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FORUM VOTE: WIP Forums

How would you like WIP threads to be handled?  

19 members have voted

  1. 1. Would you like one WIP forum or a separate forum for each major genre?

    • Single WIP thread
      6
    • WIP threads split among ships, automotive, aircraft, etc.
      9
    • Keep as is. Because.
      4


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Plus, we're all looking at time for the workbench!

R/

Robert

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That being said, our IPMS-related threads are still the busiest. Can you imagine if members would copy/paste one or two builds to the boards in the time it took to post in OOB? We'd be banging! :unsure:

 

Hey, I'm tryin' man! :smiley29::blush::smiley2::smiley8:

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More traffic is everyone's goal, no matter if it's this forum or business sites. Whether creating genre specific WIP forums would do it for us is questionable at the very least. If you recall, there was a thread somewhere that addressed the question of creating a digital version of the Journal, along with putting all the old Quarterlys online. What came out of that was the fact that there are a significant number of members who don't have computers or are simply not interested in the digital format. Is this a factor of the age of many members or simply preferring to spend their time building as opposed to being on line? Probably a combination of both, though the only way to sort that one out would be to know the age demographics of the membership. Even then, it would take a survey to find out if each member preferred to spend their available time building or were willing to devote some it to being online and participating in forums. In my case, age isn't a factor...but then again, I've been using computers and Photoshop for many years as an integral part of my freelance writing & modelbuilding business. As a result of that, maybe I'm not the best one to offer an opinion on this.

 

One thing that could well increase forum participation is direct uploading of photos instead of having to use a cloud-based service such as photobucket. Robert brought this subject up and Chris, you stated that most forums you're a member of do have that ability. Like Robert, I don't use cloud-based photo services. Pity, too, that these forums don't allow for direct uploading since I could post photos of various models I produce for clients and magazine articles. Where the direct uploading would really help would be the WIP forum(s).

 

If nothing else, I can always come up with an opinion. Take it for what it's worth. Or not.

 

Richard

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I believe the issue with photo uploads to an IPMS web space is cost. Even Photobucket, PogoPlug, and other "free" storage spaces have a cost. There is the inevitable advertising that one receives when one accepts the use of "free" space, but that isn't much of a price to pay for some storage space. If you want more than the minimum space provided to a free account then you start shelling out money. For IPMS to acquire storage space from our current website provider might be prohibitively expense for what "good" comes from it. It is more reasonable, and more responsible, I submit, for an individual member to acquire some free cloud storage and then provide a link to that storage space in their posts on the forum rather than having IPMS lay out money to achieve the same thing. It is also an easy thing for even a novice internet jockey to get an account with services like Photobucket and PogoPlug.

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And the cost for IPMS to host some member photos should not be borne by all the members, particularly when there are a number by options from the free photo-hosting sites, the webspace provided by some ISPs with an email account, to simply purchasing your own for a small amount compared to hobby expenses.

 

I suggest we would not increase participation, just sign-ups by folks who wanted to use their space here to host photos elsewhere.

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And the cost for IPMS to host some member photos should not be borne by all the members, particularly when there are a number by options from the free photo-hosting sites, the webspace provided by some ISPs with an email account, to simply purchasing your own for a small amount compared to hobby expenses.

 

I suggest we would not increase participation, just sign-ups by folks who wanted to use their space here to host photos elsewhere.

 

Could someone (Eric A?) tell us the actual cost of hosting images? From looking at the A2 hosting page (I think that's who hosts this forum), if I'm reading it right 100Gb of disk storage costs about $40 a month. That's about 2,000,000 web-quality images. I'm guessing we could also impose limits on users to keep individuals from abusing the storage (which they can get for free on Facebook).

 

All of the expenses of IPMS - the Journal, Make-n-Take, insurance, etc - are borne by all of the members, whether we think those expenditures are a good idea or make use of the benefit provided. Do we really have a chance of competing with Facebook/Google+/etc. if we make it hard for people to post pictures on our site when its free and simple on the others? To paraphrase, we have to pay to play...

