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The Psychology of Forums

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by kiwi, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. kiwi


    Jan 1, 2008
    Auckland, NZ
    Just some ramblings at lunchtime.

    There are some interesting attributes to forums, such as this one we all love, I thought I'd share some observations, perhaps you have more.

    1/ Never post to your own thread. It's usually the last comment.

    2/ An interesting thread title attracts more traffic

    3/ Photos that are not very good, or are just boring typically receive lots of views, but hardly any replies

    4/ Photos that are exceptional sometimes receive few replies in comparison to views because mere mortal photographers don't know what to say apart from "great shot" and feel that this really doesn't add any value

    5/ Forums have cycles. Some weeks hundreds of posts, some weeks not

    6/ People post pics to the forum to get replies - why else do it ? Posters either want constructive criticism or just want platitudes dependent on what pushes their buttons.

    7/ Comments swapping - is it etiquette to post to anothers thread if they post to yours ? I think so

    I'm sure someone, somwhere is doing a doctorate on forums, but, it is an interesting world we all play in.
  2. taat2d


    Sep 28, 2007
    #1 is SOOOOO TRUE!!! That happens all the time to me. HEHE Can we add more?

    #8 Don't start a thread and sit there watching for someone to post it's like watching water waiting for it to boil.
  3. Maybe #1 is true because it's already dead and I,as the original poster, hopes, in vain, to revive it.:confused: :confused: 

  4. Now THAT is a great idea! :cool: 

    I'd add: It is easier to post an off-topic comment than it is to offer constructive criticism! (I do it all the time :redface: )
  5. Mart61


    Dec 23, 2006
    Camberley, UK
    Lot's of good observations here! How long did it take to figure those out?

  6. artona


    Jul 9, 2008
    Lot's of good observations here! How long did it take to figure those out?

    you trying to trick him into answering and thence killing the thread :biggrin::biggrin:

  7. jcovert

    jcovert Guest

    great observations.:biggrin:
  8. Mart61


    Dec 23, 2006
    Camberley, UK
    Pah! I've been rumbled!

  9. I've experienced #1 for sure....still don't know how to square it with the courtesy of acknowledgements if others care to comment.
  10. #1, I never know whether to post thanking someone and look like I'm just bumping for my own ego, or whether to just read and be silent and look like I'm ungrateful lol. Oh the politics of forum life! :325:
  11. okcandids


    Jan 12, 2008
    Southern NH
    couple of more

    I'd add a couple of more (mostly observed in the Portraiture forum):

    • There's definitely cliques. Folks who post frequently will gets lots of views and responses. Very natural, I think, as there's an element of watching their kids grow up and feeling connected to their life (by those who frequest said forum/s).
    • Anything heavily PP'ed will usually generate more response than reality, which I think is considered "snapshot"ish. Lots of skin treatment, sepia, B&W, and some vignetting will usually generate more oohs & aahs than just a normal, sharp color shot.
  12. Regarding #1, I usually go back and reply to each comment. In my opinion, if people took the time to read/comment in my thread, it is only common courtesy to respond to what they've written. Dialogue is usually a two way communication.

    Oren, as to your comments on the portraits, in my amateur opinion, portraiture has long involved a lot of manipulation, even in film days. Burning, dodging, adding in vignettes, fixing blemishes.........I think this is nothing new to Photoshop, simply easier to do, and more accessible to the masses, thus, more commonly seen.
  13. Interesting point of view and certainly a valid position to take. What you say certainly applies to those in search of love. However, those who visit only because they're trying to learn something may have a completely different take on how to post to forums like this one.

    Here's my list which I hope isn't too harsh.

    1. Always post to your own thread. If you ask for help be sure to report back with the outcome if your problem was solved. Don't forget to say thank you.

    2. Straightforward thread titles are much better than something clever or (worse) mysterious. Don't ever entitle a thread "Has anyone ever had this happen".

    3. Photos that aren't very good often help troubleshoot a problem. Post examples when you can, no matter how poor they are.

    4. Photos that are exceptional are appreciated but only if you explain how you got the results. If you strip EXIF data, be sure to include the important details in your post.

    5. Yep. Traffic ebbs and flows.

    6. People should NOT post pictures to forums to get a warm fuzzy response unless they post to the Gallery section. Otherwise only post a picture to illustrate a specific point.

    7. If someone responds to your thread you need not post to their thread unless you have something useful to add. Otherwise it's just increased background noise.

    Just my two cents worth. Of course YMMV. By the way, I have nothing against love. I feel the same way about love as Steve Martin does about sex. He once said, "I believe that sex is one of the most beautiful, natural, wholesome things that money can buy."
  14. Bob--I'm with you on 1-4.
    On #7--YES, and especially there is no need to quote and include their pictures, please!
  15. Mostly when someone posts a reply and ends it with the above...that's all it's worth :wink::wink::wink::wink::wink::wink::smile:
  16. okcandids


    Jan 12, 2008
    Southern NH
    Re: #1, I personally try and respond to each one based on whether there's anything I'd like to add as a response. If I get a bunch of "nice shot" without any other comment, I'll sometime group it into a "thank you everyone" so my response doesn't become the "Doctor. Doctor." scene from Spies Like Us. :biggrin: (read: nice shot. thank you. nice shot. thank you.)

    As for the portraiture manipulation. I don't disagree with the accessiblity these days vs. "simpler" times, and that some folks did it with film, too. I was just pointing out that the more PP'ed pictures usually evoke more accolades here than the "straight shot, minimally PP'ed" (read: some sharpening, cropping and maybe a touch of color correction). I can understand it---folks here are passionate about photography and in some ways I think they've "graduated" into look for more than just color, sharpness, and composition. It was more of a commentary than a complaint. :smile:
  17. On #1, I agree, but with one possible exception. It one posts an image looking for C&C, it can start a converstion about the image or images in question. Shouldn't the OP in that case respond? Agree?
  18. adrianaitken

    adrianaitken Guest

    You paid zilch for my opinion and that is what that is worth !!!
  19. adrianaitken

    adrianaitken Guest

    Don't start a thread about the 200mm f2 lens because the poor old forum server will get overloaded !!!!
  20. Yes, definitely! :smile:
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