What's that got to do with recommending stuff you own?
Review: The Audiogon Discussion Forum itself 😉
To generalize, I think there are features on this forum that are useful and well implemented. It’s pretty easy to follow any discussions that you want, and there’s several ways to look at recent activity. This forum has a great wealth of experiential knowledge and is one of the best online places to discuss ideas, have fun, and get feedback from others. End of review.
The main reason for this post is really to engage with the Audiogon website creators and provide them feedback on how the participants/users see potential improvements. I would @-mention them here if I knew who they were...
Better forum experience > more community engagement > more new users > more revenue for Audiogon > more budget for improvements > better forum experience > etc....
I’ll start with my own website improvement suggestions, and I invite others to discuss them and to add their own:
1. A new forum topic for this very thing. An example of a name is "Community Feedback." This could also function as a public support forum.
2. A new functionality for polls to be created by a new discussion starter. Out of all of my ideas, I think this one is the most interesting and will get the most rapid increase in overall engagement. The Telegram mobile app has the ideal version of this, in my opinion. Their implementation is exceptional and if Audiogon could get anywhere near that level of functionality, programming refinement, and real-time results updating on a bar chart of the answers and percentages, it would be sure to impress. Twitter’s implementation is more simplistic, but it works. The main features on Telegram are 1) "Ask a question" field, 2) define up to 10 answer options, 3) choose whether the answers show up as anonymous or reveal who chose which answer, 4) choose whether multiple answers are allowed (advanced option, infrequently used), 5) quiz mode where poll creator defines a correct answer which is visible after choosing an answer (advanced option, infrequently used).
3. A functionality to tag manufacturers in any post, including original posts that start discussions. Make it a drop-down where the user must choose an existing manufacturer tag to avoid misspellings. Make the tag small but visible on every individual post. Then implement a tag filter functionality into both searches and the forum browser. There could be a question that must be answered before submitting the post that says "Do you want to add a tag".
Allow anyone to follow manufacturer tags, just like they can follow specific discussions. I’m sure many users and dealers and especially manufacturers themselves would love this.
This tag functionality could be expanded to include many other things, and even re-work the way the forum is organized and searched. However, it can add a burden of complexity if not well implemented. I originally thought that dedicated sub-topics for manufacturers was the way to go, but I think that can lead to some fragmentation across different topics and unduly increase complexity.
4. In addition to displaying the Audiogon Insider icon/symbol next to usernames, do icons for Audiogon staff, dealers and manufacturer reps. Those people should have their business details displayed in their user profile. I think people with financial interests should be identified for the sake of integrity of communication. It would be ideal to make that icon show up in the drop-down menu when @-mentioning a forum member, too. Perhaps even allow a filter within the @-mention drop-down menu for different icons.
5. The @-mentioning system doesn’t work for a lot of people because they don’t know that selecting from the drop-down menu is required to get the blue text which links to the user profile and send them a notification of the mention. I’d like to see the system auto-fill a hyperlink for a correctly typed @ symbol followed by a username, without the need to select the name from the drop-down menu.
6. Perhaps adding a new topic where only verified manufacturers can start new discussion would increase manufacturer engagement and give them a place to do marketing as well. New product coming this quarter? Want another way to increase brand awareness and jump-start word of mouth marketing? Do a teaser on the Audiogon Discussion Forum, tell people to follow that discussion for updates, then follow up later with more substantial announcements.
That’s all for now. Thoughts?
Some good ideas. If you want admins to read it, you're better off sending it directly through the support/contact link on the home page.
Many of these ideas have been proposed multiple times by other members and we haven't gotten much or any reply from management. Tammy is the only one I know by name, and that overloaded, wonderful lady, seems to have her hands full dealing with spam, vitriol etc and just trying to keep things a bit less like the wild west. Cheers,
@fuzztone Huh? Is that a statement about what you see as a problematic pattern with forum contributors? Or perhaps a passive-aggressive judgment about how you perceive my posts? Or am I misreading your intention with that comment? It seems pretty tangential nonetheless
I realize there must be some difficulty in getting dealers and manufacturers to identify themselves, along with the extra work of Audiogon staff verifying such things. But perhaps by adding additional functionality which requires having those icons by their usernames, such as the idea in #6 above, incentive for them to come forward about it would be offered.
I think you are right when considering my points #4 and #6, and also that it’s a simplistic conclusion and a restrictive viewpoint of what’s possible.
