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my grief

Chris Bell

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Im here today to express my grief,

No its not support issues nor service; that area is working flawlessly!

My grief is with probably with Matt!, Though we haven’t communicated much I feel those who whisper in his ear drive IPS to a place where I find myself looking into new solutions,


It used to be about productivity; before v4 it was spot on when it comes to interface efficiency and comfort,

Since v4 it became about mobile app features we as the people who pay the bills don’t care about!

Ill tell you what I care about exactly, my PM box and the fact that I have conversations spawning over 1000 pages yet I can’t search PM’s content or correspondence,

I have to go page by page and visually search what I’m looking for, seriously?! 


You overhauled PM with this new restrictive view in desktop environment!

While I’ve heard all the reasoning at the time; and I have brought this up many time now! None of these stand the test of time,

I’ve heard every explanation on this round earth, as earth it’s still round; we are now back at the starting point again!

Frankly guys no bars held; its BS! PM sucks! There I said it!


I was told this is the new better PM interface it works better bla bla…

You know what all this bla bla and two years later;

can you actually expand PM page to use the rest of the page?

The answer is NO!


Yes its tiny now and responsive and we can see it on our phone;

that’s not what I paid for nor wish to continue supporting development if the direction is making the app as uncomfortable as possible for desktop users diminishing productivity,

what was the point of restricting desktop PM view? the reasoning I got was so we can use wide screen, can we?

or when you resize the screen it remain restricted and doesn’t fill the whole page?

What’s the point people?


i feel like the company lost their core principles that lead me to pick IPS and now gets excited about every new feature they can support; completely ignoring the basics that got IPS to where it is,

Seriously take a closer look; competitors out there become more and more efficient with lowered costs,

IPS is the most expensive application in this market slice; yet it give back less and less!


While you all get excited on supporting a new devices or a new responsive feature we have to chase addon that break our sites without our knowledge,

Basic things like that you’d expect at this point in time should not be an issue with such fancy platform; yet I bet it’s not even on the list of to do,

Unless I tinker with them all day I have no way of knowing an addon broke my site or preventing registration and such,

Really in these days and age?

let’s get a new responsive line in the header it’s more important than to create a system that forces addon developers to comply and update their addons,


Now we take a look at eCommerce application which is the most important portion of this suit and what supports forums operation for many;

do I really need to go there and break it down? its a bismol!

With new eCommerce platforms out there… guys move your asses or our ass will move to another provider who takes these worries off my table!

You’ve gotten too comfortable in your wrong ways; It’s time for spring refresh!


Lindy please do not come back with your all time winner “you can move to another provider” and we can still be friends, i know that already!

We have not been patience and supporting your company all this time to deserve this in return;

we want , we demand solutions and we deserve them! no more excuses or Mr. nice guy camouflage, 

These are basic elementary needs you all been neglecting for too long now; it has to stop!

own up!


Even though we got comfortable in our ways too; they can be changed if they become annoying or put our customers at risk,

And a platform that breaks security through its addons exposing our private data is not something anyone will tolerate!

i don’t have the time or wish spending resources on checking compliance every day when I’m paying IPS a premium every 6 months on top of licensing!


Best regards,


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55 minutes ago, Chris Bell said:

let’s get a new responsive line in the header it’s more important than to create a system that forces addon developers to comply and update their addons,

Can you explain this? You complained about mobile, and now you want a responsive feature designed for mobile so I'm confused.  

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Not sure if this will help Chris but when issues like this arise I've found it about a 100 times more productive to drop @Lindy a line or two or three ? Keep in mind there's a person that deals with issues or concerns that should be dealt with outside the scope of what this forum was really designed for. And TBH, he's really a pretty fair person, when he's not driving a gm product around anyhow. GM guys and their bloated egos you know ? 

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I read the post twice now, The way i see it, you dont know how to use the suite.

your frustration is

You just dont know how to use the search in PM’s 

You dont know how to check if an addon breaks your site or prevents people from registration

you dont like the design 

am i wrong? then please explain in details whats the problem  

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  • Management

Sorry for your disappointment, Chris.

For what it's worth, no one person at IPS writes the product roadmap. I assure you that there's no secret society, whispers or handshakes; when a suggestion comes up, there is a multi-level vetting process that ensures all angles are accounted for: can we develop it? can we sell it? can we support it? Things do not generally just get added willy nilly these days - no matter who you know.  ?  

Regarding PMs, I would hope that you are already aware that you can in fact search PMs.


This does not drill down to specific messages, which may be the crux of your concern. I don't think we're adverse to exploring this, it's just not regularly come up as a "must have" and to be honest, I'm not sure it's typical to have 1000 messages in a single conversation. 

