Thank you to the many readers of The Drama Teacher who voted in recent weeks on whether this website should maintain a forum? The final count was a total of 258 votes with 68.6% of votes wishing to keep the forum alive and 31.4% of votes happy to dispense with the forum altogether.
While the end result was clearly in favour of keeping the forum, several other factors have determined the need for me to shut it down. Firstly, the forum software used for several months has been buggy (many users said their forum posts failed to appear on the board and I discovered this problem also – possibly a bug linked to browser caching).
Secondly, the other forums I tested behind the scenes to potentially replace this forum all had their own unique set of different bugs, too. Although I have used vBulletin and PHPBB forums before, I opted not to use a third party forum on this occasion.
Thirdly, the only difference between a forum and a blog is the ability for the user (you) to start their own topics, instead of commenting on topics created by the blogger (me) in posts. There didn’t appear to be a huge demand for users wanting to do this, evidenced mostly by comments on posts that were always relevant to the content of the individual post.
In the end, the forum was understandably not very popular even though it had a considerable number of registered users.
So, bye, bye forum. The Drama Teacher will continue to be strong for its community of readers without it.