At Ning, we’ve long believed in giving you and your members the flexibility to share and converse with one another in whatever means is optimal for your community – and today we’re launching a major upgrade to one of our most popular features: Chat.
We’ve rebuilt the new Chat from the ground-up, meaning we took a fine-toothed comb at how Chat should work with your 2012 expectations of web technology. The new Chat is made using HTML5, expanding the speed, options and customizations available to you through the feature. HTML5 also means that the new Chat is also now available on iPad and iPhone, Android-powered devices, and many of the newer mobile platforms available today.
Besides the updates we’ve made under the hood, we’ve also improved the readability as you use Chat. We’ve consolidated on white space, meaning you’ll see more of the conversation without the need to scroll through the past. Posts are grouped together, and appear under the same timestamp, name and avatar. After 1 minute of inactivity, we’ll add a new timestamp, so that you’ll know when the conversation left off and picked up again.
We’ve also added more controls and customizations with Chat. Its appearance will match the standard font used on your Ning Network, and Chat also adopts your network’s color scheme. Much in the same way you can use the Language Editor to make tweaks and customize the language across your Ning Network, you can do the same with the new Chat. Appearance customizations are now available for Chat with CSS. You now also have a universal and easy way to toggle Chat’s notification sounds on or off, and even a way to upload your own sound to be used to notify you and members of new Chat activity.
There are 4 new and improved displays for Chat: bar, module, full page and pop-out, giving you and your members the ability to easily show and hide chat messages according to individual preferences. With the updated new Chat bar, we also now support a new and improved pop-out chat, which will allow Chat to be ever-present even as you and your members navigate around your Ning Network and the web.
You no longer have to toggle between the network-wide chat and one-on-one chats. Now, when a one-on-one chat is started, a new private window will open up and you’ll be up and running in a private chat. You can pop-out the private chat or let it stay in the Chat bar.
As the Ning Creator, an admin or a chat moderator, you’ll see an “x” next to any chat post. You’ll be able to delete the post, and temporarily suspend the member from Chat. A member’s suspension from Chat can range from 15 minutes to 24 hours – it’s up to you. You and your members can also choose to ignore chat posts by specific members. This means that you won’t receive private messages and posts by anyone you’ve ignored, even in the Main Room.
Want to know more? Check out our new Ning Help Center articles that explain all the details about the new Chat:
- Introduction to Chat
- Get to Know the Chat Bar
- Control the Display Options for Your Chat Feature
- Moderate Chat on Your Ning Network
- View the Online Members in Chat
We’d like to thank all of the beta-testing Ning Creators who gave the new Chat a whirl and provided us with great feedback as we iterated this new feature. We’ll continue to take feedback from you and would love to know what you think. Feel free to comment below or on this Creators group. Happy chatting!
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