How to create a forum that isn't associated with a group?
This is probably ridiculously obvious but for some reason I can’t figure it out. Where’s the button to create a forum without associating it with a group? I have bbpress set up but is it possible to create multiple forums within Buddypress that aren’t associated with groups or is the bbpress installation the only one?
How do I enable the old functionality where I could have forums with no groups associated ? Has this been disabled ?
No, but you will need to set up bbPress separately.
Ah, so does that mean that if I wanted multiple forums I’d also need multiple bbPress installations?
Mmmh, no, I think that what Andy means is that BP 1.1 includes a “one click” forum integration BUT with groups attached.
If you want to have forums independent from groups, U need to install and integrate bbP the “old” way.
Oh I see, is this the old way? http://umwblogs.org/wiki/index.php/Integrating_WPMu%2C_BuddyPress%2C_and_bbPress I’m not sure because I just installed them both today and set up integration during the bbPress install. So right now I’ve just been controlling the integration through bbPress -> Settings -> WordPress Integration.
Yeah, I used this tutorial instead: http://theeasybutton.com/blog/2009/07/17/integrating-buddypress-wordpress-mu-and-bbpress/
Bear in mind that I am not very skilled at BP/WPMU/bbP, so my answer to your previous question could be wrong !
enforcing to create groups to create a forum doesn’t seem to be right. We should have flexibility to create forums, groups, separately or together. That makes it ideal for different needs.
Yeah I agree, the whole groups and forums things is a little counterintuitive considering the way most internet users have come to expect forums to behave.
I am having the same problem with groups and forums and the one click install. I might even switch to another forum script if I have time to build a bridge.
This all depends on what you want your website to be about.
I’m guessing that you can modify the groups heavily so that they’re believed to be forum categories instead. Strip everything but the forums from the groups (members, admin, all) and change the way they look. The forums should be more prominent and have larger fonts, etc.
The downside is that all the groups-features will be unusable. At this time I’ll probably try to make this change and see what happens. It will be a modified groups child theme oriented at forums.
I’m all for integrated solutions and don’t want to have a bridge. They tend to collapse from time to time (at least back in the phpBB2 days).
Another idea is to have all non-group-specific forums belong to a sort of invisible, public group that everyone on the site is a member of. That way, anyone could post to the forum, and its topics would show up in the forum directory as you’d expect.
The trick would be to get that group not to appear on group directories, both public and individual, since the group would be nothing more than a shell for public forums and thus wouldn’t have any other content worth listing on people’s group and activity pages. It’d be easy enough to add a piece of metadata to each group that determined whether it should be listed in directories (independently of the public/private/hidden distinction). The problem is that groups are listed in lots of different places in BP, and you’d have to hijack each one of them in order to filter for this metadata. Such a plugin would be a pain to build and to maintain, I expect, as group lists are posted in more and different places throughout BP.
The key to streamlining the forums = groups = forums path is to remove the groups metaphor, at least for users. There are two BP metaphors that get the most user attention: profiles and forums. From profiles, people can interact with other users: friending and joining groups. From forums, people can interact with other users: reading and writing topical posts. Having groups as a separate metaphor, which is sort of like forums and sort of like profiles creates confusion.
A quick solution would be creating a separate bbpress installation, integrating it with the bp forums and deactivating the bp groups.
@wordpressfan I think you might be right for some kinds of communities, but as the groups functionality of BP becomes richer (as it does with, for example, Andy’s new External Group Blogs plugin), the groups/forums distinction won’t seem so arbitrary. Forums then become just one of the ways that group members (ie people who share a common interest or purpose) can collaborate and communicate. But you’re right that right now there is little difference between a group and a forum, at least functionally speaking.
Think of something like Usenet, which was basically just a group of people talking back and forth inside their own little forum. Since BuddyPress is a community centric, user centric plugin for WordPress, the focus is on the interaction between people inside their respective groups. Forums are currently a feature of groups, but forums could be a feature of other things later too if plugins choose to support them, since bbPress is included and a great example of an API exists within BuddyPress.
Events could have their own discussion forums, blogs, users, activity feed items could be topics, etc…
Another way of looking at this is community size. A lot of us won’t have mega huge communities like Facebook. Not even 50.000 members. So then it comes down to fragmentation of user activity. Do we need a lot of venues and ways for users to interact?
I’m quite content with P2 for status updates, a forum and wire on personal pages. This is already a lot and groups on top of that will only confuse and fragment discussions.
Groups will probably be great with tons of functionality but where’s KISS?
Anyways, I’ll have a go at it. Probably hackish but perhaps good enough for me.
JJJ – I really like your modular way of thinking about how the forums could work with other parts of BP. It’s just hard to envision how, say, forums could be attached to an event, given the current dependence of forums on groups. Ideally (at least from this viewpoint) forums would be more of an independent, top-level component of BP, in the same way that a wire is (and in the same way that a wire can be placed on profiles, group pages, and so on).
I’ve been playing around with integrating BP into P2 and it works pretty okay. There’s lot of CSS that has to be replaced.
What I found was that userbar/optionsbar wasn’t called in the header (I didn’t do that step) and suddenly KISS is true. I’ll only call for certain pages in the header with a menu that gives the users what they need.
P2 / Forums / Profile / Settings / Log out
That’s it. No userbar/optionsbar. These will be included in the top pages above. Groups are used as categories and will be displayed on Forums / index.php above the latest post. Instead of popular forums I’ll include all the forums that exist.
There’s a lot of work to be done but it’s also simpler than I thought it would be. Thanks for all the work Andy & crew!
I was wondering if anyone of you tried to install bbpress the “old way” and STILL have groups, in order to have a plain old bbpress forum (not attached to any group) AND groups.
I just installed the brand new BP 1.2 (which is really a great job) and installed bbpress automatically, but, as a couple of you said, it’s confusing to me, and it will be to the users too.
I’m embarrassed that my question is almost infantile…but how do you create a FORUM within a GROUP??? In the Admin section of a given Group I have the following menu choices, none of which seem appropriate:
Forgive me if I am missing something, but I’d appreciate any help with this matter.
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