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Updating User Records

Posted 19-01-2010 at 15:36 by ben

In order to get a better idea of the range of people that use the forum, I've now made it mandatory to enter your Date of Birth, Gender and Country in the user profile.

Nothing malicious going on here - it would just be nice to get an idea of the demographic using the site.

Oh and yes, there is an option to hide your age if you want
Total Comments 16

Comments

  1. Old Comment
    850kd's Avatar
    Sorry Ben, I think youve got this one wrong .!
    Dates of Birth are open to hackers and id thieves.
    How do you know that fake d.o.b's wont be submitted anyway?
    Apart from this you're doing a great job, running this forum which is appreciated by us all.
    permalink
    Posted 19-01-2010 at 15:56 by 850kd 850kd is offline
    Updated 19-01-2010 at 16:33 by 850kd
  2. Old Comment
    Though we can hide the dob I never give the real one to web sites, it's one of those things that's between me and my bank. Happy enough to give the year but do you really want to know if I'm a Leo or a Taurus?
    permalink
    Posted 19-01-2010 at 22:07 by SurreyAlan SurreyAlan is offline
  3. Old Comment
    chaos's Avatar
    To be blunt, my gender, country or DOB have nothing to do with the advice I ask for or give on these forums.

    I think that the time you would spend on studying demographics can be applied more usefully elsewhere. No one can use ePer. The forum still has the problems with multipage threads not loading properly.

    Not wishing to appear to be having a go, but I think priorities are being mixed up.
    permalink
    Posted 19-01-2010 at 23:10 by chaos chaos is offline
  4. Old Comment
    ben's Avatar
    You can make it up if you wish, but the majority won't. When I approach agencies to bring in more ads, they ask what the demographic is. New users have had to do this for a while now, this is just catching up on the ones between the Snitz migration and now.

    To be clear, I won't be handing over any individual records - simply give them percentages.

    As for Eper. There's not really much that can be done about it - it has a user limit which is smashed all the time, the only way around that is to get FIAT to rewrite it, which obviously they arent' going to do

    The multipage thread thing is a right pain though - I've been looking for over a year to find the solution to this, but still hitting a blank..
    permalink
    Posted 20-01-2010 at 02:07 by ben ben is offline
  5. Old Comment
    ben's Avatar
    Just to point out - our privacy statement.

    6. Disclosure of Information

    The FIAT Forum may also disclose aggregate, anonymous, data based on information collected from Users to investors and potential partners. In such cases, statistical information only will be disclosed and personally identifiable data will be kept strictly confidential. In case The FIAT Forum is sold, the information collected from users may be transferred to the new owners.
    permalink
    Posted 20-01-2010 at 02:13 by ben ben is offline
  6. Old Comment
    This came as a bit of a surprise - I did wonder if the site had been compromised, as another motoring forum I frequent had been offline for a couple of days before, for unspecified reasons - and I suspect they use the same package - vBulletin, am I correct? This made me doubly cautious.

    Anyway, the main problem I found was that I couldn't access any new pages without a nag screen telling me that I couldn't go any further without updating my profile. So, I couldn't access "Latest News" to find out if this update requirement was genuine, OK so I had a notice at the top of the page but I would imagine an attacker sophisticated enough to compromise the site would be able to spoof that as well.

    So, a dilemma - enter more details to try and gain access or batten down the hatches and wait to see if it all goes away? I chose the former, but in the best traditions of misinformation made up a bunch of lies. Sorry if that skews the demographic - I'm not actually a 130 year old Yemeni woman who drives a Massey Ferguson - but perhaps it would have been better to have a broadcast message beforehand saying that this was going to happen?

    Cheers,

    Plug
    permalink
    Posted 20-01-2010 at 19:43 by Plug Plug is offline
  7. Old Comment
    chaos's Avatar
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Plug View Comment
    Anyway, the main problem I found was that I couldn't access any new pages without a nag screen telling me that I couldn't go any further without updating my profile.
    This is what annoyed me last night. Basically being told 'if you want to use the forum, tell us this'.

    I don't know how many concurrent connections are allowed on ePer but surely there must be something that can be done? One guy has recently said he hasn't been able to get on ePer for 18 months. I know I haven't been able to access it for several months.
    permalink
    Posted 20-01-2010 at 21:06 by chaos chaos is offline
  8. Old Comment
    ben's Avatar
    There is a 10 user limit One of which is used by the monitoring system.

    The problem is, the links have been shared all over the world - people hotlink in etc etc...

    As for the forced info, I tested it and it shuold have let you get onto the main screen first, where I did have the sitewide announcement.

    Remember though, we store no names - so there is nothing to link anyone to anything anyway Even if someone did hack in (which isn't going to happen, the servers are PCI Compliant), all they would have are some email addresses and dobs.

    It's also worth noting that we used to collect all this info anyway (before vBulletin) and again over the last 6 months once the feature was re-added to it.

    Purely demographics.

    We had for example, the other week FIAT wanting to do a "Q+A" session with males ages 18-33, where you would have been paid 50. But as there was no way to target just those members, they didn't go through with it.

