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Big changes ahead for the giffgaff community

Started by: alex_w
On: 06/09/2018 | 16:06
Replies: 203
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by: alex_w
community giff-staffer

on: 06/09/2018 | 16:06

Hi everyone,

 

We have some news to share on something we’ve been working towards for over a year now, that I hope you’ll find as exciting as we do.

 

For those who have been around for a while, you’ll know that our community here has been built on the same software platform since launch. That platform has served us well over the years, offering a full range of functionality and features that allowed us to hit the ground running and for the community to establish itself as a key part of what makes giffgaff what it is today.

 

In the last few years, however, the way we use our community platform has changed significantly, and a few new community suppliers have emerged. In the middle of 2017 we kicked off a project to conduct some preliminary research on whether any of these alternative partners might be able to offer a better solution for the giffgaff community for the years ahead of us. In January of this year, that early research culminated in us deciding to launch a formal bidding process for our next community platform contract.

 

As the first stage of this process, in February this year we opened a discussion thread in our Community Platform Group board to give members an opportunity to answer this question: “What features and functionality do you want in your giffgaff community?”

 

The feedback we received was used to help us build a requirements document that went out to 5 suppliers. Since then we’ve been through a long process of assessing each supplier through multiple stages. That process has now concluded, and we have selected a new partner to take over when our current contract ends in early 2019.

 

Who have we selected? Well, it wasn’t easy. Community is done very differently in lots of different places, and a lot of different suppliers had very exciting things to offer for giffgaffers. After going over everything we know is important to you, though, we settled on a platform that we’re confident will provide what giffgaff members need from a community.

 

Our new partner will be Vanilla Forums. Vanilla, like giffgaff, is a young company that has grown rapidly, and they impressed us when demonstrating how flexible their platform is. They offer a range of features that excel in areas that we know are important to you as members, as well as to giffgaff as a whole.

 

Work will commence with Vanilla soon to begin migrating all of the existing content here over to their platform. We’ve already started work dissecting the existing community design, identifying known issues with the design so that we can brief the designers for our new community on both what we want, and what we don’t want.

 

Most importantly: we want to bring you along with us on this journey. At the earliest possible opportunity we will be inviting some members to join us on the first Vanilla hosted development community, to help provide feedback from the moment we start implementing giffgaff specific designs and features. As we progress through development, we’ll invite more members to join us and help shape the future of the giffgaff community.

 

When will we be making those invites? We’re currently expecting to do that in October, however initially it will be for a small group only. As we progress we’ll add more members to the testing group, as we’ll want some fresh eyes on what we’re working on as we go. If you’d like to part of the initial group, or one of the later groups, drop a reply here and let us know.

Community Platform Manager - Powered by coffee.
Message 1 of 204
by: shabazmoqsud
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:18

@alex_w wow this is great news 

Very excited to see what the new community platform will offer the members

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Message 2 of 204
by: pinkcalculator
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:19
Well if your looking for a non tech person who will generally manage to break something you’ve got the right person 😉
Vanilla is very nice in biscuits too 😛
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Message 3 of 204
by: k89bpa
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:24
Please, please, please, please keep the design SIMPLE & LIGHT.

Please, please, please, please also use the markdown editor plugin so I won't have the issues there that I have here.

Please, please, please, please also let us ignore other users.

Vanilla is a great choice. I've used them for stand-alone installations and their forums work superbly well, they're fast, easy and logical, everything that Lithium is not, so please don't go all "giffgaffy" and make it slow, cumbersome and awkward.

Huawei P20 Pro | 9.0.0 | Data Plan: 80GB

Message 4 of 204
by: as7861
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:26
Hi @alex_w

This is ace Smiley Happy Great choice for forum software.

I would love to take part in the trial of the new vanilla forum.

- Amer Get a free giffgaff Sim
Message 5 of 204
by: amandaduddy
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:28

This sound good cant wait for it all to happen x

Message 6 of 204
by: k89bpa
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:29
By the way if anyone wants to see how much better Vanilla is, (if it's not wrecked), have a look at the Digital Spy forums, they're powered by Vanilla. :-)

Huawei P20 Pro | 9.0.0 | Data Plan: 80GB

Message 7 of 204
by: bluemoonbaz
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:30 edited: 07/09/2018 | 11:14

@alex_w

Fantastic news and most welcomed,  I hope the functuality is an improvement for aspects of the community and iam happy to help in any role .

 

Message 8 of 204
by: shabazmoqsud
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:34

@k89bpa ive visited digital spy website and forum since big brother days i must say it is very good

 

 

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Message 9 of 204
by: discoandrew
on: 06/09/2018 | 16:44
Couldn't agree more @k89bpa. Definitely could do away with some of the bloat, eg. stickers. I didn't know that, digital spy forum is pretty slick and fast (I often use radio forum).

Hopefully this change will make community forum more user-friendly Smiley Happy

discoandrew is inviting you to join Giffgaff and take advantage of their great value SIM Only Deals.

Order a free Giffgaff SIM through My Referral Link (click or tap here) and you'll also receive £ 5.00 FREE WELCOME CREDIT within 24 hours of SIM card activation. Thank you.

Message 10 of 204