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kenmorefield

A Forum for Reviews?

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Dear A&Fers,

I have chatted with some publicists since acquiring the site, and one piece of feedback I keep getting is the recommendation for a separate forum for "Reviews" (film, television, music). This is mostly because publicists or studios offering screeners (or accreditation to festivals), are conditioned to want reviews and not just discussion posts. Many (most?) people who frequent here have their own outlets and post links to their reviews in the discussion forums. 

A "review" forum would be restricted in the sense that it would only contain original reviews (not links to external reviews) and members who wanted to post reviews there would have to be approved by web moderators. (This is to keep people from posting in wrong place new people to sign up just to publish what are essentially ads.) 

Reviews would not be paid at least for the time being, though if the site starts generating revenue I am open to that. It would mostly be looked at as an alternative to blogging or a place where people who might otherwise blog could get broader exposure. 

This seems like a good idea to me, but I do wonder if it could exacerbate historical tensions about the board being unwelcoming or their being tiers between insiders/core and others. Any input on this idea is welcome.

Ken

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Does the forum platform being used here allow for template-managed, stand-alone pages? Forum threads and reviews are categorically different to me, so I can't imagine what a review forum would look like or how it might generate enough traffic to get the attention of publicists. Which isn't to say it couldn't work.

Some of my earliest online film discussions took place on the Home Theater Forum. It's still primarily a forum -- every page links to the discussion areas from the main nav -- but the front page looks like a typical magazine-style site with thumbnail teases of their latest reviews and articles. Since many of the most active A&F contributors these days write reviews pretty regularly, maybe there'd be an opportunity to build a full-fledged A&F site? Just a thought.

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23 hours ago, Darren H said:

Does the forum platform being used here allow for template-managed, stand-alone pages? Forum threads and reviews are categorically different to me, so I can't imagine what a review forum would look like or how it might generate enough traffic to get the attention of publicists. Which isn't to say it couldn't work.

 

The short answer to that question is ... I don't know. I suspect it is theoretically possible for the Invision (forum) sotfware to be integrated as part of a larger site, but doing so would be beyond my technical do-it-yourself know how and probably prohibitively expensive. 

In terms of amount of traffic...everything is pretty relative. An A&F subforum for reviews is not going to compete with IndieWire or variety, but it would probably generate as much traffic as many personal blogs. I don't think Disney is going to invite any A&F writers to the red carpet premiere of Avengers part whatever,  but there are a lot of publicists in the long tail whose job is to beat the bushes....

 

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