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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 66 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Proposed major change to the Forge  (Read 16730 times)
rafial
Member

Posts: 594


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« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2006, 08:45:15 AM »

I've found PM to be a good way to ask for someones private email address in the first place, as many people are understandably reluctant to post their email addresses in archived public forums, where they can be harvested by spam bots for the rest of eternity.  So if PM as a general thing is shut down, it would be nice if there was an equivalent "handshake" mechanism by which you could request someone elses contact info.
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Nathan P.
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Posts: 536


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« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2006, 09:34:21 AM »

Ditto rafial. The only thing that PM offers me that I couldn't do equally well over email is allowing me to request for others email addresses in the first place.
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Nathan P.
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Find Annalise
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My Games | ndp design
Also | carry. a game about war.
I think Design Matters
Emily Care
Member

Posts: 1126


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« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2006, 09:42:09 AM »

I've found the Forge p.m. an excellent way to contact people whose emails I couldn't track down & others have used it in the same way for me. Over the last year I've actually had a lot of business and con related conversations via pm here which has been incredibly positive for me, but all of those convos could have taken place by email. 

Over the years, I've been glad to have the pm channel to send little "right on" emails to people that would have been seen as static on a main thread, but I'm not married to it. Thanks for making it available all this time, Clinton.

best,
Em
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Koti ei ole koti ilman saunaa.

Black & Green Games
Halzebier
Member

Posts: 216


« Reply #18 on: July 31, 2006, 09:43:03 AM »

As long as there's an easy way to contact the admins - to ask about something, to apologize without cluttering up the threads, to report a problem etc. - I think we're golden without PMs. It's easy to contact Clinton or Ron via email and they are clearly marked as admins, so newbies shouldn't have any trouble.

Regards,

Hal
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Arturo G.
Member

Posts: 333


« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2006, 10:01:47 AM »


As other people has commented previously I have found the PM convenient for contacting people and getting eMail addresses. Rafial's idea about "handshake" sounds pretty well.

Arturo
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David "Czar Fnord" Artman
Member

Posts: 246


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« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2006, 10:17:18 AM »

I do not belive my personal PM experiences are in any way (a) significant enough to impact your decision as moderator or (b) positive enough at The Forge for me to miss them (I guess I'm one of the U-Boat victims, here).

Kill them... I have in every forum I operate.
PM is pointless, with free e-mail accounts that hold 1GB of plain text indefinitely.
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Lance D. Allen
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Posts: 1962


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« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2006, 10:56:31 AM »

My main concern with the PMs has already been addressed; I don't want my archived messages deleted, at the very least without plenty of warning, so I can save their contents myself. Although it doesn't seem like it, I'm still an active reader here, and I'm still working at my snail's pace on my games. In my PM folder, there's a lot of groundwork level discussion about all of my projects, and I refer to it semi-frequently.

I don't know that I've had any bad experiences, and I hope I've not perpetrated any of these U-Boat PMs. I'd prefer to still have access to sending PMs, but I can't think of any particular alternatives, and wouldn't be heart-broken if they went away. I don't really like these forums format for PMs anyhow. If these bad things are happening though, there's really not anything that can be done about it. They'll continue in e-mail, but they won't have any sort of "official"-ness that PMs might imply, and they'll not take up Forge bandwidth and storage space, which I imagine is at least part of the problem.

Rafial brought up the only really important point though. I'd thought that phpbb had a secure way to e-mail, but upon checking, it displays the email in the bottom line of the browser.. So if there is a way for these forums to allow e-mailing without exposing the e-mail address, that would solve the one big problem.
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~Lance Allen
Wolves Den Publishing
Eternally Incipient Publisher of Mage Blade, ReCoil and Rats in the Walls
GreatWolf
Member

Posts: 1155

designer of Dirty Secrets


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« Reply #22 on: July 31, 2006, 11:00:29 AM »

Blah blah blah no bad PM experiences blah would like other "handshake" mechanism of some kind.

Seriously, all discourse that I've had via PM could have been done via email, so long as I had a way of getting the other person's email address or they had a way of getting mine.  If, for example, instead of the PM button, there were a "ping user" function that would send a brief automated message to the email that the user has on file, including my email address, that would be fine.

I also know enough about computers to know that this isn't necessarily as easy as it looks on paper, so please read this idea as including the requisite amount of humility and appreciation for the work that has already been done.

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Seth Ben-Ezra
Dark Omen Games
producing Legends of Alyria, Dirty Secrets, A Flower for Mara
coming soon: Showdown
Sydney Freedberg
Member

Posts: 1293


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« Reply #23 on: July 31, 2006, 11:23:41 AM »

Echoing everyone else, here:

1) No bad PM experiences until the porn spam this morning (ick).
2) A lot clumsier than just using email.
3) A "handshake" to avoid making your email public would be nice and nifty, but by no means essential. (I used to be nervous about making my email publicly available, but my company has put it on every article I write for years, and I have yet to be spammed or stalked as a result).

