XenForo mastered the forum software. Now is time to go beyond with a road map.

Jake

Developer
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Jan 19, 2013
Messages
1,058
It is like I pay for Netflix, and they tell me I pay for the "security and stability" of the Netflix app, and I don't get to see the newest movie releases they have in their sortiment. I only get those from 2015 because that was the time I paid for it the first time. That is your angle right now making for XF, telling us that the fees people pay are for that (of course not exclusively, apart ticket support).
Doesn't seem super relevant to this thread, but I'm not sure the comparison you're trying to make. You do have to pay again to retain access to Netflix, you do it every month
 

DaveL

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Feb 4, 2007
Messages
1,414
It's a typical rubbish EU directive. All companies need to do, using XF is an example is to get rid of the 1 year extension, and just charge $110 for two years.
 

sbjsbj

Fan
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Feb 9, 2015
Messages
675
I have been keeping an eye on this thread but while we're taking the feedback on board, I don't think a deep and in-depth discussion about some of the points raised is productive for anyone, so I will pick a single comment and reply to that and that will be the last I have to say on the matter.
I understand and I thank you for hearing our voices. But I at least would like to see 2 points addressed. One, if XF has plans on adding more developers to the team. 2, if or when Kier and Mike will participate in the community again after being away for so long?

Except the UK won't be in the EU in 2021, so not quite!
Doesn't matter, the EU is not chained to UK. The rest of the EU will.
Also UK has already the digital act laws, so even if UK leaves, my points are still correct.

Doesn't seem super relevant to this thread, but I'm not sure the comparison you're trying to make. You do have to pay again to retain access to Netflix, you do it every month
Yep, exactly. But the point here is, when I do pay again to retain access, what do I get out of it? I get the latest and shiniest movie releases they have in their library, right?

The point being made was, that when we pay for XF renewal fees, that we shouldn't expect updates/upgrades in the sense of "new stuff". We should expect stability/security according to that person.

So, when I pay for Netflix, do I pay for the stability or security or what? No, I pay to get the newest stuff, while retaining my access to it.
So I would expect the same from a software company. If I keep paying them after I bought a license, then I just don't expect stability, but I expect new stuff too. Because according to the laws, I already have the right for stability and security, without paying further.
 

DaveL

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Feb 4, 2007
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I understand and I thank you for hearing our voices. But I at least would like to see 2 points addressed. One, if XF has plans on adding more developers to the team. 2, if or when Kier and Mike will participate in the community again after being away for so long?


Doesn't matter, the EU is not chained to UK. The rest of the EU will.
Also UK has already the digital act laws, so even if UK leaves, my points are still correct.


Yep, exactly. But the point here is, when I do pay again to retain access, what do I get out of it? I get the latest and shiniest movie releases they have in their library, right?

The point being made was, that when we pay for XF renewal fees, that we shouldn't expect updates/upgrades in the sense of "new stuff". We should expect stability/security according to that person.

So, when I pay for Netflix, do I pay for the stability or security or what? No, I pay to get the newest stuff, while retaining my access to it.
So I would expect the same from a software company. If I keep paying them after I bought a license, then I just don't expect stability, but I expect new stuff too. Because according to the laws, I already have the right for stability and security, without paying further.
You seem to think this is a good thing. You do realise that it's going to be a cost to the consumer.

Also, you're points are not correct, because when the UK leave the EU, our digital laws are totally different.
 

sbjsbj

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You seem to think this is a good thing. You do realise that it's going to be a cost to the consumer.

Also, you're points are not correct, because when the UK leave the EU, our digital laws are totally different.
Well, not my fault that the UK leaves, I wish they didn't but they thought they can pressure the EU and now they will bleed for this. I am sorry but that's life.

And no, the UK won't have totally different laws. Again, read your laws and compare it with the EU ones, more or less the same stuff anyway.
 

DaveL

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Feb 4, 2007
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Well, not my fault that the UK leaves, I wish they didn't but they thought they can pressure the EU and now they will bleed for this. I am sorry but that's life.

And no, the UK won't have totally different laws. Again, read your laws and compare it with the EU ones, more or less the same stuff anyway.
Brexit yada yada, crash and burn yada yada........ :sleep:
No , our current laws are not the same as the propsed EU directive.
 

sbjsbj

Fan
Joined
Feb 9, 2015
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675
;)

You know you don't have to renew, I'm sure you do know that though.
I know, that is what I am doing, altough my license is currently active right now. But I rather would renew and have some new stuff, instead of not renewing and have the same old thing.

Progress is important. We go backwards otherwise. Again, the internet is evolving and that in a fast manner. We have to be on par with it, if we want thriving communities. It is not good enough to stay on the same place. Forums doing that for 20 years now...
 

