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Thursday, May 6th, 2010 09:53 pm
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
If you use NoScript, you may be facing some issues with Dreamwidth: http://dw-nifty.dreamwidth.org/7596.html?style=mine

Also, a poll on paid features and some notes about the state of Dreamwidth as a business have been published on dw_biz:


more on this )

Also, it looks like Mark has created a demo of an image posting system. See it here
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Last entry had a lot of comments, and the results of the poll surprised me. [BTW, if you found that poll interesting, you may be interested in this poll. [personal profile] holyschist is interested in your responses.) A clear majority (~60% at present) of the poll results cited a 'dearth of active comms' as the major factor impeding DW growth (among those who believed there was a growth issue). I was actually surprised by this stat. I expected the other options to be more popular.

So then, I ask a followup question (to those of you who checked that option last post, or who believe there is one, even if they did not cite that as the major factor):

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 40

If you believe that there is a dearth/lack of active comms on DW, what do you think is the major reason?

View Answers

Moderators who lack social capital (moderator is not high profile enough to attract an initial core group)
2 (5.0%)

Comm duplication (i.e. identical or very similar comm already flourishing on LJ)
29 (72.5%)

DW users less interested in using comms
3 (7.5%)

Moderators don't promote comms enough
1 (2.5%)

Can't crosspost to other services with comms
0 (0.0%)

More difficult to import comms
3 (7.5%)

Some other reason which I will explain in comments
2 (5.0%)

a summary of the discussion )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Been busy translating some stuff, although I am planning to put up some links about the latest Facebook events.

Hmm, at this point a lot of my thoughts about LJ's latest scandal regarding the Driving Revenue/Outboundlinks stuff can be summed up by this animated .gif. Here are tips on dealing with the issue, in case you haven't heard already.

Also, there's a comm on DW dedicated to creating exclusive content for DW for three weeks. Since most of the content in this blog is original and not cross-posted to anywhere else, I guess you could say I'm already 'participating.' Anyhow, this campaign makes me wonder whether it is true that one of the impediments to DW growth is that there is a dearth of original content on DW?

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 55

What do you think the main factor impeding/slowing DW growth is?

View Answers

Lack of DW-exclusive content
6 (10.9%)

Dearth of active comms
33 (60.0%)

Invite code system
3 (5.5%)

Insufficient publicity
1 (1.8%)

Something else which I will detail in comments
12 (21.8%)

charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Was looking at the activity stats on DW and IJ:
cut for length )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
1. Dreamwidth is seeking to raise at least $50,000 to replenish reserves. They're looking from some ideas; I didn't really have any that were original (merch, have some kind of paid account sale). Anyway, if you have any good ones that don't involve more features, they'd be interested in hearing from you.

2. http://www.livejournal.com/games/ Looks like LJ has some sort of partnership up. No idea on what the final form is going to take (it hasn't been announced yet IIRC), but so far it appears that, like the classifieds, there isn't much integration of these games into LJ.

This does seem to be somewhat of a missed opportunity, because LJ is in a way a social network, and the integration of social networks and gaming has proved quite lucrative for some parties (although not always ethical). However, without any integration, either of the social graph (i.e., invite your friends, be notified if your friends join), or of actual in-site gaming (gaming is integrated into the site/notifications system), or of payment (using the in-development LJ Wallet or something? I know Facebook is working on some credits system, which people will probably be able to use in their game purchases), I don't think there's any real advantage for either party that wouldn't be gotten from simple banner ads or whatever.

So what games would work well with LJ/DW style sites? rambling on this topic )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Time for a poll: all are free to participate!

Poll #2464 Poll on Blog/Journal Usage
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 78

Describe your usage of Dreamwidth

View Answers

I post in my Dreamwidth journal on a regular basis
67 (85.9%)

I have a DW journal, but don't post in the journal itself, but use it only to read other journals and comment
6 (7.7%)

5 (6.4%)

Describe your usage of Livejournal

View Answers

I have a Livejournal, and I post in it regularly
10 (12.8%)

I have a LJ, but only post in it crossposts from DW
38 (48.7%)

I have a LJ, but only use it to read other journals/comment
17 (21.8%)

I don't have a LJ, or if I have one, I never log in and never use it
5 (6.4%)

Something else not covered here
8 (10.3%)

What other blogging services do you use?

