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Upgrade 2018 changes

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Custom User Titles

They have all been reset and will not return. For anyone with a banner, the default will disappear and be filled with the banner/s.

As such, I have reset the default userTitle ladder. If you wish to make cool recommendations, better than these, please add to the member discussion thread for this upgrade.

Present settings (post count):

Screen Shot 2018-08-08 at 11.49.55 am.png

The new article system is complete. Existing articles are converted, checked for links and textual issues, and should be all good. The purpose of this system is to be able to promote high quality new threads by converting them into articles and rotating them through the homepage.

Basically, if you write a new thread, something unique, that is quite well written, evidenced if appropriate, or cited as opinion / experience, and believe it is worthy of further attention, then you can discuss it with staff via contact system. Admins can additionally identify such content and take it upon themselves to convert and promote it.

Groups will build over time into small sub-communities. To start with, the private supporter group has been reset to groups as a private group. It is the only private group planned, with forum (existing private supporter forum). All future groups will be open, read-only, or semi-private.

You'll find the details on this help page, for Groups.

All groups beyond our special supporters group will have an admin as owner, specific staff will be given moderator access, and if requested by a trusted member (we deem that trust), we will make them a mod of the group so they can manage it themselves.

Note: Admins have zero restriction on entering groups.
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Donation Campaign

I have had to reset the current donation campaign due to the way the upgrade handled the past system, pretty much the cron job ran overnight and counted the past decade of donations as current. If memory serves me, it was around $2900, so I just made it $600 to finish out the year, splitting the difference.

Next year it will be back to normal, $3500.
Minor Policy Phrase Changes

I have changed some policy phrases to ensure there is no confusion throughout the site, using legal / legal policy, removing terms and rules. The legal document itself contains the word "terms" because within that document, terms are correct. The document is a legal policy, the document contains "terms" and "conditions" of use, that you agree or disagree to.

I have forced the acceptance of privacy and legal again, to ensure the changes are correctly reflected and that there is zero confusion. Evidenced that there should be zero confusion now:

Screen Shot 2018-08-09 at 6.39.43 am.png

Screen Shot 2018-08-09 at 6.38.21 am.png

The typography is now working correctly. There was an issue in its hierarchy, thus was not correctly rendering the right font or weights. Fixed.

The system caches have been dropped, I had to drop my browsers cache to grab the latest version to correctly show on my devices.
Members Online

You may notice there is now a difference in the numbers who is reported as online. See: Link Removed

Members and guests now tally who is online, robots are isolated out. I have further added additional mechanisms at the server to try and limit more noise to the site, ie. spam bots, rubbish bots, rubbish users that are not legitimate people in a web browser.

If you know my history with all this, I'm not a numbers man. More is not better for me, but quality is the aim. I am still striving for that, and with the way the new system works, it has helped me get closer to only showing quality visitors, real people, who are online.
RSS Disabled

RSS is pretty out-dated IMO, and usually just used for nasty things nowadays (ie. stealing content via scrapers), so it is disabled.
Account Upgrades

Account upgrades are now enabled again. The system now allows for subscription via a credit or debit card, no longer do you require a PayPal account for recurring payments.

You can only be part of one of the three options at any given time. Once you purchase one, the other two will disappear.

I am fault finding a new receipt system for this at present, but it will be available soon for past and future upgrades, where you can view and print a receipt if required.

I have not yet completed the account upgrades new help page, which will contain the features of paid sponsors.
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