    From now on, we can offer things like this
    permalink
    Posted 21-01-2010 at 01:00 by ben ben is offline
  9. Old Comment
    chaos's Avatar
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ben View Comment
    We had for example, the other week FIAT wanting to do a "Q+A" session with males ages 18-33, where you would have been paid 50. But as there was no way to target just those members, they didn't go through with it.

    From now on, we can offer things like this
    Could you not have just posted something in LL?
    permalink
    Posted 21-01-2010 at 22:16 by chaos chaos is offline
  10. Old Comment
    ben's Avatar
    No, as they would be no way to charge for that. They would want *only* that demographic to see the ads and not for guests (remember they pay per view, so wasting money to show to everyone!)
    permalink
    Posted 21-01-2010 at 22:21 by ben ben is offline
  11. Old Comment

    i object

    i object to the mandatory requirement of birth date to my profile. it is none of your freaking business how old i am. i could care less what "harmless" demographics you think you are entitled to.

    so, to get my point across, i have entered a fake date that allows me to post. this should throw a wrench into your plans a might.

    if this mandate is not removed very soon, you will lose the #1 contributor to the Spider section of this forum. not only do i contribute the most to that section, but it appears that i am also the most knowledgable person for that vehicle ... at least the most knowledgable PARTICIPATING member. Best of luck to the other Spider owners that are honestly seeking advice here at Fiat Forum after i have left.

    I'll give you a couple of weeks to react to this... but if i do not receive an email from you letting me know that the mandate has been removed before the end of February... i will cease participating here in any form.
    permalink
    Posted 27-01-2010 at 17:03 by mbouse mbouse is offline
  12. Old Comment
    ben's Avatar
    Sorry you feel that way, but it's not going to be removed. Infact it's been mandatory for new users for some time now.

    You can enter fake data if you so wish, preferably with at least the correct year - after all, thats the important bit.

    Demographics are important for the forum though. We've recently added another server to the farm and as such costs have increased. Being able to market ourself to the correct advertisers is becoming more and more important.

    You can hide your age from end users if you want - and I'm never going to hand out individuals data, so in all honesty, I'm not sure what the problem is... and blackmailing the forum is very, very uncool.
    permalink
    Posted 29-01-2010 at 05:56 by ben ben is offline
  13. Old Comment
    the big deal is, no other forum i attend REQUIRES the information. only this forum REQUIRES the information in order to use the forum. there is a huge difference between volunarily complying to requested information and REQUIRING personal data for the privilege of participation. i choose not to provide that data, and as a result choose to relinquish my privilege of participation.

    you couldn't even do the standard thing of suggesting multiple choice RANGES of age? that has been standard for decades, and everyone is used to it.

    most forums i attend use advertising to support their efforts; you are not unique in this. if it were common for the advertisers to REQUIRE age demographics from the site owners, more sites would REQUIRE birth dates, or at least ranges of age catagories.

    not blackmail at all; i am stating fact. remove the restriction or lose one of your biggest assets at one section of the forum. period. Best of luck to the Spider forum users, cuz this is my sign off post unless you change your REQUIREMENTS in February 2010.

    if it were blackmail, i would be extorting something from you in exchange for something you desire. your response to me indicates that what i am withholding is not of that great value to you.

    you have a bunch to learn about people, ben. hopefully you will begin that process before you hurt someone.
    permalink
    Posted 01-02-2010 at 19:07 by mbouse mbouse is offline
    Updated 01-02-2010 at 21:21 by mbouse
  14. Old Comment
    ben's Avatar
    I can't speak for other sites or advertisers, but in the case of the ones we use here - yes, they do require demographics. Infact, pretty much all the advertising agencies will ask for them, it's standard business practise.

    I'm really sorry you dont like that - but as I said, you can put in any age you wish anyway, which the people who don't want their true age known (to me only) can do.

    As for an age range - it would be valid at the time of signup, but is going to go out of date at some point isn't it.

    And as for hurting people ... sorry, what? Asking for a DOB is not really hurting anyone now is it.

    I should of course add, all our users participation is important - and just because I won't bend one rule for you, does not mean I do no appreciate the content you add to the system. But at the same time, the good of the forum does need to come above the good of a few individuals.

    No one is forcing you to input *correct* data ... when we look at demographics, we generally chop off 15% of each range to account for false data and inaccuracies.
    permalink
    Posted 04-02-2010 at 01:48 by ben ben is offline
  15. Old Comment

    most

    i am stating fact. remove the restriction or lose one of your biggest assets at one section of the forum. period. Best of luck to the Spider forum users, cuz this is my sign off post unless you change your REQUIREMENTS in February 2010.


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    permalink
    Posted 11-12-2010 at 12:27 by door door is offline
    Updated 11-12-2010 at 12:28 by door
  16. Old Comment
    my 5th post hopefully i can now do my tutorial ! with pics
    permalink
    Posted 04-07-2011 at 18:08 by uneekness uneekness is offline