Advice on BuddyPress + bbPress
Latest versions of WP, BP, and bbP
I’m trying to devise a simple, socially-oriented discussion space that has some invitation-only groups, and specific private fora for specific topics, but that is easy to enter and manage.
My initial thought was to have two groups:
Fans – open group
Various fora – all open
Contributors – invitation-only group
Specific fora and sub-fora – all private. For example:
Project forum 1 – open only to some members of the Contributors group
Project sub-forum A – open only to some members of the Forum 1 group
I’m finding that the groups and fora are hard to administer. I’d like to be able to simply check some boxes on the back end to define which site members belong to which groups and fora. Instead, they have to join, then I have to invite them (through the front end) to each group and to each forum and sub-forum. It’s slow and tedious.
I had thought that using both BuddyPress and bbPress would give me what I want, and it does function, but it’s unattractive and awkward to manage. Some specific issues:
- Group ‘forum’ – each group has its own discussion space aside from the fora. I’d like to force people to use the fora instead.
- Signup – as noted, it’s very awkward to manage memberships in groups and fora; too much so for anyone to realistically sign up for the site, join a group, join a forum, join a sub-forum. I know who should be where; I’d like to manage all or most of this on the back end.
- Forum font size – is very small. While this seems a small detail, I’ve tried altering every font setting in my theme, and none seem to affect this.
- Am I using the right tools? Would just bbPress or just BuddyPress be better?
- Are there specific plugins I should be using? I’ve seen some that look useful, but many are out of date. Some aren’t described with much specificity. I’m not sure which would do what I want.
Advice much appreciated.
(Also, any free themes that would work well, so that fora aren’t pushed way down the page.)
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