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      05.09.2004 15:15
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      The Duke started this one off by saying: Not really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. Paste this little bit at the end of your 'letter': "This has been sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site." All entries must be entitled: "Dooyoo membe
      rs' feedback initiative: ". The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/ Dear Dooyoo, I am in a bad mood. I am sorry but I am. it may have something to do with the fact that my latest beau was a grumpy pig last night or it may be something to do with the fact that your website is going to the dogs. I have actually been a member on and off for some four years now and yes I did defect to the other side for some time ie Ciao but y'know what the only reason I am here is because you will let me write. I am certainly not here for the pages that take ages to load. I don't have the quickest of connections to the old www. but should it really take me twelve hours to read three days worth of opinions? I may sound like a freak here but I actually want to read all the new opinions I can and quite frankly I have not been so put off since I experienced my ex boyfriend's idea of foreplay. If you look at my profile dear dooyoo, you will see that I am actually trying to utilse this site as a way of raising money in honour of my deceased godson, I shan't go into details here, but again I am finding this as much use as a chocolate teapot. You see there is actually very few members who read. I wonder why this could be ? Is it because the site is being flooded by churners who really don't give a rat's bottom about the quality of stuff they are writing? Do you know what I don't really know who to have a go at about this one I mean if you don't have the category for them and they just shove it any old how it really isn't their fault .... Again I am reminded of my ex's foreplay and I don't really want you to become an ex Dooyoo. And while I am on the subject of new members can I just say I don't think you support them enough? And that I am sick of leaving comments that make me sound like a pious , school teach
      er with an anal retention problem ... because to be honest it is YOU who should be pointing new members in the right direction! What about an award for most notable newbie? Could your pockets stretch to that ? And while I am at it and you have my blood up and I have your attention.... Why can't you have up to date categories? Why can't you have reviews for actual films that are in the cinema now? That would be VH.... we may be able to make an informed consumer decision then or don't you want that ?Oh dear I am starting to think that I am just going to be left with unanswered questions, I haven't had so many questions since Twin Peaks so I must (a) care about the site or (b) still be drunk from last night. The categories you do have a poop. I am sorry but I actually call this site ''Poopoo'' at the moment... I mean the pictures you have are cack. I do actually have a large vocabulary Dooyoo but let's cut to the chase here why in the name of arse is there a picture of a can of soup in totally unrelated products? I am starting to think that you have done a secret deal with Heinz. And don't get me started on the fact that the capital letters are willy nilly. Why should a member as lovely as he is sort that out for you? It really seems like you don't give a fig about the site. I will not use CC's capital letter fix it. It is my god given right to have capital letters, You have lost a lot of very good writers over this small thing Dooyoo but it seems that all you care about is quantity not quality. I know at the end of the day this Dooyoo stuff is a business but you are to business what Kate Moss is to weight watchers. WE matter. WE the writers are the people who keep this site going and YOU should care a little bit more, Hell you should care a lot more. I have been spending a lot of time on this site of late , to try and make a difference for Thomas and I have actuall
      y found my self wanting to be a member of this community... but if this was a real flesh and blood community we would all be living in a hovel because this site is a hovel compared to how it could be. I suggest that you take all the points raised in this initiative into consideration and stop relying on the same old names and the same old faces and actually realise that if you don't do something people will just stop dooyooing or the opinions will become more and more cack until the consumer aspect is totally gone.... But I am starting to think you don't care about that anyhow. Jo Glory_FishesII This has been sent as part of the dooyoo members' feedback initiative. the content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the dooyoo and the site."

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        22.08.2004 17:12
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        A chance to share thoughts with dooyoo direct.

        TheDuke says:

        This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works:

        You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise? It's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site.

        Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are.


        Dear Dooyoo,

        I'm writing this open letter to you in support of TheDuke's feedback initiative although I've already recently sent you a similar letter in the form of an opinion in my Feedback & Suggestions review.

        Initially I wasn't going to take part in this initiative as I didn't want to end up repeating everything I've said before, but I've since had a change of heart, feeling that it is important to contribute to a) support the initiative and b) try to include points from a different angle than I've done before.

        What is slightly disappointing is that I have read a number of these feedback initiative reviews and they have mostly come from dooyoo's established members, and in the main those members that have been here either from the very beginning or pre-Aurora; the 'usual suspects' if you will.

        Hoping that there are many other members who want to see dooyoo thrive again and get more involved in the community then it would be just as good to hear, by both the established members and you, dooyoo, what these other members have to contribute towards this initiative. In particular it would be interesting to have contributions from dooyoo members who used to be here and have started to come back or pop back occasionally, dooyoo members who joined post-Aurora and dooyoo members who have recently joined, because their thoughts are just as relevant and important as the 'usual suspects'. Then, I suppose, there will be a good cross-section of contributions from dooyoo members from the start of dooyoo to the present.

        I don't want to harp on about all the problems with the site as many of us members are well aware of them and they have been included in many reviews (and comments) and likewise I'm sure you, dooyoo, are more than aware of what is wrong. What is frustrating from a member's point of view is knowing that you are aware of the problems yet you have done nothing about them, seemingly, and in some ways what is slightly worse is that there has been a kind of stony silence from you and a failure to acknowledge those problems that are plainly obvious for all to see and experience.

        However, fair play to you as now you have included 4 useful links on the community page for dooyoo related forums, the capital letters fix so generously shared by Charlie Chuckle and the google search link to help members search better for things on dooyoo. It is a bit of a shame though that it took something like this initiative to get that achieved, but again it does show you are listening, finally. Now though, you have to keep the momentum going and keep the initiative.

        The thing is attraction has never been a problem for you. Ordinary people continually join dooyoo, the trick is keeping them here. Making the site function better would go part of the way to doing that but, for me, I think another part is communication.

        Do you remember the days when dooyoo was near 'interactive'? Remember the days of the dooyoo office web cam? Remember when there was much more interaction and feedback between dooyoo staff and us members?

        It brought you and us closer. We felt more of a part of dooyoo and you were getting instant and valuable feedback from your members. That for me helped me and kept me here and it is testament to that kind of closeness that has not just kept me interested but many other members too who also were around and remember those earlier times.

        Since Aurora that has all changed and many members have either drifted away or those who have joined since, who never experienced that kind of contact with you, have had nothing to keep them here.

        Now I know many of those members from the early days might only have been here because of the generous financial rewards but you must take heart that since those rewards have shrunk quite substantially there is still a good number of members who are still here and I, personally, attribute that to a kind of sense of belonging here.

        Nowadays though there isn't really much to keep new members here, is there? That could change though if you were more pro-active and more involved with your members. The community area of dooyoo could be a great vehicle to communicate with your members with things like a Q&A forum where a selection of members queries and the like could be addressed and answered by dooyoo staff. Rather than the somewhat impersonal dooyoo magazine then why not, again through the community area, encourage a more direct and personal approach to member participation there?

        Further, knowing what a keen lot us members are and probably knowing more than you how the site is or isn't working then when these problems are pointed out then be honest about them on the community page and share some of your ideas with us and any future plans. I only say this as I'm sure the more involved the members feel in the direction and future of dooyoo, and the feeling that their contribution of ideas and suggestions are being listened to then the more inclined they might feel to stay and that really has got to benefit both parties hasn't it? Or else I feel dooyoo will just get staler and staler and fall way behind your main competitor, Ciao! Not because they are better necessarily but because dooyoo members will become so frustrated and feel like there is nothing to keep them here or encourage them to get involved in the community.

        As David Brent says in The Office "Nothing ever changes by staying the same". This applies to dooyoo. I realise there are financial and technical restrictions that might not help change come so easily, especially with the albatross that is Aurora but by adding a more human and personal touch then change can be achieved that way and help the community flourish as it did for us members, us 'usual suspects', who experienced that human and personal approach before which has kept us here ever since.

        Finally, let's hear from some more members, not just the 'usual suspects' but from those members like I mentioned earlier. It doesn't matter how long you have or haven't been a member, your input is just as valuable and just as relevant and it doesn't really matter if it's been said before. What is important about this initiative is that you get to say how you feel, what your thoughts are, good, bad or constructive.

        The more people that participate then dooyoo will have more of an idea of how, hopefully, to go forward and help this site flourish again.



        The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site.


