Moving to the new forum for proposals and voting

there is some mention of it in the wiki

There is some threading. You will, for example, find this answer after clicking on the “1 answer” link below your post. It’s not quite comparable to mailing list threading (or the one in older forum software) but I think it is a good feature that you might have overlooked.

I thought of my proposal a “single aspect proposal”. Of course it turned out, that there are several aspects in this proposal. In a threading environment, they could be treated as threads. Here, a possible solution might be to split the topic, but that would be contrary to the intended use-case. I could not answer to your post, that got displayed, after picking “show answers”. I had no problem finding it in the following brainstorming roll though, just two posts to skip - Curious how the answer to the answer displays :wink:

I bet I answered to the post, not the topic?

Update: I guess, if the follow-up comes directly after the one it follows up, the system will not show, that it is a follow-up.

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The threading problem highlighted by @Hungerburg is actually quite an important point.
The “1 reply” function doesn’t appear to address it at all since it only lists direct replies to the post and not the subsequent ones: if I click on the button on the post by @Hungerburg above, I see your reply but I do not see the subsequent ones he made to your reply, thus to read the full thread you would have to go post by post and show all the replies each time.
This is, in fact, quite clunky if we assume that threads are an important feature while discussing large proposals that have many individual points to discuss.

I feel this might actually render the forum quite an useless resource to discuss extensively about a topic.
You could create a new topic each time you wish to talk about a specific topic, but this fragments the conversation even more.
I would imagine something like what Reddit does to work better, thus to show just the first few replies to a post and hide the subsequent ones if the thread goes too deep and then give the option to focus that particular thread by opening the full list of replies.

This feature only looks useful in a very long discussion where a lot of people reply to the same post and thus you might want to have a full list of all the replies that have been made to it.
For example: someone proposes one particular idea and a lot of people reply to it agreeing or disagreeing on some point while other people in the topic also discuss about other things.
At this point this feature becomes useful because you can filter specifically all replies to that particular post without having to look at the whole conversation.

When a post receives 2/3 replies the feature is virtually useless, because you can just scroll down and find them.

Apparently though threading is not available on Discourse by choice (Threaded discussion is ultimately too complex to survive on the public Internet? - feature - Discourse Meta) at this point it would be good to discuss whether threading is actually useful or if discussions can work without it by using some alternative methodology.
If it is decided that threading is important for these kinds of discussions, then the forum is useless.


Although you can’t reply to a “Reply” inline, you can click the down arrow :arrow_down: in the upper right hand corner to jump to its location the main list where you are able to reply.

I’m not in love with how Discourse handles replies, but I can see their reasoning for avoiding nested threading. Despite the potential for it to organize a topic, more often than not it just becomes a deeply nested mess that even harder to follow.

One good feature I’ve just learned about in this post is Reply as linked topic. This is a way to split the conversation off into a separate topic with a link back to the original. This might be a good way to have multiple separate sub-topics about a given proposal, but all linked together as well.



As explained in the proposal, i do not seek to use the forum as a single plcae of discussion. I only want to replace the mailing list with the forum for announcements. The talk page remains as an important place to discuss, just as other communications channels like this forum.

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Thank you for clarification. Indeed, my wrong impression based more on discussion in this topic here, than in your proposal.

I also had to sign up to the Mailing list. It was worth it. Some very insightful replies there. Reading the list in the gmail web interface, I do not get threading there either.

The only place for structured discussion remaining is the Wiki: If an issue comes up, a section gets created, discussion on this issue happens under that section, if it reaches a happy end, the issue can be marked resolved. The closest seems to be:

I even went so far, to create an issue myself from a mailing list post, that I deemed worth the effort. The Wiki allowed me to split a section/issue, where the poster changed topic midstream, something moderators can do here too.

I guess though, such is probably more about keeping track of discussion, documenting issues and solutions, accounting, so to say, than it is about sharing ideas. As the person behind the proposal, I consider that essential. It might even help others to read up on the subject matter.

So, IMO, the sentence Please discuss this proposal on its Wiki Talk page. should remain as is, and not specify alternative channels, which get used anyway. Instead, the proposal author shall be recommended to collect the bits there.

I updated the proposal with this. It makes sense indeed to have 1 recommended discussion platform (wiki).

I indeed also like the structure view on the wiki talk page. Every communication medium has their pros and cons or we have to develop one our self but that is not really an option.


Although I used to be a defender of threaded conversations in the past because that was what some sites implemented by default, I started to question myself when I was never able to follow a “discussion” on reddit and its multi-level threaded view.

This reaffirmation and question from Jeff Artwood again about if there are really discussions happening on these sites or not, brings an insightful reponse from someone who has been studying and creating discussion software for decades (stack overflow, stack exchange… and now discourse)


Personally, I am very happy that most of discussion happens here, in a single topic or in several topics, the ML, any number of other places, and NOT on the wiki talk page. So the talk page can serve to keep record of eminent talking points, issues and solutions. I still think, a change in the wording in the proposal process on where to discuss might be out of scope of this proposal here. Have to heart post above now :slight_smile:

Reddit used to have an actual discussions in the past, and still maybe have them on less overrun subreddits and among people using old.reddit interface.

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Great, I will see how to change the wording in the proposal. Good that you mention that it is not clear, I think it also caused some of the confusion others have. Glad we understand each other now.

I made some changes to: Proposed features/Require proposal announcements to be made on the new forum instead of the mailing list - OpenStreetMap Wiki

I tried to clarify that I only want to change the place where we announce RFC and votes. Like in the current proposal process. The wiki talk page is the main discussion platform. Discussion on the tagging mailing list and the forum are currently optional and will remain optional until somebody make another proposal to change that.

If it is still now clear let me know

I just tried to watch the tagging tag in the General category and found that this isn’t possible, tags look to only be watched/subscribed/notified globally throughout Discourse. Looking at the global usage of tagging tag, many of those threads are much more “how to” than RFCs and proposals. In contrast the rfc tag is much more scoped, but not necessarily limited to tagging-related RFCs.

I’m not sure that there is an actual problem here, but as this forum becomes more heavily used it would be handy to be able to watch/get-notified-on a more-specific tag to reliably track proposal discussions without wading through all of the how-to posts.

How about using a more specific tag, like tagging-rfc?


I noticed that too. That is why in the the proposal I propose to use the tag wiki-proposal. A tag for rfc and vote announcements

@Discostu36 Proposals on wiki are not always about tagging, see my proposal for example. Also, do you then also want to introduce tagging-vote for vote announcements? The advance of a single, multi purpose tag like wiki-proposal is that people only need to follow a single tag.

But not all proposals are about tagging. So maybe tagging-proposal?

So you want tagging-proposal for proposals about tagging and for example meta-proposal for other wiki proposals? Or do I understand wrong?

You understand correctly. Well, I don’t “want” it, it’s just an idea.