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@Cory My suggestion is less with the functionality of the site and more with the content. I very much appreciate that the forum is here to help new folks and by all means I will keep commenting and trying to assist, but I really enjoyed it when it was a members only community for several reasons. For one, the size worked really well. I could get answers on posts in hours; now I have been trying to get answers on a certain issue for several days but it keeps getting drowned out by new posts. Second, the content was a little different with members only because a lot of members have more experience and so there were fewer questions that can be answered by doing a thorough Google search. I totally respect that the forum is designed to spread the hobby and we were ALL beginners at one point. But it would be nice to perhaps have a "members only" section. That's just my personal opinion and I totally respect whichever direction you choose to take the forum. I'm not trying to throw shade at new people! Just nice to read posts about newer topics and to not have posts drowned out.

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33 minutes ago, Kat_Rigel said:

@Cory My suggestion is less with the functionality of the site and more with the content. I very much appreciate that the forum is here to help new folks and by all means I will keep commenting and trying to assist, but I really enjoyed it when it was a members only community for several reasons. For one, the size worked really well. I could get answers on posts in hours; now I have been trying to get answers on a certain issue for several days but it keeps getting drowned out by new posts. Second, the content was a little different with members only because a lot of members have more experience and so there were fewer questions that can be answered by doing a thorough Google search. I totally respect that the forum is designed to spread the hobby and we were ALL beginners at one point. But it would be nice to perhaps have a "members only" section. That's just my personal opinion and I totally respect whichever direction you choose to take the forum. I'm not trying to throw shade at new people! Just nice to read posts about newer topics and to not have posts drowned out.

I feel you here.  Members only was a dream but I wouldn't want to exclude folks that cannot pay....hey I was there most of my life early on. It just drives me nuts as a member I'm limited really bad on "reactions"... maybe limit non-member posts and reactions a little more.  I know there was the rank system.....maybe members could start higher or earn faster.... I'm noticing the "google" questions on the live streams.... Common species...tank size? how many? what to feed?  I like in depth discussion on a species....don't get me wrong but maybe we could have pinned links that list common questions with....(i find this the saddest part)... videos and blogs made by Co-Op and friends.  

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19 minutes ago, Tre said:

I feel you here.  Members only was a dream but I wouldn't want to exclude folks that cannot pay....hey I was there most of my life early on. It just drives me nuts as a member I'm limited really bad on "reactions"... maybe limit non-member posts and reactions a little more.  I know there was the rank system.....maybe members could start higher or earn faster.... I'm noticing the "google" questions on the live streams.... Common species...tank size? how many? what to feed?  I like in depth discussion on a species....don't get me wrong but maybe we could have pinned links that list common questions with....(i find this the saddest part)... videos and blogs made by Co-Op and friends.  

Yes, exactly. I dont want to come across as pretentious but it drives me nuts when people ask for suggestions on how to stock a _____  gallon tank. Here, the livestream, heck even reddit. That's the best part of the hobby, getting to pick whatever you want! I like your ideas regarding member perks, they were more constructive than mine. 

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Currently there is no integration for youtube and this forum. Also I'm not even certain I'd want that integration. Members were brought here first if they wanted to help beta test. Currently this forum is still in beta testing mode. 

Reactions won't be changing unless I find an actual need for it. Perhaps some day in the future there will be a members only section, but it would be associated with the website and not youtube. 

A paid membership to the forum would be considered if the cost of running the forums becomes to great. Every month we pay for the data being stored. Right now we are limited to pictures by design.  If we take the forum to allow people to upload video natively, they'd buy in at different tiers for storage. It's a complex system, that I am developing slowly. 

I realize this sounds like I'm not catering to what people want. However each day like 5 people reach out and say this is how you run a forum. I want X, Y and Z. Which is the exact opposite of each other person. Which means I'll run this forum to the best of my ability and make data driven decisions as always. Unfortunately with data, there are always people who it won't be a part of that data set and feel it's wrong. 

An example I can give, opening up unlimited reactions just turns this into Instagram, where people will farm self gratification based on how much recognition they can get. Which inherently lowers the quality of posts overall. This means someone who takes a great picture of a fish might get 25 reactions. Meanwhile a great DIY post that took a week to craft might only get 10. Thus not rewarding the truly great content. 

