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  1. Temaelrin

    2018: Summer Updates

    Hello fellow Dreamers, It's that time of the year again, and this update has been focused on fixing as many bugs as possible, rather than adding new features or changing things. Some of you may already be aware of some of these changes, as I softly announcement them via my statuses, and this acts a sort of "This is what we did this season." This is not as big as the previous "2018: Spring Updates", but there have been a number of changes. This announcement will cover: New Staff Site Changes EcchiCredits Club Changes Chatbar (EcchiChat) Changes Official Discord Server Two-Factor Authentication Reminders Semi-Technical: Bug Fixes Known Bugs that Still Exist New Staff EcchiDreams is continuing to grow beyond our expectation, and as such, we took on new staff earlier in the season. It's with joy that I'd like to formally welcome both @Aura and @Sunstone to our site staff. Furthermore, I'd like to welcome @Kalvoras Vertal (AKA: Shuya) as our official Discord moderator. Site Changes We've made a number of updates both in the background and in the foreground this season. One of the main changes in the background is the transition over to HTTP2: this should now speed up the loading of site resources, as well as improve on security a little too, although the site is backwards compatible with the previous protocol. Most browsers happily accept HTTP1.1; although there is a bug for people who use BitDefender, where these browsers will not use HTTP2. This isn't a problem with EcchiDreams at all, as BitDefender does this to every HTTP2 site, thanks to it's "Scan SSL" or "Encrypted Web Scan" feature - which they say is more secure, but ironically they make things less secure when enabled because it disables HTTP2. Geniuses. To find out more information on HTTP2 and what it means, click here to see this infographic. In addition to this we've also tried to improve the speed and loading times of EcchiDreams, which has been getting to be a noticeable problem - especially if there are 20-30 people online at the same time - due to how resource heavy the site is, especially with the likes of EcchiChat. However these teething problems have been resolved for the most part, and everything is starting to run more smoothly again. EcchiCredits In the last update, I touched on an exploit with reactions for EcchiCredits, which you can click on and see in the article posted next to this text titled "2018: Spring Updates". But to basically summarise the problem: this exploit would essentially break the EcchiCredit economy, by allowing a group of friends to like and dislike each other's statuses. This would add the EcchiCredits to the accounts each time it was done, and not take them back if the content was unliked again. The developer of the original application had gone AWOL with there being a massive exploit that had been known about for quite some time; some people on the developers site had pointed this out way back in February, with some pointing it out in December of last year, and the developer had done absolutely nothing about it since then. When the exploit was independently found on here; I was able to find out who abused it, and to what extent, and deducted the ill-gotten gains manually. The feature was also disabled due to this. However, this has now changed. Another third-party developer (the one who made the background software behind the EcchiStore, which was originally two different applications made by two different people) has basically stepped in and introduced the features of the first developer to his application, which is properly supported and a well trusted source of our advanced development needs. He realised this problem and had already taken steps to preventing it, after he realised that telling the first developer was going nowhere. So TL;DR, what does that mean for us? Well I'm happy to announce that FINALLY reputation for EcchiCredits is back online, working, and not exploitable. The new developer is reliable, so should a problem like this crop up in future, and I cannot fix it, we can be confident that the developer actually will. Club Changes There has been a minor change to the amount of clubs that dreamers can open. Previously it was set to four universally; however after receiving feedback from certain Dreamers, we've changed this up very slightly. Now it is dependant on what user group you're in, so it gives yet another (albeit small) incentive to our premium dreamers. Currently it is set to the following: Dreamers: Six clubs. Gold Premium Dreamers: Eight clubs Platinum Dreamers: Ten clubs. This can increase universally (like +2 on each one), or in part (like +2 on just Gold and Platinum), later on, depending on how the clubs continue to evolve. To clear up yet another misconception: no, you cannot pay for premium membership with real life money; you pay for it via Ecchi Credits in the EcchiStore, which you get as a contribution credits. The reason there are limits is pretty self evident: we would rather have quality over quantity and, if for whatever reason a club owner falls inactive completely, then the "damage" is rather contained. Chatbar (EcchiChat) Changes As you would have been aware, we've recently changed our chatbar software (EcchiChat) from Cometchat, a company that I can no longer recommend to anyone. As I announced here; we were in the middle of an active licence with them that entitled us to receive updates for their software, which we were also allowed to host on our server. This privilege cost us around $64 a year; reasonable eough in my opinion. Rather unexpectedly, this company suddenly changed their pricing and ceased to support the software on hosted solutions. It gets worse... Cometchat now wants $299 a month ($3,588 a year) for the same functionality we had before at $64 a year, and we were no longer allowed to host their latest software. They "have to host it", which means all messages sent are stored on their servers and not protected by the EcchiDreams Privacy Policy; this is absolutely unacceptable. Considering the software was extremely buggy and practically non-functional 'out of the box', and required lots of intense and heavy modification just to get it to integrate properly with the forums, most of the testimonials on their site at the time of writing were written way before this change happened, and they're claiming big name sites use their software - of which there is no evidence when you look up their sites. You can see why we dropped this like a hot potato... Sketchy business practices aside, I realise that "They're a private company and can do what they like" in regards to pricing; so I will say that "And I can choose not to accept it and move on to a better provider", which is what I did. Instead we're now using a US based solution that allows us to host it on our own servers, and unlike Cometchat; it actually works. Official Discord Server EcchiDreams now has an official Discord Server, which you can only join by linking your Discord Account up with EcchiDreams via this link here. In the past we had an unofficial one set up by @Kalvoras Vertal (AKA Shuya); however, it became very apparent that a closer integration with EcchiDreams and the Terms of Service was required. You don't have to come and join us, but you are welcome to. It's still very much a work in progress; but it's mostly up, and we're happy to take suggestions. Two-Factor Authentication Reminders Currently only one Dreamer who isn't staff has activated Two-Factor Authentication; this isn't good. You can find out how to do it here. We've added little reminders to sensitive areas of the site (for now), that will nag remind you to set it up when you enter it for the first time. This includes: Managing Authorised Devices Changing your Password Changing your Email Address You can absolutely choose to opt-out, but we'll try one last time to advise against it with the following warning message. If you click on OK, the site won't mention it again to you: Semi-Technical: Bug Fixes We have made the following bug fixes since the previous release: Changed: Moved the signout button towards the bottom of the navigation menu on mobile devices, due to the amount of times people were voicing their completely valid feedback that it was too close to the notifications/EcchiText buttons. This was a design oversight on the UI menu, and whilst it's not perfect right now, we'll look at continually improving it. Thank you. Fixed: All Cometchat related/caused bugs - Fixed by ditching Cometchat completely. Fixed: A MySQL Table limit bug when entering a description for a Gallery Image, which prevented roleplayers from entering more than 65,535 bytes (including formatting), which either presented a strange error message, or simply cut off the text. We also told IPS about this bug and they've included it as a standard fix in their latest IPS Suite release. Fixed: Rare bug with Avatar Upload that would cause a (ERR_NO_CONTENT) failure when uploading. Fixed and Improved: Performance of the Activity Stream has been enhanced. Fixed: Registration is now scrollable on mobiles. Known Bugs that Still Exist Sometimes there is a menu overlap with the new position of the Logout button and some menu elements on mobiles. We're working on getting this fixed and has become a top priority for us. When buying a lottery ticket, or really doing anything in the EcchiStore, it seems to automatically redirect you to the homepage. Which is annoying. Premium Memberships brought from the EcchiStore still don't appear to be working properly. Whilst they're actually usable this time, they're expiring, even though they shouldn't be. We can still manually promote people to Premium Membership status upon the purchase of a Premium Membership, so it's not so much a problem as an annoying bug. We hope to have these fixed by the Winter Updates (2018), and we apologise for the inconvenience. Source: けこちゃ For many of us in the northern hemisphere it's been way too hot to be cooped up indoors roleplaying and the like, so I thought a nice picture of a cat girl with a water gun might cool some of us down a little.
  2. Hello fellow Dreamers, This year has barely begun and already we're working hard to improve the service for everyone here at EcchiDreams. Firstly we all hope you had a wonderful Christmas (Or holidays) and a Happy New Year. This update was focused mainly in the back end, which would affect the stuff you see, although there isn't that many feature changes... That's coming in the Spring Update. I also want to address the new influx of Dreamers that have found themselves making an online home here at EcchiDreams; Welcome to EcchiDreams! Thanks to you all, and some of our veteran members alike; we achieved 50 online Dreamers in the space of 24 hours; and for a small site like ours with next to no advertising budget, this is a big deal. We hope EcchiDreams continues to grow, and that you stick around. EcchiDreams has come a long way, and we hope that it continues attracting like minded roleplayers who want to RP and have fun. This announcement will cover: Server Side Updates EcchiStore and EcchiCredits (¢) EcchiChat Server Side Updates As part of our effort to increase the site's snappiness (speed) and decreasing response times (time you wait for a page to load, or even change when you click on something) we've made, what we feel to be a major breakthrough. This is why we wanted to go offline for 2 days, to get this done and to cover any possibility of the server completely crapping out. Not only did the server not "crap out", even once, but the updates went uncharacteristically and disconcertingly smoothly! I might be biased, but I've noticed an immediate speed improvement already. Take for example the Emoticons (Emoji) when making a post; when you click on that smiley face in the text editor, it used to take 10-20 seconds for it to load when hardly anyone else was on the site, 30 seconds to a minute on a busy day. This was untenable, and no doubt others had noticed this too. But since the update, it took between 4 to 6 seconds. It's not perfect - yet, but that's a massive improvement. Pages seem to load much faster, although we have no official metrics yet (because the sites we use to monitor those things can't see our site whilst it's offline), so when the site is online again I will be posting some information down in the comments, comparing the before and after. We very much hope that this makes everyone happy, including Dreamers who use mobiles, which has been especially noticeable on. I won't get too technical about it, but this should help with the influx of new Dreamers we've been having, so please let me know what you think - does the site feel faster to you? Do pages seem to load quicker, does it respond better? EcchiStore and EcchiCredits (¢) Before the Big Update on EcchiDreams, we had a feature called EcchiCredits and EcchiCash. EcchiCredits was the currency you earnt by contributing on the site (making posts, etc), and EcchiCash was where you could spend your EcchiCredits to change your display name (your username), your title, get premium membership, and items for your profile (like 'Dolls', or 'Cookies'). However, after the Big Update we pretty much lost most of this, due to the fact that the applications we used were no longer being updated by their third-party developers. And for a long time (nearly three years), EcchiCredits has been stuck in limbo, not useful for anything and barely collectable. Crippled, essentially. [The Currency Symbol for an EcchiCredit is: ¢ ] Not anymore. I am happy to announce that it's coming back, it's not quite at the glory it was in the olden days, but we're a massive step closer today than we were a few weeks ago, at the very least. Last week, I put out a sneak-peek update (slipped it under the radar, whilst no one was looking) and made a major improvement to the EcchiCredit system, that allowed you to bank EcchiCredits and earn them again, which people are starting to notice. Some have already asked me: "How do you get EcchiCredits?", "How much do you get?" and so on... Well, I'll tell you here. Of course, these costs might be subject to change but at the moment, they are: All Dreamers start out with ¢1,500 as a welcome to EcchiDreams gift. You get EcchiCredits just for logging in; you get an amount daily. At the moment it is ¢20 a day. Which if you're on every day, that's ¢7,300 a year - just by visiting once a day. In addition to this you also get ¢20 every week as long as you log in at least once; adding ¢1,040. In addition to this you also get ¢100 every month, as long as you login at least once; adding ¢1,200. So in total, if you're on every day you can earn ¢9,540 a year, by pretty much doing bugger all other than logging in. You can get EcchiCredits (10% a Year) by storing your monies in your bank account. You get ¢10 for making a Status You get ¢5 for replying to one (With exception to the Sandbox Forums ) you get ¢10 for making a topic on the forums You get ¢5 for replying to a topic on the forums (with exception to welcoming new Dreamers in the introduction forums; which is ¢10) If you're the topic poster, and someone replies to your topic, you also get ¢5 (on the forums) Commenting/Reviewing Images posted using the Gallery, either by the Gallery or Clubs - ¢5 (At this time you do not get EcchiCredits for posting images.) You get EcchiCredits for reporting bugs! Depending on Severity (decided by the technician responding to the ticket) - please note the last three are so rare, there has only been one report of a major security-flaw caught by a Dreamer, and that was before my Administration (and I've been here 5/6 years). Low Severity: ¢100 Medium Severity: ¢250 High Severity: ¢500 Severe Severity: ¢750 Critical Severity: ¢1,000 Minor Security-Flaw: ¢2,500 Major Security-Flaw: ¢5,000 Critical Security-Flaw: ¢10,000 Reviewing/Commenting on Roleplayers via Preferences, Private Roleplaying and even the News Articles - ¢5 When someone reacts to your post: : ¢50 : ¢100 : ¢75 : ¢75 : ¢10 : ¢10 And so on... Making EcchiCredits is really not that hard; check out these fine Dreamers who've earnt a fair amount. Can you overtake them? As for the EcchiCash Shop - we've brought a basic version of it back with a different name; The EcchiStore. It doesn't have much in it right now: as I said, it was going to be a starting point that I hoped we could actually work on and expand over the year or so. Right now it has two things for sale: Change Dreamer Title - That little title that is usually under your display name. Yep! You can change that. ¢1,750 Change your Name - Change your display name at any given time. ¢2,500 The staff are already going through some ideas of what to include with the store when we can, so we're open to taking suggestions and such. We decided against most of the items that come with the shop, such as "Steal another Dreamers Reputation", because that's likely to start arguments that frankly none of us want. There were other things that were a problem too, such as "Reset Warning Points", which is understandable from a "Paying a Fine" point of view, but at this time none of our 'Non-Bannable' warning points are permanent; they self expire after time anyway. But we would have liked to have done some kind of profile items, stuff that is just stuff and has no meaning or effects other than it's just stuff. EcchiChat Just quickly here... The EcchiChat system has been updated: it's had a number of bug fixes and layout tweaks, yet it still somewhat looks the same. It should also be slightly better in terms of performance. And that's pretty much it. Please leave a comment below as I will read them. ------- Source: Ensemble Stars! I don't believe this was done by any artist in particular, but by the company itself as CG. I wanted a character of some description sitting on a pile of Gold, to celebrate the EcchiCredits coming back as well as the EcchiStore and my Image-Board Lurks didn't fail to please. Apparently this image is from Ensemble Stars; which I believe is a mobile trading card game (That you can download from Google Play / Apple App Store) and has had a novel and manga made for it and has an Anime show in production for it. I'm not paid to sell it, so if you like the sounds of it, by all means check it out, if not, don't. It's your choice.
