Hepatitis Social Community
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Avatar universal

Med Help - what gives?

I see that you now have the "Hepatitis Form" set up like this one. The other format was SO MUCH BETTER -- I cannot even tell you.  I realize you have advertisers and need space on the left of that, but there wer advertisers on the old format too.  So what you have on both forums is advertising to the left at the top, and blank space at the left down the page after the advertising.

Meanshile we have to scroll over to see who posted. Why?  Can't you reduce the space for the topic and move the posters' names over.

Then when we click on a topic, we have to scroll over again to read it.  It is inconvenient and seeminly, unnecessary.

Now - I can't log in in the Hepatitis Forum -- I can read, but not post.  I have been a member since May 05 and know my password.  Others have had to get a new forum name to post in here.  I did not, but now can't get in the old one with the forum name and ID I have had for almost 2 years.

Also, there is a link from this forum to the other, but I don't see any link from that forum to this.  If you want us to use this forum, you must let us link back and forth easily.

You could see more than 100 topics on the old forum set up and that was very helpful.  To only see 10-20 posts is very limiting and I think a lot of folks won't get many answers to the questions -- and they need answers.

Phil and Cindy, this forum for hepatitis C has been the best one available on the net and the convenience of use is one of the main draws.  Please help us keep it that way.


37 Responses
Avatar universal
Hmmm. I just posted about the no link thing on wyntre's thread.

  I can sign in to the other forum - but I changed my mind about posting.

I too liked the "old" format better - and wished that both boards could be that easy to use old format.

  There must be a reason that they cannot use it anymore - I don't know what it could be.

  I now believe that all the "fuss" about not posting community on medical WAS because this change was comming and they needed to reduce the # of posts on the "medical" to make it easier to find things...
Avatar universal
The best way to let Cindy and Phil know of your concerns is to click on the contact link.  I'm also sort of stymied about why you need 2 UNMODERATED Hepatitis forums here, even if one is supposedly for medical issues, and one for support.  Unless they are planning to get a moderator for the medically oriented one soon?  
172023 tn?1334675884
Jim, fantastic post.  

Just one comment on the "chit chattiness" issue. Its one that has absolutely PLAGUED all the womens forums for eons now.  Tons of off topic comments, idle gossip, rudeness, jokes, you name it. No amount of appealing directly to Cindy has resulted in any sort of separate COMMUNITY womens forums.  So why has it for the Hepatitis forum?

Methinks MH is splitting itself up too much.  A house divided cannot stand?  Was that the old saying?
Avatar universal
One point I forgot.

Currently, if you open a thread for the first time, it turns to a different color. This makes it easier to know which threads you have read and which you haven't.

However, if someone adds a post to a thread that you have already opened, the color does not change back to default like it does with other software packages. The advantage of the color changing back to default is that it tells us at a glance which threads contain posts we have not read. This is really as important as to which threads we have opened.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
All really well stated.

I didn't know that about not being able to post to old threads until just now....bummer.
Avatar universal
For example, if you go to page 10 (at least with my browser) and look at the post by "harry potter" titled "Night Sweats and Hep C". The post is dated 1/10, which is only three weeks ago -- yet it's closed to comments even though there have been only 13 replies to it. Previously, the thread would have remained opened to new posts until it was archived.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
If all the other issues get resolved I think it will be fine. Your idea of allowing members to decide where to post is going way overboard. Finally the Forum is manageable. I can actually stay abreast of what has been written and I can find threads from yesterday or the day before and maybe even last week. I know you liked MH the way it was except that then you wanted more moderation. Now, it seems you want none. Make up your mind Jim. Are you taking riba again just for the buzz? Really, in all seriousness, it is normal and probably healthy to think that our shot or our sides are really important enough to be on the main forum but they're usually not. Threads like "I had a bad day" or "I had a good day" or "my first shot tomorrow" or "Today's the day"  "my dog is forgetting how to beg - is he eating my riba?" are the types of threads that belong here regardless of where a poster might think they belong. Let's leave that place to articles, studies, research, expert opinions etc.
The rest of your ideas I agree with.
Avatar universal
Well I had a hard time fining my way back over here...
I guess with all the changes, the tech people over-looked putting the link back here over there !!! OOooPPppSSss!!!
Avatar universal
In giving this some thought (at least with the brain cells I have left) I have arrived at something that makes sense for me. The original board is intended for technical medical questions, studies, information regarding hcv. The key word being technical as in technical support. The community board is a general support mechanism for hcv. I think it would have been easier for the transistion if both formats had been the same. Search capabilities for technical aspects of the disease could be searched much more effeciently. Just some thoughts.
Avatar universal
nowhere ---I know I can comment directly to Cindy and Phil, but part of  my reason to start a thread was to see if others were having the same problems, and it appears that they are. Why do we need 2 forums? -- because we are special, that's why!

