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Everything posted by Lindy

  1. Lindy


    Yes, we had so many issues, so much support overhead and so much customer dissatisfaction with inconsistency and sloppiness prior to 4.5. We only provided cursory reviews for initial submissions and as is often the case, a new product (or resource) tends to start with a base and then future releases build upon that with enhancements. Without screening updates, we were missing some pretty significant issues that broke communities. Couple that with the disorganization of customers manually managing updates for resources, leaving their community in an unstable site with a hodge-podge of outdated third party code, we had to make a decision. Either limit the damage a third party resource could do to a community, which would mean removing some of the flexibility that makes resources so useful -- or exerting control over what's pushed through the Marketplace. We opted for the latter as it ultimately benefits the majority. The majority of contributors from a support and even, to an extent, piracy standpoint. Customers because the resources have far more stringent standards, are screened - even for upgrades - which can only increase confidence and stability in the product. IPS, because the support overhead is reduced due to out of date third party resources, poorly updated resources, etc. We recognize there have been a few bumps and I apologize for same. I have the utmost confidence and faith in this change. Regarding approvals, more information regarding the process for critical updates has been posted in the contributor forum - please be sure to follow that forum if you don't already. In short, there's a provision for critical updates. Normal updates should be expected to take 24-48 hours or so, which is typical of an app store based on my research.
  2. Lindy


    We underestimated how many would not follow or are otherwise confused by the new Marketplace guidelines. We're also surprised by the number of submissions that won't install at all or won't uninstall, thus indicating an unfortunate lack of testing. So, we didn't put in place provisions to better communicate pending status updates - but we are considering it now and your proposal is a fantastic idea, thanks. Do note, developers who do not follow the guidelines and have their submission rejected are pushed to the end of the queue unless it was a very minor error. This allows the team to more quickly process those who did in fact follow the guidelines, but does delay the rejected resource from getting to you, for which we apologize. There will some transition pains for both sides as we have never been in the position of taking a true no non-sense approach to the Marketplace before. It may take a bit of time to break old bad habits. 😉
  3. Anyone has a right to be disappointed, of course. We are driven by feedback, but there are times when the feedback is not going to coincide with the majority interest or that of our overall vision. The same relative handful of people regurgitating the same thing over and over is not constructive and will not change the outcome in any way.
  4. @Haku2 You have made your feedback on the changes very clear - over and over and over in multiple topics. You've frankly left the constructive feedback/criticism category and are approaching the noise station. I am personally, and we as a company, are aware of your concerns and feedback. We have heard you, even if there aren't immediate actions available and now, it's time to let it go and move on. @craigf136 Thank you for the feedback on this. It's a valid concern and one I'll take note of internally to ensure it's addressed soon.
  5. So, is the 20% commission that you are earning off the Marketplace purchases just an exaggerated number from some of the developers? It’s currently 10% and has not yet increased to 20% - we’ve left it alone in light of Covid and ironing out the new marketplace. That said, even at 20% it’s expected to almost break even. The marketplace operates at a net loss to IPS just because of the price point of most resources. So on. $5 resource, we get a $.50 commission - now, say that $5 resource has a chargeback that’s $20. So our net loss on a $5 resource is $20.50. That also means we need up to 40 more of those transactions in commission just to break even on the original transaction. There is also payout fees to pay the authors. The marketplace operates in the red even before considering the staffing. When you slice it up, you could see why apple takes 30% and never refunds their fees. Thats neither her nor there, my comment was reinforce we don’t make money in the marketplace - the opposite, so it’s ok if you use the authors site too. It’s just not ideal (for you.)
