I'd like to share my frank views. I completely agree that the forum is unique and very special and, as I have said often enough, it was what attracted me to join as a member over a decade ago. Contrary to the belief that it is spiralling down, there has been considerable improvement overall in terms of interesting topics and better forum etiquette.
It seems that a majority of members are under the impression that the forum section is looked down upon by the admin. The truth is that while the admin. considers the forum to be the heart of ISC, at the same time is keen that members don't focus only on the forum, but contribute to other sections equally. Nor was the forum merely created for ad placement, but a platform for discussions and for improving writing and English skills. By the way, the topic of discussion in this thread is not the popularity of the forum or lack thereof, but our approach to responding with only a single response to a thread. It is also incorrect to believe that moving towards the new niche is discouraging general topics. Was there an announcement that even forum topics should be restricted to that niche? Please let us know if this was indeed so and we'll discuss it with the admin.
I personally do not think that the 10-day life of a thread should be an impediment to continuing to respond. How many of us even bother to go beyond the first page of the forum? Do we check the threads on the second and third pages which are still not over 10 days old? Do we bother to check if there was some other aspect that we could discuss with a further response or if there was a response that we could react to and discuss? Similarly, the limit on the number of threads that can be posted should surely not be a hurdle to giving multiple responses to a thread. Putting up a thread and responding to existing threads are not related, is it?
I do not support the idea of selecting the best thread and the best response on a daily basis. This perhaps will make the forum a less spontaneous platform. We will then be planning and thinking of topics instead of coming up with topics that sort of just pop up in our minds.
Yes, we do not benefit from points when responding in our own threads. This was because of the strategic and obvious game of a few members, trying to get a lot of points just to get RSB. See, if we try to be unethical, it, unfortunately, becomes necessary to "police" the activity. In fact, even stereotypical threads could also be part of that strategy, namely, just come up with any topic to get five points, no matter that the topic is not really discussion-worthy. I agree that such threads will not generate second or third responses, perhaps not even an initial one.
I will bring up the issue of best responses not getting cc with the forum editing team. That I feel we should definitely consider hereon. At the same time, we will not give cc merely because the thread author marked it so, but we will consider it from the point of view of relevance to the topic and quality. Although the forum is not meant to be monitored 24x7, I would like to inform members that since the last few months I have assigned the task to a few editors of making a round of the forum from time to time, ensuring cc is given to good threads and responses. I think some of you may have realized it when used the recalculate feature.
And just for the record - that comment about a cold shoulder towards K Mohan was unwarranted. He has been genuinely applauded and deservedly rewarded.
When you make a commitment, you create hope. When you keep a commitment you create trust! ~ John C. Maxwell