View Answers

Other Livejournal Clone(s) [Insanejournal, Journalfen, etc)
13 (28.9%)

Self-hosted Wordpress
18 (40.0%)

6 (13.3%)

1 (2.2%)

17 (37.8%)

3 (6.7%)

Other type of blog (elaborate in comments?)
11 (24.4%)

charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
There's a suggestion on the DW Suggestions comm about automatically putting in a LJ OpenID login form when posts are crossposted to LJ. I'm in favor of the general sentiment that OpenID is not really intuitive to the average user, and inconvenient besides (especially compared with Facebook Connect and the Twitter login), though I'm not sure this is the only way to deal with the issue.
more on this subject )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
My suggestion about posting via the MetaWeblog API has gone live. If you also think it would be good if DW were to implement it, vote yes.

So far the suggestion hasn't provoked much discussion, because it's rather technical, although there have been some 'no' votes, although I'm not sure why people are against it (not worth the effort, maybe, in their opinions? Flaws in the metaweblog API?)

I think in general, it will benefit Dreamwidth to be more interoperable, especially involving interoperability with sites that are dissimilar in format and provide functions that DW can't and probably won't replicate, such as Delicious.
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Is there a technical reason why the blog posting thing at Delicious (it will automatically crosspost a daily digest of your delicious links) doesn't work with Livejournal or DW without the usage of an external script?

(Asking for a friend who wants to cross-post a digest of daily Delicious links to Dreamwidth)

DW users 'smug'?

Thursday, February 18th, 2010 06:10 pm
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Is the 'smugness' of some Dreamwidth users causing 'tension between the two sites'?

What's this all about? I recognize the username from somewhere or other. I'm not so sure about 'tension between the two sites,' as probably most LJ users have never even heard of Dreamwidth.
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
1. Very informative post about upcoming features at DW.

To wit, there is

a) discussion of the cross-site reading list. It will be a paid user feature, it will only show the last 100 entries and be updated every 60 min, and the entries from the other site will ONLY be visible to the person subscribing to them (even if they are public otherwise).
b) in the future, it will be possible to upload communities to DW, if you are a maintainer (and probably, you should also get permission)
c) the new entry posting page: the 'metaphor' underlying posting will be changed, to incorporate new drafting options,

Anyway, someone has already protested the cross-site reading list, perhaps unaware that RSS/ATOM allows people to read LJ-entries off of LJ. Maybe someone ought to point out to this person that they can at least disable syndication of entry content in RSS/ATOM on LJ? They can't disable it totally, though (if they don't like the fact that they can't totally disable RSS, then they should stop using LJ, because that's how things are there).

EDIT: It seems that DW will actually not be using authenticated RSS for this new feature: http://dw-news.dreamwidth.org/17591.html?thread=1814455#cmt1814455

2. I mentioned the Salmon Protocol in my last post. Here's more info on the subject.

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/salmon_protocol_for_distributed_aggregated_content.php <--Read Write Web post on the SP.

http://salmon-playground.appspot.com/ <-- A prototype of the Salmon Protocol

http://www.alevin.com/?p=1806 <-- Blog post about the problem Salmon is meant to solve.

http://groups.google.com/group/salmon-protocol <--The Google Group for people working on the project. Rather technical.
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)

Watch out for suspicious phishing emails spoofing Dreamwidth pages. Dreamwidth is under attack by trolls which are attempting to compromise site security and have convinced Paypal not to allow Dreamwidth to use their services. (It seems that Paypal has a problem with some adult content) Anyway, though, DW will be setting up with another credit card processor in the future, so in the future it should be possible to make credit card payments again.

Let's hope that the trolls get bored and go away soon.


Sunday, December 13th, 2009 01:12 pm
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
More information on revised LJ advertising policies

And, [personal profile] vito_excalibur talks about why she is going to stop posting to DW: she crossposted to LJ, and all the discussion stayed on LJ, so she sees little point in continuing to post at DW. (LJ crosspost here)

She goes on to say: "So DW improves the medium part of the LJ clone social medium, and it doesn't matter that much, because the social part is much worse. I think it might still come to work, FSVO working; but the window is narrowing on that possibility." [I think FSVO='for certain values of'?]