Rest assured as time goes on, the forum will change. People will come and go. Right now there is a large influx of new people because we have been letting people know about it. In a few months, many more people will be veterans, they'll have their questions answered and only a few new people will join per day etc. All at the time, more tech will be incorporated into the forum to help with such things. 

I'll end by saying, there is no guarantee this forum will work. However most forums will never get the chance we are giving it, we're $20,000 into development. We have employees watching and participating around the clock. More custom features are being coded by the dev team we have and creative solutions will be tested and may come and go. Once we've got some more coding done, we'll be running A/B testing on different features and such just like we do on the website to optimize for the result we want. Want newbies to search before posting? Change how bold the search box is, put time to make the search results relevant. If that doesn't get what we want, we force a new users to search a topic before they can post, until they are 30 posts in etc. There are plans laid out, roll out deadlines and more. This has been in the works for many months already with feature sets to be rolled out as we can test them, make sure we have the documentation on how to use them. Make sure they integrate with things like our Blog search, Video Search etc. 

I know it's easy to always want something to do something more. It's easy to forget that we've been working on building blocks. Have you noticed that essentially we've never had a spammer? Never had inappropriate pictures? Swear words are getting held by filters? All of these take hours of employee time and I want to make sure the basics are rock solid before moving onto things that are nice features but not the bedrock foundation to build on. 

I'm excited to see where the forum will be in 6 months when we've been able to deploy a bunch of things we have in the works. 

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1 hour ago, Cory said:

Currently there is no integration for youtube and this forum. Also I'm not even certain I'd want that integration. Members were brought here first if they wanted to help beta test. Currently this forum is still in beta testing mode. 

Reactions won't be changing unless I find an actual need for it. Perhaps some day in the future there will be a members only section, but it would be associated with the website and not youtube. 

A paid membership to the forum would be considered if the cost of running the forums becomes to great. Every month we pay for the data being stored. Right now we are limited to pictures by design.  If we take the forum to allow people to upload video natively, they'd buy in at different tiers for storage. It's a complex system, that I am developing slowly. 

I realize this sounds like I'm not catering to what people want. However each day like 5 people reach out and say this is how you run a forum. I want X, Y and Z. Which is the exact opposite of each other person. Which means I'll run this forum to the best of my ability and make data driven decisions as always. Unfortunately with data, there are always people who it won't be a part of that data set and feel it's wrong. 

An example I can give, opening up unlimited reactions just turns this into Instagram, where people will farm self gratification based on how much recognition they can get. Which inherently lowers the quality of posts overall. This means someone who takes a great picture of a fish might get 25 reactions. Meanwhile a great DIY post that took a week to craft might only get 10. Thus not rewarding the truly great content. 

Rest assured as time goes on, the forum will change. People will come and go. Right now there is a large influx of new people because we have been letting people know about it. In a few months, many more people will be veterans, they'll have their questions answered and only a few new people will join per day etc. All at the time, more tech will be incorporated into the forum to help with such things. 

I'll end by saying, there is no guarantee this forum will work. However most forums will never get the chance we are giving it, we're $20,000 into development. We have employees watching and participating around the clock. More custom features are being coded by the dev team we have and creative solutions will be tested and may come and go. Once we've got some more coding done, we'll be running A/B testing on different features and such just like we do on the website to optimize for the result we want. Want newbies to search before posting? Change how bold the search box is, put time to make the search results relevant. If that doesn't get what we want, we force a new users to search a topic before they can post, until they are 30 posts in etc. There are plans laid out, roll out deadlines and more. This has been in the works for many months already with feature sets to be rolled out as we can test them, make sure we have the documentation on how to use them. Make sure they integrate with things like our Blog search, Video Search etc. 

I know it's easy to always want something to do something more. It's easy to forget that we've been working on building blocks. Have you noticed that essentially we've never had a spammer? Never had inappropriate pictures? Swear words are getting held by filters? All of these take hours of employee time and I want to make sure the basics are rock solid before moving onto things that are nice features but not the bedrock foundation to build on. 

I'm excited to see where the forum will be in 6 months when we've been able to deploy a bunch of things we have in the works. 

