An old Jive employee: So happy to discover Discourse!


(Patrick Lightbody) #1

I just want to say how happy I am that Discourse exists. I was one of the first handful of employees at Jive Software, which was one of the very first commercial forums software vendors.

Since then, they’ve expanded and moved on to “social enterprise” software and the focus on threaded discussions has really been lost in their product.

At my day job (New Relic) we’ve been looking for a threaded discussion tool that is not called Google Groups. Since the open source stuff is all crap, the only real options were Lithium and Jive, and they aren’t much better (unfortunately).

I was starting to think that perhaps I was crazy for wanting clean, modern, efficient threaded discussion forums. I mean, if other people wanted that too shouldn’t there be something already? And then I found Discourse :slight_smile:

Amazingly, in just a matter of months Discourse is already a more user-friendly, modern version of online forums that any of the other options - commercial or otherwise.

We may still end up purchasing Jive or Lithium for now, just because it’s ready today. But if they can’t get their basic forums at least close to what Discourse is already doing, I can guarantee we’ll be making the jump. So I just want to say: keep up the fantastic work!


How does discourse stack up to Jive today? (2015)
(Jeff Atwood) #2

Thanks for the praise!

To be clear though, it would be a stretch to call us threaded – you can optionally expand a post by clicking on it to see its parent, and any direct children.

We also offer filtering topics by users, and a “best of” mode for long topics to get to the greatest hits of a topic rather than reading dozens or hundreds of posts.


(Patrick Lightbody) #3

Yeah, I can see it’s not exactly “threaded” but just the simple (but very useful!) way you can quote multiple chunks of text in the discussion is a big win. Combine that with the ability to reply to individual messages, and you’ve basically got all the perks of threaded discussions.

One feature I’d like to see is reply-by-email and other email-related features. I know it may not be the focus of Discourse any time soon, but I’m a big fan of mechanisms that can move existing email threads in to the forum in a seamless way.


(Jeff Atwood) #4

Reply via email is a huge priority to us, right after what we need to make our three partners happy… It’s probably the number one big picture item I want to get to.

Mainly because I agree, mailing lists need to die, they are every bit as awful as most PHP forum software. And they are squarely in our crosshairs.


(Patrick Lightbody) #5

Fantastic. Reply-by-email is important and really hard to do well – it’s often botched.

But I’d also love to see easy ways to take an email thread and turn it in to a online discussion. It’s really tricky and there are a lot of workflow issues and it may be unsolvable.

But in an ideal world I’d be able to interrupt an email discussion and cc/bcc a special email address that somehow moves/invites/who-knows all the participants over to the forums :smile: