One of the strengths of the AFS Annual Meeting is the creativity of session organizers, who sometimes find ways to present rich material in ways that don't line up neatly with the format of a paper panel.
In such cases, those session chairs may wonder how to submit hybrid sessions. AFS welcomes those sessions, even though our proposal forms are necessarily designed for the most commonly used formats.
The most important distinction between paper sessions and forums, from our perspective, is whether or not there are formal presentations. Forums are meant to be almost exclusively discussion, with only very brief introductory remarks from each participant to orient the discussion. If session participants require more than five minutes each to start the conversation, then the session should not be represented as a forum. Because session participants don't make formal presentations, there are no corresponding individual abstracts for their contributions to the session.
If session participants do make formal presentations of five minutes or more, then they should submit individual 100-word abstracts for their parts in the session, which the chair will turn in using the paper session proposal form. If there is something unusual about the session, that can be conveyed in the session abstracts and/or the comments field.
If the proposed session has more than four presenters, contact AmericanFolkloreSociety@gmail.com for help. Bear in mind that every session should allow a minimum of 30 minutes for questions and discussion.