Hoboken Week in Review – 5/3/2009
Festival, Rain and Hoboken411 Upgrade!
Today is the “much anticipated” Spring Arts & Music Festival. If you don’t like getting wet – get there early!
Rain is expected to begin approximately at noon (according to the fruity hourly forecast I look at occasionally…) – I do promise, however, that I will not issue a press release about imminent flooding each time the skies become cloudy…
FINALLY! – I’ve rolled out some of the Hoboken411 feature upgrades I’ve been working on since January! While many of you think I just sit around and simply type a few things every now and then – I should reveal that I’ve also been working on programming many scripts and various code functions for quite a while (this is geek talk now)… The one aspect of Hoboken411 I’ve always been concerned with, is usability. Coming up with an idea or concept is one thing, but making it a reality is entirely different. I had a few “pet projects” I was determined to make happen – and you can see it right away.
Believe it or not, with almost 18,000 registered Hoboken users and well over 150,000 reader comments – maintaining civil discourse on a popular community website is not an easy task. I get a plethora of “complaints” from readers who are not happy with some of the “patrons” that make rude and insensitive comments (I run a “wild” bar, don’t I?) The fact that I tend to the “complaint window” is somewhat time-consuming. I should not need to do this – because my goal is to create engaging content that the community is interested in – and I mean the whole community – not just the zealous political nutjobs that consumed too much caffeine and are generally unhappy.
So in order to relieve myself of these constant emails – I decided to put the onus on keeping the community sane – IN YOUR HANDS. My job is to be the conduit for neighborhood conversation – not to be the “parent” and dictate what is – and isn’t – acceptable.
New features added
My idea to reduce the number of complaints was to incorporate community-managed features onto the site – along with others that can possibly make my job easier.
- Comment voting. I’ve incorporated a comment rating system. A simple “vote up” and “vote down” icon on each comment that allows users to rate the quality of the comment.
This will give a general feel for how Hoboken411 readers feel about each comment. In other words – if you say something out of line, stupid, offensive, or otherwise off-topic – most readers will give you a thumbs down. What happens after that – just watch.
- Flagging comments. This is a bit more important. Every registered (and logged in) user has the ability to “flag” a certain number of comments per day. This feature is NOT to be abused and should used carefully. You save this privilege for comments that go over the line, and that offend even the most thick-skinned readers. After a certain number of flags – I get notified and make the determination of what to do with that comment. NOTE: If registered users abuse this function – and flag comments that aren’t worthy of being flagged – they themselves will be flagged for “crying wolf,” and may possibly get punished for false alarms. “Check – meet Balance.”
- Reply to comment – no more “quote.” – I am at home with programming and other computer code. However, most standard computer users don’t always “get it.” With that being said – I decided to take the thought out of replying to another person in the comment sections here on Hoboken411. Previously – when you hit “quote,” the user comment box was filled with all sorts of cryptic computer code and symbols. Most folks have zero understanding of what this means. Often times, this caused some time-consuming technical issues on my end. Well – this problem is now solved.
I’ve eliminated the “thought process” from replying to a user you’d like to chat with. Now, you just hit the “reply” button – type your comment – and Hoboken411 handles the heavy lifting for you!!
Also gone is the horribly nested comments – that can be quite hard to read if it goes too deep.
OK – here’s what happened last week…
So with that wacky computer talke out of the way, what made the most discussed entries for the two weeks ending Sunday, May 3rd, 2009?
Hottest general topics of the week
Hoboken residents have a LOT to say about Barack Obama’s first 100 days in office!
Hoboken411 has video of the recent Mayoral Discussion Forum at Our Lady of Grace Chuch!
ScamSwine-Flu got the entire globe nervous. Life carries on here in Hoboken, right?
Wasn’t it kind of rude for Barack to fly a plane so low to NYC without friggin telling anyone? What a selfish, pompous ass! Yet, his supporters are remaining mum. That Lemming cartoon is looking much more realistic these days…
Six Hoboken cops respond to a call for a frail 90 pound homeless dude.
A press release from a height-challenged politico – and accompanying harmless photoshop job – gets the P.C. juice flowing in many liberals.
A reader asked the Healthy Hoboken columnist about skimpy clothing!
The NJ Transit Rail Yards – make news still!
Take a look at the campaign material produced by our current mayor
thiefduring his last campaign…
The big (but not as big as the St. Patty’s Day) spring event is happening NOW!
Don’t forget to check the Hoboken411 event calendar!