What are UK Forums?
UK Forums do slightly different things than MatterMost - here's a summary:
MatterMost is for:
- chat, that gets lost quickly in the stream of messages
- asking someone for help
- finding a person or group
Forums are for:
- focussed discussions
- asking specific questions or finding a specific topic
- searching for information easily
So, if the issue needs longer term attention, where contributions go towards making decisions, perhaps, or where differences of approach need closer examination, a Forum Topic can act as both a focus and catalyst for discussion. Also, you can look back throught the topic's contributions to see how a decision was made - this often helps to promote ideas and help towards reaching agreements.
Important: You should have already completed the steps outlined on the READ THIS FIRST page before attempting to access UK Forums. Otherwise you will not have an account to log in to.
To access UK Forums you can:
Click on the UK Forums icon on the Hub homepage. It will look like this:
Type https://base.extinctionrebellion.org.uk into the URL bar of your browser and hit Enter.
You will then see a screen that looks like this:
The easiest option is to click the login 'with XR UK Hub' button. Or enter your username and password (same as for the Hub) and hit Log in.
Note: We recommend adding UK Forum to your browser's bookmarks/favourites so it's easier to find in future.
Our Forums are organised in much the same way as Mattermost, but the format is not quite the same. Here's what you'llsee when first you join UK Forums...
Forums 'Landing Page'
When you get to the Forums 'Landing Page' you will find a complete list of the forums you're joined to by your Hub Group Membership. For ease of reference, your forums are classified into 8 Categories which reflect the different Regions/Nations and Working Groups (or Circles) that make up XR UK. Here's a typical Landing Page showing all 8 Categories:
On the Landing Page, you'll find the forums from each of your Hub Groups as clickable link names in the different Categories. If there's a new post waiting for your attention, you'll see an 'unread' or 'new' button - click to go to the flagged post. There are several other functions, which are descibed in more detail below but first, let's see how you can make a reply ...
Reading and Replying to Posts
When you click on new or unread, you will be directed to the specific topic, where individual posts are listed in chronological order. If visiting the topic for the first time, you will see the initial post. If you've visited this topic before, you will see the post immediately after that visit. In the image, below, the "17/18" figures denote the 17th of 18 posts.
You may reply to any individual post, or make an additional post using the "Reply" button. When you reply, you enter your text in the left hand box - and you will see how the text will be displayed when your reply is posted, to the right. This is very useful for text formatting (Bold, Italics, Markdown formatting, etc).
When you've finished your post, click the Reply button, below the text box, and your reply post will be added to the Topic. It really is that simple - and, if you need to edit, after it is posted, just click the Pencil icon to re-enter the text box to edit.
Now you know how to Post a Reply, it's time to look more closely at some Advanced Functions available...
Using the Landing Page
Here, we have highlighted 7 of the functions you will find on the Landing Page ...
Using my Forums
What can I see?
The 8 top-level Categories - Help, Regions/Nations, Culture, etc. - are visible to everyone but your membership of Hub Groups will determine the individual Public and Private forums that are available to you.
How do I join other Public Forums?
You can join any Public forum by searching for the associated Hub Group by clicking on the 3 Bars (Hamburger) icon in the top right and selecting 'Groups for Forums'.
This will give you the Hub Groups list, which you can search by entering text in the box at the top, or simply scroll down to find the one you want. Click on Join to join the group and get access to its Public forums, or click on the name for more info. See - Find and join now...
How do I join a Private forum?
To join a Hub Group's Private forums, you will have to be invited into the Hub Group, so you will need to ask one of the Group Admins to join you via the Hub.
Why Read-Only forums?
Some discussions may be read-only for most people, with only certain people able to contribute (e.g. Hints and Tips).
Help - page does not exist?
Sometimes you will see a page like this:
You may see this because you have clicked a link, on another Platform like Mattermost, but that link goes to a Forum you are not joined to. What to do:
- If you know the Forum is Public, and you also know the Hub Group, you can find it yourself (see above).
- If you can't find the name of the Forum, then you'll need to ask the person who posted the link to give you its name and that of the Hub Group. If the forum is Private, this may involve you being invited to the Hub Group that owns the Forum.
Making your post.
When to start a new topic?
Before starting a new topic, it is always worth checking whether the issue has already been discussed (by looking through the previous topics) - it can be very frustrating when someone begins a fresh topic with a question that has already been answered.
Quote text from other posts?
Simply highlight the bit of text you want to quote in the source post and you will see a "Quote" button appear above your highlighted text like this:
If you have not yet started editing your reply click the button and the editing pane will open in the bottom half of the screen, the selected text will be inserted as a quote with the source post and contributor linked to it. You then carry on and edit your reply as normal.
If you are already editing a reply, or starting a fresh topic, then in the top half of the screen, above the editing pane, you can browse around as normal and select text from any post, and the "Quote" button will insert it in the editor for you.
Add a link to a document or image?
Format my posts: Bold/Italic etc.?
There are simple ways to make your message more readable:
- **bold** displays as bold
- _italic_ displays as italic