with The Purists a few years ago when new posts bumped the threads up and it became really complicated to follow discussions. My vote goes for keeping things as they are.
Your question is twisted
01/07/2009 - 13:16
I find your question twisted as you ask if HL is a Blog or a Forum but differentiate the two by the chronological order of postings whereas a blog in no way gives way to discussions and exchange but only reactions to the postings of the moderator. HL may have postings in chronological order but so do Timezone and The Purists which are the major watch discussion forums on the net and that doesn’t make them blogs IMHO. So if we go by your definition of chronological postings then HL is a blog but if we use the second part of your definition of a blog as being “ an online journal” then HL is in no way a blog but a forum.
For me, display order or method...
01/07/2009 - 13:20
doesn't really distinguiash between a forum and a blog.  It comes down to the fundamental orientation of communication.  As has been said, a blog is mostly one-way and a forum encourages and thrives with two-way traffic. With this perspective, I see THL as much more of a forum than a blog.  That being said, I see pros and cons to both display preferences and I can easily survive with either one. Cheers, Duncan
There is really no question...
01/07/2009 - 17:42
that this is a forum, and not a blog. Blogs often have 'comments' sections, where discussions can take place, but for this to be a blog, Alex would have to initiate every thread with a substantive post. As to your second question. I prefer the current format, if I had to make a choice. But there are other options, such as a 'switch' which would give the user the choice between the two types of views. There is another possibility, which I have seen used elsewhere, though rarely. That would be to archive into categories, perhaps along the lines of: vintage models automatic models maunual models chronographs movements This type of sorting would allow the user to easily find sub-categories of particular interest, and to continue discussions which, as you suggest, might otherwise be lost. Regards, Tony C.
Great suggestion Tony....
01/07/2009 - 19:32
as these sub-catagories would organize discussion and allow better management of traffic, which should address some of the concerns expressed. This is the format I'm most familiar with non-watch forums that deal with much higher volumes as well.
I really can't vote,
01/07/2009 - 20:43
but if I have to chose, as in this case, it's a forum. But I rather see it as a club. I have no real experience of a blog, but as I believe it's a place, where anyone can say nearly whatever about everything Forum in latin, means a meetingplace, a square or a marketplace, which I still think we should have here. I think Hour Lounge has succeded so enormous well thanks to it's personal touch, we, at least I, have a feeling of knowing you, as my friends, not discussion partners. In a forum you can present things, put them on display, discuss them, ask questions or just be polite. What can be more nice, than to congratulate a new Vacheron Constantin owner, or a person who started beeing intersted in the brand? Hour Lounge is for me a forum in it's genuine latin meaning, but mostly a kind of Club and I think it's a warm and comfortable place Hej! Doc
Me too: This old "club" suits me just fine...
01/08/2009 - 00:55
Thank you. I too remember the PuristS days...No thank you. Best to all, Miki
Take care Miki :-)
01/08/2009 - 13:04
Always nice to see your postings! Your friend Doc!
Can't lose the "club" atmosphere at the Lounge....
01/08/2009 - 17:43
no matter what!  I'm not familiar with what happened at Purists but they seem to being going strong now.  To be honest, that is the place I visit for more technical discussions...maybe that's the way to go rather than change anything here?
Don't get too carried away...
01/09/2009 - 02:21
The PuristS was foolish enough to have me on their Patek dissusion panel! Believe me, I ain't that bright. However the Mods sure are, just ask  Alex. PuristS is a great site that's owned by a terrific guy, Dr. Thomas Mau. Miki
Re: I like things....
01/09/2009 - 04:46
just the way they are now! Best, Tom
I like it the way it is now,
01/09/2009 - 20:09
which I would describe as a forum rather than a blog.