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Using PHPbb Free Forums To Create Your Own Social Network

Feb 5, 2008
Looking for a place to share your hobbies and passions? Have you ever tried the forum groups on the large social network sites? Chances are the overcrowded environments have overwhelmed you. There is still hope if you are seeking to build your own online community. You can create your own free forum.

Free forums, in the form of phpbb forums are a proven social networking platform and are easy to setup. Phpbb forums started as basically online discussion web sites where people share information and chat grouped around a set of topics, but through the use of "mods" have evolved to become much more robust platforms.

Be sure to look for some key features such as

Captcha - This is that fun word challenge to prevent automated spam bots from registering and making a mess out of your forum. While it is not full proof, it can make a sizable difference in the amount of spam you have.

Email activation - Don't let someone signup without first getting them to validate their email address. Again this is just one more way of preventing the spammers from making a mess of your website.

Logo Uploading - It isn't much fun to have your own phpbb forum if you have to stare at the phpbb logo all the time.

Subdomains - unless you want ugly urls, register with a site that offers free subdomains so that you can have an easy to share url. An example of this would be SOMETHING.attheforum.com.

Themes - Don't get stuck with boring sub-silver, look for sites that offer a wide range of themes. Make your site look like it is your site.

Attachments - This can be both a plus and negative feature. While it can be great to be able to upload and share file and pictures, it can be a spammers dream. They may use it to upload their advertisements or offensive content. If you have this feature, be warned, it can drive people away if you have problems.

Global Announcements - Don't make people dig to get the latest news, put some information up front and center. Alert them to events, contests, special deals, etc.

Word Blocking - While not perfect, it can go a long way in preventing your site from going from a G rating to R or worse. It is also helpful in blocking advertising from spammers for the latest wonder drugs.

Control - This is the most important thing to the success of a forum. As the administrator for the forum, you can control who joins and how stays. You are not alone though. You can promote people to be moderators or even an administrator just like yourself. Moderators have the ability to block people being offensive, abusive, or just plain rude. It is your site, you can set the standards, and enforce the standards. I would recommend though you reserve the administrator role to only your most trusted friends, you and yourself.

Don't get lost in the crowd, create you own social network. Phpbb is great for your local community groups, clubs, organizations, friends and family.
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Can't wait to get started? Visit www.AtTheForum.com to get started with your phpbb free forum today!
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