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Thoughts on the new forum website

Eddy Yates

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I like the forum, so I'll stick with it, but for me, the old site had charm, was easy to use, and didn't pander to other social media buzz. For example, it's nice to be able to "like" a post, but listing how many responses a member gets is really annoying, and I think, can lead to people just writing stuff to get a rise.
Also, the idea of having a "featured" thread is completely unnecessary. The old forum seemed timeless.
The bumps in learning a slightly different way of navigating are inevitable, so I discount my slight annoyance with that.
There are a lot of forums that look exactly like this one. I do appreciate the people who have given so much time to run this, and if it makes it easier for you, great. If you have any control over those features I mentioned, maybe take a poll and keep or jettison? Thanks.
 

Dingo40

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You make some very good points, Eddy.
In particular, I do agree with you in that the changes have made it look very much more " trendy modern ", and less "charming ".
Also, I miss the old "Welcome guest" ( or Dingo40) upon coming online or logging on.
But, I do like the new capacity of being able to post an iPhone image (or an avatar) directly from my phone, as well as being able to select and use an emoji from my own keyboard: do be sure to retain these options, please!:)(y)
On the whole, though, I'm sure I could learn to live with it eventually !:D
 
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embers

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I only know the current forum, @Eddy Yates , and even still learning it (aka stumbling around). However, I do remember when I was working, whenever the IT folk would upgrade or make improvements to software which I thought served well, it was the never-ending challenge of getting used to it. Since change is consistently constant, I expect I'll get to see some yet to come here.
 

losthobos

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I like the ability to post links that show as windows rather than a list if words... Otherwise its hit the rewind button for me too...
Admire your passion to improve though... Whatever you do your efforts are appreciated...
 

debra

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I generally don't like change (maybe a sign of autism?) but nowadays with IT it is unavoidable. The new forum works quite well. I'm not a fan of things like a "Like" button, and also don't need reminders that someone likes a post...
The most important thing is that everything works and that the forum has advantages for our volunteering administrator Knobby! We are forever in his debt for giving us this wonderful discussion platform.
 

Glenn

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Sometimes it is inevitable that software changes due to cost of maintenance. Some platforms become unsupported or indeed vulnerable to hacking without updates and changes. These are the times we live in. “Rough with the smooth“ comes to mind. In our case I think the migration has been a great success with a fistful of additional options and improvements and from my perspective a more solid platform. Like others I am not too enamoured with the “like” function as it is not really our demographics “thing”. As to logging on, I don’t have to as my iPad and most browsers retain the login credentials.
Big thanks to Knobby for all his hard work. “Where to I put my 👍”?
 

knobby

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it's nice to be able to "like" a post, but listing how many responses a member gets is really annoying, and I think, can lead to people just writing stuff to get a rise.
This is a common feature on forums and is similar to the "Thank You" feature that was added to the previous incarnation of the forum (a feature which appeared to be quite widely liked). I admit that I don't like the table showing the highest reaction scores in the member area so will be turning this off today (now that I have found out how to do it).
I don't think that people will just write stuff to get a "like"; if it is rubbish then no one will "like" it anyway.
But... did you realise that it is a reaction, not just a like? Hover over the "Like" for a second and you will see the following: (EDIT: I've now changed the title to "React to post" to better describe what this option does.)
Screen Shot 2020-08-14 at 11.50.42.png
You can then choose the reaction you wish to convey, not just "like". I agree it is Social Media-ish, but these are the times we live in. I think this can be useful where you wish to comment in some way to a post but don't feel that a full-on reply is necessary or warranted. I've been doing some research on a few areas of the current forum software so may change some of these reactions in the near future. Also please remember that you don't have to use them; they are there for those that wish to.

Also, the idea of having a "featured" thread is completely unnecessary.
This is something I added a couple of days ago, and so far I personally have found it extremely useful. It pops up a random thread every so often (I'm still tweaking the times) from various forums. It has shown me a number of threads that I hadn't seen/noticed before, or hadn't looked at due to the title of the thread, but which I was actually interested in reading. I also think it may be of use to newer members of the forum as they may not wish to trawl back through every post from the last x months.

There are a lot of forums that look exactly like this one.
There probably are, but then there are even more which look like the previous versions as both phpBB and MyBB are much more popular bases for forums like this as the software is free of charge.

the old site had charm
the changes have made it look very much more " trendy modern ", and less "charming ".
I don't quite know what you mean by "charm" here; do you mean old fashioned looking? Yes, the current software does look more modern, but then the MyBB version looked more modern than the original phpBB version. I do still find phpBB very old fashioned looking.
There are various themes, etc. that could be applied to the current forum to change its look, but to be honest I think the forum looks good as it is. Maybe the new, "modern" look will change peoples perception of accordionists!

and also don't need reminders that someone likes a post...
Click on your name at the top of the forum, select "Preferences" then under "Recieve a notification when someone..." uncheck the boxes from the ones you don't wish to be notified about.

