February Update: It’s a big one!
It’s been a while since we last did an update – and wow, do we have a lot to share with you!
First – some housekeeping about feedback and bug reports. (Skip down to ‘Notifications are here!’ if you just want to see what’s in the update).
Bug Reports / Feedback Tool
As we move into the final stages of Furry Network’s development prior to launch, we’re shifting gears for how we’re prioritizing feature requests and bug reports. Instead of collecting individual reports (and trying to catch as many bugs as possible), we’re aiming instead to prioritize these bugs / requests through user voting. This is so we can see which key issues are most important to you – and focus our attention on them!
Because we’re just about done with the big moving parts of Furry Network, we need your help picking the final items you’d like to see tweaked or fixed before we go live! We really value your feedback, and your input is critical to making Furry Network as awesome as it can be. So – please vote for your most requested features / bug fixes using the feedback tool, and we’ll do our best to implement them!
You can access the feedback tool here.
Help us pick what to finish before launch!
We’ve implemented a new tool for providing support on using the site, and to allow voting on features / bug fixes that you’d like us to focus on prior to (and after!) launch. You can find it in the ‘Support’ tab at the top of the page, or in the dropdown box by your user icon in the top right.
On it, you can easily vote for your favorite feature, suggest a new one that hasn’t been noted yet, or get support from other users and our admin team with using Furry Network.
Got a question, or need help?
Just type it into the text box at the top, and automatically suggested articles will be brought up. At the moment it’s mostly feature requests, but as people ask questions and the community (and our team) answer them, this section of the site should build up into a one-stop-shop for getting help with using Furry Network!
There’s a small dropdown – ‘Post In’, that asks you to classify your question or feedback – this is so we can answer questions quickly, and prioritize bugs and ideas appropriately for our development team. Please make sure you write your report in a style appropriate for the type of feedback you’re leaving. This is so your post can be made the ‘standard’ for that particular item:
If you’re not comfortable asking your question publicly, you can also hit ‘Private’ at the top of the form, and send in a ticket to our staff, who can answer you directly, as well as help you with any issues you’re having.
Notifications are here!
We got a LOT of feedback about the feed, and in particular the lack of notifications on Furry Network for things that happen to your content. We’re proud to announce that we’ve finally finished Notifications, which show up when people fave your stuff, leave a comment on one of your submissions, mention you in a comment, or a bunch of other events. Look for the little alarm bell symbol on the top right, next to your icon. There’s also a ‘view all’ option, so you can see it in a larger list format too:
What other event types would you like to be notified about? Did we miss any? Let us know!
Escape ‘confirmation email’ Purgatory
….By having the option to back out of your registration and pick a different email address!
If you’re having trouble getting the welcome email, or if you mis-typed your email address, it can be a pain to try and get back on track – so we’ve made it easier for you.
Because we all have fat fingers and hungry email servers, sometimes.
Play ‘Inbox Zero’?
You can now see a count of how many items of each type are in your feed, which live updates as you remove items:
Individual items can be removed from your feed, like an inbox:
Of course, you can also hit ‘delete all’, and get to Inbox Zero right away. Feels good, right?
We’re considering some more tweaks to how the Feed works, including a more traditional ‘page of thumbnails’ view. This is where we need your input: make sure to vote for this feature in our Feedback Tool if you want to see it made, or suggest an alternative if you can think of something better!
You can now make your profile page yours – with fully customizable fields, and the ability to embed images, links and other things into each section! Don’t want to specify your gender, orientation or any other field? Delete it, or rename it and turn it into something else!
If you previously wondered “Where did my bio go?” on your profile – well, here’s where it went – and now you can change how it’s presented to suit your needs!
You can use the same markdown we support across the site, a list of which is available by clicking on the ‘Markdown Available’ link. Here’s a cheat sheet, for your convenience:
We’d like to add the ability to embed icons and make lists of other users (Eg, list your friends / favorite artists on your profile), but need your votes to make sure that’s what everyone wants! Be sure to vote for this using our feedback tool. We imagine that copy-pastable templates to achieve certain goals will be popular – so if you have a pretty layout or useful feature that’s tricky to get right in Markdown, please consider sharing it!
