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Sad decline, forced registration Answered

I think it's pretty sad if you can suddenly not look at secondary pictures, or some pages of an instructable, without being logged in, if this pathetic behaviour continues I will have to un-register and stop visiting.

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rredmon (author)2011-03-03

I'd just like to say that it annoys me greatly when I've been a member of this site for some time, and all of a sudden it becomes an issue of having to pay for said membership. This isn't the first website that I've seen it happen to over the years, and I'm sure it won't be the last. I just feel that it negates the free for all vibe that this site used to be about. And the popup ads are annoying anywhere you go, but these that I've encountered on the site just tonight really pissed me off. Especially one that my anti-virus software said looked malicious. NOT COOL.

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caitlinsdad (author)rredmon2011-03-03

Freedom comes at a price.
And where have you been the last year and a half with these changes?

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rredmon (author)caitlinsdad2011-03-04

I get on this site on a daily if not weekly basis...only last night did the ads become overly aggressive. like just now when I was checking your comment, another page pops up over this one.

Freedom comes at a price is a bit of a contradiction of terms. This is a website, not a country or province ruled by a dictator. It seems that nobody understands what free means anymore...especially on the internet. If I have to give my credit card number out in order to get the free gift, then said "gift" is no longer free.

My main gripe is that I signed up to this site so that I could look at all steps on one page... and now I have to pay for that too. I'm sorry... I just don't care for the way the site has gone. I don't mind banner ads, and I don't mind having to sign in to view things. But, I draw the line at making it a paysite when the content therein is supposed to be shared.

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NachoMahma (author)rredmon2011-03-04

> Freedom comes at a price is a bit of a contradiction of terms.
.  Not at all. _Someone_ had to pay a price (quite often with their blood and/or Life), for us to be able to enjoy the freedoms that we do. How could a Texan not understand that - remember the Alamo!
 
> This is a website, not a country or province ruled by a dictator.
.  It most certainly is a dictatorship. Remember The Golden Rule: Them that has the gold makes the rules. If Robot is paying the bills, then Robot makes the rules and is The Absolute Dictator. If you want to make the rules, then you need to start paying the bills.
 
> It seems that nobody understands what free means anymore...especially on the internet.
.  What would lead you to believe that it ever was free? TANSTAAFL. Never has been; I don't expect there ever will be.

> I signed up to this site so that I could look at all steps on one page... and now I have to pay for that too.
.  Ain't Life a b***h? Why in the World should anyone (and especially you) have to pay for something that is of value to them?

> I'm sorry
.  I can't argue with that one.

> I draw the line
.  ROFLMAO. OK. You drew your line. Now what are you going to do?

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caitlinsdad (author)rredmon2011-03-04

There was never such thing as a free lunch and you should not expect so. Yeah, as the regular non-paid instructables member, even paid, you get the ever more intrusive advertising, and every once in a while it does seem to overtake your machine. It's the sign of the times and the site must run adverts to survive.

All the content is shared for "free". You just have to pay for the convenience of accessing it without distraction.

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NachoMahma (author)caitlinsdad2011-03-03

. hmm hmm hm nothin' left to lose hmm hm

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kelseymh (author)rredmon2011-03-03

You don't have to pay for anything. As we have pointed out to oh so many lurkers, all of the content is still completely free, and is all available in the same for it has always been.

If you want value-added features (like reduced advertising, or formattable PDFs), then you do need to pay (and should expect to pay) for that added value. The paid memberships were instituted to offset reduced advertising revenue.

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ganglion (author)2011-01-27

The one that's starting to put me off is the big increase in the amount of advertising on the site. The autoplay videos on the solar section are pretty bad, but I think adding advertising videos at the top of featured instructables where the content isn't even relevant to what the article is about is just greedy and against the ethos of what I thought this site was about.

Also the sponsored DIY quiz looked pretty naff.

My guess is the company who run the site has just been taken over by a bigger one who want to milk it, but I may be wrong.

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steveastrouk (author)ganglion2011-02-07

No, the guys that run the site have to eat. To pay for that, they have to accept adverts and charge membership. They may need to accept more ads, to offset the considerable costs of running the site.

