New forum - issues and complaints

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Megamixer
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by Megamixer » Tue Apr 15, 2014 1:30 pm

NickThorpe wrote:Right now, to help inform the direction we take I need you guys to answer one question: considering the alternative methods of communication available (email, social networking websites, etc.) would the loss of private messaging significantly impact your experience of using the forum?
Maybe. I know there are quite a few people on here (myself included) who don't care about or don't use social media. Also, I can't see sales/trades being possible because to even begin communicating you'd need to post your email address out in the open which I for one wouldn't do.

I think I'd still post but I'd certainly miss the private chats that spin-off from discussions on the main forum, amazing deals on trades/sales that some of the users here are prepared to do etc. etc.

I guess this means that the Wordpress route is the only way to go and that a phpbb upgrade is definitely out of the question? :(

I'm very grateful for the communication in this thread and the knowledge that issues are being addressed but I think a loss of PM's would certainly impact on the community here which is quite close-knit and friendly. I've never had chats via PM's or any of that on other forums for example.
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by GigaPepsiMan » Tue Apr 15, 2014 1:57 pm

I would be very upset if we lose messaging, I use that function all the time and I'd be a lot worse off if it didn't exist.

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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by Hitman_HalStep » Tue Apr 15, 2014 2:28 pm

i also don't use social media and have no intention to start and i'm not putting the e-mail address on the forum so it would be a major loss to me if PM's went.
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by flatapex » Tue Apr 15, 2014 2:34 pm

NickThorpe wrote:Haha, this is the first new forum I've gained 50 posts on in some time! Many thanks to you all for your continued help, too - I am but the middle man here.

Okay, we've got a response from the web techs and the news is mostly good. The majority of the technical issues that have been raised apparently can and will be addressed. I'd like to mention two of the more significant issues directly. The new look, which I know many of you weren't keen on (to say the least), will definitely be changing. Old replies were always intended to be retained, but it appears that a problem occurred during the importation process - this will be fixed going forward.

There are, however two things that will pose problems - the former perhaps minor, but the latter is rather major:

- Thread subscriptions apparently can't be carried over. There's a similar feature in the new software, so you'd just need to resubscribe to your favourite threads.

- Private message functionality may not be possible to carry over.

I'd like to stress that with the number of changes that need to be made, we won't be seeing the new software for some time. What's more, after Friday's problems, we'll be giving more warning before making any changes - in the event that neither problem can be solved, you should have ample time to take backups, conclude trading deals and do whatever else needs to be done.

Right now, to help inform the direction we take I need you guys to answer one question: considering the alternative methods of communication available (email, social networking websites, etc.) would the loss of private messaging significantly impact your experience of using the forum?
to be honest? yes

i use facebook and have no problems with rg guys adding me, some might not be so happy with such things

no pms means no secret santa, trades would be vastly reduced and probably die out, imagine it ''i have *games* for sale email me on *Name*@ *emailprovider.com"

really? spamtastic :shock:

i moderate on a non gaming forum, if someone posts their email address we remove it for their security and if they keep readding it we treat them as a spammer.

i would expect your tech guys to be a bit more email security savvy to be honest Nick
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by Antiriad2097 » Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:05 pm

NickThorpe wrote:considering the alternative methods of communication available (email, social networking websites, etc.) would the loss of private messaging significantly impact your experience of using the forum?
Yes, very much so. Its all very well saying we have alternate methods of comms, but we could say that of the forum itself - there are plenty of other retro gaming forums around. Should we just abandon this place for somewhere that has the standard facilities of forums for the last decade?

There is a serious issue with taking this line of 'use other methods'. There aren't any other methods. At least not for a significant number of people I PM. I have an email address and I have a facebook account, but I'm not connected to most of the people here by those routes. There's a few people whose real names I know, but mostly I only know them here or by usernames, so facebook becomes unusable. The same goes, but to an even greater extent, for email. I have addresses for barely a couple of users here.

Throw in that many times, it will be relatively new users I message for discrete advice on forum etiquette (as most moderators do), and there's no way I'd have alternate contact routes for those people.

Loss of PM means we have no discrete, secure way of sharing those details either. I get enough spam without posting my email address on a public forum. I'd post my name, but its so common that I'd be near impossible to find on Facebook.

I don't mind losing the current PM system and contents as long as there is some workable solution to replace it though. But we do need something like it. Maybe we could all have 'username@retrogamer.net' email addresses assigned when we register, and use that, with a similar front end/notification system as the current PMs.

Will the current moderators/spambusters retain their powers after the move.'I have the power...' and it seems a shame to lose it just de to a software upgrade. If we don't have the power, who will deal with spam?

