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#207865 - 12/09/08 01:58 PM Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Happy Birthday Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5636
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Warning, Warning!

I am evaluating new software for the forums. The new program is from the same people
who created the forums we are using now. However, it has more features and flexibility.

One feature that comes to mind is the ability to create sub-forums.

An example would be ... Top level forum = Composers, below that would be sub-forums
for Chopin, Mozart, Beethoven, etc. (Yes, the famous "Just for those totally devoted to Chopin" thread
could finally have its own home).

And yes, it will bring back the printer friendly feature.

It would also give us the ability to exclude specific features from a basic free membership, allowing
us to charge a small yearly fee for "premium" membership. Don't roll your eyes like that. It's getting
expensive supporting the forums, and Piano World is now my primary job.

The majority of what we offer now would remain free, but instead of relying on a few kind hearted members contributing
to our survival, we could charge a small yearly fee for PREMIUM membership (basic membership would remain free) to cover expenses/overhead, etc.

Take the POLL...
_________________________
- Frank B.
Founder / Host
www.PianoWorld.com
www.PianoSupplies.com
Find Us On:
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My Keyboards:
Estonia L-190, Yamaha P-80, Hammond XK-3, Hammond A-100, Estey 1895 Pump Organ, Harpsichord (kit), Clavichord (kit)
-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
And please invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!
Coming to Maine? We're in Parsonsfield (southwest) let's get together!


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#207866 - 12/09/08 02:45 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 17809
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
Thanks, Frank! I really appreciate the printer-friendly feature and look forward to getting it back. \:\)

p.s. But I would also love a bigger/different selection of smilies, if we're putting together a wish list for Santa... ;\)
_________________________
Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
My YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/pianomonica

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#207867 - 12/09/08 06:46 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
U S A P T Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/20/06
Posts: 1645
Loc: An Indiana University
I think it would be fun to try a new format although I have to say that the other place where people talk about everything BUT pianos is kind of slow.

If you switch will I lose all my stored PMs?
_________________________
Full-Time Music/Entrepreneurship Major: (Why not compose music AND businesses?)
Former Piano Industry Professional
************
Steinway M
Roland Atelier AT90R
************
All Posts are Snarky Unless Otherwise Noted
************

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#207868 - 12/09/08 07:03 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
David-G Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/17/06
Posts: 1244
Loc: London
Please, the most urgent improvement is to sort out (and perhaps simplify) picture uploading!

Good point about the stored PMs.

I hope the whole thing doesn't get too complicated!

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#207869 - 12/09/08 07:08 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
Another feature that would be nice is the ability to store more than 60 PM's. They tend to stack up fast.
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#207870 - 12/09/08 08:20 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
kenny Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 7051
Hey Frank, could we have a forum for non-pianos stuff?
What should we call it?
I know.
We could call it The Coffee Room.

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#207871 - 12/09/08 09:01 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
A spell check would be really appreciated by the orthographically challenged like myself.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#207872 - 12/09/08 09:08 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Rod Verhnjak Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/09/06
Posts: 3659
Loc: Vancouver B.C. Canada
I would like to be able to email pianos to those that want them. (Only in my territory of course)

Can you please add that feature.

Thanks
_________________________
Verhnjak Pianos
Specializing in the Restoration, Refinishing & Maintenance
of Fine Heirloom Pianos

Exclusive Dealer For Charles R. Walter Pianos
www.pianoman.ca
Verhnjak Pianos Facebook


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#207873 - 12/09/08 09:16 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
quiescen Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/24/04
Posts: 215
Loc: San Diego
Hi Frank,

I'm a longtime member and have just recently started posting. I think new forum software is just what this place needs. Many features here are outdated and it's time for an upgrade.

It would be really cool if you could include social networking features too.