  3. Temaelrin

    Winter Updates

    Hello fellow Dreamers, This year is coming to a close, and there have been some pretty major updates on EcchiDreams that have been aimed at making things easier and giving roleplayers more control over their roleplays. This update has been focused on overhauling the guide section and bringing it up to date, and doing the same for the homepage. This announcement will cover all of that, but at the end of the announcement we have something that's pretty serious that we need to put out there; I don't think it's going to be well received, but it is what it is. This announcement will cover: New Guides Section Refreshed Homepage for both Guests and Logged in Dreamers Dropping Twitter Sign In and the effective closing of our Twitter Account Club Permissions Finalised Depictions of Minors in Nude or Sexual Situations (A rather serious topic) New Guides Section We are pleased to announce the opening of our new guides section, which replaces our old "Community Tutorials and Guides", and brings in our new "EcchiDreams Guides". This has a vastly updated interface, and splits guides down into sections that are more relevant for reading, cutting the larger guides down into smaller pieces which will be less daunting to read. The Community Tutorials and Guides was brought in early September 2016, and was announced in this update: We have updated and re-written most of the guides in the section, so that they're accurately representing the new format of EcchiDreams. For example: Roleplay Clubs rather than "Public Roleplays", and so on. We've also updated the Account and Profile settings guides, so that you can get a hands on manual for basic account settings management, setting up your profiles, and securing your account. This is a vast improvement over the old section, and over time we hope to be able to keep it up-to-date, and add more guides to it. Check it out, and let us know what you think: https://ecchidreams.com/help/guides/ Refreshed Homepage for both Guests and Logged in Dreamers The EcchiDreams Homepage (https://ecchidreams.com) has been updated. The guest viewing of the page now has the correct information relating to the roleplays, and provides an accurate summary of what you can do in terms of the Club Roleplays, as well as linking to our current guides section. There have also been a number of fixes and optimisations site wide; all little things that kind of add up. The logged in page is objectively more useful too. We've included a handy little Dreamer Widget that displays personalised information such as your posts and reputation count, as well as a welcome message (plus something light hearted under it that changes every hour), and quick links to various places around EcchiDreams. We've added some touch ups here and there, and done away with the news taking up most of the screen; instead putting up "Our Picks" alongside the seven most recently active clubs on EcchiDreams. "Who Was Online" and "Who's Currently Dreaming" have been added to homepage too. On a side note: The Roleplayer Preferences has been updated to include something that a Dreamer had suggested (Grammar and Spelling Competence Preference), and has had the out of date fields removed completely. We might be looking at expanding the fetish list in the Roleplayer Preferences at some point in 2018. We're also trying to acquire the funds to completely overhaul the section, so that it looks better and is easier to read and fill out - this doesn't have a date on it as of yet. Terms of Service has been updated, to clarify that Clubs are included in areas of enforcement. We'd like to state clearly, on the record, that even if you set your club to Private, Staff can still see it for Terms of Service Enforcement. Dropping Twitter Sign In and the effective closing of our Twitter Account I don't want to make a long statement about this, or a big song and dance; but it does affect EcchiDreams. As of last week, we've locked our Twitter account (set it to private), effectively closing it down; we have also removed Twitter as a Sign in Option from EcchiDreams. This partly has something to do with their most recent policy change, for our own reasons, and the way Twitter is being managed in general. They can run their site the way they choose to. We can choose not to be associated with them anymore. We've also never really used the account either, and its only parroted postings to our Facebook page. That was its one and only job, and it couldn't even do that properly... So we ended it. It has nothing to do with anything else. We're not planning on becoming a voice of inciting violence or hatred against... well... Anyone. Even Twitter. Club Permissions Finalised We've finally finalised the club permissions for people you make staff of your club(s). I would like to stress again that Community Staff can see all Clubs on EcchiDreams - even Private Clubs. We've made a pretty simple table below, that displays clearly what the permissions are. Permissions Club Moderators Club Administrators Club Owners Pin Content This makes a topic within the club appear at the top of the topic listings, much like how pinning content works on the Forums. Unpin Content This demotes a topic within the club from appearing at the top of the topic listings. The topic will be listed normally when unpinned. Hide Content Hiding content hides a post, image, or topic (for example) from appearing to other club members. View Hidden Content Allows your club staff to see hidden content. To help stand out to club staff, the hidden content will appear highlighted in red. Lock Content Locked content cannot be replied to by your club members, which is great for setting rules and such. It also allows topics that are finished to be locked, as an archiving tool. Unlock Content The ability to unlock content that was previously locked. Not usually needed, unless (for example) there is an event that opens on specific days. Reply to Locked Content Allows your club staff to reply to content that is already locked. Useful because it means you don't have to unlock it, reply to it, and then lock it again. Add Features to Club Adding features to the club such as a calendar, topics page, gallery, and so on. Edit Categories/Features Editing already existing features on the club like a Gallery Page, Topics Page, and so on. Can Promote Members to Administrators/Moderators Self explanatory; this is the permission that sets who can make people staff. Invite Dreamers to Club (Closed/Private) Usually for Closed and Private Clubs; allows your staff to invite Dreamers from the community to your club and/or roleplay. Remove Members From Club The ability to remove members from the club; this could be for a whole host of reasons. But, if your club is open (not Private or Closed), nothing stops the Dreamer from rejoining. Edit Content *Potentially Destructive* Editing other people's posts, images, and so on, that have been posted. If you edit a post, it will come up at the end of the post that it was edited by you. Move Content *Potentially Destructive* The ability to move content within clubs they are a moderator, administrator, or owner of. This is disabled across the board. Unhide Content This is disabled due to technical limitations. Please consult a member of the Community staff to have content unhidden for you, and please be clear as to what you want unhiding (by posting a link to it). Delete Content *Destructive* The ability to permanently delete people's content. This is disabled across the board. If you want something deleted, please speak to a member of the Community staff. Split and Merge Content *Potentially Destructive* If you have posts, for example, that are posted one after the other by the same person in the same topic, you can merge them; this requires the ability to edit content. For the meantime, this is disabled. These permissions are for in the clubs which the Dreamer is staff of, and do not extend out of the clubs to the rest of the community. To date, if you have a club that you want to delete, you still have to contact a member of the community administration to do it for you. Depictions of Minors in Nude or Sexual Situations Lastly... Lolicon, Shotacon and the like, has not been allowed on EcchiDreams for a very long time. in fact, around this time in 2013 I made a topic about it, explaining why it wasn't allowed on EcchiDreams. I don't want to be too negative or harsh, and I want to keep my personal biases out of it, so I will just stick as closely to the facts of the matter as possible. The Facts Computer Images, Drawn, Generated or otherwise (Depictions) of those that are under 18 (Minors), Nude or in Sexual Situations, are in fact illegal in the following countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Finland, France, Italy, Japan (somewhat, I'm not sure), Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, South Africa, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. [UK Law]:- Coroners and Justice Act 2009 - Sections 62 to 68 - It's classed as a "Pseudo Photograph" which is "an image, whether made by computer-graphics or otherwise howsoever, which appears to be a photograph". [US Law]:- 18 USC 1466A - (Source 2) - Where it is stated as clear as day: "In General - Any person who, in a circumstance described in subsection (d), knowingly produces, distributes, receives, or possesses with intent to distribute, a visual depiction of any kind, including a drawing, cartoon, sculpture, or painting, that—(1)(A) depicts a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct; and (B) is obscene; or (2)(A) depicts an image that is, or appears to be, of a minor engaging in graphic bestiality, sadistic or masochistic abuse, or sexual intercourse, including genital-genital, oral-genital, anal-genital, or oral-anal, whether between persons of the same or opposite sex; and (B) lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value; or attempts or conspires to do so, shall be subject to the penalties provided in section 2252A(b)(1), including the penalties provided for cases involving a prior conviction." Just for Information and Reference, as it might tell you which laws they are in the other listed countries, I am not holding this as reliable source, but the above mentioned are linked to reliable sources (The horse's mouth as it were). Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_status_of_drawn_pornography_depicting_minors Our Stance on it Historically EcchiDreams was originally set up by KC (@Casey's Administration); she was the original owner of the site back then, and was certainly more well funded than I am. Originally, she let everything except Gore (and I think also Vore) to be posted up, because she absolutely allowed all things artistic. This was in 2006/2007, back when I was just someone who helped out and helped with development/coding, those kind of things. After just a few months, she ran her original Terms of Service past a legal expert in the United States (as she was an American Citizen) and, after talking about it, there was some changes made; very quickly that kind of content was also banned, before the site even launched. I had vocally protested the stupidity of it at the time, but I wasn't an actual member (I couldn't register until 2008 - when I was 18), so it didn't really matter. The rule was kept in during the Second Administration (near the end of 2008) under Illogically Logical, despite her incompetency and lack of enforcing any rules (she was barely online), she kept this in the Terms of Service. (Those that have been around that long know that I don't have many nice things to say about the Second Administration). Things very quickly changed in 2010 on a relaunch of the site under a third administrator: The NekoLust Administration. It became a Zero Tolerance Offence and anyone posting it was banned immediately, no ifs, ands, or buts. The Terms of Service were draconian, to say the very least. Under my Administration (sometime after 2011 to the present day), I've relaxed the ToS a lot, and scrapped all but three Zero Tolerance Rules. Despite this, it is still a Major Infraction (like a Felony), and carries 50-75 Points that expire after a year; also coming with some restrictions, such as all posts made by the offending account will be placed on a Mod Queue. This is something that adds work for us, so as you can imagine we don't want to do that on a whim. Despite this, I also have an unwritten clause; that is that First Time Offenders do have some leniency given to them for certain offences, and this is one of them. But repeat offenders could face heavy warnings, and eventual ban. I think this is firm, but fair. Today, it is a violation of sections: 8.2 (the last part), 15.1 (because it is Illegal), and 18 (general Gallery rules) of our Terms of Service. So with this in mind... In the past few months we've had a fair few Dreamers that have posted such content, and we've upheld our Terms of Service, dealing with it appropriately under the credo "Firm but Fair". In all recent cases we've shown leniency (0-10 infraction points for ones that aren't so obvious, 25 for obvious depictions of minors in nude or sexual situations, all of which expire in six months from the warning, but have no restrictive actions) because all of them are first time offenders. However... All of them this year, with exceptions to just one or two of them, have responded to these infraction points by going completely nuts! I mean completely off the deep end, like a child throwing a temper tantrum. A number of them start