12-08-2006 06:43 PM
How do I participate in the Forums?
If you are new to online Forums then some of the terminology may be confusing and you many not know where to begin to participate in the forums. Our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section is a great resource for learning more about:
- User Maintenance
- General Forum Usage
- Reading and Posting Messages
Just click on one of those links to learn more, but here is a quick primer on participating in our forums.
Category - A group of discussion Forums of similar topics or interests.
Forum - A group of discussion Threads of similar topics or interests.
Thread - A line of discussion that contain Post(s).
Post - An individual Comment or Reply within a Thread.
Okay, it is as clear as mud now right? It works like this. I go to a specific Category to find a Forum containing discussion Threads about a subject that I want to either create a New Thread about or Reply with a Post about an existing discussion Thread.
Our Forums are organized in three (3) Categories:
- Fishing Community
- Fishing Forums
- Back at the Dock
Within those three categories we currently several dozen Forums to discuss specific topic areas, including Classifieds and Reviews sections. Within each of those discussion Forums members can create New Threads of discussion or Reply to existing threads.
When you enter a Forum you will see a list of existing Threads and a large New Thread button above them. You can choose to create a New Thread to start a new discussion that falls within the topic scope of that Category. Or you can click on the link to one of the existing Threads which will take you to that discussion Thread where you will see all the Posts made by members in Reply to the original Thread starters Post.
When you enter an existing Thread you will see a large Post Reply button. If you click this then you can create a Post message in Reply to the posts made by other members in that Thread.
If you create a New Thread you will need to enter a Title and Message before selecting the Submit New Thread button. PLEASE make your Title as content relevant as possible so it will be easier for others to quickly discover what your Thread Post is about and to make Searches more successful. You should also use our Search tool on the home page and located in the Navigation Menu above to check to see if someone has already started a thread on the subject you wish to post about. You may find that your question is already answered or that you want to add a Reply post to a Thread that someone has already started. If after searching you don't find a similar Thread proceed to start your own. After you have searched a topic a few times you will grow to appreciate the use of content relevant Thread and Post Titles.
Now back to posting options....you will notice several formatting options within the Message block and above the Message edit window. You can choose Font, Style, Bold, Italics, Underline, Align Left, Center, Right, lists, web links, email address links, photo links, quotes, etc. in those formatting choices. To the right of the Message edit window you'll see Smilies. You can use these to attempt to communicate an emotion related to your post. Whether you are happy with the or Shocked with the these can be fun to add to your post. If you move your mouse and hover over each one you'll find out what each smiley is called. You can also choose a Post Icon from the group under the Message Edit window. These will show up beside your Post Title when listed.
There are Additional Options available to you before you submit your new post. These are located below the Submit New Thread or Submit Reply buttons. You can choose to Show your Signature, Parse links in the text of your message, Disable Smilies in your message, Attach Files (like Photos), set your Subscription notification preference for this thread, choose a folder to save it in and/or Post a Poll. After making all your choices simply select Submit New Thread or Submit Reply and you've added your thoughts and opinions to the membership.
Linking a photo in the Photos gallery to a post in the Forums: If you would like to reference a photo in the gallery within a post you make in the forums, simply go the photo in the Photos section and look for the BBCode: under the picture. Copy that code and paste it within the body of your post in the forums and it will show up within the post.
Attaching Photos to a Forum Post: If you want to add a photo to a post in the "Forums" section it is a very simple process. The attached photos have to be under 800x600 pixels dimension wise and less than 250kb to upload, but the forum software can automatically resize them for you if the original image is under 2.5MB in size. If it is larger than that you will need to resize the photo to something under 2.5MB before attempting to attach it.
Step 1: Click on Post New Thread or Reply, depending on whether you are starting a new thread discussion topic or are replying to an existing thread. If creating a new thread you will need to enter a Thread Title and your Message.
Step 2: Then above the Message window click on Manage Attachments.
Step 3: When you see the pop-up window, select the Choose File button and select the location on your computer where the image you wish to upload is located. You can attach up to five photos at a time to your forum post.
Step 4: When you have selected up to 10 photos that you wish to attach to your post, click the Upload buttton located under the Upload File from your Computer tab. This may take a few seconds depending on the size of your photo file. If you get an error message that says your file is too large, you will need to use a photo resizing program to make resize it to make it smaller. Try reducing it 50% and see if that works. The program will automatically resize photos up to about 2.5 in size.
Step 5: Next close the pop-up Manage Attachments window and you will see the file names that you selected in the Manage Attachments section of the Options panel. All that is left to do is to click on Submit the New Thread or Submit the Reply. Your photos should be attached to your forum post and when you click on them they will open in a larger pop-up window.
This may all seem very strange and confusing at first, but hopefully it will begin to make sense once you try it a few times. "The best way to learn is to jump in." My dad used to say that as he threw us in the water! Before you know it you'll be an old pro. I'm confident of it! Thanks for participating in our forums as I firmly believe that it is the shared collaboration of North Carolina anglers that will make NCangler.com your online guide to fishing in North Carolina.
To see an Archive list of our Categories and Forums click the Archive link at the bottom of each page.