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What bothers you about the forums? (Poor spelling?)
Thread poster: Bernhard Sulzer

Lancashireman  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:16
German to English
Overuse of the Quote feature Aug 18, 2015

Particularly quotes within quotes within quotes where the white area on the screen crowds out the yellow.

 

2nl (X)  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 16:16
Quote-O-Meter Aug 18, 2015

Yes, a Quote-O-Meter that warns you when you're adding too little new text (in relation to the quotation) would be yet another useful innovation.

A response from Proz to all the proposed improvements would be great. Henry, are you reading this thread?


 

Dan Lucas  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:16
Member (2014)
Japanese to English
You go where the information is Aug 18, 2015

Matthias Brombach wrote:
From a technical point of view you surely may be right:
Independent of the so-called social media there are a lot of forum software providers on the market, like https://xenforo.com

Well, although widely used, XenForo is quite expensive, so probably not the way forward for a free forum. You'd want to keep costs down.
But would it be useful for our freelancer business to always switch between 5, 6 or even more fora / social media to share / gain relevant information then?

I think you go where the best information is. I belong to one (1) forum related to translation, which is ProZ, plus others for DIY, motorcycles, programming and so on. I don't mind that, because each of those forums add value for me.

My take is this: if things aren't going as well as you hoped on a forum you can either give up and say that this is the best of all possible arrangements or you can seek to change the world. Or, if changing the world sounds a little demanding for a Tuesday morning, start by just changing the forum.

However, if that forum is controlled by one entity (in this case ProZ management) and if, as seems the case, that entity is not motivated to change, then maybe we should look at competing solutions. TranslatorsCafe is just a lesser clone of ProZ. From my perspective there's no point going there.

Groups on LinkedIn such as "Unacceptable Translation Rates Naming & Shaming" are horrible to navigate and use, which is not surprising because discussion was not the purpose for which LinkedIn was designed. Incidentally, in the case of that group, although the idea is worthy, in reality the tone is too whiney and not very constructive.

Free*. Inclusive. Transparent. Independent. What's not to like? If such a forum were to exist, it might at least prompt ProZ's management - who seem to me to be sleepy or indolent, or both - to take its own forums more seriously. These forums are old-fashioned and hard to use and, worst of all, management is not engaged.

Can anybody honestly say that any part of ProZ management is active on the forums? Where's the back and forth, the frank exchange of opinions? A few days ago I asked a question on a rapidly growing technical site which is already pretty large. Within 24 hours I had a response from the founder of the site. Now that is engagement.

Many of us are paying customers and our expectations are far too low. If there are problems in free forums run by enthusiasts I bite my tongue or volunteer to make those forums a better place. After all, what right do I have to demand change where I am not even contributing money?

But ProZ is run for the money. That money is not being used well and professionals like myself are not getting a satisfactory return on our annual investment.

Regards
Dan

*When I say "free", there might have to be advertising, or maybe a nominal charge of a few dollars per year to cover hosting costs if the forum were so popular that those costs became an issue


[Edited at 2015-08-18 08:22 GMT]


 

Rachel Braff  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 09:16
French to English
+ ...
about a "like" option Aug 18, 2015

By far the most functional forum I've seen is on a knitting website, Ravelry. There are buttons at the bottom for agree/disagree/like/interesting/educational/funny/love (I think that's it). They're actually very useful, much more than the Facebook "like" button. The agree/disagree options are nice for askers, I think--I'd be interested in knowing the wider consensus about possible responses to a question I asked. Sure, you can always reply just to agree, but I still think it adds a lot.
... See more
By far the most functional forum I've seen is on a knitting website, Ravelry. There are buttons at the bottom for agree/disagree/like/interesting/educational/funny/love (I think that's it). They're actually very useful, much more than the Facebook "like" button. The agree/disagree options are nice for askers, I think--I'd be interested in knowing the wider consensus about possible responses to a question I asked. Sure, you can always reply just to agree, but I still think it adds a lot.

Another nice feature is to be able to reply specifically to a certain post; and then the author of that post clearly sees that they've had X replies. To see if you've had a reply here, you have to sift through every single post.

I'm not really sure why I'm posting this, though, since the thread wasn't started by ProZ with the aim of improving the forums, and I'm pretty sure the powers that be aren't going to read my post and say, "aha! Let's do that!"



[Edited at 2015-08-18 10:46 GMT]
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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:16
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
List of future improvements Aug 18, 2015

2nl wrote:

A response from Proz to all the proposed improvements would be great. Henry, are you reading this thread?


I wouldn't hold my breath. If staff members reply to this kind of requests at all, the usual response is something along the lines of "We'll evaluate this and may add it to our list for future improvements".

If said list exists, it must be pretty long by now, as items keep being added while it is a rare occurrence that something actually gets implemented.


 

Dan Lucas  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:16
Member (2014)
Japanese to English
You couldn't make this up Aug 18, 2015

Sheila Wilson wrote:
Dan Lucas wrote:
Personally I find the moderation inconsistent and rather prim.

Rather prim, yes, but that's better than allowing the horrible slanging matches you get on so many.

Having just complained about intrusive moderation, I have had a post waiting for approval for several hours this morning. No contact from the moderators, just a post stuck in limbo. It's as if ProZ is trying to prove my criticism correct... Self-caricature, anybody?

Erik Freitag wrote:
I wouldn't hold my breath. If staff members reply to this kind of requests at all, the usual response is something along the lines of "We'll evaluate this and may add it to our list for future improvements".

And that's all the interaction you get. They may be planning great things, but since management doesn't talk to us, how can we know? In the absence of action or meaningful discussion, it's only logical to assume that nothing will be done.