        Capital letters courtesy of: http://www.chuckleweb.co.uk/fixit.php

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          10.08.2004 23:54
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          The Duke says ~ This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise - it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ 10th August 2004 Dear Dooyoo, I've only been a member here for nine months now. I wasn't around in the pre-Aurora days of Dooyoo's glory when it was (so I'm told) by far the best consumer review site in the UK. But I've been encouraged to write you a letter giving my impressions of your site an
          yway. Perhaps I can be more impartial because I didn't know about it when it worked well and was considerably busier than it is now. My reasons for joining weren't very inspiring, I'm afraid. I had joined Ciao three months previously, and despite hearing about Dooyoo on the late Chatterweb forum, I didn't think I could possibly find time for another similar site. However one weekend Ciao was unavailable due to a crash, so I thought I would investigate the competition. My first impressions were pretty good. At the time the Ciao site featured a rather garish orange colour, and I preferred Dooyoo's green scheme; much easier on the eye. I read through the various tour pages, and was pleasantly surprised at the payment rate. 3p per read on everything was a great deal better than Ciao's 1p per read on certain selected products. Then shortly after I joined, Dooyoo started offering 6p per read until Christmas 2003; that was an excellent offer, and certainly encouraged me - and others - to get posting. I have no complaints about the speed of payment either, or the various options. Well, a minor quibble that you have to deduct a £2.50 fee for every voucher; since Amazon don't charge for gift vouchers I don't really understand why you do. But as your payments are generous I'm not too worried. The first voucher I claimed arrived within a week; the second took longer, but when I emailed your info address I had a friendly reply, and Clare sorted it out for me. I was impressed. Thank you. I like the crown system too. It's considerably fairer than Ciao's premium fund, and more open. I received some early on, much to my surprise; clearly new members are just as likely to be given crowns as more established folk. I particularly li
          ke the way that we can nominate other members' reviews for crowns without anybody knowing, so there's no worry about people wanting 'reciprocal' nominations or asking why we have or haven't nominated a certain review. I like the general low-key friendliness of Dooyoo too - it's less lively than Ciao, with fewer active members and no guestbook system, but I've found everybody to be welcoming and accepting. Without the dreaded 'community points' there's less competition, and although inevitably there are some newcomers who post quantities of short reviews within the space of an hour or two, this doesn't happen nearly so much as it does on Ciao. Of course this may be a disadvantage: there aren't so many new members, and a site needs new members to keep going. But there's still a steady trickle, and many of them stick around. So... Why is it, I wonder, that I log onto Ciao nearly every day, and read lots of other opinions there, whereas I keep forgetting about Dooyoo? When I'm here, I quite like it, but somehow it feels like so much more effort. Firstly I think this is due to the slow page-loading, and the awful popups. It was after joining Dooyoo that I downloaded the Google tool-bar, which allows popups to be blocked; without it, I wouldn't have lasted more than a few days here. I do understand that you need advertisements in order to generate income, and I have no problem with banner ads, or relevant links to stores where products can be bought. But popups - well, they're so irritating. I find it hard to believe that anybody ever clicks on them. Even if I wanted to buy the product advertised, the fact that it came in a popup would immediately bias me against it. Thanks to the Google bar I don't see popups - most of th
          em, anyway. But every time one is being blocked, my mouse pointer changes and the site pauses for a second or two. It happens when I log in, and periodically when I'm reading or rating (or even commenting on) reviews. If for other reasons my broadband connection is a bit slower than usual, it's almost painfully slow navigating around Dooyoo. And to make it worse, I STILL get a few popups, and every so often a pop-under as well. I don't mind that so much, at least it's not intrusive. But I'm sure the vast number of popups must be very off-putting to most consumers. Then there's the search engine. Oh dear. A few weeks ago I wanted to post a review about Traidcraft 'Geobar' cereal bars. I was pretty sure I'd seen them somewhere on Dooyoo, but since there are over 500 items listed under 'cereal bars', without any order or sub-categories, I really didn't want to page through all those to hunt for something that might not be listed anyway. So I searched for 'Geobar'. No product match, I was told. Then I searched for 'Geobars', knowing that Dooyoo isn't very good at close matches, but it didn't help. Still no product match. I searched for 'Traidcraft'. There were two matches: Traidcraft in general and Traidcraft cookies. No good. I even searched for Traidcraft_Geobars. No matches. OK, I thought, I have to request the product. So I used Google to search for 'Traidcraft Geobars' in order to find a website and a picture. Do you know what the FIRST item on Google's search page was? Yes, it was Dooyoo's category for Geobars! It was here all the time, and had been here long enou
          gh to get that high in the Google rankings. It just couldn't be found by Dooyoo's own search engine. So I wrote my review, and I suppose the surfing public may find reviews like mine via Google. But if any of them try browsing Dooyoo itself, they're going to be very disappointed. Or worse. In their shoes, I'd go and look on Ciao instead since their search engine works extremely well and is updated every day. What's more, Ciao breaks down categories into smaller groupings if there are too many. I tried browsing Dooyoo's books once. What a nightmare! Every author is listed alphabetically: fiction and non-fiction; children's and adults'... all muddled up. It took about two minutes for the page to load, it was so enormous. I suppose it might be acceptable if I ever want to research a particular author (although it would be easier if I could find them directly in the search engine), but suppose I want to look for children's books? Or biographies? Without knowing the authors, I'd be completely stymied. A lesser (but still significant) problem is the length of time it takes for product proposals to be dealt with, and the general lack of communication about them. I did have one accepted a few months ago, but I only discovered it when I was browsing through the 'new products' list. Of course it couldn't be found by the search engine so I had to click the 'new product' link in order to find the item. I wrote the review. About a month later I did get an email from Dooyoo telling me that my product had been accepted - a bit late really! The whole process seemed so long-winded and complicated (it's hardly easy in the first place) that I gave up. On the topic of communication, I don't find Dooyoo's email a
          lerts terribly helpful. Once a day, I receive an email telling me if someone has added me to their friends list, or if one of my friends has written a new review. But there are no clickable links! So I have to make a note of who it is, and try to remember to read them next time I log on. Perhaps I'm lazy, but it would be so much easier if I could just click a link and go straight to the review. It would be even more helpful if you could allow auto-login too, but that's only a minor detail. More of a problem is the lack of comment alerts. I tend to look at the comments on my latest review or two, but if someone has read and commented on one of my older reviews, how would I know? There's a link on my profile page where I can read through comments I've written (although I can't imagine why I'd want to see those again!) but nothing that tells me what comments I've received. I would have thought it would be easy enough to set up, and would make it so much easier to find new comments. Of course comment threads on Dooyoo are rather strange anyway; with no official guestbooks, members have taken to replying to other people in their own comment threads - which is useful if a future reader has a similar query, but not much use for the person who asked the question in the first place, unless they think of going back later to look. Which is not something I've ever done. On the whole I think guestbooks would be a good idea. But the unofficial Tooyoo ones exist, so this is much less important than sorting out the category structure and the searching. I'm not going to complain about the capital letter problem, nor the strange layouts that sometimes creep into our reviews. Charlie Chuckle created an excellent 'fix' for the capital letters, and it's easy enough to edit our reviews to e
          nsure they're laid out correctly. As someone who's only been around for nine months, these - to me - are Dooyoo quirks, not major issues. I understand you have very few staff, so it's probably not a priority to deal with these - despite the fact that badly laid-out reviews look unprofessional, and can hardly help Dooyoo in the consumer eye. I would really like to feel more inspired to visit Dooyoo. I think it's healthy to have more than one site of this sort, and there are many people who used to consider it greatly superior to Ciao. If the problems were sorted out, I'm sure that frustrated ex-members would return, and there would be a bigger influx of newcomers. I realise I'm saying nothing new. These problems have been raised already, and I don't want to nag. But those who set this task for the members wanted to ensure that you get as much appropriate feedback as possible, because it isn't just a few vocal people who find some of these things frustrating. I expect that many give up rather than saying anything, but I'm not one of those. I hate to be so negative, because I know you're doing what you can to keep the site going. I do appreciate your efforts. But without some resolution to the site problems, I really don't see how it can continue much longer. Kukana aka Sue ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site. All entries must be entitled:
          "Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative: " The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/

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            10.08.2004 20:45
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            The Duke says ~ This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise - it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. Paste this little bit at the end of your 'letter': "The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a bette
            r idea of the Dooyoo and the site." All entries must be entitled: "Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative: ". The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/ ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ Dear Dooyoo Team, Let's start on a high... you did, once, have a great site. When I joined back in 2000 I wrote a rather bad opinion (understatement there, it was actually appalling) - some members complained, and within 20 minutes you'd deleted all trace of it. Jeeze I was mad at the time, and didn't visit again for a while. But, after I'd huffed a bit, I did come back to your site, and tried again. I read, rated, commented, and wrote ops that made sense. I realised in hindsight that what had annoyed me wasn't in fact a bad thing but a good one. Deleting my opinion was just one example of how 'on top' of things you were. You had pride in the site, you listened to your members and tried to ensure all issues were dealt with promptly and efficiently. I got to like your site, and visited more. Then came whispers of a redesign, a new Dooyoo, a better site for all. This thing was named 'Aurora' and I looked forward to it as I think lots of other members did too - it should have made the site even better. Note the word 'should'. Oh Dooyoo Team, have you heard the phrase 'if it's not broke don't fix it!'? It kind of springs to mind right now ya know. I really don't have a clue what happened but somewhere along the line you broke your site. And you broke it big time. When I visit your site now, well, I'm often naffed off before I even get to log in because pop-ups are flying at me left right and centre. After battling those, well it can
            take an age just to log in, and when I've managed to log in I'll often be timed out before another page loads. It doesn't seem to matter what browser I use either. Some days you work for me in IE, Mozilla, and Opera. Other days, you just don't want to work for me at all. When you are working though, it's still hit and miss. When I go to the profile pages of my fave members to catch up with their opinions or go to a specific topic I want to read on I'll often find the latest offerings aren't even listed there yet. It's so frustrating ya know, when I'm short on time and want to catch up I still have to trawl your latest ops list to find what I want to read. Some categories even state that no opinions have been written yet, when they in fact have been. (Database problems?) Sometimes when I visit my own profile to look for new comments and such, it's not all plain sailing there either. There have been days when I've logged in and found half my opinions missing. At the moment they are all there although one has mysteriously warped itself under a different product to what it actually is (just in case you care, it's my Who Wants To Be A Millionaire PC game op, and it's now - along with all the others written about it - under the heading of Wild Wild West Steel Assasin PC game, whilst the Who Wants To Be A Millionaire category appears op-less!). That?s just one example, but not great for the consumer who's looking for info, is it? Talking of looking for info it's not just the consumer that has trouble. I tried to find a specific something to write about a few weeks ago - I gave up after an hour of trying. Thankfully, some of your members pointed me in the direction of Google, and
            job done, I found what I wanted. BUT, that brings up two points... 1) Do you really want all searches to be done off site, where there is a chance the consumer will find the info they want at a site other than Dooyoo? And even if that is what you want 2) Why was it left down to other members to help me out when you should be giving me that info. It does make me wonder how many prospective site users have been put off because the search facility has failed to give them anything productive? Oh, and if by chance people do manage to find the op they want, erm, the overall impression of quality can be damaged by this capital letter loss thingy. If a site member can offer a fix, why can't you? Everyone knows sites like this can blow hot and cold like the wind, one minute you're flavour of the month, the next minute you're less popular than meat at a vegetarian society dinner, but how many times do you expect people to come back to wet, windy and cold when they can have dry, fine and hot elsewhere? Most of the problems here probably aren?t that hard to sort out, I think Dooyoo pre-Aurora is proof of that coz the site did work then - it just takes someone to accept that things have gone somewhat tits-up and to actually do something about it. I'll end, as I started, with a high - I've noticed some changes already during the course of this feedback initiative - you put links suggested to you on the community pages to member sites, the Google search and the caps fix thingy - that's a good start. Kinda gives me a little faith that you have been listening to what people said after all. I also noticed less pop-ups today and even managed to do some successful searches on site... coincidence maybe, but I'd like to hope it's the start of better times ahead. Your site has the potential to beat the ?competition? hands down?
            but you have to make the changes. You have some very loyal guides and members who are going out of their way to try and help - I think this 'Feedback Initiative' and the participation in it proves that so let it be the beginning of a new start. Poll your members, email them, ask them what they want, listen to the members and act for them, and they'll keep acting for you in terms of contributing the opinions/reviews that, at the end of the day, your site will be most useless without. Thanks for your time, wiggglypufff aka Karen

