1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Important! Forum Features, Limitations, Bits and Bobs

Discussion in 'About Arkadia Forums' started by Admin, May 30, 2011.

  1. Admin

    Admin Forum Administrator Staff Member PAF Administrator

    Likes Received:
    Trophy Points:
    Hi everyone!

    I thought i'd throw this thread up to go over some of the key questions that have arisen about the forums since their launch. I apologise for the length of the post, but please have a read as it should hopefully cover any questions about why the forum works a certain way.

    This thread will cover the following topics:
    • General
    • Styles / Skins
    • Thread Subscriptions
    • The "What's New" Button
      • Cookies
      • Database Method
      • Workarounds
    • Images
      • Method 1: Upload as Attachment
      • Method 2: Using the Gallery
      • Method 3: Using Firefox
      • Side note
    • Subscribing to Threads or Forums
    • Reputation System
    • Gratz System
    • Problems with logging in
    • Thread Locations
    • Premium Membership
    • Advertising on Arkadia Forum
    • Avatar Ranks, Post Counts etc
    • Administrators, Forum Officials, and Moderators

    1. The forum runs on vBulletin 4 platform, and as such the changes that can be made are limited.
    2. Arkadia Forum is not trying to be like any other forums you have been. We do things a little differently around here and there are valid reasons for it :)
    3. The features and modifications you see on the forum have been included to make your time here more enjoyable. Some features, while present on other forums, will not be included for various reasons.

    Styles / Skins
    Arkadia Forum defaults to a dark background, light foreground skin. If you don't like it, you can change your skin at any time by scrolling to the bottom of every page and using the style chooser drop down menu.

    If at any time you come across something that doesn't look right (ie. Black text on black background), then feel free to let me know so I can look at fixing it. Keep in mind though, certain browsers, namely Internet Explorer, are prone to more 'weirdness', and there is very little I can do to rectify any issues. I suggest using a different browser such as Chrome or Firefox.

    More info on browsers can be found here

    Thread Subscriptions
    Automatic subscription to threads you post in is disabled by default. If you feel you need this feature, you will need to turn it on in your Settings -> General Settings. Look for the dropdown list for "Default Thread Subscription Mode:". Choose the most appropriate way to subscribe through here.

    Alternatively, you can subscribe to a thread when you create a reply in "Advanced Editor", so instead of using the Quick Reply box, click the "Go Advanced" button. This will give you a heap of extra stuff for formatting.

    The "What's New" Button
    The What's New button shows a list of threads which contain posts you have not read before. There is some confusion about how this works and why it has been chosen to work like this. Allow me to elaborate.

    vBulletin comes with pre-defined methods for handling new posts. It is either cookie based, or handled by the vBulletin database. There are pro's and con's for each method, however we have opted to use the database option.

    This method will show a list of threads that you haven't fully read, and when you have read them it will show them again as "non-bold". This is the way other forums work, but cookie handling tends to drop off, or more accurately, "Mark as Read" forums that you haven't visited in some time (less than a day in some cases!).

    This method seemed too hit and miss.

    Database Method
    This method stores in a separate table all of the threads and posts that you have read, meaning that your list of unread posts will not vary if you were to visit a week later, keeping you up to date with everything you missed.

    On the slightly negative side of it, if you create a thread or a post, the database assumes you have read it - and rightly so, you wrote it! :D

    This method was a far more accurate way to keep up to speed with your threads.

    If you find that at some point you made a reply, and you can't see it in the What's New listing, you can use the Spy feature. Your post will show there.

    Alternatively, you may want to click the link "Today's Posts" which will display a list of threads that were updated in the last 24 hours.

    This can be one of the more confusing parts of the forum, but once you've understood the key drivers behind the image handling, you'll master it and love it.

    Images can be handled by 3 separate methods, each of which is personal preference, and each have their pros and cons.

