This is going to be a sort-of ongoing post to let you know things that have been changing while I'm fixing everything up.
If you haven't updated your profile since the last time you logged in, I suggest you go. In fact, I would really like it if you all went to update your user profiles. There are new fields for you to enter! Birthdays; favourite books, music, musicals, quotes, and Brick character; and how many times you've seen the musical. Other suggestions of course welcomed.
I would like to encourage you all to put your birthday in. I don't think the year is required; I haven't tested it and there isn't an administrator option to decide what is/isn't optional for that field. But the forum will tell us if it is your birthday and I, at least, like to wish people happy birthday -- my lj friends may have noticed it (although I've been lax at that lately!).
Actually I would encourage you to fill out your profile as completely as possible. I think it's just more fun that way.
As always, let me know if something is weird about the new profile fields, so I can (attempt to) fix it.
There are six available styles for the forum. The current default is called Revolution. You can browse through them and see which one you prefer. I have two or three more on my hard drive that I may install later, but for now I'm happy with six.
If you see something weird on one of the styles you're using, please take a screen cap. On a PC, press the Prt-Sc button on the top right corner of your keyboard, and copy the resultant capture into a image-editing program like paint or photoshop, so I can see what it is and where to find it and possibly figure out how to fix it.
If you don't like ANY of the styles and have a suggestion for something else you'd like to see (different colour combination or something), do me a favour and visit the phpBB Styles page, and browse through them until you find one you DO like enough to use.
Obviously there are new forums and subforums on the board. As I haven't had the time or inclination to read through EVERY topic created over the past three years, I may have moved topics to the wrong forums. If anything doesn't seem to fit, go right ahead and PM me the topic so I can revisit it.
Everybody should have full access to create new topics/polls and reply to existing topics, except the Important Information board. Only Admin/mods have permission to create new topics here, because this is basically the forum rules and information board and none of you really need to be in here except to read.
And that brings me to my next point. I don't know yet if I want or need moderators right now, but the time will come. More than likely what I will do is, rather than name some global moderators who have full access to moderate the entire forum, I'm going to name several people to be forum moderators: in charge of one or two specific forums but not any of the others. The expectations would be that the forum moderator reads all the posts in said forum to make sure they're compliant with the forum rules, and that they're not spam. Not difficult but sometimes I have no interest in reading all the posts in some threads, so keep that in mind.
I'm not interested in a mod right now, though, just because I still need to sort this place out some more.
Extras and goodies
I'm still planning to implement the system whereby donors to the Operating Fund will get somethiny shiny in return. However, since my forum is paid through the end of the year right now, I'm going to postpone it for a few weeks. I also want to decide if I want to get a new host. (Likely not, but I'm a little upset with mine right now.)
When I do, the system will look pretty much as follows:
-Donation can be however much you want starting at USD$1. Donation will be done via PayPal, and is kindly requested in dollars rather than euros (you can specify the currency on the actual screen where payment is made). Not that I have anything against foreign currency, it's just that it makes everything more even on my side, especially considering how the value of each country's currency compares to the USD. A Donate button will be set up in a special little spot on the board.
-When you make a donation, know that it will only be used to pay the webhosting bill. I'm not going to go shopping on your money.
-When you make a donation, please be sure to include your e-mail address and your forum name. I like to keep a running tally of people who are so kind. I ALSO will need it to send you your goodies.
-You will receive a subdomain here at the-barricade as well as an e-mail @the-barricade as thanks for your donation.
-You can choose whether or not to flaunt your shiny new acquisitions on the board however you like. As you indicated prior to the move, none of you want to be openly recognised as a donor, so I won't be publicly admitting who does/doesn't, but hey, add your new website to your profile and let others be jealous.
More information about the goodies will of course be released in the actual donation post when it is ready.
I floated this idea before as with the karma points, and I just don't have the mental energy to actually modify the code to the board. However, the software has a built-in ranking system if I choose to utilise it.
Looking for member input on this. Rankings:
Do you care one way or another?
Do you want post count to determine the rankings? (if so what should we call the rankings?)
Do you want to be able to add a custom ranking for yourself (likely if certain criteria are met; possibly as an extra donation incentive -- i.e., donate and receive the ability to give yourself a rank.
You know, such as "Chief Caregiver for Jehan's lobster" or somesuch. )?
Do you have another idea?
Going to set up a discussion post for this in a bit! I just thought I'd add it to the big summary post of new happenings and plans so you could all see it.
More information to come in the next round of changes! Stay tuned!
Your Benevolent Dictator