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New Site Features | Changelog

By Christopher Lin on December 15th 2014

The following resource documents the changes made to the SLR Lounge Website. This will be continually updated so that you can see what’s new on our site. We are working hard on improving our community by fixing website bugs, refining existing features, adding new features, and developing community interaction. If you have any suggestions, please submit your ideas via the question mark in the top menu.

Latest Changes


2014/12/15 – Added Biweekly Prize for Most Helpful Community Member within Constructive Critique

To reward our helpful community members within our construct critique section, we’ve added bi-weekly prizes for top point earners for that two week period. Every two weeks, the count resets and the new period begins. Each time a new period begins, a new prize is announced, (though some periods might feature the same prize as the previous period). The number of up-votes is the primary factor for determining the winner, so quality of critique submissions matters more than quantity of critique submissions. If you’re a member of our community, you’re already eligible to play! Participate here:

2014/11/14 – Added Bookmark Feature

Added ability to “save” articles. These articles appear in a community member’s “bookmarks.” This feature allows community members to save their favorite articles for later reference.

Left - Community Member Saves Articles: Right - Community Member Accesses Saved Articles with Bookmark

Left – Community Member Saves Articles: Right – Community Member Accesses Saved Articles with Bookmark

2014/10/30 – Introduced New Store Layout

The SLR Lounge Store got a makeover to feature larger images with an emphasis on usability and client experience.

2014/10/08 – Added Constructive Critique Section

Constructive Critique section created to allow community members to improve photography skills by giving and receiving critique on their images. Critiques are only open for a limited window so a winning critic can be crowned. The gavel indicates the number of critiques submitted for a particular image. Image Submitter indicates the limitations and challenges faced while creating the image. Critiques submitted are voted up or down; and the critic with the highest net positive votes wins the prestigious title of top critic. Points are distributed based on the number of critiques given. Points pool increases with the number of critiques submitted; and distribution occurs once time remaining expires. The “points available” indicates the number of points available for distribution to top 5 critics.

2014/08/25 – Added Photo Contests Section

Photo Contests section created to give community members a place to showcase work and win prizes. Participants are allowed to submit one entry per contest. Community members are allowed to vote on multiple images. The number of votes influences the final determination of a single winner. Prizes are sponsored by retailers. Retailers are responsible for delivering the final prize to the winner.

2014/07/28 – SLR Lounge Lightroom Preset Recipes Section Created

Recipes section created for the thousands of SLR Lounge Lightroom Preset community members to share “mixologies,” our term for unique combinations of presets. Community members can add Lightroom recipes to share and compare with others. Community members give the recipe a title, upload an original photo (before the recipe is applied), and upload the same photo after an effect is applied.

2014/06/15 – Game System Created

The initial system included the following features:

  • The Experience Bar – Tracks your progress and activity in the community. Community members can read, comment, reply and participate to gain points and unlock new features.
  • The Leaderboards – Shows community members activity and standing in the SLR Lounge community
  • The Notification Center – Gives updates based on subscriptions and interactions within the community
  • Mark as Read and Quizzes – Mark articles read and take quizzes to track learning and earn points
  • Subscribe to comments – Receive notifications when comment threads being followed are updated
  • Profile Pictures – Personalize profile and gain points by adding profile and cover photos
  • Stat Center – Shows accumulated points and an overview of a community member’s community activity
  • Portfolio – community members showcase best work, gain levels to unlock new slots.
  • Milestones – Earned by completing actions such as reading an article or also by completing your profile. Milestones can only be earned once
  • Badges – Achieved by completing actions. They differ from milestones in the sense that each badge can be earned multiple times. An example would be first to read an article badge
  • Camera Bag – Allows community members to display items in their camera bag.
  • Subscribe – Receive notifications and emails whenever there are updates within a particular topic
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Co-Founder of SLR Lounge and Photographer with Lin and Jirsa Photography, I’m based in Southern California but you can find me traveling the world. Click here to connect on Google +

Q&A Discussions

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  1. John Cavan

    I’m coming back to my point on this one… I’ve been watching a recent meteoric rise of a member who has now managed to reach level 10 since January 15th. How did he do it? Comments like “great” or ” good” littered across the articles on the site. I appreciate that site traffic is important, but really? What is it that you really want on this site? I’m sorry, but that form of commentary for the sake of points is useless.

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  2. Deborah Parrish

    Seems like a lot of fun!

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  3. John Cavan

    I’m all for gamification of sites, I moderate two Stack Exchange sites including the Photography one, so I’m pretty familiar with concepts of it. I think SLR Lounge doing this as a means of participation is a really good idea, but I think the current scoring mechanism encourages a lot of, well, useless commentary and voting. I see a lot of comments like “that looks interesting” or “that’s a cool idea” and I’m not sure that is really very useful to the site when it’s all said and done because they’re almost robotic and not really that indicative of engagement.

    If I might suggest, I think you should consider the idea of points for getting likes/votes on your comments rather than points for making them or voting on them. Look at badges and other “rewards” for participation as a voter, or even just make it a threshold change. With that, I think, you would encourage much more considered commentary that has some meaningful substance to it.

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    • Gareth Roughley

      I think you make a fair point, it’s easy to provide uninspired support for an article as I have done in the past. And whilst this may be useful to the author to know that what they have put together is well received it doesn’t necessarily inspire thoughtful discussion.

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    • adam sanford

      The best discussions on this site occur when the writer of the article ‘stays after class’ and periodically makes comments after the readers have piped up with their thoughts (checking in every so often).

      The writers know when a discussion is getting petty, fanboyish, or inflammatory — and they also know when it’s really clicking in a positive way. Perhaps you guys should allow SLRL’s writers to assign points based not simply on the likes (as that can be gamed as well), but on the strength of the comments of the discussion thread.

      For instance: I asked a question about Sony’s new mirrorless rig with IBIS, and I asked how IBIS worked. A few folks went out of their way to write great answers or point me to where I could find them. Those folks should be rewarded.

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    • adam sanford

      Also, consider *not publishing* people’s levels. Continue to give higher leveled people access to cool stuff, but just don’t publish it to others.

      In a weird analogy, MMO-gaming like World of Warcraft, people only grind out accomplishments if they can ‘e-peen’ about it, i.e. show off what they get for doing all that work. In places like that, you have a thriving ecosystem of troglodytes grinding out goals and acting like brats about it. I’m sure this site would love that sort of allegiance of its readers, but it engenders frantic, poorly thought out community interaction.

      I *love* the discussions on this site because it isn’t a Disqus-comment hell like other photography sites. People actually want to help each other here, and that should be rewarded. So I think if you take away the public visibility of other folks’ levels, I’m guessing people will game the system less and stop speed-liking every story and dropping “Cool!” on every discussion thread.

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    • Daniel Thullen

      Adam’s comments from several weeks ago are spot on!

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  4. Gareth Roughley

    Bookmarking articles will save me keeping a gazillion windows open in my browser

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  5. Ben Perrin

    You guys have done a great job.

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  6. adam sanford

    Agree. Editing comments would be massive.

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  7. Nick Viton

    Can I edit or delete comments?

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