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Monday 22 October 2007 10.49am
Before this turns into a flame war (please be nice to each other, folks), a few points relating to the original post.

If what you're talking about is a modern hybrid of the community centre/coffee house debate/village pump for local discussion/gossip/information exchange, why pre-load the concept with terms relating to electronic publishing?

Why "discuss issues with other bloggers" and not just "other people"?

(And I'd argue that participating in a discussion forum isn't "blogging".)

JonR said "Nobody knows who we realy are" - online forums mean that conversations can take place between people of completely different social backgrounds, generations etc who would be unlikely to converse in another situation.

These days an internet connection is a fairly low barrier to entry.

To me, one of the good things about forums like this is that the discussions are archived for posterity and not just 'lost' in the way that a face-to-face conversation (or a public meeting) would be.

How could that sense of permanence be achieved in a 'forum' housed in a building?

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Monday 22 October 2007 11.24am
Hear, hear.
Monday 22 October 2007 12.15pm
I'm a bit sad that some people think that we are cliquey. We are really open to all comers, we are delighted if someone becomes a "regular", but no way are we unfriendly to our "occasional posters". True, some of us post every day about everything, (probably you will think we dont have lives) and others dip in now and again or disappear for what? The Forum is a great organ, and has given ideas, help, and fun to lots of the Se1s. No slurs please.
Monday 22 October 2007 1.19pm
Taking part in the forum is a bit like having the radio on in the background, its a medium where you are almost always doing something else at the same time, ( in my case work ) sometimes focusing in on the interesting bits every now and again as they come up. That it is not that important is its strength.

A building for discussion puts it all on a formality which would stifle the casual but well informed chat we have. At the few SE1 socials I have been to, there is plenty of discussion, but never in the linear style of a recorded forum debate like this, and not on the forum topics either. Thank goodness. In a face to face discussion socialising takes precedent.
Monday 22 October 2007 4.12pm
There are plenty of physical discussion forums in the area. WCDG tonight for example. Also the South Bank Forum.

I think it depends on what you are looking for. I have found a plumber and a piano through this site, have gone to see plays and book readings and other things that I would not otherwise have done. I know about Banksy, Driscoll House, Bermondsay Abbey, merkins,and local pillar boxes. I have met some good people, would love to meet others (Jan!), made cider, and have found some good restaurants. All of which has helped me enjoy living in the area, and feel part of the area.

There are issues. Perhaps best summed up by James' exhortation to be nice. I have heard elsewhere that this site is often regarded as one of the the best if not the best community website in Britain. We are very lucky.
Monday 22 October 2007 6.23pm
I don't live in SE1; or London, or the U.K.!

I found this forum by accident, years ago, and I still maintain it's one of the best forums I've ever visited - it was also my first. I've been around the block a bit since then.

As an occasional and enthusiastic visitor to London, I found it great to be able to get a 'feel' of the area, by reading the posts on here. Grant it, I'm an odd sort of tourist - I find Tesco Borough more interesting than Madame Tussauds!

I've always been impressed by this site - there seems to be a true community vibe about the place, and I always admired the Venerable Mr Hatts' ability to keep things in line, without being in any way over-bearing.

A place is only as good as the people in it, and SE1 is a very good place indeed!
Thursday 25 October 2007 11.09am
Thankyou for all of your advice and very valid points, they have really helped to question whther such a building would be a good idea.

Apologies if the first email sounded impolite. Also, I didn't mean to segregate people that post on this site when calling you bloggers, sometimes I am not very articulate!

I too would compliment what a wonderful forum this is. when i first read some of the posts I found it fascinating, people in the area are so passionate about things happening.

James is right about the fact that this sight has prosperity. I don't think the benefit of prosperity would be achieved in a building. What the building could do is make others aware of this SE1 community so that they could also participate. The building could serve a number of functions.

whilst internet forums are great i think there is a danger forums in the future reducing the art of conversation. The world is dramatically changing and face to face meetings can easily be avoided. posts are great but you cannot see the expressions and posts can be misread.

a building would make people aware of the forum, after reading all of your posts, you are right, it could not replace the forum, merely supplement it.

hope this makes any sense? thanks to all, you have really helped to push and constructively criticise the original idea

Thursday 25 October 2007 12.08pm
flissdavies wrote:
James is right about the fact that this sight has prosperity.
hope this makes any sense?


I can see why OP would prefer the forum to be offline.

Forum Rules wrote:
We encourage forum users to maintain a high standard of English. Text-speak should be avoided.
Thursday 25 October 2007 12.29pm
James Hatts wrote:
Before this turns into a flame war (please be nice to each other, folks),

Mapmaker, it would be a nice surprise if you could follow some of the 'rules' yourself, before posting snide sounding criticism - and little else. At least acknowledge that flissdavies has read and taken seriously the comments from James and others before attacking the linguistic skills demonstrated in her[?]response.
Thursday 25 October 2007 1.34pm
janefs wrote:
linguistic skills demonstrated in her[?]response

I am afraid that I did not notice any, Janefs. I am sorry if I didn't make that clear in my previous response. Perhaps you would be so kind as to point them out.

Anyway, in an attempt to be constructive and to offer assistance to OP, here is a selection of capital letters for OP to use in her[?] next post. ABCDEÉFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ. If you need any more, OP, just shout.
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