01/06/2001, 5:28 PM
As you might have seen, Joe has been helping me get the boards a bit more organised, I hope it's to your liking.
Having had a chat with Joe about the whole thing, he seems as keen and as hopeful as I am that people will start visiting the site and getting involved. He also had some excellent ideas about how we could build it, which I'll go into at a later date.
In the meantime, we would appreciate any ideas and suggestions anyone has thus far. I know there's quite a few lurkers out there watching over us, so how about registering and telling us what you think?
We'd also be keen to get a few moderators on board for some of the forums, particularly the ones for the other league teams. It's not hard work, all you need to do is keep an eye on the posts and keep people in check. If you're interested, register and post here and let us know.
Finally, a request to all the unofficial site webmasters out there - if you don't have forums already on your site, or you're unhappy with your current forums, how about setting up here? No banners, excellent software, and what should be a pretty good community fairly soon. Let us know and we'll help you set it up!
I'd be interested in lending a hand...
How about I take care of the UCD and Shelbourne crowd!
01/06/2001, 6:11 PM
I see you've already started baiting UCD Neil! :)
just trying to get the ball rolling...
I like the look of this set-up. It definitely has potential to be real discussion zone, especially if there becomes a time of day when there are lots of people simultanously.
Are you goin to mention it on JW's site?
01/06/2001, 6:39 PM
Hey, doesn't bother me! Still though, when I said I was looking for moderators, I kinda thought a fan might be the best person... :)
Anyway, yeah, vBulletin is really very cool, although unfortunately I've already discovered one bug, which explain the gaps in some of the post. Just my luck that I happen to be running on Red Hat 7.0, but I'm working on it at the moment. The forums, good as they are, are really only a testbed though, to gauge interest. If they generate interest, we'll be registering another domain name and moving the forums into /forums so we can start installing new stuff. I reckon the first item will be a Slashdot clone, like I mentioned on corkcityfc.com.
That'll make it easy for people to start contributing content to the site, hopefully including some original stuff; and discuss that content. After that, everything will be custom-built, including a proper articles database; fixtures and results tied to a match report database; an extension of Joe's live match reports; "subsites" dedicated to teams; and maybe even blogs and the like. I'm not going to rush into it willy-nilly though, my involvement will very much rely on the stats the site generates and the involvement of the community. If the site catches the imagination of people, I'll start hacking code.
As to posting on JW's site, as I said elsewhere I really don't think it's fair to go pushing a possible competing site on eircomleague.net, that's not the way I play. If someone else posts it, well and good, but I'm not going to diss Johnny's hard work. Personally, I'd prefer if Johnny came on board with us, but I've made the offer before and he didn't appear to be interested. And I could hardly blame him, he puts a fair wedge of work into that site.
As i mentioned to you already Adam, i have lots and lots of free time for that kind of gig and also spent an obscene amount of time in front of a PC so what the heck, I may as well do something productive besides downloading mp3's and movies.
Count me in of you like as a moderator
wouln't mind rovers or shels
01/06/2001, 7:48 PM
Right, you got Shams and Neil got UCD. Ye'll have to fight amongst yerselves for Shels though! Deathmatch! Let me know when one of ye is dead :)
naw dont mind he can have em
Yeah I'll do the Pats one.......but I'm not sure why you need moderators?
anyway,for the uninitiated what exactly is the community based NL site proposal? Have you any links to similar sites so we can see the idea in action?
02/06/2001, 3:07 PM
"Yeah I'll do the Pats one"
Done. You haven't got full moderation powers and I might butt in every now and then, but that's because I don't know you from me - I presume you understand?
"but I'm not sure why you need moderators?"
Because of flamers, trolls, spammers and just plain dorks. Every forum should have a moderator, but soccer forums particularly because the fans can get kinda het up about things. Slagging matches - which I have no problem with at all - turn into flame wars, and sometimes into threats - which I have a serious problem with. I didn't want that on corkcityfc.com, and that wasn't down to any policy I was asked to implement by the club. Call me old-fashioned, but I run clean sites, and I demand respect on them.
So the moderators are there primarily to watch over the forums. If you see a thread turning nasty, you ask people to chill out. If they continue to act the dick, you lock the thread. If someone posts a troll - a nasty thread obviously started to initiate a flame war - you delete it. If someone is persistant in their behaviour, you get onto an Administrator and ask them for advice. If they're particularly bad, we'll boot them and block them.
As time goes on, and the site - fingers crossed - gets bigger and better, moderators will be invited to get more involved. For example, as the moderator for the Pats forum, you might be asked if you would like to manage the Pats section of the site. Of course, you won't have to do it if you don't want to, but that's the whole point of the site, which I'll come back to below.
"anyway,for the uninitiated what exactly is the community based NL site proposal?"
Well, first of all have a look at the Greetings (http://phootball.com/showthread.php?threadid=1) topic I posted, which gives a rough overview. To expand on that - bearing in mind that I'm making a lot of this up as I go along - what'll happen if the site continues to get support is that myself, Gaz and Joe will start to expand the site beyond the forums.