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              09.08.2004 06:37
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              The Duke says: Not really a challenge, although more of helping hand for dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which i'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. Paste this little bit at the end of your 'letter': "The above was sent as part of the dooyoo members' feedback initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the dooyoo and the site." <br >All entries must be entitled: "dooyoo memb
              ers' feedback initiative: ". The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/ ********************************************************** I have finally given into temptation. I have been on the sidelines reading all of the excellent submissions written at the request of The Duke, and felt like a bit of fraud unless I took part, so big wigs at Dooyoo, here is my feedback. What I write will surely be nothing you haven?t heard and given a stock answer to many times before, and I am not even confident that you care, but we members (I hate the term ?users?) do care, so have the decency to listen. A lot of people talk about the community on the site, and how it is much better than Ciao, and I have to agree. For some reason, there is less backbiting and general nastiness on this site, but you at Dooyoo are not the reason for this. You have made zero effort to try and create a community, as you know there are people who will set up messageboards, such as Tooyoo and Opinionators, which save you a hell of a lot of effort, whilst you still reap the rewards. I do often wonder if you are just biding your time until every single last person loses their enthusiasm, then you will have no choice but to shut up shop so to speak. I hope this is not the case, and someone looks back pre Aurora and sees how useful and successful this site was. Somebody needs to make a decision though, and move forward in one way or another. As a consumer, it is difficult to find opinions on products or services I may be interested in because of your lacklustre, and frankly barely useable search facility. Those of us who use the site, know we are better off searching via Google, but how many people happening upon the site will not know that, fail to f ind what they are looking for and then never try Dooyoo again? I wouldn?t even try to guess at numbers. All of those issues could be lived with if
              the site was up to date with new products and services, but it is nowhere near. The chance of writing an opinion on the latest release of a film or the like is not happening because of the policies you have in place, and you are missing out on huge opportunities for site hits, which I presume are your main driver. Come on!!! It can?t be that hard to ensure that the Top 10 cinema releases are on the site. It causes a lot of work and friction amongst members, as some feel if there is no category then post anywhere, whilst others are still barely trying to keep the site within the original boundaries. Finally, the guides. Give them the respect that they deserve. They do the job that you can?t be bothered to pay people to do. They frequently receive abuse, down rating and just general nastiness, because they care more about the site than you do. These people give up their own valuable time for a site and a company which basically takes all of their hard work and sticks two fingers up at them. Nobody can dispute that Nathalie is busy, but why does one guide get told of an issue or some news, whilst others do not? It is simple communication, and one you seemed to have failed to grasp a hold all through the horrendous Aurora and ever since. You want people to care? Show you feel the same!!! It is that simple. ****A reply within 24 hours - I am shocked***** Dear dooyoo Members, Thank you for your feedback. We have read your emails on the dooyoo Feedback Challenge. We are sorry if we are replying with quite some delay to some of you. Time is always pretty sparse around here! I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to make its performance better, faster and more
              stable. The search engine will also be much improved with the help of these implementations. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We realize these are all important issues for our members and you are very important to us. TO Charlie_consumer: Is it OK to link to your site? A member suggested putting links to some important sites for other members on the community page and we thought this was a good idea. If you would prefer us to remove this link, please inform us and we will do so immediately. To IainWear: Please provide us with the link to the site which Katie used to be a member of and maybe we can also join it. We have also changed the name of the link "more news" to "more winners" so indeed any misunderstanding can be avoided. To Ickkate: We think it is also a good idea to have some abuse guidelines which would need to be followed clearly. This is an issue which needs to be looked into and which will also require possibly feedback from the members. To Skittle: Anyone interested in being a "community Guide"? Why not try this out indeed! To competition.man: Although it may seem like a good idea to delete any old reviews or products which have not received any reviews within a certain time period, we also need to think about the sale of products and the more are available on the site, the more chance of people writing about them and/ or buying them. To NikkiH: We do care :) Good communication - Now all they have to do is prove they care - I think we all have

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                03.08.2004 17:21
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                Not really a challenge, although more of helping hand for dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I?ll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. Paste this little bit at the end of your 'letter': "The above was sent as part of the dooyoo members' feedback initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the dooyoo and the site." All entries must be entitled
                : "dooyoo members' feedback initiative: ". The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/ Dear Dooyoo Team Personally, I?ve been a member of dooyoo, though not always a very prolific one, for coming up for four years now? In my case, I discovered a rival site first, and was informed by another member of that site that dooyoo was vastly superior ? so came over here. I soon discovered that I agreed with this other person, who?d assured me that the dooyoo community was one of the best you?d expect to find on the internet. Yes, there were a couple of bad apples, there were also some petty squabbles and some downright nastiness flying about, too. However, as many of the old-timers will remember, dooyoo back then was generally a busy, buzzing, thriving internet site, with a great community who were very loyal and proud of ?their? dooyoo. Rating on dooyoo is generally easy to understand, and use, as dooyoo have stuck with the four, basic rating options. And dooyoo members do seem to be much more fair and generous in their ratings than those over on the other side ? which I suspect is down to the competitiveness that?s encouraged over there. But more on that later? Unfortunately, sizewise, the community side of your competitor has you beaten hands down, dooyoo. Of course, Ciao?ers have always believed that they have a better community than that on dooyoo? It?s certainly larger, I don?t think that anybody could argue with that. But better? Well, that?s a matter of opinion, and one that I happen to disagree with! Different? Yes? Bigger? Certainly? But better? I don?t think so! However, this rivalry between the two sites (and the many others that have come and gone in recent years) can only be a good thing in my opinion. Comparisons
                were always bound to be drawn between Ciao and dooyoo ? with most people preferring one to another. This competition is healthy for both sites, and can only serve to keep both sites on their toes, or so I?d always imagined. However, it seems that dooyoo have other ideas, and that you are content to take a back seat whilst Ciao zooms ahead in the popularity stakes. I do have concerns that at some point in the future dooyoo will either pull out completely and leave the UK market free for Ciao, or that the two sites will merge to create one big opinionating site. As dooyoo is popularly seen as the underdog, nowadays, I could quite easily see the site disappearing completely, which would be a real shame. Not that I?m dissing Ciao, here, far from it. In fact I do like Ciao and use that site too, I just prefer dooyoo ? always have. However, where the Ciao team have gone out of their way to accommodate the community, and successfully in the majority of cases, dooyoo have adopted quite a different attitude. I still remember some feedback from dooyoo, way back around the time or Aurora, when long-established dooyoo?ers where defecting to the orange side in their dozens. I can?t quite remember who the quote came from, but seem to recall that it was something to the effect that the dooyoo team didn?t particularly mind that they were losing many of their users, as they felt sure that most of them would trickle back to dooyoo in the future. And, in all fairness, some of them have. I?m not going to mention any names, here, but there are some prominent members out there who gave up on dooyoo for quite some time, but are back again now. So what?s changed? Well, not much, as far as I can tell? The vast majority of the problems that existed back then are still around now. Practically all of the e-mails you?ve already received have mentioned the
                ??? problem, and the lack of capital letters, the former of which disappeared out of the blue one day, whilst the latter is still around to haunt us. Thing is, dooyoo, my husband is a software developer, and he knows exactly how easy most of the dooyoo problems would be to rectify, all they need is a little skill and plenty of time. And that?s the crux of the matter, really, isn?t it? Dooyoo just don?t have the skilled staff to devote to fixing these issues. Is this due to a lack of money, I wonder? Can dooyoo not afford to pay more staff to work longer hours? And what exactly is ?the business plan for 2004? that Katie referred to before she left??? Of course, dooyoo is your business, not ours. We don?t expect you to tell us the intimate details of your accounts ? but the dooyoo members care about dooyoo almost as much as I?m sure you do. We?re not backwards in coming forwards when it comes to giving feedback to you (something which most companies would pay good money for!) However, we?d appreciate a little more feedback coming the other way, too. We feel like we?re in the dark, most of the time, and we do worry about ?our? dooyoo. So much so, in fact, that there has been an awful lot of negativity in the dooyoo community recently. Many people voted with their feet, and defected to the other side, but those of us who remained, I?m afraid to say, have got into the habit of moaning constantly about any aspect of dooyoo that we?re not happy with? Personally, I?m determined to break myself of this habit and support dooyoo in future. After all, although it?s true that the site wouldn?t survive without the users, we?d certainly miss you if you weren?t here, too. To that effect, I?ve vowed to stop moaning about dooyoo (after this opinion, of course, which I?m calling ?constructive criticism) and, further to that, I?m making an effort to click on banners and links every
                time I visit dooyoo, to increase your revenue. Yes, I?m sure it?s only a few pence a day, but every little helps? Oh, and rather than moan about the pop-ups anymore, I?ve installed a pop-up blocker ? problem solved, I now only need to view pop-ups when I want to? As many of my fellow members have already stated, the ?community? page really does need to change. What does it say about the community of a website that only lists competition winners on it?s community page? Not a great deal, if I?m honest! We, the users, or members, or whatever you want to call us, would greatly appreciate more official dooyoo information, rather than having to pick second hand quotes up from the guides, etc. Yes, I am referring to issues such as dooyoo deciding not to add categories for films until they come out on dvd, etc. If you don?t have the time or inclination to update the community page on a regular basis, then why not hand it over to a trusted member of the community to update? You could appoint a ?community? guide with responsibilities to keep the community page up to date with relevant issues, or allow all of the guides to add to the page whenever the need arose (after first having all content checked by dooyoo, of course!) Alternatively, what about allowing guides to include a new, regular challenge on the community page, once a month, for example. You?ve offered to put the work-arounds on the community page, which is a great step forward, and I thank you for that, I just hope that this can be implemented reasonably quickly! Aah, and I?m afraid that whilst we?re talking about speed of implementation, I?m going to have to add my own little moan to the ones you?ve already received regarding the addition of requested categories to dooyoo. Basically, most dooyoo?ers agree that it takes too long. However, I realise that you?ve recently added a whol
                e selection of new categories to dooyoo, so again I thank you for acting on the feedback that you?ve already received. I can assure you that we are all grateful that you?re taking our comments on board and acting upon them. With reference to crowns, I?m sure a certain member would disagree with me, but I?m perfectly happy with the crown as a means of reward. Of course, this could be because I?ve been quite lucky and received a small handful of crowns myself ? however, as far as I?m aware there is only one dooyoo?er out there who disagrees with the crown awarding system at the moment? My advice? Keep crowns as they are, I think the system works perfectly well (and I?m not even going to MENTION the diamonds on your rival site!) I did have one suggestion, though! How about a special crown, or award of some kind, for the most promising new writer ? maybe to be awarded on a monthly basis? Perhaps this would tempt over some of the excellent writers on your opposition website who haven?t yet discovered the joys of dooyoo? And dooyoo can be a joy, in my opinion. The guides do an excellent job, and aren?t getting the recognition they deserve either from dooyoo itself or from the rest of the members. Dooyoo as a whole has a relaxed, uncompetitive atmosphere, we?ve got more of a ?we?re all in this together? ambience going on then on the main rival site. Personally, I think that the mixture of community and competitiveness over on the orange site is counterproductive, the two don?t mesh well, so I do hope that dooyoo doesn?t adopt a similar system for the ?colour coding? of members in the future ? ?I am not a colour, I am a human dooyoo?er!? Sorry, lost it for a moment there? Still, all in all, I feel pretty positive about dooyoo. Yes, I?ve had my moans in the past, doubtless you?ll do thing
                s that?ll annoy me in the future, too, but isn?t that what all good relationships are about? Without a certain amount of conflict, there?s no fun! So, all I can say is keep up the good work, dooyoo. Yes, there are certain issues that need a bit of work, but all in all you?re doing pretty well. Dooyoo is my favourite website, and has been for years. I spend more time on dooyoo than on any other internet site, and considering how many millions of them there are out there, that?s saying quite a lot? If we, as a community, stop and take the time to think about it, I?ll bet that most of us will find that a huge percentage of our online time is spent on dooyoo too? Time to put away the negativity and celebrate what we?ve got? I think so. The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site. Regards, Karen. (skittle) The Reply: Dear dooyoo Members, Thank you for your feedback. We have read your emails on the dooyoo Feedback Challenge. We are sorry if we are replying with quite some delay to some of you. Time is always pretty sparse around here! I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to make its performance better, faster and more stable. The search engine will also be much improved
                with the help of these implementations. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We realize these are all important issues for our members and you are very important to us. TO Charlie_consumer: Is it OK to link to your site? A member suggested putting links to some important sites for other members on the community page and we thought this was a good idea. If you would prefer us to remove this link, please inform us and we will do so immediately. To IainWear: Please provide us with the link to the site which Katie used to be a member of and maybe we can also join it. We have also changed the name of the link "more news" to "more winners" so indeed any misunderstanding can be avoided. To Ickkate: We think it is also a good idea to have some abuse guidelines which would need to be followed clearly. This is an issue which needs to be looked into and which will also require possibly feedback from the members. To Skittle: Anyone interested in being a "community Guide"? Why not try this out indeed! To competition.man: Although it may seem like a good idea to delete any old reviews or products which have not received any reviews within a certain time period, we also need to think about the sale of products and the more are available on the site, the more chance of people writing about them and/or buying them. To NikkiH: We do care :) Your dooyoo team, Nathalie

