I've been thinking alot about message boards in a social context (I hang out at poe-news.com quite a bit).
My ideas involve getting the message board system to change to the communities needs. A large-ish group of 2000 posters is dependant on the admin, but could a polling system help guide the board, letting ideas and request trickle up to affect the entire board? And how would this work...
February 3, 2004 12:52 PM
I share your disappointment with Orkut. I know this is still alpha software, but at this stage of development, the sheer ugliness of its design won't be fixed by nifty add-ons and CSS sheets.
They have no excuse. They came after Tribe.net, which despite its numerous technical weaknesses offers a more humane view of social software. One important feature that Orkut overlooked are what they call "Communities". They accurately noticed that Tribsters used them as aggregators for their peculiar interests, and even improved that feature. But they missed the fact that Tribsters actually used them as meeting places, and evaluating places, in the "fuzzy" ways of conversations. Orkut's Communities are basically unusable. So we wait alone for random people to ask us if we want to be their friends, always answering 'yes' because there's nothing else to do there. A friend of mine said he prefers Orkut's interface because it's cleaner than Tribe's. I answered that I prefer the messiness of the later: it doesn't stand as much as Orkut's in the way of my actions. If we want to go on Deleuzean concepts there, Orkut's is a damn binary machine. Sexuality: "Straight" or "Gay" or "Bi"? Friend: "Yes" or "No"? Guy: "Interesting" or "Hot" or "Crush"? Tskkk...
I guess I'll stick to Tribe.net for a while.
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