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Minor upgrade 5/9


roddy
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roddy
Message added by roddy

This is what a "content message" looks like. I can add them to specific topics. 

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As I said above Shelley: I'm not that fussed about off-site promotion. If you have somewhere you think would be interested and you're not going to annoy anyone, by all means post about it. But do it for their benefit, more than for ours.

 

I'm not going to get personally involved in it though - there's too often a quid-pro-quo expected."Hey, we posted a link to your forum on our Facebook page, any chance you could recommend our new..." Not interested.

 

On 06/10/2017 at 4:48 PM, edelweis said:

1) what happens when a student creates a CF account with login from Facebook, then arrives in China ? Can they still access their CF account with a VPN? without a VPN ?

They would need a VPN. Some time back I added notes to the registration and log-in panes to this effect - anyone registering is reminded this might not work from China, anyone logging-in is given my email address in case they can't log-in. I really should be selling VPNs there.

 

On 06/10/2017 at 4:48 PM, edelweis said:

2) how about integrating login from Chinese social media such as qq, weixin, etc?

Honestly, I suspect this would only increase the number of Chinese high-school and college students who want to practice their English with us. I don't see this as a huge advantage, unless you've forgotten that Chinese has four tones and foreigners shouldn't worry about them. Also, the software supports only a limited range of login handlers and none of them are Chinese.

 

16 hours ago, edelweis said:

how about reducing the number of pre-moderated posts down to 1 or 2, if 0 is too drastic?

The current set up is that you automatically get bumped into full users at 5 posts. However from the very first post we can manually promote them with a click. If we see someone who asks an in-depth question, click. If someone makes three low-content posts in quick success and registered with [email protected] we'll either delete, or approve them and wait and see what they do next. The quicker people are out of moderation, the less work for admins. If you're keen to get moderation time down further though, Edelweis, please feel free to respond positively to my message of August 11 and we'll give you approve buttons all of your own.

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1 hour ago, roddy said:

I'm not going to get personally involved in it though - there's too often a quid-pro-quo expected.

 

Didn't expect you to get involved and there is nothing expected in return. i do these reviews for free, and no one should be annoyed as I am asked to write them. I just wanted to find out if you had any objections to a review of Chinese Forums.

 

So I will get on and do something in the next few weeks, its not time critical. I will post a link to it on the Forum.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 04/10/2017 at 4:07 PM, roddy said:

Right, everyone who's reading this have a look and tell me what you think. Chinese-forums.com/test

 

Hoping to spend some time on this next week - if there's anything you'd like / hate to see on a revamped home page, let me know. 

 

Nor have I been idle, btw - a small crack team of new admins are in training behind the scenes and enjoying themselves in a top-secret admin forum playing with new admin tools I've made. Probably spent more time working on the site in the last few weeks than I have in the last few years.

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Despite the fact that @Lu and I expressed our dislike of the use of the heart and this below being roddy's reply, we still have a heart. Now look its not a big deal, its not going to make any difference to anything in the long run, but I just thought as you are revamping CF maybe I could give you a reminder. Please, thank you.

 

Unless I mistook what roddy agreed to which is possible with posts coming in different orders other than chronological.

 

 

On 11/09/2017 at 5:28 PM, roddy said:

Fair enough - Imron, do you want to go in and make changes? 

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17 hours ago, roddy said:

Probably spent more time working on the site in the last few weeks than I have in the last few years.

 

Not sure which emoticon best expresses fear and loathing, but that's the one I would choose. Every time you go all "hands on," Roddy, it screws thing up big time. Does the forum really need so much "fixing up?" Is it really that badly broken as it is now?

 

You are going to wind up with more and more young "techy" types who enjoy playing games on line as the backbone of your users. Not regular people who care about Chinese language and culture.

 

With your never-ending meaningless changes you are going to drive off everyone else. You are going to encourage casual visitors who post one or two rather silly questions or comments and then wander away. You are going to discourage people who are willing to spend time and effort to make original contributions and engage in sustained serious dialogue. You are going to promote lots of quips and cute haha one-liners and make the forum superficial and frivolous.

