Best internet forums you know -- list them all for our collective benefit
January 12, 2010 3:50 PM   Subscribe

Best internet forums?

I've seen individual AskMeFi questions about individual topics like, "What's the best forum about yoga?" I was thinking a great post would be if everyone list all of the best forums they know. This should be done in the following format to make browsing this (hopefully large) list easy. For example:

Model Airplane building -
Traditional Men's fashion -

The more diverse the list, the better so add whatever you can think of if you know its a good/the best forum about a certain topic. If you think there are more than one good forums about a topic, please give an explanation for the difference between the two (i.e. this political forum leans more liberally while this other one leans more conservatively.)
posted by SouthCNorthNY to Computers & Internet (87 answers total) 234 users marked this as a favorite
I'm pretty sure this has been asked before because I remember contributing this:

Linguistics -
posted by ORthey at 3:59 PM on January 12, 2010

Yeah, here we go. Not exactly the same thing though.
posted by ORthey at 4:00 PM on January 12, 2010

The Gear Page - best site for discussion about musical instruments, tending toward the rock/band side of things (i.e. guitar, bass, keyboard, amplifiers, effects, recording, etc.)
posted by relucent at 4:07 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

Scuba Diving - Yorkshire Divers, DIR Explorers, The Deco Stop. Yorkshire Divers is more chatty than the other two, but all three will give good advice. The Deco Stop is more technical-oriented, and the DIR Explorers site is aimed at a specific style of scuba (DIR aka Doing It Right).
posted by jonesor at 4:20 PM on January 12, 2010

Poker - 2+2 Publishing forums.
posted by itsamonkeytree at 4:21 PM on January 12, 2010

For pre-press, professional offset printing, and the software/hardware used therein, b4print forums. Formerly the Pre-Press Forums
posted by Thorzdad at 4:31 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

Weight Loss Support -
posted by cecic at 4:33 PM on January 12, 2010

Swords: Sword Forum International. Discusses swords and swordmanship from around the world both ancient and modern.
posted by Mister Cheese at 4:37 PM on January 12, 2010

Scenic Art, Decorative Painting, Murals:
posted by alight at 4:39 PM on January 12, 2010

Pregnancy, breastfeeding, and infants:
posted by Asparagirl at 4:44 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

For uke enthusiasts - Ukulele Underground.
posted by chez shoes at 4:48 PM on January 12, 2010

Believe it or not, there are shaving forums, and this is my favorite: Badger & Blade
posted by kprincehouse at 4:54 PM on January 12, 2010

posted by dmd at 4:54 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

I don't know about that suggested format--this is the internet, shouldn't there be links?

Toyota Tacomas -
iRiver -
posted by box at 4:56 PM on January 12, 2010

I have many times recommended the Silent PC Review forums as the home of the net's most knowledgeable people on the subject of quiet computing (it's also perhaps the overall friendliest and most helpful technical forum I've seen.)

The CivFanatics Forums are always astonishing, whether people are developing modules that are essentially new games, analyzing points of strategy at absurd depth, relating Civ games and the thinking behind them at length, or engaging in lengthy discussion of whether you should move your settler north one square before building your city.
posted by Zed at 4:57 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

Homebrewing -
posted by box at 4:57 PM on January 12, 2010

Cellphones -
posted by box at 4:58 PM on January 12, 2010

Bicycling probably demands being broken down by disciplines and whatnot, but two big general-purpose forums:

Road bikes -
Mountain bikes -
posted by box at 5:00 PM on January 12, 2010

Headphones -
posted by box at 5:01 PM on January 12, 2010

I love lurking on random message boards, so I have quite a few forums to contribute.

[Cake decorating - - A fun place to hang out and chat about cake decorating. There are subforums for decorating techniques, business acumen, and cake disasters.]
[Crafting - Craftster - This board is a haven for crafty people of all sorts. You can join swaps, read tutes, and gush about the latest embroidery techniques.]
[Perfume - Basenotes - This forum is awesome for people entering the wide world of perfumery. See also BPAL Madness! for specific perfume geekery.]
[Soap - LUSH North America - People love delicious soap.]
[Food - There are so, so many great forums devoted to foodie!love. Two big ones are eGullet--there are way cool food writers here!--and Chowhound.]
[Mental heath - CrazyBoards - Not as frivalous as some of the other sites, CrazyBoards offers a support network for people with a wide spectrum of issues.]
[Cosplay and costuming - - This is where you go to wail about applique and to hang out with other cosplayers.]
[Manga - MangaHelpers - It started as a place for manga translators to talk biz; it's grown since then!]
[Birding - BirdForum - For twitchers and Joe Schmoe birdwatchers alike!]
[Writing - AbsoluteWrite - Absolutely a place where writers talk shop. There are places for market listings, plotting help, and rejection pep talks. When it's NaNoWriMo time, then the Forums are where it's at.]
[Mail art - - You can find lots of neat talk about mail art here.]

