[KM-Forum] Best Practices for the Online Discussion Forum

Ravi Nandhan ravinandhan at gmail.com
Mon Jun 30 12:16:20 IST 2008


Hi,

Apologies for the long post. Though my professional friends gave me
thier peice of thought, I wanted to know about these things from
others as well.

In the world of 2.0s it is good to notice and organize even the bit of
information which lies in Discussions and other areas? Since
discussions are one of the ways to get the Tacit Knowledge Explicited,
but same time we need to make sure that we manage it properly.

It would be great if you could please help me with the Online
Discussion Forums "Mail list & Web based discussions" Effective usage,
search and organizing techniques, case studies, best practices etc.

In mailing list the user posts a query and every member gets a mail
and a few would answer replying everyone through the forum or
personally to the user. In the web based discussion, there will be a
space on web for users to discuss.

In both the cases the information that lies in the discussion thread
is lies under a broad category of its taxonomy. Or is there any other
metadata format to organize the topics? Would it help to have
folksonomy apart from Taxonomy while posting as well? After questions
are answered, is it possible to tag each and every post to its context
which induces retrieval?

Archive feature?
If the discussions are old and not used at all? Is it good to Archive
or Delete? If archived, does the search retrieve it?

Publicizing the Discussion Forums – How can we market the forum? How
does a User know its existence and arrive at it?

Language barriers? User posts in English but a few would not know
English. Is there any way to overcome this - translate service? (If
you feel this question is too much consider this Web 3.0 or 4.0 tech)

Search – is Categorized search results possible for Forums? In my
understanding most searches in forums retrieves based on relevance.

RSS usage – to stay in track of the posts – answers.
If a user posts a query it may take a few days to get the answers,
meanwhile the user may forget about the question he posted. How to get
the user view the answers? RSS or Email alert? Which is best for
keeping the user and Q&A in Loop?

Could moderators be engaged in a mediator's role for Q&A instead of
just having them for approving posts? Moderators are expected to be
good in subject understanding but in corporates such people are busy
to take up additional role of Mediated-Moderator.

User might not know the existence of the answers that are available in
the earlier posts and posts the same question for which the experts
might not answer knowing its existence. How to over come this problem?
As soon as the post is submitted can we make the system suggest the
user to have the existing answers checked and proceed to post the same
question? Does this help?

Regards,
Ravi

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