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We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Marcus
    • By MSE Marcus 7th Oct 19, 7:26 PM
    • 1Posts
    • 81Thanks
    MSE Marcus
    Forum Announcement
    • #1
    • 7th Oct 19, 7:26 PM
    Forum Announcement 7th Oct 19 at 7:26 PM
    Dear MSE Forumites!

    Im Marcus and Im the Editor-in-Chief at MoneySavingExpert.com.

    I have some really important news to share with you and I hope you will all be as excited as we are here at MSE Towers.

    MSE Forums began almost 17 years ago and has become one of the UKs biggest communities. Its a lively, active place to share everything from MoneySaving tips to the best slow-cooker recipes. Were incredibly proud of what you, the Forumites, have built, and see it as an invaluable part of our wider mission to help consumers.

    For our regulars though, you will have noticed over the past few years that the bit we do the technology that supports our Forum - has been creaking at best, and completely broken at worst. Weve reached the stage where our present platform is simply unsustainable when it breaks, were not able to fix it.

    We want your Forum to live for at least another 17 years.

    So, weve made the big decision to significantly invest in a new platform which all of you will be moved across to. We aim to keep the best of the existing Forum, but tackle the frustrating bits that you tell us you dont like.

    To be clear, some things will change. But staying as we are is not an option, and the alternative would be closing the MSE Forums which we have no intention of doing.

    After many months of planning, research and an awful lot of meetings, weve found a new provider and work has started on the behind-the-scenes technology.

    Your new platform will hopefully go live in early 2020. But in the meantime, we need your help! Were looking for a top team of Forumites to help us with the finishing touches, especially the look and feel of our new Forum. If youre interested in becoming a member (there may be a Badge!) of the Fab-Forumite Feature Testing Group, please let us know by registering your interest here

    We realise some of you may feel apprehensive about all this. But closing the Forum simply wasnt an option to Martin, myself or the rest of MSE. That means, despite the challenges, were hoping you will embrace the new Forum.

    As always, we welcome your constructive feedback and keep your eyes peeled for regular updates from me and the Forum Team over the coming weeks.

    Marcus Herbert
    Editor-in-Chief, MoneySavingExpert.com
Page 6
    • tgroom57
    • By tgroom57 14th Oct 19, 8:34 AM
    • 1,375 Posts
    • 13,099 Thanks
    tgroom57
    What you need is to find out how many use

    1. MSE Competitions forum on a desktop.
    2. MSE Competitions forum on a mobile.
    3. Other MSE forums on desktop
    4. Other MSE forums on mobile.

    Because if you're asuming we're all doing this on a mobile platform you're wrong.

    • AndyCF
    • By AndyCF 14th Oct 19, 10:08 AM
    • 721 Posts
    • 2,341 Thanks
    AndyCF
    User agent strings provide that information @tgroom57 , or other addons can such as Google Analytics (afaik)

    I only use a desktop based browser, despite "loving tech" (yes really!) I only have a basic calls/text phone and see absolutely no need for myself to have a smart phone.

    I can cope without internet for an hour while I'm out!
    • cinders59
    • By cinders59 14th Oct 19, 12:53 PM
    • 5,824 Posts
    • 61,665 Thanks
    cinders59
    I hope for us old timers we can still enjoy the 'old view/format', if we wish.
    Originally posted by kpwll
    agree Old view format, I have had to use in chrome and do an add on extention of stylish to have the full page wiew with a lighter green colour.
    I have trouble with the blue screen and have to use desktop,
    Last edited by cinders59; 14-10-2019 at 1:56 PM.
    Thanks to all who post comps
    ITV winners membersclub#2
    • cinders59
    • By cinders59 14th Oct 19, 1:48 PM
    • 5,824 Posts
    • 61,665 Thanks
    cinders59
    This is the Green format:





    This is the Blue format:

    Originally posted by Cornucopia
    I have the green one but also have it filling the whole page up which I fine easier to read, Also when I commented on this post, it took me to my comment and had to go back to page 1 is this going to be the way it will go on all posts now?
    Last edited by cinders59; 14-10-2019 at 1:57 PM.
    Thanks to all who post comps
    ITV winners membersclub#2
    • Humdinger1
    • By Humdinger1 15th Oct 19, 8:21 AM
    • 123 Posts
    • 420 Thanks
    Humdinger1
    Marcus

    I know that spam buttons are open to abuse, or to mistaken use esp on a small mobile screen. However, there are numerous messages that are so plainly spam (subject, hyphen between every letter to avoid filters) that it would be good to be able to report them as spam with 1 click. Can you enable this pls? It would help the mods too I think. Thanks Humdinger
    • Flt. Lt. Biggles
    • By Flt. Lt. Biggles 15th Oct 19, 9:46 AM
    • 216 Posts
    • 104 Thanks
    Flt. Lt. Biggles
    Marcus

    I know that spam buttons are open to abuse, or to mistaken use esp on a small mobile screen. However, there are numerous messages that are so plainly spam (subject, hyphen between every letter to avoid filters) that it would be good to be able to report them as spam with 1 click. Can you enable this pls? It would help the mods too I think. Thanks Humdinger
    Originally posted by Humdinger1
    It's already there, and looks like this

    (old version)
    or this

    (new version)
    • bargepole
    • By bargepole 15th Oct 19, 3:32 PM
    • 2,609 Posts
    • 7,581 Thanks
    bargepole
    The whole question of viewing on a mobile or on a laptop applies to most websites, not just this forum.

