Sorry to be the opposing voice again.. In my experience, chats are detrimental to information forums overall, especially ones where people are really passionate about what they're there for.
My concerns would be:
1. The previously mentioned crapstorms. People are already snarking in threads over tank size, being rude to responders if they don't like the answer, lalala. Imagine a chat full of that.
2. People in a panic using the chat rather than the forum for help all the time, and the chat becoming very clogged/ people getting frustrated at each other.
The several forums I've run only hosted chats once in a while, as a special feature, and that worked pretty well - we had guest talkers in, experts in their field and people could ask questions, etc, was awesome. Or just casual chat - once a month. I found that the best arrangement, overall.
Several other forums (not fish related) I'm formerly a member of developed 'chat cliques' which have been the downfall of the forum itself, and a recipe for ten kinds of nastiness. People left in droves due to butthurt and bad vibes in the end, and while I am a pretty tolerant person I was one of them, it got so bad. I'd hate to see that happen here as this forum functions better than many.
If it ain't broke.. etc.
Last edited by Aus; 07-15-2012 at 11:20 PM.