Site Suggestions and Improvements - Page 2 - ClubTread Community

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post #16 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by VSadmin View Post
this is something we can look into. ill check with jeff as well to see if we can do some better formatting there.

~Shane
Thanks Shane. If this is possible I would suggest that prototypes be tested among the more senior long term members of CT to ensure that any change is embraced and positive. At the very least the moderators, Dru, KARVITK and Rachelo, might be asked to kick the tires on any changes ahead of release.
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post #17 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 03:08 PM
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Another suggestion:

When replying to a private message from another user, once you submit your reply, I can't find a way to see what I sent/wrote? It would be nice to be able to view sent messages. Or am I missing something?
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post #18 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 03:22 PM
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When replying to a private message from another user, once you submit your reply, I can't find a way to see what I sent/wrote? It would be nice to be able to view sent messages. Or am I missing something?
Options -> Private Messaging -> Save copy of sent messages in my sent Items folder
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post #19 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 03:32 PM
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It is really promising that owners are willing to look seriously into issues. But it is 2 step process: First you fix/improve the product, second you work on marketing --i.e. user base-- which is harder.

Re UI changes, I'd suggest not to go overboard. Small incremental is better approach, and yes privately run changes through senior users or mods for feedback. But before anything else I'd look into photo upload process as this seems to be huge issue for many. Also, even when things are "fixed" it is nice to keep adding small bells and whistles -- i.e. on-going "photo of the month" or "report of the month", etc. But this comes later.
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post #20 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 03:34 PM
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It seems to me that search function is not working properly on the web site. For instance, when I tried to find my old post Around Garibaldi Lake in three days using the search button I did not see my post on the first page of search results. When I did the same search in Google, the second top link returned was mine.
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post #21 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 03:52 PM
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But before anything else I'd look into photo upload process as this seems to be huge issue .
completely agree... The process works for some of us although it is relatively clunky compared to a smooth interface. However it is overwhelmingly an irritant for so many users that it really must 1st take priority

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post #22 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 08:00 PM
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Yes, "your query site:clubtread.com" returns far more relevant results than the site platform search function. True of many sites, though.

I find the regional discussion topics of interest, even more than trip reports.

Trail wikies have great potential, needs a lot of input from the users though.

Finally, I'm disturbed by the data breach greatly, and far less sure I want to stick around this new corporate clubtread! Sorry, but that was very careless, and speaks volumes.
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post #23 of (permalink) Old 07-19-2016, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by alexcanuck View Post
Yes, "your query site:clubtread.com" returns far more relevant results than the site platform search function. True of many sites, though.

Finally, I'm disturbed by the data breach greatly, and far less sure I want to stick around this new corporate clubtread! Sorry, but that was very careless, and speaks volumes.
Yeah, using an external search engine with site specific designation is the best way to query most sites. I've always done it that way.

Hope you don't leave. Losing members who've been around for some time is such a loss. As for the data breach, perhaps consider first using some obfuscation code, like Trusteer Rapport and ALWAYS on top of a good, reputable VPN. There are many available, some free/cheap some not. I use Witopia over IPSec protocol or my company VPN both of which establish rock tight tunnels (and are very easy to install/use). A good VPN should be on everyone's computer/pad/laptop, especially if you use wi-fi in coffee shops, hotels, campgrounds etc. even as a layer on top of online banking https://, which actually only secures that single connection, leaving the rest of browser, and its open tabs wide exposed.

I seem to recall I always used a VPN even on the old ClubTread, mostly as a matter of security discipline but as I recall old CT was unsecured too (ie. non https://) If I'm wrong, please, somebody correct me on that.

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post #24 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 03:36 AM
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Originally Posted by alexcanuck View Post
Yes, "your query site:clubtread.com" returns far more relevant results than the site platform search function. True of many sites, though.

I find the regional discussion topics of interest, even more than trip reports.

Trail wikies have great potential, needs a lot of input from the users though.