acting with either passive-aggression (which is what it is) or, even less acceptable, extreme hostility towards our staff, just for enforcing the very same Terms of Service that we all agreed to when we registered, and it's something that seems to be getting objectively worse. On the past five occasions since September, some have even gotten down right abusive towards our staff (Violation of Section 20.2). It's a disproportionate response to that kind of infraction. It's like like going nuclear just for getting a parking ticket, and it's become a bit of a concerning pattern. Let me make this absolutely crystal clear; If it looks like a child or someone under 18, or is tagged on popular imageboards as being Lolicon/Shotacon or similar, or if canonically the person is under 18 and they are nude or in a sexual situation, then err on the side of caution and do not post it here. It's really not that hard. We understand that "looks like" is subjective, which is partly why there is leniency for First Time Offenders. If you can't talk to us about it like a rational adult upon getting infraction points on your account (IE: melting down like a child not getting their way), then consider going somewhere else. I have enough to deal with; and as I said in 2013, I don't want the drama. I am certainly not willing to risk my freedom by allowing that content here, either. We don't "Hate anyone" who posts it, we don't "Hate it" and we're not trying to be "A Bitch" or (my personal favourite) "Anti-Loli Nazis" about it, but the Law is the Law, and I can't just decide to allow it. It's regarded in our country as being practically the same as Child Pornography. That's a heavy prison sentence right there, and far reaching consequences for the rest of my adult life. Why is it fair that I should be demanded to take that kind of risk, exactly? If you don't like the fact that's illegal in your country, you're going to have to take that up with your legislators. Until it's no longer illegal in the US and the UK, it's not allowed on this site. I am not risking EcchiDreams or my freedom over this. If the legality of it doesn't bother you, or you're somewhat unconvinced of the actual laws I've literally cited, then consider this: We pay the server fees and licence fees, so we get to decide what is and isn't allowed on our site... And depictions of minors nude or in sexual situations isn't allowed. We totally have that right, just like you have the right to go somewhere else if it bothers you that much. Lolicons and Shotacons that aren't sexualised, in a sexual situation, or naked (no genitals on display) are allowed here. That's not banned at all. Roleplaying it, as far as I am aware, is legal, as it comes under free speech/expression. We as Staff aren't trying to get everyone restricted, suspended, or banned, but we do have to enforce our Terms of Service; no one is exempt from them. We don't give out special favours, not even to friends or ourselves. Accept it and move on, or go to another site. We'd be happy to Section 21 your account for you (Terminate/Deactivate it upon request), just shoot us a message in the contact form, or by EcchiTexts to any of the Community Administrators, tell us you want your account to be closed, and we'll close it. No fuss, no hassle, no begging for you to stay, no questions asked! And just to correct a commonly touted fallacy: Just because we're a Hentai friendly site doesn't mean we have to accept depictions of minors nude or in sexual situations at all. For example: Konachan is an Anime/Hentai Image Board that doesn't allow Yaoi (last time I checked). It sucks but that's their prerogative, just like this is our prerogative. They pay their server fees and they get to decide what is and isn't allowed there, just like we pay ours and we get to decide what is and isn't allowed here. I'm seriously not trying to be an "Anti-Loli Nazi" about it, but I am fed up of seeing my staff, who work here voluntarily (completely free) on a website that is completely free of charge, getting abused by those that can't take the smallest of infractions, who can't accept responsibility or accept when they're in the wrong; it's always someone else's fault. I don't want to make it a Zero Tolerance Offence again; I hope that people can start being more adult about it. By all means come and talk to me about it calmly. I will explain myself calmly in return. But as the law stands: It is what it is. I hope this issue can be put to rest once and for all. I don't want any more repeat incidents of categorical abuse being leveled against any of my staff from now on. That's out of line, and I will not accept it; they don't deserve that. ------- Source: Dao Dao I had picked this image because the UK (where I live) is going through a cold snap at the moment, and it kind of just felt right. It's got no one in it, and it's a very neutral picture. It's quite dark and yet it feels cold too. I think it is a very well drawn piece of artwork, and I might just check out Dao Dao's page to see what their other art pieces are like. Also welcome back to @Casey who was the very original EcchiDreams Administrator, it's good to see you again.
  4. Temaelrin

    Autumn Updates

    Hello fellow Dreamers, As I softly announced in my status; this announcement will be focused on some areas such as: Revision to Club Information: specifically in relation to Owners, Administrators, Moderators and Members of Clubs. A reveal of a new reaction. Information New Help and Support section (Already live here: https://ecchidreams.com/help/) Information on a staff shuffle and a new member of staff. Plans for our Facebook Fanpage. Clubs I spoke at length about the clubs however since then we’ve made some changes and such that will need a correction article (This one) to explain them in more detail, as well as correct the information that was previous stated as updates have happened since the launch of Clubs. The types of users in Clubs was previously mentioned as “Leader, Moderators, Users” this is no longer the case; as it’s “Owners, Administrators, Moderators, Members and Guests” which with their own low-level (The same across all clubs) set permissions, depending on that permissions they are in any given club. Owner - The owner is obviously the person who owns the club, they have pretty much sole authority over their club and have extensive permissions. They should be able to edit, hide and make posts appear, change the layout of the club or even collapse the club completely. Administrator - Be warned: I think they have the exact same powers as the Owner does, but they can also make other people Administrators! Do not arbitrarily set people to be your club administrator especially if you don’t trust them 100%. They are essentially, co-owners of the club, the only thing they can’t do is oust you, but in the wrong hands they can do some serious damage. Moderator - Moderators are bound by permissions that give them the ability to moderate content posted within the club. Usually these are non-destructive and easily reversible by both Administrators and Owners. Members - Members are people who have joined the club but have no permissions to moderate the area. Guests/Visitors - People who have not joined the club, in question. Private clubs are completely invisible to these people, and closed clubs show up on the clubs directory but the pages are not visible until they become members. Open clubs are visible but not postable in and public clubs don’t require joining to post in. Does this mean an Owner or Administrator of Club A, are an Owner or Administrator in your Club, Club B? No. They would be whatever you set them to be, if they’re even in your club at all. I think Administrators and Moderators might have the same powers; except Administrators can add other Administrators/Moderators. Or they could have the same power as the owners. The documentation wasn’t clear and I’m not able to test it as I have “Owner” abilities on all clubs as a Community Administrator. So please exercise caution. If anyone does find out, please let me know in the comments section, I will happily correct this article. Things to look for: Can Owners or Administrators edit content, unhide content, move content, delete content and split/merge content. New Reaction I am pleased to announce that on Thursday night, I was able to modify the reactions so that like would be represented by a thumbs up button. I also added a new reaction: Love. When you like a post/comment/status/image so much that a mere like just won’t do. The like button now looks like this: The love button looks like this: A love doesn’t add two points; in contrary to my previous article, you cannot do ‘+2’ rep, you can only have ‘+1’, ‘0’ or ‘-1’. As we don’t use ‘-1’, the current reactions will add the following points to the receivers reputation: Like: +1 Love: +1 Thanks: +1 Haha: +1 Confused: 0 Sad: 0 Help and Support We have replaced the Community Help Centre (Center, if you don’t use British-English) with a more universal Help and Support Centre (Again, center if you’re not using British-English). There will be a status indicator on there in the near future that will tell you the expected waiting time for replies; but if you follow your topics there you can be notified instantly when replies are made. The section is a private one-to-one help and support area available to all Dreamers. Only you and staff will see your own posts, much like in the same way that the Sandbox Area works. Currently the three sections in there are: Help and Support - Do you have a question about something related to EcchiDreams or need to ask how some features work? Or perhaps you've run into something you're not sure about? Then that would be the place to put such a request for help or support. Bug Report - If you are having technical issues with EcchiDreams, or perhaps you've found a bug that you'd like to report, even if it's a spelling mistake, please log it here so that we know about it and can fix it quicker. Please include the steps you took to reproduce the error, will help us confirm the bug quicker. Infraction Appeal - Did you get an infraction or warning that you want to appeal against, or discuss, with staff? Then that would be the place to discuss it. You have to fill out very minimal amounts of information and we can do the rest, so setting off a bug report, or help request has never been simpler. Also we now have a central location for Infraction Appeals; where Dreamers can ask the staff more about their infraction, or even getting it appealed if they believed they were warned unfairly (Never happens, but just incase, right?) Although a little warning in advance: if we get “I didn’t know it was against ToS” when it’s clearly stated in the ToS, your appeal will be rejected. It doesn’t matter if you’ve read the Terms of Service or not, they are enforced here, and ignorance of the Terms of Service is not valid grounds for appeal; please make sure that you have read the ToS so you don’t end up in that situation. Instantly Banned members (Usually from Zero Tolerance Offences) can use the contact form, but successful appeal chances in these cases is currently 0%. We don’t give out warnings/infractions lightly and when we do, we’re usually 100% sure about it. May seem pointless, but you never know what could happen. To check it out, go here: https://ecchidreams.com/help/ Staff Shuffle It is with sadness that we’ve had to let @ArdillaVerde93 go from being a member of staff here on EcchiDreams, for private reasons of a personal nature. ArdillaVerde93 posted up sometimes on our Facebook Fanpage, and has put in many years of good work with us, and we deeply appreciate all the hard work they have done. ArdillaVerde93; we hope that you stay and continue dreaming with us dreamers, and that we have many years of good times ahead. I’d also like to congratulate @SMFoxy, who has been around for quite some time now on gaining a promotion to Senior Staff as our Social Media Operations Administrator, and of course, EcchiDreams Moderator. Finally; I’d like to welcome @Whoreo, who is bringing his usual vibrant energy into EcchiDreams, as an EcchiDreams Moderator, for both the site and our Facebook Fanpage. He will start posting, I’m told: "Daily at 18:00hrs (6PM) BST/GMT starting tomorrow." Apparently, he will only be posting high-resolution art work when posting, to promote artists far and wide. He wants to bring some engaging discussions to the page, and we look forward to seeing what he has in store. Such as it is: we’ll be looking at more frequent postings from EcchiDreams on our Facebook Fanpage, and if you have Facebook already (because not many don’t), then why not become a fan of the page and take a look around? We currently have 145 people who like our page, and 150 followers;m which isn’t bad, considering we don’t usually advertise anywhere. So a big thanks to our fans and followers thus far! As always: please leave comments, suggestions, and feedback relating to this article below; I read every single comment posted, and it's my pleasure to. Article Image Artist: Cait Links: Pivix, Twitter, Patreon What can I say: I really like this piece, and I think Cait is an amazingly talented artist. It's Kashiwazaki Sena, from Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai (Haganai: I don't have many friends). That's all I have to really say on it, aside from that, she looks very warm, inviting, and friendly; hopefully a lot like EcchiDreams is. If you like to the picture, I would recommend checking out some of Cait's other work.
