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How are Q&A sites different than forums, and what are the pros & cons of each?

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posted 5 days ago by Nadeem

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While the underlying technologies may be similar and used for similar purposes (ie to engage a user set/community in an interactive way), I think they differentiate in a few fundamental ways:

DISCUSSION FORUM:

  • Focuses on interactive discussions and comments between users. They often may be heated arguments between 1-2 users that end up taking up pages of this forum.
  • Content is mostly organized and structured by topics/threads.
  • It is best suited for fun/social topics where users love to spend hours on sharing their opinions

Q&A Platform:

  • Focuses (as the name implies) on answers to questions and the structure is streamlined for it.
  • Take Quora as an example, where you can easily find an answer or post a question to the community.
  • Content is organized around 'tags'
    You find (in most cases) no heated debates about answers and that is intended.
    Rather a good Q&A tool brings up top answers and rewards users with reputation points.
answer 4 days ago by Rishabh Agarwal
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