  6. I'm sorry for the disappointment and confusion here. As you likely know, the Marketplace has been shifted to the AdminCP in 4.5. Beyond that, IPS has taken an even more proactive approach for the ultimate benefit of the majority of customers. We have developed new guidelines, provide more in depth and stringent reviews for submissions and now, for all updates as well. With all of this, we are striving to provide a more seamless and stable experience. Part of this is ensuring you have the latest version of both the core software as well as third party software. We are aiming to help ensure that if you install something in the Marketplace in your community it will provide you with a far greater success rate than in the past. It will also help authors reduce support overhead allowing them to focus more on development and less on why a resource isn't working on a 2yr old version. With the majority renewing anyway (we would be doing something wrong if people running successful communities weren't also interested in properly maintaining them, right?), we didn't really anticipate a particularly negative response (although anytime we make any decision, there are always predictions of impending doom - nature of the business. 🙂) Interestingly though, there have been an alarming number of customers who have submitted a ticket that haven't renewed in some time, prompting the question "what would you even do with the marketplace anyway, nothing in it would work on the version you should have" and a quick investigation shows they have been using a "nulled" version of the core software (in a few cases, for 6+ years) and were sneaking in through the backdoor of the Marketplace. That obviously wasn't the intent of correcting the marketplace to work in the ACP based on license status and there are of course customers doing the right thing simply frustrated by the principle of this, but it's been an interesting byproduct for sure. For those acquiring resources from the authors directly, that is perfectly fine and entirely their/your decision. We don't net anything off of the Marketplace and if you weren't going to renew anyway, there is no net loss there either. We've kept provisions for manual installation of resources, but for the reasons mentioned above, it will generate an untested/unauthorized type warning because it's not within the Marketplace framework - which also means you will need to manually update. Beyond that, there should be no obstacles or barriers. I know I've said this before, but please understand that our company has dramatically shifted over the years and continues to evolve. At the risk of appearing brash, if you are expecting XF or Brand X prices, polices, etc. you may unfortunately find yourself continually disappointed as we have vastly different business models, an increasingly different demographic and the landscape of enterprise grade communities continues to demand more. We are certainly not intentionally shutting anyone out, but we do have to make continual decisions to grow the platform, create sustainability for the company and ensure we are hitting the mark for those keeping the lights on. In this case, we feel that most will benefit from a solid Marketplace with trusted resources, seamless installations and continuity in upgrades. We've made decisions we feel help us best achieve the goals, but we recognize there will always be some that disagree and that's completely ok (as long as we can agree to disagree when the time comes.) As noted by others, there are options for everyone out there - we want you to be happy and choose us as your platform provider, but if another provider would better meet your needs at price points that fit your goals, we completely understand. My apologies again to those aversely impacted. I have confidence that should you remain an active customer, any hesitation you may have about this will be far outweighed by the benefits of simplicity, ease of maintenance and stability.
  7. Good to see you around, Tiger. That is very... passionate feedback on the URL reset fee. Although it's been addressed before, I'm happy to do so again. Firstly, prior to limiting the resets, it was very easy to "license hop" - that is, swap URLs around, obtain support, upgrades, etc., swap them around and repeat, etc. So, while not necessarily the original intended purpose, it does help keep the honest... honest in the same sort of way that a deadbolt keeps the undetermined at bay--obviously, the determined/committed can kick the door in. Secondly, in many cases, there actually are costs incurred with fresh installations by way of support. Frequent URL resets are a byproduct of tossing ideas around, deleting, reinstalling, configuring and deleting. Quite often, there are numerous support requests involved and unfortunately, often the same questions/concerns over and over again on each reinstall. The spirit of tech support provided is based on a single installation and not so much to support 'tinkering' and perpetual reinstallation support. The fee, when applied, helps (in a small way) offset some of that overhead. I would hope a number of customers here would attest to the fact that we will generally just update the URL for you if you contact us - especially if you're just changing the URL on an existing installation. In cases such as those described above, the fee may apply. I'm sorry you consider it a barrier, but I can assure you, we're not funding private yachts from license reset fees. 🙂 Even with license reset fees, we frankly still typically tend to have a net loss when it comes to many of those (not all, but many) that kind of toss ideas out to see what sticks. You've been around a long time (for which we're appreciative!) - you're a power user (who still sees us as a 'forum provider') and you won't likely require much support throughout your tinkering journey. That's not usually the case here. Just drop us a note if you find you need to change the URL on file. We're generally able to help if that's all you need. Thanks for the feedback.
  8. I reached out to the author who said it will be updated for 4.5. Unfortunately, I couldn't answer your question about the tasks. CSRF protection should not prevent them from running, but I'm not familiar with the app and there could be other conflicts with 4.5. Out of curiosity, the app was disabled during upgrade and you re-enabled it -- correct? The only way to downgrade would be to do a full restore of the file structure and database.
  9. The AdminCP has new security mechanisms. That app needs to be updated to use CSRF protection - until it is, it will not work, unfortunately.
