An Open Forum on the Forums. UPDATED OP Feb 5

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Lobo
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:03AM
The Mods and I have been discussing how we can make things easier in here to keep communication on track. Well, frankly we have been talking about how scattered everything is and how we haven't really taken the time to reconfigure things to help reflect how the community has changed. This thread isn't going to be about the past, it's going to be about the future. So let me establish some guidelines:

1- This isn't about the Moderation of the forums.
2- We want to ensure we can provide clear routes for our members to important information.
3- We would like to know what things you would like to see(be reasonable) us provide sections for.
4- We want to know what you think can probably go.

Now, clearly this is a general discussion on how we can improve your experience in here. We aren't at the point where we can formally update the functionality of these boards, but we are getting close. What we would like to do is re-organize what we have and merge or remove any sections that might be redundant or unnecessary.

This is going to be something Pink_cotton_candy will be watching and moderating but she isn't up yet and I haven't told her it's her ball to run with exactly, but she has been working on so much to make this happen I wanted to get it going before she woke up.

I wanted to start the thread so I could lay down the law on how all this is going to go down. Don't make this about anything except the reconfiguration of the boards. Don't bring emotion into it or anything off topic. Be social, be helpful, be engaging. Participate.

Thank you.

TAKE NOTE: Functionality Discussions will have to wait for now. This is 100% about the organization of the current boards. We can't accommodate anything other than that for right now.

Update 1 Friday Feb 1 Afternoon: Comments from Pink start here

*************************************************************************************
Update 2 Tuesday Feb 5 Morning...A long one. Do scroll the thread for more info.

I’ve collected all the serious thoughts and categorized them into where they fit into our plans. Please note the categorized headers, none of this is finalized but we wanted to make sure you know we’re listening!

Pretty sure:
The forum structure will completely change. In addition to a new Announcement forum, we’ll start with the existing forums but move them around to fit under the following Forum Sections. The Announcement Forum will be threads started by admin/mods and locked with a link to discussion. Admin/mods will update with new posts with necessary links (i.e. to reboot of discussion). Topics that affect the entire community, will be held in Discussion forum, a subcategory of Announcements. Topics that affect particular groups of contributors will be held in their appropriate forum - i.e. video. I’m including a few of the forums that will move into them to illustrate:
  • Announcement/HQ News Section
  • Help & Support (help, submit suggestions)
  • Resources (keywording, tools & apps)
  • Collections (editorial, illustrations, audio, PP)
  • Social (off-topic - races & chat, lypses, in action)

Ideas That Are Being Considered:
  • Rename PTOTW we ended up combining wdstock's two suggestions to form Weekly Showcase
  • Combine minilypse & meetups forums; photography & software
  • Individual forum guidelines (rules on participation in each individual forum and tips for you on getting the most out it)
  • Creative Research forum (Exclusives) update more frequently
  • Suggestion forum: use what I interpreted from amygdala_imagery and see you work together in groups if you all have an idea for the site and need to flush it out. It seems that’s one thing that might help tremendously for utilizing this forum better.
  • Bug thread as sticky
  • Add life to the Designer resources - do you have suggestions on how?
  • Battle Royale forum goes until it is needed again
  • Keep better track of useful forum threads

Ideas We Are Unable to Fulfill at This Time:
We’re either unsure about the idea or physically unable to complete over the next 30 days
  • Search forums - for now, use Google advanced search
  • Subscribe to threads properly - ETA: for now, "unsubscribe" works or if you started the thread, you can see activity on your posts under "Recent Responses" section...scroll way down on the main forum page
  • Making the forums searchable by username
  • Forum remembers your last read position on each thread
  • Threaded discussions
  • “Jump to” page - for now change the page number in the URL see this post
  • Blog-style area where dev/tech teams post updates
  • Buyer specific forum (we’ve thought about it before starting this thread) one forum could be a “Help me find...” for Buyers. For now, we allow that in Request Content. We can make this more obvious to Buyers. We’ll focus more on the Buyers if/when this time comes. For those of you with detailed suggestions, we’ll refer back so don’t hesitate to keep posting ideas for this.
  • Highlight admin/mod posts in threads. sjlocke kindly made a Greasemonkey script for now: IS_forumHighlighter.user.js
  • Member-only access
  • Reddit forum structure as a model

Ideas We Are Not Considering:
Possible alternatives have been included where applicable
  • Ongoing earnings forum or thread; Diamond+ forum - consider starting a race or discussion thread
  • Allowing opinions on work from others - more general than critique request forums. This is allowed in race/social threads.
  • My Threads from profile page has nothing to do with the forums but we’ll pass the request along
  • Grievances forum - we already allow a few discussions that are pertinent. For further venting needs, find an off-site discussion forum
  • Rating system so new folks can tell who is a troll and who is helpful - tried that already
  • “Where to find” forum for those seeking resources - this will be guides and guidelines for each forum
  • Limit number of post depending your rank and behavior - Lobo’s ban hammer seems to do the trick
  • Individuals create their own forums and membership of those by invitation - try Facebook or start a race/social group which will be visible to community

A quick definition of the terms, obvious for most, but I get tripped up talking about it so I want to make sure everyone knows:
  • Forum Section is the main header, i.e. currently General Discussion, French & German, Contributor Resources, etc.
  • Forum is the subsection of the above. These currently include Discussion, Help, iStock Tools/Apps, etc.
  • Thread is the string of posts started by admin, mods, or individual members
  • Post is the individual post in a thread
  • OP is the Original Poster - the person who starts the thread AND it is also the Original Post - the first post in a thread


(Edited on 2013-02-09 19:43:43 by pink_cotton_candy)
bunhill
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Photo downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 250 Illustration downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:09AM
Great.

I think that software and photography could be merged.

I think that 'Request New Content' would be complimented by a separate section called something like - help me find what I am looking for. And maybe both of them should be under a general Content section where iStock briefs could also live.
Willowpix
Member is a Silver contributor and has 2,500 - 9,999 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:10AM
Good idea. Thoughts percolating.
whitemay
Member is a Diamond contributor and has 25,000 - 199,999 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:21AM
Could Meetups and MiniLypses be merged under an Events title?

Is Logos still needed? This no longer exists - sorry. I still have a link but it only leads to the main Forum page.

Any chance of a really good search being implemented? One where we could search by date would be good.

(Edited on 2013-02-01 06:52:02 by whitemay)
Lobo
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:23AM
I might see about providing a brief outline of what we have already come up later today. Let's see what we can do over the next week or so and then we will get rolling on moving things around.

TAKE NOTE: Functionality Discussions will have to wait for now. This is 100% about the organization of the current boards. We can't accommodate anything other than that for right now.

(Edited on 2013-02-01 06:25:15 by Lobo)
ClarkandCompany
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:37AM
Would be good to encourage buyers into the forums more. Currently it looks as if the forums are mainly for contributors, I understand  that there are some contributors who are also buyers who maybe are mods as well
jjneff
Member is a Bronze contributor and has 250 - 2,499 Photo downloadsMember is a Diamond contributor and has 12,500 - 99,999 Video downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 125 Audio downloadsExclusiveExclusive iStockphoto VideographerExclusive iStockphoto Audio Artist
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:37AM
I say make a thread for just earnings, people always want to talk about it so give them a central location to have their hay day!
PaCondryx
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Illustration downloadsExclusive iStockphoto Illustrator
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:41AM
Posted By whitemay:



Is Logos still needed?



Where is the logo forum? I can't find it anymore, thanks.
busypix
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Photo downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 250 Illustration downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:43AM

Improve the search function. Please!


 
PenelopeB
Member is a Silver contributor and has 2,500 - 9,999 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:47AM
Move the minilypse thread back up near the top please!
whitemay
Member is a Diamond contributor and has 25,000 - 199,999 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:51AM
Posted By PaCondryx:

Posted By whitemay:

Is Logos still needed?