I'm not really sure I understand your contention regarding the "desktop view." It looks and behaves like similar systems such as Facebook messenger, for it is in fact a messenger and is not really intended to behave like an email client.

Regarding addons - we allow extremely deep integration with the framework. It's frankly a double-edged sword at times in that third party authors have a lot of flexibility, but because of that, we can't always "sandbox" modifications the way Apple can -- meaning, an app on your iPhone isn't going to break your entire iPhone as Apple does not allow third party developers to interact with the device or OS on that level. With that said, hopefully in 4.4, we will have - and require third party authors to use - an IPS hosted versioning system. This means that when an author updates their resource, it will show in your ACP as an available update. Now, this doesn't guarantee a resource will be updated to address any compatibility issues, but it should go a long way in minimizing the need for customers to go down their list of resources and check each listing in the marketplace. 

While I personally don't do a lot of web browsing on mobile - the fact is, 66% of all web users do and that number is steadily rising. Mobile has been a strong focus and for good reason - it's kind of a big deal and I can say with complete confidence that you would be in the overwhelming minority of "people that pay the bills" (for which we're appreciative) that are unconcerned with mobile. ? 

As I've said many times in the past - we don't develop for our own personal interest; we develop for the customer-base at large. If we had a large segment of the customer base that wanted an email client-esque experience with the messenger, we'd of course prioritize accordingly. A growing number of clients wanted alternate search options, for example, so -- we [finally] did it. We need to focus on providing current/modern technology that empowers community operators to remain relevant themselves via a solution that engages an audience accustomed to a social media type experience. So, respectfully, things like social promotion features and integration, clubs, revenue generation, mobile experience, etc. unfortunately do take precedent over accommodating more limited use cases (comparatively) like using the PM system as an expansive helpdesk (Commerce has helpdesk functionality.) 

I can tell you're frustrated and something has been festering, so I'm glad you got this off your chest - we appreciate the feedback. If, however, you really feel our direction with things like responsive technology/mobile support and the items I've mentioned that promote social engagement, clubs, monetization, etc. is "the wrong direction" - I know you don't want to hear this, but I really feel you'll continue to be disappointed with our platform. While there are many "basic" things we would like to do (and eventually will), including spruce up the reporting and PM systems - nothing else matters if you can't keep your existing users engaged and capture new audiences, so that's where we feel customers want us to place the most attention. We're always willing to stand corrected and we have not been around for 16 years by discounting customer feedback. Nonetheless, we know we can't be everything to everyone, try as we might. 

I wish I had a "sure, we'll do that!" magic bullet fix for you. I will check into the feasibility of contextual message searching in PMs though - that would be a handy feature. 

Thanks for sharing your time and feedback with us. I'm sorry again for your overall disappointment and wish I could do more to help. Hopefully you'll stick with us, but I wish you the best of luck on whatever path you choose. 

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The topic starter is right, cutting desktop functionality is always a bad move and it doesn't matter how the mobile counts are. The decision to remove pagination in personal messages on desktop view was wrong, it's just that simple.  If we follow the path how facebook is doing it all, then the next thing to expect is a removed pagination on topics?

Please don't get me wrong, mobile is important. But not at the cost of the desktop users. 

10 hours ago, Tom S. said:

2/10 for logic

1/10 for grammar

10/10 for comedy

0/10 for civility

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Thank you for chiming in guys ❤️ 
i was/am frustrated and before i go into to my reasoning to anyone who reading this afterwards... i have nothing but respects and much love to IPS Team!
it wasn't the simplest start but i have learned the ropes of the team and truly appreciate the professional manner IPS runs!
i didn't mean no disrespect in the way i expressed myself; i see all IPS staff as friends many of them been there to help in the time of need;
this is not a first correspondence, hence the somewhat informal approach :blush:  

i could only wish every service run this way! 

i didn't mean to sound like i'm pointing fingers at Matt; i was being sarcastic, i know how IPS internal system work :) 
these guys are great and have all the best intentions; i feel that their enthusiasm sometime effect priority which doesn't always line up with the feature productivity in real life,
and again this is not done with male intent; nor i was suggesting it was/is!

to my grief; its really a straw that broke the Camel's back; i happened to be on our forums front page  as a guest; which usual never happens as im always logged in,
you can imagine my surprise when i found out that guests are able to view information that should been kept private as i selected this in setting;
i don't logout every day to check if settings are retained and to find these issue this way is extremely disturbing; what else is broken while we are unaware?
we spend allot of money in securing our servers just to allow a tiny addon to break it without our knowledge? (even if its unintentional!)

