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Community Feedback: New Forum Software Is Live!

19253 Views 252 Replies 58 Participants Last post by  vs-Admin
We are excited to announce that we are live on our new forum platform!

It’s been a long time coming. Let’s face it. Sometimes older forum technology lags behind other parts of the internet. Although seeing the same format for a long time is comforting, the member experience shouldn’t include dealing with outdated, unsafe, slow software.

The transition to a new platform will never be 100% smooth but the days of dealing with out of date forum software are over. We have teams dedicated to building a world-class community for you. The development has been steady with regular software releases since May 2019. Asking members for feedback and coming up with ideas for improvement is what we want.

Speed and Reliability Are Key
No one should have to wait for information. This site has been built to be much faster and more reliable, period.

New Homepage Experience
Our algorithm will serve a personal customized feed based on your prior engagement with content on the site. If you’ve liked and or commented, or are following certain topics that are of interest to you, similar content will appear at the top of the homepage.

We have introduced new search algorithms, powered by an industry-leading AI platform, to help you find information faster. We plan to roll out new features to continue improving search, and to power many additional areas of the forum.

Due to the volume of content, our search platform may take some time to complete indexing over the first few days after migrating. During this process, you may see a limited number of posts until indexing has been completed. We appreciate your patience.

Finding Your Way Around
We have made the design clean and simple to use. Near the upper right-hand corner of the community, you will see navigation icons.

The first icon is for what’s new on the site.

Clicking on it, by default, will take you to new unread posts. On that page, you can click on additional tabs as well, such as Popular, if you prefer to view active topics.

Clicking the list icon next to “NEW” will bring you to the full forum listing.

Clicking your avatar will give you a drop-down menu for all things related to your account.

You can also navigate more by clicking the 3 vertical dots.

Dark Mode
We have introduced Dark Mode. One of our favorite features allows you to access the site with a power-saving, and easier on the eyes dark mode. You can access it in the drop-down menu under the 3 vertical dots.

Save Bookmarks
Now you can save your favorite discussion threads and posts! Bookmarks are a handy way to remember and easily find great content or stuff you want to read later.

We also wanted to make it easier for new users to understand the lingo of forums. We have cleaned up various language to more commonly recognized phrases including:
  • Following - Thread subscriptions, and Watched are now known as Following
  • Conversations - Private Messages or PMs are now conversations and can be accessed from the user avatar drop-down in the main navigation
  • Showcase - Showcase is designed for users to "showcase" items/projects through the use of uploaded images, text descriptions and custom content categories. It’s a way to visually and textually provide detailed information on the content you wish to share. The showcase would be similar to a catalog, whereas the gallery would be like a photo album. It can be accessed from the drop-down menu with the 3 dots.
Take a tour and look around! Check out the Help section for some quick FAQs about the new platform.

Please keep all feedback, questions, concerns, requests for help, etc. regarding the new platform right here in this Feedback thread. This will help us make sure not to miss a request for help and also let us pass along your thoughts to our Product team. The Admins and I will be here to help along the way taking note of your comments.

- Community Management Team
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Firstly - Why has the Hobby Traders Forum disappeared. I have seen posts from at least two people who were members of the Hobby Trader Forum asking why they can no longer promote their products but neither appear to have received a reply.

Secondly - On the old platform Premium Members were able to list items for sale in the Slotforum Swap Shop and were also able to get a discount at Pendle Slot Racing but neither of these benefits are listed any longer on the premium membership page.

Is the Swap Shop now free to all members and what has happened to the Pendle Spot Racing discount?
Just tried to send a message to another member. The 420 character limit on messages is a joke. By the time I had condensed down my message it was barely intelligible.
The Hobby Traders who had active threads do not appear in the archive. The point of the Hobby Traders threads was to advertise cottage industry products to all forum members so making the Hobby Traders thread visible solely to premium members would be a retrograde step for the traders.

I had a look at the "advantages" of premium membership and it appeared to offer little other than getting rid of adverts which seems very poor value for money.
If Pendle are still offering a discount to forum members with premium membership that needs to be made clear on the premium membership page. The discount would be a significant incentive to buy premium membership for many of us.

The link in post 140 won't open for me and there is no mention of any discount in the Pendleslot News thread..
I am sorry but I don't know the names of every trader who was live in the Hobby Traders Forum but I do know that they included
Andi Rowland Drsigns, Slotcarman Resins and Amato Slot Car Design.

Hope that is some help
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The Hobby Traders forum is still a shambles 2 weeks after the problem was reported.
Andi Rowland is the only one who has managed to get a thread up and running again after the move. Surely this is one of the problems that should take priority as it was a valuable resource both for the traders and forum members.
One member of the Hobby Traders section has already posted that he has had no help in reinstating his thread so he is leaving the forum and no doubt others will follow unless the problem is sorted quickly.

The character limit on personal messages is an absolute joke. I wanted to give a prospective new member information about our club but the character limit made it impossible to pass on any meaningful information.

I appreciate that there was a need to move to a new platform but I was worried from the outset that it would cause huge problems. I was a member of what was one of the best historic aviation forums on the web but it changed platform and a majority of the members became so disenchanted by the resulting loss of functionality (which took months to resolve) and other problems that they left and have never returned. In it's heyday that forum had 15 to 20 new threads a day and now gets one or two new threads a week. How the mighty have fallen!

I have noticed that the amount of new threads here seems to have decreased significantly since the launch of the new software which should be causing alarm bells to ring with admin.

I don't like the way the new opening page presents me with recommended for you threads and I find that when I switch to the new posts page it doesn't appear to show everything that is new so both pages are , to me, utterly useless and must, at best, be confusing for any new visitors.
The forum always had it's problems but overall it was a great place to visit and for me the upgrade has made the forum more complicated to view and much less "friendly" than it used to be. I am disappointed but after experiencing the problems with changes on the aviation forum I mentioned above I am not surprised.

Please get the problems sorted and let us enjoy the forum again.
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Thanks Beardy56 - not used to having filters applied when I haven't asked for them and wasn't even aware that there were filters for that page. Just goes to show it can be difficult to teach an old dog new tricks!
I am beginning to wonder if any of us are wanted here.
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I see we have a new section headed "Vendor Deals"
When I click on the heading I don't have sufficent privileges to post.

What is the purpose of this awful "Americanism".
Is it for any of your customers/members to post items for sale, is it intended for businesses to post special offers or does it have another mysterious purpose?
What privileges do I require to post in it. At a guess it will be premium membership.

If you don't explain the purpose of the section and how to use it then you can't expect to have anyone post there.
It is for Paid Vendors/Advertisers. Only Vendors would be able to post there.

Members have their own section for this.

- Cricket
Thanks for the explanation.
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