Steve

Fanatic
Joined
Apr 17, 2009
Messages
3,743
if we want thriving communities
Wouldn't good content be what is needed most?

Back to your hub idea, I don't really agree it's even a good idea. Seeing how there is going to be likely 10's or 100's of sites covering the same niche. To me it's always going to be content and a need that users want. You can put all your efforts in a flashy page you want but if the content or need isn't there people won't bother even registering.
 

palhanow

Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 23, 2016
Messages
168
I have been keeping an eye on this thread but while we're taking the feedback on board, I don't think a deep and in-depth discussion about some of the points raised is productive for anyone, so I will pick a single comment and reply to that and that will be the last I have to say on the matter. Conveniently, it was the very last point raised, but I believe it answers the fundamental question as well:

Thank you for the kind comments about what we have achieved so far with forum software. You're right, we've done a lot of good with our forum software and every step of the way we have worked towards a more stable, more extensible and more feature-rich experience for our customers.

But we have not "nailed it" as you put it. We never will. Nor will we ever stop trying. Our job isn't complete. Our job is to continue developing the software and beyond as we and our customers see fit.

We will not be publishing a roadmap and our stance on this has been made clear in the past. What we will do is make the process for making feature requests clearer, and aim to improve our transparency in terms of what we may be minded to work on in the future. Currently the things we are minded to work on, as demonstrated with XF 2.1, are the things that our customers have told us they want to see - those being the features that have been suggested and have significant backing.

We have a number of projects in the pipeline and we will have more to show you when they are nearly complete.
Thank you so very much for having the time to read and replying to us Chris.

I'm very happy to see that XenForo's Team work side by side with the Community.

I really understand your points about the roadmap and i see how this is complicated in the business terms.

Well, with roadmap or not, I'm still going to renew my license year by year. I can tell that my Forum is a success mostly because XenForo, my user base really loves the system and our intention with this thread is keeping the users in love with your software.
 

Karll

Adherent
Joined
Dec 9, 2011
Messages
444
Wouldn't good content be what is needed most?

Back to your hub idea, I don't really agree it's even a good idea. Seeing how there is going to be likely 10's or 100's of sites covering the same niche. To me it's always going to be content and a need that users want. You can put all your efforts in a flashy page you want but if the content or need isn't there people won't bother even registering.
Good content is great, but it's not going to help getting more users if they don't know about the good content. The hub idea can help with that aspect, i.e. discoverability / visibility, by possibly rewarding sites with popular content by highlighting trending threads/content/sites. You are right that with a single hub there would be multiple sites covering the same niches and competing about the same users. Personally, I would have preferred multiple competing hubs or networks with just one site per niche.
 
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Steve

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A hub sounds like it would only ever benefit sites that are most popular, traffic/views. My concern would be the valuable development time that this would require. You're not talking about a simple addition to the core here but a complete new system that would need managed.

It is somehow a bit frustrating to see people calling out the developers for not being more popular than some social networks and somehow blame a failing community on them. That is my biggest gripe here.
 

sbjsbj

Fan
Joined
Feb 9, 2015
Messages
675
Wouldn't good content be what is needed most?
Obviously yes, but that doesn't solve the main problem here, which is that people don't bother with forums anymore. It feels like you are walking the main street in your city and right and left you see shops and their showcases (these would be the SM sites and news sites). And in a back alley, somewhere hidden, you have forums.
We need more opportunities to display our content. Right now, you live or die with Google. And the cheapest, most useless Wordpress articles filled with keywords and h1 tags or whatever, outperforms forums. The SEO aspect is problematic, not as easy as having good content. My solution doesn't solve the content problem, as every site needs to take care of it. My solution would help channeling visitors in one place, which again would make forums popular again and have more opportunities to showcase their content. But you need content in first place anyway.

Back to your hub idea, I don't really agree it's even a good idea. Seeing how there is going to be likely 10's or 100's of sites covering the same niche. To me it's always going to be content and a need that users want. You can put all your efforts in a flashy page you want but if the content or need isn't there people won't bother even registering.
Agree. But see reddit. In reddit the same problem exists, people say all the time in every hot topic "repost, repost, repost" or "recycled".
So reposts and recyled content will always be there in such case, that is inevitable. But again, the upvote system would cover that problem as good as it can. Upvote system would filter out reposts, which is exactly what is happening in reddit. Most of the stuff you are not aware of, because downvoted or not upvoted enough. So there is a solution for that.