if it makes it easier for you, great.
Oh, it does! It has been a huge learning curve for me as the back end administration is completely different to what has gone before, but the software is a massive improvement over the software used in the past. Not just in the things that can be done with it, i.e. its features, but in the level of support afforded to me as the administrator. The software used in the past has been "open source" and as such is supported mainly by the community of other users. Sometimes this could be slow or even non-existent; I'm still waiting for an answer to a question I posted on the MyBB forum over 4 months ago.
The current forum is commercial software and comes with official company support, along with community support too. So far the longest I've waited for an answer to a question has been around 10 minutes. I have also purchased add-ons for the software to extend its features (both front and back end), and a few times the developer has logged in to the forum and sorted the issues for me, as well as offering advice on other aspects of managing this forum software. For me, help like this is invaluable!
I know lots of people dislike change, but this change really is for the better. Please persevere with it and I'm sure you will get used to it in no time. If you get stuck, just ask (y)
 
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bocsa

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New version suits me, the change has been accommodated, can't remember what the old one looked like 😎

No-one really likes change but it's inevitable, grow with it 🙂
 

jozz

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I like the new version mainly, because it is more mobile-friendly
 

Corinto

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As Paul says, I usually don't like change. Maybe something related with aging? Still remember when WhatsApp didn't work anymore with my iPhone4. As a matter of fact I really don't need WhatsApp, but to stay connected with children and grandchildren, and other family and friends to a lesser degree, it's almost a must now. Then my daughter upgraded to whatever number iPhone and I inherited her iPhone5, and yes she did all the transition for me, however I will need to upgrade sometimes again because the memory is too limited and now today with lots of pictures and movies coming in, I need to clean it up every 2 or 3months ... but I have my son or my daughter at hand for the needed transition. Hopefully this will be good for years again.

New software is OK for me, as I already can use what I need. There may be lots of stuff I'll not use, but that's OK also! Great job Knobby!

Edit: saw Chris' post after posting. Seems we agree, (y).
 
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donn

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You can then choose the reaction you wish to convey, not just "like". I agree it is Social Media-ish, but these are the times we live in. I think this can be useful where you wish to comment in some way to a post but don't feel that a full-on reply is necessary or warranted.

Yes! I don't think I've noticed it here so much, but a good replacement for "+1" posts is good news. One platform I use with this exact feature, includes a literal "+1" hieroglyph.

If a feature is "social media-ish" just because those platforms have come up with useful features, I guess that's OK. There seem to be some aspects of social media that are more pernicious. One thing I'm glad not to see here, not so much on grounds of perniciousness but just because it's a nuisance, is threaded ordering, where conversation develops little internal branches every time someone replies directly to something other than the most recent post. Sounds like a cool idea, makes a mess.
 
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Eddy Yates

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Good discussion, change, and explanation, which is exactly what we need. Much appreciated, Knobby et al!
(One difference of opinion: Facebook works exactly on the principle of “reaction” and that is why I quit a few years ago. May we keep level-headed.)
 

JeffJetton

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I don't like any of the changes and demand a full refund of all that I've paid to use this site! :p

Seriously, I'm thankful that this forum exists, for free, in any form and deeply appreciate the work that Knobby does to keep it going. You'll get no complaints from me! (y)
 

Tom

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I'm fine with the new version. As a former forum owner/administrator myself, all I can do is repeat the giant thanks to Knobby for persevering with this forum, whichever software he finds most appropriate. I can say from experience it's a lot of work and we are so fortunate he's around.
 

dunlustin

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I have no idea what a 'Reaction Score' is for; but good luck to those who find them useful.
I really like the new layout.
I see the new provider is commercial and so I'm guessing the forum costs more to run.
Just saying: Although this wonderful resource can be free - that's not compulsory!
 
D

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As someone who was told by teachers in school to lead a happy life is living head down, in secret ... the internet age is quite the opposite.
I have mixed feelings about social media and internetfora. As said, people will do anything to score "likes".
The internet technology is fascinating, but "social media scores" or "social credit scores" ... it's too much "big brother" and "big tech" for me.

I thought the days of school reports and scores were behind me... These days every adult person or worker is treated like a schoolboy by the big data industry. We are constantly being assessed and graded online...

Big data and data mining , metadata analytics ... raising big questions about data ownership.

If we are feeding commercial forums with posts and information. Are we simply members or increasingly becoming digital workers or employees in the digital world? We are feeding big data companies by texting information.

More Big Tech congressional hearings and investigations are needed in these complexe matters. It's a very difficult balance between advantages of technology and the dangers of too much concentration of data and knowledge in the hands of very few people.
 

Eddy Yates

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Thanks for that. Well put.
I will go to my profile and see if I can opt out of having my “score” reported. I do appreciate just being able to post a “thank you” when that’s all I have to say, although I’m perfectly capable of writing it.
Hmmmmm....just went to my preferences and don’t see where I can opt out of having my reactions tallied.
Come Mister Tally-man, tally me reactions....
 
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knobby

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@Stephen I think you may have misunderstood what I meant by “commercial software”. By commercial I mean that the software has to be purchased from a company rather than being free of charge. No company has access to your data from this forum.

Hmmmmm....just went to my preferences and don’t see where I can opt out of having my reactions tallied.
It isn’t possible to opt out.
 

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