  5. Temaelrin

    The Summer Update

    Hello fellow EcchiDreamers! We've just completed an update, so our site now uses Invision Power Suite 4.2, which has added a lot of new features and improved already existing features such as the like system. I've also updated quite a number of EcchiDreams Specific Modifications (with some big ones still to come) as well as the applications and plugins we use to provide our service. Over the next few weeks I hope to have the bugs ironed out, but if you do find any please, let me know! Even if you're not sure, I can let you know and it doesn't bother me in the slightest, because it allows me to help you out. You can contact me via the contact form, EcchiTexts, or if I'm online, over the chatbar. There is no bug tracker anymore, that was referenced in the Halloween Update (2016) because it was a feature only enabled during the Beta of the big update, but the same bounties apply. To highlight some of the changes made to EcchiDreams: Clubs (Coming Soon) Complete Your Profile! Device Management Gallery Improvements Leaderboard Enhancements Richer Embeds "Our Picks" Reactions Clubs The clubs application (New in IPS4.2) is a way of supporting sub-communities within our site, it's a kind of social group function. However EcchiDreams being EcchiDreams; this could be used to replace the public roleplaying suite because it's exceptionally powerful at what it does and lets club leaders control what goes on in their clubs or roleplays. But it could also be used for the intended purpose, such as a Tech-Geeks club or Steam Gamers club, or even Pokémon Fan Club or Bible Black Fan Club (You get the point). We're currently not entirely sure how to implement it for our site because there are a load of options and not much in the way of clear answers (So we'd appreciate your feedback!) There are four types of clubs: Public - Anyone can see it, and post in it without even joining the club. Open - Anyone can see, and join but they can't post unless they're a member of the club. Closed - Clubs that anyone can see in the directory but joining must be approved by a Club Leader or a Club Moderator. Non-Club Members who view the club will only see the member list - not the recent activity or content areas. Private - Clubs that do not show in public and users must be invited by a Club Leader or a Club Moderator. (Staff can still see them, obviously) For closed clubs there is an approval process, that is exceptionally simple and straightforward "Accept" (Tick) or "Reject" (Cross). Leaders (And I think Moderators) get a notification when a Dreamer requests to join and the Dreamer gets a notification if they've been accepted or rejected. Club Users: Each club has three levels of user, this is why we think it is exceptionally powerful for the roleplay suites, because it allows the Club Leader to moderate the content, and the roleplays they'd run under this system, as well as appoint a single or a few club moderator(s) to do the same. However I do not believe that you can have more than one leader, the "Club Administrator" if you will. Leader - A leader has all of the permissions of a moderator, and can add other moderators. They can also add content areas, which I'll get into shortly. The club owner is automatically the leader of it. Moderators - As the name implies, Club Moderators have the ability to moderate content posted within the club. The actual permissions of the moderator is currently not set at this time, and can only be done from a Site Administrator level (Read below). Users - Anyone else that joins the clubs. The Moderator permissions feature would be perfect for large roleplays as this is currently not possible with the current format of doing it on the forums (As the topic starter is required to send an EcchiText to a staff member to deal with problem Dreamers) This why we're going to have to think about how this is implemented because what we set has to be universal across all clubs for (as far as I can tell) Club Administrators and Club Moderators. A follow up announcement will be posted explaining in detail (In the interests of transparency) what the permission sets are for Club Moderation. The current permission settings are as follows: None of these permissions are currently active, but this is what we have to work with, so any feedback is appreciated, as a Club Leader cannot pick and choose, as I said it's universal across all clubs. If you'd like more information please ask in the comments below, I will endevour to answer them. I will add my personal recommendations, and explain why I think this way. Club Leaders should be extremely careful about picking Club Moderators, if it's someone you can't trust - they shouldn't be a moderator, at this time there is no way of distinguishing permissions between the two as far as I am aware. The only difference is the Leader can appoint and fire moderators of their club, not the other way around, and a moderator can't do that to other moderators of the same club. Pin Content - This makes a topic within the club appear at the top of the topic listings, much like how pinning content works on the Forums. Perfect for rules and such. Unpin Content - Self explanatory. Edit Content - Ability to edit other people's posts. I wholly recommend that this is left off for obvious reasons. Hide Content - Hiding something doesn't mean deleting, it's more of a shadowban of that post. Hidden posts would flag the Community's Senior Staff Member, if asked or required to delete said content. Unhide Content - Unhiding hidden content. View Hidden Content - This allows the moderator to see content they've hidden. I think this should be turned on, it will allow the Club Leaders and Moderators to view the hidden content inline (As it appears, and it should obvious when it's hidden). Set Future Publishing Dates - Content that will remain hidden until a set time/date. I'm not sure at all what this should be set to, because I cannot currently think of a reason why this is needed - at all. Perhaps for special events? Even then I'd assume that the club leader should be responsible for that. View Content with a Future Publish Date - Basically it'll be visible to the Club Leader, and Moderator if enabled. If you can do the above, I think you should be able to see it otherwise it'll vanish until the date set, thus not giving you time to re-proofread your content. Move Content - To move something from one area of the club to somewhere else within the club. I personally don't think this should be enabled, because it can be quite destructive, but this is why I want to hear your feedback. Lock Content - The ability to lock a topic within the Club. I think this should be enabled. Unlock Content - The ability to unlock a locked topic. Likewise I think this should be enabled. Reply to Locked Content - So you can lock immediately, and worry about adding a reply later. Perfect for situations where it's so heated that there is a new post every second or something. Or to add rules, or something. I wish we could separate the two permissions of Club Leader and Club Moderator, because I think that should be up to the Club Leader but I'd love to hear feedback. Delete Content - To make content within the club disappear, forever. I do not believe this should be enabled because in a "Rogue Moderator" scenario they would be able to effectively destroy your club. Hiding content, is in my opinion the best way to go, that and if it's something serious (ToS violating, such as someone posting someone else's dox) then Community Staff need to see that for evidence to take appropriate action, as we do not accept screenshots due to the fact that tech savvy individuals can alter things on a page using a browser console, which can be used to frame someone. We act on hard evidence. Split and Merge Content - If someone double posts, or makes a similar topic then it allows one to merge them together. I do not believe this should be enabled because it is destructive if used by a Club Moderator who's gone rogue, this is why I recommended hide content rather than deleting content because I don't think Moderators should have access to potentially destructive tools, Community Moderators don't even have this ability. Hidden content can be made visible again, merged content on the other hand -- not so much. What is "Club Content" and why do you keep saying it?! Club Leaders can add a varity of content areas to their club(s). Forums, Calendars and Images (Exactly like the Gallery). They will appear in search results and activity streams*, users can follow them, embed links to them and so on. If a user has permission to see a forum (For example) within a club it will behave exactly like other forums they see, and the same for all kinds of content. Each content area a leader adds can have a custom title and will appear in the club's navigation menu. This means you can have multiple forums within a club and give each a different name. * Depending on type of club. I believe we can indeed do both Social Clubs and Roleplay Clubs, and have them searchable/filterable, and the club owner can select what kind of club it is. For example "General Club" for Social Clubs, "Fan Club" for well, fan clubs and "Roleplay Clubs" for Roleplays. I think this is the best way of doing it, honestly. But I am very interested in hearing ideas, and if you have a different kind of club in mind - then by all means talk to us, lets see what we can do. Complete Your Profile! In an effort to make registration quicker and easier, we now offer a stripped down registration form that only asks for required information. You can either sign in with Google+, Facebook or Twitter which is exceptionally quick and should be painless. Or fill out: Display Name Email Address Password (And Confirm Password) Birthday (Because you have to be over 18). Then check a box that says "I'm not a robot", and that you agree to the Terms of Service, then that's it. You're in*. What it will then do is allow you to use EcchiDreams as normal, and you'll be asked to make a signature, upload a profile cover and avatar which you can do whenever you like. Simple! You even get a little progress bar in your Account Settings control panel. *Email Validation Required. Depending on SpamScore, Administrator Verification may be required. Terms of Service apply. Device Management When you sign in to EcchiDreams for the first time a special "Key", a Cookie (Not the editable kind, sadly), is created to recognise your browser on subsequent logins. Which allows you to say logged into EcchiDreams without having to put in your username and password every single time you come to EcchiDreams (because that would be annoying as fuck). This then stores said information for you to see in your "Recently Used Devices" under your account settings that allows you to do a few things. Firstly you can disable automatic login from the device you're on or - say if you've left your phone somewhere, you can use your computer to sign out. It also allows you to see if your account has been compromised, if strange devices from strange locations start appearing you can sign them out. -> Then change your password, and set up Two-Factor Authorisation, which we provide through Google's Authenticator application. If someone does log into your account with an unknown device (or in an unknown location) then you'll get an be notified via Email - immediately. Please note: "Disable Automatic Login" does not disable the device from using the account, it merely means you have to log back in when you're logged out. Gallery Improvements The gallery has had some major improvements that should make using it much clearer to understand, such as picking an already existing album of yours to add images to. As is adding information to the images rather than copy and pasting information to every image, in a specific batch. To quote IPS directly, In addition to this a number of features have been added to the actual albums rather than per image, such as: Commenting Reviews Reactions Messages Featuring (Mod feature) Hiding (Mod feature) Locking (Mod feature) Reporting Searching Also - if someone uploads (for example) 50+ images to the same album rather than getting 50+ different entries in the Activity Feed they'll all be grouped into one entry, reducing the clutter. Leaderboard Enhancements Our Leaderboard just got a lot more powerful, it's well worth checking out. There are daily, weekly, monthly, yearly and even all time leaderboards, and for different sections. Getting on this leaderboard gives you a trophy in your profile that all logged in Dreamers can see. Yep we're competitive now, deal with it. You can easily search through the different categories and such within the system to see who's the top Dreamer. Richer Embeds I'll just show with some examples, because it's amazing! Time for some shilling. (Might not show if you're not logged in): A Gallery Image: A Gallery Album: A Topic: A specific post: Rules: News: YouTube (Not me, just a random video): Twitter: Facebook: And you get the point, although at the time of posting this, I do not know why there are black boxes around it. That's a bug and it'll be fixed, if you don't see that then it's been fixed already. Moving on: Our Picks This is another useful and new feature with IPS4 that can be found in the menu under "Explore", Our Picks. It is content we've hand picked by the Community Administrators. It allows us to promote content, which is consistent, an advantage that community platforms like EcchiDreams have over social media platforms. The content on our community is generally speaking, going to always be here where as a social network is all about the right here and right now, if you blink you miss it and miss out. This will mean content put in Our Picks is posted on our Facebook Fanpage and Twitter as well (I will be testing it with this article). Reactions Gone are the days of simply "Liking" posts, now you can react to them, we've always had requests such as "I wish I could love this" (I got that earlier before the update actually), and with this system you'll be able to do that. We hope to expand it but keep it manageable (IE: Not a million different reactions). It is also touch friendly (For our Mobile Dreamers). There are currently five reactions that play a part in reputation scores, they are: Standard Like - Adds 1 point to the receiver's reputation. Thanks - Adds 1 point to the receiver's reputation. Haha - Adds 1 point to the receiver's reputation. Confused - Doesn't add reputation. Sad - Doesn't add reputation. I am thinking about changing the standard like to a thumbs up, and making the like icon to "Love" which will add 2 points to the receiver's reputation. There is some talk amongst @Neptune and I about adding negative reputation but we've not used this since 2010/2011 when it was abused to bully other Dreamers by a particularly nasty piece of work that racked up hundreds of fake accounts, as well as mass down-rep'ing a lot of people's posts using bot/scripts, and pretty much successfully managed to give nearly everyone that ever posted negative reputation for no reason. So I'd love to hear your feedback on that especially. And that's it, there are many fixes and tweaks all over the place, and probably many new bugs (Because this update went way too smoothly) so be sure to check them out and let us know what you think in the comments below. I do read all of them and if it warrants it I will reply or at least leave a reaction, to show I've read it. ------------------ Article Image Artist: qbspdl (Yes, really) Links: Pixiv I chose this image because it's an artist we've never covered before and they have some very good art. You should, if you like this picture, check out their other work on the above Pixiv link. It's got great attention to detail and makes a good use of the colours, with it being quite vivid and bright, and yet it's not over saturated. It also has a very 'picture' look, as if someone was taking a picture with a camera, as it's nicely framed by the foliage of the trees and flowers. Despite some details looking simplistic (such as the birds) it's still quite nicely done, and the use of multi-toned colours for the ocean is, in my opinion perfect for this picture. Thank you for reading. We're EcchiDreams, wishing you a very Ecchi Summer.