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                  03.08.2004 06:36
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                  TheDuke says: This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. _______________________________________________________________ Dear dooyoo Around about two and a half year's ago I joined your website. I had only been looking to take advantage of your five free SMS messages a day, but far too easily found that dooyoo had much more to offer. If I was to run across dooyoo as a novice now, I'm not so sure that I would be quite so impressed. Where the site was easy to navigate, it is now a chore. As an established member I often find it
                  hard to locate the areas that I want to look at or post in. In order to post in areas I know exist, I have to trawl through 15-20 pages where a simple search should turn it up. Although google does provide more reliable results than the site's own searches, it is still ridiculous. The most nagging part about many of the problems with dooyoo is that I'm sure that the many of the answers are very simple - much like the fix for the capital letter bug. Apparently it was quite a simple solution, but maybe even if you hadn't worked that out, you could have very simply listened to the fix's author. For instance, if you take the example of the search, surely when items are uploaded on to the database they should somehow be put in to the area that can be searched. ...or am I showing myself up to being the internet ignoramus that I am...? It is just that you sort of indicated this was the case to me... If you are behind on certain elements - like adding suggestions or moving incorrectly posted items - hire a temp for a limited period. I understand this costs money, but I believe it will benefit you in the long term. For me the last six months have been particularly sad. You know my love of films - both as an interested member and more recently as the site's Movie Guide. I had hoped that I would have a lot to offer dooyoo in this capacity, but I feel that it has been limited by your decision not to add cinematic releases to the site until they appear on VHS or DVD. (I had even hoped to help you by providing a list of all upcoming new releases). You know how angry I was, and you know that I feel that you are losing a large number of good writers to other sites because they feel that dooyoo can't offer them the platform it once did. The excitement in reading about new releases is sorely lacking - but I'm repeating myself. You've heard this all before. Recently, what has been more disappointing is th
                  at th ese promises of the database providing VHS or DVD products seem to be purely fictional. The end of May saw a smattering go up, but there has been no indication of when anymore might appear. ...and I'm sorry, but I'll keep on asking the question until I get an answer... or is that until I'm blue in the face? In doing this, you're also setting yourself up future problems. People get desperate and try to post in the wrong areas. I've tried to resist it (bar one accident) myself, but I can see the temptation. There is a real excitement to posting and getting peoples responses, and if you feel you can find a loophole then great! Although, the problem for you is that they will post in the wrong area, and that'll leave you with yet more things to rectify. All in all, I feel that this does point to a number of key points. The lack of information about the site's status that makes people feel frustrated, and that dooyoo doesn't care what the members do or think. They feel undervalued despite being asked to provide content. This isn't helped by the fact that some members have been ignored when reporting abuse, or haven't had responses that actually deal with their query comprehensively. I think you really do underestimate how much site updates would actually help people think that dooyoo is worth waiting for. Tell people that it'll be two weeks until they can write on that film that has just come out on DVD and they'll have a known quantity to deal with rather than the possibility that it'll never happen. Have you ever thought that saying "I don't know at the moment, but we'll try to keep you posted" might also help? Stop being faceless and unaccountable and start supplying information. I would also like to see abuse being dealt with consistently, and to my mind, that means coming up with set of guidelines that outlines how many chances you get, and what so
                  rt of tran sgressions demand what sort of punishment. This might also give more users the confidence that they know that what they are experiencing is abuse, and possibly make the abusers think twice before targeting people. There are a number of things which really do make dooyoo a great site to write on though. Although crowns are widely debated on the site by some members, they are more evenly distributed than some of your competitor's equivalents. But most importantly, there are a large number of users who have been prepared to put up with the problems. They often write brilliantly and can really make me think. Sometimes it is the most interesting for me to read a review by someone who loves something I hate, because I get the opportunity to look at another point of view, and that is always valuable. The site has also made improvements post-Aurora. It is much quicker and reviews are being moved to their correct areas eventually; so maybe with a bit of listening to the members who provide you with content might be able to find your way back to being a bigger and better version of the site I first joined. Here's to hoping and holding on that you'll listen and make some real changes. Thanks Kate _________________________________________________________ Dooyoo's response: Dear dooyoo Members, Thank you for your feedback. We have read your emails on the dooyoo Feedback Challenge. We are sorry if we are replying with quite some delay to some of you. Time is always pretty sparse around here! I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to make its performance better, faster and more stable. The search engine will
                  also be much improved with the help of these implementations. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We realize these are all important issues for our members and you are very important to us. TO Charlie_consumer: Is it OK to link to your site? A member suggested putting links to some important sites for other members on the community page and we thought this was a good idea. If you would prefer us to remove this link, please inform us and we will do so immediately. To IainWear: Please provide us with the link to the site which Katie used to be a member of and maybe we can also join it. We have also changed the name of the link "more news" to "more winners" so indeed any misunderstanding can be avoided. To Ickkate: We think it is also a good idea to have some abuse guidelines which would need to be followed clearly. This is an issue which needs to be looked into and which will also require possibly feedback from the members. To Skittle: Anyone interested in being a "community Guide"? Why not try this out indeed! To competition.man: Although it may seem like a good idea to delete any old reviews or products which have not received any reviews within a certain time period, we also need to think about the sale of products and the more are available on the site, the more chance of people writing about them and/or buying them. To NikkiH: We do care :) Your dooyoo team, Nathalie _________________________________________________________ The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and
                  the site.