BONUS: The Barbelith forums are so, so pretty.

Whew! I may have a few more, but I, uh, have to go catch American Idol.

posted by ElectricBlue at 5:02 PM on January 12, 2010 [4 favorites]

Board Games -
posted by fings at 5:04 PM on January 12, 2010 [2 favorites]

Another one for bicycling: BikeForums, which Sheldon Brown was a member of.

Jazz: AllAboutJazz Jazz Forums

Recording: TapeOp Message Board
posted by invitapriore at 5:14 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Good call Box, links would be preferable to just listing the page name. Glad to see there is a wide variety of forums here.
posted by SouthCNorthNY at 5:17 PM on January 12, 2010

Purse Forum - More than you ever knew there was to know about purses.
posted by grapesaresour at 5:33 PM on January 12, 2010

Letterpress stuff -
posted by Alt F4 at 5:33 PM on January 12, 2010

Pro Sports Photography: - Real names, and only working photogs can post.

Conservative Investing: BogleHeads - For those who really like index mutual funds. Named after the founder of Vanguard.
posted by smackfu at 5:37 PM on January 12, 2010

General cycling:
Bike touring:
General translation: LANTRA
Japanese-English translation: Honyaku
Chinese-English translation: Fanyi

Some of these are mailing lists.
posted by adamrice at 5:44 PM on January 12, 2010

Psychedelic mushrooms - Shroomery
posted by box at 5:49 PM on January 12, 2010 [2 favorites]

Mental Health - Crazyboards
Mental Health medication - Crazy Talk
posted by patheral at 5:55 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

Coffee - Coffee Geek
Cinematography -
posted by sdsparks at 6:02 PM on January 12, 2010

Makeup Alley
posted by jgirl at 6:03 PM on January 12, 2010 [2 favorites]

Motorcycles and tons of other stuff you never thought you'd find on a motorcycle site -
posted by torquemaniac at 6:07 PM on January 12, 2010

Knitting: Ravelry
posted by cleverevans at 6:10 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

Should put all this into the MeFi/AskMe wiki... be a great community resource.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:51 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

webcomics: Truth and Beauty Bombs
posted by rebent at 6:53 PM on January 12, 2010

Flashlights - Candlepower Forums
Remote Controls - Remote Central
posted by neurodoc at 7:06 PM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

posted by lunasol at 7:06 PM on January 12, 2010

American Idol's over... Here are some additional forums I nabbed from my bookmarks during commercial breaks. ;)

[Improv - Improv Resource Center forums - - This forum provides great tips for performing improv.]
[Language learning - How to Learn Any Language - - Amazing, helpful, supportive forums for any language lover!]
[Song lyrics - Lyrics forum - - One of the subforums, the Lyrics Translation forum, is particularly awesome.]
[TV - Television Without Pity forums - - Gab about TV shows.]
[Piano - Piano World - - Wonderful group of pianists and piano lovers alike.]
[Deals - Fat Wallet - - The Hot Deals subforum is where it's at for people wanting to save money.]
[Art - WetCanvas - A forum for fine artists of all stripes.]
[Manly fashion (and hats!) - The Fedora Lounge - - A place for manly, film noir fashion. Check out the Hats subforum.]
[Clowning - Clown Forum - - Just what it says on the tin.]
[Modeling - Model Mayhem - - This forum gives an insider's look of the modeling industry.]
[Beards - Beard Board - - A beard forum. Hee hee hee!]
[Video game remixes - OverClocked ReMix forums - - This forum is full of tips and tricks for remixing video game music--not to mention talk of video games themselves.]
[Chickens - poultryOne - - Raising chickens, harvesting eggs: talk about it here.]
[Translators - ProZ - - A forum for translators.]
[Curly hair - CurlTalk - - Curly-haired people, unite!]
[Twitter fiction - twitfic - - The forums are small but sweet, much like Twitfic itself.]
[Astronomy - Astronomy forums - - A place for stargazers to talk about the galaxy--and beyond.]
[Astrology - Astrologer's Community - - And a place for stargazers to talk about the way the galaxy is affecting the mundane.]
[(Mostly ballroom) dance - Dance Forums - - A place for dancers to stretch their legs.]

