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Mark Newton
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Posts: 129
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Hi,

This is almost certainly a stupid question, but one I'm going to ask anyway.

I was thinking about forums in general, and wondering why I haven't seen any where you can (legitimately) post a question/comment in more than one area of a forum. Obviously you can just re-post questions, but that just annoys everyone and creates work for moderators.

That got me thinking more specifically about JavaRanch, and when I have a question, for example about both performance and Swing, or a question that is to do with certification, but might be anwered by, or of interest to, someone reading one of the Java In General areas.

I can't see that it would be a massive technical challenge to allow me to select more than one area in which to post my question. The different section headings would then be more like searches ('show me all the topics marked as "performance"'), and if I've already read the question in a different section, it would just show up as having been read, and I'd ignore it (unlike when someone re-posts the same question).

That way, when I'm searching for an answer, I don't have to try and guess where someone might have posted a similar question, and I'm less likely to miss a solution that someone's offered, because I'm looking in the wrong place. If I'm posting a new question, I can be sure that it's likely to be seen by people who might have answers, or others with the same question.

Even further, you could make the areas that are selected modifiable by anyone, so if I answer a question with a further question, that perhaps someone with different expertise could answer, I can easily add the whole post to that area as well.

Anyway, it was just a thought, and I'm sure not a change you'll be making immediately, but it occurred to me, and I was bored at work, so thought I'd post it
 
Ernest Friedman-Hill
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Kind of how labels work in Gmail: instead of having different forums (mailboxes) you just have one big forum (mailbox) and a set of labels that act as "views". It's not a bad idea, although it is subject to abuse more easily than the present system: if someone spams JavaRanch with a "Hey doodz, I rul3z" message, they have to do one forum at a time; by the time they've done half a dozen, a moderator will have closed their account. Most people will never see the spam. But if you could just select all available tags and post just one message, then you could annoy everyone on the Ranch at once, although it would be easier for a moderator to clean it up.
 
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