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It sounds as if there is some confusion between hosting 'gallery' images, and inserted images in posts (as different from "linking" 'em to external hosts.) You can't abuse the 'storage' in a post since the images must mesh with the content of the topic or risk 'moderation'. The main problem with relying on external image support in forum topics (as we've all seen - the little 'this has been removed' square) is retention of the images is at the mercy of that external host. It all comes down to the expectations for the integrity of the forum archives. Putting an image directly into a post impacts the storage requirements of the forum directories but also ensures the image will be available down the road (unless purged locally.) An alternative would be to link the user's post images to their forum account, visible if desired in a gallery format, so any images from a user could actually be reviewed (but not directly added to), or linked from, as a 'gallery'. Also, it would behoove us to ensure that forum 'quote' functionality would not also 'grab' previously posted images, unless via linkage.

 

One more thought on topic: Much of the WIP type work in our club often ends up on the club website, not here. Any ideas how such content could be 'indexed' and publicized through the National sites, almost like a 'portal'? Perhaps we can go full 'manual' and recruit club webmasters to post links to their new content here as well... as a courtesy. Would help everyone's traffic stats!

 

Regards, Robert

Edited by rbeach84

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Mr. Beach is correct.

 

Those of us who have mentioned this are, for the most part, talking about uploading images directly into forum posts as attachments. The members would not be able to link those attached images to any external websites. This would increase the storage requirement for the forum itself, but would not require creation of an image gallery. I could never support offering members free image gallery space. On the forums that do use this feature, some allow full size images to be attached to posts while others ask the forum users to resize their images - typically to the 800 x 600 range - before uploading them. Whatever the case, on a site as large as IPMS there are already thousands (tens of thousands?) of images - reviews, events, contests, etc. - posted on the various pages and more are added every month. It's only my opinion, but from a money standpoint, this feature would likely be a literal drop in the bucket compared to what we probably pay already.

 

The bigger issue may be that new forum software is required to allow image attachments and as I've witnessed in the past, just changing the "look" of a forum and some of the functionality can have a significant, negative impact on the satisfaction of people who use it. And then of course, there the issue of changing anything at all...after all, we who use this forum and have suggested this feature are just a "vocal minority".

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Guest PetrolGator

 

 

One more thought on topic: Much of the WIP type work in our club often ends up on the club website, not here. Any ideas how such content could be 'indexed' and publicized through the National sites, almost like a 'portal'? Perhaps we can go full 'manual' and recruit club webmasters to post links to their new content here as well... as a courtesy. Would help everyone's traffic stats!

 

Regards, Robert

 

This is something I am actively exploring right now.

 

Regarding images, I have been told "no" by the powers that be.

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Robert, I believe you're correct in saying we are basically talking about attaching photos to a specific forum post. You also mentioned a limit on size...say 800 x 600 pixels. Given the fact that large monitors...22" or so...are fairly common today, I'd suggest a maximum width of 1000 pixels with height being proportionate. Despite the pixel size, as long as the resolution is no more than 72 dpi...which is all you need on a computer...file size would remain very small. It's the resolution that kills your space, not the visual size.

 

For example...for those who are still a little confused...I send high resolution images (300 dpi) to magazine editors that are as much as 3 and 4 megabytes in size and the actual width is over 3000 pixels. At the same time, I can reduce the same image to 1000 pixels and 72dpi to wind up with an image of no more than 70 or 80 kilobytes. On a computer screen they are essentially identical when viewed as "fit to screeh", yet it makes a huge difference as a printed image.

 

Of course this entire thread is moot if changes allowing attachment of images to posts cannot be made or permitted.

 

Richard

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The issue that has been presented to the forum management is that having space allocated to pictures could be a liability if no one bothers to go through it and remove anything inappropriate. The concern appears largely content related.

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Of course the question then becomes "what is considered inappropriate". Each one of us would likely come up with a slightly different definition. Talk about a rock and a hard place!

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...which is precisely the issue.The nature of "objectionable" is relative to one's personal beliefs. The issue has reared its ugly head previously, resulting in some rather uncomfortable drama.

 

One could propose a ban on nudity of any kind in the figure domain, possibly. We, as forum moderators, could appoint someone to browse the files here and there, I guess.

 

I may try to make some proposals to the powers that be, but I just don't think it'll happen. Too much risk.

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...which is precisely the issue.The nature of "objectionable" is relative to one's personal beliefs. The issue has reared its ugly head previously, resulting in some rather uncomfortable drama.

 

One could propose a ban on nudity of any kind in the figure domain, possibly. We, as forum moderators, could appoint someone to browse the files here and there, I guess.

 

I may try to make some proposals to the powers that be, but I just don't think it'll happen. Too much risk.

Hasn't it already happened under the current system? Isn't that why we have moderators?

Edited by Schmitz

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Policing legions of pictures saved on a server is a far more time intensive duty than policing a forum.

