1. A place where people do not feel victimized because they are new to the FT world.
2. A forum that is created for knowledge that may not conform normally.
3. Ensuring that fairness is developed when creating new forums. While one airline may be virtually unheard of in the USA, it may be the only option for other travelers elsewhere and it's important that all bases are covered.
4. That the most popular questions of a forum are made into an anchor list and very simple to navigate for either new people or others trying to find things quickly.
The following are qualitative criteria that the TalkBoard believes are useful to consider when evaluating proposals to create, close, split, or move forums. Whenever a forum change is discussed on the TalkBoard Topics, the TalkBoard encourages posters to fully address these criteria in addition to any other reasons supporting or opposing the change.
1. Will the forum be (or is it now) beneficial to FlyerTalk?
2. Will the new forum benefit a relationship with FlyerTalk? E.g., does the forum provide value for FT members, such as a friendly ear highly placed in the company
3. Is FT the best place to discuss this subject?
4. Is there a passionate following? This is essential in order to provide dedicated expert helpers to get questions answered.
5. Is a critical mass of posts and readers anticipated or existing? We need adequate traffic to keep everyone visiting frequently. One living forum is more valuable than two mostly dead ones.
6. Is this the best place on FlyerTalk for this subject? This is the classification issue. The answer depends primarily on achieving and maintaining critical mass. It also depends on whether or where the discussion might (or does) occur in the absence of the forum.
7. For proposals to split a forum, is the split expected to improve the signal to noise ratio? Why?
Procedural Statements by the TalkBoard
8. The TalkBoard does not anticipate using automatic sunsetting of forums, preferring instead to create forums only when we they are strongly expected to succeed.
9. At the end of each year, the TalkBoard President will ask the FlyerTalk Host for end-of-year forum activity metrics. Each February, the TalkBoard shall review the least-used forums for possible closure, based on the end-of-year metrics. Members should not expect public notice in advance of proposals to close forums due to the potential for manipulation of the metrics.
I consider these criteria to be a great success, one of the most useful things I've ever done for FlyerTalk. Approval of new forums has become routine, provided that the people proposing the forum have addressed these criteria. It's easier for the TalkBoard and more reliable for members who do their homework.
Programs: Over-Entitled COdbaUA-1kMM, HHGold, Giving Tootsie Pops to UA employees, & a retired hockey goalie
I agree with nsx's post but I would like to add that it also shouldn't take an act of Congress to get a decision made as sometimes it's a no-brainer (be it yay or nay) based on the criteria and/or data and spending too much time on a no-brainer takes one away from other more pressing issues.
Over-entitled 1k wondering how COdbaUA likes Flyertalk being its beta tester?
Programs: AMEX PLT, CO GL, UA 1P, National Executive, Avis Preferred, Hertz #1 Gold
I agree with nsx. But, I would like to add that every forum, current and new, to add a newbie thread. I have seen so many posts that flame new members for simply asking a question. And who can blame them, when there isn't a "Newbie" thread.
Programs: UA Mileage Plus, A3*S, Accor Plat, Global Entry
I also think that nsx hit the nail on the head with that. I think that the two biggest things there are:
1. Will the new forum be beneficial to Flyertalk. Is there really a need to create the new forum? And does it contribute to the overall greatness of this website.
2.Is there enough traffic to warrant a new forum. Will there be enough people posting if a new forum is created?
I would trust that the work that has been conducted by the Talk Board over the years as posted by NSX reflects well to the current operation of FlyerTalk..
Unanaimous approval of the last TalkBoard confirms agreement for the New Forum policy. I do not forsee major changes needed..
If minor tweeks and changes are necessary, I would consider the input of other Board Members, and how FT Members view the importance of adding a particular forum in question.
Its important to keep up with the sign of the times, and facilitate discussions of relevant programs on FlyerTalk, so that the forum will remain relevant to FT member's needs.
How would I consider policy change and/or adding new forums? I would weigh in on discussions amongst Talk Board members, and get feedback from members. Other data considered, would be demographics, geographics, and psychographics. Discussion would continue until an informal consensus is reached on the board. Hopefully, by the time the vote happens, all relevant information is considered, the policy changes developed, and the vote is a mere formality.
The vote would be less than 5% of the work.. the bulk of the work, would be in discussions, research, fact finding, stakeholder feedback, and consensus building..
I also agree with nsx. I think it would be great to expand the ambassador threads into all of the forums. Giving new members a place to get questions answered without getting flamed would be great, and prevent the duplication of questions within the forums.
I think the current criteria is fine, with a slight exception.
As a TalkBoard member, I would certainly "err" on the side of voting for a new forum and giving it a chance. (In other words, I feel the least comfortable with statement #8, above.) If the forum doesn't succeed, it can always be removed.
__________________ I'm a member of TalkBoard. Please send me a PM with any suggestions.
TalkBoard Member / Moderator: Alaska Mileage Plan; FlyerTalk Evangelist
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: MDT / Amtrak: MJY
Programs: UA 1K, AS MVPG, AA, AGR S+, HZ 5*, Nat'l Exec, Costco Exec, NPS Passport
I support the TalkBoard's current criteria as outlined above by nsx.
However, in some cases, it is indeed a "no-brainer" that a new forum should be created even if the exact criteria outlined above are not fully (or publicly) satisfied, and I have and would continue to support the creation of such forums.
The creation of the Sixt forum is a perfect example of this, which I supported given the heavy involvement on FlyerTalk by a small army of Sixt employees.