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-   -   Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities (https://www.excelbanter.com/excel-discussion-misc-queries/263097-re-microsoft-responds-evolution-online-communities.html)

Joe User[_2_] May 5th 10 04:03 AM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that they
have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable and least
feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums will
be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing "forums".
Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem reports. In fact,
they do not even provide an effective way to report problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless (just
a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that postings
will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively closing
down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in the
rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to worldwide
market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors to
retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community environment
with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers and search
engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and off-topic
management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to the
community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out tools and
resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime, please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.



T. Valko May 5th 10 05:06 AM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
I didn't go to this link to read about the replacement forum:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx

So I have no idea if that link mentions the location of the new forums.

The new Excel forums are located at:

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

I've started posting there. The UI is completely different but it's still a
web based forum!

--
Biff
Microsoft Excel MVP


"Joe User" <joeu2004 wrote in message
...
wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that
they have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable
and least feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums
will be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing
"forums". Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem
reports. In fact, they do not even provide an effective way to report
problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless
(just a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that
postings will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively closing
down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in the
rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to
worldwide market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors
to retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community environment
with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers and search
engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and off-topic
management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to the
community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out tools
and resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime, please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.





Steve Dunn May 5th 10 01:23 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
Microsoft point the general forums url at:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx

The new Excel forums are at various addresses, for example the
worksheet.functions forum is now available at:

http://www.microsoft.com/office/comm...&lang=en&cr=US

Which seem very different to the forums at:

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

So, confusion already then...


Neither are very nice in terms of keeping an eye on progressing threads,
filtering/sorting threads, etc., and if you want to store a message for
offline reading - well, good luck attempting that.

Personally, I think I'll stick to the newsgroup method until it's no longer
running.




"T. Valko" wrote in message
...
I didn't go to this link to read about the replacement forum:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx

So I have no idea if that link mentions the location of the new forums.

The new Excel forums are located at:

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

I've started posting there. The UI is completely different but it's still
a web based forum!

--
Biff
Microsoft Excel MVP


"Joe User" <joeu2004 wrote in message
...
wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that
they have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable
and least feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums
will be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing
"forums". Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem
reports. In fact, they do not even provide an effective way to report
problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless
(just a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that
postings will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively
closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in
the rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to
worldwide market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors
to retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community
environment with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers
and search engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and
off-topic management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to
the community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out
tools and resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime, please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.






Fred Smith[_4_] May 5th 10 02:45 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
I'm with you, Steve. Newsgroups are so much easier than web-based forums.
I'll stick with them until forced to change. This may be a blessing in
disguise. I remember when Quicken switch to a web-based interface that was
at least as bad as Excel's. It became so frustrating I gave up, and put my
time to "better" use. Maybe the same thing will happen to Excel.

Regards,
Fred

"Steve Dunn" wrote in message
...
Microsoft point the general forums url at:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx

The new Excel forums are at various addresses, for example the
worksheet.functions forum is now available at:

http://www.microsoft.com/office/comm...&lang=en&cr=US

Which seem very different to the forums at:

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

So, confusion already then...


Neither are very nice in terms of keeping an eye on progressing threads,
filtering/sorting threads, etc., and if you want to store a message for
offline reading - well, good luck attempting that.

Personally, I think I'll stick to the newsgroup method until it's no
longer running.




"T. Valko" wrote in message
...
I didn't go to this link to read about the replacement forum:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx

So I have no idea if that link mentions the location of the new forums.

The new Excel forums are located at:

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

I've started posting there. The UI is completely different but it's still
a web based forum!

--
Biff
Microsoft Excel MVP


"Joe User" <joeu2004 wrote in message
...
wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.

Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that
they have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable
and least feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx.
In the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums
will be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing
"forums". Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem
reports. In fact, they do not even provide an effective way to report
problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless
(just a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that
postings will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively
closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in
the rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to
worldwide market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors
to retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community
environment with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers
and search engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and
off-topic management platform that will improve customer satisfaction
by facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to
the community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out
tools and resources to minimize disruption to the community
discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime,
please refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.







Jim Thomlinson May 5th 10 03:15 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
I think I will try the new forum before I express an opinion on whether it is
better or worse. Just my 2 cents.
--
HTH...

Jim Thomlinson


"Joe User" wrote:

wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that they
have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable and least
feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums will
be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing "forums".
Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem reports. In fact,
they do not even provide an effective way to report problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless (just
a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that postings
will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively closing
down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in the
rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to worldwide
market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors to
retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community environment
with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers and search
engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and off-topic
management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to the
community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out tools and
resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime, please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.


.


Jim Thomlinson May 5th 10 05:08 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
To expand on what I said...

I like the way the news group works. It is simple and intuitive. The only
issues I have so far is that I don't want to lose the body of work that
exists in these forums. I often find myself searching for posts that I read
long ago. Secondly I am not sure that I like the new categories for XL.
Noteably the programming forum is gone. That being said the current
categories are not perfect either.
--
HTH...