Lastly, you can find some fun forums on the Wikipedia list of Internet forums as well.

Happy lurking! :)
posted by ElectricBlue at 7:12 PM on January 12, 2010 [3 favorites]

Banjo Hangout!
posted by bondcliff at 7:26 PM on January 12, 2010

University composition teachers/scholars and writing program administrators:
posted by 5Q7 at 7:40 PM on January 12, 2010

Music-Loving - I Love Music
posted by box at 7:44 PM on January 12, 2010

MetaFilter, of course. For everything.
posted by armage at 7:57 PM on January 12, 2010

Recipes - mostly healthy, with a variety of cuisines covered. Good recipe and ingredient discussions with people who cook a lot!

Cooking Light Forum -
posted by ourroute at 7:59 PM on January 12, 2010

Volkswagen: VW Vortex Forums - Best enthusiast forum for all things Volkswagen/Audi.
Misc: Something Awful - One of the best all-purpose forums on the web. Paid membership, but well worth the $5.
posted by insect at 8:02 PM on January 12, 2010

Copy editing Testy Copy Editors - Is newspaper copy editing too narrow? Maybe? Sorry. Sticklers for the finer points of language, though the number of members employed by actual newspapers has decline in recent years.
posted by nbergus at 8:21 PM on January 12, 2010

Cover songs:
posted by knile at 8:36 PM on January 12, 2010

Mental health/psychology: Uncommon Knowledge Forum
posted by datarose at 8:52 PM on January 12, 2010

Application Deployment, packaging, Installshield, Wise etc:

Citrix forums: and Brian Madden Forums
posted by Admira at 9:37 PM on January 12, 2010

Gonna list a couple repeats, but here are a few I think are worth looking at:
iPhone Games: Touch Arcade
Frequent flying strategies: FlyerTalk
Bargains/sales: Fatwallet
Casual fitness/nutrition: John Stone Fitness
Cell phones/providers: Howard Forums

Also, whenever I'm done watching a movie I usually go to IMDB to read a movie's message board and see what other people are saying about it. For bad movies, this is sometimes more entertaining than watching the movie itself.
posted by some idealist at 10:07 PM on January 12, 2010

posted by 2xplor at 10:28 PM on January 12, 2010

Digital Audio Encoding and Whatnot: HydrogenAudio

Home Theater and A/V: AVS Forum
posted by Good Brain at 11:51 PM on January 12, 2010

(Specifically) British Motorcycles Brit-Iron. It's a list-serv.
posted by From Bklyn at 11:56 PM on January 12, 2010

British Urban Exploration - 28 Days Later
posted by numberstation at 1:14 AM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Retro video games - Digital Press
Atari - AtariAge
eBooks - MobileRead
posted by aceyprime at 5:19 AM on January 13, 2010

Box: Shroomery

Also, more generally, Bluelight

Zed: The CivFanatics Forums are always astonishing

For Football Manager, the SI Games forums are great.
posted by Infinite Jest at 5:19 AM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Parenting children with serious behavioral problems / mental health issues: (despite the name, it's not just for parents of kids with CD).
posted by drlith at 5:25 AM on January 13, 2010

Wow - excellent topic!

Web Hosting:
Web Design:

posted by JensR at 6:29 AM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

For technical aspects of theatre, The Blue Room, ControlBooth and SMNetwork (the latter focused more on stage management issues).
posted by James Scott-Brown at 6:53 AM on January 13, 2010

Rationality: Less Wrong.
Church of the SubGenius: alt.slack
posted by eccnineten at 7:03 AM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

And how can I have forgotten: PerlMonks for all things Perl. Larry Wall and seemingly most of the people who have written books about Perl participate.
posted by Zed at 7:26 AM on January 13, 2010

Nissan Maxima enthusiasts: and their forums.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:30 AM on January 13, 2010

Lately, I've gotten a lot of tech support from these two:

Superuser: the ultimate meritocratic generic tech help resource.
Tom's Hardware forums: awesome information on hardware, though I prefer AnandTech for reviews.
posted by Lifeson at 7:40 AM on January 13, 2010

All things gardening: the Gardenweb forums. Man, these people know their stuff.

