Freegle Tech Report 16-04-30

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Freegle Tech Report April 2016
Posts 17089-17209
Members 105


As to be expected most of the interest is now focused on the Direct V3 interface, and the effects of it on our groups, members and on moderation. NO server problems have been reported this month. Events are still being pre approved at source to prevent delayed and missing verifications, causing issues with members.


Q. A member wants to hide her real name on her posts. I tried to hide my name on a test post using the app but it still showed my first name when the post came through. Can someone please help me?
A If you are using modtools it will always show the moderators the member's’ name.
Q. A member has said that she is changing from a to a email address.Can she achieve this email change from the Settings option in FD, or should she create a new account in FD – perhaps after I delete her existing FD account ?
A Yes she can change it in her FD settings.
Q. A member can’t post to my group as she has not received her verification email, and can’t see how to ask for another. What do I do?
Q. We had an email from a Plymouth member who says FD keeps asking for her email address. She keeps adding it but still it asks?
A Send their details to support @ who can verify them for members.
Q. I tried to put up a notice on Freegle that something had been taken but the only options on the website tool was OFFERED and WANTED. The only button that appeared on the email was "i give up" despite three options appearing?
A They are looking at the Posts tab they need to use the MY Posts to find the taken button. The links in the email forwarded did work. ( Some members have links stripped out of email by their email clients, or settings). Just click the correct link if you get a similar query.
Q I put an asterisk at the end of a subject line and it has resulted in distorting the content.
A This was a bug, now fixed but it is not advisable to use asterisks and other symbols in subject lines.

Direct V3

Work has now started in earnest on the user end of Edward’s rewrite of Direct.
We have had a tough discussion about moving away from email towards instant messaging.
In email:

  • You don't know whether someone else is online or has read your message. This leaves us not knowing if they received the email, read it, are going to respond and getting into the too and froing of arranging collection.
  • Chat has become a familiar way to communicate over the last few years, and members can have a discussion, there and then to arrange collection, exchange phone numbers etc..

Freegle will still support emails, but it is felt that chat is probably a more effective way for members to sort out any logistics, and the new format will lean towards encouraging members to use it.
If you want an idea how it will work, you will find on chat rooms for you groups, and the mods of each group will be members, though they won't show up unless they're online.
You can turn the chat on/off on a per group basis in Settings->Group Settings->Global Settings.

This feature may change; you may lose all your chat history, and so on so don’t put stuff you want to keep on it.

Also discussed how members Fbuser email addresses will be replaced, and all members given an email address along the lines of the Trash Nothing members, and what identifier we will use.

Q&ABold text

Q.What will be the replacement for the address when I move a group from Yahoo?
A Suggestions were. Help@ Volunteers@ Group@ Group-help@
There will be a clickable link on the website and emails and replies will be put on modtools for all the group moderators to access.


Admins on the Facebook page can amend or delete events. Please log out of Facebook, use the group shortlink to log into Direct, and use the Facebook button to sign in. This will be simplified when this part is rewritten.

Q. A member had problems adding a link to an event and said he got the message please enter a valid URL I tried with the web link he supplied
A Try
Q. A member has changed her email address leaving with her first and then rejoining the group. She is still getting community events to her former account.
A Unfortunately if a Yahoo member leaves it does not stop the community events automatically as they are on a different system. If you remove her via Modtools it does. Send her email address to support@ who can turn them off.

Mobile App

Various stats on the mobile app are here:
Total downloads are 24,015. The average rating is 4.03 over 66 ratings.
There have been 6 in-app purchases this month.
The Android app is on v0.80 and the Amazon app is on v0.79.
The current iOS app is v0.77; I have submitted v0.80 for review with fixes for the Google, Facebook and Yahoo login methods.
A couple of versions released earlier in the month had bugs, so some may have noticed slight problems.
It is fortunate that we have active moderators on the group using the app extensively and picking up any bugs quickly. If you haven't tried our phone app yet, please do.
New versions of the mobile app are available for Android, Kindle and iOS as listed here:
Version 0.77 of the iOS app requires iOS 8 or later.
Those running iOS 6 or 7 can hopefully still download app version 0.74

ImprovementsBold text

  • Withdraw bug fixed
  • "Mark as read" on new received messages
  • Show FOP on posts
  • Update to new build system and Cordova 5.4.1

Q&ABold text Q. I really like the app, only thing I have found is that it is not always obvious when it is doing something
A This is IOS. The new update has a message.
Q. Why when I withdraw a message like this does it generate a received ?
A It is a bug and will be sorted in the next update.


Nearly all the mod function which can be done at this stage has been completed. Edward has now started on the end user side of his development. We have had a couple of glitches this month, with a reboot or two being necessary, and also some posts coming through with mismatched subject lines.


A quick chart of the estimated weight for a group broken down by month, plus total - for groups on Freegle Direct has been done by Chris:
You can use your "groupid" or "group" name (ie the Yahoo shortname).YOu have the option to give a start and/or end date in the format "YYYY-MM-DD". You can also optionally give a height parameter (in pixels) if you want to make it taller than normal.
The start date defaults to "2011-12-27" if you don't give it, as the first posts seen by FD were on that date.
Here are some example links:
Weights are only recorded for items TAKEN or RECEIVED and not all items have weights.
Eventually these will be added to Modtools.


It has been noticed that Yahoo has been a bit flakier than usual, with posts made showing in pending. Missing posts do usually arrive several hours later or the following day.
Q.I had 11 posts I needed to post taken posts for. They all cleared from FD but I have received 11 failure posts from the postmaster.
Not one made it as far as the board. ‘Your email was not delivered due to a suspected guidelines violation.’
A.This was Yahoo spam detection catching them and there is nothing we can do about it.

Freegle Tech Report
March 2016

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