  6. Temaelrin

    Halloween Goodies

    Hello fellow EcchiDreamers! As promised I'm making another announcement although it's probably going to be a small one, to keep you up-to-date on the changes we've been making to EcchiDreams over the last few weeks. There's been no major changes that's going to require re-learning of everything, just little changes here and there to look and be "More Presentable". In the last update I spoke of a few things that I knew needed to be fixed or changed in someway in "plans for the future" so what I will do is report on these fronts first before getting into the other cool changes. Not that much has been changed here; the forms are still the same format and so on, but we have included a few things that I personally think is good to have on the page in that section for both mobile and desktop users alike. I've put some stuff into the sidebar of the Roleplayer Preferences that are relevant to what roleplayers are looking for as well as a roleplaying advert (Link requires being logged in), as well as the latest roleplays from our Public Roleplaying Section, and latest BBS posts from our Private Roleplayers Bulletin Board and finally a Dashboard button for easier navigation. Of course I should point out in being completely honest: When I spoke of the changes in the last announcement, I spoke of bigger changes that meant an easier time actually filling out the form; and viewing other preference sheets. This is still being designed, worked out, and there is still no date. Similarly the Private Roleplayers BBS has had a few changes done to it too, specifically in the sidebar. This is still being worked on, and I'll be working through November to get this done by the promised deadline. I will say this however - we've scrapped the bug tracker system. So, this is obviously a big thing that I will need to discuss next, but before that... We have a lot of avenues for getting the support you need, as quickly as possible. You can: Use the "Contact Us" link at the bottom left of our page. Send an EcchiText to any of the staff members. Ask a question in the Community Questions forum; this is where anyone from the community, or staff can answer you. Popular questions will even make it to our FAQ's. Try and find a tutorial. Or even make one. Read our FAQ's. This is complete but it also has been pretty much scrapped all together. "Pretty much" being the operative words there. I have decided to do away with the bug tracker (at least from the public point of view) because it either made more confusion for everyone involved, and because most people sent Manni, Neptune or even me an EcchiText saying they 'think' they've found a bug. That seems like a pretty simpler solution to me, and boy do we need simpler solutions for things. With that said I will still be handing out 'rewards' or 'bounties' in the form of EcchiCredits to those that tell us these things and we deeply appreciate it too. The bounties are as follows, for non-security related bugs: Badly worded/Grammatical/Spelling Mistakes - Variable Low Severity - 100 EcchiCredits Medium Severity - 250 EcchiCredits High Severity - 500 EcchiCredits Severe Severity - Upto 1,500 EcchiCredits Critical Severity - Upto 2,500 EcchiCredits The bounties are as follows for security related (which are extremely rare) bugs: Minor Security Flaw/Bug - 2,500 EcchiCredits Major Security Flaw/Bug - 5,000 EcchiCredits Critical Security Flaw/Bug - 10,000 EcchiCredits + Bonus To report a bug; just send any of the staff an EcchiText, you'll be credited in the bug report. The first person to report a specific bug is the person who will get the EcchiCredits; as a result anyone who reports a pre-existing bug will be told that we know about it, but thank you. I think this system is very fair. IMPORTANT REMINDER! When you tell us of a bug, any screenshots, the page URL and your browser name (and version if you can help it) would be valuable information to us for tracking it down. Steps you took to get to the bug is very important to us; as it allows us to try and reproduce the bug. Thanks! This system is now up! Test for yourself with this link:- https://google.com/ you should get something like this: Maybe I can apply a little humour to it? Like you are now probably leaving the dark corners of the internet. Lol. There is no updates to the Awards and EcchiCredit systems; other than we updated the EcchiCredit one to fix some bugs that staff picked up on. Now we get down to what I didn't announce would be changing but has in fact changed other than the myaid of tweaks and fixes no one wants me to bore them with. Homepage Changes On our homepage (when you're logged in of course) I've made a number of changes that has radically altered the layout of the page. Such as latest news articles has a prominent feature under the userbar. The sidebar has also been re-ordered, so that the Roleplay Adverts appear above the fold. Profile Changes The profile cover is now slightly larger! @Neptune pointed out that the profile covers were too small, and as such it sucked as to what images you could put in there and how much of the image would be displayed. This has now been increased so you can make more out of your image of choice to make your profile, your own. Site-wide/Non-specific or Misc Changes We, proudly, use a "Skin" from IPSFocus, called Shift, which I've heavily modified for use on our website, who have made a number of improvements since the last update, such as tweaks for mobile users with the colour picker and general optimisations as well as minor tweaks. You may have noticed axes, spiders and bats around - this is because (built into what you get from IPSFocus) seasonal things during Halloween, Christmas and Valentines Day. We've always (except for last year) done something over Christmas and this year we'll be doing something beyond flicking a switch. The Roleplayer Advert Terms and Conditions have also been changed to increase the amount of days you get with an advert post from 14 days to 28 days at the same cost. Post Counts A lot of you will have noticed that your post count has plummeted (including mine which was at 9,200 odd and now is down to 4,600 or so...) This is because of a cleanup that removed topics that haven't even been visible for a better half of this year (such as when we did the roleplaying changes). Of course I've also cleaned out my old development suite which had lots of posts and such that were made during the Beta period, which was never (and never intended to be) public. This is more of a correction to the record, rather than just us arbitrarily going on a deleting spree. News Articles Our news section has had massive changes. Previously our articles were in the same format as much of the site, and it wasn't that great... Now they actually look like articles rather than in the exact same format as the tutorial section. Obviously we'll be making tweaks over the coming weeks but this is an example, which you can see as you read this too: Because of the changes to the news articles and their altered the formatting: Limits that were originally placed, such as the fact that we only used JPGs that were 200x200 (doesn't look good on the new format) have been lifted. I plan on rolling this out to the community articles section by next year as well, so we can see better quality things coming out a lot more frequently in future. And that's pretty much it, in the spirit of keeping to our facebook stuff I will be doing something else different at the end of each News Article, depending on if its wanted or not (Leave a comment). I use images that I pick up from places like Pixiv, Yande.re and so on, as such these images have copyrights which absolutely belong to the respected artists. In the keeping with our tradition though, I'll be giving more than just an image credit by saying what I personally like about the image, why I chose it and where you can go to find more of their art. This - I hope - will be seen as a sign of respect rather than "OUR IMAGE NAOW!!!" which is not what it is at all. I want more artists, and I want the artists that have done a good job on something to get the credit they're due, and to funnel people who genuinely like their art to seek them out. That said if you're an artist and you're not happy with this - please get in touch with me and I will add you to a DNP (Do not post) list that will apply here on EcchiDreams, and on Facebook (or wherever else we do this service). Image Credit: Artist: RedEyeHare Links: ArtStation | Pixiv | Deviant Art Other than the fact that it was relevant I used this picture because it's exactly what I was looking for when I thought 'Ecchi, Halloween, Good Quality and Potentially Triggering' and I really like it. I think the level of detail and yet not looking complicated, is something that seems to be a dying art. I think it's perfectly balanced and absolutely reasonable. The colours work well together, and of course the rather devilishly attractive lady is very fitting for the picture. It's very well drawn, indeed! It's certainly something I appreciated looking at and I hope you do too. I highly recommend checking out their art - I've had a look myself and I've found a few other pictures I really liked the looks of too. Thank you for reading. We're EcchiDreams, wishing you a very Ecchi Halloween.
  7. Temaelrin

    EcchiDreams is out of Beta!

    Hello fellow EcchiDreamers! In July of last year, we started the process called ‘The Big Update’ Open-beta, where we set out to finish our major update to the community now that it was on the IPS4 software made by Invision Power Services. Today, 6th September 2016, we come out of Beta into “Full Release”. I want to thank members of the community who did come out and give us feedback, as well as the other members of staff who’ve all been working hard during the past year in this heavy developmental process. We expect that updates will continue; however, the main bulk of this big update is now over, and we can actually start getting back to what we love more. Other Features and Updates There have been so many changes, some of which didn’t stay for long during the beta period, and I apologise for not getting announcements on those during this time; I’ve also been quiet on the announcement front, so I hope to correct this and cover as many new features as possible in this announcement. There are changes that did get their own announcements as planned, however: Leave of Absence Improvements - This is where we discussed the evolution of our LoA system; where we turned what was once a “post as a topic” thing into an account setting option. Help Section and more Updates - In this announcement, we talk about the new community help section, as well as information on our EcchiTheme Update, Chatbar (EcchiChat), Activity Feed, Account Deactivation and so on. New Feature: Community Dashboard - A still somewhat new idea to improve on with feedback. A friendly GUI navigation menu, that is mobile and desktop compatible. Roleplay Suite Updates - Major changes to the scenario roleplay area, and grand overhaul of the entire section. Roleplay Suite Updates (Part 2) - Did I mention… Grand overhaul? This announcement focused on the Private Roleplayers Bulletin Board, as well as a new ‘EcchiApp’ called a Sandbox. Community Help and Support Area Updates https://ecchidreams.com/help/ The Community Help and Support area has been radically updated since this announcement, and it’s become the one stop place for everything involving help and support on EcchiDreams. There is a new feature as well as an old feature that have now been blended into these sections. FAQ Section https://ecchidreams.com/faq/ The Frequently Asked Questions section is something we had tried to do before, back in 2011-2013. We’ve tied this into the Community Help Area to help those that might be confused a little when they first sign up, as well as veterans to EcchiDreams who might not have been on in a while alike. Bug Tracker https://ecchidreams.com/help/bugs/ The bug tracker is somewhere that Dreamers can post bugs they’ve found. Usually there is a bounty in the form of EcchiCredits for each one found. We are always vigilant for bugs, and attempt to correct them as quickly as possible. We thank everyone who reports them and we welcome these mistakes being pointed out to us with open arms. Bugs are classified in a number of ways: Spelling/Grammatical Mistakes - If something is spelt incorrectly or words don’t flow correctly, then we welcome this and will update them as quickly as possible. Permission Error Bugs - Something that you should have access to, but don’t. Or something you shouldn’t, but do. Application Faults - An App that has gone wrong or doesn’t function in the way it should. Security Flaws/Faults - Something that allows you to do something you’re really not supposed to do, which causes security issues. Things such as being able to hijack other accounts and read other people's EcchiTexts for example (These are exceptionally rare - and offer the biggest bounty) A link (that isn’t in a post) that doesn’t work correctly. And so on... Major ToS Updates https://ecchidreams.com/rules/terms-of-service-r1/ The Terms of Service on EcchiDreams have been radically updated, and now goes in the complete opposite direction to a number of sites online today; specifically one of our major changes, Section 15 under Offensive or Inappropriate Posting:- This protection doesn’t rely on the First Amendment of the United States Constitution; instead we are going to call upon Article 19 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We don’t expect to be perfect; we expect mistakes to be made, but we will try to minimise these mistakes and correct any that are made as soon as possible. We also outlined some of the new features and updated the roleplay section. Lastly, from now going forwards, all documents in ecchidreams.com/rules will have the document’s last updated date in an effort to be more open and transparaent about changes. The last updated signature will be located at the top of the document: EcchiCredits https://ecchidreams.com/ecchicredits/ EcchiCredits has made a come back, although it’s not yet up to the same level of features as the previous one. With the above link you should be able to see the transactions of the entire community (as this is an open and transparent system). We aim to slowly improve on this over time, making the EcchiCredit system more useful as an internal contribution-based economy within EcchiDreams. So far, the only thing you can really use EcchiCredits for on this site is the Roleplayer Adverts, or if someone is selling their on site services for EcchiCredits. https://ecchidreams.com/help/tutorials/roleplay/more-information-public-roleplaying-r26/ Homepage Improvements https://ecchidreams.com/ The Homepage has had some very major changes since we opened back up a year ago into Beta. For a start, we’ve made the homepage for guests more informative, and much quicker to load. We’ve explained as best as we could, whilst keeping it concise, what goes on on EcchiDreams, as