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ganglion (author)steveastrouk2011-02-07

I know they have to eat, and adverts is one way of doing that, but the way they have done it is so in your face that it's started to annoy me. E.g. the large autoplay videos at the top of the eco section (which seem to have gone now) were just bad web design manners.

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i_promise (author)2011-01-03

When I am looking at an ible, and it stops me to sign in, it breaks my couriosity and I ask " am I really interested in this " and promptly close the window.
I would stay if guest view only requires viewing an ad to continue (ONCE-per-article!!), but then I hate cookies.

I'd rather click than type, because I am usually here looking when I am in lazy mode, or following a link from hack-a-day (a hassel free site!!).

Nobody's replied to this since early 2009, I imagine it does matter to alot of people, but they can't be bothered to sign it to comment, and just simply: "alt-F4 to continue..."

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Whatnot (author)i_promise2011-01-04

It's become clear that the guys running instructables are dead set on their annoying measures, and I see many many complaints whenever somebody links to instructables now, it's become a thing that people profusely hate and all for no real reason but the, let's say 'quaint', view of the management on how to run things.
Anyway people know they won't listen and that's why they don't bother trying to argue on instructables itself.
I wonder what the growth numbers are since they went that route though.

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Kiteman (author)Whatnot2011-01-04

"I see many many complaints whenever somebody links to instructables now"

Really? Where?


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Jayefuu (author)Kiteman2011-01-08

A lot of popular blogs, there is often *itching in the comments about the blogs posting links to Instructables. Hackaday comments are often quite anti-Instructables.

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Kiteman (author)Jayefuu2011-01-08

I can't imagine why - I've just had a quick scan, and we seem to supply a significant proportion of their content.

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Whatnot (author)Kiteman2011-01-13

I think you mean people who submit articles at no cost to instructables supply content.
And if about 20% is so significant I leave to personal judgment.
But that site is not alone, other sites also show commenters complaining - and yes often overdoing it a bit, but it's still a indicator people are dissatisfied, in fact the overdoing is shows how much the feel a need to vent.

As for the argument 'we gotta live' I think that makes little sense if you adopt a policy that repels people.
Before instructables started the nonsense it was popular and growing steadily, there was no need to push it like the current situation, and plenty of sites grew to multi million or even billion dollars outfits without annoying users, what if google would say "You already did a search today, log in to do more than one"? They'd be a thing of the past in no time I would think.
And value-added things you can ask people to log in for, sure, like the pdf function, but to annoy them for secondary pictures and pip ups is just daft, the internet showed that soft-selling works and works like a dream, so why one would ignore that lesson is beyond me, I guess some people just have personality types that stops them from adopting certain attitudes regardless of in-your-face realities.

Anyway thanks for replying and doing so in a 'normal' way people :)
And although I do bring up some negative things I still think there's no site like instructables (AFAIK) and it's a interesting site, but yeah that makes annoying aspects even more annoying.
Oh and if I run something I also aren't quite the success I'd hope to be, I also make stupid decisions in these situations, can't deny it.

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Kiteman (author)Whatnot2011-01-13

"Before instructables started the nonsense it was popular and growing steadily"
(It still is)

there was no need to push it like the current situation
There was - advertising revenues came nowhere near covering the site's running costs.

and plenty of sites grew to multi million or even billion dollars outfits without annoying users
"Plenty"? Name ten without googling.

what if google would say "You already did a search today, log in to do more than one"? They'd be a thing of the past in no time I would think.
The scale is several orders of magnitude different, and the context is different is well - Every search earns the site a penny or two, and there are billions of searches a day.

And value-added things you can ask people to log in for, sure, like the pdf function, but to annoy them for secondary pictures and pip ups is just daft
Secondary pictures are still available for non-pro members. The majority of the annoying pop-ups have been the fault of your beloved Google.

the internet showed that soft-selling works and works like a dream, so why one would ignore that lesson is beyond me, I guess some people just have personality types that stops them from adopting certain attitudes regardless of in-your-face realities.
Which billion-dollar website has only adopted the soft sell? Not google. Not facebook. Not Amazon. Not YouTube...

