Before there was an ‘app for that’ there was a ‘forum’ for almost anything under the sun. Let’s say you want to learn how to change your oil? If you search “change oil” under discussions in Google you will get over 1.5 million results. Are you a fan of the band “Pavement”, if so you can find communities discussing this band…and I am pretty sure there is not an app for that.
One of the real strengths of forum communities is precisely how they reflect the ‘long tail’ of the Internet. In contrast to the big mixing bowl that is Twitter or Facebook, on forum communities you can find people that share your interests…even if those interests are discussing knitting in Sweden, The Hunger Games or whatever floats your boat.
The value of these targeted communities has been often overlooked in the media but when people need to know how they can possibly edit in multi-cam using Final Cut or what real people are saying about a product then they turn to forums for answers–and so far nothing has come close to meeting this market demand besides forums.