  10. In terms of downloading the resource archive, modifying and reinstalling - no, that is not possible, unless you purchase it directly through the author and install it as a custom app/plugin. Respectfully, that is a resource directory. As far as I know, they do not facilitate transactions like an app store (I'm told they instead direct to an author's site for payment) and I'm reasonably confident there is no official code or QA review as it has come up numerous times in sales inquiries from folks coming from XF, wanting to ensure that we do. That's not to take away from the value of the directory - it works for them (and you) and that's great. The majority of our customers have a reasonable expectation to trust that what they install from our Marketplace has been reviewed by IPS. If the Android approach works better for you - we don't take it personally. You have to decide what is important to you but you're not going to get the taste of Coke Zero in a Pepsi Max can (I prefer Coke Zero, if you were curious, but you may prefer Pepsi 😉) -- there's no point in choosing Brand A, if you just want it to mimic Brand B. The modern web landscape has changed significantly. There are a decreasing number of platforms that have "downloadable content." We are a point. click. install. done. society now and we've found that represents the mindset of the majority of our customer base, from personal all the way to enterprise. We've organically aligned ourselves with those who prefer and expect a more Apple-esque experience and thus, that's the direction we've been taken since the inception of Invision Community 4. We're comfortable and happy with that. We still provide the power of developing or installing applications independently of the marketplace (but there is a warning it's untested, use at your own risk, etc.) If you're using the Marketplace, we want to keep tighter control on that in the interest of security, stability and customer confidence and support. It also helps the authors which allows them to develop new and exciting things for you instead of spending that time providing additional support for installation, upgrades, issues surrounding out of date resources, etc. Poking holes back in the framework and slapping up downloads to essentially go backwards is not something we are considering at the present time, however, as I said, if the demand changes in the future, we will of course re-evaluate and if a change is warranted, we will do so in a sensible way.
  11. You're welcome and again - it's no problem. That's what I'm here for. 🙂 To answer your question, it would not prevent you from installing. That aspect is on the honor system (and who wants to risk losing their license from breaking the rules??), however, we would like to provide authors with the ability to determine how this works for their individual resources.
  12. Hi guys. I'm sorry for any confusion and frustration. This is something I personally insisted upon and it was done for a multitude of reasons. First and foremost, we want to really promote more harmony within third party applications. 4.4, because of its looser standards that did not require authors to use versioning/update notifications, ultimately allowed a hodge podge of current and outdated resources that would collide with one another (and the core) leading to unnecessary issues, customer frustration and support overhead. With everything managed within the AdminCP, you have easy access to updates - the same as the core software. Requiring Marketplace apps be installed through the AdminCP also helps ensure that what you're installing is the latest the author has uploaded, it was been reviewed by IPS (our process for this has changed and improved with 4.5 and we also screen upgrades now.) If we were to permit downloads and manual installation, you would get the warning that it is an untested resource (there are no provisions in the file itself that indicate it came from the marketplace), it would be installed outside of the Marketplace management/upgrade system and things like the support tool would warn you every time you use it that you're using an untested third party application. I understand the use case for 'localhost' development and testing. I would consider that a niche case at this point, but later down the line, we would be happy to, if demand dictates, explore potential ways to allow manually saving a file in a manner that ensures the file and account are validated and the file operates within the Marketplace framework. We have no immediate plans to consider that development expenditure at this time, however. You could reach out to the author as well with these rare circumstances, but to be honest, this change also helps them from a piracy standpoint, so they may not be willing to give up files to customers so easily and again, if they do, it would not be installed within the new Marketplace framework. I'm sorry again for the frustration and @Dean_ you're not being a nuisance at all. I completely understand your position. Again, should circumstances change in the future, we can re-evaluate. At this point, just slapping up the file again would defeat the entire purpose of the 4.5 Marketplace, so that's unfortunately not under consideration at this moment. @Paul E. I'm sorry that happened to you and we've found similar. Because of that, there are new development guidelines in place that authors must adhere to and we have become very stringent in what we will approve. @ibaker XF, to the best of my knowledge, doesn't even have an App Store/marketplace and they don't review any third party resource. That's respectfully an apples and oranges comparison. As a point of clarification, although you find things from Invision Community creeping into XF, we on the other hand have no interest in competing with XF. If I were to simplify the comparison in this case, they adopt more of an Android approach and we prefer the Apple approach. You can hack your Android up to pieces if that's your thing, but the beauty of an Apple device lies in its balance between power, simplicity and stability. Our core demographic has demonstrated time and again, they prefer and expect the Apple-esque approach from us. Respectfully, if Android is your thing, please don't make yourself angry and miserable by shoehorning your expectations into an Apple device and/or trying to turn Apple into Android. 🙂 Thanks for your understanding!
  13. Lindy

    Error Log Banning

    Could you please give an example of the error itself? Personally, I feel the error is more important than the person causing it.
  14. Naturally, we try to consider anything that gains traction, however, this goes against the grain of every aspect of life. No where else that I'm aware of, other than "old school" forums, are those that have been subjected to disciplined paraded in front of the public with a naughty tag. I'm not aware of any social media platform that indicates a user has been banned or disciplined. Imagine getting a sticker placed on your car after getting a speeding ticket to let the world know you had your hand slapped. We are not likely to incorporate any feature that promotes public humiliation of members. As a tip for moderation - if content is being reported and you find it rises to the level of banning a user, the usual course of action would be to remove the offending content. You cited letting users know someone has been banned so they stop replying, but removing the content would accomplish this as well. If you're insistent on this, please consider using a third party resource or custom user group is likely your best option. You are, however, likely going to receive a higher number of GDPR "right to be forgotten" requests if you start publicly shaming your members for moderation actions taken.