    Far too many people (mostly millennials) think that they don't need a laptop, they can swan around tapping the screen of their smartphone, and access everything online.

    They really can't. Doing that is like looking through a keyhole into a room beyond the door, you can see some bits, but not the whole picture.

    To access this forum properly, you need a laptop, and preferably the green version, not that !!!!!!!ised ridiculous blue abomination.

    Please optimise the new site with all this in mind.

    I have been providing assistance, including Lay Representation at Court hearings (current score: won 40, lost 11), to defendants in parking cases for over 5 years. I have an LLB (Hons) degree, and am a Graduate member of CILEx, studying towards a Fellowship (equivalent to solicitor) in Civil Litigation. However, any advice given on these forums by me is NOT formal legal advice, and I accept no liability for its accuracy.
    • Ian011
    • By Ian011 15th Oct 19, 5:04 PM
    • 2,306 Posts
    • 1,447 Thanks
    Ian011
    As a regular forum user I would be hard pressed to identify what within the technical implementation of this forum is "broken". It is a quick loading site with an uncluttered layout. It is not bogged down by loads of widgets or layers of javascript. Content is presented in plain HTML and styled with CSS. It has a simple heirarchical menu structure and simple URL format.

    Please resist the urge to "make it look nicer" as that usually sacrifices usability and speed. The gold is to be found in the content, the actual written words, not in the page layout or colour scheme. Many other sites have overlooked this point over the decades and then seen their regular users desert in droves.

    EDIT: now seeing a post further up the page ... I use a wide-screen tablet with "desktop" User-Agent string in the browser settings and am on the Green Screen version of the site.
    Last edited by Ian011; 15-10-2019 at 5:08 PM.
    • pippo
    • By pippo 15th Oct 19, 5:36 PM
    • 3,657 Posts
    • 37,653 Thanks
    pippo
    I have the green one but also have it filling the whole page up which I fine easier to read, Also when I commented on this post, it took me to my comment and had to go back to page 1 is this going to be the way it will go on all posts now?
    Originally posted by cinders59
    Prefer Green
    • rwgray
    • By rwgray 16th Oct 19, 2:09 PM
    • 477 Posts
    • 7,226 Thanks
    rwgray
    I'm still enjoying my outdated interface, and hope the new one is as retro and unshiny as possible.

    With a search engine that works more than half the time...

    Rich.x
    • fifeken
    • By fifeken 16th Oct 19, 7:02 PM
    • 2,416 Posts
    • 1,256 Thanks
    fifeken
    Deleted - can't post image.
    • realaledrinker
    • By realaledrinker 17th Oct 19, 12:00 AM
    • 1,624 Posts
    • 567 Thanks
    realaledrinker
    15+ years a member and happy to use the Green version, as I do most days. By all means give the back ensd a boost but the UI for desk/laptops suits me and obviously many others just fine.
    Ethical moneysaver
    • D_M_E
    • By D_M_E 17th Oct 19, 11:33 AM
    • 2,799 Posts
    • 72,912 Thanks
    D_M_E
    I've found that, since this announcement, if I comment on a post once I click the post reply button, my post gets posted and I get logged out.
    • One-Eye
    • By One-Eye 17th Oct 19, 12:22 PM
    • 48,215 Posts
    • 7,380,145 Thanks
    One-Eye
    WORD LENGTH

    MSE currently only allows 50 characters in a word and then inserts a rogue space.
    For example, the long string in a google doc is 56 characters.
    In the example below MSE has inserted a space between 3fk and NPS, so the full link doesn't work.
    You have to do a "linky" when you get these long words, (and many don't know how to do this)


    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfDPvy6dgo6KvVfXfnAxpQPNmcT4iUcl1j5sYjL33fk NPSeIw/viewform

    Linky version of this link


    • GreenGreg
    • By GreenGreg 17th Oct 19, 10:06 PM
    • 147 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    GreenGreg
    I expect it will be worse, same as the "new design", ie harder to use, harder to navigate.
    • Spoonie Turtle
    • By Spoonie Turtle 18th Oct 19, 1:00 AM
    • 231 Posts
    • 141 Thanks
    Spoonie Turtle
    Currently using the green skin on my tablet (landscape, full site not mobile) for the 'jump to unread posts' button. I HATE the fixed width, and I HATE that it overrides my browser zoom; I actually quite like the blue but the jumping to new posts is the dealbreaker - and the fact that the blue automatically marks everything 'read' after each visit, even if I didn't get round to reading all the threads I wanted to.

