Does Sansar Need an Independently-Run Discussion Forum?

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Discussion and debate are the lifeblood of any community (photo by rawpixel on Unsplash)

It seems ludicrously early to be even talking about the possibility, but given the sometimes heavy-handed moderation happening lately on the official Sansar Discord server, perhaps this is an idea that merits some discussion now.

I have noticed that usage of the Sansar Discord server has dropped a fair bit over the past year, especially when compared to the early days, when there were many free-wheeling discussions on a variety of topics, of interest to many people. At times, it was a bit of a free-for-all, but it was always entertaining to watch (and participate in). It was fun!

But lately, it feels like you can’t go more than a few sentences into a conversation on Discord without Harley or Eliot stepping in to ask the participants to take it to another channel, or to direct messaging. Frankly, it’s dampening the spirit of the place, and I do not like it one bit.

The long-running (and still popular) SLUniverse.com is an example of an independently-run discussion forum where people can safely vent on any number of topics related to Second Life, OpenSim, and other virtual worlds, without fear of official reprisal from Linden Lab. Is it time to set something like SLUniverse up for Sansar? Maybe it is.

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SLUniverse Discussion Forums

Or maybe we should all move wholesale over to SLUniverse, they do already have a Sansar forum (although it’s not heavily used).

What do you think? Sound off in the comments!

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2 thoughts on “Does Sansar Need an Independently-Run Discussion Forum?”

  1. I have not posted on the official discord since the day a user got scolded for typing three paragraphs in a row. I only use the emotes now. I miss trying to help people when they ask technical questions, but I just can’t stand the pressure.

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  2. I’d rather LL develop time and effect into developing a “Sansar Community platform” that is properly identifiable as being PART of Sansar, and where users are made to feel welcome, rather than having them to run off elsewhere.

    If moderation really is being seen as an issue on the Discord channel – I have no idea as I’m rarely there as I personally find it a PITA (and have many reservations about its scalability, but that’s another subject entirely!) – then I’d suggest that is something that needs to be directly taken up with the Lab in an attempt to have it addressed, rather than running off elsewhere as a first response. The SL forums went through a similar “dark time” (2008-2010-ish) but came out the other side better and stronger and with more active engagement. The same should be sought with Sansar.

    Consider the benefits of getting a well-run, reasonably moderated in-house forum environment where LL staff can pitch in with comments, initiate threads and topics, set out discussions on features and ideas, etc; as opposed to having an entirely separate forum environment run by users where people might well be able to say what they want, but where, by dint of company policy, “official” feedback / input by LL staff might not be allowed.

    Frankly, given the amount LL have invested in the likes of Lithium and JIRA for Second Life, I remained stunned as to why these tools – and the in-house expertise the Lab has in managing them – wasn’t leveraged over Sansar’s early development to start to provide the kind of community and technical support environments that the platform needs, and which feel part and parcel of the Sansar brand.

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