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Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 2:42 pm
by cubic
http://www.google.com.au/search?q=forum ... =firefox-a
Results 1 - 10 of about 683,000 for forum.exetel.com.au. (0.48 seconds)
Some of those links are from other Exetel sites of course, but based on a brief look, most aren't. I would imagine few if any are from link farms either - they'd have nothing to gain from linking here - so while many of the incoming links may well be from crappy sites (by some definition) I doubt they're doing you any harm SEO-wise.

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:06 pm
by Dazzled
Corey, in the worlds of science and programming if it's worth anything, it is published. This particularly applies to internet related information, as cubic suggests. As to copying - it is, as always, a form of flattery - being annoyed at the principle is the wrong reaction. The lack of attribution is only about etiquette.

From another point of view, how many times have you needed information and found it on an open forum? You can find the answer to nearly everything ever thought about computing if you lurk around enough Open Source forums. On this forum other Australian ISP sites have been pointed to often enough as a source of config information.

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:25 pm
by Mixer
I also agree with cubic, Munka and Dazzled.
When a good friend first suggested Exetel he told me to check out the forum.
"They are a no nonsense ISP who give great service at a fair price, but they expect you to look after your end of the deal , however they do provide fantastic help in their forum."
The forum was the decider for me. It is a great resource that I enjoy using but I would prefer all knowledge to be 'open'.
Corey has a valid point about linked accounts aiding tech support.
Perhaps link login to the user account and make it Exetel members only with posting rights?
However many solutions provided in this forum link and refer to other parts of the web so it only seems fair to continue to allow that as a two way deal.

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:34 pm
by CoreyPlover
I've dedicated close to 6,000 posts on these forums with the specific aim to help Exetel users. I don't have issues with other people benefiting (the more the merrier), but it doesn't change the fact that I undertook such posts as I wanted to give back to the Exetel community specifically, so that they can pay it forward to other users.

On the one hand: this forum has commercial value ("come to Exetel. We have a huge forum that can help with all your enquiries"). There are also significant benefits in support services that come from linking Exetel logins to the forum as I mentioned before. By contrast, I don't think the loss of the "openness" of the forums will significantly detract users from benefiting from its use. Especially if the recommendations are word of mouth as current Exetel users can simply login and show the forums to their friends.

On the other hand: Exetel give to the greater community in the form of environmental donations. This forum can simply be viewed as a donation to the greater community in the form of knowledge.

End result. I can't see any issue with either direction though I can picture a few nifty innovations that could materialise should these forums become private. I can still serve my goal of helping Exetel users either way so I'm not fussed at all

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:41 pm
by CoreyPlover
Mixer wrote:Perhaps link login to the user account and make it Exetel members only with posting rights?
This is quite a promising idea. I'm pretty sure that it is possible too, though Exetel might have had the simpler idea of placing the forum behind a single login page

However, if they were actually going to *integrate* the forums (and create a forum account automatically at sign-up) then yours could be a very worthwhile consideration

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:50 pm
by Munka
Corey you have caught my interest with this-
CoreyPlover wrote: though I can picture a few nifty innovations that could materialise should these forums become private.
Such as?

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 10:08 pm
by CoreyPlover
Munka wrote:Corey you have caught my interest with this-
CoreyPlover wrote: though I can picture a few nifty innovations that could materialise should these forums become private.
Such as?
From my previous post, things like:
  • Pre-populate every user with a correct location, ideally down to the actual exchange they are connected to, making exchange related issues much clearer to identify
  • With users and posts linked back to Exetel accounts, posts such as "my service isn't working" become quicker to log as a PM doesn't have to be obtained to discover people's fault tickets or service number
  • Pre-populate the forum email accounts with the exemail (or their redirected / preferred email contact) in order to merge forum PM's with email
  • Gives support staff a wider history of a support ticket / issue as they can view all posts by that user / that account.
  • A part of me wonders whether a special forum could be integrated with the Member Facilities in order to more accurately reflect service status and relevant posts in the Member's dashboard

Re: Exetel User Help Forum - Only For Exetel Users

Posted: Fri Apr 30, 2010 5:23 pm
by Tarou
without public access to see that the forums are used and how people can help my mates would not have signed up. Maybe just allow access for people who are here and willing to help. Not just for everyone.