 

Now, I can check to see if IP Board allows direct uploading where the photo would be IMMEDIATELY displayed, It would then be a matter of cost only. IMO, the additional money would be well invested if it increased membership here. We could not only see more business conducted on the forums but link this to the Facebook group.

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Policing legions of pictures saved on a server is a far more time intensive duty than policing a forum.

 

Now, I can check to see if IP Board allows direct uploading where the photo would be IMMEDIATELY displayed, It would then be a matter of cost only. IMO, the additional money would be well invested if it increased membership here. We could not only see more business conducted on the forums but link this to the Facebook group.

 

Once again, I think that to allow members to store images directly on the IPMS servers is a very bad idea.

 

The actual suggestion is to allow direct uploading of images into an individual forum post ONLY...think of an imbedded image in an e-mail - they are tied together, not seperate entities.

 

Under this format, policing the images would be no different - in fact easier - than policing the actual text in those same posts.

 

If direct uploading is technically not possible, then I would remove my suggestion entirely...a member accessible gallery is IMHO more trouble than its worth.

Edited by RLFoster

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Robert, I understood your proposal, though I was addressing both methods of image storage with my response.

 

I would support adding a plug in which uploaded images directly to the server, assuming such a thing was financially viable. I'll have to get with Eric again.

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Gents,

 

We are looking into a direct image uploader. TBA on when it'll be introduced. There are concerns regarding how the images will be stored that must be addressed.

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Robert, I understood your proposal, though I was addressing both methods of image storage with my response.

 

I would support adding a plug in which uploaded images directly to the server, assuming such a thing was financially viable. I'll have to get with Eric again.

Chris, I guess you were addressing both options, my bad...sorry for the misunderstanding.

 

With that said, your next post goes right back to mentioning both a "direct image uploader" and "how the images will be stored". At the risk of sounding pushy, let me state once again...Directly uploaded images are imbedded in forum posts and are NOT stored on the server as a seperate entity. There is NO image hosting taking place at all. If you are truely looking at hosting images, good luck. We tried this on one of the other modeling websites I frequent and had to get rid of it - for the very reasons outlined here, inappropriate images, remote linking, substantially higher storage requirements, etc. Since going to imbedded images only, all of these problems have been eliminated.

 

Good luck...

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The plug in that we're looking at is an image embedder that stores said image on the server. I'm unaware of an intrinsic image uploader that stores the data on some third party system without a high cost. The image would only be accessed from the post that it was uploaded to. There's also an option to disallow hot linking, thereby helping to circumvent some of the bandwidth problem.

 

Speaking with Eric, it's not the size of the files so much as the potential quantity loading the system. Like I said, TBA.

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Sounds good. If that occurs, there is a way that direct uploads can be used to increase membership. That way is Pinterest. For those who are unfamiliar with them, it is a website comprised of nothing but images. The twist is that anyone in the world...if they find a photo they find interesting...can 'pin' that image onto any 'board' on Pinterest. There are hundreds if not thousands of exceptionally high quality scale models and dioramas on there...and not a single one is pinned from the IPMS. Any image found on the internet...including forums...can be pinned, along with a short comment. A link identifying where it was pinned from is automatically included. Thus, if someone pins an image from one of the forum posts, that location will be identified with a link.

 

Photos hosted on Photobucket, etc, will be identified as coming from Photobucket with no IPMS mention...unless the person pinning it specifically mentions the IPMS in the comment box. However, that won't result in a link to the IPMS website.

 

If we do go to direct uploads and some of the model photos start appearing on Pinterest, there is considerable potential for new members. Oh, in case you're wondering, Pinterest is a family friendly site so there should be little concern about offensive images.

 

Richard

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Chris, Your latest post appeared while I was typing mine. Just so you know, Pinterest pins won't hotlink to the photo. It'll link to the page the email post containing the image is on.

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Okay, Chris. I see where you're going and it sounds good.

 

To be clearer, I should have said that the images are not stored as an accessible seperate file. Yes, there has to be an image somewhere on the system, but neither the original uploader or any other member (except perhaps the network administrator) will be able to know where it is stored.

 

Thank you for the info...

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This is a test. Of a ship.

 

Guess what folks?

 

post-1852-0-40256600-1411588636_thumb.jpg

 

This isn't on Photo Bucket.

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Excellent...I look forward to hearing (and more importantly, SEEING) more.

 

Cool...

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