Slack instead of chat?

denno020

Apprentice elf
Joined
Nov 22, 2016
Messages
85
Location
Adelaide
I was in chat the other night, and I asked if there has ever been a consideration for setting up a Slack account that could be used instead of the site's chat. It was late at night so I don't think many people saw it, so I wanted to ask it in a more discoverable way.

Has there ever been the thought of setting up a Slack? If so, what has prevented it from happening?

One of the main things I can think of is that perhaps the worry would be people would just go straight to Slack, rather than the website, so Forum activity might drop off.
I've also noticed that there are notifications in chat when there is a new post, or a new user account created, but these should be able to be replicated in Slack using either an integration with the forum software, or using possibly using web hooks.

I use Slack every day for work, it's really fantastic for communicating. The ability to create threads means that if someone is scrolling back through the conversation, and they have a question about a specific message, they can create/add to a thread directly on that message, rather than having to awkwardly quote the message. Also, there is the ability to scroll back through messages (to a point if using the free version).

Interested to hear the thinking around creating an Aus Christmas Lighting Slack.
 

Derf

Therapist - Specialising in 5v mistakes
Joined
Dec 1, 2016
Messages
220
Location
Narellan, NSW
I use to use slack everyday for my old work and it is very customisable. To the point really where you could just have it pull all the chats from the website and post them into a slack channel. The couple of Negatives about replacing the onsite chat would be web activity as you stated and also Some of the Older age / less computer savy members will have a hard time adopting it. It is very easy to use I agree but its just another separate thing you have an account / login to. Its that sort of thing that is between ACL livechat and Zoom.

Pros:
*Phone Notifications of Direct Messages
*Important Announcements by Admins / Moderators
*Extensive API to integrate Forums,Xlights,Third Parties
* Video / Audio Conferencing when Zoom gets a bit chaotic

Cons:
*Just another Account to spam your emails
*Not really controlled Server side
*End User Training Required
*Traffic Loss of Website
*More questions in slack than Forums
*Lless efficient Archiving of Resolved Troubleshooting
 

scamper

Dedicated elf
Joined
Jan 5, 2014
Messages
1,131
Location
collie
Having not used it so not being able to give an unbiased opinion, I still believe the Forum has it's place, with a live chat being just a cherry on top.
I am a member of a few facebook groups and it starts to get rather tedious answering the same questions over and over again because people won't spend a bit of time and research. The forum has most of the answers that people ever want and with the chat at least a newb can be pointed direct to a thread, while the others that are just talking Sh*t can go about their business.
If you want to talk to someone about an old topic, you can always open a private chat, or whisper etc.
Not saying it cannot or shouldn't be done, I am just saying I don't know that we should give another option for people to not research.
If you know what I mean o_O
 

MrX

New elf
Joined
Sep 1, 2018
Messages
41
I like Slack but can see the benefits of the website chat. I've never looked into the hows but is there a way to get the best of both worlds and have a Slack channel embedded into the website?
 

ryanschristmaslights

Senior elf
Administrator
Joined
Jun 30, 2010
Messages
719
Location
Adelaide, Australia
The forum and wiki are really the best place for rediscoverable questions/answers, tips and other info. But yes the chat is a great resource, too, with its more immediate responses (sometimes). Later this month or next month I intend to post details about changes coming to the site. Some of these changes improve mobile usability (such as a sticky header and hamburger menu site navigation, and later device-based notifications*). External chat platforms like Slack aren't included in these upcoming changes. That's not to say AusChristmasLighting won't ever consider it (or something else), but it isn't on our radar right now.

One of the aims with this site is to limit how many accounts a person needs just to use the various areas of the site. By use I mean both contributing and finding content. This is one of the reasons we migrated away from MediaWiki last year, as IMO it didn't feel very integrated with the forum (e.g. its separate search and sub-navigation) even though usernames between wiki and forum were linked through a bridge.

*Not currently supported on Safari for Mac or any browser on iOS devices (Apple iPhone, iPad) until Apple/WebKit implements the standardised Push API.
 

denno020

Apprentice elf
Joined
Nov 22, 2016
Messages
85
Location
Adelaide
Thanks for the reply Ryan! I can definitely understand the reasoning.
As for embedding Slack into a website, I did actually look that up the other night, and there is a service that exists that allows it, but it's pretty expensive, so didn't think it would be a good fit for this site
 

Robbo

Full time elf
Joined
Dec 10, 2010
Messages
216
Location
Hastings-Victoria
big fan of 1 account fits all, which is why I am only in this forum, it's local, it's relevant, it's comprehensive, and has everything I need, can get quick answers to quick questions in chat if I can't find it in the forum, and having almost 10,000 members from around the world even at 2am in the morning when I am on nightshift I can chat with members across the globe....I haven't even used zoom yet LOL
 
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