First of all, myself Gaz and Joe will work together to come up with a general layout and features for the end product. We'll do that in public, on this forum, so moderators and the public will be able to get involved and post their own suggestions. When we've settled on a layout and features, I'll start writing code; Gaz will start designing; and Joe, hopefully with the support of a few others, will start entering data for the content of the site.
We'll introduce a section at a time, purely based on traffic and the time we have available. So if the site is getting bigger and bigger numbers of visitors, we'll introduce more and more features. In the meantime, we'll be requesting and expecting more and more help from the community. So, again for example, if we set up a clubs database, we'll be putting a call out there for people to start submitting the player data for those teams.
And as that progresses, we'll start building a hierarchy of users, in the style of the vBulletin groups model. At the top, there'll be me, Joe and Gaz - Gaz in charge of design; me in charge of tech; and Joe in charge of the general running of the site itself - if he's willing to come on board in that capacity of course, which will be decided next Wednesday. Below us will be what vBulletin calls "Super Moderators" - they'll have complete write access across the site.
Below them will be "Moderators", who will monitor and edit certain defined portions of the site, for example if you took over the Pats section of the site, you would be the moderator for that area, and you would be able to access and edit all of the content in that area. Below the moderators will be "Trusted Users", people who regularly submit content to the site, maybe with their own columns. And finally, you have the users themselves, who will be encouraged to submit content. And of course you'll have the people who will just browse the site, but we'll be continually encouraging them to get involved in some way, any way.
So what we're doing here is in effect - and in all honesty - a *******ised type of viral marketing, a kind of non-profit pyramid scheme. The more someone gets involved in the site, the more power they get on it. When that happens, they'll tell their friends to come on the site and look at what they're doing. Our hope is that as the userbase grows, so will the site, and it'll result - possibly quite quickly - in the biggest and best Irish soccer site around.
What happens after that is anyone's guess. If the site gets that big, we'll *have* to find some way of paying for it, so we might introduce banner ads or sponsorship. But I'm saying this from the off - the site will *never* be run to generate revenue for ieWebs. Sure, it could be a nice demonstration of our talents as web developers, and we might get a couple of contracts out of it, but I don't see anything wrong with that. And to be fair, the same could easily happen with some of the people who get involved with the site.
Most importantly, the site will be run as a democracy of sorts. The development forum will stay; suggestions will be looked at; and there'll be regular meetings, online and offline, of moderators and administrators. If something is questionable, we'll take a vote on it. The voting will be weighted, but that won't be because of any power-hunger on my part - I won't need it anyway, since the site is on my servers - but because I think that's the best way to advance the site - mommy knows best.
"Have you any links to similar sites so we can see the idea in action?"
I'm not directly aware of any sites running exactly this model, only ones like it. There probably are, but this is An Orginal Dahamsta Idea[tm], I had it three years ago when I started working on corkcityfc.com. The closest we ever got to implementing it was last year, but it didn't work, and I think the reason it didn't work is because of the direct link we had with the club. We couldn't go all out, we couldn't say certain things. This site will have none of those problems.
There are parallels though. (You'll have to pardon the sites I'll mention here for being techie, but I'm a techie, what can you do?) The best one I can think of offhand is SourceForge (http://www.sourceforge.com). SourceForge is home to thousands of Open Source projects, that is programming projects that allow their code to be freely distributed. Hundreds of thousands of people collaborate every day on SourceForge, and the end result goes to the community, not into some rich software developers pocket.
On a content level, there's Slashdot (http://www.slashdot.org). Slashdot is a site where pretty much anyone can submit an article, which is then reviewed by the moderators and posted if it's good enough. When the article is published, people are able to post their own comments. It was started in much the same fashion as this site, and it's now one of the most succesful tech sites on the web. Not only that, but it continues as a non-profit site, supported by a company called VA Linux, who do it for the same reason we will - for the community. And of course a little marketing cream.
This site will primarily be modelled after Slashdot, since it will be a content site after all. However, we'll be coming at it from a slightly different angle, in that we'll have other features and content that users will be able to contribute to. They be able to help administer the club and player databases; they'll be able to submit match reports to a dedicated database; they'll be able to write and contribute their own features, photos, videos, and a lot more.
So how's that to get you started? I'll be going more and more into this as the site progresses, but that's a pretty good overview of what we have in mind. The most important factor here is that we're way ahead of the pack when it comes to being able to actually implement something like this. Myself, Joe and Gaz - in my opinion - put together one of the better Irish soccer sites last year, although we were somewhat hamstrung in implementing it.
We have the experience of doing that; we have the resources available to us; we answer questions honestly; and we're damn good at what we do - Gaz is a damn good designer who improves with every site; Joe is an excellent editor; and I'm a pretty good coder and developer, even if I do say so myself. And myself and Gaz run ieWebs in that manner too, so there's no chance of future conflicts of interest.
As I've said before, some people might view this as a pipe dream, but I don't think so. I honestly think it's possible, and if I get the support of the community, I'll fire a good wedge of my free time into it. But, also as I've said before, if I don't get the support, I don't want to know. We're providing the opportunity, but after that it's out of our hands.
Gods, I do go on don't I? :D
well that just about covers everything!
If still looking for a moderator for the $hel$ section i'll volunteer!
If I can find a fan or two of theirs I might have something to do too ;)
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