Before I start, I just want to say as a non-technical, completely un-savvy individual: Discourse is amazing. From the much-improved UX to the growing list of amazing features, this “forum” (and I use that term loosely, as I see it as being in a different class as far as communication tools go) is a whole different animal than anything I’ve ever seen. Thank you to the co-founders as well as all the many contributors for your work in building this.
With that said, I’ve been working on creating a community for experts and novices. There would be a community for them to have open discussions (Discourse), and also a way for experts and novices to speak 1-on-1, requiring that I set up profiles for each expert. My plan was to integrate some of the experts’ community stats (# of likes, # posts contributed to, etc) and maybe even their most recent posts into their profile, but now I’m wondering if a better alternative would be to scrap using a new profile and instead use their discourse profile as their site profile.
So my question is this: Is is possible to customize Discourse profiles to include functionality such as fields that would list their expertise, an interactive schedule, a method for payment processing (via PayPal/Stripe/Credit Cards), and reviews/ratings? And have these features shown only on those categorized as “experts?”
Or am I better off creating site profiles and integrating forum activity into these profiles?