There’s endless numbers of businesses that lean on or rely on Twitter communications for a large portion of their marketing and community outreach efforts. To me, it’s not about any absolute stance on what most people favor within the context of the current state of affairs, it’s about what’s possible with the right vision, proper design and engineering, balanced economic incentives, and recognizing the market needs. Some mfgs don’t need anything more. What about those who are actively looking to expand and market? What about new ones? How about established ones that have developed new tech and want to reach out to like-minded people who aren’t limited to the blathering "faux internet experts", but actually includes their clientele?
@juanmanuelfangioii I made about 10 different points and described each of them in detail. What's your point?
Mine is more personal I would like to know why I have been cut off from posting a topic for discussion? This happened today after last night when I answered the OP's request to give the best and worst company's customer support?
Also, what does "body p" mean which appears whenever I type a response before it is posted, but not when it is posted, just curious.
One area which I would love to find an elegant solution is sharing info on great music . like I am most grateful for the mention about the singer Dominique Fils-Aime, who I did not know, on a recent discussion about speakers positioning.
Talking about discovering singers, one of my latest ones is the Canadian born singer/ songwriter Michelle Gurevic. She records her own material, refusing to deal with any stable she’d record label, hence her songs have great lyrics and musicality but are not audiophile material.
One exception is the Roon discussion forum, where a few company reps do regularly participate. They're generally not coming in to "debate", but to offer solutions or insights into specific issues.
@gladmo Thanks for taking the time to make suggestions for this forum. There are enough people engaged here to justify improvements, for sure.
Tagging is an incredibly powerful tool which would help, here. I've suggested it at my university to help students searching for the right courses. Often, a course might be full, but simply following relevant tags could lead them to other classes which might interest and benefit them. Same would apply here on A'gon.
@jgueron - I've also got a favorite musician like that, named Kristeen Young. She records and produces and writes and sings her own material, but also distributes it as she won't compromise her art and won't deal with record label B.S. While not 'audiophile' quality, her records do sound really good, and she's just released her 11th album since 1997..... Very unique music and lyrics...
The forums seem the cleanest of late that they have been in a long time, maybe ever, and I find that refreshing. I get the impression the owners finally came to their senses and finally decided to crack down on abusers thereby making this a better place for more. Hopefully not too late and I also hope this becomes more of a trend in the world in general and not just here. Lots of abusers out there working hard at all levels these days. Some merely make excuses for others they relate to in some way but overall people expect law and order and those who violate that must be held accountable.
Yes, AC has the various Mfg's circles which are dedicated to the Mfg and the [posters are mostly owners of such equipment or interested in owning. I believe the mfg is also the moderator of his/her circle. IOW AC system and layout is nothing like Audiogon
I'm not sure but they may be able to do that now. But then too, advertising a for sale product is against Agon rules. Besides that, they can offer it for sale on the Agon sales pages. This is the way that Agon makes their $$$. That is the business model. The forums are a freebie thrown out as a gathering place for potential buyers.
Then too, many of the new posters may not really be potential buyers of the gear that Agon was originally set up to sell for the profit margin needed.That being high end audiophile grade audio gear. They work on a percentage of the sales that go through Agon. IOW the commission on a $500 sale is much lower than on a $5000 sale. I have been here over 20 yrs and can see how there are many more $500 sales now than $5k. This was not always the case.
The last paragraph is based on my lifelong experience running a business and is only an observation. IOW a guess based on observation...Science. Before you jump on me for being a snob, I Don't have $5k to spend on a single piece either. But I learned to be a good shopper and climb the ladder a step at a time. it was my priority due to my love affair with music
@mapman Yes, so much better these days! Also starting to notice more new posters with valuable input, perhaps a kinder, gentler Audiogon will entice more to contribute. The round and round endless political crap belongs elsewhere, as well as the constant provocations! This is an audio forum, plenty of forums for political and psychologically affected individuals.
I also see lot more manufacturers input on Audiophilesyle forum, even white papers included over there. I get the sense people don't like long form posts here as this forum more of a generalist bent. Getting too far into the 'weeds' with the technical isn't much appreciated here.
Daily visitor and seldom post anything, but enjoy following threads that either educate or that contribute equipment experience and opinions. I have followed Audiogon daily since inception (about 25 yrs).
A couple things bother me:
1.When revisiting a thread, Audiogon does not remember where I left off and always defaults to page one.
this is my rant,