As you'll probably be aware, this week marks a big step for GamesIndustry.biz as we move to a system of full registration - full details of the reasons behind that decision are available now.
At the same time, because the nature of the site is changing, we've also made a host of improvements to the way the site works, some more obvious than others.
The biggest change that affects everybody who uses the site - aside from registration - is a refreshing of the tabs along the top of the page. This was necessary because, rather than having a website and a Network (which, while linked, were for many people separate functions), now they're properly a single entity, so some rethinking of the best method of presenting these for everybody was required.
Another big change we've made is to introduce comments privileges for freelance and student network members. Until now the only people allowed to comment were full industry members - this is because those members are the only ones with identities that we can verify, thereby helping to eliminate unwanted anonymous posting.
However, after consultation with the student and freelance communities we felt that everybody stood to benefit from their greater involvement in the Network, so they too can now comment on news or feature stories. Any member may now view or post comments, and can also filter by network account type as well, depending on personal preference.
Tabs and Other Pages
The Jobs page is as important and vibrant as ever, and will become the only page on the site not requiring site registration to use, while Contacts, Events and Forum pull together many of the former Network tabs into three easy-to-manage areas.
Those members who joined prior to registration may well notice an orange box at the top of the page prompting you to fill in location information on your profile. This is so that we can better target the messages we occasionally send out, to try and make sure that you're only getting communications that are relevant to you. Once you've added in your country, that will disappear.
More to Come!
Finally, we've got some exciting improvements to the way that the Resources page works which are in development that should make it a more compelling place to go for key editorial topics as well as general data, while the new Education directory will continue to grow over time as more institutions come online, both in the UK and internationally.
While we've been really busy putting all of these improvements in place, we've also made some important changes to the administrative side, following some problems with account detail change requests and job history sections, so all of that should be much more straightforward for everybody moving forwards.
And talking of the future, once the initial registration period has passed, we'll press on with an ongoing programme of updates and additional features - all of which will remain free of charge - as we try to create an online community for the business of videogames that's evermore valuable and useful to its members.
As ever, feedback and suggestions are welcome.
The GamesIndustry.biz Team