This recent conversation, about finding people with shared interests, reminded me of another aspect of community-building that can be challenging here: following conversations.
Currently, even if you follow most or all of the other participants, a conversation can carry on without you if you aren’t being actively tagged.
About a year ago, I pitched the idea of a new “Conversations” tab that would allow you to manually bookmark whole conversations while also automatically showing any conversation you had been tagged in.
The “Conversations” tab, as I was imagining it, would give you the chance to add conversations you want to monitor, and remove (or mute) conversations you were no longer interested in, even if you had been an active participant (@-mentions would still appear in the “mentions” tab; this would pertain only to conversations). It would therefore be a hybrid of “Mentions” (populated automatically) and “Favorites” (populated manually).
I don’t know what the content of “Conversations” would actually look like. Tabs within the Tab? The thing could be a terrible mess, of course. Thankfully I don’t have to design it — I can just sit back with my feet on my desk, wave my hands around vaguely, and insist I’m just an “ideas man.”