She argues that DW has mostly removed negative aspects of LJ (as it currently is), rather than adding things which would convince people to switch. DW as it stands is not enough of an improvement to get people involved in fandom to switch to DW, it seems. I would argue that this is correct for many people on LJ. DW is simply not enough of an upgrade for most. Possibly this is because the people left at LJ are there for the content/social, not for the media, and that people who choose blogging/social media software based on the features have already left.

Anyway, when reading her post I was confused why V_E argued that DW only had a limited amount of time to get people to switch, and I asked her about this point. So it seems that she has eventually concluded that the idea of an LJ fork is itself flawed.

I think to some extent this may be so, but that at the same time, many people are using in fairly large numbers message boards, IRC, etc., even though this tech has been obsoleted, so DW I think can still have a larger stable userbase that it does currently. (It's sort of plateaued at around slightly under Insanejournal's daily userbase)

More notes:
Talking more about the post )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
1. Give your two cents on how many icons you would want in an ideal world.

Actually, my honest answer would be "around ten or so, but I can even make do with one," so my use case is so far from what's being discussed there that it's not even funny. XD I suck so hard at making icons (I was trying to make some Ravages of Time ones, but the art really doesn't shrink down well) that I was all like "bleh, might as well just stick with this wol." For me, as a paid feature, polls are more important than having multiple icons. (And I don't really use those that much either... I must say, honestly for me, the paid features of an LJ/fork/clone don't really impact my daily usage of the site.)

I use Tumblr and Posterous (and Disqus to comment on Tumblr) and honestly, I don't really care that on those sites I can have only one icon. Heck, right now on my default layout on Tumblr, you can't even see my icon in the posts there.

2. A blogger remarks, re: FB's enhanced granular privacy features that they aren't really about privacy, but about publishing and competing with Twitter, which is an interesting hypothesis. Seems a bit far fetched, though, to claim it's also with Wordpress.

I wonder if this means that other platforms will begin to incorporate granula privacy in a manner similar to FB's implementaton of it?

Anonymous Suggestions

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009 09:17 am
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
It seems like the request for anonymous suggestions at the suggestions comm has gathered quite a bit of support, although some of that is because there's a separate problem in there (namely, the way currently you can't set the option to turn off notifications when making the suggestions, although you can by editing the post afterward).

Personally, I think that while anonymous suggestions themselves are not very harmful, and there seems to be no compelling reason against the feature itself (this is my usual rubric for voting against a suggestion, whether I think there's a compelling reason against it. (Why is it necessary to know who someone is? I don't know who most of the suggesters on dw_suggestions are anyway) Whether I would use it or not use it is fairly immaterial to me, because as like... a person who uses only one icon, I doubt my use of the service is representative. XD However, if it seems totally an edge-use-case thing, though, I may sometimes vote against it), I'm not sure the problem complained about exists to such a great extent, and also, the logistical arguments against it seem compelling. Perhaps a better idea would be a non-technical solution to an essentially social problem, namely, opening up a comm where people could anonymously submit suggestions in the comments or something, and interested parties could take them and post them to the suggestions comm.

The thing is, I'm not so sure there are so many people who are unwilling to bring up their suggestions publicly? Are there really? And even if there are some, isn't the nature of suggestions that often another person will come up with the same idea and propose it? What I think it more likely is that people may hold back on suggestions that may be seen as unpopular, which is another problem, but a somewhat separate one. On the other hand, I guess I would think "meh, I know this suggestion is going to be unpopular, so why bother to suggest it if it's just going to get voted down into oblivion?" and that would apply whether I was putting it under my own name or not.

I think the dw_suggestions comm is, if anything, more open than the LJ suggestions comm, also, possibly because DW is seen as a work in progress.
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
[personal profile] morineko has some thoughts about Dreamwidth possibly being too fandom-centric to attract non-fandom potential users, and how the front page may be giving visitors the wrong impression. Although the definition DW users for a 'creative artist' might be a very broad, it does sound like the site is something like Deviantart, or a writing community. (For the record, I am totally not an artist...) IIRC LJ's marketing angle was about "sharing your life" w/ your friends, so this does mark a departure. (Right now, the site emphasizes that it's versatile and can be used for many things) I suppose also, since the word "blog" isn't used, it's not exactly clear what kind of site it is (I think these days people might not be sure what journal refers to).

more talking )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
1. In comments, [personal profile] stealthily asserts that Dreamwidth does (well, actually will) have a 'killer app': bug 710, cross-site authenticated friends page reading. This feature (as stated in the specs) will allow DW users to see their LJ friends lists on Dreamwidth, including whatever locked entries they can view.

