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I know that there are plans to remove Linear + and Outline (Threaded) mode in IPB 3.2. I can understand this because I don't think anyone uses Linear +, and Outline mode only really works if people hit the "Reply" button next to a post and not the "Add Reply" button. With the use of the "Add Reply" button it defeats the purpose of a Threaded mode because every post ends up under the main one.

While I understand this and do think it's warranted, I think there is a lot of value in a Threaded style board. This would be an efficient way to accomplish threading (each topic has it's own tree). You could have the main posts table keep the parent_id relationship it has, but have a second table with left and right values for each topic. I'm not really suggesting having a switchable mode per user, but rather a global board setting for those that prefer a threaded style board. I know that some people may not like or appreciate the threaded style, but having first used a threaded style board it can be quite efficient. How so? With a threaded topic people typically put what they want to say in the title. If it's more than a short sentence they put text in the body. If all they want to say is in the title they put "-nt-" (that's how we did it in the old days). You can read an entire conversation that way on a single screen. With a linear board you have to read page after page...

(If you do consider this, "Threaded mode" would hide the "Multi-Quote" and "Add Reply" button. The purpose of a "threaded board" is to converse in short sentences... Kind of like a tweet!)

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The Linear+ and Outline modes have already been removed from the codebase. We were aware of ways we could have made Linear+/Threaded views work, but frankly - the usage levels just don't justify the development time.

On top of that, I know what type of forum you're meaning, and IP.Board is not that type of forum. Threaded boards like that are a thing of the past, and mailing lists are really the only thing that continues to hang onto the model, but IP.Board is not a mailing list software.

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  • 5 years later...
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54 minutes ago, Michael Krewson said:

Now that FB and other social media have embraced threaded discussions and this type of forum is considered "slow and clunky" (as one of my users called it) are there now any plans to update IPS 4.1.x with a threaded discussion option?

My forum at www.TheWorldNewsMedia.org could REALLY use it ....


Thank you for the feedback and inquiry, but you're unlikely to see this. A couple of things. Firstly, what Facebook does is more akin to a nested reply than what many would remember as threaded discussion. Secondly, in the social media context, nested replies (which are only allowed one level deep) were primarily introduced so the discussion starter could respond directly to a reply. If you've seen this in use on a large group or page, such nested discussion is very hard to follow. Lastly, social media is fantastic for in-the-now, focused discussion. Communities are better for discussion and engagement that last days, weeks, months, even years... not just hours. 

Older versions of our software had different formatting options, including threaded. It had very limited use and the maintaining the feature was deemed not worthwhile. I've learned never to say never, but I can confidently say we have no foreseeable plans to do threaded discussions and beyond the quote feature, nested replies are awkward in a community setting. 

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