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On Fri, Aug 31, 2012 at 01:21:41PM +0100, Tom Davies wrote:
I think the idea is to have a forum alongside the mailing-lists.  


Many people find forums easier to understand or have more experience with
them from using them in other projects.

Yes, that is a big plus for forums: the lower barrier to entry.

Others prefer mailing lists. So, it's good to have both to avoid pushing
people away. 

That depends. I would indeed also consider to close down mailing lists under
certain circumstances and only offer the forum. This is because it is very
unhelpful if a (sub)project splits up in the marketing-list-guys and the
marketing-forum-guys -- just as you said most prefer one medium over the other
and thus will not know what is going on "over there" in the other media.

As a forum have a lower barrier to entry, it makes sense to have them for all
areas of the project, even if the mail activity is usually on a mailing list.
Essentially, such a forum has the only propose to not miss out those guys and
lure them on the mailing list in the end. Thats what I assume for development.

There are other part of the project (closer to the users of the product), where
I assume the majority of posts happening on the forum and not on the mailing
list. In those cases, the mailing list would be unhelpful in the end: It has a
higher barrier to entry and needlessly fragmentizes communication. In these
cases, I would propose to close down the user list.

With "Closing down", I mean we still need to take care of making the migration
as soft and smooth as possible:
- announce that the list will be "closed" in favor of the forum in 3-6(?) month
  on the list
- possibly make the forum send copies of the posts to the mailing list on
  switchover date (as a mailing list is a nice mirrored archive and google will
  never forget anything)
- make the list readonly on switchover date

I imagine that to happen for and from the start. For other lists (design,
marketing, documentation, etc.) we have to wait and see if the majority of
communication stays on the list or moves to the forum. If the majority moves to
the forum for a specific subproject, I would suggest to close the list too, as
otherwise it will fragmentize the community.



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