I've suggested in a couple of OAC places that the heart of this site ought to be its Discussion Forum. That is where we can collectively exploit the threaded sociality that characterises this kind of website - a sociality that is primarily spun through threads not groups.

The individual and collective benefits of starting a thread in the Discussion Forum as opposed to a group are by now clear. As an individual thread starter, because of the visibility and sheer traffic passing through this central OAC location you create the necessary lift-off to get your discussion under way and give the thread a decent lifespan and quality of life (as well as higher reproductive chances, i.e. of producing sub-threads).

Collectively we all benefit from having much easier access as lurkers or posters to topics that would otherwise have remained hidden in the dark recesses of small groups to which we have not signed up. As Hülya Demirdirek said somewhere, do we really want to sign up to a group every time we wish to join in a discussion?

Thinking of starting a new group thread? Start it in the main Discussion Forum and tell other members about it. Location is everything.

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Comment by Paul Wren on July 11, 2009 at 5:19pm
Quite so. Even if one feels compelled to also create the new group, getting the discussions going in the main forum first will pull in the people who may then also be interested in joining a group.

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