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Mary
01-08-2009, 12:15 AM
Welcome to Blab 2009!
:party :woohoo

Blab 2008 saw more great discussions and new members. Somehow we survived the election, and enjoyed new factory releases, resins and customs. Blab also added some paid features including customizable profile pages and blog. :cool:


What's online for 2009?

First our annual state-of-Blab all-opinions-welcome discussion. To further open up the discussion this year we are adding the option to anonymously post a comment or pm management - just till the end of January. (See the end of this post.) :writing

Our software provider is working furiously on cool new future upgrades ... although they haven't specifically committed to which features and release dates. Be on the lookout for these possibilities before the end of the year - more manageable PM's including options to sort by sender or subject; customizable blog pages (similar to the profile pages; ) added forum user-friendliness (how would you like wysiwig post creation, without [ tag] codes? :hubba )



On with the discussion!

What questions do you have for Blab management? (post or PM)

Keeping in mind Blab's stated policies of relaxed moderation ... reviewing the FAQ rules ... do you think the rules are reasonable and are usually fairly applied?

Some discussion topics - please comment on anything else you'd like to -

Features new and old - chat, blog, gallery, pm's, profile pages, vm's ...

Posting personal information and opinions - Many members find Blab a source of comfort and support from fellow caring members. But Blab is also an audience of hundreds, and all may register their own thoughts and opinons about whatever is posted. How do you feel about posting personal information, and about personal info posted by others? If you have a blog does it offer a more protected alternative?

Disagreement and even rudeness aren't moderated on Blab. Management regularly receive reports about posts that are really just pithy counter-opinions, not bashes. What do you see as the difference between being offended and being bashed?

Politics, religion and other off-topics - Allowed in only 1 of the free forums, and in WOYM. In your opinion do these off-topics add or detract from Blab?


ID's available for posting or pm'ing management anonymously (suggestion of the mods :) )
(Access to this forum only; available through Jan. 31)
AnonA
AnonB
(anonymous id's have been de-commissioned :) )

Schnauzer
01-08-2009, 10:29 AM
HI Mary! Thanks for offering up this forum. I must admit being a non-techy kind of person, I don't really use alot of the features such as chat, blog or customized profile. I just figured out the gallery for the photo show. I still have no clue what the friendship requests are supposed to do. But I love Blab discussions. I like that the more controversial discussion topics remain on WYOM. I guess I'm pretty satisified.

The one thing I would love to see improved is the search feature. When I'm trying to find an old thread on a topic, I can rarely find it via search. It takes hours of literally scrolling thru the forums and I find that frustrating. Not sure what can be done, but that's my suggestion. Thanks and happy 2009.
Ann Bilon

wildwinds
01-08-2009, 11:14 AM
.I am looking forward to a new year of blab. I love every thing. I so miss it when its off.
some of my horses I could blame on blab. found them here. started the love of resin horses here too. to the help of a blab member.
my love of horses has just keep growing with all the blab friends to talk to .
I love all the new smiles. they make my day.:bananadance:bananadance

camaro88lover
01-08-2009, 03:41 PM
Is there any way we can be allowed more PMs? I'm finding that 200 just doesn't seem to be enough. I'm constantly trying to go through old ones and trying to see if there's any I can delete.

I do enjoy all the new smilies though :)

AnonA
01-08-2009, 05:16 PM
I think mods should be more active in helping new members. Maybe new members could 'buddy' with established members to help them get comfortable in blab. I'm noticing that sometimes when newbies join a conversation, some established members can really rail on them. Blab has become infamous for Bash Fests and that needs to stop.

laughingmareacres
01-08-2009, 05:41 PM
The one thing I would love to see improved is the search feature. When I'm trying to find an old thread on a topic, I can rarely find it via search. It takes hours of literally scrolling thru the forums and I find that frustrating. Not sure what can be done, but that's my suggestion. Thanks and happy 2009.
Ann Bilon

:yes

I fully admit I'm a broken record here - I really would love to be able to search 2-, 3-, and 4-letter words (not *those* 4-letter words! :lol). We have so many 3-letter acronyms and we can't search for them.