Jim Thomlinson


"Jim Thomlinson" wrote:

I think I will try the new forum before I express an opinion on whether it is
better or worse. Just my 2 cents.
--
HTH...

Jim Thomlinson


"Joe User" wrote:

wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that they
have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable and least
feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums will
be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing "forums".
Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem reports. In fact,
they do not even provide an effective way to report problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless (just
a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that postings
will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively closing
down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in the
rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to worldwide
market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors to
retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community environment
with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers and search
engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and off-topic
management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to the
community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out tools and
resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime, please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.


.


Joe User[_2_] May 5th 10 07:28 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
"T. Valko" wrote:
I didn't go to this link to read about the replacement forum:
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx


Maybe you should be before you cast aspersions on someone else.


So I have no idea if that link mentions the location of the new forums.


Not sure if you are calling me a liar, or you think I am incapable of
copy-and-pasting, or you simply cannot read. I quoted what that link
mentions. I wrote:

In the Q&A the
"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"



The new Excel forums are located at:
http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx


Yes, that is another way to get the same new Excel forums, apparently.

But the two top-level web sites are very different, at least in appearance.
I cannot explain to you why Microsoft has two different ways to go to the
same place. But that does not make you right and me wrong.

It is not the first time that Microsoft has maintained two different ways to
access the same forums. Jerry Lewis made me aware of two ways to access
(some of) the "Discussion Groups":
www.microsoft.com/communities/newsgroups/en-us, which I have always used,
and http://www.microsoft.com/office/comm...s/default.mspx, which Jerry was
using recently. But in fact, the web site I used has a more complete list
of Excel "Discussion Groups" than the web site that Jerry used.

Caveat emptor.


The UI is completely different but it's still
a web based forum!


There is nothing inherently wrong with a web interface. Google Groups is a
web interface, and I find it reasonably adequate.

I was commenting on Microsoft's historical failure to maintain a reliable
interface, web or otherwise. (Not to say that GG is perfect.) Also,
Microsoft's historical poor support of the interfaces that they provide.
Even with the new Excel forums, I do not see any way to report problems to
Microsoft. (But that might be my oversight. I just looked for the obvious
"contact us" link on one web page.)

I also raised concerns (along with compliments) about how that moderator
process might work. This is based on two decades of experience with
moderated NGs. Perhaps MVP Ron Coderre can offer some insight. Apparently
he is the moderator (or one of them) of some of the new Excel forums.

Lastly, my chief concern is that there will no longer be an alternative
if/when posting problems arise with the new Excel forum. And I will no
longer be able to troubleshoot and explain those problems, like deleted
postings. You have personally benefitted from that just recently.

Oh well, it's a done deal. I am not trying to complain. I am merely trying
to set expectations.


----- original message -----

"T. Valko" wrote in message
...
I didn't go to this link to read about the replacement forum:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx

So I have no idea if that link mentions the location of the new forums.

The new Excel forums are located at:

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx

I've started posting there. The UI is completely different but it's still
a web based forum!

--
Biff
Microsoft Excel MVP


"Joe User" <joeu2004 wrote in message
...
wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that
they have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable
and least feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums
will be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing
"forums". Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem
reports. In fact, they do not even provide an effective way to report
problems with "forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless
(just a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that
postings will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively
closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in
the rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to
worldwide market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors
to retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community
environment with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers
and search engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and
off-topic management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to
the community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out
tools and resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime, please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.






Jef Gorbach[_2_] May 5th 10 07:36 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
So will google groups still access this forum once it relocates??

Joe User[_2_] May 5th 10 07:52 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
"Jim Thomlinson" wrote:
I think I will try the new forum before I express an opinion on whether it
is
better or worse.


You are right: I had not looked. Not that I have, I can offer the opinion
that I think the interface is even worse that the "Discussion Groups"
interface, if you can imagine that. (But of course, that is only one
opinion. To each his own.)

But I hasten to note that my previous comments were not intended to be about
the interface per se. I was not expressing any opinion then about whether
it is better or worse. Frankly, I don't care one way or the other.

I was expressing concern that Microsoft was limiting "forum" access to
Microsoft's method. My concern is based on Microsoft's historical failure
to maintain a reliable interface (web or otherwise, makes no difference to
me), and its historical failure to provide reason support of their
interface, e.g. a rudimentary "contact us" link to report problems. (No
matter: Microsoft does not address reported problems anyway. ;-)

I also expressed concern (along with compliments) about the moderator
process. That is based on two decades of experience with the NG moderator
process. The good: hopefully less spam, if not none at all. The bad:
potential delays, and possible censorship. MVP Ron Coderre can offer his
insight. Apparently he is (one of) the moderator for (some of) the new
Excel forums. (Note to Ron: I hope you have alternate moderators. That is
essential to process.)