  15. Lindy


    Awesome! Thanks for the positive feedback - that's exactly what we wanted to hear! I'd love to take credit, but it's definitely not me - it's really a cumulation of an amazing development team, new processes and the addition of @Olivia Clarkto the team last year. I'm extremely proud of everyone at IPS; we're very fortunate! Thanks again. 4.5 is the best yet. 🙂
  16. I'm very sorry for the inconvenience, confusion and poor handling of this issue. Although this functionality has existed for quite some time, this was not identified as a widespread / abused issue until recently. When the growing concern was brought to management attention, we acted as quickly as possible. A red warning banner should display for anyone impacted; I apologize if it didn't for some of you initially. We have corrected the issue - pushing remote notifications to AdminCPs is not a system we use very often, so there was a kink. Once again, my sincerest apologies for the ball being dropped on this; it is, as you know, not typical of and we will do our best to ensure it doesn't happen again.
  17. We will be releasing a patch or update soon that disables the email feature altogether. In 4.5, the email share function utilizes the sender's own mail client (mailto - for you nerdy types) and does not pass through the software.
  18. It in fact should, but it is not. Please submit a ticket and we will take care of this for you. There is also now an internal report to address this.
  19. Coldfusion??? I think you may have already had a head start to cukooland before PBR came along. 😎 🧡
  20. You know you can use WHERE clauses in queries? I'm just kidding. Too soon?
  21. I am sorry you are frustrated, but your site does not in fact have "20,000 spam" posts. Your database may contain 20,000 additional temporary records, but your initial implication was your community was being overrun by spam suggesting the feature is allowing a moderation nightmare to occur and that, respectfully, is the very definition of hyperbolic. The feature is intended to promote engagement and reduce the initial barrier of such. I can understand if you are on shared hosting or a micro VPS with minimal resources how a bout of increased traffic and PBR submissions may present different challenges, but 20,000 - even 100,000 temporary records that will be removed if not authenticated should absolutely not pose an issue under normal circumstances. If 20,000 rows in the database is causing your site to noticeably choke, backups to be impacted and a concerning amount of storage to be consumed, I really believe there are deeper issues at play than PBR. We determined the maintenance period to be a reasonable amount of time between content submission and final authentication before determining the account is spam. You are welcome to suggest modifications to this in the feedback area. To answer your question, yes, you can shut the feature off and the cleanup of accounts and content will still occur. If you have any suggestions for improving the feature, you are again very welcome to post them in the feedback area. Unfortunately, I'm not sure what we can offer for your concerns at hand as again, the feature is intended to allow a path for guests to... post before registering. The posts are completely behind the scenes until they complete the registration, which requires validation and if that is not completed, the posts are removed.
  22. Have the background tasks completed? The tasks convert all of those old tags to proper HTML. If everything is done and the posts still aren't right, it's important you contact us as soon as possible to investigate. In the event a restore and reupgrade needs to be performed, you obviously do not want to let too much time lapse.
  23. This is a known issue that will be patched next week.
  24. Probably best to take this sort of thing to PM. I can confirm this as a valid alt account and purchase though.
  25. Brent, We appreciate the feedback! I certainly understand there are still some niche sites - notably certain techy/dev sites that still rely on to BBCode both because they find it easier and it’s what they know. The (comparatively) few still using it are very passionate about using it and we can definitely appreciate that. At the same time, the BB in BBCode stands for Bulletin Board. It was created long before WYSIWYGs in the 90’s by UBB. The web has since long evolved and with the advance of proper WYSIWYG technology, so BBCode is really rare to encounter. Be it Google Docs, email or virtually any modern editor, we all use buttons or shortcut keys like command-B as second nature, which works even with markdown. The real issue is the fact that it’s simply not native to any modern editor (that I am aware of) - including the one we integrate with, CKEditor. We have a backend “parser” that converts your BBC tags to HTML upon submission, but there is no way to convert that back for editing or any other purpose. To maintain overall stability as well as compatibility with editor updates, our only intention with Invision Community 4 was to ensure some degree of backwards compatibility for those who still use tags when submitting content. The software in fact does that and while BBCode will be deprecated (which simply means it will not be further developed) in a future release, we have no immediate plans to remove it entirely. While there are still traditional software packages that have legacy BBCode support, you will find that most modern community platforms have no native (built-in) support for BBCode and I think it’s extremely unlikely we will ever see it make a comeback (although I said the same thing about bellbottoms.) We are always open to ways to improve your experience with the editor and if you’re struggling to get things formatted properly using native functionality, we would welcome you to open a support ticket so we can see what you’re trying to achieve and try to offer some help. Thanks again for taking the time to share your concerns!
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