Adventures in Beta: ReadrBoard & New Ads on the Way

Sackbeta

Hello Dear Readers,

It’s time once again to update you on Latoya’s personal hell, also known as our seemingly endless Beta phase.

What’s New?

So you’ll see two new things popping up this week.

The first is already live. Notice a little box popping up, or seeing little pushpins on articles?

pins

That’s ReadrBoard, a creation by my friend Porter. He’s already made some cool tools that focused on online engagement, so when he asked for our help in testing this one, I said yes. ReaderBoard is designed to essentially be a better comments system – it allows you to pinpoint line by line your reaction to an article, and then share it across your social networks. It’s being demoed with other sites, like DailyCandy, but most are politically focused or consumer focused. Porter wondered if this kind of thing would work with our audience, so I agreed to give it a try out.

I’m interested in seeing how you all will engage with this tech – I’m not looking at a Disqus replacement, but there’s been some feedback over the years about articles being long, and this may help people who are a bit intimidated by our comments section to weigh in a bit more, and hopefully make it easier to share things you like. Also, I customized the stock phrases (Provocative/Problematic/Cosign/THIS!) to the things you all say most often. And, as always, you can drop longer ideas into the comments section. So let me know how you like it!

Also coming soon – our first ad network. No idea how this is gonna work, but we will see. I haven’t gotten any feedback from Care2 yet on if their little widget is doing anything, so we are going to try out an official network to see if it works. If not, we’ll see about creating something that will allow direct sale ads that won’t crash the site.

Setbacks.

The podcast still. Finally, there is content – I just ran out of time to put it together last week. Crossing our fingers for this week…

Also, our fabulous tech man Philip has said farewell to freelancing. We are alone on a hostile digital sea, with no webmaster!

Victory!

Porter is installing the freaking ad networks, so at least I can stop worrying about that and go back to writing stuff.

As always, stay tuned for more updates. I’m cooking up a digital engagement piece for the site that should be fun, and more stuff before the year is out.

  • Anonymous

    Are we allowed to use the ReadrBoard in the comments sections too? I used it to cosign something and it didn’t seem to stick.

  • DB14

    The box is extremely annoying!  It pops up all the time.  It is also making me crazy.  Thanks for your work though.

  • Anonymous

    Latoya,
    For me, the little box is popping up at the lower left hand corner of my screen and it pops up anew EVERY time I click on a new story on the site. I’m sorry to further contribute to the personal hell (and I’ve been there, too, so I don’t say that lightly) but honestly, it’s driving me nuts…

    • Anonymous

      No worries – that feedback is a passthru. I’ll tell Porter.