Suggestion to improve charcha

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Member since: Aug 04
Posts: 281
Location: Guelph, ON

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 17-01-07 15:05:50

Many a times we see that questions are repeated. Every question is important for the person who posts them. Some times they post it without searching the charcha. This is common in the message boards questions are asked multiple times. Many a times the repeat questions become new threads and people do add info to them and some just provide links to old threads. To address the issue of repeat posts I have a suggestion to make, if it is possible that it. I learned this from another board (" rel="nofollow">LINK ) where every time a new question is posted the site runs an auto search and provides the user with links to possible earlier posts with similar key words. That way the question doesn’t get posted and the user gets the answer he/she wants. If the use is not satisfied, the question can be re-formatted so as to generate new information. I have a feeling that this will reduce the clutter and also the user will get access to older links most of which have treasure of information which some time new threads don’t generate. The user can also reactivate the older threads if a new information is to be added. Just a suggestion. I thought I should put through the forum and see if you all agree and if this will improve the CD site. However, ideally before one posts questions a search should be performed.

Member since: Aug 06
Posts: 5286
Location: Canada

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 17-01-07 17:15:24

Thanks for your inputs Rainin ,

I was myself thinking about some suggestions subject to feasibility . A thread would help us brainstorm betterment of the site and the mods can pick up the ideas which can be implemented .

In order to minimise ignorant re starting of threads especially by new users , I think we can have a part of the home page inviting attention to the first time users where apart from an introduction to the site , rules for 'search in charcha' can be laid so that the 1st time users are aware of this facility . Another feature that canbe put on the welcome page would be aboutt he moderators and conception of this site and the vision statement.

I also feel (however I may be wrong) that the current home page be preceeded by another Introductory page which may less information and acts as a welcome door to the site giving mainly introductory information and rules / conduct and highlights of the site .This is largely aimed at 1st time visitors who would be better prepared / guided to the relevant sections in the current home page which may be next page to the welcome page .

Our suggestions may not be feasible or finalized but lets provide our observations as who knows some new ideas may spring up and add on to the betterment of this already good site .


Garvo Gujarati   
Member since: Nov 01
Posts: 3111

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 18-01-07 11:28:16

Nice thoughts friends!

Ranin, I was thinking about similar line for some time. Your suggestions are excellent to resolve this issue and I would be happy if I can implement it quickly. But before we jump on anything, let us think about kind of users and how much a possible solution can affect them.

1. Some users feels they do not have time to search for any information, let us just post a question, even though they know that they can search for the information

2. Some novice users, who does not know anything about discussion boards

3. Some users just becomes member to promote their product/services, posting a single topic and go away

4. Regular users like all the wise guys reading this topic

Now we have to deal with 1 and 2 separately from the rest of the two. How?

Any user having (say for example) less than 25 posts, when posting a topic, it will search past discussions and display a page with results. On this page, the user will have an opportunity to read past topics. It will give user three options. a) Cancel the post, as he got the information. b) He got the right discussion, but some of the information he need is missing, so give an option to append his question the selected thread c) He didn't got what he wanted, so start a new thread.

Remember guys, now we have about hundred thousand posts, and searching might be slow. So implementing this for each and every post (even by senior desis) does not make sense.

And even after doing this, how effective this is a question. For example, people will simply click, "Yes Create a new Thread" option without clicking the threads searched.

We simply cannot control the type 3 people. We tried to implement some logic like a newcomer can not post more than certain posts during initial time (Remember, earlier we had people posting same advt in number of different forums? now that issue is gone). However with some intelligence we can catch advertisers. Most of the advertisers are putting their phone number and email address. By catching it we can automatically prevent the user from posting it.

Fido, I don't think putting any text / new page for the new comer will help. As you might have noticed, just above the post topic text box, there is a clear definition on how to use Charcha. Almost all the new comers (and the oldies, many times) simply do not follow it. So having an additional page will not make sense. It is all about the users.

My company has internal knowledge base system and I can see it as a role model for future Canadian Desi improvements.

1. FAQs. For any posts, readers can vote for a FAQ. When it reaches a certain threshold level, it will be added to a separate database called FAQ. These FAQs will have a dedicated section, where people can visit and find the information they need

2. Best Practice/Best Advise. For any posts, readers can vote for a Best Practice/Best Advise. Similar to FAQ, when it reaches a threshold, it will be added to the Best Practices database.

3. Publication. Any user can post documentation, publication. This is similar to our Articles section

4. Communities. There are various communities and community experts. This is much like our groups (we tried that earlier, but didn't got much response) and Networks. Members can become part of the community and their profile will suggest in what area they are expert in. Users while posting a new question, can direct a question to communities, users etc. This way the system will send an email to a person or all members of a community, so that they get timely answer.

My wish list!

Thanks for your suggestions.

A Proud Indian Canadian

Member since: Aug 04
Posts: 281
Location: Guelph, ON

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 18-01-07 12:02:41

I feel that I got a lot from this board from the days I was looking for the info on immigration. The board has helped me and many making life easier by answering question very serious to mundane. Not to mention the jokes we read during the weekend. It is our responsibility to give a bit back to this community. Lets put our heads together and keep suggesting pointers towards improvements so that the person who visits looking for important info gets it with ease.

Member since: Oct 02
Posts: 1721
Location: Brampton

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 18-01-07 15:06:19

Originally posted by Garvo Gujarati
Now we have to deal with 1 and 2 separately from the rest of the two. How?

Apart from giving New and Novice users Automated Solutions. I would suggest to make 'Forum' page little Short. It is way too long and to top it up - Immigration Section is Last, just above My Messages (which doesn't help either).

'Newest Posts' & 'Latest Replies' are good. Which everybody will read - no mater where you place on page. I go through only these two (Sometimes only top half of the Latest Replies) ... Only when I need to search - I Check Complete Forum List.

Top of the Page is at Premium. Top should cover as many 'Forum Names & Explanation' as it can ... and 'Forum Names & Explanation' is enough - Number of Posts, Threads & Last Post to me is waste. Specially 'Last Post' where most of the items are anyways covered under either Newest Posts or Latest Replies.

It could Tooooooooooooo much of Work ... changing layout and all.

Mumbai Maazi Ladki ...

Member since: Jun 05
Posts: 12

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 18-01-07 17:03:18

How about FAQs to most asked questions. Answers to FAQ's can be linked to the thread/s. User feedback can be also be incorporated there.

Garvo Gujarati   
Member since: Nov 01
Posts: 3111

Post ID: #PID Posted on: 19-01-07 09:32:18


I agree with you that the charcha home page is too long. I will try to improve it and post a link here before I make it live for others. Keep checking. Thanks for the suggestion.


Yes, I mentioned creation of FAQ in my post. Will do it eventually.

Thanks guys. Keep suggesting.

A Proud Indian Canadian

Contributors: Garvo Gujarati(16) Fido(7) jake3d(6) Ranin(4) Maharaj(3) morning_rain(1) cadliving(1) Charlie(1)

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