Related: the Home forums , with everything you ever wanted to know about home repair/remodeling/decorating etc.
posted by yawper at 8:16 AM on January 13, 2010

Model Warship Combat
Build scale WWII ships, sail them on ponds and attempt to sink each other by shooting bbs.
posted by krieghund at 9:14 AM on January 13, 2010

All things tailoring-related: Cutter&Tailor
posted by dpcoffin at 9:58 AM on January 13, 2010

Elitist Jerks is a World of Warcraft forum for end-game players/theorycrafters who know (or want to know) what the term spell power coefficient refers to, among other arcane things.
posted by The Lurkers Support Me in Email at 12:04 PM on January 13, 2010

Glow worms
Bumblebees [bombus-l]
posted by pracowity at 12:04 PM on January 13, 2010

For videogames, Neogaf. (New Gaming Age Forums) It's generally agreed that most of the developers in the business use this as their primary "watercooler", though a lot of the denizens are "hard core" gamers, so some of the talk is rather cynical, and sometimes brutal. Nevertheless, a great place to first hear rumours and to be made aware of the latest in videogames. If you are looking for a blog that does the same thing, Kotaku is fantastic, and is updated very frequently.
posted by Sully at 12:17 PM on January 13, 2010

One of my weekly reads is Metamodern, which is a blog about nanotechnology spiced with a fair amount of futurism.

I also like Blue Collar Bioinformatics, which is a really nerdy blog about the nuts and bolts of bioinformatics programming.
posted by overhauser at 12:48 PM on January 13, 2010 [2 favorites]

Startups/technology - Hacker News
posted by lsemel at 1:51 PM on January 13, 2010

Nth'ing howard-forums.

Dumpster diving -
Standardized Tests (GRE and GMAT mostly) -
Apple/Mac forums [rumors and tech support] -
ISPs [from a consumer prospective] -
posted by fizzix at 2:07 PM on January 13, 2010 forums for the at-home exercise enthusiast.
posted by the littlest brussels sprout at 2:25 PM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Motorcycle tech, enthusiasts, events and classifieds at Jockey Journal -

More motorcycles (mostly American, Japanese and British custom cruisers) and other BS at ChopCult -

Custom home-built dragsters, hot rods, rat rods, etc. at the H.A.M.B. from Jalopy Journal -

General garage tech at Garage Journal -

Astronomy and other science stuff at the Bad Astronomy and Universe Today forums -
posted by Demogorgon at 3:04 PM on January 13, 2010

Digital Cameras:
posted by emeiji at 3:06 PM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Tin whistles, Irish flutes, and related instruments and music: Chiff and Fipple*, The Session

Zen Buddhism: Treeleaf Zendo, Zen Forum International

Men's fashion, especially streetwear: StyleForum, superfuture, HypeBeast

* (With which I was once affiliated, but not anymore.)
posted by mendel at 7:42 PM on January 13, 2010
posted by dixie flatline at 9:08 PM on January 13, 2010

For Volkswagen TDIs: TDI Club.
posted by chazlarson at 5:54 AM on January 14, 2010

travelers of the underground, hobos, migrant punks, and other alternative advenurers of the world - Squat the Planet
posted by symbollocks at 7:53 AM on January 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

General whitewater kayaking, focused somewhat on the Appalachians and the east half of the country: Boatertalk.

For whitewater kayaking in the mountain west: Mountainbuzz.

Seconding homebrewtalk for the homebrewers.
posted by craven_morhead at 9:27 AM on January 14, 2010

Chinese History - China History Forum
posted by Carius at 6:49 PM on January 14, 2010

Wristwatches - timezone
Architecture (both the professional and academic sides) - archinect
posted by inqb8tr at 12:34 PM on January 15, 2010

Home Cinema (Especially TVs) - AVForums
The BBC Microcomputer - Stairway to Hell
posted by Mwongozi at 4:51 PM on January 16, 2010 Minolta/Sony based board. "The Metafilter of Sony camera forums"
posted by lattiboy at 7:31 PM on January 18, 2010

Riding a motorcycle in the depths of winter or a summer trip across the desert? Rounders.

Riding a motorcycle on road, off road, dirt roads, across a mountain, and two hundred miles home again? Adventure Rider.

Both have been pretty invaluable for random advice.

Seconding stackoverflow for programming,

Does Slashdot fit here?
posted by talldean at 8:01 PM on January 19, 2010

Disney -
Training -
Crossfit -
posted by revan at 11:55 AM on January 25, 2010

Nthing CandlePowerForums, and also Watch-u-Seek for watches
posted by felspar at 10:42 PM on January 26, 2010

For information design, Ask E.T. Moderated (heavily) by Edward Tufte himself. Low volume, but very high signal-to-noise ratio.
posted by James Scott-Brown at 12:06 PM on February 4, 2010

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