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                    31.07.2004 20:13
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                    The Duke started this one off by saying: Not really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. Paste this little bit at the end of your 'letter': "This has been sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving member
                    s a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site." All entries must be entitled: "Dooyoo members' feedback initiative: ". The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/ Dear Dooyoo, I?ve been around a little while, you know. Whilst never the most prolific of writers, this week will mark the 3rd anniversary of the day a colleague recommended this site and I joined. I?ve been here all that time, with a few little breaks here and there and I?ve seen a lot of changes. I?ve been a newbie, and experienced member and a Guide at various occasions in my time on Dooyoo. I?ve seen Aurora coming, coming, coming, and I?ve seen it here. Or, at least, I think I have. I haven?t yet seen it working as well as the site did before, but it?s only been two years, so maybe I should give it a chance, right? I?ve gone from loving this place to becoming highly frustrated by it and thoroughly cynical that you ever listen to your members and wondering if you?re just trying to last us all out so you don?t have to pay us any more. This would be the first point I?d like to make. Over the years there have been some pretty fine suggestions made in regard to site improvement, not least in the last couple of weeks as a result of this Initiative. Comments on the new Aurora were welcomed when that was released way back when, and then you decided you didn?t want them all that much after all. Comments on site bugs even then were largely ignored and the one that did get fixed (that annoying question mark problem) took 18 months and largely seemed to happen by accident rather than because you?d taken our feedback on board and set about sorting the problem out. I know you?re replying to these opinions with a vague standard response, which is nice. But when your attempts to distrac
                    t us by at least giving the impression you?re reading all this have passed, can you please actually do it? You?re going to find out here that we do still care for Dooyoo, very much and we do want it to be as good as it used to be (i.e., better than Ciao) and we would like it to be that way again. And whilst I know you?re pushed for time, not having many staff in the UK side of Dooyoo, bear in mind that criticism doesn?t have to come to you. There are various opinion site related forums around at the moment, many of which offer up wider views on Dooyoo than you?ll get from this Initiative. Katie used to be a member of this kind of site and used to stay in touch. Why not do the same? There are problems, and members are unhappy ? you must realise this? Take a little time to look around, and you?ll see how hacked off many of us are. Something else that might bear thinking about. Research over the years has suggested that more than 90% of all customers who are unhappy with a service never complain, they just walk away. How many members have you lost in the last year or two? Not visibly, as we don?t close our accounts, we just vanish into the distance. You have no idea, do you? Well, count how many people you?ve received E-Mails from as a part of this Initiative and over the years complaining about something and multiply by nine or ten. That?s really how many people are unhappy with Dooyoo and I?ll bet the number is fairly equivalent to the number of members who still post regularly. Maybe this is why we?re thought of as ?Members? and not ?customers?, so you can ignore our views with less guilt? Well, just one thing to remember ? if we all walk away, and it?s not so hard to believe, Dooyoo is shafted. Much like a business and their customers. You need customer loyalty, and you have that. But it?s a tenuous thing at best, and you?
                    ve shown every intention of stretching our loyalty until it breaks. At the end of the day, I want to feel that you place value on what I do for you and that my opinions matter. You?ve not proved that to me, or any of us, in a LONG time. Maybe one of the best examples of this is the Dooyoo magazine which, once upon a time, contained members? contributions and talked about things members had done and written. Now it?s merely a list of links we can click and would be more of interest to non-members than to us. For something that should be encouraging to the membership, it looks like it takes absolutely no time or effort to produce on your part whatsoever. There are other indications that the members don?t seem to matter. The Community page is one such. Apart from the competition, what else is there? It seems that this is your main priority for members of the community and what does it do? Well, it?s a blatant attempt to get people to add to your database in certain categories. And clicking on ?more news? just gives you the lists of previous winners. Surely there is more to interest the average Dooyoo member than this? If there is, why doesn?t it appear? And if there isn?t, why should we be expected to hang around? And why is the competition so restrictive? Do you not want people to write in other categories? Other things make me suspect this is true, but I?ll come to those in a moment. But while we?re on the Community page, what?s with the Hall of Fame? You still have the link there, equally as prominent as any of the others (and the links to the FAQ shouldn?t be hidden away at the bottom of the page ? if you want new members, you?re going to have to help them out in their early days a little more than you do) but nothing?s happening with it. Despite inviting nominations and mentioning the benefits of being in the H
                    ;all of Fame, no-one has been added for 18 months. Why not? Either dispose of the Hall of Fame entirely or start using it the way it always used to be. As promised, there are other ways that those of us who don?t know much about computers are overlooked. Most of the product suggestions of late have been automatic ones, which is easy for you, but bloody annoying for us. For one thing, it makes finding new things in the New Product list virtually impossible, as the list is almost always completely full of stuff you?ve added because some external source requested it, rather than stuff the members want to write about ?add a product? link doesn?t work ? it took me nearly 20 attempts to add something recently because the form kept clearing the category whenever I tried to submit. I?ve now added the request, but several weeks on, the product hasn?t been added, and I have no idea if you?ve rejected my suggestion or when it will appear? Let?s have a bit more communication here, please. And why are certain categories not being added to at all? Why no current movies? For sure, a lot of DVDs and videos get bought, but there are more people who will see a hit film at the cinema than will buy a DVD in the first week of release, and it?s those people that want to know if a film is any good. I don?t want to contemplate going to see a new film and wonder if it?s any good?but then have to wait 6 months to find out if it is any good?by which time it?s too late to see it at the cinema. So I have to spend £15-£20 on a DVD instead of £6-£7 on a cinema ticket. This course of action is costing the membership money, you know. And what?s with ?Speaker?s Corner?? Once a lively forum for debating the issues of the day, it?s now merely a forum for those with an interest in history, as that?s all most of the topics in there are. Sure, some of them a
                    still relevant, but very few are the burning issues of the day. We can still talk about the war in the Gulf, but not offer any thoughts as to the future of Iraq now that it?s supposedly over. What?s available to us isn?t that great either. If you can spend hours adding things to certain categories, why not all of them? In categories like Travel, Electronics and Software, we can find things to write about that most of us have never heard of. I understand that you bought a lot of these lists from external sources, but are there not similar lists for films, books and music, where a lot of people are happier to write and would benefit more from a large addition to the range, rather than having to wait a month or more to post their opinions on something they?ve read, seen or listened to and would like to write about. And for crying out loud, how many times do we have to tell you? Sort out the search. It?s all very well having to wait a month for something to be added, but when we have to wait another month for it to come up on the search, that?s just adding insult to injury. You know, while I?ve been writing this, I?ve had Dooyoo Germany running in another window. And guess what? On Dooyoo Germany, an item that was added on Thursday can be found by running a search. On Dooyoo UK, an item added last Monday can?t be. If it?s that easy to add a new item to the search database on one site, why not on the other? And whilst I probably shouldn?t be comparing one site to another, why is there more on the Dooyoo Germany Community Page? Why is that site not affected by the search problems of Dooyoo UK or by the problem with capital letters that Dooyoo UK has? How come I can browse the new products by category with one click via the Community Page on Dooyoo Germany when it
                    takes at least 3 clicks on Dooyoo UK?and takes a lot longer? Why can I navigate Dooyoo Germany a lot easier and a lot faster than I can Dooyoo UK? How come I can write about Spiderman 2 and Shrek 2 on Dooyoo Germany when neither is available on DVD or video in either country until December? I don?t speak a great deal of German, but enough to understand that, compared to Dooyoo Germany, we?re getting screwed in a number of ways. I can see that UK payments rates are better, but is this the difference? Are you paying technical people from what the Dooyoo Germany members aren?t getting? Surely both sites work from largely the same background, so why can?t we have the technical fixes and the attention to detail that Dooyoo Germany seem to have? If that means taking a little from our payments to account for this, then so be it. Those of us who have been here for a while have seen that happen on multiple occasions. But all you do is take, you never give back. It?s like the Government telling us they?ll increase our taxes to pay for improving stuff, but the improvements never happen. Except that you just increase the tax, and don?t even bother with false promises, much less try and make true ones. Enough about the search and the addition of new stuff. Indeed, the search would matter less if stuff were easier to find the ?long? way around. But it?s not. The navigation needs sorting out, as it takes too long and too many clicks to find anything. I suspect that the reason the pages load faster on Dooyoo Germany is that there?s not so much stuff cluttering them up. But the lists are longer, and they?re out of the way on the left hand side of the page, rather than in the middle of the page. You know, I suspect a lot of the extra stuff on Dooyoo UK is actually d
                    uplicated entries to the database. It?s not uncommon that you can find two entries on the recent products list that are exactly the same product, and sometimes they?ve not been put in the same category! The quality checking of the database has long since fallen by the wayside and it?s not funny any more. Half the time the search doesn?t give you any results, and the other half, it gives you several results for the same thing in several different places. Sort it out, please. While we?re on the subject of sorting it out, can you sort out some of the stuff you were asked for 2 years ago? Please, can we have some of the better stuff from the old Dooyoo back? You know, the things that went missing, like the Hall of Fame. Like the ability to add alerts to my reviews so I can see when they were read and how many times? Not that this matters so much any more, as you?ve lost so many members that no-one reads back any more. And why is it so difficult to cash in? Not the process, but actually getting to the amounts. Sure, the payments are the same as they have been for a while, but it doesn?t take a mathematical genius to work out that if I was getting 80-100 reads on opinions 18 months ago and I?m only getting 20-30 now, I?m earning less. But the limits for cashing in haven?t changed. Why £20 on vouchers? Why not £10? And why do I have to earn £100 (once a possibility, but not any more) before I don?t get charged for claiming the money I?ve worked pretty darn hard to earn. And where are the people who can fix the UK site? Are they all too busy working in German? And why only a part time member of staff for Dooyoo UK, when there is enough abuse, product suggestions and admin work to require someone full-time? Prove to us you?re as dedicated to the site as we are, like you used to be, because I can?t see it. I
                    know I just sound like a cantankerous old git after all this lot, but it?s been a long time since I?ve been so worked up and upset by something I?ve written nearly 2500 words castigating it. And I could keep going, believe me. These are just the things that come quickly to mind after being invited to write to you. Others, both experienced and more recent members, have made other suggestions and comments and all I ask is that this time you listen, prove to us that you?ve listened and actually do something about it before more and more people walk away, and the only additions to the Dooyoo database are product one, because we?re all too disenchanted to bother working on your behalf any more. Yours, Iain Wear. This has been sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site. Today (9th August), I received the following reply from Dooyoo. Although it?s a reply to several members? opinions, I?ve left the whole E-Mail as it was received.? Dear dooyoo Members, Thank you for your feedback. We have read your emails on the dooyoo Feedback Challenge. We are sorry if we are replying with quite some delay to some of you. Time is always pretty sparse around here! I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to ma
                    ke its performance better, faster and more stable. The search engine will also be much improved with the help of these implementations. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We realize these are all important issues for our members and you are very important to us. TO Charlie_consumer: Is it OK to link to your site? A member suggested putting links to some important sites for other members on the community page and we thought this was a good idea. If you would prefer us to remove this link, please inform us and we will do so immediately. To IainWear: Please provide us with the link to the site which Katie used to be a member of and maybe we can also join it. We have also changed the name of the link "more news" to "more winners" so indeed any misunderstanding can be avoided. To Ickkate: We think it is also a good idea to have some abuse guidelines which would need to be followed clearly. This is an issue which needs to be looked into and which will also require possibly feedback from the members. To Skittle: Anyone interested in being a "community Guide"? Why not try this out indeed! To competition.man: Although it may seem like a good idea to delete any old reviews or products which have not received any reviews within a certain time period, we also need to think about the sale of products and the more are available on the site, the more chance of people writing about them and/or buying them. To NikkiH: We do care :) Your dooyoo team, Nathalie In answer to the questions raised directly to me, I sent Natalie the following reply: Hi Nathalie, Thanks for your reply. I can understand you're pretty busy, even without all the additional wo
                    rk this Feedback Initiative requires of you. The sites I was referring to were actually among the links that Jill Murphy provided a couple of weeks back. Katie was a member of ChatterWeb, which is sadly no more, but Opinionators now fills a similar role, so that might be useful, so you can see what members are saying about Dooyoo and post Dooyoo's comments on what we're saying. That's at www.opinionators.co.uk. Katie also had a GuestBook at Tooyoo, (www.crosswordcheats.com/tooyoo) for much the same reason. It's just an easier way to keep in touch, and another place where Dooyoo can let the members know what was going on. She was always pretty good at letting us know when she was on holiday, for example, and if there was a problem with the system and crowns weren't being awarded on the normal day. Little stuff, but stuff that the members in general are quite interested in as a rule. I don't know if Katie was also a part of the Yahoo Dooyoo Guides group, or if that's even still going. One of the longer standing current Guides should be able to answer that one for you. Thanks again for your reply, and I shall be watching with interest for future developments. Take care, IAIN

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                      31.07.2004 07:36
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                      A challenge yet not a challenge , yes you've guessed it , it's The Duke's fabulous idea , where you write a review on your opinion of DooYoo , from you the users view point , post it on DooYoo then email it to them and await any feedback , which must be attached to the end of yor review once / if received...... so here goes : ---------------------- Currently there are only two main consumer information sites in the UK , these being Ciao and Dooyoo . Both have their good and bad points . Ciao : To me Ciao are the more professional , being a large site with good sponsors does help . Their site is well designed , regularly updated , fast and easy to navigate . They also have an excellent member guestbook facility , as well as a fairly good paid survey section. Another positive is the ability to have a payment from your earning fromas little as £5.00 without any penalties. There is however a certain clicky feel to the site , with a clear preference to certain members . Renumeration for submitted reviews ( sorry ops ) , is disorganised , poor and simply confusing , especially where it comes to the Premium Fund. Add to this a high level of abuse , and a lot of tit-for-tat users , which can make for an often unfriendly site ( an example a person submitted an op on Jokes ( unpiad category ) , listed his favourite jokes hoping to bring a smile to peoples faces . One user read his op , rated it not useful , provided web links to all the jokes and then reported the writer to Ciao on the basis that the op was not his own work . Now , while no action was taken against the writer , it still affected his confidence and attitude towards Ciao. Furthermore they have the Community Points Score , that all users are assigned . The more ops submitted , positive ratings obtained and also number of reads / ratings they make lead to a higher score . Sadly the points scheme is ill thought out and unfair and open to abuse ( eg some reads an
                      op, then rates then comments on said op , with simlpe 'Hi there stranger' type comment , which is inmatrial to the op subject , yet earns positive points ! DooYoo: Good points : 1) A much more friendly place , with no real abuse problem . 2) All reviews are able to receive a payment per read . 3) The equivilant to the Premium Fund , the Crown is shared amongst more people - yes it means a lesser payment , but more people get a slice of the pie , a system I whole heartedly agree with . 4) Replies - so Dooyoo has so few staff , yet in all fairness I've always had a quick response when it comes to direct emails concerning the site,even if not that helpful on occassions. Bad points : whilst these outwiegh the good points , you cannot simply put them on a scale and say too many bad points the site is useless , but anyway here is what I see as bad points : 1) Search engine - inefficient , often giving inaccurate results , sometimes failing to find a subject that is definately there . 2) Submissions - You write your op , yet its appearance is lost in submission . Try to alter and you find your correctly written submission still there. There are ways around these problems , but the problem should be fixed in-house and permenantly. 3) Regular product updates . Some are now done monthlyish via an ouside database , others are in the lap of the gods ( DooYoo ) as to wether they get inclusion or not - often when they are allowed they are in totally the wrong section , additionally it can take weeks for a suggestion to be listed. As for these outside database monthly inclusions , simply not quick enough . Films for example are released on a weekly basis , and DVD / Video's on a daily basis - where's Shrek 2 , is been on general release for a month now , yet DooYoo can't / won't include it. 4) Speed - I only have a 56k modem , and I find I'm waiting for the site to do my required actions for
                      up to 85% of the time , eg. It can take up to 10 minutes to read and rate a single op , yet the actual read / rate actions take 3-5 minutes dependant on review size. On Ciao you could read/rate upto 10 ops in an hour session , while on DooYoo you'de be lucky to read / rate 5 . 5) Guestbook - we need one easily accessable from each users profile . TooYoo is okay , but its off site and often forgotten. 6) Payments . Why do we need to wait until we have the equivilant of £55.00 in earnings then for the honour of a payment have a £5.00 charge levied upon us. Needed : 1) Guestbook 2) Improved product update policy 3) Site : speed improvement , and reliable / accurate search engine. 4) Dedicated product suggestion employee and easy workable link . 5) Remove the dead wood thats clogging the system - if a listed product hasn't had any review submissions within a month of being listed , remove it from the database. This should also apply to members who join but never actually contribute - delete those who have never contributed , suspend those who have not written in a long time ( say 6 months ) . 6) When it comes to product listings, lets have then simplified - , eg: a user writes about 'KitKat' then he writes about 'Orange KitKat' , then 'Mint KitKat' , then 'White KitKat' then 'KitKat Kubes' ...... - basically the same product , just different flavours / packaging. The initial op could simply be updated to include the new varieties as and when tried - this will save on payments per read , and reduce the data base total , yet the review would still be of use to people. 7) When it comes to a submission , why not have an optional spell checker just a click away ? Sometimes I write on the spur of the moment , while online ( as this op is ) - it would be nice to have a built-in spell checker , rather than me having copy and paste into my W.P. etc. etc. 8) More regular product up
                      dates . 9) Surveys / Tests - get on the bandwagon , sponsors will pay for the use of such services , which in turn brings in revenue for DooYoo . 10) Dedicated site management / repair staff to keep on top of things . 11) Reduce the minimum payment to £10 ( then multiples of £5.00 ) and have no ncurred charges . 12) Pop-ups : Yes they bring in money , but lets show them we're a friendly site and get rid of them . Instead use in-page banners , but restrict the size for speed reasons. ------------------------ So there you have most of my thoughts on this site - wonder what DooYoo will say ? Now its over to you .......