Personally speaking, I'm unlikely to use this feature as I'm comfortable using several different sites, and because I deleted my main LJ journal, and now keep a smaller one whose content is very different from this journal's. However, this feature will be a great boon for those with large LJ friendslists, and will probably be welcomed by the DW userbase.

I'm not sure at all what LJ/SUP will think about it, but I kind of suspect it'll cause some angst among the LJ userbase, especially as there seems to be some caching on the DW end, and because it's specifically targeted to read locked entries. Will it really be the killer app? Maybe, but not necessarily, IMHO. It will probably be most useful for those who have something to read on DW already, or those who already maintain a DW and crosspost to LJ. Plus, a lot of people have switched off their syndicated feeds on LJ for privacy reasons. What do you think?

2. Been poking around Cyrillic LJ (more detailed report to follow soon)
Read more... )
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
[personal profile] azurelunatic posts her criticisms of the way the LJ QotD/Writer's Block responses are collected and published on LJ news. I totally agree with her about the lack of netiquette here. They need to make the system more transparent, perhaps by putting a box that will let you opt out of publicity on the QotD form.

Currently, the Question of the Day/Writer's Block is not a very widely utilized feature of LJ. Around 600-2000 people seem to participate in each question. This seems to be a feature also shared with Six Apart's Vox.com (Vox, BTW, doesn't seem to have become too successful, despite its media features and all the resources Six Apart poured into it. I wonder why? Of late the site seems not to have released many new features. Stagnating? Or 'finished'? Interestingly, the popular tags make it seem as though it is dominated by discussion of Japanese pop stars.)

[Also, did it strike anyone, that besides the cutting thing, that the news post otherwise seems poorly designed? Whoever makes the LJ news posts now doesn't seem to know much about web design, or even HTML, judging from the amateurish table. Why does someone who doesn't know design in charge of creating the newsletter? Isn't that well, an integral part of a newsletter, especially one highly focused on graphic content? As it is now, the photos are even cut off when viewing the comm in its own style. (IANADP: I am not a design professional)]

Anyway, speaking of new features, Dreamwidth has created a latest posts page, which shows recent public posts on Dreamwidth, with a five minute delay. Some tags are also selectively available.

Also, apparently icon limits will be increased at Dreamwidth. See here. Currently the default Plus level at LJ gives users the ability to use fifteen icons as well.
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
[profile] your_librarian says: "The problem is that there aren't many people on LJ who want them and most of the comments here are assuming that moving users from LJ is the answer to DW growth" and "most people who are still using LJ today are going to continue doing so. " and "What DW needs is a killer app, not to worry about codes. And it needs to look for new users in places where people are not yet blogging but nonetheless producing content. What would make them want to produce their content here?"

I would say that I agree with most of these statements, except that IMHO, it's harder to get new users because DW, as an LJ fork, has a high learning curve. Livejournal has been stagnant or declining in usage over the past year. Meanwhile, Wordpress has been growing, and the microblog service Tumblr has experienced dramatic growth. (Lately, Tumblr seems to have done such things as providing a meetup organizing place and creating a film festival also. )

[BTW, my Tumblr.]

[personal profile] chris claims that invite codes decrease diversity, and what he has to say is objectively true to a certain extent. Many of the comments by the people saying they want 'community' and like the smallness of DW suggest this, IMHO. It's a trade-off, to a certain extent, between community and diversity. (As I state on the thread, I don't support invite codes for reasons of community preservation, but for spam prevention)
charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
Since I went and bought a Dreamwidth acc, am thinking maybe I should cancel my regular hosting. It'll save some money, after all. I'll keep the domain name around, though.

Anyway, the Dreamwidth owners seem to be thinking of not using invite codes, in order to encourage growth. IMHO, the spammers are the strongest reason against doing it, and that there are some other steps towards growth which could be taken w/o abolishing invite codes.

However, as discussed in the news entry, it's not clear that using invite codes would solve the problem anyhow, as the main problem is that DW has an undersupply of popular communities and active users who others want to friend. DW lacks unique content to attract new users, it seems.

I have no idea how this can really be remedied. Communities can't cross post like regular journals, and with the smaller userbase, it's harder to create healthy ones.

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