Best Review - Top 10 steps to a happy forum (forum tips)


ere are the top ten tips to a happy forum, where quality of content, absence of spam and good community feeling come together to form a positive experience for everyone involved... Is it a dream only? No it is possible as Phil Tanny ( ) has proven to us many times.. Let's see how..

Forum Tips
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Top 1

Have a vision

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Carefully define a vision for your forum, and clearly articulate that vision to your visitors. What kind of posts do you wish to see on your forum?

Top 2

Review content BEFORE it's posted

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Review content PRIOR to publication, instead of AFTER publication. Don't publish anything that doesn't serve your vision. Thus, no objectionable post ever appears on your forum, not even for a minute.

Top 3

Be clear about the way it works

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Explain in a cheerful positive happy post with many smileys and apologies :-) that time restraints prohibit you from discussing your editing decisions on a case by case basis, and that there are no exceptions to this policy. And yes dear poster, that means your post too, so sorry.

Top 4

Reward your best members

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Reward the posters who deliver the kind content you want on your forum. Give these free writers a defined amount of sig space, allow them to control this sig space (within reason) and make the links dofollow. When you get what you want, say thank you.

Top 5

Be strong in your moderation

Don't publish any post that doesn't serve the vision you have for your forum. Delete the accounts of posters who are consistently unable to contribute the kind of content you want.

Top 6

Set your forum apart

Use this publishing model to distinguish your forum from your competitors. Don't be like everybody else, be different, be better. Be the high quality alternative to the status quo. Tastefully brag about this difference at every opportunity.

Top 7

Recruit quality members

If time permits, actively recruit the kind of writers you want on your forum, and use the higher quality discussions you can provide as your hook.

Top 8

Don't talk about spam and trolls

Remove all references to spam and bad behavior etc from your forum, as they are no longer needed. Be a forum that has nothing to fear, and thus can be entirely welcoming without reservation.

Top 9

Have a positive attitude

Smile, and be happy. Enjoy your friendships with the higher quality writers who begin migrating to your forum, and say goodbye to those you've always wanted to say goodbye to.

Top 10

Last but not least

Always have ten points in any ten point list.

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Phil Tanny, creator of is the author of those steps to a happy forum. He began making his living online in 1995. During the 90's he created the Net's first ezine host / ezine ad agency, which was sold to in 2000. He earned this day more than he earned in the previous 20 years. Since then he's taken up programming in earnest, and has created a variety of hosted publishing tools for webmasters. He's an expert at managing online communities, so really you can't go wrong by using his services to create your own communities.

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EsotericArticles's picture

This sounds like an awful,

This sounds like an awful, iron-fisted way of leading a forum. Editing posts with excessive swearing is one thing, but editing posts that do not fit your 'vision' is simply absurd. One of the points of a discussion is to acquire contradictory information so as to contrast your own with it.