----------------------------------------------

Instructables cannot grow as fast as any of the other "big" sites, since the content takes so much more time and effort to produce - many of Joe Public simply cannot be bothered to do more than send a text to update their profile.

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Kiteman (author)Kiteman2011-01-13

(Oh, and when i scanned Hackaday, I didn't see any posts that were actually anti-Instructables.)

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JaredsProjects (author)Kiteman2011-01-15

With how great this site is, I don't see how anyone can be "anti-instructables".  Sure there are more ads if you aren't a member, but you can become a member in less than 5 minutes.  Then if you really like the site you can go a step further and get a pro membership, which I must say it awesome.  No ads at all is great.  I got my first pro membership from being featured, and I am certainly going to pay for the renewal when it expires.  Instructables is such a great source of information that I am extremely glad that I found it.  80% of the time I spend on the internet is on instrutables. 

Keep up the go work Instructables!

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steveastrouk (author)Whatnot2011-01-05

Yes, well everyone has to eat.

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Biggsy (author)Whatnot2011-01-04

I joined Instructables because I found that I was using the site alot, and like yourself wanted to see more pictures and such... But because i came to the site often it justified joining in as a member, I enjoyed then being able to use the forums, and it inspired me to make my own I'bles and contribute to the community.

What would be the point to having a community if you could just view everything without registering? It's quite a blinkered view to think that un-registered website viewers have the same rights as a member. I also don't see why I'ble staff should change the system for someone who can't be bothered (QUOTE: "I'd rather click than type, because I am usually here looking when I am in lazy mode") to log in (and click the stay logged in button) to view what they wanted to see.

As someone who posts I'bles I like it when people take the time to say you know what, that was great thanks, and I'll have a go myself. Being a member also gives someone the ability to give constructive criticism or feedback.

If your just going to moan about having to be a member I'm sure Staff can rectify that situation for you. At least be constructive, your argument is flawed by your own admission of laziness, and is confounded by your irrational problems with cookies.


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MichelMoermans (author)i_promise2011-01-08

If it wasn't for the members of this site hackaday wouldn't have all that many entries as it has now.

And furthermore, can you really be that lazy to not even want to take the time to complete a 10 minute free sign up? They don't even bother you with special pasword requirements or anything like that...

Seriously this is a DIY site, if you can't bother signing up there is little chance you are really going to do anything with the information we supply you with for free here. I accentuated the "free" part because many people who tell you how to build portable gaming device's, hot tubs costume projects and so much more ask money for the plans or steps. We offer it free just to help each other and put the knowledge we gained out there and all we ask in return is a nice comment or good rating. And the people who have made it there jobs to keep this place running just ask that you complete a 10 min free signup so they can get some more money from ads and sponsors...

And you dare to complain about this... just simply click alt-f4 every time a link redirects you to this site and save us the trouble to comment on this...

I'm sorry if this breaks the be nice policy but people like this make me so angry! no gratitude whatsoever....

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To be fair - this site wouldn't have as much traffic if it wasn't for sites like hackaday and other places that offer a central deposit of good stuff on the web.

I don't think its fair to complain about someone complaining about this site - the OP is a new(well was, this is a year old now) user and is being put off by a feature of this site, a reasonable complaint if you ask me.

I hate having to log in to view the extra pictures - it's really annoying.

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JoeBlowe (author)2011-02-04

I used to enjoy this site beyond my wildest dreams. Since I am ADD/ADHD, the many projects help keep me focused. However, between the forced signup/login, and the absolutely obnoxious ads, it is looking like the end for your once esteemed site. I cannot focus on this site when I have all this other junk popping up and playing in the background.

Please feel free to email my address from your signup list when you decide to fix this. Unfortunately I do not know if I can continue using the site in the current disarray and flooded input.

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scraptopower (author)2011-01-10

I agree with the original poster here. When I visit here I'm not usually logged in. If I see something that catches my eye, I'll click on it. But when I want to look at the other pictures and it brings up that login popup, I'll just go arggghhhh, close the window and go somewhere else. It has to be really good for me to bother logging in.