Oh, and further thought on the stats sidebar. If it must remain, perhaps a simple solution is to move it to the top, or preferably bottom of the page out of the way. It would at least give us the horizontal real estate to view images better, as is common on this forum.
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by markopoloman » Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:28 pm

A forum without PM's ?? :? Yeah, as has been said in the previous posts - that isn't going to be very welcome. I use PM's as a moderator an absolute shed load!
I just thought that PM's were a standard forum thing!
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by Mayhem » Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:35 pm

NickThorpe wrote:Right now, to help inform the direction we take I need you guys to answer one question: considering the alternative methods of communication available (email, social networking websites, etc.) would the loss of private messaging significantly impact your experience of using the forum?
Yes, for all the reasons already mentioned above. Being able to PM someone is a vital part of being on a forum.
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by Bub&Bob » Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:35 pm

Just wondering why the forum downgra....er....I mean upgrade is actually required?

I'm no techie but other than to make it look like the (horrible - sorry) main site I don't really understand why?
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by flatapex » Tue Apr 15, 2014 5:09 pm

I can build a forum with a pm system in about 10 minutes, why do the tech guys seem to find it so difficult?
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by NickThorpe » Tue Apr 15, 2014 6:37 pm

Please remember that right now, we're simply asking a question - details of how we go forward are by no means set in stone. That's why we're asking you all, to ensure that we can come up with something satisfactory. Right now, nobody is saying "yes, on reflection I can do without a PM function" so that's what I'm going to report back.

The PM issue is related to the previously made choice of new forum software. The web team's first avenue of investigation is whether bringing that software up to standard is viable, so as not to waste the time they've already spent on it. From what I'm told, the large size of the forum means that migration is a time-consuming task.
Bub&Bob wrote:Just wondering why the forum downgra....er....I mean upgrade is actually required?

I'm no techie but other than to make it look like the (horrible - sorry) main site I don't really understand why?
From what I'm told, the problem is related to security vulnerabilities - I don't know the specifics as I'm not involved on a technical level, so the most I can do on this front is relay the messages as they come. As the theme will not be remaining the same as what we saw on Friday, brand consistency isn't driving the change.
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by flatapex » Wed Apr 16, 2014 3:27 am

Thanks for the update Nick, I imagine that dealing with an issue like this is entirely frustrating, especially when you have people like me that could post instructions of how to modify the wordpress software :lol:

for reference wordpress software can have a pm function with the installation of a plug-in, developing a forum requires loads of these so compared to bigger jobs like migrating archives its a friday afternoon job, at least we can be thankful that questions are being asked :D

and yes, migrating the forum archive will have someone cursing each of us individually :lol:
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by RetroBob » Wed Apr 16, 2014 4:44 am

Like I said in my previous post, all current functionality should be provided - surely this is a given? Why would you want to give LESS of a service, who in 2014 sells forum software that DOES NOT have PM capability? WHO would buy it? Unless it is to push people on to Facebook or something, not that I am suggesting IP want this; but lets be honest, Facebook is the WORST possible replacement for a forum, in terms of long form discussion, layout, searching (there is none) it is dire. I am using Facebook less and am thinking about closing my account, because frankly it's just mind rotting crap (yes, I know these are my friends).

Private Messaging is one of the cornerstones of a community like this and clearly a lot of trading goes on (unsurprising given the topic) you would have to be pretty dumb to think it's a good idea to cut this functionality.
I have an email address and I have a facebook account, but I'm not connected to most of the people here by those routes. There's a few people whose real names I know, but mostly I only know them here or by usernames, so facebook becomes unusable. The same goes, but to an even greater extent, for email. I have addresses for barely a couple of users here.
This is an excellent point, I couldn't give the first and surname of any forum regulars, even those I have traded with (no offense intended, I'm sure you're the same with me).

Thanks again Nick for your continued communication.
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by flatapex » Wed Apr 16, 2014 5:44 am

RetroBob wrote: This is an excellent point, I couldn't give the first and surname of any forum regulars, even those I have traded with (no offense intended, I'm sure you're the same with me).

Thanks again Nick for your continued communication.
I know what you mean mate, I would be surprised if anyone on here even knew my real first name let alone tried to get to grips with my unusual surname, except the 2 or 3 members i have on facebook lol.

i wouldnt be surprised if the only person at play blackpool that doesnt call me 'flatapex' is my missus :lol:
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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by Liamh1982 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:25 am

But why Wordpress - software I think most of us would associate far more with blogs than with forums (and for good reason)?

I can understand if phpBB has to be discarded for security and/or stability reasons but something like vBulletin would be far more tolerable. For a start, PMs are built-in!

And yeah, I'm not on social networks either.

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Re: New forum - issues and complaints

Post by zapiy » Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:47 am

Why not just upgrade the to the latest version of phpbb, bridge with WP and re skin the forum?
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