These actually are all really good. I nominate Dookie to do them!There are several recurring themes here, some of which point to limitations when using vBulletin as a message board and as a content management system.
Among the possible solutions, which don't involve costly add-ons to the message board software (some of this has already been suggested, trying to summarize here)
- many useful threads are buried under tons of other redundant threads
- useful information in a definitive thread is spread out through 150 replies
- the search function has no way of ranking popular results
- definitive articles are old and have dead picture links
- new users can't find what they're looking for, ask the question again
- senior users already know most of what they're interested to know, get sick of redundant newbie questions
- it's always more fun to dogpile on the n00b, than it is to track down the right answer/URL for them. Regardless, the message board shouldn't put that burden on the veteran user anyway.
- the experts nominate the best threads, and consolidate the information in the initial post or paraphrase into a new threads, more like technical articles.
- the admins implement some kind of sidebar on the forum pages with links to popular articles per forum.
- the initial email a user receives after joining gets revised into a decent html page, telling newbies where to look for information. I think people who find what they're looking for are generally going to abide by the CoC anyway.
- split the "how much you will spend" article to accommodate zero-budget Fetts, weekend troopers, and screen-accurate prop replica fanatics. Contrary to popular belief, it is entirely possible for some TDH members to create a costume they are satisfied with, for less than $3,500.
- maybe we have a separate forum just for introductions. A single intro thread is unmanageable as the TDH membership continues to increase. Possibly limit users' ability to post anywhere else until they've posted in the intro forum.