How should we structure this site?

This discussion is a continuation of the conversation in this thread.

This post is a wiki post - anyone can edit it. Last updated: 29/05/2019 by @james

The structure of this forum is still evolving. We want to use categories and subcategories to help people find their way around but are cautious of ‘over-structuring’ the forum; creating too many categories and subcategories risks making it seem inactive and overwhelming.

We’re also keen that the structure evolve alongside the community itself, responding to the needs and priorities of members.

Here’s the logic behind it currently:


Key:

Category :unlock: (public) / :lock: (members-only) - description

Subcategory - description


Forum structure

Repair in your community :unlock: - an area for conversations about planning, organising, running, evaluating and new ideas for repair events. The idea here is to connect people with others in their area and facilitate practical peer support around running/attending/improving repair events.

English :unlock: - an area for English-speaking members to talk and compare notes about repair events. Home to the Restart Party Kit in English.

Español :unlock: - an area for conversations specific to repair events in Spanish-speaking countries and home to the Restart Party Kit in Spanish. Note: there’s an open question here about how to provide resources in Spanish but also provide spaces for national/regional conversations

Français :unlock: - an area for conversations specific to repair events in Quebec and other French speaking regions/countries and home to the Restart Party Kit in French

Italiano :unlock: - an area for conversations specific to repair events in Italy and home to the Restart Party Kit in Italian

[Other languages as membership of this forum grows]

Repair stories :lock: - an area to discuss personal experiences of repair (e.g. our latest repairs), ask for advice, share lessons learned and to celebrate successes.

Repair on the airwaves :lock: - an area where we’ll publish our radio show and podcast, and we encourage you to get involved, sharing ideas and even contributing to shows

Offers & Requests :unlock: - an area to donate or request spare stuff (tools, spare parts, devices…)

Right to repair: policy & activism :unlock: - an area for conversations about the wider world of repair, such as repair in the news, sharing interesting articles or links about electronics/electricals. The idea here is to discuss the geopolitical side of repair as well as contextualise the work we do (linking local repair to global issues).

Repair Data :unlock: - An area to discuss and analyse data on repair.

Events :unlock: - an area to plan/discuss/promote regional, national or international events related to the world of repair (e.g. Fixfests, conferences etc. NOT Restart parties or other community repair events)

Fixfest UK :unlock: - an area to plan & discuss the first ever UK Fixfest (Manchester, Oct 2018)

Local chat :lock: - an area for conversations about what’s happening locally. Displays subcategories only visible to members of local discussion groups that have their own subcategories enabled, such as London.

Italia :lock: - This category is for Italy-focused discussions that are too local to be relevant to the wider community.

London :lock: - This category is for London-focused discussions that are too local to be relevant to the wider community.

Small Talk :lock: - an area for miscellaneous conversations that don’t fit in the other categories, but are still important for community building (like the ‘Introduce Yourself’ thread)

Help & Feedback :lock: - an area where members can ask for help using this site and find useful resources like the community guidelines, privacy policy etc.

User guides :lock: - a library of guides and tutorials covering how to use restarters.net

Feature requests :lock: - submit requests for new features and vote for your favourites

Bug reports :lock: - somewhere to report any bugs found on restarters.net

If you have any comments or requests about this, feel free to post below!

Proposed change #1 - split Electronics Repair into two categories

Based on a conversation in this thread, here’s a proposal to split the Electronics Repair category in two - one category to focus on personal stories and experiences of repair and the other to focus on policy, activism and repair in a global context…


Before

Electronics Repair - an area for conversations about the wider world of repair, such as repair in the news, sharing personal stories of repair, sharing interesting articles/links about electronics. The idea here is to help people bond over a shared interest in electronics and repair as well as contextualise the work we do (linking local repair to global issues).

Repair on the airwaves - an area where we’ll publish our radio show and podcast, and we encourage you to get involved, sharing ideas and even contributing to shows


After

Repair stories - an area to discuss personal experiences of repair (e.g. our latest repairs), ask for advice, share lessons learned and to celebrate successes.

Repair on the airwaves - an area where we’ll publish our radio show and podcast, and we encourage you to get involved, sharing ideas and even contributing to shows

Right to repair: policy & activism - an area for conversations about the wider world of repair, such as repair in the news, sharing interesting articles or links about electronics/electricals. The idea here is to discuss the geopolitical side of repair as well as contextualise the work we do (linking local repair to global issues).

UK - an area to discuss topics specific to the UK (e.g. UK government policy, Brexit etc.)

[Other countries as community grows]

What does everyone think?

  • Yep, sounds good. Do it.
  • Hmm, more discussion needed.
  • No, I don’t think we should consider this.

0 voters

Thanks for the feedback @Panda and @Dave - I’ve made those changes :slight_smile:

We’ve also added a category for events:

An area to plan, discuss and promote regional, national or international events related to the world of repair (e.g. Fixfest) - not for community repair events.

Proposed addition: Local Groups

Here’s a question: how can we make space for super-local conversations within Restart groups without a load of new categories that risk making the forum hard to navigate and bombarding people with notifications?

We think creating groups is the answer. Groups behave like separate spaces to the rest of the forum - similar to individual mailing lists. They offer a space for group messages in the local langauge, member list and activity stream displaying member’s posts across the wider forum. They can be private or public, free to join, access-by-request or closed.

The idea is these can be used alongside the group management tools in the Fixometer part of restarters.net to help groups co-ordinate - especially for new/emergent groups and those who might not use external communications tools (mailing lists etc.)

We’ve created a London group to try out this idea - feel free to take a look.

Any thoughts/input welcome :slight_smile:

More questions about navigation & finding stuff on the site…

I came across an interesting Discourse implementation for a neighborhood in SE London: https://se23.life/

SE23 is a different kind of community, but they’ve done some fairly unique stuff that we could learn from (with the caveat that some of this stuff is built using plugins we might not be able to use due to our hosting plan).

Navigation

They’ve built-in ‘local recommendations’ topic in the main navigation: https://se23.life/t/recommended-shops-and-services-in-se23/763. This got me thinking about whether we could do something similar for the Restart Party Kit to make it more visible (even if it’s some kind of index or resources we can update).

Should we add a menu item for the Restart Party kit (or an index of party planning resources)?

Events

They’ve integrated an events system into Discourse (see the ‘agenda’ category: https://se23.life/agenda and Calendar: https://se23.life/calendar). Discussions in the agenda category have a date and time. You can also download a .ics or add it to your Google cal.

This has got me thinking about potential, future integration with the events element of restarters.net. (a discussion for another time when we have more capacity to think about this more)

Tags

I like the way SE23 have set up tags (see here). They’re categorised (and are colour-coded with icons) - a nice, granular way of navigating specific topics.

We don’t really have a way of using tags yet, but they could be a useful alternative to creating more groups or categories. It’d be good to talk about creating some conventions.
Are tags useful? How could they help us structure the space and make finding content easier?

Public categories

Some categories are now public (see original discussion for full details). Wiki post above updated :arrow_up: