In which we answer the burning question “Why does TSL have two board systems?” and more.
Why does TechSideline.com have two board systems?
Oh, man, you don’t really want the whole story do you? Here’s the Cliff’s Notes version: From 1997 to early 2012, we had a threaded board system, like this. It was very popular. In January 2012, concerned about the aging custom code of our board system, we converted to a vBulletin board system.
1/3rd of our site visitors left immediately and never came back.
Even after 18 months, a significant portion of our visitors still wanted to see the return of the threaded boards, so we dusted off the code, modernized it, and brought it back to life, called them “Chat Boards”, and installed them alongside the “vBulletin Forums”.
What’s the difference?
Other than the obvious? The threaded chat boards are good for rapid-fire discussion, one-liners, in-game commentary, and seeing a bunch of info at once (a lot like Twitter, actually). The vBulletin system is good for in-depth, long form discussion.
Also, the vBulletin system maintains all of your posting history, while each chat board is limited to 10,000 posts — older posts are deleted as new posts are made.
Which boards should I use?
Don’t know. Depends upon what you like. Check out both, and do as you wish: visit one, the other, or both regularly.
That’s really stupid.
Hey! Be nice. Also … that’s not a question.
Aren’t you worried that will split your user base among too many boards?
Twitter and numerous competitive web sites have already done that. We just want to give our site visitors options, within the TSL umbrella, to find what they like.
I’m afraid my favorite board system will die out, because you were dumb enough to have two systems.
Well then, get involved in the discussion! It’s not our responsibility to keep your favorite board system “alive.” It’s yours! Visit often, and post often, and make it lively and interesting.
For the record, we think enough people visit this site, and enough people like both board systems, that they’ll do fine.
Tell the truth: you’re pitting the board systems against each other, and you’ll kill off the one that has less traffic.
Wrong. And you really need to get back to asking questions, not making statements.
Do the two board systems share posts?
No. They are two completely separate board systems, on two completely separate databases.
Where will TSL staff be posting?
Everywhere. Here, there, on the site, in the comments area below articles, on Facebook, on Twitter, at Champs Sports Bar in Blacksburg, you name it. Wherever you are, we’ll be there.
Where should I go to see the gurus posting?
Don’t know. We don’t tell the gurus what to do, so they’ll go where they feel most comfortable.
How did you decide to put what boards … where?
Here’s the rundown — scroll down below the table to read our reasoning:
|TSL Pass Subscribers-Only|
|TSL Pass Recruiting|
|TSL Pass Ticket Exchange|
|Men's Basketball Board|
|Other Sports Board|
TSL Pass Subscribers-Only and Recruiting: Both board systems get these boards, because we’re not going to short-change any of our subscribers.
Football Board, Men’s Basketball Board, and Other Sports Board: Both board systems get these boards.
Conference Realignment Board: This is on the vBulletin system only, because this topic is one that lends itself to long-term, in-depth discussion. If you’re on the chat boards and want to talk conference realignment, feel free to do so on the Football Board or Subscribers-Only Board.
Ticket Exchange: Buying and selling tickets was a monumental flop on the vBulletin boards. Hardly anyone even tried there. So the only dedicated ticket exchanges are in the chat board system.
Off-Topic Board (The Lounge): Honestly, lounge lizards like both vBulletin and threaded, so we put an off-topic board on each system. We’re not even sure if we should call either one or both of them “The Lounge.” We suspect it will work itself out.
- In-Game Chat: This is right in the chat board’s wheelhouse — fire away during games, wherever you want. On the vBulletin boards, in-game threads can be set up on a per-game basis, and in-game discussions can be confined to those threads.
- Women’s Basketball Board: This board only averaged 2.17 posts per day, so we deleted it. You can discuss women’s basketball on the Other Sports Boards.
- Pro Sports and Hokies in the Pros: This board averaged less than a post a day. Discuss on the appropriate sports board.
- Student Ticket Exchange: Hardly ever used, so we deleted it.