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Should Avatar Images Be Enabled?

VOTE: Should avatar images be enabled?  

78 members have voted

  1. 1. VOTE: Should avatar images be enabled?

    • Yes, globally, but only for a trial run to see if it works out (voted on in another poll down the road)
      21
    • Yes, for donating members (SR patrons) only
      18
    • No, not at all
      23
    • No, not unless the "View avatars" option is off by default
      14


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Like PHPbb, SR's forum software supports avatars for users. These are images of your choice that appear to the left of posts, below your member status (usually "member" or "StorageReview Patron").

A few concerns have been raised about this:

  • Some images may be offensive, unprofessional, distasteful, etc.
    Note: Images would be heavily moderated, and legitimate complaints about an avater would probably lead to its removal/replacement. The existance of an avatar is not a necessary freedom
    That said, if someone did decide to post something a little too creative, there would be some measure of time before it was caught.
    It would be possible to disable uploading of avatars (so that only those that come with the forum software are available), but I think this would be rather boring and possibly defeat the purpose of having the feature in the first place.
  • Might cost money for StorageReview
    Note: Eugene informs me that SR is well below the hosting provider's bandwidth cap, so this is rather unlikely.
  • Slower speeds for analog modem users
    Note: Viewing of avatars can easily be disabled by clicking on "My Controls --> Board Settings --> Do you wish to view members avatars when reading topics?"
  • Less professional feel for the forums
    Note: This is a matter of opinion of course, but is a good point in general. Concerns about this based on the possibility of inappropriate images are discussed above, and considering the readership of StorageReview.com, this is unlikely to be a problem. Concerns based on the opinion that any avatar images of any kind are unprofessional are not as easy to address. There is likely no way to globally set the default for viewing avatars for every new user short of editing IPB's source code, which is undesireable for a number of reasons. If this is a concern, it would be a good reason to vote 'no'

It would probably not be practical to disable avatar viewing by default for all new users, but it may be easy to set the option to "no" for all existing users with a simple SQL query if that was desired (though frankly it isn't exactly difficult to disable).

Edit: Okay it was probably a mistake to not make this a poll in the first place. Please read over the thread and then place your vote. Reader opinions will likely be the exclusive deciding factor.

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Depends on whether you find this offensive:

beercat.png

:P Sure. Why not? I often find it easier to identify individuals if I have an image to go by rather than just a handle.

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We could always have a test period & see how it works out :)

The problem with that sort of thing has always been that once a feature is available, people tend to become very grumpy if it is made unavailable later, even if for good reasons.

I am rather leaning towards the idea, since it doesn't seem to cause problems on other forums (though there was a cartoon animated GIF on a Win32 assembly language forum that is the only image in the last 5 years or so to offend me, so much that I stopped visiting. That is hard to do, believe me.)

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I am rather leaning towards the idea, since it doesn't seem to cause problems on other forums

Great! When do we get started? :D

It isn't my decision. It will likely be a vote between the moderators and the final decision is up to Eugene, but then there hasn't been much feedback on the idea at all yet.

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About half the sites I visit have avatars and half do not. I find avatars less irritating than long sigs, though. It *does* make it a bit easier to identify posters. I think if SR decides to allow it, it should be hosted off SR's servers to keep bandwidth usage down.

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If you host the images on off SR servers, they are hard to moderate. If you host them on a SR server, SR pays for the bandwidth.

I typically find the avatars distracting. I would perfer they are left off. If they are enabled, I would suggest putting them on a SR server and requiring you be a donating member.

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If we had the option of avatars, could there be a user preference to not display them? While I'm speculating other people's work, is there a chance of doing this for sigs as well?

*note: I would probably leave both on most of the time, unless I'm RDCing via modem or something.

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i know you like it guys and i may like it too, sometimes you get funny pics, but imo, if we keep it without avatar is better, this site is pro site, and the avatar kinda turns the site into less valueable and discard the value of the site in some ways. imagine some posters use pikini girl with huge boobs, or dog shitting ...etc.

i will vote no.

take it easy on me guys.

instead enable the edit :ph34r:

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If we had the option of avatars, could there be a user preference to not display them? While I'm speculating other people's work, is there a chance of doing this for sigs as well?

yes. it's inside control panel->board settings.

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imagine some posters use pikini girl with huge boobs, or dog shitting ...etc.

Note that, if it were enabled, the images would be heavily moderated (much moreso than posts).

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why i cant vote?

i get the folloing message when i try to vote or vew results

Sorry, an error occurred. If you are unsure on how to use a feature, or don't know why you got this error message, try looking through the help files for more information.

The error returned was:

You cannot vote in this poll

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why i cant vote?

i get the folloing message when i try to vote or vew results

Sorry, an error occurred. If you are unsure on how to use a feature, or don't know why you got this error message, try looking through the help files for more information.

The error returned was:

You cannot vote in this poll

Good question. Probably a security setting incorrectly configured (polls were just recently enabled and this is as far as I know the first one used).

As soon as Eugene is back I'll let him know.

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Can't vote either.

Why no simple "Yes" as a choice? Personally I'm against avatars on sites like this - typically they remind me of kindergarten. If I want to see pretty pictures I'll go to here or better yet here.

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Avatars are useful to quickly idnetify posters, and they make the posts more unique. I won't use anything offensive. I'll probably have pictures of hard drives and other unusual things (G rated of course)

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imagine some posters use pikini girl with huge boobs, or dog shitting ...etc.

Note that, if it were enabled, the images would be heavily moderated (much moreso than posts).

I have a feeling if this goes into effect I wont think the moderation goes far enough.

Guess I'll be making use of adblock to block some peoples avatars.

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1. Sure, avatars are great for quickly identifying people, if you can't read.

2. Adding avatars will surely add an unnecessary burden to fora servers.

3. It is extremely easy to use an offensive avatar. Moderation cannot know what each member feels.

4. Avatars are a distraction and lead to topics about avatars, how to make them, and how to add one. As we have all noted about RAID 0, FAQs do not work.

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1.  Sure, avatars are great for quickly identifying people, if you can't read.

2.  Adding avatars will surely add an unnecessary burden to fora servers.

3.  It is extremely easy to use an offensive avatar.  Moderation cannot know what each member feels.

4.  Avatars are a distraction and lead to topics about avatars, how to make them, and how to add one.  As we have all noted about RAID 0, FAQs do not work.

I would second this.

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