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Community's choice
Free Forum
2013

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Announcing Best Forum Software of 2012

After an huge battle among all competitors all over the year 2012, we are proud to announce the final results of our yearly competition to promote the Best Forum Software, in the 3 following categories: Free, Commercial and Hosted.

With 190 comments posted and about 22.400 voters (50% more than last year), the least we can say is that the competition was this year again very popular... To finally end to an interesting result: all the best forum software of 2011 were reelected this year again!

It's now time to officially announce the results:

Best Free Forum Software: MyBB

MyBB tripled it! After earning the best free forum software category of 2010 and 2011, it was preferred against other forums by 3.585 readers, almost doubling the score of the second challenger phpBB.

Again, MyBB can thank its enthusiastic and dynamic community. MyBB 2.0 is still in development and we expect some big announcements for 2013.

Best Hosted Forum Service: ProBoards

With an amazing score of 10.742 votes, ProBoards wins for the second time the Best Hosted Forum Software Award of 2012.

With ProBoards version 5 official release getting closer and closer, providing tons of great and unique features making ProBoards the most advanced hosted forum service on the market, we do certainly understand why it got so many votes.

Best Commercial Forum Software: Burning Board

For the second time, Burning Board wins the Best Commercial Forum Software award, more over against big competitors like XenForo, vBulletin and IP.Board. Even if this is not the most known and used commercial forum software, its features, its development framework and unique style give a fresh view from Europe of what a forum software could be.

You can also consult the dedicated Best Forum Software of 2012 page for more details.

... And 2013 has just started!

So, start immediately voting for your favorite software on the new dedicated page for electing the Best Forum Software of 2013!

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ProBoards v5 on BetaZone and Support Forum

The ProBoards so expected version 5 official release is getting closer and closer. A big step in the release plan has indeed been reached by migrating the Support forum officially to v5, and with the opening of BetaZone gates.

BetaZone is indeed a specific and temporary place where ProBoards Forum Community Managers can start migrating their forums to version 5, and test the final result. We however do not know yet if this is just for a temporary testing or if these forums are migrated once forever. BetaZone requires an Access Key, most probably to gradually doing the migration of forums and allowing the ProBoards technical team to do the testing and the checking their new platform.

ProBoards version 5 is a massive rethinking of what a forum software should be in 2012 (well, 2013 too Wink, including tons of great features like:

  • Ultra fast Search feature, matching threads updated immediately on the current page
  • A entirely redesigned Administration Panel, including great ergonomic improvements like auto added entries
  • A great flexible and robust template engine allowing community managers to tune the appearance and the content of their forum
  • Support for Global Accounts, giving the possibility to have a single account on all ProBoards based forums
  • And much more improvements, that I let you discover through their Support forum...
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IP.Board Demo License Key Revoked

Two days ago, we received a mail from Lindy Throgmartin, CEO of IP.Board, asking us to remove the IP.Board demo, our license key being revoked.

Apparently, you cannot do whatever you want with their software, including letting unknown users accessing the Administration Panel. Indeed, he argues the demo was not updated for a long time (this is wrong, we updated it the 28th of April), and second, that our license key was stolen and used somewhere else.

First, Invision Power is regularly checking the matching between license keys and URLs (thank you for privacy), which makes it really easy to track bad usages of license keys and to disable a forum with a single click in their user management tool.

Second, a license key number is not what you paid for, you paid for a service, so this license key should be regenerated within a single click in case of theft, and the previous one should simply be revoked.

Anyway, fortunately, this was a demo forum, nothing critical, but I would not be happy if one day I would receive such an email as a big community administrator, telling me I have 24 hours to migrate my content, users and so on to a new forum software, just because Invision Power decided to make your life harder. Think about this twice before using proprietary software, as IP.Board.

For the time being though, no more IP.Board demo, but, fortunately, you still have many additional great software to test: XenForo, MyBB, vBulletin, SMF, phpBB,...

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Techniques for dilution, misdirection and control of Internet forum

Recently, an interesting document was revealed by Cryptome, a website, similar to Wikileaks, which tries to publish documents states and private companies have kept secret. This document, named The Gentleperson's Guide To Forum Spies (spooks, feds, etc.) is about how to spy, misdirect, dilute and create disinformation on Internet forums. After reading it, you might probably notice that you already encountered such attempts on your forum, and that, maybe, your forum has several members being counterproductive and making everything to muffle your voice and the voice of your community.

In addition to giving some tips about how to disinform, track and spot people doing it, the original author, from the form COINTELPRO US agency, explains 6 techniques about manipulating a community and its forum:

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New Features for Forum for Pages Facebook plugin

Last October, we introduced you the Forum for pages product, a Facebook plugin integrating a nice forum software into your Facebook page.

This product was particularly useful since Facebook was planning to remove its official Forum application.

Forum for Pages - Main Topics Page
Forum for Pages - Main Topics Page
Forum for Pages - Timeline Homepage
Forum for Pages - Timeline Homepage

Back to present, Forum for pages has continued evolving and got more and more features, including:

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