Finally, I'm disturbed by the data breach greatly, and far less sure I want to stick around this new corporate clubtread! Sorry, but that was very careless, and speaks volumes.
A data breach is never good. To put it in perspective though a number of major companies have suffered breaches (LinkedIn, Adobe, Canadian Government.) I wouldn't even be surprised if other companies that are as small as the one that now owns ClubTread have breaches and don't even disclose them. These guys seem to be doing their best to make people aware. The best strategy is unique strong passwords for each site and multi-factor authentication on e-mail. Using multiple e-mail addresses can also be good (e.g. one for your bank and other important stuff, and another for social media sites.)
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post #25 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 04:19 AM
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If I were you, I'd do the following:

1) Temporarily get rid of the ads. I can't imagine you are making that much off of them right now and your short term focus should be on increasing user growth to ensure the long term viability of the site. At the very least, tone them down a little.

2) Do a few other things to give the site a clean/modern look. Can you find a full width panorama image?

3) Fix the annoyances (wiki issues, photo upload, etc.)

4) Give a little love to a few of the other pages. E.g. the home page is silly. https://www.clubtread.com/
The copyright at the bottom is 2001-2008 and it's still in the name of TallTech Systems Inc. It hasn't been updated in years. Anyone from the internet who lands at ClubTread and a few of the other alternatives may assume that this site is on the way out (based on the visual appearance,) and go elsewhere.
If you want users to invest in putting their trip reports here, you need to also invest some time.

5) Do a bit of promotion. Look at trip reports that are getting a lot of views and see if the author wants to turn it into a highlighted trip report which might be posted on the homepage in a better format and potentially co-posted on a blog like the Daily Hive. I could also imagine someone on this forum writing a monthly post (based on all of the observations in the trip reports) to give a bit of a summary on trail conditions (e.g. the snowline in June is around XX) and I could see that getting shared more broadly.

6) Improve the SEO. One simple thing that could be done is to go through the trail wiki and provide links to one or more trip reports for the popular trails.




Something we can all do is comment more on eachother's posts. Let's be honest - if you put in the time to write a trip report and it only get 1 or 2 responses, you may question the value in what you are doing. I think that if it weren't for KARVITK, a lot of users might have left a long time ago. That guy is amazing. His trip reports have been valuable but he has also made sure that no TR ever goes with zero responses.
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post #26 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 10:39 AM
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I've been wondering for a few days if I should post something here or not and here is my 2 cents worth.

As a long term member of CT - joined in 2008, I can agree to seeing many changes over the years. In the past this was the place I made many new friends and ended up doing things and going places I never dreamed of or expected to! i.e.: got into night hiking, winter hiking, backpacking, winter backpacking, scrambling, indoor climbing, outdoor climbing, even paragliding! These are all things that came about because of people on this site writing reports and/or encouraging me. I also gained a new respect and understanding for SAR (all teams, not just the N. Shore!), etc.

I know that over the years, Facebook came out. I was a late joiner to that (thank God as it seems like Facebook is something that is hard to live without once you join due to the "missing out" factor). Many of us from CT connected on there and it's been good but as Simonc said, it's not the same.

So... I never wanted to stop writing trip reports but do admit to becoming more lazy in writing them. When I started CT all I wanted to do was post reports and comments (probably because I was so proud of myself back then - hey everybody, I did my first solo hike up Elk and I lived to tell about it!) ha and everyone here was always so encouraging. Then I started doing group hikes thanks to Karl and Kelly Legros and would let others write the reports instead.

Now when I write a report I get nothing but issues posting photos! It has been extremely frustrating and on my last report Karl V actually went in and posted my photos for me! (Mt. Pilchuck, WA.). I have tried to figure this out for myself by writing reports using Safari, Firefox, uploading less pictures, etc. but for me I always get the same message about not being able to post photos because some blasted security token is missing... well what is it? and what's the point of posting a trip report without pictures? I've been here trying to persevere... I'm pretty loyal! but I admit to becoming fed up.

As to others commenting on my trip reports, I don't really care about that (personally). I write trip reports to add to my personal profile and/or for others to gather information if they'd like to.

So that's my two cents worth. I've changed my password and thankfully have had no problem with that. Old password doesn't work. New one does.

If I could ask for one change on CT, it would be to have the image uploader problem fixed!

