Feature Round-up: “Quick Preview,” Clips!!!, More Scrubbing

Greetings, Videoboxers!

Quick Preview Back From the Dead

Resurrected!

First off in our feature round-up, I want to point out — in case you haven’t already noticed — that we have resurrected “Quick Preview” on the DVD and Original Custom Clip pages. We may add the new scrubbing UI to those pages as well, but currently we are not planning to use that as a replacement for the Quick Preview or to do away with the Quick Preview completely. I’m hopeful that this news is making a few people out there happy. :-)

Scrubbing Everywhere

And speaking of the scrubbing UI, with today’s release we have rolled it out to pretty much every scene thumbnail sitewide — with the exception of the aforementioned DVD and Custom Clip pages, and the smaller “recently viewed” thumbnails. Please note, you can still avoid hitting the Flash player page, even after scrubbing a scene’s thumbnail, if you click the scene title link below that thumbnail. You can also right-click on the thumb to open a new tab or window and start the scene there, or right-click the link to open the Original Custom Clip page in a new tab or window.

Clips Continue To Grow Up

The Clips section is still in Beta mode, but it’s starting to come into its own with this release. We have made the 6 most recently-created clips visible on the member home page, we’ve added Clips Quick Links in the “Quick Links” section at the upper right of that page (1 click to your clip collection!), and the Clips page itself can now be sorted by name, date or popularity. Clips can also be filtered by a few different date ranges.

And, yes, the best this feature has to offer is still to come… I can’t wait to get the functionality we are currently working on out to you all, ’cause it’s gonna be cool. BTW, I don’t even know how much great content I’ve discovered since the clip creation feature went live, so please keep up the good work with those! Let’s see whose clips start showing up on the front page!

The final cool thing I want to share is in the clip creation form. On top of all the other Clips goodness, we have added “suggested tags” that appear as you type a tag into the “tags” field. The tags you will be offered are the same ones that appear on the Clips main page at the left, so hopefully it will be quick and easy for you to add clips to a popular category. In case you haven’t used this type of feature on other sites, here’s a quick rundown:

1. Once you’ve opened up the form to add your clip, click in the “tags” field and begin to type.

If the letters you type match tags in the main tags list, those tags will appear in a suggestions list immediately below the field. As you continue to type, tags that do not match automatically disappear from the suggestions list.

2. Use your “down arrow” and “up arrow” keys to move through the list, or run your mouse cursor over it. Once the tag you want is highlighted, hit the “Enter” key or click on the tag and the phrase you began typing is completed. A comma and a space are automatically added, and you can type your next tag or click the “Save” button to save your clip.

3. If none of the suggestions match your desired tag, ignore the suggestions and enter whatever you like.

As always, comments about any or all of the above are welcome and encouraged.

Enjoy,

Bob

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31 Responses to “Feature Round-up: “Quick Preview,” Clips!!!, More Scrubbing”

  1. Strangepork Says:

    Thank you so much for the return of Quick Preview! :D

    A question about the tags on clips: What determines what tags appear on the tag column of the main clip page? Is it based on how frequently they are used, or some other criteria? I’ve seen clips with some cool tags that I don’t see on the main clips page, yet some of the tags on the main clips page seem like they may only be meaningful to the person who created them, and other tags are duplicated with similar words or spellings. I like the idea of suggested tags, but haven’t had a chance to see it in action yet. Hopefully it’ll help to standardize the tagging a bit, but of course the ability to make up new tags based on unique properties of a scene is what makes the clips feature so cool. I’m guessing the tags are currently pretty much unmoderated. I’m sure nobody there wants the job of having to check all the tags for accuracy, but maybe you could add some way of reporting duplicate tags – for instance if enough people go to “big-tits” and “BigBreasts” and “busty” and flag them all as duplicates of “BigBoobs” then all of those tags will be combined into one, and any future tagging of any of those would automatically re-tag it. Just an idea… unless somebody wants to argue that boobs, breasts, and tits are not entirely identical in meaning.

  2. Strangepork Says:

    A couple more things:
    - Playback of clips right now seems to be stopping at the 0:30 mark, regardless of how long the actual clip is. Tried with a few different clips, and none played all the way through.
    - When viewing a clip, clicking on a tag looks for videos with that same tag within my own clips list, instead of the master list.

  3. Howardz Says:

    Sweet new features!
    Any eta on joining clips together so I can do a Sasha Grey cumshot collection? When that is possible it will take off big time.

  4. stlguy76 Says:

    First off, just let me compliment you and the tech staff for all these changes. You are definitely making the best porn site in the world better, and you can’t be thanked enough.

    My one question is about the appearance of the “home page,” the one we first see when logging into VB. I really like the clips being put up there, but I wonder if there is a way to move them down, maybe below the “recently added” videos. Better yet, is there a way we could personalize our own opening page, and maybe rearrange modules here or there for the look we individually like best? It isn’t a huge point, really more of a look/feel cosmetic thing, and making a personalized possibility might be a bit too complicated for what you guys are aiming at. But I didn’t figure it would hurt to ask, and maybe see what other users think.

