RubberDials: The biggest problem with the forum is offering an optional list and flat view. List view means that some viewers never even read most of the posts in a thread.
The question and answer system deals with the biggest problem of this method - namely people answering the same question over and over, but with a flat view posters are at least exposed to everyone's posts, whether they read them in depth or only skim them.
I believe that viewing everyone's posts is a basic courtesy of participating in a community and the list view encourages cronyism with groups reading and responding only to each others' posts and shutting out newbies or anyone who offers a different view from the prevailing one.
I think list view contributes more than any other factor to the bellicosity and diminished sense of community that I see more than ever on this site and which discourages me from posting often.
Agreed. But the flat view needs to be brought up to standards other sites have had for the entirety of dpreview's existence: show threading as well.
People like GodSpeaks complain about flat view because it hides threading, but if it didn't it would be so much better than reloading the page for every single little post.