I personally have no problem with two forums as long as I can pop back and forth.  I also have no problem directing new posters to the other "half" of our forum for more medically related info.  To me  it is all one forum  - same people - we are just trying to adjust to what to post where.

Jim, you made a lot of good points in your post.  I personally like the unmoderated forum set up.

I do not like only having about 10-20 posts per page.
99052 tn?1270987120
if you are running windows at the top under view change your view text size to medium.later
Avatar universal
Thank God I am not on treatment right now because I'd probably have shot my monitor like Elvis did with TVs.  

I don't like this and I am not someone who doesn't like change.

Oh, well ... I suppose we will all have to deal with it and my whining will stop soon.
Avatar universal
First, want to thank MH for the time and trouble they have been taking to upgrade the software. No doubt, these efforts are aimed at making the discussion group run as efficiently as possible both for the users as well as MH.

Just a couple of thoughts...

Several months ago, a number of members complained of too much "chit chat" or what a few members in so many words termed "stupid" posts. My recollection is that a majority of the members here did not agree with these posters, feeling "chit chat" an integral part of the support process and no questions were "stupid"  -- but apparently either the "non chit chat" minority of posters were either more persuasive online or more persuasive in private correspondences with Med Help.

That said, I think the second forum is a nice addition, as it so far appears to afford a much more relaxed atmosphere to post. Very few if any harsh words, insults, and personal attacks on this side.

Maybe if Med Help relaxed the restrictions on what can be posted on the main board and once again allowed all types of support questions on the main board, and just leave this board for those who want either to post off topic, chit chat, or simply prefer the more informal, relaxed atmosphere here. That sort of fits with the "community" theme. In other words, let the member decide if a support question should be addressed to the main board or just the community board. An example might be "First shot tonight...no side effects". Well, this isn't strictly medical question so by what I understand this belongs in the community forum and not the main forum. But on the other hand, it provides HCV information (and opportunity for discussion) to members on the main forum who are about to start treatment, therefore an argument could be made for it to go on the main forum.

Regarding format, the main problem I see with the new format is that posts more than a day or two old are getting lost with the new page format. The new format also makes it much more difficult to search for a post using the "find" function (crtl F) on the computer. Now, in order to find a post by name or by poster, you would have to "crtl f" on each and every page until you found what you were looking for. I know some discussion group software packages allow the user to decide how many posts will be displayed on a page. That would be a good solution and personally I'd set it to show "All" threads so I'd be able both to scan posts as well as search easier.

More than that, it is now impossible to post replies to some posts that are as recent as two weeks old. Don't know whether this is a function of date of what page they reside on, but the old software allowed posting to older posts as long as they weren't archived.

Lastly, MH has been talking about a private message function that they are trying to add to the discussion group. I think this is a good idea for members that want it, but hopefully it will be an option that members can turn on and off as with other discussion groups. Even though the members and their emails are kept anymous, private messaging has its own host of problems and that's why it's a good idea to have this as optional as opposed to a software default.

-- Jim
179856 tn?1333550962
Personally I think it's a great idea to have the chit chat forum here and a forum for only medical questions/topics on the other side.

The problem is that people who come on to the "medical" board won't know this and we wil constantly have to have posts telling them what can be and can't be posted and then people get offended as if they did something wrong.

I think calling it the Medical Topic Forum (or WHATEVER who cares) and spelling it out that there is a Chit Chat Forum might help - but still old timers won't even look.

I don't think it matters really much - it's all "politics". The chit chat never bothered me and I DO THINK in a support group it has a CRUCIAL PART! AFter all that is what a SUPPORT GROUP is for - however...medical QUESTIONS/Posts are a separate thing.

God I'm rambling. I'm trying to say I think it's a great idea hving the two forums but...I wouldn't want to offend new posters if they screw up and put a "Shot Night One - Bad Sides" post on the med forum. They might need explainned what they can DO about the sides or something or just need to talk. Telling them they posted in the wrong place...............might scare them off.

And that is the last thing anybody here wants to do.

10947 tn?1281407852
As always, we are most grateful for your suggestions and comments!

To Friole - We can't seem to duplicate the blank space you see on your system.  We don't see the space to which you refer. If possible could you take a screen shot (ALT + Print Screen and then paste into Word or powerpoint) and email it to us, we'd really appreciate it!