delacroix3721
01-08-2009, 05:49 PM
i'm trying to help the search function troubles by utilizing the tag feature. :)

i've done a lot of legwork to find pretty helpful back threads... customizing, BF newbie tips, questions about different molds and models. i hope maybe this can help some people find answers without having to wade too much. : P

i don't have too many suggestions to make... i like the new features, and i like how adding the new features hasn't changed the existing layout and functionality of Blab. everything is so user friendly, i find that the case anyway.

new smilies are always fun, i do miss :1drool though. :lol

and as for suggesting some older members help the newer members out... i'm not a mod, but i'm always here to answer questions any new member has. :)

Mary
01-08-2009, 09:35 PM
The new member suggestion is a good one. Some volunteers to be sort of newbie mentors would be a great start. Mods and admins can certainly help, but admittedly sometimes get caught up in administrative issues.



i'm trying to help the search function troubles by utilizing the tag feature. :)

i've done a lot of legwork to find pretty helpful back threads... customizing, BF newbie tips, questions about different molds and models. i hope maybe this can help some people find answers without having to wade too much. : P
...Gold star for you!! :grin The tags are supposed to serve exactly that function - a better alternative to search. We need some administrative work on the tags to make them more functional. It's on the radar. :)

Thanks all ... keep these cards and letters coming please ... :snowflake :egyptian :party :talk

jasper978
01-08-2009, 10:53 PM
I will second the Increasing PM space. I'd ask for another 100 messages or so if that isn't too much to ask for?

Also I think a time frame search function would be nice. Say searching for "gold charm customs" for a specific picture of one of Dorothy's pieces you remember her posting somewhere around march or april of 2006. The tags are good for those who use them, however, I admit I never even think about those when browsing blab and have yet to click on one.

Legacy
01-09-2009, 01:02 PM
I think mods should be more active in helping new members. Maybe new members could 'buddy' with established members to help them get comfortable in blab. I'm noticing that sometimes when newbies join a conversation, some established members can really rail on them. Blab has become infamous for Bash Fests and that needs to stop.

I really like this idea! I always feel bad for some of the newbies (especially the younger ones) who sometimes say something that gets them in trouble simply because they don't know the Blab dynamics. I think it would help if they had someone to guide them.

Whinnie
01-09-2009, 01:17 PM
I think mods should be more active in helping new members. Maybe new members could 'buddy' with established members to help them get comfortable in blab. I'm noticing that sometimes when newbies join a conversation, some established members can really rail on them. Blab has become infamous for Bash Fests and that needs to stop.

I do like this idea as well. I think it would also help break the ice. When they sign up, they can state that they want a buddy. I know when I started, I was so overwhelmed by just how many people where posting, and all these topics, my head just spun! And I was just a free member! Maybe, in the rules/intro we can state if they want a buddy and someone can help them, be their friend, and just explain to them about blab :) :conga

4ever_Unbridled
01-09-2009, 08:47 PM
i'm trying to help the search function troubles by utilizing the tag feature. :)

i've done a lot of legwork to find pretty helpful back threads... customizing, BF newbie tips, questions about different molds and models. i hope maybe this can help some people find answers without having to wade too much. : P

i don't have too many suggestions to make... i like the new features, and i like how adding the new features hasn't changed the existing layout and functionality of Blab. everything is so user friendly, i find that the case anyway.

new smilies are always fun, i do miss :1drool though. :lol

and as for suggesting some older members help the newer members out... i'm not a mod, but i'm always here to answer questions any new member has. :)

That's so thoughtful of you to go through all those old threads and tag them! Maybe if everyone took a little time to look through and tag some of the older threads then they will soon all be tagged therefore helping/solving the search problem.:yes

About the PMs, I don't really get a lot but I find that they do add up quickly and I have to go through and delete a lot quite often. It would be a little easier/more managable if we had more space.

Otherwise I too don't have much to suggest. I like that the original layout hasn't changed but new features have been added (such as the customized profile) and things have become more user friendly (like the photo Gallery).

I also miss :1drool! My wish list in my user notes had that smilie all over it and when it was taken out :1drool was left all over the place:lol. But I love all the new smilies!:bananadance:conga:party:noisemaker :bouncesnoman :cone:hockey:santananner

Mary
01-09-2009, 10:36 PM
What is a good way for people to offer to mentor - to connect newbies and mentors? Suggestions and ideas? :)

camaro88lover
01-09-2009, 10:42 PM
What is a good way for people to offer to mentor - to connect newbies and mentors? Suggestions and ideas? :)

What about a forum/thread for it - kind of like what is done for the Secret Santa? Maybe relate it to the "introduce yourself" thread?