It's nothing to do with laziness - having to log in just to view a picture is plain annoying and breaks the line of interest!

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Why not have your browser keep you logged in?

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Before I was a member, Instructables allowed non-members to view secondary images. I guess I'bles grew too big to accommodate everyone for free. I'm not really all that annoyed or anything at I'bles since I'm really the only one in the household that's searching I'bles and whatnot.

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jessyratfink (author)2009-03-07

I'm not quite sure what the problem is here. It's super easy to sign up. They don't ask much of you. If it's helping instructables I have no problem with it. :D

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lemonie (author)jessyratfink2009-03-07

You are in here a lot (like me). For infrequent viewers it's an annoyance, which can be enough to put a person off bothering. L

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Goodhart (author)lemonie2009-04-06

Annoyance though? I don't really go many places where I don't have to sign in and some of them require a "solid and secure password (letters, numbers, and a symbol or capital). Here, this is one of the more easy ones :-)

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lemonie (author)Goodhart2009-04-06

For the volume of casual traffic, I should think that a lot of people are annoyed rather than simply inconvenienced? L

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Goodhart (author)lemonie2009-04-07

Oh yes indeed. Looking at it from that perspective; anyone could be annoyed at about anything they chose to be I suppose.

I get more annoyed at my work computer acting more like a not so speedy 286 then the Pentium V it is ;-)

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jessyratfink (author)lemonie2009-03-07

Yeah, I understand that. It's happened with a ton of sites for me, but I'd say that was more of a "the reward I get doesn't equal the work I have to do to get it" kind of thing.

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Whatnot (author)jessyratfink2009-03-07

I was already signed up, but I don't keep cookies and don't want to be signed into sites 365/24/7. And of course there's nothing wrong with signing up, but I think the system that you need to sign up to download stuff like the PDF and to leave comments was enough, that they also added that to 'view all' in one page needed you to sign in was pushing it a bit already , and now they are adding even more such silly unpleasant discouragement to visitors, it won't win any (new) fans, I think it's a bad idea and shows a poor spirit..

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jessyratfink (author)Whatnot2009-03-07

These seem like small complaints, then, if you were already signed up. Logging in is very easy! Thousands of people visit this site everyday and they click page by page through various 'ibles with no complaints and many sign up! I feel that if someone is so interested that they just need to see the full size picture for a random step on a random 'ible they probably won't have any problem completing a minute long sign-up process. :) As Goodhart said, I think many of the people in this site's audience will sign up and stick around if they're really interested in making. I don't see how creating a username and password and giving an email can be such an arduous task.

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iMake (author)jessyratfink2009-03-19

We all have different ways of using the site. And these changes effect everyone differently. I have an account but i rarely sign in. My password is extremely long (being a programmer makes security an bigger part of my life) Im on a public computer more often then not, so i dont like to log into anything unless im at home. Logging in could compromise my account. So banking, email, facebook, paypay and ebay are out of the question. Now i can only work on a project from home, oh well.

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PKM (author)iMake2009-03-25

being a programmer makes security an bigger part of my life

I'm a programmer, too- my password is nine characters long, or about two seconds to type. Why don't you work out 39Permute9 (or nPr(36, 9) if you want to be postfix about it)and tell me how many thousand years it would take to guess that at 0.1 seconds per attempt? If you are worried someone will actively snoop your password out of your network traffic or something like that, then there is probably an Instructable on tin foil hat building that will be of interest. Sorry, I don't buy that as an excuse not to log into the site.

Logging in could compromise my account. So banking, email, facebook, paypay and ebay are out of the question.'

I'm not sure I get what you mean- logging into Instructables could compromise your banking and paypal accounts? Clearly as a security-conscious programmer you wouldn't dream of using the same password for all of those so I don't see how logging into Instructables would jeopardise your banking security either. As long as you don't write yourself private messages with "my credit card number is 1683-7861-6987-8473" in them I don't see how they could be linked, given that we're talking about free membership here where the site don't take any payment details from you.

If you just mean you don't log into anything on public computers in case people steal your details, are you that worried that someone will hack about with a net cafe computer just to get access to your rantings about how having to log into the site is such a terrible requirement? I'm still a little nonplussed.