Cheers to all.
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post #27 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 11:51 AM
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When I paste pictures from google.photos using copy image location function, I have to each time manually define the size of the photos as 600 width 800 height. I was wondering if you could set a default setting for photo upload, e.g. 600 width 800 height to facilitate. And dragging photo files options is not working for me - I can drag the files, but they do not get uploaded! The need for manual adjustment of the photo size + Google restrictions on re-sharing photo content from google.photos has made photo upload to this site a royal PITA for me to be honest, which is why I have not posted here for while. Going forward I am thinking of posting 1-2 photos and a link to my own site with photos, as I just can't keep reposting image links and adjusting their size several times here before they finally become visible to everyone (thumb down to Google).

Last edited by Lenagen; 07-20-2016 at 11:57 AM.
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post #28 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Kanike View Post

Now when I write a report I get nothing but issues posting photos! It has been extremely frustrating and on my last report Karl V actually went in and posted my photos for me! (Mt. Pilchuck, WA.). I have tried to figure this out for myself by writing reports using Safari, Firefox, uploading less pictures, etc. but for me I always get the same message about not being able to post photos because some blasted security token is missing... well what is it? and what's the point of posting a trip report without pictures? I've been here trying to persevere... I'm pretty loyal! but I admit to becoming fed up.
Well said Kanike. let's hope for improvement that will hold you to CT

truth be told, it takes a bit of bit geekiness to be happy with a) copy/paste of an image address then b) insert [img] [/img] then c) minus the ampersand and 'thumbs' text to display pics insitu frame type, all on top of making sure the image dimensions and disk size are not violated. A few of us are geeks that way but most are not and why should anyone have to put up with that?

CT really should have a straight ahead drag+drop of images, with automatic resizing to fit dimension and /or size requirements. That's why Facebook is easy, because you don't have to care about the dimensions/size of your image or monkeying around with xml elements and image addresses, it just forces your dragged picture through a compliance checker and does it for you.

This stuff is not hard to code.

So let it be written, so let it be done
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post #29 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 01:48 PM
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Steventy sad everything; that post can probably be used as blueprint for action

In retrospect you have 2 things that are causing the situation:

1) Takeover - ownership change. People don't like changes, and people don't like corporations. But there is no way back, so new system has to be better or at minimum have same functionality. However things, as discussed above, are either missing or have awkward interface (Just read with horror that Kanike had to ask Karvitk to upload photos for her; that should not be happening, period, even if it is likely an isolated case).

2) Things are stagnant; no single change was introduced since the takeover. Successful site constantly works on improvements, adds new bells/whistles and monitors the competition. Alberta side is your indicator as it always had fewer users so aftershocks are felt more clearly than on BC side. When I see 50+ posts on facebook after the weekend and none here, that says just about everything (and yes, long-time CT posters that stopped coming to CT happily post on FB).

But CT is still CT, excellent resource and for many part of lifestyle where new friends are made. Just this thread with many inputs is good sign; people still care. So things can be good again, and better. You just have to work on it.
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post #30 of (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 04:05 PM
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I haven't been posting long, so I can't say much about how posting/pictures have changed recently, but I have searched it for trip reports and I have been posting TR's over on Livetrails.com for the past year so I can speak when comparing with that site. As far as searchability, I would echo what others have said, its hard to find all TR's for a given trail, and I think this is in large part due to lack of consistency of TR format and titles; I like Livetrails with respect to this as every TR gets linked to a particular trail that is in the database and any user can add a new trail if it is not already in the database. It also has a map segment (as do the main trail sites in Washington and Oregon), where it is easy to scroll around to different regions/locations and click on trails that you are interested in. I also like that it is easy to add a GPS track and photos to each TR on Livetrails, as you can easily add from Facebook, Flickr, youtube or other online picture/video site accounts, or upload from your computer. That being said, that site is limited primarily to TR's while clubtread has many more useful discussions about a variety of topics, and there is a much broader information base on clubtread through previous postings, trail wiki's, and the current active user base. I think it may be useful for the IT department to look into adding similar features that other sites currently offer. Hope that adds some value to the conversation.
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