    Method 1: Upload as Attachment
    If you want your viewers to have a thumbnail, which when clicked opens a popup overlay window, you can use this method. This can be done by clicking the "Manage Attachments" button when you're in the Advanced Editor mode (not a quick reply).

    Method 2: Using the Gallery
    You may wish to have an album containing your images. This can be done through the link "Gallery" at the top of the forum. Once you have uploaded your image to the appropriate area of the gallery, then make sure you use the url of the image itself, and not the url of the gallery. By this I mean right click the image, choose "Copy Image URL" (or whatever the equivalent is in your browser), and then use that in your post.

    Method 3: Using Firefox
    By far the best method for uploading images direct to your post. You must run firefox or IE8 or better to use this. Simply click the Insert Image icon in "Advanced Mode" editor, and then either upload it from your computer, or click the "URL" tab and do it from there. The forum will download a copy to its server if it is hosted elsewhere.

    This method will also allow you to do some cool layout options, such as having text wrap around the image etc. Play around with these until your image looks right.

    Side note: We do not promote Hotlinking. Hotlinking is not fair on the server you have your image hosted on. This is additional traffic that THEY must pay for. We prefer that all images on Arkadia Forum are hosted at Arkadia Forum in some way, shape or form. Please make every effort to host your images here.

    More information on hotlinking can be found here.

    Subscribing to Threads or Forums
    The default method for subscribing to threads is "Do Not Subscribe". If you want to subscribe to every thread you post to, then you will need to turn this feature on in your Settings. The alternative method is to choose to subscribe on a case-by-case basis through the Advanced Editor.

    Reputation System
    The reputation system is there to show your appreciation for a post you like. We encourage you to use the reputation system, keeping in mind that everyone has taken the time to voice their opinion on something, and if you agree with them then why not show your appreciation and hit the reputation button.

    More information can be found here.

    Gratz System
    The Gratz system has been installed to provide an alternative to posting your congratulations. This is a one-click process. This makes posting a simple "Congratulations!" a pointless exercise and can clutter threads. Ideally, you would just gratz someone on a HoF or whatever, and unless you have anything additional to say, then a gratz should suffice.

    The gratz system will be active in only the Hall of Fame area, and any other relevant forums where a congratulation would be needed.

    Problems with logging in
    Some users have experienced problems logging in from the front page. This is a known issue and there is no work-around for it that I am aware of. What I can tell you is that when you login from the front page, it will welcome you, then jump to the front page with the all too familiar login screen again. If you click on the Forums tab, it will in fact show that you are logged in. Returning to the home/front page will confirm this.

    Thread Locations
    To maintain a good clean forum, we encourage you to post your threads in the correct Forum or Subforum. Most needs are catered for, so please take the time to identify the right place for your threads. This saves our invaluable moderators a lot of time sorting and moving threads around. Thanks!

    Premium Membership
    Premium Memberships are available for purchase. They allow you to do a few more things in the forum. We also accept payment for memberships with in-game PED.

    More information on how to become a premium member can be found here.

    Advertising on Arkadia Forum
    If you have an event that you want advertised, see our advertising thread here. You can also pay for advertising with in-game PED.

    Avatar Ranks, Post Counts etc
    You may have noticed some users have a badge under their name with "Gold Member" or "Moderator" etc. These are defined by the usergroups people belong to. If you become a Gold or Platinum member, these badges are included in the subscription.

    There are also other ranks under your avatar name. These are based on your post count. More information about this can be found here.

    Administrators, Forum Officials, and Moderators
    These users have extra power to manage the forums effectively. They are able to clean up posts, move threads, and generally keep the forums a nice place to be. Without their tireless efforts we would all be lost!

    We are not taking applications for moderators. Should the need arise, we will be short-listing a few potential candidates who have demonstrated the following:
    1. Good, positive character
    2. Well liked in the forums
    3. Is not too controversial
    4. Can be fair and just
    5. Is honest and considerate to others
    6. Is an active and regular participant in the forums
    • Like Like x 1