Newbies can post in there and mentors can go in the thread and meet/match up with newbies.

laughingmareacres
01-09-2009, 11:40 PM
I also miss :1drool! My wish list in my user notes had that smilie all over it and when it was taken out :1drool was left all over the place:lol. But I love all the new smilies!:bananadance:conga:party:noisemaker :bouncesnoman :cone:hockey:santananner

I miss him, too! :lol

delacroix3721
01-10-2009, 11:49 AM
What is a good way for people to offer to mentor - to connect newbies and mentors? Suggestions and ideas? :)
hmm... maybe have a sticky in the introductions forum that has a list of older members who are online pretty frequently and who've said they'd make themselves available to any questions or problems newbies might have.

sort of like moderators, but perhaps by having a specific group of people do this task might keep from adding to the work moderators already have (not saying a moderator can't do both if they'd like though). :)

that said, it would put the responsibility on the new person to contact one of the "welcomers" themselves, and maybe that'd be too intimidating.... but maybe it wouldn't, if the "welcomers" had their name on a list saying they'd like to help new people out? lol i'm not sure, just an idea. :)

Mary
01-11-2009, 11:46 PM
Is the concern for new members mostly navigating the Blab forums, and finding where to post and get answers? And/or is it learning what to expect from some of the discussions where disagreements are stronger?

Thanks all for your feedback. :woohoo

isabelle
01-13-2009, 11:42 AM
I'd like to add my "second that" to the newbie mentor programme, and I'd certainly be willing to sign up :) It's a great idea! Maybe we could have a sticky with the mentors and a little summary... Like "Hi I am ___ and I have been active in the hobby for ___ years. I live in ___ and my interests are in OF/CM/Resin/mini etc... that way the newbies can choose someone they have things in common with, or might also be at shows close to them, where they could meet up! Or if the new person was international, it might help to have another international buddy who can help with buying/selling/collecting internationally! :D

I also very much agree with the recommendation of more PM space... I am ALWAYS filling up! :ppplease

Whinnie
01-15-2009, 11:43 AM
Is the concern for new members mostly navigating the Blab forums, and finding where to post and get answers? And/or is it learning what to expect from some of the discussions where disagreements are stronger?

Thanks all for your feedback. :woohoo

I think its nice to come in, and get to meet a specific person right away. As the blabs "problem" is, is that too many people are nice :lol! Not that its a bad thing, at all, its just overwhelming. If they had someone who could answer questions, and just be a "big brother/sister" to guide them through the first few days/weeks until they get the hang of it. The mentor would help in being their friend, and help them with posts and stuff. We could have a specific board to meet up with their mentors to ask questions, because if they are unpaid members, their PM's would fill up fast

delacroix3721
01-15-2009, 01:29 PM
Is the concern for new members mostly navigating the Blab forums, and finding where to post and get answers? And/or is it learning what to expect from some of the discussions where disagreements are stronger?
some of the issues i've seen some new members have....

* realizing Blab's not always a big happy family... quite a few differing opinions here, and sometimes those opinions get aired. using the words "everybody" and "we" tend to not go over well... everybody here is an individual with an individual opinion.

* realizing folks here have all kinds of personalities... some are more outspoken, for instance. it can take some time for a new member to adjust to all the different folks here and understand how they post.

* realizing there's more of a *mature* (to some extent! lol) crowd here, and text-talk-type of posts, language, and spelling should probably be reserved for chatting with friends in the Youth section, private messages, etc.

i've seen a few new members post a misplaced thread or two, but i mostly think people get feelings hurt or intimidated by not knowing member's personalities here and that just takes time (or a helpful older member) to learn. :)

RavenwolfDesign
01-15-2009, 04:41 PM
I also think it would be great to have someone to help out newcomers. I know when I joined I felt sort of like Whinnie. I think Jenn really helped to make me feel welcome. She seemed to be very friendly immediately and very warm and generous and so was muggybug and Melissa (adivaarabians) and Jaime Baker :) After a while I got to know more people and realize that there are many more very friendly blabbers, but those are the main ones that stand out as being extremely friendly at first! So definitely good candidates for helping newbies, and I also would be willing to do that. I am a mod on another forum and so I think I would like this task if it ever takes place.

