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The new personal development forums have now been online for almost 16 hours, and so far everything is looking great.
There are already over 370 registered members and over 1100 posts. The forums are really bustling with activity on a variety of personal development topics. Erin and I have both been popping in and out of some interesting discussions.
So far the server is handling the load just fine. This morning there was a swell of traffic where the forums saw 435 visitors online at once, and the server load remained at a reasonable level. I’ve found it to be very fast and responsive. For the past few hours, there have typically been about 100 people viewing the forums at any one time, but I suspect that will quickly grow over the next few days.
New replacement for blog comments
One cool new feature is that every blog post I make from now on will be syndicated in the Steve Pavlina forum within 10 minutes. This means that a new forum thread is automatically created with the title of the blog post. For example, for this post a thread will be created with the title “Forums Off to a Strong Start (Blog).” The word “(Blog)” is tacked onto the title of every forum thread that’s syndicated from the blog, so they’ll be easy to distinguish from threads started by other members.
I feel this is a great replacement for blog comments, which I turned off nearly a year ago for the reasons stated here and here. With the forums I don’t have to worry about comment spam, and I don’t have to personally moderate comments since they now fall under the domain of the forum moderators. Forum posts are instantly approved by default, so discussions will be more efficient than when I was manually approving blog comments. The forums require a one-time free registration to be able to post, which shouldn’t discourage long-term visitors who really want to discuss these topics, but which should be just enough to deter most drive-by trolls. Furthermore, the forums have a ton of features that make online discussions far superior to any blog commenting system I’ve seen, regardless of the number of plug-ins.
So I’m happy to say that the discussion doors are open once again.
Erin and I are both excited (and relieved!) to see this launch go so well. We feel very fortunate to be able to establish a place where like-minded people can help each other grow 24/7. These forums are a unique and special place, and we’ll do our best to care for them.