Coming Next Week to Your Social Network on Ning!

As we’ve mentioned, we’re working hard on a number of changes that will soon be coming to your social network on Ning. Here are a few things currently scheduled to be released on Thursday, February 5th:

Redesigned Latest Activity Feature

The prominent placement of your social network’s Latest Activity feature is one of the best ways to keep your social network engaging and dynamic. We’ve rearchitected the back-end and updated the design and detail of activity items to make this feature even more compelling. Here’s a screenshot (click on the image for a closeup):

activityfeed

Your new Latest Activity feature will utilize a brand-new set of icons, which we’re rolling out across your social network. Latest Activity feeds on profile pages, which previously had no icons or avatars, now have the same icon set shown on the Main page of your social network.

UPDATE: To ensure a smooth transition in updating your social network’s Latest Activity feed, we’ll be  rolling this change out over a period of days. We’ll keep Network Creators regularly updated about the status of this rollout.

Multiple Administrator Levels

Also with next week’s release, you will be able to create multiple levels of administrators to help manage your social network. You’ll be able to access this new feature by heading to the Manage page of your network and choosing Members. You’ll see an option to “Manage Roles.” You can create up to 20 new administrative roles for your members, mixing and matching as many permissions as you see fit:

roles

In addition to control over an entire feature, you can give a member the ability to administer a specific piece of content. This is great when you’ve got a big social network and a photo or a video is extremely popular. All you need to do is paste the URL of the content item when creating or editing the role.

Once you’ve created a role, you can now assign as many members to that role as you see fit on the Members page. With the help of these multiple administrator roles, it’s even easier to rely on members to help grow and run your social network on Ning.

New Settings Options

In this release, you’ll find an expanded set of privacy options on your Settings page. Using these settings, you’ll have more modular, precise control over which notifications you do and don’t receive.

Members will now also have the ability to decide whether to show their birthday, their birthday and age, or neither. Members who have left “Don’t display my age” checked in their settings will continue to have their age hidden, but they will now appear in your social network’s birthday feature.

Required Profile Photos

We’ve heard the request from a few of you to add the ability to require members to add a profile photo when joining your social network. While this may reduce the number of members who join your social network, you’ll have this option after next week’s release.

To set this up, go to your Manage page and choose Feature Controls. From there, choose the option to make the profile photo required.

Please drop us a note in the Ning Help Center if you have any questions about this release and we’re looking forward to your feedback!

About the Author:

Evan Goldin – who has written posts on Ning's Official Blog on Social Networking Sites.


  • Julian

    Evan

    Some great improvements there. I cant wait for the release. Thanks for all your hard work.

    Regards

    Julian

  • Zohra

    NOW THIS is what i call a GREAT improvement… Thanks you guys for this wonderful update!!!

    Zohra

  • Jimbo

    Hi Evan, will admins still be able to view our entire member email lsit? thx Jim

  • Brandon

    Awesome! Those admin features are just what i’ve been looking for!!!

  • Tumisang Tyamzashe

    Hi see my Christmas present from Ning has come early this year. You’ve halfed 40% of my wishlist :) thanks! I can’t wait for video channels and new chatroom to be released as well.

  • cst

    Brilliant!

  • Jim

    Love the administrator levels but I have to say I’m pretty disappointed with the Latest Activity upgrade. It is still lacking what I think would be the best feature of all (which I have suggested!). The feature takes up to much space if you want to show a decent amount of content. It needs to either have a scroll bar, to keep 20 items in a 6-8 item space OR have 6-8 items shown, with an older posts link (similar to facebook) that repopulates the list without reloading page.

    My members love to see what’s going on, so I try and keep as many items in the activity as possible, but the real estate it takes up is killing me. It forces the main page to be too cluttered as it doesn’t leave much room for the other features we have.

    Come on guys let’s get something like this together! If anyone agrees please ask for it, maybe they will listen if we gang up.

    Thanks – Jim

  • babukadja

    Me and my member can’t thank you enough. So much greetings from http://www.fotobaraza.ning.com

  • Les Squires

    Wonderful changes! Do any of the new roles give us the ability to grant multiple members joint editing of Forum pages? The you-can-only-edit-what-you-create rule cuts down on collaboration.