Mary
01-15-2009, 11:54 PM
I do like these ideas! Another thing is to get a newbie with a question in touch with a mentor who is available. It could be discouraging to pm someone who isn't logging on again for a couple of weeks.

Maybe a forum restricted to mentors, mods and newbies who have been members for 3 months or less. If a newbie requests it their time there could be extended.

And do we really need to restrict the forum ... what's the risk of allowing anyone to answer? Hmmm ... not everyone would be familiar with the discussion of the mentor role.

The forum could have a sticky with some common newbie FAQ's and other helpful info. Newbies could search & post other questions.

If you think that's a good idea, what would you call the forum? How about the plainly-stated Newbie Forum? :grin

4ever_Unbridled
01-16-2009, 02:14 AM
Oooh, I like that idea Mary! A Newbie forum would be great! It could also be helpful to those new to the hobby if there was a stickied list of hobby terms as well as FAQs. Even I would benefit from it at certain times- "What does OOAK mean?":lol.

It would be a great place for new members to get comfortable "blabbing" with other Blabbers and learning how people "talk" on here. It would also get them used to posting with quotes, attachments, etc.

DraytonWoods
01-16-2009, 11:39 AM
I do like these ideas! Another thing is to get a newbie with a question in touch with a mentor who is available. It could be discouraging to pm someone who isn't logging on again for a couple of weeks.

Maybe a forum restricted to mentors, mods and newbies who have been members for 3 months or less. If a newbie requests it their time there could be extended.

And do we really need to restrict the forum ... what's the risk of allowing anyone to answer? Hmmm ... not everyone would be familiar with the discussion of the mentor role.

The forum could have a sticky with some common newbie FAQ's and other helpful info. Newbies could search & post other questions.

If you think that's a good idea, what would you call the forum? How about the plainly-stated Newbie Forum? :grin

Yes, Newbie forum would do it!

I have wondered if there is a way to put a title on the side of our box that contains our avatar and location-- I've seen other boards have a 'moderator' or something next to their names and that would be really helpful I think. The reason why I bring this up is because in the case of the Newbie forum, we could have mentors have 'mentor' on their box, so that newbies would know who to speak to. And I think that anyone should be able to post into the forum, so that they can get the hang of volleying in Blab converation.

DraytonWoods
01-16-2009, 11:46 AM
This might be just me :uh but I would like to see a sort of refresh to the appearance of the board. New logo, new colors perhaps? New tshirts and badges for Breyerfest? (with new logo to keep everything unified)

Mary
01-16-2009, 08:36 PM
This might be just me :uh but I would like to see a sort of refresh to the appearance of the board. New logo, new colors perhaps? New tshirts and badges for Breyerfest? (with new logo to keep everything unified)You're in charge. :lol :grin

Just kidding. But .... what if you could pick your own colors, from a limited selection ??? Seriously, this time. :hubba

People who like doing these things, how about some suggestions for color schemes? With the html color numbers defined (exactly by location of color.) This is a real possibility - a few color patterns a user can select as their default display.

DraytonWoods
01-16-2009, 09:11 PM
You're in charge. :lol :grin

Just kidding. But .... what if you could pick your own colors, from a limited selection ??? Seriously, this time. :hubba

People who like doing these things, how about some suggestions for color schemes? With the html color numbers defined (exactly by location of color.) This is a real possibility - a few color patterns a user can select as their default display.

I like green, I did a very quick and dirty color-grab just now (so take it for what it's worth)
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/gruentransfer/scheme.gif

If I were in charge :lol I'd open up a contest for the logo and unload a Honey to the winner! :lol We have so many talented designers on here, I think we could all give each other a run for it.

But I'd definitely like new schwag for BF. :yes :haha

Mary
01-17-2009, 09:57 PM
But I'd definitely like new schwag for BF. :yes :hahaSo would I!!! I have actually looked into this. :yes :woohoo

The one thing holding back BF schwag is that it costs M.O.N.E.Y. I have had a few weakly struggling ideas.