    I just ... urgh. I zoom in, then I click a link, it loads slowly (and it is just this site) one size then resizes itself to fit the sidebar as well *even though it's only using half of my screen width*!! Then I have to zoom in again, on every single page, to make everything a comfortable size. If it resized to fit my screen it would be perfect, even in portrait orientation. That's how I use every other website ...
    • kippers
    • By kippers 18th Oct 19, 6:33 AM
    • 1,971 Posts
    • 6,041 Thanks
    kippers
    I use the old green version too as i like it better
    • beelzebomb
    • By beelzebomb 18th Oct 19, 10:26 AM
    • 308 Posts
    • 2,986 Thanks
    beelzebomb
    Please test and roll out gradually to a few users to test/provide feedback - I'm sure we are all aware of sites/apps (etc) that receive updates that prove unpopular, rushed, or badly tested, simply break or just drive traffic/people away.
    • MSE Tine
    • By MSE Tine 18th Oct 19, 4:46 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 417 Thanks
    MSE Tine
    Hi everyone!

    I've tried to answer what looks like the most asked questions you've posted - hopefully this should help clear up some of the things that you're all wondering!

    “The Forum doesn’t seem broken to me, why change?”
    o The truth is that the Forum is broken, even if much of it is on the back end out of sight. Some things are visible to everyone like search being less than efficient, the day light savings controls, the recent site crashes and so on. The code that runs things isn’t out of the box: it’s been added to by a lot of developers over time to get all the unique things we have which on other platforms are now “standard”. This includes our Comping tick and a lot of things that made us unique when we implemented them. As time has passed browsers and server technology have changed and more and more custom “hacks” have broken. We’re at a point where we simply cannot fix any problems.

    “Can we keep the green version/layout?”
    o Unfortunately we’re turning off vBulletin when we move over, but we’re working incredibly hard on taking the best bits with us from both versions into the new Forum. The look and the design of the forum will definitely be influenced by our Fab Forumite Feature Testing Group.

    “If you’re not keeping the Green/Blue looks what ARE you doing?”
    o As far as possible we’re trying to do a “lift and shift” of the functionality we currently have and making it look as similar as we reasonably can. There will be some changes, but we are hoping you will agree those turn out to be improvements.

    “Are you going to make the new Forum all about mobile?”
    o We’ve heard the rumours and can confirm they’re NOT true! Our clever design folks are working on the desktop design first and foremost, but yes the new Forum will be mobile friendly. That’s because tech has moved on and most are now created so they work on both and it won’t be to the detriment of the Desktop experience.

    “What Forum are you moving to? Can it cope with us?”
    o We are moving to a platform called Vanilla. After a lot of technical meetings, long nights with our product team looking at all the options this was the best software to meet our needs. We had very strong criteria of security, stability, support availability, uptime, functionality, design flexibility and being very blunt cost is also a consideration. This was certainly not the cheap option, but it was the best across most of our requirements and it was not a choice made in a rush, far from it we promise!
    And yes, they can cope with our volumes and back catalogue of posts We won’t be the largest Forum hosted by them, although I have a feeling we are heading for “biggest challenge” title quite quickly!

    “Stop allowing AE’s!”
    o All this new technology should make things easier for the Forum Team and includes new tools to allow us to address AE’s and rule breaking. Much of what is new will be behind the scenes to help us look after the Forums. We’re trying to keep the front end as similar as we can.

    “Please can we have/can you change/improve this:”
    o From day 1, when we go live, we are aiming for things to look as like for like as we can. There WILL be some changes to functionality, but we are trying to keep them to a minimum on the front end that you guys see. The Fab Forumite Feature Testing Group will be key over the next few months to this. When we go live we will continue to take feedback from the community and we will be able to make tweaks thanks to the new technology.

    “This is just to help you monetize the Forum isn’t it?”
    o Just to be clear – no.
    The Forums have always been provided free to our users with no advertising. Whilst we do use skimlinks they in no way come close to covering even a fraction of the cost of running or hosting the Forums (like not even SLIGHTLY ).
    MSE operates under a VERY strict Editorial Code set out by Martin many years ago and we are very clear about how we are financed. It's all here: https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/site/moneysavingexpert-finance/
    We are investing a really significant amount of money in future proofing the Forum for you. We’re doing that because we passionately believe the forum and the community lies at the core of MSE.



    Hope this helps! Have a great Weekend!

    MSE Tine
    Last edited by MSE Tine; 18-10-2019 at 4:48 PM.
    Could you do with a Money Makeover?


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    • MSE Tine
    • By MSE Tine 18th Oct 19, 4:49 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 417 Thanks
    MSE Tine
    If you still want to join the Fab Forumite Feature Testing Group then please fill in the form on the other thread before Sunday night as we will be closing it for more applications and cracking on with the next steps as quick as possible!
    Could you do with a Money Makeover?


    Follow MSE on other Social Media:
    MSE Facebook, MSE Twitter, MSE Deals Facebook, MSE Deals Twitter, Forum Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest
    Join the MSE Forum
    Get the Free MoneySavingExpert Money Tips E-mail
    Report inappropriate posts: click the report button
    Point out a rate/product change
    Flag a news story: news@moneysavingexpert.com
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