I'm very glad to say that the forum changes that we've been working on have been implemented, and I'd like to give an update on the latest changes we've put into place. Again, your feedback shapes the forums, and we want this to be a place that for you to share and enjoy. Please keep the suggestions coming!
Best regards, and I wish you a safe and happy holiday season,
Logins. You will no longer be logged out automatically overnight. Please note that you now have to manually log out — even rebooting your computer means that you will come back to the site logged in. The session will still expire after four weeks of inactivity, however.
Design. Our designer has taken your suggestions and made changes to the way each post displays. The replies to each topic are each contained in their own boxes, and should be easier to see as a unit when scrolling through.
Font Sizes. As per your suggestions and requests, we've bumped up the sizes on fonts throughout, and have made some changes to the text that make things clearer and easier to read.
Tool bar placement. The toolbar lets you sort your posts the way you want. It now has been redesigned so that options are more visible. This toolbar is above the replies to every topic, and allows you to view posts in the order that you wish. The topic (by the person who started the thread) is always at the top, and all of the replies can be sorted below (by date, newest, oldest, or organized by thread).
Photos. The user interface for uploading photos has been simplified and refined. Since we're hosting these images on our servers, there's a limit of 1 MB (1024KB) per image. For best results, I'd suggest a maximum width of 600px. You can use an image editor or a site such as Pixlr.com to rotate and crop and resize your images.
- Click the image icon
- A window will show you your uploaded photos. You can click one of these, or upload a new image:
- Browse your computer for the image you wish, and click "Submit".
- You are presented with a few options that you can customize. Change any settings you wish and click "Insert" to put the image into your post.
Seeing who's online. We've expanded this to be included on all of the main forum pages. Please note that to see who's online, you no longer have to be logged in.
Private Messages. Some of you have indicated that you need to add someone as a friend to send messages. This is only true if that recipient has blocked personal messages. It is an individual setting, allowing each user to block personal messages if they choose. By default, messages are not blocked. You may change this at any time in your user settings (Click "My House & Home" on the tool bar, and Edit Account Settings)
Subscriptions. Also as per your requests — soon as you reply to a thread, you will receive notifications by email of any replies. You can manage these preferences (Click "My House & Home" on the tool bar, and choose "Notifications")
Smileys / Emoticons. We've added a few more and can continue do so. These can change over time - if you find you really like something, let us know!
Comment deletions. Users may now delete comments that they have made, as well as edit mistakes they may have made initially. If you wish a thread to be deleted, please let us know at forums [at] hhmedia [dot] com
Double Posts. Several people mentioned that it was easy to click twice on the submit button by accident. The post comments button has been fixed to avoid double posts.
Search. The forum search function is now available on all of the main forum pages.
Usernames. There was some confusion about usernames - your unique username is used as your byline in the forums. On your profile, you can choose to display your real name, or a nickname of your choice.
Ad placement. We've reduced the number of ads per page - the old forum used to have upwards of a dozen ads per page, as frequently as one every two posts. Although we can't completely do away with ads, we hope to make them easy to live with, relevant, and even useful at times.
This is an ongoing refinement, and we're committed to keep listening and improving; here's a history so far of what we've changed based on your feedback:
Topic hovering. Many of you expressed an interest in being able to hover over a forum topic and see a sneak preview of the text, and as you'll see we have already implemented that.
Photos. We have fixed this issue so photos should be displaying in all new posts. Please email us forums [at] hhmedia.com if you experience any challenges. Photos will continue to display as links in old posts prior to the forum relaunch, however.
Seeing who's online. As requested, we have reactivated this feature. It is visible at the bottom of the forum main page.
Ad placement. Although we can't do away with these altogether (someone has to pay the bills!), we have moved these down as per your requests.
Accessibility of forum topics. As per some of your requests, we have added topics to the forum drop down menu, in addition to the left text links.
Inappropriate post flagging. A button has been added to clearly flag offensive posts, and we will evaluate and delete as necessary.
Font size and excessive white space. Many of you have mentioned that you find the font too small, so our designer is working on new typography choices that will be easier to read. We hope to introduce those changes within the next week. The default font size for posts (and for the text box when you're composing replies) has been increased already.
Tool bar placement. The toolbar lets you sort your posts the way you want. We are redesigning this so that options are more visible and will be moving it to the top of the page above all of the posts for ease of use.
Post order. We are planning to change the default order from most recent to oldest to mimic the old forums. However, all users will still have the option to choose the order they prefer. We are considering a hyperlink on all posts to allow you to easily go to the original post in a specific thread, as well.
New posts. Along with the font size, white space and tool bar placement, we are also working on a visual solution to make a "new posts" button more visible and easy to access.