Hey everyone, Matt here.
I want to thank the entire community for the absolutely AWESOME response that we had to our Forum Structure Survey. Almost 400 people took the time to fill out the survey and pass across their feedback.
I want to spend a little bit of time sharing some major insights from the survey, and then let you know how we’re planning on acting on those insights:
The current forum structure is a little daunting.
We’ve known this for a while. But it’s been particularly great to hear specifics from people. The current structure was designed with a view to escape from the old world of eight totally different forums (which was difficult to moderate and use) and consolidate the authors together. We think we can improve upon this even further.
Authors find a lot of value in having conversations that are specifically relevant to one marketplace.
There’s nothing particularly mind-blowing about this, but these conversations can sometimes be difficult if there’s a lot of noise from authors in other marketplaces. An AudioJungle author doesn’t always care about a major WordPress update, but equally, a ThemeForest author doesn’t much want to listen to someone’s latest submission.
We think it should be as easy as possible for authors to find the posts that have the most relevance to them and their interests.
Folks find it enormously valuable to read Envato Announcements and Product Changes.
The forums are Envato’s primary communication tool between the staff and the authors and we believe in trying to keep this line of communication as strong as possible. We also believe that it’s incredibly important for authors to be able to discuss the changes that occur on our platform amongst themselves, ask questions and really decide what the changes mean for them.
**Insight 4: **
Discourse should feel a little more like home.
We’ve always wanted to make this place feel like Envato, and we think now is the time to make that happen. The current format is very white, can be a little cramped, and doesn’t put the authors front and centre. We think that needs to change.
**Insight 5: **
We need to give more power to the mods.
Our moderators are Heroes. They do an enormous amount of work on our forums, making sure the forums stay free of spam, and stepping in when conversations veer off track. We also know they do an enormous amount of work behind the scenes helping people with their different issues. We think we can do do a lot more work to support our moderators, and that they have a big role to play in shaping our forums in the long term.
You’ll note, there’s nothing particularly mind-blowing about these insights. We know there’s work to be done around here. What the survey has done is help us to prioritise this work.
Cool, so what are you going to do about it?
We’re breaking this down into three different projects.
1. A forum category restructure.
Categories in our Authoring Space will be named after the individual Envato Marketplaces. This will mean that our authors will be able to find the conversations and community members that are most relevant to them as quickly and as easily as possible.
We’re also going to be building out a separate category for Envato Announcements, which will allow authors to quickly and easily check-in to learn about official Envato Platform changes.
This part of the work will happen very shortly, within the next few weeks.
2. Customising the Discourse Forum platform to achieve a better look and feel.
Of course, we want to make sure that we consult with our authors on this. As a result, we’re going to be enlisting the help of a few community members to partner with us and ensure we get it absolutely right. We’ll also check in with the broader community to get feedback along the way.
This will take a little bit of time, but it’s a big priority for us. We’ll let you know as we get closer to the launch day.
3. Working to empower our mods.
This will be an ongoing project. It doesn’t necessarily ever really end. Our moderators are a big part of our team, and it’s time we treated them that way
As time goes by we’ll look to grow our team of moderators and empower them with new tools for steering the community.
Watch this space.
Exciting times are ahead for the Forums and everyone here has has a huge hand in shaping the direction that we’re moving in. We’re really excited to start making a few of these changes and show you folks what we’ve got in store.
If you have any questions, sing out below and we would be happy to answer them