well as what we do and why. For people who are logged in, the homepage is useful for another purpose, although this is still experimental, and we hope to improve it with feedback as time goes on. When you’re logged in you will be welcomed by site depending on what time of day/night it is; we hope to eventually make this change on an hourly basis. At the moment it contains everything that used to be on the community index page. Such as: Personalised Greetings Message What staff are online right now. A userbar that shows a piece of your profile cover, avatar, “dreams” count (posts on the Forums/Roleplays and images in the Gallery), as well as reputation. Dreamer of the Month widget. RP Advert Latest public and custom posts and topics (With Private ones coming soon) Dashboard buttons Latest Gallery Uploads Recent Status Updates (with the ‘Read More’ option that I touched on in the first announcement) Who’s been online in the last 24 hours. Who’s online right now. We have also made sure to make it as mobile and desktop friendly as possible. Further Roleplay Section Enhancements https://ecchidreams.com/community/forum/68-roleplay-suite/ There have been a number of updates to our Roleplay Suite, as we’ve now finished the bulk of it and even most minor tweaks. The section has fundamentally changed since EcchiDreams first started, and even since we first went into Beta last year because of the Big Update. As such, we’ve written a handful of guides to help you get started, as well as made some enhancements. Roleplay Adverts Enhancements https://ecchidreams.com/dashboard/roleplayers/adverts Last year, we introduced Roleplay Adverts; the idea was that people who wanted to advertise their roleplays on EcchiDreams could do so. You might be thinking “I bet I have to pay for this…”, and you’d be right… though we only accept EcchiCredits. We’ve made this system better, so you can keep a track of all roleplay adverts running on our site: Each one also contains a log including things such as when it was last active, when it last ended, how many times it’s been run, and an advert status, as seen below: The statuses are: Awaiting Approval - Each advert is manually approved before being put into the advertising system, which then goes live on EcchiDreams. This is the default setting when submitting an advert. Awaiting More Information - It was manually checked; however, there are pieces of information missing or unclear. We’ll send you an EcchiText in these circumstances. Rejected - The advert in question violated our advertising policy, and will be hidden from all members but you and the staff. You’ll either get an EcchiText explaining why it was rejected, or a comment will be left. Approved - The advert is accepted and is currently running on EcchiDreams. Approved, Not Started Yet - The advert is accepted, and will begin running on EcchiDreams on the date you specified. Expired - The Advert was accepted, and ran for the duration of the advertising period without problems. Campaign Suspended - This could be for a myriad of reasons. If the advert is reported for false advertising for example, and it’s been confirmed by staff, then the advert will be suspended. If the roleplay goes under construction, or the dreamer has been banned or they’ve had to leave on an emergency Leave of Absence. It’s not necessarily wrong doing. If you didn’t literally ask us to suspend the campaign we’ll tell you that it has been. In the future we’ll inform you how many views and clicks your advert got during its runtime. Public Roleplay Tags https://ecchidreams.com/community/forum/78-public-roleplaying/ During the Roleplay Overhaul, we changed the tags of the public roleplay section, so that they mentioned their Difficulty Rating. However, a Dreamer brought up an issue we hadn’t considered while doing it. We’ve since changed these, and have updated the guides to reflect the changes. The new prefixes that go near the topic title are as follows: Open - Open to everyone. You would require your roleplayers to fill out a Character ID. This doesn’t stop you from putting in your own restrictions though. For example you could only want human characters or something, it just means that people can make a Character ID and start roleplaying with no troubles. Invite Only - If you're setting up an RP for a group of your friends, or you'll be inviting others to the roleplay, then this is the option for you. Dreamers might still ask if they can join; and should take no for an answer, if that's your choice. If you want you can choose to put “I will ask you, don’t ask me.” Or something to that effect in your opening page, under the rules. Apply to RP (Open) - You want people to apply before roleplaying. Great for higher difficulty roleplays, where you want to screen roleplayers, for quality reasons first, there’s no reason why you can’t even ask to see a Roleplayer Preferences sheet as in theory, if filled out correctly this should contain a lot of information you’ll want to read in order to decide if that person is good enough to roleplay with. You'll need to put the detailed application instructions in your OOC or Extra Information Topic, wherever you feel it's appropriate really and link it from your opening post. You can take applications over EcchiTexts or the OOC, which ever you are more comfortable with. Apply to RP (Full) - You wouldn't and really shouldn’t start with this. When you have everyone you need to start the roleplay, you can edit your first post and turn it from open to full. No CID Required - This is rare; outside of casual and cannot be used with Intermediate Roleplays or higher... Usually. If in doubt message a staff member first. Game Masters Corner https://ecchidreams.com/community/forum/118-game-masters-corner/ The Game Master’s Corner is a brand new feature to the Public Roleplaying Section. The idea behind this is to be a place where you can talk with fellow Dreamers when setting up a roleplay, to bounce ideas, and even get people who are willing to join the roleplay. Sandbox https://ecchidreams.com/community/forum/9-sandbox/ If you are trying to design your page for the roleplay section, write a guide, store a note, or maybe get to grips with how our editor works, and so on, and you’d like somewhere to test or build it before making it live, this is the forum for you. Only you and staff members can see your topics here. We highly recommend against using the sandbox to store passwords, accounts, and personal (considered) private notes for two simple reasons: as mentioned before, staff can see this forum and all topics within it, and it's just not a very smart idea in general. Roleplay Guides https://ecchidreams.com/help/tutorials/roleplay/ We’ve added a fair few roleplay guides to get you started with our Roleplay Suite; they are extensive, fully detailed guides, written by roleplayers for roleplayers. Of course, you are free to make a guide if you want to as well; you’ll be credited as it’s author and shown automatically as the poster of the guide. The guides we’ve included so far are: Public Roleplay: The Game Master’s Guide - This is an extremely large guide that is great when you might be stuck for ideas, or what to do, when making your own public roleplay. We talk about the things you should consider here, such as what the guide covers, stuff to think about before you start making your roleplay, what the premise, plots and storylines will be, how your universe works, the characters and NPC’s within the story, opening post formats, tips, tricks, and protips. It’s an all encompassing guide that will help you get started making your own roleplays. Introductions: Crash Course in Roleplaying - If you’re new to roleplaying, or new to EcchiDreams, and would like a ‘crash course’ where we explain what roleplaying is, what it’s about, define what the abbreviations, terminology and roleplaying jargon is on the site, start here. We talk about the ground rules, and what most people expect, or don’t like or want in their roleplays, how to join a roleplay on EcchiDreams, and even briefly touch on how to create a roleplay on EcchiDreams. Private Roleplaying and You - This brief guide tells you, in a simple enough way, how to create a Private Roleplay. It also outlines some baseline rules in regards to the section. Premium Roleplaying and You - Same as the previous, except for the fact that it’s for Premium Roleplays. Public Roleplaying and You - Same as the previous two, except it’s for the Public Roleplays. Roleplaying Etiquette - A guide that helps you with the etiquette when roleplaying, and interacting other roleplayers like making sure to read posts properly, and to not have your character suddenly interrupt the interaction between characters when it is unwelcomed and not discussed before hand. This is especially handy for newer roleplayers, who want to know how to treat other roleplayers. How to make a roleplay character - A guide that helps you with the process of creating a character. It goes through a step by step process of creating a character that shows you some tips and tricks to make a good, detailed character. More Information: Public Roleplaying - Something that is linked to the homepage under this topic. It’s a basic informational page that goes into more information about Public Roleplaying. More Information: Private Roleplaying - The same as the previous; except it goes into more information about Private Roleplaying. More Information: Premium Roleplaying - The same as the previous two, except it pertains to the Premium Roleplays. EcchiDreams Standard Character ID - This is adapted from the Character IDs from the old Scenario roleplays. Its purpose is to be a default that Game Masters can use for their own roleplay. It’s not a rule to have to use this, but it’s a good point to start from. Add or take away from it as much as you like; you’re free to use it. EcchiDreams Standard Roleplaying Rules - Again, this is adapted from the Rules of the old Scenario Roleplays. Like with the Character ID, its intended purpose is to be a default set of rules that a Game Master can apply to their own roleplay. Rules can be removed, or added depending on what the Game Master wants. It’s not a rule to have to use this, but it’s a good starting point. Please note that, regardless of the rules you use for your roleplay, you are still bound by the standard rules of EcchiDreams. Roleplay Difficulty Guide - This outlines the difficulties found within the Public Roleplays. It also gives you an idea of what to expect from a roleplay of that difficulty, such as detailed character IDs and extra information for an Expert Roleplay. General Navigational Tweaks Site Wide We’ve made navigation slightly easier on EcchiDreams; for example, clicking ‘Explore’ will no longer take you to a page, as this was frustrating for many EcchiDreamers. In addition, we’ve made the navigational menu follow a certain, logically set behaviour, to make it less of a nightmare. In the most recent beta update we also gave each menu its own icon, as well as turned ‘+Create’ into a pencil, and gave everything under that its own icon too. A little while ago, we also enhanced the search button to make it easier to search for things on EcchiDreams. As you start typing in what you’re looking for, it will scan the indexes and find the thing you’re looking for based on what you type in. The more you type the more accurate it becomes. In a way, it predicts what you might be looking for in a similar way to autocomplete. We listened to the numerous complaints about how navigating EcchiDreams was like ‘trying to navigate around a Kraken’ and, well, we hope that this helps you tell the tentacles from the tits. Activity Stream https://ecchidreams.com/discover/ A feature of IPS that we simply love. Discover the latest and newest dreamers, posts, topics, images, and other content (or ‘Dreams’) with our Activity Stream. It is an evolution and enhancement of our VNC (View New Content) system from before the update. If you, for example, have an RSS feed on your phone or computer, then you can stay up-to-date with everything EcchiDreams through this feed. All the lists update automatically, and can easily be expanded and condensed. There are several streams you can choose from such as: Site Wide Activity Only Unread Content Content you Started Content you Follow Content from Dreamers you Follow And so on. And if you think we were done there, then boy, do we have a surprise for you. In addition to our default streams, you can also customise and make your own streams to better discover the content you want, which you can even share with other Dreamers; for example, if you want a stream when someone posts a new roleplayer preferences sheet, or if there have been any updates in the news and announcements area, or even if someone posts a private roleplayers bulletin notice - you can totally do that, and all of them have their own RSS feeds too. Our Activity Streams is extremely customisable and powerful. EcchiText Security https://ecchidreams.com/ecchitexts/ If you’re sent an EcchiText by a member of staff on this community, you are treated to this verification badge that allows you to easily check and verify that the person who sent you the message is indeed a member of staff. Gallery Updates https://ecchidreams.com/gallery/ The gallery has had some new categories put in, such as Character IDs and Extra Informations. The idea is that you can create albums in there as appropriate, so you can easily find them later. The gallery has also been somewhat opened up again. Unlike previously; you can have a practically infinite number of albums to upload your images to, rather than just three like you used to have. Languages Site Wide One of the major criticisms we had was the classic American/British English divide, where the site would spell things like ‘Color’ as ‘Colour’. Obviously this made the American Grammar Police shit their bed; likewise, when we changed it to American English, we had problems from the British Grammar Police. Well, in order to settle this once and for all, there are now two languages you can chose from: English (USA) and English (UK), although it doesn’t change spelling within Dreamers posts or anything like that. What it does change is the date format (MM/DD/YYYY > DD/MM/YYYY), which can be quite confusing for some, especially on a day like 05/06/1990 which could be either the sixth of May, or the fifth of June, and 06/05/1990 which has the same problem. If you’re from the UK or used to UK Formats, then selecting English (UK) will get rid of this headache for you. Likewise if you’re from the USA, set it to English (USA) Dreamer of the Month https://ecchidreams.com/dotm/ Dreamer of the Month is something new we wanted to try out. Dreamers are elected by others in the community to become the Dreamer of the Month for the next month, and the person with the most votes becomes Dreamer of the Month. We plan on introducing awards (profile trophies) to be given to Dreamers who win this. Plans for the Future Despite all of this, there are many plans of the future, some of which we will share with you today. It’s largely dependent on feedback we get (if any), and we look forward to further empowering this community to do more. Some of the improvements we’re prepared to talk about today are... Improvements to Roleplayer Preferences We have some ideas penned out for an update to our EcchiApp: Roleplayer Preferences. At the moment, this is rather basic, albeit very functional; however, we want to bring more information, settings, and customisability to it, while keeping the interface easy to use and intuitive. The basic idea is that you’ll want to spend ten or fifteen or so minutes filling it all out, and yet only take a fraction of that time actually reading it, because while you might not be editing it everyday, it could be read everyday. We are currently working on an update to this, although we don’t have any time scales or release deadlines, as the improvements are in the very early stages. Community Help and Support Unification Hopefully before Christmas 2016, we’ll have made an update to the Community Help and Support Section, to help Dreamers better get the help they need. By this time, we hope to have more FAQs in our new FAQ system, as well bring in the bug tracker to be a part of the section. By January 2017, getting help and support should be a lot easier and more intuitive, as well as being mobile and guest compatible. Bug Bounties We aim to be more open as to how many EcchiCredits people will earn through reporting bugs, in the interests of openness and transparency. This should be more clear in the bug tracker section before the end of October. External Site Link Information Hopefully, by next week, we should have a new system in place that alerts you that you’re leaving EcchiDreams when clicking a link that takes you away from this site. This will also host our disclaimer that we’re not responsible for the content of the site you’re being linked to, nor is it to be considered an endorsement, yadda yadda yadda… You know, all that ‘legal’ stuff, and information that should basically say something along the lines of ‘If you believe this link to be malicious, spam, or otherwise in violation of our ToS, please go back and report the post so that it can be reviewed by staff.’ Award System To gain little profile trophies for doing tasks on EcchiDreams; like ‘Achievement Get’ things. This is in very, very early stages of development, and isn’t likely to come about until after EcchiCredits are a lot more useful. And finally… EcchiCredits We realise there isn’t a lot you can do with the EcchiCredits at the moment. This is something we’re looking at further working with a third-party developer to make better. The current system is primarily in place so you can earn EcchiCredits for when the system does get its own major overhaul. We fully intend on making this worth it in the end, and will happily take suggestions on what to do with them. There is no roadmap for this, or any fixed timelines, but I promise I will keep you up-to-date as things develop, with full announcements even if it’s not good news. Article Image Credit: Wolfy-Nail
  8. Mega Announcement: The Big Update! Article Image Credit: 米倉ちき。 This announcement contains a brief overview of the information about the big update; including revealing to you all what our secret updates were. There are a lot of areas and sub-areas to cover, so much in fact that I will include a list and get straight to it. We would love to hear what you think, your feedback, any comments and questions, there is no such thing as a stupid question, seriously. This topic is very picture heavy, so it might take a while to load on slower connections. I can confirm that Project: EcchiDreams 2014 - was the intermediary between the much older version of EcchiDreams and the Big Update, we've collected all the data from our open beta’s and put it to good use. All screenshots shown, show things that might not look the same in the final version as they're from the Beta. Without further ado; let’s begin. Forum Software Changes EcchiDreams will be using Invision Power Suite 4 (IPS4); which is by far the best software Invision Power Services have released to date. Although we're still waiting on an third party theme (Which I then have to edit) and a third party modification (iCredits) which again I have to modify for use as EcchiCredits. This is an update on Invision Power Board 3.4 that we’re currently using that introduces a lot of modernised and new features. I will attempt to cover the monumental list of changes that affect EcchiDreamers. We have to give Invision Power Services credit here; they did a fantastic job in IPS4. If I quote them here you can find their quote by searching the internet for the entire quote, as a source. Fully Mobile Compatible and Responsive Previously we could only do partial support for Mobile devices, this was in part due to limitations with the Invision software. Now, however it’s built into the core and operates just as well on a desktop or laptop as it does on a mobile (and even some handheld gaming consoles!). Anything we add in will be as close to mobile compatible as the software will allow us to make it. With more and more mobile devices browsing the web this is a most welcome feature indeed. Our site should seamlessly switch from portrait to landscape, redesign and shuffle itself to fit your browser window (responsive design) which you can test on a desktop PC by simply resizing the window. The interface is designed for both tap/touch and mouses. Profile Overhaul Thanks to the guys over at IPS, the Profile Section has been overhauled so much that it’ll be virtually unrecognisable when you first go on it, and yet it’ll be so easy to use and intuitive I’m sure many of you will love it. Your profile is "a powerful tool", and it’s become a lot more useful. First I will go through IPS changes; then changes that we’ve made to the profile, on top of that. Header Images In our current version of EcchiDreams the Header Image is something we introduced to replace the monstrous background image, which was implemented by IPS in 3.x, even by their own admission this “didn’t work well when the software was integrated into an existing website design” and no, it really didn’t. This and the Avatar (Which is circular now) was something we covered in an informal announcement back in February to show how easy it was to upload images from a desktop or laptop, of which I did a 39 second video demonstrating how easy and quick it was. Reputation The reputation of the user is shown in the profile like before; but now it’s shown across the community too. Comments, EcchiTexts, Reviews, Posts, you name it - your reputation is open and transparent across the community, it serves more of a purpose. You can earn Reputation by making posts that people will press the “Like” button for. In the roleplay section as a "good habit" and a form of acknowledgement between the people you're roleplaying with it's used the most. To say "I read the post, I liked it and you should do more like this." Not everyone does this, of course. But it's one example of many that it's used for, at the end of the day it's still (and should always be) up to whomever taps/clicks that like button. We have made the conscious decision not to revert back to the Negative/Positive reputation buttons that we had in 2009, that said if there’s a post you like - press or tap the like button. Both you and the person who gets their content liked should (at least currently, anyway) get EcchiCredits for it. Warnings Your infraction sheet is visible to you; in the interests of transparency. Without leaving your profile you can look at your warnings and see why you got them, who by and such. Currently the warning system is semi-transparent; meaning in most circumstances we will not make issued warnings public or allow Dreamers to see each other’s warning points and/or reasons. You’ll be able to see when the warning expires, how much points were applied to your account and what punishments if any were applied as well. Warnings can (finally) be revoked by Senior Staff and/or Community Administrators, as you can see in the image below, it’s short, sweet and tidy. Followers Invision Power have replaced “Friends” with Followers, but they’re not the same - which is why everyone is starting with 0 followers. Both IPS and EcchiDreams understand that some people might not want to be followed for any given reason, and this can be turned off and back on again from your profile. When you follow someone you’re notified of content they make. A knock on effect from this, is that it affects the EcchiChat Bar. As the button that read “Chat (?)” with “?” being a number only displaying how many of your friends are currently online, will now display all users that are online, including staff. So asking a question to a member of staff has never been easier, and hopefully this will improve response times providing we’re actually online and/or not idling. Again this too can be turned off for whatever reason. If you don’t wish to appear online, you can of course turn this off. “About Me” Your “About Me” is still in the profile, but instead of it being displayed as the first thing inside the profile it’s moved to it’s own tab within the page. If you haven’t filled it out; it won’t appear. Thus keeping your profile tidy. Recent Visitors Shows your most recent profile visitors; which you can enable/disable at will. You either click “Enable” to enable it or the “X” in the corner of the block to disable it. Follow/Message Dreamer Buttons You can send an EcchiText other Dreamers from the profile without leaving their profile page, as well as follow a Dreamer by clicking the follow button; if they have these features enabled. Your Content In addition to the activity stream which shows content any given user has posted recently, you can also view every single piece of content they've ever done (If you’re able to see it publicly, IE If you have the permissions for it in the first place). It is done within the profile; again and transitions smoothly and easily. You can even view all the albums and images the given Dreamer has posted to the gallery, again if you have the permissions for it. Status Feed As I had already somewhat informally announced; you are now able to make your statuses coloured, bolded, underlined, etc. I don’t know if anyone remembers but once; a long time ago you could like Statuses, but we lost that ability in EDC 5.0; about three years ago because of severe bugs and compatibility issues. It is now apart of the Core software and counts towards reputation, so it’s actually a returning feature for us. A great request by the community and something I wanted to see done, there is (finally) no longer a limit on comment replies. Although I am working on a way that will only load a few lines and have a “READ MORE” if it’s over - say... Six lines, I will make a follow up if I can indeed make this possible. Staff Directory As a replacement for the Moderator Team page which is quite unintuitive we have a Staff Directory which allows you easy access the list of all staff members on EcchiDreams, their roles and contact information. General Changes Announcement Changes The traditional way in which we deliver announcements is changing, back in July/August 2013 we started trialing a new system of delivering news and announcement updates to the EcchiDreams Community as a whole. Granted we haven’t made an announcement (in an official sense) for over a year, mainly because all of the development energy has been directed towards the Big Update with exception to bug fixes, minor changes and security updates. Instead of posting in a forum (The Announcement Forum) all senior staff, and community administrators will be able to post articles which can be commented on, and rated (through a simplistic five star rating). The Announcement Forum will be removed completely and all registered Dreamers will be able comment on said announcements. We hope to keep people up-to-date more often, but sometimes there might literally be nothing to report. Although we have got plans from some new things to roll out over the course of 2015 and 2016; where we will shift our focus on to content creation rather than development; as announced in “Updates 3: Staff Applications System, One on One Roleplaying and Project: EcchiDreams 2014 Announcement”. All old announcement articles will be removed due to incompatibilities, and all other articles will be messaged back to their respective authors to repost in the new system as I will explain later in the announcement. Radical Staff “Reforms” The Staff Structure will be changing, before we had staff separated by sections this worked well at first, however the effectiveness didn’t last long for the Gallery Section at all, then the Forum Section started suffering and although it took longer for this structure to fall through it stopped working for the Roleplay Section, it also never worked for EcchiSocial either. The new system is simpler; easier to understand for all parties involved and has flexibility to expand as we expand. This is how it looked before hand: Site AdministratorsSite Moderators (Global Moderators; with more power than sectional Administrators) Forum AdministratorForum Moderator Roleplay AdministratorRoleplay Moderator Gallery AdministratorGallery Moderator EcchiSocial AdministratorEcchiSocial Staff How the new system will look: Community AdministratorsSenior Staff Staff EcchiSocial Staff Under the previous system; no one had power over certain sections of the site over than the sectional staff that were assigned to it. This left quite a number of us paralyzed in their responsibilities and unable to do anything about it, although we are more than aware that there are certain individuals (previous staff) who were just never active; at all. This will be changing under tough new rules for all staff present and future, and all staff will be retrained again until it is gotten right. Being a member of staff here is voluntary but it’s also a responsibility; one that hasn’t been taken seriously in the past. That is going to change. Performance Enhancements On top of IPS’s performance enhancements, we’ve also done some major improvements, for example the homepage is more controlled in terms of what images are displayed on there and how, which means download times are decreased which means quicker page loading times. The huge image slider is gone and replaced with a much smaller, much lighter version that just displays less images, and gives you just about as much information. It also contains a clear and visible warning; that this site is for adults only. Above tests are the before and afters which was ran on the homepages. Performance has been a strong concern from some Dreamers in the past; and it had been a concern of mine for a very long time, you see... EcchiDreams has a Bandwidth Addiction problem, and we're putting it into rehab. Each update with EcchiDreams since has been to speeding it up without compromising security, the Big Update is no exception. Whilst there’s plenty of