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Keeping open threads open ?.


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Hello,

 

I've thought about this topic in the past, and knowing it's probably common amongst roleplayers, I looked through three pages on here to make sure it wasn't already touched upon. Seeing as how this thread was created - you now witness my poor research results.

 

Anyway, Open Threads. For something so inviting it sure is hard to drag people into them. Seriously, you'd think they'd lap up the opportunity to get their new or half-used character some fresh interaction, but no. They gotta be snobs about it.

 

Okay, that last part was a bad joke, but really - has it always been so hard. I've only been writing for a short amount of time, so I'm really unaware if this is singular to some communities or just forum-wide.

 

So far, I've only experienced the prior.

 

If you don't go out of your way to come up with the idea, explicitly state the thread is private and then make the most extra post - nobody and I mean, nobody, puts in a lick of effort.

 

But why not?

 

To me, an open thread means limitless opportunity. Well, less limited to a private and static one. Your character could stumble upon valuable allies and travel into other - possibly also open - threads, which would make an already interesting interaction that much better. Plotting would be ten times easier too due to all the connections they could have made. In just two or three threads no less!!

 

So, dear members, I ask you:

 

1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why?

2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them?

3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not?

 

And finally,

 

4. Are people in your community (s) willing to join in on open threads? Is it not a forum wide thing like I initially thought?

 

 

Note: using a tablet, will fix spelling errors later.

 

thanks

alexsunny

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I have a love-hate sort of relationship with them. It's difficult for me to write them, and I've found a lot of people don't write opens in a very inviting way. They inadvertently tend to put the onus

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I have a love-hate sort of relationship with them. It's difficult for me to write them, and I've found a lot of people don't write opens in a very inviting way. They inadvertently tend to put the onus on the responder to get the two interacting and to decide how they meet and all of that. Even worse is when you also have a writer that's a very internal type of writer. What I mean by that is that they focus on internal monologue, feelings, and reflection, which isn't in itself a bad thing but can be very difficult to respond to; worse when the thread's an open.

 

I will jump into them when I see that they've been sitting a long time. In my experience, it depends on the community how open threads are received and treated, but more and more communities I've seen don't utilise them much, if at all. I purposely fostered one of mine by setting numerous examples to at least answer them at some point, and for the most part the members follow through with this. Unfortunately life is life and 2020 was 2020, so a lot of them sat for longer than members were willing to wait.

 

So, all that to say, I think the issue with open threads are two-fold; communities not knowing how to use them, and writers not knowing how to write them invitingly. I've also run into players that want what they want and have no interest in anything else that may also be fun to explore because it isn't what they want. I've watched players outright sabotage themselves because they were too focused on the plot they thought they wanted they completely missed every opportunity for the plots they could have. So that could be a contributing factor, too. Some in the roleplaying community can be awfully self-centred and short-sighted, and unfortunately I think self-centred behaviour in the RP community can function like a disease and spread. It's hard to care when others make it clear they don't.

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I agree with @Arceus and want to add into the "write an open thread invitingly" thing.

 

I've seen too many threads where the "invitation" being some sort of haphazard thing like "bumping into each other". Do you know how hard it is to make that feasible? Its more likely that the two people will just keep walking than it would be for them to strike up a conversation. I have made stuff work but I figured out how to be the third party in that situation. instead of the person that was being bumped into. It often derails the person that wrote it though, they were expecting your character to be the bumpee or bumper or whatever and were expecting that direction. 

 

That said:

  1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why? Meh. I have no strong feelings either way but I do tend to reach out to new players and find a plot that I know we can move with and create a character arc with.
  2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them? Neither. I am like Arc and I jump in when they've been sitting for a hot minute. I try to give other members the opportunity to jump in so I'm not the only one in all the threads.
  3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not? I think I explained it above. The threads are either not inviting or they invite me in a way that doesn't really work, whether it be by situation, character interaction etc. They often feel like the person wants a particular type of interaction and I'm not sure I can fulfill that with all of my characters.
  4. Are people in your community (s) willing to join in on open threads? Is it not a forum wide thing like I initially thought? Some people do, some people don't. 