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fwjs28 (author)Whatnot2009-03-07

opera has wand, if you type say w, it automatically fills in whatnot..its super easy to setup wand to! it can do phone # email all stuff

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Goodhart (author)Whatnot2009-03-07

poor spirit, good spirit, neither pays the bills. I don't keep cookies either, and I definitely do not from work, when I sign in, and that computer can take up to 3 minutes to go from page to page, but I spend most of my time here, because I enjoy those that are here already, and the projects, and the occasional times I can help someone else out. If the simple act of signing up and signing in keeps a person away, they probably are not much of a "maker" in the first place.

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jarv34 (author)2009-04-06

I would also like to give feedback that i no longer visit this site (despite having an account) because of its login requirements. I do not feel like giving links to people that require a login. You may want to evaluate whether this policy is actually increasing traffic like it was proposed above. If nothing else it is a huge turn-off for your more web-savy users.

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lemonie (author)jarv342009-04-06

But you did visit the site today, and log-in. Why bother if you're giving up? (Voting with feet...)

L

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11010010110 (author)jarv342009-04-06

actually increasing traffic

traffic of what kind of users is increased ? can we expect them to be as contributing as the ones who leave ?

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saintstoffel (author)2009-03-10

Haha, I just signed up to post this. I read instructables all of the time yet I never contribute. I don't have anything actually worthwhile to contribute. I do however link to instructables frequently. If someone new comes here wanting to see something they've been linked to and some stupid farking username password box pops up, they're not going to sign up. They're going to give up on looking at the instructable. Get rid of the mandatory sign-up and I'll start contributing.

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NachoMahma (author)saintstoffel2009-03-10

> some stupid farking username ... Get rid of the mandatory sign-up and I'll start contributing. . Get rid of the attitude and I'll start listening. Robot is trying to solve a very difficult problem in a manner that will affect the fewest ppl possible. Instead of being such a jerk, why not suggest some alternatives?

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iMake (author)NachoMahma2009-03-19

Wow...
OK Nacho, whats this "very difficult problem" they are trying to solve, im sorry i must have missed it. The only thing i saw was a post by eric talking about how the large size images take up too much bandwidth.
Ok so lets start with YUI's image loader that only loads images once the user needs to see them.

So maybe the images that they display to the public could just be proxys.
Now creating a proxy of an image is dirt simple, And they obviously use proxys for the thumb sized images. So whats the issue then? the storage of the proxy?
Well a 800x600 proxy image is around 14k so with a drive bought off tiger direct for 120$ they could store ~76,695,844 proxy images.

Well how about cleaning up there code? theres alot of extra lines of code in there files. This adds up as well since crawlers/spiders(NachoMama these are things search engines use to find links) will download these pages and parse through them.
Javascript can be all written on one line, white space means nothing, so they could clean up files like this one.
https://www.instructables.com/static/js/jsload.js

Wiki is the best and example of a community working together, this site is a poor example. If we giving up our rights soon we wont have any.

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Lithium Rain (author)iMake2009-03-21

Oh, yeah? What extra code? Examples, please.

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iMake (author)Lithium Rain2009-03-29

OK.
Press ctrl-u
Notice the white space being spit out. This could be removed.

Obfuscated code is lighter then non obfuscated code. That's a free fact for ya, put it in your pocket.

Here's a example from digg.
http://digg.com/programming/Google_wasting_200_gigs_of_bandwidth_a_day_

This is not a uncommon issue, and its can be resolved in many ways. Personally i dont like the way they are trying to fix the solution. It could be worse, but it could be better.

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Lithium Rain (author)iMake2009-03-29

So how would you do it? I'm sure the staff would be happy to listen to any suggestions you might have. This code is likely easier to maintain, because you don't have to solve a brain teaser every time to fix bugs and such, especially if you're new to the project, and ibles is in a bit of a state of flux right now. Perhaps that's why they've done it that way. Aw, gee, thanks. I didn't know that. Let me just jot that down. Might put that valuable information in a bank vault. Wouldn't wanna lose that little handy tip. Why not? How could it be better?

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