Growing the Forum

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Jason Hare
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Growing the Forum

Postby Jason Hare » Fri Sep 06, 2019 5:28 am

If you guys are as hopeful as I am that B-Hebrew will come back to life and become a wellspring of information about Hebrew language studies and a place where we encourage people to delve into the language that we all have come to love, I would ask that we brainstorm about ways to bring new lifeblood into the forum community.

1. What challenges do you think the forum faces that prevent us from appealing to a larger audience? What possible solutions might you suggest for dealing with those challenges and making relevant changes that will help us overcome to the hurdles in front of us?

2. Could we start a חבר מביא חבר sort of thing? I don't know what we might give to those who bring others to join, but perhaps some PDF worksheet or something created by our members. Can you think of some צ׳ופר that we might be able to give those who bring friends to the forum?

3. Might it to be good to put together a Facebook springboard page that would ask questions and lead people to click onto the forum? Do we have any social media gurus out there who would help market the forum to the rest of the world?

Let's get this started... please!
Jason Hare
Tel Aviv, Israel

Kenneth Greifer
Posts: 276
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2015 3:05 pm

Re: Growing the Forum

Postby Kenneth Greifer » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:32 pm

Jason,

I am not a social media expert at all, but I think it would make sense to have a video on Youtube that advertises this forum with keywords like Hebrew Bible and Biblical Hebrew or Ancient Hebrew. Maybe people will stumble on the video and come here. Sometimes, I look up "Hebrew Bible" on Youtube for fun. I don't know if anyone else ever looks that up there.

Schubert
Posts: 68
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:05 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Growing the Forum

Postby Schubert » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:37 pm

I have a couple of thoughts.

First, would it be worth marketing the forum in some fashion with students taking first year Biblical Hebrew courses at seminaries or elsewhere? That would require the cooperation of course instructors and/or the institution.

I’m hesitant about making my second comment but I feel it needs to be said. The forum needs to be a welcoming place once a potential new member finds his or her way to the forum and has a look around. For the forum to be a welcoming place, it is necessary that participants always be respectful and avoid ad hominem attacks.
John McKinnon

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Jason Hare
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Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2013 5:07 am
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
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Re: Growing the Forum

Postby Jason Hare » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:28 pm

Kenneth Greifer wrote:I am not a social media expert at all, but I think it would make sense to have a video on Youtube that advertises this forum with keywords like Hebrew Bible and Biblical Hebrew or Ancient Hebrew. Maybe people will stumble on the video and come here. Sometimes, I look up "Hebrew Bible" on Youtube for fun. I don't know if anyone else ever looks that up there.

Does anyone know how to make YouTube videos? I don't have any video production experience at all.

Schubert wrote:First, would it be worth marketing the forum in some fashion with students taking first year Biblical Hebrew courses at seminaries or elsewhere? That would require the cooperation of course instructors and/or the institution.

I actually joined B-Hebrew (and B-Greek) when I was 18 years old in Bible college! I think it would be a great idea, but we would have to make sure that someone could ask simple questions without being overrun with comments from fringe theories. For example, a student might show up and ask in what situations the dagesh is used. It would not be beneficial to tell them that dagesh has no meaning or predictable use and that it's just a remnant of some old way of pronouncing the language that we don't need to have any more. There are real answers that can be provided, and those who would answer questions for beginners need to be able to communicate to beginners on a beginner's level... and make them feel validated for starting their journey into Hebrew and encouraged to keep at it.

I think that one way we could get around this is to require that anyone who answers a question from someone who is just learning Hebrew would be required to provide links or citations that refer back to Gesenius, Weingreen, Seow, Kutz & Josberger, Waltke & O'Connor, etc. Rather than throwing out a pet theory, they would be required to refer the student to a relevant section of an academically viable grammar or study textbook. If someone offers answers that contradict the standard texts, they would need to support it with quotes from within peer-reviewed literature.

Do you think this could/should be a basic requirement (in addition to regular quotation of biblical verses that demonstrate the principle in question) for answering beginners?

Anything else that would limit the tendency of this forum to spin into chaos when answering the simplest and most innocent of questions?

Schubert wrote:I’m hesitant about making my second comment but I feel it needs to be said. The forum needs to be a welcoming place once a potential new member finds his or her way to the forum and has a look around. For the forum to be a welcoming place, it is necessary that participants always be respectful and avoid ad hominem attacks.

Obviously... that goes without saying, except that it just goes without being said even when it should be pointed out. ;)

Thanks, you guys!

Jason
Jason Hare
Tel Aviv, Israel

Kenneth Greifer
Posts: 276
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2015 3:05 pm

Re: Growing the Forum

Postby Kenneth Greifer » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:46 pm

Jason,

You brought up a good point about college students just starting to learn Hebrew who will be told fringe beliefs about Biblical Hebrew as mainstream beliefs. There is nothing you can do about that, except warn people that they will eventually have to face fringe beliefs about Biblical Hebrew and the Hebrew Bible. I don't think B-Hebrew is a good place for college students in that situation, and I wouldn't recommend confusing them while they are in school trying to succeed at something important to them.

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Jason Hare
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Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
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Re: Growing the Forum

Postby Jason Hare » Mon Sep 09, 2019 8:19 pm

I would suggest that we create a phpBB code specifically for creating citations.

For example, we might write the following new phpBB code:

Code: Select all

[citation={URL}]{TEXT}[/citation]

I would suggest a replacement like:

Code: Select all

<a href='{URL}' style='color: red; text-decoration: none;' target='_blank'>{TEXT}&nbsp;&#128209;</a>

Then, it would be used in a post like this:

Code: Select all

[citation=https://archive.org/details/geseniushebrewg00roedgoog/page/n108]Gesenius §47[/citation] talks about the imperfect and its inflection.

This would output something like this:

citation_example.jpg
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Jason Hare
Tel Aviv, Israel

Schubert
Posts: 68
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:05 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Growing the Forum

Postby Schubert » Mon Sep 09, 2019 8:50 pm

I'll pick up on one of Jason's comments:

I think that one way we could get around this is to require that anyone who answers a question from someone who is just learning Hebrew would be required to provide links or citations that refer back to Gesenius, Weingreen, Seow, Kutz & Josberger, Waltke & O'Connor, etc. Rather than throwing out a pet theory, they would be required to refer the student to a relevant section of an academically viable grammar or study textbook. If someone offers answers that contradict the standard texts, they would need to support it with quotes from within peer-reviewed literature.


We have a Beginner's Forum. If we were able to have beginners use the Beginner's Forum, perhaps it would be possible to have special forum rules for anyone responding to a question??
John McKinnon


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