Where is the logo forum? I can't find it anymore, thanks.

Sorry - my error. It isn't there now but the link appears in my list on the lefthand side - that might be one of Sean's Greasemonkey scripts.
diane555
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Photo downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 250 Video downloadsMember is a Diamond contributor and has 25,000 - 199,999 Illustration downloadsExclusiveExclusive iStockphoto IllustratorExclusive iStockphoto Videographer
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:52AM
I think the "Creative Research" forum was/is a great idea and resource that just needs a little more love. I would love to see more happening in there
anchev
Member is a Silver contributor and has 2,500 - 9,999 Photo downloads
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:55AM
One of the most boring things is to have to read through many pages in a thread just to find a reply from HQ members. I asked for this some time ago and I see it happened: to have the replies in the OP with links to the posts. This is good. I hope it will become a tradition.

A small and easy thing to do would be to have posts by Mods and Admins in a different color (e.g. #00F). Hopefully when functionality fixes come - this might be styled more efficiently and automatically.

Also the closing of a thread just in order to start a new thread for the same thing is not helpful but sends a message of trying to bury an ongoing discussion. This doesn't clear the mess but adds more mess. The quotations in the OP would be a better solution.

Bug reporting thread must be only one and made sticky. And it should not be obligatory for us to read through the growing list of bugs. We don't have time for this and it is not our job. What we report must be taken by moderator (who knows the list) and if not included already - added to the list. If it is included - the post can be ignored, not necessarily deleted. Everyone should be welcomed to report the bugs (even repeatedly) instead of being moderated for that. So the message "PLEASE READ (ALL THE 10 PAGES) BEFORE REPORTING" must go.

(Edited on 2013-02-01 07:00:17 by anchev)
lostinbids
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Photo downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 250 Video downloadsExclusiveExclusive iStockphoto Videographer
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:58AM
How about ditching the suggestion forum.  It seems to be the place where ideas go to die.  If it is a good idea it would gain support in the discussion or help forum, if it is rubbish it will die all by itself.
SamBurt
Member is a Silver contributor and has 2,500 - 9,999 Photo downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 125 Audio downloadsExclusiveExclusive iStockphoto Audio Artist
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 7:01AM
The Designer section needs something doing with it I think. They are the people who buy our work, we need to get them inspired, interested, active, happy and purchasing!
Lobo
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 7:04AM

Posted By lostinbids:
How about ditching the suggestion forum.  It seems to be the place where ideas go to die.  If it is a good idea it would gain support in the discussion or help forum, if it is rubbish it will die all by itself.

How about we make it work better? I think you are right in most cases. It hasn't been leveraged as it could have been. Here we are figuring out how we can make it work
PaCondryx
Member is a Gold contributor and has 10,000 - 24,999 Illustration downloadsExclusive iStockphoto Illustrator
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 7:05AM
thanks whitemay i found some of the links in the illustration forum
cbarnesphotography
Member is a Bronze contributor and has 250 - 2,499 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 7:10AM

Posted By diane555:
I think the "Creative Research" forum was/is a great idea and resource that just needs a little more love. I would love to see more happening in there :)

Agreed.
youngvet
Member is a Silver contributor and has 2,500 - 9,999 Photo downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 7:34AM
Posted By busypix:


Improve the search function. Please!



I gotta second this. I don't know how Sean or some others find stuff in the history because even a specific search by me pulls up such random results, and in no specific order.


 
alvarez
Member is a Diamond contributor and has 25,000 - 199,999 Photo downloadsMember is a contributor and has less than 250 Illustration downloadsExclusive
Posted Fri Feb 1, 2013 7:43AM
Admin forum posts should always be appended to the original thread post. I have seen you do it and I think that is great!

Doing this does not require any new functionality. It helps us not have to read the very long threads to find the official infos.

Apart from that, im quite happy with the forums and think they work well.
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