Lastly, I was expressing concern about having only one method for posting
inquiries/responses -- a single point of failure. We have benefitted from
having multiple methods; when your favorite method encountered problems,
there was another method to post a "what's happening?" question, at the very
least.

Moreover, the openness of the NG server and the alternative archive sites
permitted me to troubleshoot and explain some posting problems. I have
dispelled some misunderstandings; and I have exposed some bad practices on
the MSnews server in particular. The opaqueness and uniqueness of the new
forum interface makes all that impossible. So we are entirely dependent on
Microsoft for support; and that comes full circle to my primary concern that
Microsoft has proven unable or incapable of supporting such forums.

Oh well, such as life....


----- original message -----

"Jim Thomlinson" wrote in message
...
I think I will try the new forum before I express an opinion on whether it
is
better or worse. Just my 2 cents.
--
HTH...

Jim Thomlinson


"Joe User" wrote:

wrote:
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin
progressively closing down the Microsoft public newsgroups
to enrich conversations in the rapidly-growing forum
platform.


Translation: Microsoft will force people to use the web interface that
they
have maintained so poorly for years and that is the least reliable and
least
feature-rich interface for these "forums" that I am aware of.

Confirmation of that fact comes from the official Microsoft Newsgroup
website http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx. In
the Q&A the

"Q: Where can I access these forums from?
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/forums/default.mspx"

The only potentially good thing to come out of this....

"Q: What should newsgroup users prepare for that will be different?
[....]
Additionally, Microsoft newsgroups are not moderated, while the forums
will
be."

But the operative word is "potentially".

First, Microsoft has demonstrated complete ineptitude in managing
"forums".
Their tools do not work. MS does not respond to problem reports. In
fact,
they do not even provide an effective way to report problems with
"forums".

Second, moderating a group is either highly labor-intensive or useless
(just
a pass-thru).

But if the moderation is real (and effective), that will mean that
postings
will incur delays.

Moreover, I have never heard of moderation done on a scale this large.
Consider the traffic in the m.p.excel newsgroups alone. Well, perhaps
Microsoft will depend on MVPs to be moderators.

Oh well....


----- original message -----

wrote in message
...
Date 5/4/2010
Starting in early summer 2010, Microsoft will begin progressively
closing
down the Microsoft public newsgroups to enrich conversations in the
rapidly-growing forum platform. This decision is in response to
worldwide
market trends and evolving customer needs.

Microsoft continues to invest in forums to reduce customer effort,
consolidate community venues and make it easier for active contributors
to
retain their influence. Forums provide a healthy community environment
with less spam and make answers easier to find by customers and search
engines. Additionally, forums offer a better user and off-topic
management platform that will improve customer satisfaction by
facilitating discussions in a clean space.

We understand that some newsgroups are still active, and important to
the
community. In the coming days and weeks, we will be rolling out tools
and
resources to minimize disruption to the community discussions.

We are working diligently on providing additional resources and
information in local languages later this week. In the meantime,
please
refer to the official Microsoft Newsgroup website
http://www.microsoft.com/communities...s/default.mspx concerning
this issue. The Microsoft Newsgroup website will be made available in
additional languages in the next few days.


.



Joe User[_2_] May 5th 10 08:10 PM

Microsoft Responds to the Evolution of Online Communities
 
"Jef Gorbach" wrote:
So will google groups still access this forum once
it relocates??


That is not really possible, well at least not without significant
investment by Google.

Google relies on a particular network protocol (NNTP) to access the
Microsoft forums archived on the MSnews server. Actually, Google relies on
Giganews, which in turn relies on the MSnews server.

Hypothetically, Microsoft might still mirror new forum activity on their
MSnews server. That is how the current "Discussion Groups" forum works.

But my understanding of their explanation is that they will not. They
write:

"Microsoft has a long history of establishing newsgroups that channel users
and issues into the newsgroup (NNTP) space where information is shared and
problems can be addressed by the community. [....] Using forums as the
online support strategy will reduce the number of redundant resources and
centralize content, making community contributions more broadly available
and impactful. Beginning in June 2010, Microsoft will begin closing
newsgroups and migrating users to Microsoft forums".

It seems clear that they are contrasting "newsgroup" access with "forum"
access, and they will be limiting access to the "forum" only through their
interface.

Theoretically, Google could design a program that "reads" the Microsoft web
interface, sorts things out, and archives inquires and responses in the form
that Google is accustomed to. After all, parsing HTML is Google's core
business.

However, I doubt that would happen. It would require that Google treat the
Microsoft "newsgroups" differently from the many thousands of other
newsgroups that Google archives.

Moreover, Google Groups is not the only other way to access Microsoft
newsgroups today. Even if GG implements a solution, users of the other
alternatives will be affected adversely.

To put all this in a positive light, I suspect that Microsoft's purpose is
to shield its forums from spam. That would be a good thing, if Microsoft
weren't so inept at supporting reliable forums.

Of course, maybe Microsoft will change. ;-)



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