i really do wish 3rd party addon comply the way apple addon's do as this makes our life worry free! with security concerns on the rise daily this is very very important more so than another responsive feature (Joel i wasn't complaining about mobile or responsive features; just that they got higher priority (imo) than functional desktop features,)
and we want "worry free" and happy to pay for the peace of mind and our customers security,
i'm well aware that this is not always bullet prof but having something in place is better than nothing at all, 

this really what made me very upset; compound this with a bunch really small issues that collected over time,

and really guys i dont wish to come across as  unappreciative customer; i let allot of these little thing slide over time because they dont really matter in the big picture; IPS is still quality!
but they do addon; the PM issue is one of them which bothered me from day one!
why cripple productivity; we manage our environment via desktops!
we always have been long before mobile devices became popular for main stream; even though we can do some administrative duties off a mobile or iPad device,
no professional wants to sit and develop in front a mobile device or make it its main work tool; to me it appeared as mobile devices got more priority due to hype that was really nice for the end users but not for us admins and owner who need full desktop support;  when it really just needed to stay as it was! simple and plain PM system,

as it happens i know we can (finally ? ) search emails, i have voiced my concerns in the past regarding search and indeed it got much better over time,
though still not perfect but at least works instead of using google to search my own site :) 

now when i get to my PM every now and than and i have to go back into a long conversation; and they do happen with our customers more often than not!
i get frustrated when i have to find some file in a long PM; i cant even tell my customers to self help and search their own PM which was the point in the first place,

instead of having a million emails from each customer; a single ongoing PM conversation is more clean and efficient imo,
the customer should be able to search that PM and find any material he needs to use long after the conversation ended,
with one PM there's much less clutter for the customer or me handling many of them at once,

if i may while we are at it; eCommerce works but its not enough to just be able to process a transaction!
in these day and age where people monetize through their forums it is only appropriate that IPS eCommerce finally mature to full grown eCommerce,
if you ask me what im willing to pay for and what you can sale me; its not much deeper mobile support as much as the basics that allow us to run these forums,

the days and spirit of "free" internet are over, today it costs allot of money to run these sites and maintain them,
we need a proper monetization system to go along with our forums; there are too many basic logical flaws that need urgent attention on the eCommerce side guys!

myself as well as our dedicated IPS dev would be more than happy to point these out,

 ooh... while i'm ranting; it would be nice to be able to dismiss the update messages in our ACP's,
its not that we dont want to update; or we wont be updating, we just have to wait our turn!
since its not urgent for us to update it was ok with us to be pushed to the back of the line with our dedicated IPS developer;
in the meantime it would be nice if we can acknowledge the message and free up ACP real estate,

(are these extra dots from my browser font or a bug in the text editor?
See the word ACP above, when i type its fine; posted it adds some dots)

Thank you again everyone for taking the time ❤️
i hope this better explains my "rant"






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Much nicer tone than your first post ?

I agree with searching of PM's. That seems like a useful feature.

Your point on "eCommerce" seems vague though. The Commerce app does allow for a lot of opportunities to monetise a forum. What aspects do you feel are missing?

22 minutes ago, Chris Bell said:

it would be nice to be able to dismiss the update messages in our ACP's,

Yes to that too.

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i didn't want to go into specific eCommerce issues on this thread; for most parts the guys know exactly what i am talking about with regards to eCommerce drawbacks,
there are many basic issues with the logic behind eCommerce that restricts it too much in functioning as a full eCommerce,

in this aspect one of the main issues is you cannot register before you complete an approved credit card order?! sound logical from a security aspect but impractical in reality!
there is some logic in code behind this that needs overhauling; this trickles down to other aspects of eCommerce that when you are a heavy user of eCommerce they become more apparent and crippling; im not sure exactly what is the technical obstacle that was never dealt with to this day with regards to eCommerce,

a simple negligible example...
now that one has managed to sign up to our shop by completing an approved credit cards order first!
he is so excited he decided to buy his friend a gift card from our shop; all good up to here? you'd think but its not!
the only way to use this certificate is if you already signed up to our shop as a customer,
otherwise there's no way for a new customer to claim his gift card since he never complete an order first and will not be able to complete signup to shop to claim his gift card,

that's just to mention a few and there are many of these little catch 22 situation in eCommerce as i mentioned earlier if you are a casual user you likely wont run into these issues,
even if you did as a casual user for most cases one will never raise that flag and just move on relinquishing the sale he could have made;
as its not worth the hassle; most changes diverting from the default restricted manner eCommerce currently operate will require a professional to alter the code!
and even than the framework is restrictive for eCommerce as its barely been getting any attention for years now!  ? 




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10 minutes ago, Chris Bell said:

one of the main issues is you cannot register before you complete an approved credit card order?!

Of course you can.
(Unless you turn on the option to force a purchase in the Commerce settings.) 


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No, this was not ”addressed“. It was never an issue. Commerce is an optional app for the suite. Of course installing it doesn‘t stop users to register accounts, e.g. to use Forums, Pages and so on. That would be insane and was never the case. And I am also pretty sure that the Force A Purchase option is turned off by default. So if its on in your store, you have turned it on.

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in that case this is still pending! 
we run separate suits one is strictly eCommerce and the other is forums,
this option is available for forums but not if you run eCommerce as a standalone!

we opted running this architecture for security and redundancy purposes,
we run both as standalone dedicated servers with each acting as emergency backup of each other,
as well as cross offsite storage of daily and hourly backups,

i originally was nuder the impression we can run each module from a separate server,
since we cannot; we run two suits each running the modules required,
although we have figured out a workaround; currently there is no clean native way to get these two to cooperate and play nice as one, 
even with both ends totaling the sum modules of a single suite,  

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37 minutes ago, Chris Bell said:

this option is available for forums …

Says who?

Seriously, why do you make stuff like that up? It doesn’t say this in the Guides. You haven’t tried it out (as I just have with a standalone Commerce shop) or you wouldn’t make such claims. You have no good reason to claim this. If anything you might ask, whether the functionality might be connected this way across the apps. 

So again: The option is a Commerce option in connection with the Core (which handles registrations). It works completely independent from forums or any other app. And it is off by default as I now also checked again. So if you see this in your shop, you have limited your Commerce store yourself this way – probably accidentally. That can happen. But you can just acknowledge that instead of making false claims about it. 

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really you want to turn that rock? which guide and when was it published exactly?
what if i told you there wasn't one available to consult when we first started!
which you should be well aware considering the rep you've collected thus far,

you can challenge what im saying (not that you really need too!) go ahead waste your time too?
between the lines there you have just insulted two professionals; by all means continue..

show me how you disable forums module and able to sign up to eCommerce;
go ahead words are cheap; you've been challenged!

we have one of the few certified IPS developers working with our team the past three years now!
i dont have the time to make any of this up!
ooh... i'm also paying to reverse that!

i haven't seen any IPS officials claiming im full of hues thus far,


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27 minutes ago, Chris Bell said:

show me how you disable forums module and able to sign up to eCommerce;
go ahead words are cheap; you've been challenged!

the forums is not needed to charge to sign up, You could just create a package called sign up in commerce then force users to make that purchase when registering, No forums app needed as registration is in the core app


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Thank you Jackal,
we have contemplated this option as a workaround,
but i was overruled since there some other element that will be effected if we do so,
(i can dig my emails to find that particular correspondence and the reasoning it was not advised to peruse that route)

in practicality we lose customers who are unable to sign up,
putting out $0 package is "workaround" but not the solution as many wouldn't know what to do unless they were directly instructed to do so,




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1 minute ago, Chris Bell said:

Thank you Jackal,
we have contemplated this option as a workaround,
but i was overruled since there some other element that will be effected if we do so,
(i can dig my emails to find that particular correspondence and the reasoning it was not advised to peruse that route)

in practicality we lose customers who are unable to sign up,
putting out $0 package is "workaround" but not the solution as many wouldn't know what to do unless they were directly instructed to do so,


you could do loads $1 sign up fee to be a member or, Special 1 month vip $10, 1 year vip $80 etc etc the choice is yours, just fill in the product settings as you see fit

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it is in general what we want! and this is how we have it setup and working!
it is though a double edged sword; on the one hand we dont want people to willy nilly sign up to shop as if it was our forums,
on the other we do want them to be able to register when they are ready to place their order; the logical way IPS handles this bit is tricky,

as many try to checkout this way but fail many time completing this initial signup process as its conditioned by credit approval first,
un checking that option will allow robots and unwanted guests on our dedicated shop server which is not desirable for a secured environment like shop,

on the one hand there should some element like the one in place;  its currently too strict and unforgiving,
if a customer makes a mistake during that process he losses the info plugged in and cannot authenticate himself again to the same cart,
there's all kind of issues that come up when something isn't exactly by the book; and it happens more than often that customers miss something, or just take their time browsing eventually their cart will be lost as they are still guests until the whole processes complete and approved,



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imo what needs changing in this step is not pending initial registration to credit process approval; rather to email validation with shop account initiated!

customer shouldn't be able to sign up if they cannot post a valid credit card; but the account should be initiated when one does present a valid one!
yet completing a purchases shouldn't be the condition for completing initial signup in shop; when a CC can be verified account should be created regardless of order completion,



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