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                        29.07.2004 23:03
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                        TheDuke says: This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. Dear dooyoo As someone who?s been a member of dooyoo for almost four years (admittedly that includes a break of about six months) who has posted over 300 opinions or reviews, I?ve seen more ups and downs on the site than the Bee Gees had in their entire career. I think very few people who have belonged for more than two years will dispute my assertion that for a long time the site was s
                        treets ahead of the competition. Since the much-hyped Aurora and major redesign, things have gone decidedly askew. As someone who?s also posted on rival sites ciao, u-rate-it and BigRag (of which only the former now survives), I?d like to offer the following brickbats and bouquets. If one thing gets up users? noses, it?s the notorious capital punishment. Granted, one member has provided us with a link enabling us to copy and paste into a frame which will restore upper case letters to the first 500 words or so, the way we meant them. (It works most but not all of the time). But for older opinions thus afflicted, don?t you think it looks shoddy and amateurish? It?s been going on for over a year now. Surfers can access opinions through google and presumably the other search engines. Just what sort of impression do you think they will get from looking at one or two ?afflicted ops?? What does it do for your reputation? Not a lot, I fancy. The time it takes for new categories to be added is often far too slow. I?ve known new ones to be added within a few days, but sometimes it?s taken weeks, even months. Apart from competition winners, the community page seems to have been frozen in aspic for ages. What does this tell us about the dooyoo community, or the way staff see it? Once again, not much. The site navigation aspect is a nightmare. Finding products on the site is so hit-and-miss that it requires inordinate patience, and a lengthy process of clicking through all the possible permutations or pages. Only the most patient users with plenty of time on their hands are going to persevere. The Hall of Fame was a reflection of how vibrant the community was. I?m proud to say that I was a HoFer back in the halcyon days of summer 2001, when a number of us were so addicted to dooyoo that we were logging in several times of
                        day, or else planning members? meets here and there. The HoF link is still accessible, yet seems to have fallen into abeyance around August 2002. I haven?t checked how many of those hallowed individuals are still members of dooyoo, but I can think of several who were highly respected in their day and have now left. Some of the problems on dooyoo probably arise from a lack of staff. I remember in 2000 when there were category managers in abundance ? those days have long since gone. Clearly, if there isn?t the money to make the site cost-effective and have staff, that?s the way it is. But one thing which could and should be done is the occasional cull of categories for anything out of date, or at least locking of same. For example, we can still read plenty of ops on the aforementioned BigRag and u-rate-it, both of which have gone. Another is the excellent but sadly folded purefiction site. (I know, as I have written ops on all three). There are at least two other book reference websites (What am I going to read? And Read since 1974) which have bitten the dust but are still listed. Removing these from dooyoo would surely increase its efficiency and value to users. It?s rather frustrating to read a 5-star op on one of these, only to go clocking and get a ?not found? message. Other people have responded to this initiative and emphasised most if not all of these points and several others besides. There?s not much point in my repeating them, other than just to add my two-penn?oth to what I see as some of the more pressing concerns. Having returned to the site quite recently, I?m encouraged to see several of the old guard still around, in addition to several excellent new (well, new to me anyway) writers. This proves that dooyoo has the capacity to attract new talent, which is healthy. It also proves that there?s a hard core of
                        loyal members prepared to put up with more than they need to. In fact, most of them have already contributed in similar fashion. There are plenty of positives about dooyoo. I think the crowns system works very well, and the across-the-board 3p per read is much fairer in my view than ciao?s highly selective system (to say nothing of their secretive bonus awards). I also think dooyoo does the right thing in not trying to emulate the bitterly competitive community points system, which may reward the more consistent and long-serving members but only sets them up as Aunt Sallies for the let?s-take-?em-down-a-peg faction. Dooyoo has always been one of my most frequently visited sites. That it has seen off several of its competitors in a fiercely competitive world says something about its durability, and proves it?s getting things right at least part of the time. But it could be so much better. Please? Paste this at the end of your 'letter': "This has been sent as part of the dooyoo members' feedback initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the dooyoo and the site." The category to be used is: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/ Thanks, ©JOHNDMR2004

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                          28.07.2004 20:16
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                          TheDuke says:

                          This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works:

                          You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site.

                          Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are.

                          ____________________

                          Dear dooyoo,

                          I've been a member of dooyoo over 2 years now and although I missed the days when it was far busier than 'the other side', I've still seen a certain deterioration on the site.
                          There are far too many niggly little problems that discourage old members from returning, and new members from sticking around.

                          It seems to me that the
                          vast majority of these problems would be relatively easy to solve, but I'm no expert. I'm one of those people who think a ram is a sheep with balls.
                          Be that as it may, many of these small problems have actually been solved by members so I don't see why you can't take advantage of this.

                          The capital letter bug is pretty annoying and I don't think that the unprofessional appearance of reviews does much to encourage traffic to the site.
                          It's easily fixed by using Charliechuckle's programme. If it's too difficult to implement this onto the site, why not post a link to the programme on the community page?
                          Speaking of the community page, it's not really used to its full potential, is it?

                          The search engine on the site is erratic, to say the least. I usually recommend members use google to search for categories, but I've recently discovered that this can be fallible as well. My last review was about the town of Ronda in Spain and I couldn't find it either with the dooyoo search engine, or on google. I DID find it by a lengthy process of elimination, but if I find it so difficult after 2 years on the site, what must be like for newer members?
                          What's so frustrating is that you have a massive database of products, but nobody can find them!!!

                          Product suggestion is another bugbear. If this was speeded up, I have no doubts that far more reviews would be posted, traffic would increase, and that's got to be good for business.
                          I notice that quite a few products have been added this morning, which is great, but I for one haven't tried to add a product for a long time. It's far too discouraging.

                          Someone else suggested you scrap the monthly prize draw for new products and use the money saved to improve some of the technical issues. I think t
                          his is a great idea! I don't think anyone would miss the draw (I could be wrong) but I'm sure every member would appreciate improvements to the running of the site.

                          Many members complain about the slow running of the site and the pop-ups. I use the Opera browser for dooyoo, and I find it only slightly slower than other sites, but not enough for me to complain about! Also, the pop-ups on Opera don't seem to be so intrusive and incessant compared to using ME. I understand the pop-ups generate income, and personally, I don't switch them off (see how good I am to you!), but as I said, they aren't so intrusive on Opera and if I were using ME for dooyoo, I would certainly block them, or perhaps use the site less.
                          Not good business sense.

                          As for guestbooks and the community side of things, I think in many ways dooyoo have got it right. On other sites, the community aspect can take over and detract from the very purpose of the site.
                          However, many members WOULD like more emphasis on GB's. Why not post a link to tooyoo on the community page? I'm sure that would suffice.

                          The discussion categories really need to be updated. While I understand that these categories might not be as financially viable as product cats, the members like them and as they open up debate, they also encourage traffic. More traffic = more potential advertising revenue.



                          It's not all doom and gloom though, I think dooyoo beats the competition in many ways, not least the reward system.
                          I like the way that it's an automatic 3p per unique member click on a review. Some site discriminate against reviews in certain categories by paying lower amounts and don't pay anything at all for quite a lot. The downside is that you don't get as ma
                          ny reads on dooyoo. Can you imagine if reviews here got an average of 50-60 hits? In no time at all the place would be buzzing and the competition would be struggling!

                          The crown system is good too. Some would disagree, but I think it's open, fair, more democratic and it's far easier to be awarded a crown on dooyoo than a jewel thingy elsewhere. It means that more members are rewarded for their efforts rather than a few elite. And nobody complains about them (unless you look around!)


                          Dooyoo seems to be understaffed, and I know some members have complained about emails not being answered etc. In my experience I have found dealing with the staff easy and straightforward. Obviously, because I'm a guide and have at least weekly contact with the staff, it may mean that I'm perhaps not the best person to discuss this. But nevertheless, I have communicated with you on my own, and other members behalf regarding all sorts of issues: from late payments to harassment. I've always found the response to be quick and efficient.
                          Again, perhaps if a message was posted on the community page suggesting members take up issues with the guides as go-betweens, then you wouldn't be swamped with emails and problems could be resolved far quicker.

                          Speaking of guides, I also think the guides on dooyoo make a big difference to the running of the site. In recent weeks, there has been more discussion between the guides and staff and this HAS to be a good thing. The guides are a good buffer between dooyoo and its members - most sites don't have the same sort of relationship, and I think they suffer because of it.
                          (I don't suppose there's any chance of a weekly payment for the guides...thought not!)

                          In conclusion, dooyoo should be miles* ahead of its competitors (*d'ya see what I did there?)
                          . Dooyoo is like a broadsheet compared to 'the other side's' tabloid. The writing on dooyoo generally seems to be less frivolous and immature and if only these technical issues could be resolved, I could see a bright and rosy future for the site.

                          I urge you to take on board the thoughts and suggestions that I, and others have put forward to you. I'm pretty sure that you'll find almost exactly the same complaints from most members.
                          I realise that financial constraints may determine what you can, or can't do, but most members are loyal to the site and I'm sure that by pulling resources, all these minor difficulties (and I'm still of the opinion that they ARE minor) could be easily resolved.

                          At the end of the day, most dooyoo members who are also members of other sites, will tell you that if these technical problems were sorted out, then dooyoo would be their first choice of opinion site.
                          You have the opportunity to lead the field in opinion sites...or sink without trace.

                          I know which option I'd go for!

                          Drew (proxam)

                          _______________________


                          Paste this little bit at the end of your 'letter':
                          "This has been sent as part of the dooyoo members' feedback initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the dooyoo and the site."