Thank you for the response, I totally respect that you guys are doing a lot of work and of course you can't cater to each person. But just as you say in your videos, "give a thumbs up if you like it, thumbs down if you don't, that's how I know what content you like." I only offer my opinion as feedback for you to consider; you are 100% entitled to run the forum as you please at a rate that you feel ensures quality, prioritizing the aspects you value. Please don't think that I am attempting to demean the team's work in any way. I'm hoping that was a cut and paste response from a different post as it touched on multiple things that I didn't think I really bought up. I offer you a peace taco! ☮🌮 Just trying to offer constructive feedback, which is of course only a reflection of my own opinion.

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To other forum members, personally I hope we keep the 'Files' section of the forum as an area for uploading books and research papers that would not otherwise have a home on the Forum.

I would prefer it not become a place to upload movies and photos as has begun to happen recently.

I fear if we keep doing this the files area may get closed down.

There other ways to share videos on the internet, but not so many for safely sharing old fish books and such.

Just my 2 cents.

 

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I think things like “integrating with X common platform” sound very routine and normal in theory but in reality tend to be incredibly expensive and bug prone to do. $20k sounds like a lot, but in the world of web development it’s really not nutty, it’s 200 hrs of midwestern midrange developer time (I have no clue how Co-Op does dev as a disclaimer).

For that price range you are generally taking an existing solution that comes close to meeting your wishlist and building onto it. You see efficiencies because you’re building off an existing code base that is generally supported and upgraded over time just like your computer. However, anything you totally customize or build for your needs isn’t part of that existing code base - it’s totally on you to maintain over time as X platform changes its integration standards or X browser changes how it does Y. People who dive deep into customizing everything right off the bat end up spending unreasonable amounts of money maintaining functionality it turns only a small minority of users care about (or worse, none).

Yes, you can outsource to a lower cost region and do everything for less but that will generally cost more in terms of time and knowledge that you have to supply, at least in my experience. 

This isn’t to undercut the investment at all, I’m just saying for 20k you can’t get FB. It is a ton, ton more of an investment than a normal hobbyist forum. To build something that lasts long term you have to go slow and smart and in iterations  

OK, that’s the end of the speech I wish I could give every client with too many priorities.

For users of things like this who want to help shape it: they will develop the functionality they see people finding workarounds to achieve. We want a newbie FAQ section that links out to the best video? We have that capability right now, it just takes _our_ time and thought and energy. But that is how you build a lasting community. 

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2 minutes ago, Levi_Aquatics said:

I have been having problems posting pictures. They all und up being upside down! Is this just me or a problem with the forum?

Are you posting from a phone or laptop or desktop?

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Don't know for sure, but that was my guess, which is why I asked. Phones like to helpfully autorotate things.

Occasionally someone posting will have that problem, but it is not common, and I wished I had asked about the device they were using. 

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44 minutes ago, Levi_Aquatics said:

I am using an iPhone 

For me my iphone will not auto-rotate photos and when I tested 2 ways of holding the phone landscape, only one worked (the other did upload upside down).

Try a photo taken with your iphone's camera to the LEFT, not to the right - or opposite how you have been doing it.

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Iphones have this problem with most software as they don't store the data like other devices. So Iphones typically have the sideways pictures because it doesn't stamp the photo with what should be the bottom I believe. At least last time I looked into it when it was being a problem. 

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I rarely have an issue with iPhone photos, only occasionally with top-down images, which makes some sense.

For compatibility, I often use this setting:

4BC01331-BF2F-4796-983F-D032752D9684.jpeg.824bb8940ff5130503b6721036ac7669.jpeg

However, I think this forum is modern enough to support the more modern high efficiency formats.

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2 hours ago, RovingGinger said:

For me my iphone will not auto-rotate photos and when I tested 2 ways of holding the phone landscape, only one worked (the other did upload upside down).

Try a photo taken with your iphone's camera to the LEFT, not to the right - or opposite how you have been doing it.

Thank you!

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1 hour ago, Streetwise said:

I rarely have an issue with iPhone photos, only occasionally with top-down images, which makes some sense.

For compatibility, I often use this setting:

4BC01331-BF2F-4796-983F-D032752D9684.jpeg.824bb8940ff5130503b6721036ac7669.jpeg

However, I think this forum is modern enough to support the more modern high efficiency formats.

