The follow system does work if all you are interested in is the activity on the post itself.
I get the fact that there is the "like" button, users can bookmark the page to a specific browser and there is a search function. The fact is there are a ton of people requesting a specific feature...a feature that would make their experience on that forum more enjoyable. The more that user enjoys their time on my forum the easier it is for me to convince them to stick around longer...the longer they stick around the longer I can continue to make revenue off of them.
People like features...especially fun, user friendly, sharing, collecting and "liking" kind of features. It's just the way it is...
My members are requesting some kind of feature that lets them favorite their favorite recipes and posts...a collection if you will.
While you and I might prefer having a massive folder in our browser filled with tons of bookmarks most of my members do not.
Many of my members are not all that tech savvy and bookmarking (browser wise) in general (especially organizing them) is not their strong suite.
This isn't a weird feature request. There are a ton of people in the forums asking for this exact thing..we are asking because the members of our forums are asking us for it.
Even this hook which I don't think is active anymore has been downloaded over 1000 times:
The "Like" feature would only work if that's the only thing a user plans on liking on the board. I run a weight loss support forum and people love to encourage each other with "likes". At the same time they'd like the ability to have a favorite/bookmarked option for those special workouts and recipes.
While bookmarking them with a browser sounds all well and good most people in my demographic can barely navigate to the forum, let alone figure out how to do this browser wise.
It's obvious this hook would be a huge hit...make it happen :)
Think about the average user not the average tech inclined user and this option will make sense.
This is being heavily requested on my forum. We post all kinds of recipes and the users are asking for some way of adding them to a personal favourites list or bookmark list. Doing this browser wise sounds simple but you have to keep in mind many many users can barely remember (or know how) to bookmark the forum they are on.