To Compulsive: We have been planning the Hepatitis Forum split for a long time, due to comments we received from Hep visitors.  The forum split has nothing to do with our website redesign. We redesigned everything on the website - not just the Hep Forums.  

To Nowherechild, Jmjm530 and Peekawho:  The reason we have 2 unmoderated forums is because people who were looking for medical information & support had to scroll through many, many social postings before they found medical information.  Splitting the forums allows people searching for medical info to find it quicker and still allows people to socialize and share the Friday Nite Fight Songs!

To JmJm530: Thanks for all the great suggestions.  As I've mentioned, we want to make these forums easy for you to use and we'll need your continued suggestions.  Based on the comments we've received thus far, a large majority of our Hep visitors are very happy with the two forums - one medical and one social. Your suggestion that we find a way to show "all threads"  or allow visitors to select how many threads they view, is excellent and I'll pass that on to the "technical" staff.  Your suggestion that we allow messages to remain open for longer than 3 weeks is excellent, however, our system is set-up to archive questions that have remained "dormant" for "X" period (I'm not sure of the length of "x").  I'll see if we can extend the "X" for a little longer.

Again, we truly appreciate all the input as we look at this as a partnership between all of you and Med Help.  Keep those cards and letter comin'!

Cindy Thompson
Med Help

Avatar universal
i prefer the old 'school' colors.....much easier on the eyes and warmer,more welcoming.....but i do not welcome change ,generally. thank you for considering our imput..
Avatar universal
the delineation of comments posted from one subject to the next is confusing..maybe a line separating threads?..i find this format less precise regarding who posted what,where&when...spacing? this upgrade doesn't .............also,when i am returned to top,i have to scroll down to see 1st thread-why return above comments?
Avatar universal
I am dizzy.  Maybe if the Ads were on the RIGHT HAND side it would help - then at least I would not have to scroll to see the threads and posts.
Avatar universal
Thanks for the feedback. As others have noted, during the transition, I'm sure there will some natural confusion of what belongs where, especially in regard to the support issues that overlap the more technical issues.  For example, does the question "I'm having skin problems on treatment, what do I do?" belong in the main forum or the Community Forum? Or how about "Hemoglobin falling, I feel terrible"? Both are support issues but also relate to medical conditions that have technical aspects such as Procrit being a remedy for low hemoglobin. I *think* I know the answers, but frankly not 100 per cent sure.

Also, maybe in the interim period, you could gently move threads that don't belong in one forum to the other but leave "markers" in place to note that they have been moved and why. This would help a lot of us to understand more fully what goes where and at the same time threads would not get lost. Just a temporary thing if not much of a problem. Thanks for being open to suggestions as you previously stated.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
On one of my computers, the threads are separated by two contrasting shades of pink. This makes it very easy to differentiate on the main page where the posts of one thread end and the other begin. However, on my main computer, there are no contrasting pink backgrounds, the background is just white and as Beamish says, it's very difficult to distinguish where one thread starts and ends. I'm running Firefox version on both computers so at first glance it doesn't appear to be a browser issue. However, if I use Explorer on the computer with the all-white background, it then turns to contrasting shades of pink. Lastly, I tried to log out and then log back in to see if this would fix the problem. For some reason I was unable to log out. Hopefully some new software bugs that can be fixed.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
I should add that before the upgrade, I had the contrasting shades of pink on both computers, regardless of which browser I was using.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
Figured out the logout issue. You have to go to the main medhelp page to log out, can't log out within the Hepatitis Forums.  Maybe it was that way all along don't remember.
131817 tn?1209532911
I took a bunch of screen shots for you and can't find them on my computer! They used to appear in the main hard drive, but I want to show you that big white blank space to appear intermittenly on my new MacBook with Tiger and using firefox. Can you PLEASE put a link so we can go between forums, this is the biggest problem I am having besides scrolling down. I don't have a problem with the right, although I am a lefty..LOL. Thanks!

Avatar universal
In the meantime, why don't you just create two "tabs" using Firefox -- one for each forum. They will appear just under the address window of your browser and all you will have to do to switch between forums is click on one or the other. Won't even have to scroll up to get to the tabs. Just go to "bookmarks", then 'bookmark this page', then create in 'bookmarks toolbar'. That should do it.

Question -- on the page where you see all the different threads, do you have contrasting colors separating each thread or is the background all white? I have contrasting colors on one computer and all white on the other. The contrasting colors make it easy to read.

Be well,

-- Jim
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