Originally Posted by coalminecanary
i gotta ask - what is the point of the categorizations? can't people tell from the title what the general category of the thread is? the categories just confuse matters if your post kind of overlaps them, causing many to get lost etc.
I think the best solution is to reduce the sub forums.
Honestly - I think that we would do just fine (better in fact) if we only had two categories: hamilton photos and hamilton discussion. A possible third could be general discussion. I'd even argue that the photo threads should come in under a single-topic system, so that they get more attention.
I just went to take a closer look and the more I think about it, the worse the categories seem. They ALL overlap and are so intertwined it makes no sense to split them off like they are:
Downtown and City of Hamilton (11 Viewing)
Suburbs (1 Viewing)
Why do we segregate geographically? I would prefer we didn't - but these groupings are the only ones that make at least little bit of sense.
Urban, Urban Design and Heritage Issues (5 Viewing)
Doesn't urban fit under downtown? Isn't urban design related to the economy? And to transportation for that matter? If I post about LRT streetscaping, is it urban design or transportation and infrastructure?
Business, Politics and the Economy (5 Viewing)
Doesn't politics encompass everything we talk about here? ANd doesn't everything have an economic side to the story? Do house price discussions go here, or do they go in the downtown/suburban sections depending on where the houses in question are located?
Transportation and Infrastructure (2 Viewing)
Do I post B-Line information here or in "Downtown and city of hamilton". And if it's about transit funding, does it go here or in the economy subforum?
Culture, Dining, Sports and Recreation (1 Viewing)
Talk of a new stadium - does it go here? Or under Business? Or Hamilton Downtown? Or Urban Design?
General Discussion (3 Viewing)
What does this mean under the current context? Anything that doesn't fit into other categories? Anything that fits into too many other categories? Non Hamilton discussion?
Hamilton Photos (3 Viewing)
This is the only one that is clear as day :-)
The biggest reason I think we should get rid of the subforum structure is that I have no clue where to start when I am looking for a thread. I know I replied to a thread on a certain topic and without fail, I open 3 or 4 subforums looking for it once it's dropped off the active threads list. I can't be the only one!
edit to add: The only argument I can think of to keep the subforums is if there are people who are really only interested in one or two of the subforum themes and will routinely ignore the other ones. These people would be annoyed by sifting through LRT discussion if they only care about sports and culture for instance.
But do ANY of our users stay away from ANY of the categories? If not, then they do much more harm than good I think.
I think the issue is the subcategories are not being used as originally intended:
Downtown and City of Hamilton
were meant to discuss the specifics of individual construction projects as they progress from planning and design to construction. There is always scope creep in these discussion points to include urban design issues and politics, which were never meant to be included in these threads.
Urban, Urban Design and Heritage Issues
is more encompassing and is where urban issues for specific neighbourhoods should be discussed (i.e, Locke Street, Innovation Park)
Business, Politics and the Economy
This is where any socio-economic or political discussions should be confined. It tends to creep and cloud most threads here.
Transportation and Infrastructure
is where the design and construction of LRT, road construction, sewage treatment plants etc. belongs
Culture, Dining, Sports and Recreation
should be self explanatory. This is where new shows, restaurant openings, sporting events are discussed. I really don't think talk of a new stadium belongs here. That would be a construction item. Talk of a team moving to Hamilton, however, does belong here.
and Hamilton Photos
are self explanatory.
I am really not in favour of removing categories. This is a standard format for Local SSP's as they are created here. I am pretty sure the forum creators would like to keep things as standardized as possible for a databse like this. I think it really is more a question of it being used as intended as opposed to the free-for-all posting that has been taking place to date.
From the forum entry page there is a clear description of what each sub-forum category should contain. As long as you read that before proceeding, you'd get a clear picture of what kind of discussion belongs where.