Poll: New adjunct OT board

As you all know, we have a lot of people now who use our board, and growing. This is quite useful as we get a variety of helpful opinions and facts about stocks, as well as those wonderful reports from the field. However that gets to be a bunch of useful posts to go through, and then when we get off topic threads as well (sometimes very interesting, I admit), it gets to be too much and the board gets clogged up.

Kathie asked me what did I think about setting up an OT board just for our members with a link to it in the side panel for ready access. In other words, a “home” for OT discussions by members of our board.

I answered as follows:

I would have no objection at all if you wanted to start and moderate such a board. I’d try to get it included on the side panel, which shouldn’t be hard. My question is: Would it work? The reason I ask that would be that most people who make that kind of a post on my board want their friends and acquaintances, also on my board, to read it.

My first thought was that would make it impossible to get people to post there, but a possible solution would be to ask people making OT posts to also post them on your new board, and then when they make the post on my board have a streamer across the top saying OT: ALSO POSTED ON OUR OT BOARD. FOLLOW THE THREAD THERE BY CLICKING ON R SIDE PANEL. That way, our members could continue a conversation if it interested them. There would be the same rules on that board about maintaining civility between members and avoiding politics because when politics enters it just leads to bitterness.

My question is: Do you think it would work and would you be willing. Don’t be afraid to say no if that’s how you feel. I don’t care. I’m just suggesting it as a service, and if I know you aren’t really interested, it would save a lot of wasted effort.



  • Yes, I’d post OT topics there and follow other OT posts to it if they interested me.
  • I don’t care either way.
  • No, I prefer the system as it is. I doubt I’d post a duplicate on the OT board, or follow posts to

0 voters


I’d like to suggest another option. I’d happily set up our own forum. I find the fool boards to be antiquated and difficult to moderate. Have we grown big enough to do our own moderation and create our own community? Saul, id only to so with your blessing and involvement. Feel free to contact me at mckenzethan at Hotmail dot com.

I think this poll misses the point. It’s missing a key choice. It’s very clear that the people who post off topic are fine with the status quo (as evidenced by only 15% responding favorably to the new board idea).

Yes, I’d post OT topics there and follow other OT posts to it if they interested me.
I don’t care either way.
No, I prefer the system as it is. I doubt I’d post a duplicate on the OT board, or follow posts to

What brought this new board idea into consideration is the (large?) number of readers who really don’t care if there is another board or not, but do care that this board not have these constant off topic posts. I am curious to learn what that option would get for votes, as I suspect folks like me who looked at the poll found no option to pick.

And yes, I understand I can simply ignore the off topic posts. And I do, largely. But the reality is about 10% of the off topic posts (and threads that turn off topic after a time) have worthwhile tidbits, but it’s easy to miss them b/c of the volume of posts. “Back in the day”, I had time to read every board post, and skimmed the ones I deemed off topic. Now, I skim the titles along with the recs, to determine which posts I actually open. (I’m guessing about 10% of the posts I open these days.)



It looks like most people don’t want an adjunct board, so I’ll just have to keep cutting off threads of OT subjects that get long or are too OT.

I’d like to ask your cooperation too, as with more and more active participants we need to try to avoid OT posts, or at least avoid carrying them on after 2 or 3 posts in a OT thread. That means as much as possible avoiding comments focussed on trading, or technical analysis, or option trading, or non-growth stocks, or what Investor’s Business Daily says today (unless it’s about one one of our stocks), or whatever, and avoiding just chatting which can quickly fill up 5 or 6 posts in a row with air. The subject of the board is growth stocks, and based on results, we’ve done very well with this topic. Let’s continue.

Thanks for your understanding,




If it would be possible, I
would ask for any new posts to be a certain length.

Greater than twitter length. It seems if you can restrict a board to people who make thoughful
posts, the board will flourish. If you allow people to drive by with links then have other throw down useless comments, the board becomes a wasteland.

It isn’t the topics so much, you can discuss anything, so long as the participants are required to invest thoughtfulness into the posts.

Without that, it will eventually devolve into people driving by with thoughtless links.



Starting an adjunct OT board should be the last option considered. There are plenty of boards where posts off-topic here would be on-topic there. For example

Options: Options - You Make the Call http://discussion.fool.com/Messages.asp?mid=32995756&bid=113…
ETFs and value stocks: Value Hounds http://discussion.fool.com/Messages.asp?mid=32995589&bid=118…
High tech and other stuff: NPI http://discussion.fool.com/Messages.asp?mid=33010417&bid=114…
Mechanical investing: http://discussion.fool.com/Messages.asp?mid=33010373&bid=100…
and many more

You post the off topic post there and post a link here, as I did, check it out:

About The Market: http://discussion.fool.com/about-the-market-33008721.aspx

Denny Schlesinger


Saul et al

I have one anecdote to offer you in case it is of use. I won’t draw the conclusions as I don’t want to close out the debate but I can relay what happened.

Many years ago when TMF ran the UK boards website there was a very very popular board called HYP (High Yield Portfolio).

Anyhow at some point a debate similar to this cropped up and the board discussed the merit of separating the board into 2. One for HYP strategy and one for individual HYP stock selection. This was then voted through (I personally disagreed).

As a result:

  1. It doubled the effort in keeping track of effectively the same topic on 2 boards
  2. The people who voted for it liked it but the people who voted against it continued to dislike it
  3. There was forever confusion of what posts belonged where with cross posts and mis posts and castigations galore

Coming back to this discussion; whilst yes it’s great that we enjoy each other’s company in this community and would like to hang out together on an other board in order to kick round OT posts, however… some thoughts:-

A board with just a stream of random off topic posts seems like hard work to follow, with potentially divisive discussions and no real boundaries for moderating

There are probably plenty of boards that would make a relevant home for posts where they would not be off topic

Whilst we enjoy our community, I find it enriching to meet others who don’t come to Saul’s board elsewhere on other boards which would be missing if we just kept to our clique

It is good to encounter others on other boards and introduce Saul’s board to them - again which would not happen if we stayed within our clique.

ps - bet you can’t guess which way I voted right!


I agree with captainccs, aka Denny Schlesinger – there are ‘plenty of boards’ that offer OT conversation, uncountable boards. He linked to a few; I found this board from yet another. I also agree with anthonym, aka Ant – no reason to double the trouble for the leaders here. Keep focused on doing what you do, what you enjoy, where you excel.

(FYI, there are a growing number of ‘recs’ on links to this board from across the larger Fool chat universe, paid and unpaid. Setting and enforcing rules of engagement here will not get easier IMHO. This is not a time for democracy. There’s a ‘tipping point’ in all things, and ‘Saul’s Investment Discussions’ is in a rapid growth phase. Such the irony).

My apologies to Saul and to the community, for I’m guilty of posting ‘chatter’ messages and threads recently; since I stopped lurking and started posting about my my own move to a concentrated portfolio. I’m grateful for the content here, and as important the tone and focus. I’ve shared my new excitement and focus in a couple OT posts for the last time. Next up, some analysis and original content, as best I can bring it…

I commit to be a very polite voice to others who show up, like me as newbies. I’ll share my joy and do my best to end superfluous posts and responses. For the record, I remain Kitchkinet, the Guide for and to the uninitiated. (An old Boy Scout Order of the Arrow reference for those of you who might be interested in my last OT post).



I have one anecdote to offer you in case it is of use. I won’t draw the conclusions as I don’t want to close out the debate

Hi Ant, The debate HAS BEEN closed out, and we can close out this thread too.