-- Edward

P.S. I'd also consider advertising using your small display ads if a new format were adopted.
_________________________
Edward Weiss
Quiescence Music
http://www.quiescencemusic.com

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#207874 - 12/09/08 09:41 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Mark... Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/06
Posts: 4381
Loc: Jersey Shore
 Quote:
Originally posted by -Frycek:
A spell check would be really appreciated by the orthographically challenged like myself. [/b]
Fire Fox has it built in...

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#207875 - 12/09/08 10:09 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
gmf001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/06
Posts: 247
Loc: Uxbridge, ON, Canada
I would like to see a feature where you don't continue to see posts that you've already read, so when you log in you just see the updated/new posts.

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#207876 - 12/09/08 10:50 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Terrytunes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 1249
Loc: Tewksbury MA
I wish we could have the ability to send PM's to multiple members all in one key stroke!

But regardless of how the new forum appears, I plan on hanging around here for as long as time allows. ;\)

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#207877 - 12/10/08 12:12 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
U S A P T Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/20/06
Posts: 1645
Loc: An Indiana University
Yes, like facebook! I am completely addicted to that place. helps though that the median age is 21 except for all my WTF buddies where the median age is 23.
_________________________
Full-Time Music/Entrepreneurship Major: (Why not compose music AND businesses?)
Former Piano Industry Professional
************
Steinway M
Roland Atelier AT90R
************
All Posts are Snarky Unless Otherwise Noted
************

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#207878 - 12/10/08 12:47 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
tanjinjack Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/08
Posts: 851
Loc: Malaysia
How about an auto-refresh feature, and prompt when there's new replies on threads we have read before (not by emails). Gotta use some javascript I guess.

Student rebate for premium membership?

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#207879 - 12/10/08 06:19 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
88Key_PianoPlayer Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/02/02
Posts: 1912
Loc: El Cajon, CA
I could be for forum expansion, etc... just so long as it's not priced too high ($100/year would be way too much for me, but depending on the features (whether or not I'd use them that is) $20-25/year might be swingable), and most importantly, every individual feature / spec / etc that's currently free remains as such.
_________________________
Associate Member - Piano Technicians Guild
1950 (#144211) Baldwin Hamilton
1956 (#167714) Baldwin Hamilton
You can right-click my avatar for an option to view a larger version.

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#207880 - 12/10/08 07:29 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
lilylady Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 4981
Loc: boston north
"It would also give us the ability to exclude specific features from a basic free membership, allowing
us to charge a small yearly fee for "premium" membership. Don't roll your eyes like that. It's getting
expensive supporting the forums, and Piano World is now my primary job.

The majority of what we offer now would remain free, but instead of relying on a few kind hearted members contributing
to our survival, we could charge a small yearly fee for PREMIUM membership (basic membership would remain free) to cover expenses/overhead, etc."

What would the premium members get that the freebie members don't?[/b]
_________________________
"Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."

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#207881 - 12/10/08 11:55 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
piqué Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/15/01
Posts: 5484
i'm not web-savvy enough to imagine what new and improved features might be available to us, but if you could have a "squabble room" where misbehaving miscreants can be sent to hash it out out of eyesight, that might be a big draw for some. ;\)

i like pw the way it is.

i'm sure i'll also like whatever improvements you make, frank.
_________________________
piqué

now in paperback:


Grand Obsession: A Piano Odyssey

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#207882 - 12/10/08 12:01 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
jasperkeys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/22/05
Posts: 411
Loc: Safford, AZ
How about the capability to post the same question on more than one forum with one posting?
_________________________
"I wish there was a way to know you're in the good old days before you've actually left them." Andy Bernard

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#207883 - 12/18/08 07:03 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
tanjinjack Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/08
Posts: 851
Loc: Malaysia
I guess it's still alright to revive this one-week-old thread.

As I read some old threads, learning that some knowledgeable posters have left the forum due to the fact that there's a lot of people posting wrong information and/or promoting self products without identifying themselves.

Therefore, is it possible that a rating system get implemented to each post/reply but only selected (well-respected) members can rate the post as useful/not useful (something like Yahoo! Answer)?