However, if you still think the idea is not a good idea, I understand, no problem. I think it would help a lot but of course I am open for modifications of the idea or for other and better ideas. I just wanted to be constructive, that is all. It is utopia and hypothetical anyway, no hard feelings.
 

sbjsbj

Fan
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Feb 9, 2015
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Personally, I would have preferred multiple competing hubs or networks with just one site per niche.
But that is possible with the hub idea, see reddit.
Reddit's mainpage is configured like that. All your subscribed subreddits are streamed in the mainpage. So every user has individual hubs on reddit based on their subscribed subreddits.

However the reddit/r/all subreddit displays all stuff across from everywhere. So there you have everyone competing against each other.
On the mainpage any user can configure their hub however they like. They have 1 preffered forum for gaming? No problem, subscribe to it and it shows that and nothing else anyway, as long as you are not subscribed to other gaming forums.

A hub sounds like it would only ever benefit sites that are most popular, traffic/views.
It sounds like that, but that is not the case. If you follow reddit, any subreddit has a chance. And specially by word of mouth people discover new subreddits. I for example discovered many subreddits like that just in the comments of popular subreddits or popular topics. It gives you an eco-system that everyone can get heard of.

My concern would be the valuable development time that this would require. You're not talking about a simple addition to the core here but a complete new system that would need managed.
Exactly. The idea is massive. It would need serious investment. I would say the time XF put into 2.0, they would need 5x more time to create the hub.
Again, my idea is just hypothetical. Unless some billionaire or big company buys XF or a forum software, we will never see that kind of investment in the forum scene. The teams are just too small, the vision is just too short. They already make big money right now, why change a running system? Coasting is much safer and you need to invest a lot less time

It is somehow a bit frustrating to see people calling out the developers for not being more popular than some social networks and somehow blame a failing community on them. That is my biggest gripe here.
I hope this is not directed at me but even if it does. That is absolutely not true. The failing community part can be because of many reasons. Nobody blames the developers for that. However, if the infrastucture of your system is not on par with modern times, you have it much harder. It is a fact. Imagine for not a long time ago, you couldn't upload a video from your phone into the forum. Where 50% of visitors right now are on mobile phones and you don't have that, is a problem.
Again, it doesn't solve the content problem, but not everything is about content here. You need to give users the same things they know from other sites. Being outdated is a big problem.
 

zappaDPJ

Administrator
Joined
Aug 26, 2010
Messages
7,321
Back to your hub idea, I don't really agree it's even a good idea. Seeing how there is going to be likely 10's or 100's of sites covering the same niche. To me it's always going to be content and a need that users want. You can put all your efforts in a flashy page you want but if the content or need isn't there people won't bother even registering.
This is probably not going to be voted idea of the year but I would like to see XenForo develop an app with push notification. I'd give licence holders the option of listing their forum on the app and allow it to be searchable e.g. you search the app for 'taxidermy' and get hits from multiple forums.

If it's accepted that a forum has a limited number of members why not expose all members to all forums. Is there any disadvantage to one user posting on multiple sites even if they are all covering the same niche?
 

haqzore

Devotee
Joined
Dec 6, 2012
Messages
2,383
If it's accepted that a forum has a limited number of members why not expose all members to all forums. Is there any disadvantage to one user posting on multiple sites even if they are all covering the same niche?
This is a good point.

Is generally accepted that niche forums are the best chance of survival, while "general discussion" forums have a near-zero chance.

So a grouping of niche forums? Why not?
 

Xon

Developer
Joined
Feb 15, 2015
Messages
309
XF Enhanced Search now costs $55 (it was a little cheaper back when I purchased it) and ElasticSearch Essentials costs $30. ElasticSearch itself is free and open-source. It does require a good chunk of memory (or else you will face the wrath of the Linux OOM killer), so I had to bump up my VPS hosting plan to 4Gb RAM.
FYI, but you can configure elasticsearch (/etc/elasticsearch/jvm.options set the -Xms & -Xmx arguments) to use much less memory than the out-of-the-box configuration and still get quite decent performance even for active forums.
 

MagicalAzareal

Magical Developer
Joined
Apr 25, 2019
Messages
737
Unless some billionaire or big company buys XF or a forum software, we will never see that kind of investment in the forum scene.
Is Microsoft not a big enough company for you? Spectrum.

It's not very traditional, but it can be self-hosted and Microsoft has quite the serious money.
 

palhanow

Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 23, 2016
Messages
168
FYI, but you can configure elasticsearch (/etc/elasticsearch/jvm.options set the -Xms & -Xmx arguments) to use much less memory than the out-of-the-box configuration and still get quite decent performance even for active forums.
Uow! Xon is here too.

This Forum is like a celebrity meeting point.

Nice to see you here man, i love your addons! (Btw, there is some very nice plugins ideas around this thread).
 
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