Plus, as I posted on Vincent Baker's site back when the GNS forum was put out of its misery, "I trust Ron. He's earned it." (I trust Clinton too, yeah, but the baby frogs always go for Ron for whatever reason).
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JMendes
Member

Posts: 379


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« Reply #24 on: July 31, 2006, 12:50:18 PM »

Ahey, :)

I'd like to offer a suggestion, if I may.

Replace the 'Send PM' button with a 'Send My Email To This User' button. When pressed, this button would have the Forge send an email to the user with an appropriately formated 'Reply To:', with a short text of 'The user {Forge User Name Here} would like to contact you via email'. The user name could be a link to the Forge user profile page of the button presser.

Advantages:
1. This cannot possibly be confused with moderator function
2. It still permits usages of 'PM me if you want this file'
3. It still assures privacy, as your email goes out only to those that you want it to go out to
4. At first sight, it seems utterly valueless for spam usage (although I'm sure spam bot writers more creative than I would eventually prove me wrong...)
5. Seems easy enough to do in PHP, although I'm not all that familiar with the innards of SMF...

Thoughts?

Cheers,
J.
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LordSmerf
Member

Posts: 864


« Reply #25 on: July 31, 2006, 01:36:55 PM »

One thing I have found PMs useful for is that they are an extremely reliable way to reach me.  Every so often a new person emailing me will get lost in one of my spam filters.  This is, clearly, a bad thing.  Since I have email notification of Forge PMs, and they don't get caught by my spam filter, anyone who sends me a PM can be sure that I will see it.

But it turns out that there's a solution to this, and a pretty simple one.

Since every user has to have a functioning email account to sign up, there should be an email address for every user (right?).  You could replace the PM function with an email function.  One that takes whatever text you are wanting to input from an HTML field and then sends it through the Forge message server (or something) with the return address of the sender.

This lets you A) bypass spam filters (as long as you're getting emails from the Forge), B) Move the PM function to email, C) Keep email addresses private, and D) Ensure that you only give out your email to someone who you are interested in talking to.

Thomas
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Sydney Freedberg
Member

Posts: 1293


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« Reply #26 on: July 31, 2006, 02:11:40 PM »

All that sounds groovy if Clinton can actually implement it without breaking his back and/or brain, but this whole conversation inspired me to "unhide" my email on my Forge profile, so as far as I'm concerned PM just became obsolete.
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Mark Woodhouse
Member

Posts: 121


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« Reply #27 on: July 31, 2006, 02:26:30 PM »

I keep thinking of stuff I use (or can imagine using) PMs for, and why I might miss them, and every single last one of them, the real truth is that it's basically me freeloading off of the Forge for something I could do with a dedicated e-mail address and a little effort.

One thing did jump out at me, though. It might not be entirely cool for StoryGames to suddenly become "the Forge's backyard" to any greater extent than it already is. We should all take responsibility for being good citizens of both those communities.
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timfire
Member

Posts: 756


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« Reply #28 on: July 31, 2006, 02:40:21 PM »

Positive
PM lets me contact people without their knowing their email.  When I was new, I didn't like giving my email out. I still don't, except that after I started my Timfire Publishing, I purposely set up an email account to handle public stuff. Not everyone here has made their email address public, so PM is still useful for contacting people.

Negative
I've received spam a couple times, but only a couple times over the last 3 years.

If you wanted to get rid of PM, you would need to have some way to "ping" people here at the Forge at their real email address. But will that really get rid of the "U-boat" issues? People will just U-boat each other via their real email. And if people start disabling access to their email, you might up with a bunch of "Paging so-and-so" threads.
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--Timothy Walters Kleinert
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
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Posts: 16490


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« Reply #29 on: July 31, 2006, 03:01:43 PM »

Hi there,

Great responses, so far. Here are some ideas I'm coming to prefer.

1. "Send email" as a button. I was under the impression that such a thing existed, but maybe that was with the previous software. You didn't have know the person's email and you didn't find out what it was; as I recall, the Forge sent your message to them with your email included, so they could reply.

2. Regarding the U-boat thing, if people do it by email, at least they're doing it individually and the effect is literally not part of the Forge itself. It's a very serious turf thing - by getting a rough PM here, when you're a newcomer, you're still on the other guy's turf. If he emails you, he has to come to your turf. I think that will psychologically cancel most of the U-boating, although again, it's not the phenomenon that bugs me the most, it's the fact that it's associated with "the Forge" as a feature of the site.

Best, Ron
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