Possibly, a warning and banning system as well?

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#207884 - 12/18/08 08:38 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
AJB Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/05
Posts: 3655
Loc: Surrey, England
I don't mind paying a small fee if there are genuine value added features but I make a personal pleas for the following:

1 Simplify the top of the home page. There is half a screen of boring clutter that one only reads once, if at all.

2 Clear out the stickies regularly. Some of them seem to have been there forever (e.g. the grand adventure piano book one) and it just takes up space for more current posts

3 I agree that spell check is a modern feature that would be nice

4 Make moderators explain why they have closed or deleted threads. Some moderating is rather high handed.

More sub divisions adds no value at all to me. There are already more than enough. More divisions just makes navigation slower. Complexity for the sake of it.


Sorry to learn that Piano World is now your main job. That does not sound like good news.

Incidentally, I think the poll contains leading questions likely to generate the answer you seek. Not a brilliant basis for decision making,

Adrian
_________________________
S&S Hamburg D, Yamaha CLP 280


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#207885 - 12/18/08 09:14 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11808
Loc: Canada
 Quote:
Make moderators explain why they have closed or deleted threads. Some moderating is rather high handed.
I disagree. As a moderator in another busy forum I must have spent 10 hours in the space of only a few days going through the sections I'm responsible for, answering private correspondence related to the same, discussing policies, decisions and cases with other moddies - maybe twice that amount of time since a thing or two "erupted". Moderating is a volunteer job usualy taken on by busy individuals, unpaid, untrained, often thankless and a bit like walking through a minefield aided by a sniffer dog that has a head cold. I assume that moderators have adequate guidelines as well as a support system of the team at large (?) to aid them in their decisions. How much to state in a forum, and how to state it, needs to be up to the mod, but governed by the site's guidelines I think.

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#207886 - 12/18/08 09:59 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
bitWrangler Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1789
Loc: Central TX
 Quote:
Originally posted by keystring:
 Quote:
Make moderators explain why they have closed or deleted threads. Some moderating is rather high handed.
I disagree. As a moderator in another busy forum I must have spent 10 hours in the space of only a few days going through the sections I'm responsible for, answering private correspondence related to the same, discussing policies, decisions and cases with other moddies - maybe twice that amount of time since a thing or two "erupted". Moderating is a volunteer job usualy taken on by busy individuals, unpaid, untrained, often thankless and a bit like walking through a minefield aided by a sniffer dog that has a head cold. I assume that moderators have adequate guidelines as well as a support system of the team at large (?) to aid them in their decisions. How much to state in a forum, and how to state it, needs to be up to the mod, but governed by the site's guidelines I think. [/b]
It wouldn't be hard to place an extra set of radio buttons/check boxes for "reason for locking/closing" that have a small set of values:

- inappropriate content
- user complaints
- violates TOS
- just cuz

and then a text entry field that the mod can optionally add more detail if they'd like.

Clicking one more box wouldn't add substantially to the mods workload and they could expound more if they felt like it.

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#207887 - 12/18/08 10:48 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Piano*Dad Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/12/05
Posts: 10406
Loc: Williamsburg, VA
One thing to keep in mind. Assessing a small user fee likely will diminish the number of participants (law of demand and all that), and the decrease may be substantial. In plain language (hah) the price elasticity of demand may be quite large in the neighborhood of the current price (which is zero, of course).

I don't say this as an argument against the change. I'm agnostic about that. There are good and bad points about shrinking the group of active posters.

Many people use 'nuisance fees' to reduce unwanted traffic. A small user fee here likely would eliminate people who place a low value on actually writing posts. I suspect we'd see a decline in trolling and a fall in the number of immature postings from people who can't resist offering their .02 for free.

We'd also miss some golden nuggets to be sure, and the number of young posters likely would decline. These are people, for instance, who are much less likely to have access to credit cards and check books with which to pay PW fees.

