Subsequent to the last big platform change many of you expressed your unhappiness with the changes in the new layout. We heard you loud and clear and have been working hard to incorporate some of that feedback.
I had already linked up a post a couple weeks ago [Link here] describing the coming changes. Hopefully these changes will go live tonight between 7 and 8pm EST but you know how that goes with IT stuff right? [fingers crossed]
Pulling from the linked article here is the crux of what drove these coming changes:
Two of the most often-recurring themes were: (1) the homepage is hard to scan and (2) community features feel completely buried (and are therefore completely losing traction).
When they say the HP is hard to scan they mean visually with the eye which is important when using mobile devices. 'Community features' refers to fanposts and fanshots.
Correcting the second item though has been and continues to be my biggest concern. One of my biggest enjoyments in managing CSR is getting a lot of member posts and participation. I'm sure you have all noticed how much that dropped off after the recent change. I'm hopeful we can get back to that and even further with the change.
For starters the 'river' of new posts as we call it will no longer snake back and forth. It will be a straight line on the left with a single sidebar on the right. This should make the HP easier scan and look for updates. Also the size of the cover and photos will be reduced to enable more content to show on the entry screen.
Recommended Fanposts and Fanshots will be moved closer to the top and be easier find; hopefully stand out more too. Also we the Editor Staff will be able to put Rec'd fanposts in the cover (the very top of the HP), something the previous release does not allow.
There are some other changes to the menu bars and navigation of the site that should offer improvement as well. The most useful changes in my view though remain moving up the fanposts and fanshots to make them more immediately visible.
Feel free to use this comment thread to discuss any issues you are having after the launch tonight...@I know sometimes CSR members are real shy about giving us feedback on how we are doing@. So here's a little nudge for you to do that...or you can just bitch about anything you want if you like. Armanti Edwards anyone? lol...(That was a joke, no AE thread derailment is needed)
Of course you can always send a help ticket to firstname.lastname@example.org which I encourage you to do. I'm not necessarily going to be monitoring the thread and sending feedback to SBN but I encourage your feedback either way. If you have any questions put them in the thread and maybe someone will have any answer.
We realize the last launch had some hiccups as well, particularly on the mobile platform but I know SBN has tried to learn from that experience as well. Again fingers crossed this one goes smoothly which I have about 99% confidence it will (but that last 1% can be a pain).
Cheers and keep pounding!