Facebook built a forum platform for your smartphone inside the new Rooms app
In the 1990s and early 2000s I was the member of a couple car forums. First Honda forums and then a Subaru forum. I used these forums mostly for technical information. Where to buy used engines and transmission, the best gas for turbo-charged vehicles, how to remove the airbag on a Del Sol without it exploding in my face.
Then Facebook appeared and I stopped visiting forums unless I absolutely needed to get some very specific information about a fuse or cable. Now Facebook, more specifically Josh Miller, the co-founder of Branch which was acquired by Facebook in January 2014, is launching Rooms, an iOS appthat recreates the niche world of forums. Room members can drop text, images and videos.
Unlike other Facebook products, Rooms doesn’t tie into the social network. It’s a completely separate entity. In fact you can create a completely new screen name for each room. Maybe for a surfing room you want a screen name that denotes your love of the sea and in a car forum you can give yourself a Honda-themed moniker.
You can create a room about anything. It’s a bit like a sub-reddit without having to use Reddit. You want a room to talk with like-minded individuals about the awesome cartoon Animaniacs? Go for it. Room creators control almost all aspects of a room. You can make it adult only by blocking those under 18. Make sure the conversation is headed in the correct direction by electing to green-light every comment.