Flagging & Takedowns
Our on-site ‘Flagging’ system for reporting content or users to our moderation team is alive and well – please continue using this tool for specific things that are an issue on the site, like submissions and users. The feedback / question tools above are intended to be an extension of the existing flagging tools, not a replacement – as flagging is really good at quickly dealing with things which are a problem, that need rapid turnaround!
In addition, you’ll notice a new link, “Takedown”, right below the ‘Flag’ button – this is a quick link for artists to request stolen artwork be taken down. This means that you don’t need a Furry Network account in order to resolve an art theft issue – and allows us to quickly take appropriate action. Making the process of rights management for artists easier is something we’re committed to improving!
View Counts, Faves and Promotes
Submission pages now show how many views, faves and promotes each image has received – finally you can see how popular your submissions have been!
We’ve also added quick previews for favorites, promotes, comments and view counts that show up on thumbnails – let us know if you like them!
Of course, the view changes to suit tablets and mobile devices – showing them on each image without having to click on them with the mouse you don’t have:
We’re committed to making Furry Network a pleasure to use across all devices. Be sure to report bugs if you see them!
Change your Email Address
Life happens, email providers come and go, and we all outgrow that Hotmail account with the embarrassing username we made when we were 15.
Now you can change the email address associated with your account, directly from the site, under ‘account settings’.
Our commissions feature is now mostly complete, and we’re putting it through some thorough user testing. Our approach is going to be to scale up gradually from a few early users to a broader selection of artists and commissioners – much how we did beta keys for access to the site initially. Because money is involved, we’re going to take it slow and make sure it’s bulletproof before we launch it to the general public!
Are you interested in testing out our commissions feature? We’d love to have you on our team. We’ll be opening up to a wider selection of beta testers in the near future – keep an eye out for an announcement, and an application form!
Here’s some of the features we’ve been tweaking over the last few weeks:
Both commissioners and artists can flag a commission for staff attention, whether it be because the artist is nonresponsive, the commissioner is causing issues, or if the commissioned piece does not meet the agreed to scope of work:
Dispute resolution and support is a big focus for us – the flag reasons and all content in these GIFs are placeholder content, and will be updated to be more directly relevant to the commissioning process as a result of our user testing. We’ll be soliciting feedback as we go, and keeping our eyes open for unique situations and how we can adapt our tools to best suit everyone’s needs – but for now, consider them a work in progress!
Open For Commissions? Announce it!
Showing potential customers what you can do and that you’re available for commissions is an important part of marketing yourself as an artist – and have pulled out all the stops to make it easy to do, and show your best work to your potential customers.
For users and commissioners, we want to make it easy to choose if you wish to see these or not – and as such, we now have a specific “announcement” category in your Feed, so you can choose to hide these if you just want to browse. If you’re hungry for a commission and want to see announcements only, you can do that too!
Know when artists open for commissions
You can receive an email notification the moment an artist you follow opens for commissions:
Evalion is one of our current commissions guinea pigs – if you’d like to see what the notifications look like, hit up his Furry Network profile and get notified!
See all artists open for commissions
This is still a work-in-progress, but we’re working on a tool that’ll let you see a list of all artists that are open for commissions right now, along with their price sheet and examples of their work. For now, we’ve put it as a filter on the Users tab:
We envision being able to browse for someone you can commission right away, without having to wade through endless journals. Having a one-stop shop for satisfying that Commission itch is, we think, going to be huge.
- Users can now get notifications when an artist is open for commissions
- Artists can now display commission announcements in the What’s New feed for those who follow them
- Commission payouts through PayPal are now functioning
- Custom bio fields are now live on character profiles with markdown supported
- Notifications center is now live to alert users of activity on their content
- Fixed issue with site not loading in Firefox (the ‘Grey Screen’ bug – thanks Forfaox!)
- Updated registration page to cancel an in-progress verification if email address is misspelled
- Takedown process now links to the appropriate forms from artwork and photos across the site
- Users can update email addresses in Account Settings
- Made updates to the popular algorithm to pull all time content if search results yield less than 100 results
- Commissions can now be flagged for admin review
- A bunch of other admin-side features
We hope you’re as excited as we are for how the site is shaping up, and look forward to hearing your feedback (and votes!) on our Feedback Tool, while we guide the site through to its final completion and subsequent launch. Thank you for being so patient with us through all this – we know how eager you are to get started on making Furry Network as awesome as we know it can be!
-Varka and the Furry Network team