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1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why? I like them because sometimes I don't always thread with a large variety of people- not on purpose, I have lots of long term plots with a handful of people and usually they get my attention first, and an open thread gives me a chance to throw my character at a member I maybe haven't had a chance to write with a lot. They do make me anxious when I make them. I always worry they won't get taken. 

 

2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them? Since I'm Staff, I usually wait. I won't jump in right away because I want other people to have the chance. If it's been sitting, I'll take it. If it really interests me/is a character I really want to write with, I'll take it ASAP. 

 

3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not?  I don't find them limiting. There's lots of potential and because of the way my site works, we have a lot going on, it's easy to make them interesting. 

 

4. Are people in your community (s) willing to join in on open threads? Is it not a forum wide thing like I initially thought? Open threads get taken pretty quickly on my site. There are some that sit, but it's usually when the thread was posted in the middle of an on site month and everyone is already 10+ threads deep. But, most of the time, they get taken within a few days. 

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1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why? I like having open threads to jump into. But I hate trying to start them. It gives you an opportunity to interact with a character that you might not have otherwise!

 

2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them? When they're there, I definitely do my best find a way to jump in. I have muses that are just like "gimme all the things, damn it". And refuse to be satisfied, even when they're already in 56486454 threads.

 

3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not? Not at all!  As I said above, some of my muses are very very chatty and demanding. I can always find a way to make it work.

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1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why?   I personally love them. To me it offers possibilities. Whether its a story to build upon- ic friendships or foes, it is just an open space that both typists characters can benefit from

 

 

2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them?  I look for some if I am not sure how to enter my character into a city etc. I truly enjoy the surprise at how the plot in the thread can twist.

 

3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not? Never. I often make open ones. And though it may not be right away- I always end up with someone jumping in  and a good story.

 

And finally,

 

4. Are people in your community (s) willing to join in on open threads? Is it not a forum wide thing like I initially thought?  Honestly I have to say no. There are about ten percent that will, because they enjoy writing with my characters and expect the unexpected. But I will say its not something you experience all the time. I have had opens sit months before someone ventures in. Sometimes I think its because writers ( not all mind you) are less likely to join a thread that they are not sure of. But its a fact I see in many places.

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1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why? | I like open threads! I certainly do not rely on them for deep plots or anything, but a simple thread with another character they are great for. I feel like sometimes it is hard to fit how the characters meet or how to insert your character into their starter post, but it can make for some fun threads now and then. I feel like open threads can help make a forum more welcoming because it can be difficult for newer members to jump in when they only see a board full of private topics.

2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them? | I join open threads often. If i feel like i can pick up another thread, then I try to join opens. 

3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not? | I have to agree open threads limit in a way. You have to force the story to result in characters meeting or interacting sometimes and you don't have the luxury of having plotted something out beforehand. 

4. Are people in your community (s) willing to join in on open threads? Is it not a forum wide thing like I initially thought? | I feel like player in my community are accepting of open threads. I have been on lots of communities in the past and open threads seem to have a varying popularity - but for understandable reasons, I believe. I understand not preferring open threads. A lot of older communities I have played in open threads were almost the main form of thread so they don't bother me so much.

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1. Do you like or dislike open threads? Why? 

I love open threads for all of the possible character surprise developments that can happen from them. For example I had my sixth grader help a clumsy Sophomore pick up her books after she tripped and they ended up going on a treasure hunt together through the castle. Or, they make the perfect place for returning players to jump in and change where certain threads are going. I like the endless possibilities and opportunities of Open threads.

2. Do you go out of your way to find them or just jump in when you see one? Or do you just outright avoid them?

I often start them since I play a buttload of characters and it gives my community plenty of potential interactions.

3. Do you feel open threads limit you? Why or why not? 

Not really. Open threads and closed threads both have their place in my community. Open allows for a lot of freedom to flow. Just the other day one of my players who hopped into an Open thread with me said she discovered something about her character just through the beginning of the interaction. It's amazing what can pop up.

4. Are people in your community (s) willing to join in on open threads? Is it not a forum wide thing like I initially thought?

My community is absolutely willing to join open threads just as much as closed threads. It all depends on what they are looking to get out of it. If it's set up for a side plot, then it's a closed thread but more often than not for IP it's open threads everywhere.

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