 

I suggest that what you really need to do is ask yourself why people who come here and show some promise only wind up posting twice and then leave. I'm talking about people who express a sincere interest in some China-related topic or indicate some knowledge or expertise that they are willing to share. I believe that happens at least in part because every time you engage in one of these "Great Leap Forward" revisions, you are making the forum more and more difficult for ordinary people to use. "Only Tech Wizards Need Apply."

 

The only people who are willing to put up with that kind of nonsense are members of a small cult, people who are either very bright and don't find it objectionable or people who are lonesome and idle and have nothing else better to do. You are driving potential participants away with this compulsive and ill-advised tinkering.

 

If you want to have 16 kinds of "upvote" icons, each with its own subtle shade of meaning, great. Knock yourself out. The "cult" will be happy. Everyone else will be painfully puzzled, yet again.

 

I really have no idea what you are trying to do, but I don't like it one bit.

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@abcdefg You know I have a great respect for you for various reasons, I do feel though that you have some what over reacted to the minor upgrades. I personally don't mind, things need to be updated and re-vamped to ensure security and to keep it fresh.

 

I had actually forgotten completely about the "heart icon" thing until 889 reminded me by, yes, clicking the heart icon and liking my post, so it then popped into my inbox and I looked back at the discussion. I have, like Lu, kind of got used to it, so hey what's an icon between friends.

 

All other changes will be absorbed and before long it will feel as comfortable as it always did.

 

Don't stress, drink tea and relax:P

 

 

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@abcdefg I think this is a case of crossed wires somewhat.  Here are some things to consider.

 

With regards to upgrades of the forums software, we're somewhat between a rock and hard place, in that if we don't upgrade we miss out on various security and bug fixes that help prevent unscrupulous persons hacking the forums and stealing/deleting data.  If we do upgrade, then we're at the mercy of the company that develops the forums software and have to take all the new features (which we may not want) if we also want the security updates.

 

Roddy usually tends to put off upgrading major versions with significantly new features for as long as possible (usually as long the developer is providing security patches for the older versions) but eventually they stop supporting older versions and we have to upgrade.  These are the 'meaningless' upgrades that cause the most upheaval for you and other users (myself and Roddy included sometimes), but they are not really meaningless because they allow us to keep the forums safe and secure from bad actors on the internet.

 

This is unrelated to what Roddy mentioned in his post above.  The changes he is talking about there are for tools to help with administration and moderation of the site, and are available to administrators and moderators only.  If you think changes to the main forums over the years have been bad, the changes to the admin tools have been worse and Roddy's updates help address that and make things easier for the admins.  The impetus behind that is to get a couple more people helping out with the administration and moderation of the site.  Both roddy and myself have been quite busy of late, and daily moderation tasks have been falling behind.  Hopefully a couple of new recruits to the admin team will help address that problem, and with the work Roddy has been doing, they'll have improved tools to do it with.

 

The new additions to the Admin team will be announced once they've had a bit more time to get up to speed.  They're regular members of good standing in the Chinese-forums community, so expect no major upheavals in how things are moderated, just that there will be others besides roddy and myself doing moderation.

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Re: the upvote icons, I get that we want only positive reactions,

but do we want only serious and proper ones (helpful, good question, thanks)

or could we (someday) add not-so-serious but frequently inferred ones (agree, lol) ?

 

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9 hours ago, imron said:

@abcdefg I think this is a case of crossed wires somewhat.  Here are some things to consider.

 

Thanks for that cogent explanation, @imron -- It makes sense and now I understand better why some of these things that appear random, capricious, and unnecessary are actually essential because they are linked to less visible safety and security issues. I will adapt, as I have before, but not without some occasional moans and groans.

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14 hours ago, edelweis said:

or could we (someday) add not-so-serious but frequently inferred ones (agree, lol) ?

I think you could just use the heart for that. It makes sense to me that the icons are mostly geared to good questions and helpful answers, since those constitute the useful content that makes this forum, well, useful.

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