                          The category to be used is:
                          http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/archive/internet/public_notice/




                          Cheers,
                          ©proxam2004

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                            27.07.2004 22:14
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                            TheDuke says: This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. To whom it may concern I?ve been a member of dooyoo.co.uk for just over three years now. This will be my 150th opinion, and I?ve won 70-odd crowns. I hope this doesn?t make me sound arrogant, but I would hope that, if you are in the business of listening to your members, I?d be the kind of member you might be willing to listen to. I have stuck with the site through its catastrophic re-de
                            sign, and have soldiered on despite the continuing technical problems. I love the idea behind the site (or at least the notional, public-facing idea) of allowing people to share their experiences of various products and services, I love that the usefulness of individual opinions is determined by us, the users, and I love that we get paid for writing. So whatever criticisms I have, there?s certainly no immediate danger of my leaving, and I suspect the same is true for the majority of dooyoo members. But my goodness, you don?t half put a strain on loyalty sometimes. You urgently need a redesign. Look at the home page - it?s a usability nightmare. Far too many links fighting for space, about five different navigation bars, and important links not visible unless the user scrolls down the page. To make matters worse, there?s a shocking lack of consistency in the positioning of secondary navigational elements when you click around the site - there seems to be little if any internal logic to the layout. Your main competitor, ciao, has a much better, uncluttered homepage that makes the site look rather more inviting. Have you got anyone at all who?s looking at accessibility? Because I don?t think your site is particularly accessible right now, and I think that could potentially create legal problems. Bobby Worldwide, one of the industry-standard accessibility bodies, offers a neat little service on its website (http://bobby.watchfire.com) which allows you to enter a URL and automatically see how well it does in terms of accessibility guidelines. I entered the dooyoo homepage, and without going into the tedious technical details, it didn?t do very well. Also, I?ve a feeling that pop-ups are really not good from an accessibility viewpoint - I don?t find the pop-ups that annoying - you do, after all, have to make money somehow - but I think they?r
                            e going to be considered bad practice before too long. Add to this some of the rather glaring technical problems around the site (e.g. the peculiar problem with capital letters not appearing as capitals in the first half of opinions), and it seem obvious that you urgently need is a professional site audit by a third party and someone to act on its findings. However, since it seems that the editorial staff for the UK site consists of one, part-time person, I?m going to assume that there aren?t enough resources for any of that. Pity. But there are three problems that I see as very urgent indeed, and which I feel you could do something about. The first, and most urgent, is the site navigation (another usability issue), specifically the near-impossibility of finding a product on the site using the tools dooyoo provides. The search, as I?m sure you?re aware, is rubbish. It doesn?t include items that have been added recently in its results. Which leaves the user little option but to click through pages and pages in their chosen category in the (often vain) hope that the item they?re looking for will be there. It hardly needs pointing out that consumers looking for advice on a product aren?t going to do this. Would it be too difficult to increase the number of items on product pages from 10 to, say, 50? If I?m trying to find a DVD beginning with ?T?, I potentially have to trawl through 94 pages. Increase the number of items on a page and it all becomes a lot easier. This surely can?t be too difficult, as it wasn?t long ago that the number of opinions in the newest reviews page was increased from 50 (I think) to 250. As every sensible dooyoo member knows, of course, it?s far easier just to use google to try and find items on the site. Perhaps you could stick a google search on the site somewhere? (And by somewhere, I mean somewhe
                            re obvious, maybe in place of that web search link, which doesn?t seem to be particularly useful.) Failing that, maybe a bit of text on the dooyoo search results page advising users to try google if their product isn?t listed? This may seem slightly defeatist, and may not appeal from a branding point of view, but you could probably phrase the text in such a way that it made it clear that the dooyoo search is only *temporarily* broken, and will be fixed as soon as possible. (I mean, presumably that is the case, right? Someone will have to fix it at some point? Won?t they? Er? will they?) The second big problem is that items aren?t added to the site often enough, or quickly enough. I remember a time when new items I?d suggested would be added within a week, almost without fail. Now it can take months, if they get added at all. The more up-to-date your product selection is, the more useful it is to consumers, and the more hits you?ll get. The recent decision to stop adding films on general release is a good example of exactly what?s wrong with this aspect of dooyoo at the moment. Certainly, if you?re uploading huge databases of DVDs the films will get added eventually - but only when they?ve been around for long enough to be released on DVD, and then they?ll be extremely difficult to find on the site anyway. I often look at reviews of new films, to decide which ones I?ll go and see. Lots and lots and lots of other people do the same. Do you not feel that you?re perhaps shooting yourselves in the foot slightly by not offering that when so many people would find it useful? (This point obviously applies to all other product categories too - the more up-to-date you can be, the better.) As I understand it, you don?t have enough staff to add new items regularly. The answer seems simple enough. Work experience. Get some fresh-faced kid who?s ju
                            st left school., or some gullible undergraduate, teach them how to use the system (can?t be that complicated, surely no more than half an hour of someone?s time), and away they go. If you don?t have office space for them, find one who can do it from home (it?ll keep him from surfing porn, anyway). Then everyone?s happy. You?re happy, because your products database is more up-to-date and comprehensive, we?re happy, because we get products added more quickly, and you?ll be giving the database monkey some valuable experience to stick on his CV. What possible objection could anyone have to such a scheme? The final point concerns the dooyoo community. Dooyoo still has a reasonably vibrant community feel about it - like all good online communities it has its responsible leader types, it?s wannabe-mavericks, it?s pantomime villains etc. I?m fairly sure that the community is what keeps a lot of the longer-standing members here. It is, surely, something that you should value and try to encourage. Presumably you want the opinions on the site to be as high-quality as possible. Which means that you want to keep the better writers. Which means you should invest some time in the community. Yes? Look at the weekly crowns list - plenty of crowns go to writers who?ve been around for ages (lots also go to newer writers - there are good writers joining all the time - your challenge is to keep them here). But I?m afraid that, at the moment, I see very little being done to encourage the community. There are the guides, of course. But they aren?t dooyoo staff and, while they all, in my experience, do an excellent job, it doesn?t seem entirely fair that you?re basically leaving them and them alone to service the needs of the community. There are plenty of things you could do. Really simple things. Maybe set up a ?challenge? each month (challenges are fairly popular with members, a
                            nd I?m sure it would take all of about five minutes a month for someone to think of one). You could add some new categories to speaker?s corner, as that was always a wildly popular section. You know, try and make things a bit more fun. Perhaps something like the old Hall of Fame (you should really remove the link to that since it?s obviously not active any more). I seem to recall that, ages ago, you were talking about having a ?featured member? or something like that, who?d get a mention in the newsletter - why not do something like that? You wouldn?t need to create a new page on the site, or award any miles or anything, just mention someone, write a couple of lines about the kinds of opinions they write or something. Anything, really, to give us the idea that you, the site, actually recognises us as individual people rather than as a collective content provider. And then there?s the community page. No news has been added to it for months now, apart from lists of competition winners. Why not? Is there no news? None at all? What about your decision to stop adding films on general release? That?s news. I found out about that because the film guide mentioned it on her profile page. Was there an official announcement? If so, where was it? If not, why not? Keep us informed about things, yes? Last time you had a cut in the rewards given to opinions (down from 5p to 3p) we were warned a month in advance. Would that happen if another reward cut happened? I?ve worked on dozens of websites in my time. I understand that ultimately your only priority is making money; that?s everyone?s only priority. But every website I?ve ever worked on that?s had a community aspect has gone to considerable lengths to encourage and foster that community. And dooyoo, at least recently, hasn?t done so at all. (The last time I can think of was December last
                            year when you doubled our rewards for reads - now that was a great idea, and not just because we all got to our latest vouchers slightly more quickly - it made us feel like we were, in some vague way, actually appreciated). Anyway, there it is. I can?t see why it would be impossibly difficult do the few things I suggested above, and they really would help everyone. You?ll have been getting lots of these emailed to you, and I?m not sure whether I really expect you to respond, but we?re only doing it because we want the site to be better, both for our sakes and for yours. I'm still very fond of dooyoo, and hope the site is around for many more years to come. Kind regards Richard ?hogsflesh? The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site. And here?s the answer I got (not a bad answer as these things go): Dear dooyoo users, Thank you very much for your feedback. We have read your opinions on The Duke's dooyoo feedback challenge with great interest. I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to make its performance better, faster and more stable. The search engine will also be much improved with the help of these implementations. Our main focus is the users and th
                            e community. They are very important to us. We hope to implement email replies to product suggestions shortly. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We think it is also a good idea to put the work-arounds up on the community page. Could one of you (maybe Jill as you suggested the idea) send all the links to us in one email so we can have all the important links together? Thank you very much for your suggestions of improvements, Your dooyoo team, Nathalie dooyoo.co.uk Ltd. 2nd Floor 138 Portobello Road Notting Hill London W11 2DZ

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                              27.07.2004 16:30
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                              ********** TheDuke says: This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. ********** Dear Dooyoo, I?ve been writing on Dooyoo for over 2 and a half years now and have seen the slow demise of what was once a great online institution. I can remember waking up and logging on at 7.15am to see a thriving new opinions board with folks attracting 20 odd reads in between posting early doors and clambering back from a shower before going to work. One
                              of my fondest memories is of swapping the occasional ?Good morning? with other writers in their thread as you were one of the first to read their latest piece. For those who did become established on the site, a read count of 50 and upwards wasn?t uncommon and, of course, with so many more opinions being posted, more crowns were available to more writers. Forgive the name dropping but certain writers did more too establish this site as a hotbed of debate than most and included the controversial SidneyGee, Scotgirl, King_Herrod and many others who you came to know and respect when logging on to the site. Of course, others have come along to take their place but it?s simply not the same and the impact is significantly less than these fine writers achieved without resorting to simply undermining the site with silly conspiracy theories and the like. From past experience, I have submitted my views directly to Dooyoo only too be ignored along with others who have made similar efforts. In a consumer driven industry, this is astoundingly bad form. I work in one of the most unpopular industries there is and am constantly at the beck and call of customers who expect more and more all the time and find myself more and more immersed in ever increasing government legislation supposedly designed to protect the consumer. Complaints are becoming regulated to the point where if a customer sneezes on my premises, I have to fill in a 1000 word report on the reasons why and the possible implications for an ex-gratia payment. So for you to carry on dismissing the views of so many of your members with apparent contempt is lamentable and does not bode well for the future (but then you know that). The Aurora upgrade was a watershed for Dooyoo. What was heralded as the vision of the future quickly turned into an online turkey with writer after writer slating the changes. Then
                              again, the site became completely unworkable so it?s hardly a surprise. Just about the only thing that kept the site afloat was the lovely Katie?s ongoing dialogue with the members even to the point where she would post on both Dooyoo, Tooyoo and other forums in an attempt to placate and inform the writers. On a personal note, I always found Katie a delight to communicate with and as forthcoming as she could be about Dooyoo and it?s future. As I mentioned only recently, her only comment as to the long-term nature of Dooyoo was that it appeared on the business plan for 2004 and that was all she would say. When she moved on early this year, I decided to head for the exit myself as I assumed the game was up for dear old Dooyoo. There are still aspects of Dooyoo that attract writers. Whilst a certain number question the allocation of crowns, this system beats the ethereal and inherently unfair awarding of diamonds on your rival site ? Ciao ? hands down. More writers are rewarded and it IS possible to see the standard required to win an award. Ironically, the lack of community seems something of a haven for many who have found the going on Ciao intolerable although I can?t say that I?ve encountered this myself but then I?m not really that prominent in the activities outside of opinionating, mainly due to time constraints. I?ve always felt that the standards of opinions on Dooyoo was higher than that of Ciao but I?m not so sure now with the small volumes of new work posted daily when comparing the 2 sites. The threads make for an interactive exchange for those that leave comments about your opinion and it can be an enjoyable experience keeping all the posts and replies in one place rather than having to go to a private gb to make a point a la Ciao. So if you were to listen what can we do?  Obvious bu
                              t simple, fix the capital letters problem issue that has blighted many a member?s piece of work. Charlie_Consumer has arrived at a simple fix but, again, this reflects poorly that a member has to do this when a professional, money-making enterprise can?t come up with something several months down the track.  Introduce long overdue guestbooks or officially recognise the efforts of IloveJackDaniels and his guestbooks at Tooyoo. There is a clear link between opinions and community and this relationship is exploited at Ciao making it a significant competitive advantage over the perceived ?library? nature of Dooyoo.  Revamp the search facility so that consumers can actually find what they are looking for!  Speed the connection up and drop some of the adverts that slow the reader down to a crawl when trying to use the site. I wonder just how many of those pop-ups actually get clicked as opposed to a loud "tut" and a whack on the delete button.  Find a way of adding suggestions more quickly. Maybe this might involve volunteers from the site but anything is better than the apparent cyber-paper mountain that probably surrounds Nathalie every day!  Take on board all of the other constructive suggestions from other writers who have taken the time to consider their thoughts on this subject. Time is money and not just for Dooyoo but for many of the folks that use their personal time to participate in your endeavour and possibly purchase from your links. Thank you for reading, Paul (Marandina) The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any
                              is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site. Reply received: From: "dooyooteam.co.uk" View Contact Details To: dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk Subject: The dooyoo Feedback Challenge Date: Tue, 27 Jul 2004 13:42:19 +0100 Dear dooyoo users, Thank you very much for your feedback. We have read your opinions on The Duke's dooyoo feedback challenge with great interest. One of our main focus is the users and the community. They are very important to us. I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to make its performance better, faster and more stable. The search engine will also be much improved with the help of these implementations. We hope to implement email replies to product suggestions shortly. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We think it is also a good idea to put the work-arounds up on the community page. Could one of you (maybe Jill as you suggested the idea) send all the links to us in one email so we can have all the important links together? Thank you very much for your suggestions, Your dooyoo team, Nathalie

