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    Posted February 5, 2014 by
    Farmersburg, Indiana
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Sound off

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    iReporters Sound Off to Team iReport


    With  2014 only a month in, members of the iReport community were asked to  share their thoughts, ideas and suggestions for Team iReport. The  request was first made to iReporters who are members of a Facebook group  exclusive to iReporters and former iReporters. The request for input  was next put to the entire iReport community (The Community Speaks - Well, the Community Should LOL).

    The  overarching subject centered around communication. Members expressed  the need for better and more frequent communication between the Team and  iReporters. There came across a frustration by many in the community  that the Team was not responsive or did not do an adequate job of  addressing questions, concerns and issues raised by individuals or  several iReporters collectively.

    The  suggestions which came from the comments on the iReport asking  community members to speak out and from the Facebook group expressed  pessimism that the Team would be responsive to what the community had to  say.

    Here is a synopsis of the top suggestions, which as you can see fall under the communication mantle:

    1.  Bring back the old round table format which used the iReport blog's  chat/comment feature allowing iReporters to directly address the Team  and the Team to directly respond to the community. Though the system is  awkward and slow, iReporters who commented on this suggestion expressed  little to no love for using Google Hangout.

    The  community much prefers the more direct give-and-take of the previous  format. Having the round table once a week or month is what the  community is asking the Team to do.

    2.  Better explanation and reason provided for what is and isn't acceptable  on iReport both in reports and in comments. The community comments  stated it was difficult to determine why an iReport would be pulled with  no notice and no apparent reason to later be put back after a Team  member was contacted.

    What is it that triggers moderators to pull an iReport?

    Same  goes for comments which seem to disappear and reappear for no reason  and with no explanation. The Terms of Service do not seem to spell out  what has been happening with iReports and comments.

    A  round table on this issue with detailed explanation is needed. Also  when an iReport is pulled or comments deleted an explanatory email or  private message should be sent.

    3.  A need exists for a better "Explore" function. Instead of lumping all  new iReports together, a drop bar or new tabs which allows readers to  jump directly to a subject of interest.

    An  example would be a link to all political iReports or all breaking news  iReports or all photo-only iReports or all travel iReports or all  health-related iReports. This way people could go directly to the topic  or category of interest rather than having to wade through a sea of  irrelevant to the community member's interest.

    4.  When a Team member sends out an email for more information before  vetting an iReport, it has been suggested that the iReporter is notified  the response has been received. There has seemed to be more and more  time between when an iReporter responds and the vet occurs if at all.

    When  the vet does not happen, there is no reason given as to why. Sometimes  iReporters have pointed out the need to respond more than once before  the vet occurs several hours later. This goes back to the need for the  Team to step up its communication with iReporters.

    As  you can see the top suggestions all deal with communication. Several  noted that in years past the Team seemed to be more connected to the  community, but have become more distant in recent months.

    Here are excerpts from the comments made by the community:

    I  think the "iReport Team" could take a closer look at some of the  reports posted. Some I feel are overlooked. I have heard on a few  occasions that they have and follow favorites. What does an iReporter  have to do in order to be followed? What is it that they actually look  for to be vetted? There are many fine iReporters here...
    OK, I'll suggest it. Nobody laugh. Although, I can't help it. Help  enforce civil debate. I will happily put snarky-ness on hold; however,  there must be uniform application. I won't be able to hold my tongue if I  keep getting snide remarks. The body of the iReport should not be  generally insulting to any demographic. ****
    I have been involved in  the roundtable discussions before. Rarely has anything become of it.  Discouraged? Yes I am. I actually miss the "good old days" went it was  pretty much open season on all.
    iReport is like a  newspaper( sort of) There are sections for most all interest's. Headline  New's, Breaking News, sports, politics, food, entertainment, human  interest, photography, travel, world, USA and local, even the funnies.  It takes everything. I participated in most round tables before the big  change. It had it's draw backs but I did see changes made. Now the  community is so far fetched from team ireport, seems they are all but  untouchable. Out of millions of ireporters there are but a few of us  that really give a rats ass. One thing that bother' me is how long  assignments stay up, especially open assignments.It get's old and  boring. I am seeing a lot of spam, promotions for business, a lot of  posts with few or 0 views and no comments. It is sort of like shoveling  through all the ads to get to a story of some kind.
    Maybe  break up iReports into sections? A menu bar with all the selections on  it. On the iReport home page. "I think I'll see what's going on in  gardening."
    Mostly bring back the old Roundtable!
    I'd like a tool to access my comments between certain dates. I've got some real winners I would like to share.
    I don't use the "report" button very much......but I think when you  report there should be a required comment field......especially when it  is an oops I didn't mean to hit it. But also to point out the reason.
    They should also reenergize their programs to foster the ireport community......seems they have lost steam and maybe focus.
    I would like to have more boxes to put in photos rather than the 10 that is given say about 15 or 20.
    Transform the iReport main page to prominently show a menu of iReport  sections. IReporters will only be able to tag an iReport for one  section. This would make the site resemble a newspaper. The front page  would be what everyone sees and they would need to go through a gateway  for any other section desired. We could have sports, opinion, religion,  science, news, gardening and a host of other options. I want the  opinion, with sauce, section where no one under 18 is allowed. The rules  would be the same as 2008. I want to call it the fight club. Currently,  we can do similar by configuring the front portal ourselves by  selecting groups. I want it automatic. A new rule should be added where  those who intentionally post iReports in sections to cause trouble will  be warned then booted. Except the fight club where such things belong.  LOL
    I would like to see assignments changed more often,  Sometimes the open assignments are long past the news and never  mentioned again. Would love to see a weekend assignment for fun of or  bring back 'off beat', for those of us that like the photography part of  ireport.

    Should be something for all and easy accessible.

    Yes please bring back our old Roundtable on ireport blog.
    I suggested a recurring topic of book reviews and got the standard " we  will look into that " but nothing ever occurred with it.
    I would like to see this 'random' flagging brought to an end for the sake of the entire community.
    I think the moderators have been inordinately tolerant. They only  remove comments deemed inappropriate. It is only the degree of  inappropriateness that is in question.
    Asking the moderators to deal with those who flag comments for no good reason is one of my suggestions.
    A good debate is welcome, attacking someone's integrity in any way is  not permitted from anyone or any party, race, religion gender or sexual  preference.
    I'd like to see a bit more of decent, honest,  open, debate on issues. For example, I do enjoy discussing the topics of  the day. I also really enjoy the photography iReports.

    Divide  iReports into sections, or at least have a better way to access those  sections (assignments) you do currently have rather than having to  search for them. A simple drop down box may be helpful.
    I  would like to seem them vet reports from a larger variety of  I-Reporters. Out of all of us regulars, only a few regularly get vetted,  video or no.

    I would like to see better assignments: I have little to contribute to most of them.
    I have to agree with the drop down box that was suggested.

    Instead of, or in addition to, the latesy, on Cnn, most commented...and so on.

    There should be topics:

    Political | Health | On the Front Page | Photo | Humor

    And have the assignments linked to those topics.

    The search engine on this site...is lousy.

    I also believe that if they do not attract more new comers....that want  to participate in the discussion ireports....this place will die off.

    In the end it will be mostly uploading pictures, or breaking news images and videos.
    I would like to suggest that when a questionnaire is sent out to us,  filled out and returned to the staff member that sent it out, that they  would do us a professional courtesy by acknowledging they received that  filled out questionnaire.
    Those of us that have been here  for a while...know exactly where others stand on just about any  topic...there is not point in participating if you do not bring new  reporters and ideas to the debate.

    From the Cornfield, there you have what the community thinks.

    Will Team iReport respond?

    Will Team iReport implement any of the suggestions and ideas?

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