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ANNOUNCEMENT: New Forum Software Coming to the Site

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New Forum Software Coming to

Dear Community Members,

Over the past year or two, there have been updates to the environment that have introduced challenges in usability and performance. Efforts to improve the technology, user interface, and site performance have revealed weaknesses in the platform and outdated software this site uses. This has made it increasingly difficult and frustrating to support and upgrade to more modern reliable standards that users deserve. Our advertising experience and certain ad partners have further degraded the functionality of the site. This is not the experience we want for the members of this community.

Members want a fast site that performs well across all devices, to be able to find relevant and interesting content, and easily share through text, images, video, and messaging on a secure platform. Our goal is to provide this ultimate user experience to all members.

We will be implementing a new platform to better meet the needs of this community and allow us to provide support more efficiently. Our focus is to create a sustainable platform that performs well, and loads faster on all devices while offering seamless ways to search and connect. Technology is constantly innovating - by creating an environment that we control we can maintain the site with more frequent improvements and maintenance updates.

Although change can be difficult, we are here to support you through the process. We make every effort to review existing settings and make the changes needed so the migration goes smoothly. If you notice something doesn't seem correct once the site goes live, don't panic! We'll have a dedicated person monitoring as the site goes live to answer any questions and provide support through this change.

What's next?

I bet you're thinking, "What does this mean for me and the community?" It does mean change, but it will help solve a large majority of the issues that this site may have been experiencing. We have reviewed reported issues, site statistics, traffic data, and user feedback to help us prioritize the changes and improvements. Uploading an image or video will be easier and streamlined. Ad formatting will change with a new site layout. The site will be more responsive - there is no need to use a mobile skin or special app! Security and user privacy will continue to be a top priority.

When will this be happening? Soon! We recognize the user experience is slow and there are bugs from the outdated software. The sooner we can change that the better we can make the experience for you. You'll start to see activity related to cleanup in preparation for migration very shortly. We will post an announcement to the community prior to starting the actual data migration. Once the migration begins, the site will go into maintenance mode and will be read-only while data is being migrated.

We appreciate each member's contribution to this community and look forward to an improved experience for you all.

- Community Support
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I want to give you an update on the process I use once the site goes live with the new platform.

The night before the site goes live you will see an announcement from me that the site will be going live soon. Once the actual process starts, the site will be in read-only mode while the team does the migration from the old platform to the new one.

Once it goes live you will see an announcement thread created here in this section. All questions and feedback about the new platform should be posted ONLY in that thread.

  • You will see my reply to the thread introducing myself.[/*]
  • I will add a new signature and avatar to the admin account.[/*]

What should you be doing now before this happens?

  • Make sure your email address is up to date in your account.[/*]
  • If you don't remember your password, now would be a good time to reset it. Save the information.[/*]
  • The link that displays all your attachments in your user control panel will not be available, but all attachments will still be in your posts. It might be worth taking the time to save images that are important to you.[/*]

When Will This All Happen? is currently scheduled for September 13, 2021. HOWEVER, the schedule is very fluid, so that could change depending on any complications or schedule changes. I am simply giving you a heads up.

As your dedicated support, during the transition, I will be here with you multiple times a day, answering questions and listening to feedback.

My only request is that you remain patient with me while we work through the changes. :)

- Cricket
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New Forum Software Going Live Soon!

Dear Members,

Your new site will be going live soon! We are almost at the starting line and are really excited for you to experience the new community platform.

When the migration starts shortly, the site will be put into maintenance read-only mode (approximately 9 pm Eastern Time) while the migration is underway until completion. We will post when the process is complete and the site is live. We look forward to your feedback and first impressions in the "Community Feedback: New Forum Software Is Live!" thread.

You will have dedicated support to help you transition to the new format.

I will be here to answer your questions and help you every step of the way. :)

- Cricket

Special Note: To avoid any confusion, I will be closing this thread now. All new comments will be posted to the "Community Feedback: New Forum Software Is Live!" thread once the migration to the new software is complete.
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