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Jill Carpenter

The Playground

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I'd like to toss a thought into the mix.


It's something that I came across years ago on a different forum.


This forum had a "secret" area that only became revealed when a member reached x number of posts. It is called "the playground" and essentially it was like the bar here, but a bit more private where discussions could be had that were not obvious to the rest of the internet.


I post a lot (if you haven't noticed, lol) and I'd reached access to the playground in something like 4-5 days as I was involved in a hot topic on the main forum. People were cracking up at how quickly I saw that forum. It was like a surprise treat when it popped up. Like finding a hidden door in a house that went to a secret room.


Anyway, perhaps there are topics here that are in the bar currently that might be better discussed in something like the playground.


I just checked, and its on a vbulletin site.


Something that came to mind that I'd post in a playground this morning was my going through step by step as I start building up this silo site this week. Just the putting together of the template, and have open discussion of what plugins I'm using/trying while doing it. I could get feedback and ideas from people - as well as possibly save someone else some time who might consider doing what I'm doing the way I'm planning to do it.


Perhaps a playground area could be a common area - where your paid members here automatically have access and for free members it is earned through either posting or time or simply at your discretion.


It might be a good way to keep your executive members in a happy place. They've paid for what ever extra goodies/help they've got - and it should stay that way. It remains a type of high end executive members area.

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I'm open to discussing it. 


I think it needs to be fleshed out a little more. 


What is really the purpose of it? Why would someone want to post in there versus one of the regular open areas? Should it be limited in topic or have two or more sub-topic forums within the "playground"? 


I also want to be careful that we don't attract those fools who just post to get to some arbitrary number of posts to get access to something. For that reason, I would probably consider setting the post count requirement somewhat high, like 200-300 posts. I have seen forums where you have to have 50 posts to have a signature. They get people just posting the crappy "thanks for this" type posts all over the place.

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Also, should it be something hidden from view completely until access is granted or something that people can see the post topics but cannot read any of the content like the private areas are setup now? Sort of to peak their curiosity.

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Oh, I agree - needs to be fleshed out.


The playground gave an area for people to get even more familiar with others. Those who were very active on the main forums.


More private discussions could be had without having to log into somewhere else to have them. Stuff you didn't want swinging so openly all over the web - but you did want to have a common area for people you had a better idea about to discuss what ever it was you wanted to discuss or share.


How you would do it would be totally up to you.


At the place I was in I believe I had a pop up when I logged in one day that said "you are now able to access the playground" and honestly didn't know it existed before that.


But yes - you could show a little ankle and it may encourage some additional posting if people really want to get in there to look. Their only other option is to go full in on membership to get in there quicker. ;)


Afterall, it's all about having some regular posting on a forum.


If you are unsure how to divide it up, you could simply give people in that area a thread to "suggest" if they'd like it subbed out a bit more and what their requested areas would be.


Might be kind of fun naming those sub forums if you wanted to get creative with it. For example, if you called it playground you could sub that out into "sand box, teeter totter, swingset, slide" - which could be different marketing/seo forums, lol. Just spewing thoughts here.

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