Regards
Dan


 

Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:16
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
My point exactly. Aug 18, 2015

Dan Lucas wrote:

(...) assume that nothing will be done.



That's exactly the point I was trying to make.

[Bearbeitet am 2015-08-18 12:33 GMT]


 

Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 16:16
Member
Italian to English
This is an international forum. Why the draconian approach to English grammar? Aug 18, 2015

2G Trad wrote:

Blaming users for their spelling mistakes. That's one of the things that bother me in a forum.



Yes!


2G Trad wrote:

Hide posts from selected users. That's the function I would love in Proz fora.



Double yes. A "like" button would be good too - not everyone has the time to write a reply to every interesting post, especially given the language requirements being doled out by some.


 

Nele Van den Broeck  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 16:16
French to Dutch
+ ...
I also like Ravelry's system... Aug 18, 2015

Rachel Braff wrote:

By far the most functional forum I've seen is on a knitting website, Ravelry. There are buttons at the bottom for agree/disagree/like/interesting/educational/funny/love (I think that's it). They're actually very useful, much more than the Facebook "like" button. The agree/disagree options are nice for askers, I think--I'd be interested in knowing the wider consensus about possible responses to a question I asked. Sure, you can always reply just to agree, but I still think it adds a lot.


[Edited at 2015-08-18 10:46 GMT]


I also like the buttons found at the bottom of Ravelry's forums, especially because it makes it possible to really explain what you want to say. With a Facebooklike for example, depending of the context of my like, I can be expressing that I like what the other person is saying, that I agree, that I feel sorry for the other person, that I think he/she said something funny, ... whereas with the Ravelrybuttons you have more options.


 

Henry Dotterer
Local time: 10:16
SITE FOUNDER
Now I am Aug 19, 2015

Hi all,

2nl asked if I was reading the forum. I was not, but his asking prompted someone else to let me know about it, so now I have.

Here are the suggestions I extract from this thread:

* Formatting editor
* Simple way to insert images done
* Way to save drafts
* Option to delete a post
* Reduce wait time for a post to appear after posting it (when it is clear after those few posts that someone is a legitimat
... See more
Hi all,

2nl asked if I was reading the forum. I was not, but his asking prompted someone else to let me know about it, so now I have.

Here are the suggestions I extract from this thread:

* Formatting editor
* Simple way to insert images done
* Way to save drafts
* Option to delete a post
* Reduce wait time for a post to appear after posting it (when it is clear after those few posts that someone is a legitimate non-trolling and non-spamming poster)
* Agree / disagree done
* Better mobile support done
* Read / unread ("skip to the last post you read")
* Predictive writing tool (hah)
* Daily poll discussion thread should appear on the main forum page
* More postings of translations for people to discuss
* Discourage very long posts done ("inclusive" format)
* Option to filter out certain forums (ex. TRADOS-related)
* Voting / tagging of threads and/or posts (agree/disagree/like/interesting/educational/funny/love) done
* Hide posts from selected users
* Discourage repetitive threads (better forum search?)
* "Block ill-intentioned people from access the profile"
* Spellchecker
* More transparency about poster identity
* Better search of all of ProZ.com
* Attract direct end clients from small and medium businesses

My general reaction to these is that most are good suggestions. Most have also been implemented in other forum software. The ProZ.com forums were made about fifteen years ago, when none of the available tools had the sorts of functionality we needed. Is now the time to jump to a new tool? The hard work of course is in porting everything over, and getting people comfortable with any new system. Thoughts? Are you ok with jumping to a new system?

If so, which do you like? There were a few suggested already...

(By the way, the suggestion to "attract direct end clients from small and medium businesses" is not related to forums but it is one thing I would love to do for both our freelance and agency members. That would be a topic for another thread, though!)
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Olly Pekelharing  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 16:16
Member (2009)
Dutch to English
While you're at it Henry: the invoicing tool Aug 19, 2015

There is also a forum dedicated to the invoicing tool and the main problem with this forum is that the suggestions and requests people (me) post on it are only rarely followed up. As far as I can tell, the last time any improvements were made was in 2013, by one Jason Grimes, who quickly implemented a number of useful changes in consultation with us users and briefly gave me the hope that things had improved for good. Sadly, since then, although you can get staff to acknowledge your forum posts ... See more
There is also a forum dedicated to the invoicing tool and the main problem with this forum is that the suggestions and requests people (me) post on it are only rarely followed up. As far as I can tell, the last time any improvements were made was in 2013, by one Jason Grimes, who quickly implemented a number of useful changes in consultation with us users and briefly gave me the hope that things had improved for good. Sadly, since then, although you can get staff to acknowledge your forum posts if you persist, nothing is ever actually done with them... It's a pity because its a handy tool (and a critical tool) and the main reason I am still a paying member.

Olly
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Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:16
Hebrew to English
What bothers me about the forums... Aug 19, 2015

...is the annual native/non-native summer smackdown.
How about a five year moratorium on the subject?


 

Angie Garbarino  Identity Verified
Member (2003)
French to Italian
+ ...
agree Aug 26, 2015

Ty Kendall wrote:

...is the annual native/non-native summer smackdown.
How about a five year moratorium on the subject?


urghhh


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:16
Member (2008)
Italian to English
yellow Sep 12, 2015

Why was it ever decided that YELLOW is a good background colour? Was it out of a sadistic intention to ruin our eyesight?

[Edited at 2015-09-12 08:48 GMT]


 

Inga Petkelyte  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 15:16
Lithuanian to Portuguese
+ ...
Moratorium on grumblers? Sep 12, 2015

What about a moratorium on grumblers? Those that go to the topics of no their interest and then complain, complain, complain...?

 
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