Well, in an attempt to start discussions, I’m going to add an RSS feed post bot to ECC.
This bot will take the RSS feeds from places like BBC, Lifehacker, maybe a few iDevice blog sites, and post threads with excerpts from those places.
These threads will start discussions, because when members are finished reading the articles they will hopefully post their thoughts about it on the thread.
Any forum owner’s first though about this would probably be “Hey, wait, won’t this take traffic away from the site?” Well, I don’t think so if I do it correctly.
If I only use the RSS feeds from news sites and blogs, then there won’t be any unwanted competition between my community and say, another forum. So, I don’t plan to add any forums to that bot’s list, and if I do, there will probably be very few.
Right now I’m not sure whether I should make a new forum to keep all this stuff in, because this bot will definitely make a lot of threads, or make it post in the blog forum.
I will also be adding a news bar to the sidebar of the forum using http://www.blastcasta.com/add-news-to-your-website.aspx, and will be using the forum RSS feed for that.