room to improve - this will be done in subsequent updates. What the above mentioned tests didn’t tell you was the total page size after the first image of the image slider. Size of first image on the image slider in the first test: 150 KB (153,688 bytes) In total the images on the image slider in the first test total: 1.34 MB (1,410,544 bytes) Corrected fully loaded “Total Page Size” of first test: 2.48MB (2,600,469 bytes) Size of first image on the image slider in the second test: 95.8 KB (98,172 bytes) In total the images on the image slider in the second test total: 179 KB (183,557 bytes) Corrected fully loaded “Total Page Size” of second test: 620.2KB (635,085 bytes) Total reduction: 1.87MB (75.57%) - the kick to this is; this is going on the data provided by the Beta, which is subject to change on the live version. My point stands; it’s an improvement and it is something I want to keep that way. Full Emoji Support on Desktop and Mobile Devices We’re replacing our Emoticons completely in favour of Emoji; and to assist with cross compatibility between mobile devices and desktop/laptop devices. Yes there are over 800 to choose from and they’re all uniform across all devices (which means they’ll all be the same drawings no matter what you’re using) supplied by EmojiOne (Open Source). SSL now uses Modern Cryptography EcchiDreams now uses “Modern Cryptography” rather than “Obsolete Cryptography” for the SSL security of our website, at the expense of supporting older browsers that wouldn’t be able to render our site anyway. This was applied before the Big Update for security reasons. We still have no interest, and now no incentive to revert back to the unsecured “HTTP” system that we were on before, as most of the system is now built around the fact that we use “HTTPS”. On the 7th May 2015 we had to make an emergency change to the Terms of Service surrounding images served from non-HTTPS sites. To quote: “All external images posted to EcchiDreams in (but not limited to) signatures, profile, comments, must be served over “HTTPS”. If this isn’t possible then please download the image to your PC and upload it to one of your albums on the Gallery, and post the image that way. Posts that contain external images served over "HTTP" will be removed.” Broken SSL is a bad thing. In the Big Update this will no longer matter, as it has the ability to detect if the image you’re posting has a HTTPS accessible version, if it doesn’t it’ll serve the image through a SSL proxy, which means it won’t break your secure connection to our site. TL;DR:- HTTP is insecure. HTTPS is secure. This is a great thing. Roleplayer Preferences Section - This was already announced 21 April 2015 - 06:00hrs (GMT) although we’re somewhat stumped at the response it’s gotten and has ultimately bolstered our cynicism on if this announcement will even get a response. Custom Roleplay Owners and Custom Roleplay Players will have badges in their Preferences Section. The new system is by no means perfect; but it’s much better than before and we hope to improve it as time goes on. Yes we will monitor it and assess how it’s being used and what we can do to improve it; but of course we rely on your feedback too. Notification of Planned Updates (Informally Announced) We will be notifying all logged in Dreamers whenever EcchiDreams goes down for scheduled updates or maintenance, with at least 6 days notice, from now on we will always book these scheduled downtimes with at least a week in advance. You’ll be able to see these on the Calendar. They should appear prominently on the Forums. Mood System Changes The mood system has been overhauled and contains a more simplified array of faces, which display in various areas throughout the site like so: As you can see in “Hovercard (2)” and “Profile (3)” you can set a piece of custom text you can also see it on desktops when hovering over the icon in “Postbit (1)”. The custom text is limited to 48 characters; so be creative. xP This is where you’d set it: Ability to *poke* other Dreamers No I'm not kidding. I’d be interested in seeing how this plays out on our community. Roleplay Changes The big update has a lot of changes to the Roleplay Suite. Things have been added, changed and removed. The aim was to give Dreamers a Roleplaying experience that suits their needs, and tastes while also giving them a challenge. Before, there was simply the Roleplay Suite with the Scenario Roleplays that Dreamers could enter. Then there came the One on One Roleplaying, which allowed Dreamers to advertise to other Roleplayers about their desire for more private roleplaying. Now the roleplay section is getting a complete and total overhaul. The list of changes is long, but well worth the read; Suite Wide Changes Previously the “Roleplay Suite” was just the Scenario Roleplay section; everything else was external to it. Not anymore. The Roleplay Suite is all the Roleplay Sections on EcchiDreams tied into one. There will be four sections of the Roleplay Suite; EcchiText Roleplays, Independent Roleplays, Scenario Roleplays and Custom Roleplays. Posted Guides for all roleplaying sections. EcchiText Rolelaying and You Independent Roleplaying and You Scenario Roleplaying and You Custom Roleplaying and You Defined DifficultiesA set of difficulties have been defined for the new Roleplay Suite. “Casual”, “Beginner”, “Advanced”, “Expert”, “Hardcore” and “Overkill”. Each EcchiText, Independent and Custom Roleplay must be tagged and set as prefixed (So it appears next to the title listing). Below is an example of what I am talking about - the ones that have red “X” next to them are examples of not how to do it. Old example taken from Guide (it was updated since this screenshot, but it gives you a rough idea). EcchiCredits for Roleplay Advert If you have an EcchiText, Independent or Custom RP* you can advertise your roleplay with the Community Roleplay Adverts. This will be available to all EcchiDreamers for 1,000 EcchiCredits**; however there are few restrictions. One Advert per Roleplay, if you have two roleplays you can advertise both of them, but one advert per roleplay. There’s no preference; for example Premium Dreamers won’t have their ad four times more likely to show, and active members won’t either. You have to come up with a 280x280 image, (I guess there could be an EcchiCredit market for people to make adverts for you if they so wish). The advert can only point to your Roleplay on EcchiDreams; if it’s hosted anywhere else - the ad will be rejected (Hey, you’re not paying real money for it). Adverts cannot break Terms of Service, or the Terms and Conditions of the Advert. We’re actually quite excited by this; and we look forward to seeing what our clever and awesome community can do with this new feature. * Custom Roleplay must be public. Invite and Private Custom Roleplays cannot be advertised. ** Price locked until January 2016. Feature’s Introductory Price - Only. EcchiText Roleplays One on One Roleplaying has been renamed to “EcchiText Roleplaying”. Independent Roleplays Now; this was our secret. The New Independent Roleplaying Forum are for those who wish to make their own roleplays without making it private. It comes complete with an OOC Discussion area, Side Story, Character ID and Extra Information subforums. This will allow you to create your own Roleplay, although there are stark differences between an Independant Roleplay and a Custom Roleplay. Scenario Roleplays Changes to the Scenario Roleplay Rules (These rules only apply to the Scenario Roleplays only) Removed Character Limit. Roleplayers are now allowed to make as many characters as they wish. Stricter rules on post length. Posts are now required to at least be a paragraph long. Tougher rules on those that do not respect Location thread restrictions. Side story inactivity closure time has been extended from one month, to six months. No single character will be removed for inactivity. As long as you are active with at least one of your characters, all characters will be considered active. The Roleplaying Guide has been moved to the Scenario Roleplaying section of the site, and has been re-written and renamed “Scenario Roleplaying and You”. This contains the rules, and Character IDs. Changes to the Scenario Roleplay Character ID. It now has several more fields, however they are optional. The Religion field has also been made optional. Opening posts of the Scenario main threads had been improved. Blackberry Falls Blackberry Falls is no longer a co-owned island between the UK and the USA. It is now its own country, with its own currency, the Blackberrian Dollar which is similar in value to the GBP. The Thorndown University Information Pamphlet has been re-written. It has also been changed to Thorndown University Brief Prospectus. Craethiel Kingdom There are no specific changes to the Craethiel Kingdom Roleplay Utopian Curse Utopian Curse will now be free and available for all Dreamers, not just Gold and Platinum Dreamers. Utopian Curse has a new Overview thread, containing information of the Roleplaying Environment including a new map. Andromeda Galaxy Andromeda Galaxy will now be free and available for all Dreamers, not just Gold and Platinum Dreamers. Andromeda Station has a new Information thread detailing about the Station, inhabitants and the environment. OOC - Out of Character Threads Re-written and changed the OOC (Out of Character) threads for the Scenario Roleplays. Each now reflect the Roleplay that they are tied in with. Renamed OOC Discussion (Blackberry Falls) to “Blackberry Café”. Renamed OOC Discussion (Craethiel Kingdom) to “The Creaky Tavern” Renamed OOC Discussion (Utopian Curse) to “Palm Beach” Renamed OOC Discussion (Andromeda Galaxy) to “The Red Velvet Club” Custom Roleplays If your Custom Roleplay has News, Events and special conditionals you can request an Article Section; based on “Community Articles” what categories and such you want will be created for you by a Community Administrator. These Articles will fit the same restrictions as your Custom Roleplay. Removed Features I suppose I should get around to this too… This is the list of currently confirmed dropped/removed features or dropped support. Arcade The list of reasons I’m dropping this is extensive, I have nothing against the developers and their works has been exceptional. Unfortunately they seem to cling on to a relic of the past and that is Shockwave Flash (SWF) instead of more modern HTML5 games, something I won’t support on our servers. Secondly their code is completely encrypted (Ioncube) which means I cannot edit it, I cannot manually fix any code which might be broken, I can’t verify that it’s secure-as-possible and I certainly can’t vouch for it in anyway shape or form, the server also requires me to have Ioncube Loader installed on it just for that one application. The last big reason is that it is not mobile friendly, or compatible, in most cases. Link Exchange Program As I said previously and this is my official statement on the matter: “Our Link Exchange program was done in good faith. For a time back in 2007/2008 - Kari’s Administration, 2009 - Illogically Logical’s Administration on EcchiDreams it was a good thing. It had good intentions and it was all free. However during NekoLust’s Administration (2010 - 2011) there were heavy problems in that some of them were becoming virus/malware infected sites, or they removed our link in violation to the agreements that we had. This meant that anyone approaching us for Link Exchange had to do so through his contract; one I honoured in Good Faith. However… As of 1st May 2015; all the websites that were tested for compliance - failed. Three of them contained malware and viruses which automatically downloaded onto people’s machines. This was wholly unacceptable to me and I pulled the plug on the whole thing immediately. There has been no interest since our last signup in 2011 (Before I was granted control over EcchiDreams). There has been no interest since. We'd rather not take that risk ever again, so we're not doing it anymore. Simple as that. I don’t see why I should have to spend the time that I don’t have, chasing these people up for compliance; and to be honest when something sweet is abused like it has been; it becomes very bitter. It was something that was with us since 2007, and on May 1st 2015 it died and became history.” Personalised Font Settings (Customised Fonts) This was the setting in the User Control Panel where you could go to, to set up your “default” font across EcchiDreams; as in when you make a post or reply it allowed you to do so without customising your font colour, text and size every single time you made a post as it did it all for you. Currently only one or two people use it. Therefore an update has not been developed for the Big Update, and it’s likely to be a canned feature all together. Support for Internet Explorer EcchiDreams should still work on Internet Explorer; but if you have problems with it and EcchiDreams well… If I can fix it not that the expense of other users then I will try. I’d advise a different yet more up-to-date browser, there are plenty out there. It does seem to work in IE11 though. So yay? Just because I am dropping official support for it - doesn't mean it won’t work and will never work. Chances are it’ll always work if you keep it relatively up-to-date. Support for Old Browsers If you can’t get on and can’t find the site at all - you’re using an old browser and the server refuses to communicate with it because (most likely) your SSL capabilities are outdated and pre-historic. I doubt it’d even display the page if we weren't on HTTPS because of all the new HTML5 content we use. Friend System See “Followers” (up at the top there) YouTube and MP3 in Profile As stated previously in the announcement you will no longer allow you to attach an MP3 to your profile; because of legal complications and we no longer have a dedicated block for YouTube Videos - instead you can put them into your About Me section, as we support YouTube (and various other video site) embedding. We also support Soundcloud Embedding which you can do in the About Me to. You can actually do this right now if you liked. Character ID Shop (Character ID for EcchiCredits) due to lack of interest. Rainbow Links Might be back in a future update; we’ll see if there is any demand for it and what it would look like implemented on there now. Although it does seem to work best on the Dark EcchiTheme, so it might be something for that, or site wide again. - We’ll see what the demand is like for it. In Closing This is just a brief overview of the new features and exciting times ahead for EcchiDreams and the Big Update. It’s been in the works for a long time and soon, when we wrote this in Google Drive it was just shy of twenty pages long, and we tried skimming it down a little and breaking it up to make it easier to read. There’s plenty to come and we would love to hear your thoughts and feedback on this. Of course if you have any questions; then don’t hesitate to ask!
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