I received my STHT mag this week, and on P.16 there is a short article about the new web site, which is due to be launched in January.
Nowhere in the article does it mention a feature of the forum which members have been crying out for as long as I can recall - the ability for the web site to store photos without having to resort to using third-party sites.
I find it hard to understand why the powers that be have gone to all the trouble and (presumably) expense of producing this long-overdue re-vamp of the web site, without including the facility that we have been asking for for years. If this facility is indeed included in the new web site, then surely it would have been a good idea to trumpet it from the rooftops.
I look forward to hearing some response !
Hear Hear, Chris
Have you used Post Image?
I find it very easy to use and at the moment works really well. Of course that does not mean it will not go all Photoshop on us next week.
I think the possible problem here is the overhead of storing large amounts of image material. Images use much more storage space than text and the cost overhead could be high.
Forum change is part of the ongoing works. Its been noted on here before that work is going on.
The work has been from the ground up which starts with the membership database on which the forum is reliant.
Martin is that a yes or no for being able to upload images to the MX5oc website rather than use a photo hosting site.
For the absence of doubt, I think that there is no need at all for photo storage as other sites that provide this but you need to answer yes or no.
Fair point by Eddie regarding the future posting photos arrangements and it does need a yes or no answer Martin.
This forum is my main interaction with and reason for membership of the club. I suspect this is so for many people. I prefer using this forum to Facebook but Facebook is so easy when it comes to posting and in particular adding photos and video. While the OC group on Facebook is very active there are many more active MX-5 groups. I’m increasingly using these instead of the forum.
If improvements aren’t made soon the steady trickle of people defecting from the OC to Facebook could turn into a deluge. How many High Street stores have failed recently with one of the main reasons being that they didn’t have the right online presence early enough?
You can upload pictures to this site, many do.
I am reasonably internet savvy and can add pictures to posts on this forum but it isn’t easy. For many it is very difficult. Being slightly pedantic it isn’t possible to upload photos. All one can do is link to photos which have been uploaded to other hosting sites. If I upload a photo to one of these sites I then need to maintain this uploaded photo or it will disappear from the post on this site.
I’m aware that Facebook are monetarising my data which is why I allow them access to as little personal data as possible. I’m also aware that I can use this forum freely without being a member. I just think it’s fair that I pay my membership fees to support the club and the forum. My point is that if it wasn’t for the forum I probably wouldn’t renew my membership.
This forum should be easy to use and a great advertisement for the club. MX-5 owners should discover the forum, find it useful, and stay. They will then be far more likely to join the club. If they find it a pain to use and have to ask questions and then jump through hoops to do what should be easy then they will desert to social media and they are lost for good.
I’ve worked in IT for 25 years and still find it a pain trying to add images here. It’s tedious especially on a phone.
Happily pay £1 a year more for them to buy more space.
Key highlight “ Direct photo upload will be supported”
Being a total techno-phobe this post sums up how I feel too! Unfortunately a certain OC member has a very “superior” attitude and a tendency to “talk down” to people, which is very unhelpful and annoying!
Having a file attached not inline is sooo 1996 lol.
Heading over to alt.mx5 now
thank you Ramsay…
I didn’t say unhelpful or annoying. I said unwelcoming. I was referring to the suggestion that anyone who couldn’t upload a photo shouldn’t be commenting on how the forum was run.
The vast majority of users on this forum try to help others whenever they can. I’m very aware that you Saz have helped more than your fair share and are one of the most knowledgeable people on here.
Good to hear that direct uploads of pictures is in the pipeline. That will make this forum an even better place to be but I’ll say this again. We all need to be welcoming.
I’m sure most of the people reading this thread will know who I’m talking about when I say we recently lost one of the most knowledgeable and active members of the forum. We need to be doing everything we can to encourage new blood otherwise, will the last person leaving the forum turn off the lights.
I have never understood why getting rid of useing a third party image host as taken so long, and is one of the issues i found really frustrating about trying to use this board, it is to faffy and not straight forward to use, pics are a major big thing in the way i help fellow owners and this board made it difficult to carry on helping and i mentioned this when this board was first made live, i was not listened to, and for a number of reasons we set up menders tech, it is not that difficult to sort these issues, it is all down to whether they could be ar*ed to, this lay out as alway been crap to use, one of the major points i needed on menders was a quick easier way to add pics, it did not take long to find and add it to the program, we acn attach from anything, we can drag and drop from what ever, makes the whole process far easier and less hassle.
There are a good few other things that would make useing this board so much more pleasant and easier, which are easy things to do, it is all down to whether they listen , and from experience they don’t or very selective , i have always said , look at the clubs title, it says OWNERS, thats what you are here for and their needs as a club they pay into.
Now running a forum can be hard work, i know this and you are for ever hitting problems, that needs to be solved, which you do and sort the next one when it hits , and this will be a nightmare incorporating the membership program side , and my hat goes off to the people dealing with gelling it all together to work, but once all the hard work is done it just becomes a matter of adding or deleting software to suit the needs and just keep an eye on it as it runs itself.
Now as for the headache which is two face book that causes more problems than it solves and the rest of online media, forums will be the hassle place to go as people have become lazy to use them and like the selfish “quick fix” and in most cases it is about me me me attention, the others offer at the minute, but people are getting fed up with the mindless hate faceless platforms and the forums are on the raise again because there are less C*ck wombles and " have a go heros that are looking for good honest solid locking in help for dedicated passionate people.
This board will always be what is unless they listen to its owners, because they are the user and it needs to suit their needs.
Drive safe and have a great day, lets go and change the future…
I can explain that a bit. The site as it is today was built by myself ~2012. A lot has changed in the IT world since then, so we need to cast our minds back a bit. The site refresh followed shortly after a server move, where our disk capacity increased by (if I remember correctly) around 10x. I believe that we have around 1TB of data storage (and around 50GB of system storage) in our current setup.
1TB sounds like a lot, and it is, until you start using it. If you assume that you want at least one (ideally multiple) on-disk backups of everything, that 1TB instantly halves (because you need twice the space). Now, ok, you can compress your backups, etc. but the principle still stands. On-disk backups obviously aren’t enough; you need them stored in another location (preferably multiple locations) and that then means you require other servers, keeping in mind that options like AWS, Azure, etc. didn’t really exist at the time.
And then keep in mind that the club has 6,000+ members, many orders more forum members, etc. and you soon realise that if people are wanting to upload relatively high quality images the cost associated with doing so potentially becomes very high.
You’ve then got other issues; what happens if people start uploading illicit images? How would we monitor and protect against that? Keep in mind that it would be quite easy to upload an image but not have it visible (e.g. by editing posts afterwards, or sizing them to not be visible).
All things considered the cost and risk was too high relative to the benefit. At the time there were dozens of free and simple to use image hosting services available, and being able to drag & drop a hosted image into the content editor was functionality that most other forums at the time lacked.
Of course, time has moved on since then. Storage is not only many orders of magnitude cheaper, but infinitely more scalable thanks to things like AWS S3, and secure/responsible backups of data stored in these systems is easier than it has ever been. If the new site hadn’t been in the pipeline, and/or if I had more time to make the change myself, this feature would almost certainly have been added by now.
We’d still have the issue of how we protect against abuse – nobody would want the club to become part of a child-porn distribution network – but even then I think that problem is far more solvable today than it was 8 years ago, either through automation or simpler auditing practices.