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Threaded or flat thread format?

Adding forum, don't know which format to choose

     
7:21 am on Jul 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member lammert is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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Many forums in the world use a threaded message structure. In this structure users can decide to which message in a thread they want to reply. You can walk down a specific message tree within a thread. Some other forums, like WW for example, use a flat structure where it is only possible to add a message to the end of the thread.

Personally I like the flat format because it is cleaner and easier to read, but because there are also forums using some threaded structure that I am not sure if those users would feel less comfortable in a flat environment.

What is your opinion about the best structure?

8:32 am on July 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Flat all the way! In addition to the advantages you cite, it makes people do a little extra work to fit their contributions into the flow. And that's a Good Thing. Also, disable automatic quoting. Another thing that contributes to the ease of use of WW.
7:06 pm on July 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I prefer threaded, myself. It's a subjective thing.
2:20 am on July 31, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I hate flat because it's so much harder to find things. I like my boards tidy.
11:04 pm on July 31, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I'd say it depends on the board philosophy. If you are trying to keep posts on-topic, a flat structure provides less temptation to branch into other areas.