The number of posts would shrink even more if the cost was assessed per post. After all, if the cost is yearly (for instance) once you jump the hurdle the marginal cost of an extra post is again zero.
_________________________
Grotrian 192 #156455

https://www.youtube.com/user/dhfeld/videos

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#207888 - 12/18/08 11:07 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11808
Loc: Canada
[/quote]It wouldn't be hard to place an extra set of radio buttons/check boxes for "reason for locking/closing" that have a small set of values:
[/quote]
Having just gone through that as mod, there are pros and cons. Sometimes check boxes hold some meaning, but it's not the same as an actual reasoned communication. Personally I haven't found it that effective though one can have the impression of having said something.

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#207889 - 12/18/08 11:12 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 17809
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
 Quote:
Originally posted by Piano*Dad:
The number of posts would shrink even more if the cost was assessed per post. [/b]
Please tell me Frank isn't considering charging per POST!?!

Uh-oh.
_________________________
Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
My YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/pianomonica

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#207890 - 12/18/08 11:33 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
we should charge him!
_________________________
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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#207891 - 12/18/08 11:36 PM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
 Quote:
Originally posted by Monica K.:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Piano*Dad:
The number of posts would shrink even more if the cost was assessed per post. [/b]
Please tell me Frank isn't considering charging per POST!?!

Uh-oh. [/b]
Hmmm...11753...you are in trouble.

If PW becomes "by subscription only" I probably have say goodbye.
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#207892 - 12/19/08 12:00 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
currawong Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/15/07
Posts: 5963
Loc: Down Under
I am more than willing to pay, but (*techno-ignoramus-alert*) I don't have the foggiest idea how to do it. You may not believe it, but I've never paid for anything online ...

My other concern is that if the new format has lots of pretty graphics and moving thingies, my dial-up speed (well it's dial-up for about half of each month) won't cope, and consequently neither will I.
_________________________
Du holde Kunst...

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#207893 - 12/19/08 03:00 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
AJB Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/05
Posts: 3655
Loc: Surrey, England
Piano Dad - surely your analysis only applies if subscription becomes compulsory. If Frank intends, as he has said, to maintain a free service running alongside a higher featured subscription one, then he may not see a significant decline?

But it is difficult to see how Frank can generate a significant income stream from this forum as if there is a two tier system, there will have to be significant disbenefits for non fee payers - or few will upgrade to the paid service.

The poll itself is interesting. From a claimed membership of 35,000 or whatever it is, only a couple of hundred have bothered to reply. A good proportion of those say they are willing or might be willing to pay a fee. But a few hundred fee payers will generate peanuts as most will not pay if the dollar value is above a fairly de minimis level.

And Frank will also have the issue of dealing with foreign currencies unless he wishes to turn PW into a US only forum. I volunteered to make a donation years ago, but I have no dollar bank account and my email on the subject, asking how I subscribed, was ignored.

It is perhaps a shame that there is no sponsorship from piano manufacturers. I suppose the brand bashing that goes on here (and all forums) puts them off.

A final thought. I am a member of an active motorcycle forum. It sprang into being because most members belonged to another forum that decided to charge a membership fee before anyone gained posting privileges. The result - a new, free forum, was formed and membership shifted en masse in a matter of a few weeks.

Piano World does look and feel dated and cluttered, and is in need of major rethink and update. I wish Frank success with cosmetic surgery on his baby.
_________________________
S&S Hamburg D, Yamaha CLP 280


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#207894 - 12/19/08 03:16 AM Re: Warning! Warning! - New Forums Software Coming...
schwammerl Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/06
Posts: 2012
Loc: Belgium
 Quote:
Piano World does look and feel dated and cluttered, and is in need of major rethink and update.
Perhaps so but similar forums like the one below, what do they get, one post/week?

http://www.armleg.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=2&mforum=pianosinc

schwammerl.

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