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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Something I've been thinking about is how incredible a space forums are for connecting the paid professional enthusiasts of a topic or industry to the non-paid experts & other users in a community. Think Reddit AMA but better (which I actually don't think is all that great). For instance, I'm a baseball analytics enthusiast (not just the game, but the stories the data tell and trying to predict the future). Scroll down on this homepage and you'll see a "chat" schedule. FanGraphs Baseball | Baseball Statistics and Analysis

Those are paid writers -- some part time, some full time -- and they have a particular expertise they share with members of the community. It keeps us really connected to the people that run the site: from the managing editor, to the podcast hosts, to the other writers, and the site owner sometimes. It's not just a different version of a chat plugin either. There is only live chat on their site for this particular purpose. What could this look like for us? Has anyone ever tried something like this on their sites? In an old school way, it's not that much different than when my dad would buy us garage and pit passes to the Indy 500, then be invited to a small group q&a with Roger Penske or someone like that, just online.
 

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AVS Forum + several others
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Has anyone ever tried something like this on their sites?
We did a lot of live scheduled chats back in the 2000's. There was a chat popup similar to Messenger and mods would be there with the same powers to boot the occasional troublemakers.

Our most recent AMA was in 2017 sponsored by Sony with guest Joel Silver.

I set Joel up with an account & head shot avatar with enough privileges to include links and such. The users really enjoyed it. At the end we gave away a Sony 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Player.
 

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Hardcoresledder
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I've been part of Engineering development teams since the 80's. There's been a lot of collaboration tools since that time but Yes, we had direct access to the engineering group (in my case it was early Laser printers using Postscript and impact printer engineering) that needed direct feedback to engineering. They would have discussions about new products with a limited eval group that were going to get the products to test as a pre-production test. In many cases it led to firmware updates, software changes and even as far as hardware re-engineering. These things work and we proved that at DEC and Compaq in the 80-90's. I was also proud to be part of a team which was able to improve product reliability and reduce customer complaints BEFORE products hit the loading dock.

Steve
 
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