Would people buy Blab t-shirts and wear them if they were, well, not ugly? What if the t-shirt had your Blab username and your real name on it ??? What if you had to get that part done yourself, you just were able to buy a Blab t-shirt printed with a space for said names? Bought in volume would make it less expensive for the wearer, but it can take quite a bit up front, and likely not all would sell (depending on the volume of course.)

Other ideas - would love to give these away but not sure Blab can afford it - those square thin cloth grocery bags (the ones you can buy at the grocery for about $1) can be ordered printed up in bulk. To carry around all the new models bought at BF. :yes

And ... if I could figure out a way to distribute these before BF, I do have Blab name tags, along with the plastic pin-on things they slip into. They have a space for your Blab name and your real name. These have been great ice-breakers at shows ... people think they don't know anyone, but then realize that they know people on Blab. :woohoo

Major BF weakness - I want terribly to go but don't have the time off IRL work. But maybe some warm-hearted Blabbers could hand things around ...

TheLuckDragon
01-17-2009, 10:04 PM
So would I!!! I have actually looked into this. :yes :woohoo

The one thing holding back BF schwag is that it costs M.O.N.E.Y. I have had a few weakly struggling ideas.

Would people buy Blab t-shirts and wear them if they were, well, not ugly? What if the t-shirt had your Blab username and your real name on it ??? What if you had to get that part done yourself, you just were able to buy a Blab t-shirt printed with a space for said names? Bought in volume would make it less expensive for the wearer, but it can take quite a bit up front, and likely not all would sell (depending on the volume of course.)

Other ideas - would love to give these away but not sure Blab can afford it - those square thin cloth grocery bags (the ones you can buy at the grocery for about $1) can be ordered printed up in bulk. To carry around all the new models bought at BF. :yes

And ... if I could figure out a way to distribute these before BF, I do have Blab name tags, along with the plastic pin-on things they slip into. They have a space for your Blab name and your real name. These have been great ice-breakers at shows ... people think they don't know anyone, but then realize that they know people on Blab. :woohoo

Major BF weakness - I want terribly to go but don't have the time off IRL work. But maybe some warm-hearted Blabbers could hand things around ...

I want Blab B-fest Swag! I'm still hoping that there are some Sling-bags left from the x-mas sale. I didn't have money for them then, but should in a month or two.... I want to get one for me and my mom to carry around at B-fest.

I like the T-shirt idea and the shopping bag idea! But I say hot pink instead of green, I can't imagine why..... :haha

I think maybe in bulk and then maybe people can choose to put their name/username on if they want. While I'm all for shouting out my username/real name at B-fest or a model horse show, not sure how that would work while at the supermarket.... Just me though. I would happily and proudly wear my Blab T-shirt anywhere! :bananadance

BearsnBugs
01-18-2009, 06:35 PM
The one thing holding back BF schwag is that it costs M.O.N.E.Y. I have had a few weakly struggling ideas.



Cafepress or Zazzle would be good for this. Zazzle allows personalization. Both are easy to set up and Zazzle you can open one shop and have as many images on the same item. I love Zazzle, myself.

Using Zazzle or Cafepress wouldn't cost Blab anything.

Stacy
01-18-2009, 06:37 PM
Cafepress or Zazzle would be good for this. Zazzle allows personalization. Both are easy to set up and Zazzle you can open one shop and have as many images on the same item. I love Zazzle, myself.

Using Zazzle or Cafepress wouldn't cost Blab anything.

What ever happened to the Blab Cafepress shop? I miss that shop, I'd love to have another blab shirt :sad

BearsnBugs
01-18-2009, 06:47 PM
What ever happened to the Blab Cafepress shop? I miss that shop, I'd love to have another blab shirt :sad

It still exists. If you go to cafepress and seach "blab" it'll pull it up. (Sorry, I can't get the link for you right now.)

Melissa
01-18-2009, 06:51 PM
I would like the idea of having a contest to redesign the logo/forums.

Stitch
01-26-2009, 11:21 PM
is there a way we can get the voice chat working on the chat room?

BreyeBabe4ever
01-28-2009, 05:59 PM
I don't think this has been suggested but it would be great if we could have more memory for our pm.that would be great thanks.