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                                26.07.2004 21:00
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                                • "Poor search engine"

                                Being a relatively new member of Dooyoo I thought I would share my views on what I see to be the good and bad of the site. Lets start of with the good things: For me the most positive aspect of the site is the reward system. The dooyoo miles system is generous compared to many other review sites and the anonymous Crown nominations work excellently in my humble opinion. It is obvious to see that high standard reviews are receiving crowns and the amount available seems enough to reward the crownworthy while not being too numerous to make it too easy. The write a first review and win 3500 miles is a good incentive too for new or unwritten topics. The site is also relatively easy to navigate as a consumer with the category browser being simple enough, registration as a reviewer is also easy in this respect. The category guides also seem useful and it is clear to see whom they are and what there role is on site. I have yet to encounter an unhelpful guide or member and comments appear to be largely constructive. Writing a review is straightforward and the boxes to complete help newer members to understand what is required. The option of a short review for those with short, sharp opinions is also a good one for both reviewer and consumer. Speakers corner is a great idea which should be encouraged and expanded upon as it allows members to hone their reviewing skills and express themselves on site. Right, now for the negatives: The main failing of the site is the lack of members. Surely a site with such good and consistent rewards should have a massive membership? Perhaps it is due to sheer lack of advertising (I came across this site via word of mouth and have not seen the site advertised elsewhere) or perhaps for the reasons below but even established members do not appear to receive much more than thirty rates. The search engine simply does not work most of the time. Whether it
                                be searching for a member or product there is often a product user not found message even if you have navigated to the item/person before via other methods and as such no they/it exists. Many members and I presume consumers also navigate to products via google as this is the only way to find them.effectively and this is not ideal. The site seems to run ridiculously slow most of the time also and is sporadic to say the least in its access. Considering the lack of images and general lack of exciting site design you would expect fast and efficient access compared to its counterparts. Instead what you get is a site that loads from page to page very slowly and often doesn't let you access reviews or even log in (I am on broadband I might add). Perhaps this is due to the huge amounts of fancy pop up ads on site that obstruct many a review while reading it. So, all in all Dooyoo is a good site that could be great. The members are friendly and helpful, reviews are of a high standard and the rewards are good and fair. However, annoying site bugs and lack of members stop a good site being a leader in its field. Update ****** A positive response from dooyoo. Dear dooyoo users, Thank you very much for your feedback. We have read your opinions on The Duke's dooyoo feedback challenge with great interest. One of our main focus is the users and the community. They are very important to us. I hope you will understand if we reply to all your comments in one email. We have tried to collect them all together and will try to reply to them here. We are aware that the site is slow from time to time. We are currently working on the technical side of the platform to make its performance better, faster and more stable. The search engine will also be much improved with the help of these implementations. We hope to implement email replies to product s
                                uggestions shortly. The product suggestions will also be uploaded to the site much more regularly. We think it is also a good idea to put the work-arounds up on the community page. Could one of you (maybe Jill as you suggested the idea) send all the links to us in one email so we can have all the important links together? Thank you very much for your suggestions, Your dooyoo team, Nathalie Sounds good lets hope it happens.

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                                  25.07.2004 20:10
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                                  ********** TheDuke says: This isn't really a challenge, although more of helping hand for Dooyoo to understand the members and hopefully, in return, a chance of a better understanding of Dooyoo for us. This is how it works: You write an open letter to Dooyoo giving them your feedback on the site as well as any suggestions you may have for taking the site forward addressing any concerns you might have etc. The important thing is the feedback, so include as much or as little as you feel is appropriate to yourself. Don't worry if someone has mentioned a point that you want to raise ? it's also important that Dooyoo see how many people have praise, concerns or suggestions about aspects of the site. Then you do three things: first, you post your "opinion" on Dooyoo (the category is listed below) and include some blurb in it which I'll post below. Second (and this is the important bit) you email your opinion off to Dooyoo directly via the dooyooteam@dooyoo.co.uk address so that they can read it. Third, if (and the 'if' must be stressed here) or when you get a reply, then you post their reply onto the end of your letter thus giving a complete picture of your suggestions and concerns and how Dooyoo views them. Obviously, the blurb bit is important as people don't like you quoting their emails, so if a certain piece of text is included in the opinion, then they'll know what people's intentions are. ********** Dear Dooyoo, I'm a Dooyoo Dinosaur. I've been here since Pol Pot's Year Zero. I was here when writing ten, one paragraph opinions each day was the norm. I was here when there was no such thing as a crown. I was here when you didn't have Community Guides but you did have Dooyoo Gurus. I was here wh
                                  en we all started trying and we were getting over a hundred reads for our opinions. I was here when Aurora turned into a disaster and when you sacked most of your staff. I'm still here. Some would say that I'm a glutton for punishment! There are lots of good things about your site: there are good things if I look at it without reference to Ciao, your UK competitor, and there are good things when I compare it with Ciao. Here, I have a forum that I can use to earn a small piece of pin money, where I can give information about products and services I have used and where I can gain information about products and services I might wish to use. It's all a great idea. It's what the internet *should* be all about. Here, I can give and receive honest information, untainted by marketing speak. The site is democratic: it doesn't tell me what I can or can't say (within reason) and anyone is free to contribute. I like that. Your competitor, Ciao, has an unpleasantly competitive set up. You do not have this. Its reward system is geared to a very narrow view of what constitutes desirable content. Yours is not. The bulk of Ciao's reward money goes to a very few members. Yours is spread more fairly. Ciao's atmosphere is often tense and uptight and the site feels cliquey. Yours is not; it is laid back, relaxed, more artsy, if you like. If it were not for some very silly, very amateur problems, I would far prefer Dooyoo to Ciao. Aurora - your two-year-old "redesign" was a disaster. I know it. You know it. Everyone knows it. The VC guys knew it, cos they sacked half your staff. We now have a situation where opinions appear in a format without capital letters and with seemingly random bolding. It looks dreadful! We have a s
                                  ite crippled by navigation impossible to er... navigate. Pages are up to 800kb in size, making them ridiculously slow to load. The site search facility is bolyxed. Because you don't have enough staff to cope, you have decided to suspend product suggestions in several categories and to upload bought-in databases instead. Other suggestions wait months before they are implemented. This is not working. Members cannot write about current products because they do not exist on site, or because they cannot find them via the bolyxed search facility. Your competitor, Ciao, sees submissions at a rate of over 200 each day. Your submissions run at about 200 per week. This is not healthy for your revenue and it is dispiriting for your members. While I would like to see my opinions get read by members 100 times instead of the current 40, I realise that you probably couldn't afford to pay me this any more. I'm not too fussed about getting more reads. However, surely YOU are fussed about getting more submissions. Aren't you? I realise too, that you're skint. You have no tech staff to speak of - they were all sacked two years ago, weren't they? So it doesn't matter what I suggest here - if it costs money, you ain't gonna do it. Here, for what it's worth, are my two paltry ideas for what might stimulate submissions without costing you any money... * Get to grips with product suggestions. Currently, you are trying to encourage submissions for empty categories by offering 20 prizes of £3.50 per month in various categories. Scrub this, it is pointless. If you aren't accepting suggestions and members can't find your products by your useless search facility, they aren't going to write enough new opinions to make it worth it. Use that £70 per month to pay someone for adding member suggestions. £70 isn't much
                                  , I know, but I can guarantee you would find an existing member who would do it from home at minimum wage. Make the admin suggestion tool available to someone - I know you can do this, because you offered this to an ex-member of staff sacked during the Aurora debacle. £70 would represent 14-15 hours per month of adding product suggestions. This would stimulate MORE opinions to be submitted than your current, pointless competition. * Sort out the community page! If you don't have the resources to correct your problems, at least use the community page not to advertise pointless competitions, but to inform members of the various workarounds produced by kindhearted members. Put the link to Charlie Consumer's Capital Punishment solution there. Put the link to the Tooyoo Guestbook facility there so that members get chatting and the site becomes more "sticky". Explain there how to do a domain search via Google, so that people can actually find - AND WRITE ABOUT! - products that exist on your site. Better still, put a Google search box there! Advertise the Opinionators forum there, too, so that people stay interactive. These are two very simple things. They would not cost you any money, yet I believe that they would really help stimulate a greater number of submissions, which let's face it is surely what you want. Withdraw one pointless competition and replace it with including items that people actually want to write (and read) about. Rejuvenate your community page so that it gives information about how members can tackle your ongoing usability problems. It's not 'ard. It is, surely, a win-win situation. For the life of me, I cannot see why you have not done these things already. Thanks for reading. (!) Let me know what
                                  you think. Jill The above was sent as part of the Dooyoo Members' Feedback Initiative. The content is intended to provide constructive criticism for taking the site forward from the member's point of view, and has been posted to the site as an opinion. Your reply, if any is received, will be posted into the end of the opinion giving members a better idea of the Dooyoo and the site.

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