Thanks 

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1 hour ago, Cory said:

Iphones have this problem with most software as they don't store the data like other devices. So Iphones typically have the sideways pictures because it doesn't stamp the photo with what should be the bottom I believe. At least last time I looked into it when it was being a problem. 

Thank you for answering my question!

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On 9/17/2020 at 9:33 PM, Cory said:

Currently there is no integration for youtube and this forum. Also I'm not even certain I'd want that integration. Members were brought here first if they wanted to help beta test. Currently this forum is still in beta testing mode. 

Reactions won't be changing unless I find an actual need for it. Perhaps some day in the future there will be a members only section, but it would be associated with the website and not youtube. 

A paid membership to the forum would be considered if the cost of running the forums becomes to great. Every month we pay for the data being stored. Right now we are limited to pictures by design.  If we take the forum to allow people to upload video natively, they'd buy in at different tiers for storage. It's a complex system, that I am developing slowly. 

I realize this sounds like I'm not catering to what people want. However each day like 5 people reach out and say this is how you run a forum. I want X, Y and Z. Which is the exact opposite of each other person. Which means I'll run this forum to the best of my ability and make data driven decisions as always. Unfortunately with data, there are always people who it won't be a part of that data set and feel it's wrong. 

An example I can give, opening up unlimited reactions just turns this into Instagram, where people will farm self gratification based on how much recognition they can get. Which inherently lowers the quality of posts overall. This means someone who takes a great picture of a fish might get 25 reactions. Meanwhile a great DIY post that took a week to craft might only get 10. Thus not rewarding the truly great content. 

Rest assured as time goes on, the forum will change. People will come and go. Right now there is a large influx of new people because we have been letting people know about it. In a few months, many more people will be veterans, they'll have their questions answered and only a few new people will join per day etc. All at the time, more tech will be incorporated into the forum to help with such things. 

I'll end by saying, there is no guarantee this forum will work. However most forums will never get the chance we are giving it, we're $20,000 into development. We have employees watching and participating around the clock. More custom features are being coded by the dev team we have and creative solutions will be tested and may come and go. Once we've got some more coding done, we'll be running A/B testing on different features and such just like we do on the website to optimize for the result we want. Want newbies to search before posting? Change how bold the search box is, put time to make the search results relevant. If that doesn't get what we want, we force a new users to search a topic before they can post, until they are 30 posts in etc. There are plans laid out, roll out deadlines and more. This has been in the works for many months already with feature sets to be rolled out as we can test them, make sure we have the documentation on how to use them. Make sure they integrate with things like our Blog search, Video Search etc. 

I know it's easy to always want something to do something more. It's easy to forget that we've been working on building blocks. Have you noticed that essentially we've never had a spammer? Never had inappropriate pictures? Swear words are getting held by filters? All of these take hours of employee time and I want to make sure the basics are rock solid before moving onto things that are nice features but not the bedrock foundation to build on. 

I'm excited to see where the forum will be in 6 months when we've been able to deploy a bunch of things we have in the works. 

Hey Cory, in case you haven't heard it today...this is how you run a forum....I want x,y,z. 😂

Sounds like you have a Chicken Little situation on your hands! I appreciate everything you and your team do for the hobby! I don't mind an increase in posts, even if I have to do some sifting sometimes. Just like with YT, I always learn something unexpected that I wouldn't have searched for when I'm sifting through content looking for an answer to whatever question is plaguing me on that particular day. 

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Just want to mention that I am super thankful for the "restored your comment" feature. I thought I had posted in a thread, and later on in the day I went to look at the thread again and *GASP* my comment wasn't there! I begrudgingly started my comment again, but voila! "Your comment has been restored" so that all I had to do was press "post," (which I had apparently forgotten to do the first time.) Whew!

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@Cory Would like to give some feedback. First I really like this forum and thank you for putting so much money, time, and effort into it. I liked the chat that was going on before but this platform is so much better. One thing that I would like to see change is on Android devices. When viewing the forum from google chrome you have to scroll all the way to the bottom of the forum thread to mark as read. On the computer it is at the top of the forum thread. Would like to suggest having that option at the top of the thread for those phone devices using chrome. 

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