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In case you don't know, Discord is somewhat of a chatroom. (I know that Worldbuilding already has them). Discord is much more polished as a communication medium, you can create different 'channels' within the main server and switch between them with a click. Roles may be given to users and permissions can be allocated by admins and moderators. New channels for the discussion of certain questions may be created on a whim, as well as users being able to talk to each other through private messages.

These channels can be text based, but voice channels can also be created, if users choose to join (given that they have the necessary permissions) they can interact with other members through speaking as well.

Overall, it seems like a good addition to allow Worldbuilding users to interact with each other, more polished than current chat rooms and with the ability to actually talk to each other.

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    $\begingroup$ With the exception of private messaging it doesn't sound like Discord has many features beyond what chat here offers. That said could you clarify what you are suggesting? It would probably be good for you to write up a proposal or something in your post so people know what you are getting at. $\endgroup$ – James Mar 20 '18 at 15:57
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah, sure thing. I'll restructure it extensively, although it may be around 12 hours till I get time. If you deem it necessary to put it on hold, please do. I can see how unconvincing the argument currently is. $\endgroup$ – Lutro Mar 20 '18 at 16:01
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I don't think this is a good idea - the chat is good enough for what the community needs, but if you find others feel free to create a private Discord space for WorldBuilding.SE and announce it in the Factory Floor, WorldBuilding.SE's main chat room, to see who else wants to join.

As you have already mentioned StackExchange provides a chat and each site has their own rooms. There is one main room and users with more than 100 reputation can create their own chat rooms.

These chat rooms are already integrated into the existing reputation and privilege system, allowing people with a network wide rep of 10k to handle flags that highlight rude/abusive behaviour and mods have their mod powers to kick/ban people if they need to. It works well with the features of StackExchange, such as bots that feed the important messages from Main, Meta or our Blog. There are room owners with special privileges that allow them to handle people that stray too far from Be nice., too.

Voice chat can be nice, but I am not sure if there is so much demand in voice chatting with other members of the community. Some users have a podcast where, but things like that are generally outside of the StackExchange network and not actively supported by SE. I don't see why SE should support a second chat or switch from their current system.

SE is not built around private messages. This has been asked and answered lots of time throughout the network. Have a look at Any way to send a personal message to another user?. From this answer:

The consistent response to this is that it's a bad idea, because:

  1. It could hide information from the community: useful information transmitted privately is unavailable to other readers, subverting the core purpose of the site.

  2. It could be used to harass other users ("Answer my question!", "Accept my answer!", "Yer momma [sic!] so fat she overflows the stack!", etc...)

That answer also explains that mods have the special power to be able to send private messages to users - but this is reserved for critical messages, not for day-to-day social interactions. SE is built around answers and questions and the chat is their way to compromise to give people a chance to socialise - and I don't think that this should change.

If you want to chat with people on Discord feel free to drop into the Factory Floor and ask if people want to join you. Just to mention a few projects outside of the normal network activities, we have the Blog and there is the Podcast. The Universe Factory is the chatroom that is mainly used for these things, but it could be a private Discord server if that's what you and others prefer.

There is also the story-go-round, a collaborative story whose main points can be read here. If you want to start a chat room for something like a game, similar to The Back Room: Live Tabletop games on RPG.SE or like the story-go-round room for collaborative story creation or for a story you are working on and some more elaborate brainstorming dedicated to the topic - by all means, create your own chat room and post the link to the Factory Floor so that people know your room exists. The chat can be used in a lot of different ways, all of which are integrated into how the whole network is supposed to work. It's a very versatile tool.

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  • $\begingroup$ That's a reasonable argument, discord just tends to be much more organized and easier to navigate. It has a block feature for unwanted private messages and generally, people tend not to message eachother outside of the server anyways. I've been part of many discord communities over time and users tend to build much stronger bonds than in chatrooms. The biggest difference is the organizational aspect, you dont need a different server for every chatroom, you can just use the channels. Ive seen pictures of dogs in the main chatroom, whereas in discord you could have a channel dedicated to pets. $\endgroup$ – Lutro Mar 20 '18 at 16:20
  • $\begingroup$ @Lutro There is not so much activity that would warrant this and SE in general tries to be less "socially oriented" and more "Q&A" oriented". We have chatrooms for discussions about certain questions/answers if there are for example too many comments, we have a main chatroom (Factory Floor) and we have one for Blog/Podcast (Universe Factory). Sometimes there are other rooms, for example we had one for discussing closing/reopening, one for a collaboration story, ... but chatrooms are frozen after 14 days without any activity, so none of them are open right now. $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Mar 20 '18 at 16:31
  • $\begingroup$ The closing after 14 days is irritating, as I'd love to finish our story. And I will continue to disagree about messages being a bad idea until I hear an actually irrefutable argument. None of the current ones are very good. I personally believe that it will eventually be allowed, once someone figures out how useful it could be. Sort of like how chat was resisted for way too long before they figured out that it would make the whole site better. All that being said, the current integrated chat system is good enough. $\endgroup$ – AndyD273 Mar 20 '18 at 17:43
  • $\begingroup$ @AndyD273 Mods can apparently unfreeze rooms $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Mar 20 '18 at 17:46
  • $\begingroup$ I just don't see the need to freeze them in the first place, especially if they are never going to go away once they get a certain number of posts. Maybe there is some logic I am not aware of $\endgroup$ – AndyD273 Mar 20 '18 at 17:53
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    $\begingroup$ @AndyD273 According to Why do inactive chat rooms become “frozen”? the reason is that there is a list of "active rooms". Which is not that long here on WorldBuilding (~1 page), but might very well be on SO (~42 pages). It's basically just so that necro-posts won't clutter SO's first page of active rooms. $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Mar 20 '18 at 17:58
  • $\begingroup$ @Secespitus Thanks for clearing things up, I only found stack exchange a couple days ago so I was unsure about what kind of community it is. $\endgroup$ – Lutro Mar 20 '18 at 21:06
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    $\begingroup$ @Lutro No problem. If you have any questions feel free to ask them here on Meta or in the chat. By the way, as this is your first post on Meta: voting on Meta is a bit different from voting on Main. In this case the downvotes simply mean that others don't think this feature-request is necessary. It has nothing to do with the question quality or other criteria as on Main and the tooltips are wrong, too. On feature-requests votes mean "I agree/disagree", on discussion votes mean "This is a valuable discussion to have (even if I may disagree)", support means "shows research effort". $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Mar 20 '18 at 21:49
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    $\begingroup$ If there's a frozen room you want to have reopened, just ask. Unless it was intentionally frozen for some reason (rare, but it happens), mods will generally reopen. It would be better if we could mark rooms that should never be frozen or let other users unfreeze auto-frozen rooms, but those requests haven't gone anywhere since they were made. $\endgroup$ – Monica Cellio Mar 21 '18 at 0:15
  • $\begingroup$ @MonicaCellio Thanks. Yeah, it would be nice if there was an "unfreeze room" ability at some rep level. Though to be fair this is the only time I have ever had a need for it. $\endgroup$ – AndyD273 Mar 21 '18 at 13:36

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