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Last revised: December 15, 2013
Forums are where you will find groupings of related threads of discussion that you can reference and contribute to; if you have a question or are looking for information that does not exist on the site, post your inquiry in the most applicable community forum. As a contributor to any of the community forums, you have:
Currently, forums are an integral part of each community that makes up Communities. There are different "groupings" of communities on the site, each serving similar purpose but slightly different audiences:
What is a community forum? What is a thread/topic? What are the community forum page OPTIONS and commands? How do I start a new thread? Inserting and Attaching images, videos, or files to posts How do I reply to a post? When I view a community forum I do not see any thread/topics/posts? I just posted a message, how come I do not see it? Special Post Types Can I sort thread/topics when viewing a forum? I cannot access a community forum I know exists. How can I contact a member who has posted already? How can I edit my post? Additional Information
A community forum is a grouping of related thread/topics of discussion.Back to top
A thread/topic is a grouping of related posts. A thread/topic contains one or more posts. The first post becomes the thread/topic and replies to the original post increment details on the thread/topic, such as the reply count or last post.Back to top
When looking at a community forum, there will be a set of available commands in various areas of the forum homepage that are the actions you can perform in that forum. The list of "common tasks" may differ according to the level of permissions that your administrator has granted to you. Some of the common OPTIONS include:
Other items in forums include the following tabs:
Other items include:
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[NOTE: you need to be a logged in Communities member to post to any forum.]
Optional items are available under the respective Tabs before you post your message:
Be sure to optimize images before uploading them for use online with a web page. Images should be below 300 KB in size and it is recommended that they be 80 KB or less (20MB maximum is allowed however). You can find out an image's size by right-clicking the image and viewing its Properties. It is best if you resize and optimize your images in a application such as Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Elements. You should also keep the image pixel size at less than 800x600 for attaching to articles.
To insert an image in your post
The image should now appear where your cursor was last placed in the text editor. Note that animated GIF files are considered video and not images (see note below regarding videos).
To delete an imageYou can delete an image one of two ways:
For videos (including animated GIF files), click the "Insert video" button (instead of the Image button) and follow the above steps.
To attach an image or file:
If the images and/or files are less than 20MB total (this is very much recommended... as providing a small example that demonstrates an issues is almost ALWAYS easier to diagnose), you can attach those to a forum posting following these steps:
Continue editing your post and then click Post.
[NOTE: you need to be a Communities member and signed to post anything to Communities.]
A community forum may not display any thread/topics if there are no thread/topics in the forum that meet the criteria of the forum tab you have selected. Back to top
A forum may or may not be moderated depending upon how the forum has been configured. After posting a message in a moderated forum you may receive a message stating that the post is awaiting moderation. Once the moderator(s) approve your post it will become visible. The moderators may choose to move, edit, or delete your post to ensure that the post is topical to the current forum. In unmoderated forums, moderators may move (or split) a thread to a more appropriate forum.Back to top
An announcement is a special post type that is always displayed at the top of a forum. The purpose of an announcement is to increase the visibility of certain topics. Note that not all Communities members can make a post an Announcement -- those who can will be able to do so in the Options tab of the Advanced editor.
A sticky thread/topic is a special post that sorts to the top of a forum for a specified amount of time. A sticky thread is similar to an announcement, whereas an announcement is displayed separate from other thread/topics and usually does not allow replies. Note that not all Communities members can make a post "sticky" -- those who can will be able to do so in the Options tab of the Advanced editor.
A Locked thread/topic is a special post that does not allow replies. Once a user locks a post or an administrator/moderator locks a thread/topic no more posts are allowed. Back to top
Yes, you can sort thread/topics when viewing a forum by Last post. The default sort for a forum is to display the newest thread/topics first (Last post descending). To sort:
If you are attempting to access a forum that you have visited before, but receive an error, there are two likely causes:
By selecting a post from that member, you can contact them via email or Conversation, depending on what they have "Allow Conversations From" set to in their Settings.
With the exception of forum and Site administrators, you can only edit your own posts in some community forums.
More information on various topics related to Communities forums can be found on the following help pages: