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Sat, Aug 30th - 4:16PM

Contest — Name the Super-user!
If you were a Super-user, what would you like to be called? Super-user, Super-helper, WebRing Leader, WebRing Guru, Master Manager...

We think we can come up with a much more representative title, something that speaks of what it means to be a Super-user. We started to throw around some ideas, but decided that this would make another terrific contest. We love giving you, the WebRing membership, the chance to help shape WebRing.

Leave us a comment below to suggest a title for the highest of all membership levels. Ultimately, we want to make sure to give our Super-users a title they are proud to declare.

Not sure what a Super-user is? See the related blog post for more details.

If your entry wins, you will receive 1000 Activity Points!

You have until September 20, 2008, to suggest (or echo) an appropriate and empowering title for the WebRing Super-user. Remember to include your WebRing User ID, so that we can let you know if you won.
Comment (29)


Fri, Aug 29th - 4:37PM

Introducing the WebRing Super-user
Over the past couple years, we have worked toward developing a more user-fueled WebRing. From the inclusion of flags to allowing community members to process submissions to opening up the help section of the shoutbox to adding the "Suspend this site!" link - we're just getting started. We’re proud to announce the WebRing Super-user!

What Is a Super-user?
A handful of members have been upgraded to "Super-user" status. Each of these members have proven that they are fair, reasonable and timely in their handling of not only their ring submissions, but in the other rings they belong to. They provide support to other members, actively recruit new WebRing members, and demonstrate an overall care for enhancing the quality of the WebRing experience.

Super-users Are Fair
Above all, Super-users are some of the most even-handed members on WebRing. Super-users understand the importance of diversity of communities and are not overzealous when they process sites. Additionally, Super-users aren't shameless self-promoters. They perform their tasks out of a sense of pride and a desire to create a WebRing experience that will entice any visitor to return.

What about Super-users Who Abuse Their "Power"?
We don't appoint Super-users lightly. Each one is monitored for months before we upgrade their status, typically starting them out as "Helpers" in WebRing Communities. Above all else, we watch to see if these Helpers use their abilities for the benefit of other members, not themselves. Those who use their status to get their site into as many rings as possible or to build up their ring collections will lose their status. Any Super-user who uses their "power" to remove their competition will also lose their status.

Should you ever feel as though a Super-user is abusing their status, please fill out a Help request with the drop down item "Abuse/Copyright Issues" to let us know.

What do Super-users get for their services?
Super Activity Points! If a Super-user performs tasks admirably, they earn gobs of Activity Points and increased exposure. In other words, they become the Superstars of WebRing.

Why does WebRing need Super-users?
Quite simply, Super-users create a better experience for WebRing members, as well as for WebRing visitors. Imagine only having to wait a couple of hours (or less) to have your application to a WebRing Community processed. Imagine surfing a WebRing Community and finding only quality content. Imagine receiving accurate answers to your support questions within moments via the Support Ticket system, WebRing IM or our text message system (coming soon). Super-users make this positive experience possible.

Do you have what it takes to be a Super-user?
If you have aspirations to earn Super-user status, you need to get active on WebRing. Start by visiting the WebRing Communities you belong to and processing any new submissions as well as cleaning the community of off-topic or inappropriate sites. Next, go to the Help section of the WebRing shoutbox and offer guidance to other members. Invite new members to WebRing. Start forum discussions that engage community members. There are many ways to attract our attention, and Activity Points is the first place we look.

There are currently 7 activated Super-users on WebRing, and we have a small group of 50 or so other members who are being considered for an upgrade within the next week. These are the top 3 Super-users:
aussiedogs4 | innermurk | theodora_maffat

You might want to introduce yourself to them and pick their brains about all things WebRing.

Comment (5)


Fri, Aug 22nd - 9:36AM

Blog Comments — Include Your Email
Here's a tip for any of you leaving comments on the WebRing blogs:
If you want an email response from the author of a blog,
make sure to include your email address.

You have a couple approaches:

Spam Free
Okay, so you're leery about posting your email address on the internet. You believe that if you post your address online, some bot's going come and scrape your address and sell it to every spammer out there. There is a way to get around your paranoia; break up your address.

Example - feedback ((a t)) webring do t co (m)

Yes, it's a little confusing. That's the point. A human can look at this address and reconstruct it into its original form. Bots have a little more difficulty with this process.

I Ain't Afraid of No Spam
You don't care if you get unsolicited offers, or you have a mighty spam filter. Whatever the case, you're not afraid to post your email address online. You can either write your email directly into your comment, or use the "Email (optional)" field on the comment page. This field will produce a "mailto:" address that leaves the blogger one click away from replying to your comment.

Remember
If you want someone to contact you, you need to provide a way for them to reach you. Include your email address, whether malformed to hide from bots or a one-click link to your email address.

Comment (1)


Thu, Aug 21st - 1:42PM

Suspend Sites from Preview Window
Use the new Suspend this Site! link

Are you tired of surfing rings that seem to contain mostly junk? Then you're going to love the latest feature we added — The "Suspend this site!" link.

How to Use "Suspend this site!"
  1. Visit any of the WebRing Communities you belong to.
  2. Open any of the sites listed.
  3. Click the "Suspend this site!" link when you find an off-topic or inappropriate site, or any site that doesn't offer any relevant content.
  4. Send the "Site Suspended" email, making sure to include the reason why you suspended the site.

Who Can "Suspend this site!"?
  • Community members
  • Community helpers
  • WebRing Super-users

Why Can't I Find the Link?
If you don't find the "Suspend this site!" link, you either don't belong to that particular WebRing Community OR it's your site.

Why Should I Use This Feature?
When you suspend sites that don't belong in the Community, you help to...
  • Create a much more satisfying experience for the drive-by visitor. Nothing drives a visitor away quicker than a Community filled with off-topic sites.
  • Clean up and build a Community you can be proud of.
  • Establish your credibility as a potential "super-user."
  • Earn activity points

You're one step away from helping to create an even better WebRing experience. Go and give the "Suspend this site" link a try!

Comment (6)


Tue, Aug 12th - 2:49PM

Increase Your Exposure — Feature Your Site
There's an easy and inexpensive way to increase your Web site's visibility... the Featured Site option.

Promote Your Site with the featured site optionThe Featured Site option works on a bidding system. At the end of each period, the top three bids will be featured above the WebRing Community's sites list, on the Hub page, and in one of the top three positions in the standard sites list.

The best part is that bids can start as low as twenty cents!

Here's How It Works
1. Visit any WebRing Community Membership.
2. Look for the “Promote Your Site” option in your membership tools.* (see image)
3. Set your bid and click the submit button to wait to see if your bid wins top spot.

*Can’t find the membership tools? Chances are you either aren’t logged in or a member of the Community.

If you don't see the "Promote Your Site" option, the manager probably has not turned on that feature. Contact them to let them know you're interested.

Comment (3)


Fri, Aug 8th - 12:14PM

Lilith Gallery Concludes WebRing Experiment
In March of this year, the folks at the Lilith Gallery Network began an advertising experiment. They increased their WebRing advertising by a mere $6 each month. Their experiment is officially concluded, and their prediction that advertising on WebRing would increase their site traffic proved correct:

[D]uring the WebRing experiment, we broke several monthly records in terms of visitors to the Lilith Gallery Network […] WebRing is a great tool for promoting a quality website. [W]e get roughly 4 to 5 visitors for every penny we spend on WebRing. Pretty inexpensive compared to Google advertising.

Thanks Lilith Gallery for conducting this experiment, sharing your stats, and illustrating how advertising on WebRing can produce terrific results.

To read the entire blog post, click here.


Comment (1)


Wed, Aug 6th - 4:57PM

Is Your Ring "Clean"?
We received a spate of emails lately from some upset ring managers. Their complaint? Their WebRing Communities continue to generate "adult" ads. Nearly every time we investigate, we always find the same problem — the ring description includes the phrase "no adult or pornographic sites."

If you want to keep your WebRing clean, remember this one rule...

Do NOT use the words "adult" or "pornographic" in your ring description!

Even by using those words in this post, you probably see some adult ads in the sidebar. We suggest that you don't mention it all. You manage the ring. If someone applies with an adult site, deny them and tell them why.

If you absolutely must address the "adult" restriction in your ring description, we recommend the following alternatives:

  • All-ages appropriate
  • Family friendly
  • Kid safe
Do you have a ring description that says "no adult sites"? Don't waste any more time; go "clean:" up your ring description. You'll be amazed at the difference the change will make.

Comment (3)


Tue, Aug 5th - 11:24AM

How to Crop an Image for Site Titles
In our last post, we discussed the icons that now appear beside some site titles in WebRing Communities. Today, we would like to present some suggestions for creating site icons that will really pop.

Remember... The Icons Are Tiny!
At a mere 30x30 pixels, the icons can quickly become difficult to make out. So, keep in mind that the smaller you make your original image, the more detail you lose.

Stay Square
No matter how you style your icon, it will always be sized at 30x30. This means that if you've crafted a rectangular icon, something will get cut off. Your original image should be cropped into a square (ex. 250x250, 80x80, 113x113).

Crop It Tight
If you choose to use an image of yourself, your pet or the crazy cat lady who walks past your house everyday, you will need to get rid of most of the image. Get as much of the face as possible to create an icon that will really pop.

Here's what you get if you don't crop the image tight.Here's a terrific school picture. The colors are fun, and the girl's pose is relaxed yet attentive. This would make a great site icon, right? Nope!

Look at what happens to this marvelous image once you shrink it down to a mere 30x30 pixels.

Where did she go? You can't really make out what in the world is going on here.
You get much better results when you crop the image tight.Now, we cropped the image tight on her face. We could have taken it in to frame only her face, but we wanted to include a little of that orange.

Either way, this version is much easier to make out.

Cropping makes all the difference in the world!

Currently, only WebRing 2.0 members will display an icon next to their site titles. Want 2.0?


Comment (2)


Mon, Aug 4th - 2:57PM

Icons Next to Site Titles?
Have you noticed that some site titles have an icon next to them while others don’t? You might actually have a couple questions about these icons:

What purpose do the icons serve?
We have added the icon feature as one more way to easily connect with your fellow WebRing members. Whenever you run across an icon, click it to open that member’s system profile page. http://pg.webring.com/cgi-bin/members/blog.cgi?userid=9970254786008&targetdate=2008_7_28&monthyear=Jul_2008

Why do some site titles have icons while others don’t?
Currently, only WebRing 2.0 members will display their icons. It’s yet one more perk of the premium membership level. The icons offer one more way for 2.0 members to create a presence that invites others to network with them. We may eventually show icons for all members, but for now, 2.0’s get the privilege of increased presence.

What if I don’t want my icon to show?
An icon will always display. It won’t necessarily show one that reveals your face or brand, but it will show a generic silhouette icon. To remove your mug or funny little image as an icon, you must remove your profile image. Here’s how to do so…

  1. Sign in to your account page and click the “Edit Profile” tab. (Hint: You won’t see an “Edit Profile” tab if you aren’t a WebRing 2.0 member.)
  2. Toggle the “Remove image.” box from both “profile image” and “small icon.”
  3. Scroll down and click the “Apply Changes” button.

The downside is that you can’t show an image on your profile while keeping icons off of your site listing. Would you like us to develop this option? Let us know at feedback@webring.com.



Can I have a different icon for my site title than the one on my profile?

You bet! On the “Edit Profile” page, use the “small icon” field to upload an image sized at 30px by 30px. Remember, the icons are small. If you want to upload a photo of yourself, we recommend cropping your face in really tight. Otherwise, you can’t make out who is in the picture.

Any other questions?
Did we forget something? Let us know at feedback@webring.com. Make sure to title your email “Site Listing Icons” so that we don’t mistake your email for spam. Or you can ask your question via the comment feature below ->
Comment (3)


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