  • http://blog-o.ning.com/author/evan Evan Goldin

    Hi Les!

    Yup, that’s exactly what you’ll be able to do. You can assign as many members to any role that you create, including moderating the forum.

    Cheers!
    Evan

  • http://blog-o.ning.com/author/evan Evan Goldin

    Hi Caesarleo!

    That’s a good question. The color of the icons will match the color of links that you have chosen for your network.

    Cheers,
    Evan

  • Derek Cummings

    Some great features here. Ning just gets better. I am sure my members will all welcome the new features. Very much like the administrators levels. Keep up the good work guys…

  • caesarleo

    What about the Latest Activity Icons color? It has the same colour of entire networks or depending of current theme?

  • culinarius.es

    Great improvement especially the improved last activity feature.

  • Ismii

    Ok, this is cool. Will you guys have voice chat soon, or the ability to have additional pages where you can add forms, polls, etc?

  • http://blog-o.ning.com/author/evan Evan Goldin

    Hi Ismii!

    We don’t have plans to add voice chat any time soon, but we’ll definitely track that request, and hopefully it at some point down the road.

    If you’d like to add Pages to your network — with polls or anything else — try adding a page as shown in these instructions:

    Cheers,
    Evan

  • Predrag

    Administrative features are very usefully.
    What about Search for online members, and displaying online members as regular feature.
    Also multi language support. When can we expect that?

  • http://blog-o.ning.com/author/evan Evan Goldin

    HI Predrag!

    Happy to hear you’re exciting about multiple levels of administrators :)

    As for tracking who’s online on your network, you’ll be able to do that with the new version of Chat that we’ll be releasing later this month.

    And we’ve just slotted the ability for each member to chose their language for a release. We’re just getting started on this feature, so it’s a few months off. But it is now part of our three-month plan!

    Cheers,
    Evan

  • Skrillagorillas

    This is wonderful!!! Great jobs guys…now how long b4 we get a point and ranking system….that will make any site interaction boost times 100!!!!

  • http://blog-o.ning.com/author/evan Evan Goldin

    Hi Skrilla!

    We actually just added a Points and Rankings-type feature to our roadmap. However, this is a recent addition, so it’s just in the initial planning phase and will be a few months before it’s introduced.

    Thanks for your patience, and we’re excited to bring this feature to your social network!

    Cheers,
    Evan

  • Leif Hansen

    Wow, these are going to be AMAZING improvements –thank you Ning for keeping it coming. Now with Role Admins we’re getting close to what I know MANY of us are wanting –different membership levels, specifically paid memberships for premium content/etc. I can see a possibly workaround using roles, but its still going to be messy :)
    -Leif

  • Jhay Cool

    is there a way to hide the Resources for the moderators? because i don’t want them to be creating new network.

  • http://blog-o.ning.com/author/evan Evan Goldin

    Hi Jhay!

    That’s not planned at the moment. Administrators (those who appear in the administrator tab) and Network Creators will continue to be able to view the resources section of your Manage page. The difference is that some administrators you create custom roles for will not be able to view the Manage page, and you can decide which features of the Manage page they can have access to. However, anyone who views the Manage tab will be able to view the resources section.

    Cheers,
    Evan

  • Vicky aka VickStix

    Really LOVE the new features. Especially the birthday one. Been asking for that one for a while now, so was nice to see that included. :-)

    I would LOVE to see the Points and Rankings-type feature like S4N developed. That was my MOST FAVORITE add-on ever. I hope the one you are working on is very similar, and is rolled out SOON. I’m sure it will greatly improve user involvement at all the networks.

    Thanks for all the great work you guys are doing…

    Vicky aka VickStiX

  • CHILLPLACE

    Hey,
    Umm it have came to my attention that. The new icons doesn’t show on my network. So I was wondering wadzup with that??

  • Gina Bianchini

    Hey Chillplace – they are going to be rolled out across all social networks on Ning by tomorrow, February 25th. Look for it then and if it’s still not on your social network and you have never requested your source code or anything, drop us a line at the Ning Help Center (http://help.ning.com).