    Once again, thanks for all the awesome stuff you’ve got going on to improve VB!

  5. rj Says:

    finally thank you

  6. Bob Says:

    Hi All, thanks for your feedback and participation. Here are some responses:

    Strangepork: As of this release we changed which tags get shown on the left column. Now it is showing all of your personal tags, plus the top 100 tags sitewide for VB-only content, and the top tags for each channel (Evil Angel & Vivid). We take that combined group of tags and alphabetize it. With the next release, though, the plan is to limit the total list to 100 tags — your tags, plus the top tags from all channels until that adds up to 100, then alphabetized.

    Yeah, we definitely want to keep things pretty open as far as what you can type, at least for now, so there’s no moderation in place. We are having an ongoing conversation about normalizing the tags, at least on the back end, but that will be part of integrating the tags into the site’s search, and we’re not there yet.

    As far as your 2 reported bugs go, I haven’t been able to reproduce the first one. Can you submit it via this form, and include the URL of the page where it happens? That form gives us lots of extra debugging info along with your comment.

    On the 2nd issue, if you are watching a clip and you click a tag in the RHE, that RHE has listed only the clips in your “My Clips” library, so it will only search your library for that tag. Sounds like you wanted it to behave differently?

    Howardz: I can’t give you an ETA just yet (I like to under-promise and over-deliver), but we are laying the groundwork for playlists and mash-ups even as I type this. Your Sasha Grey cumshot collection is within your grasp, and then saved to my clip library, in the near future. :-)

    stlguy76: You’re welcome. We appreciate the feedback! And thanks for the input about the home page. Our plates are so full right now that we’re unlikely to create a way for users to personalize the home page anytime soon, but it does help to hear how you and others feel about the addition of Latest Clips there. We’re keeping an eye on that, and seeing what the overall sentiment about it is.

    rj: I knew you were gonna like this release. :P

  7. Gensaint7 Says:

    Let me begin by saying that this site continues to improve and is, without question, the best porn site on the net. Happy returns to the quick preview, thank you for bringing that back to us. All of the new improvements have been truly impressive and it is equally impressive that you ave been able to retain the old favorites. It is a great feat keeping everyone happy and you have come through in spades.

    That all being said there is till an issue with the clips stopping at :30. I am not worried about it, I can go to the scene and make my own clips until that is fixed.

    I have been impressed at the progress of the site since I first joined as Climax Corner and it keeps getting better every time I login. Kudos VB!

  8. Strangepork Says:

    I just reported the 30 second issue through the link provided. Hopefully you can work it out soon. It seemed to just start with the recent update.

    Here’s the steps to check out the other issue I mentioned: Go to the Clips page from the link on the main page. Click on any thumbnail to view a clip. Then, click on one of the tags for that clip, listed below the player (not on the RHE). It will take you to the My Clips page. I would have instead expected it to take me to a list of all clips with that tag. In the example I just tried, I clicked on a clip with a tag that I hadn’t used on any of my own clips, clicking that tag from the player took me to a My Clips page with 0 clips.

  9. Bob Says:

    Thanks, Gensaint7 and Strangepork (I saw your form submission come in, SP). We will look into these issues and report back when we have some news.

  10. Bobette Says:

    I tend to agree with stlguy76 on the placing of the clips – I like them on the home page, but prefer that they be secondary, not primary, in placement.

  11. Mister Handy Says:

    Let me add a voice to the “I don’t like latest clips at the top of the home page.” In fact, let me be more blunt: I hate the “latest clips at the top of the home page” and really hope you’ll move it lower down.

  12. Scotty B Says:

    Hell yes! I was just telling my wife how disappointed I was that this feature was no longer available. The user interface and content of this site, coupled with the price, makes this BY FAR the best site I have ever subscribed to.

    I’m going to go ahead and agree with a few others though that the clips not be at the top of the home page. I think the “NEW” sign next to the link is enough to get attention, no need to force feed it to us. (Kudos though on the feature!)

  13. anon Says:

    Yeah, putting clips above DVD updates is a bit strange from a design perspective… you’re privileging user content (in a sense) over the reason most of us keep coming back: the prodigious high-quality updates.

    Also, I’ve seen a number of bugs creep into this release (like clicking on the second page of alison’s clips doesn’t work… it keeps taking you back to the first page). Sounds like the most helpful way to report bugs is via that form (although it will necessarily out my user information to you… but there’s not much point in debugging anonymous trouble tickets!).

  14. anonymous Says:

    I don’t like the latest clips being at the top of the homepage at all. I’m not really interested in them at all, but I wouldn’t be bothered by them if they were at a lower part of the page.

  15. anon Says:

    Give option to turn clips OFF!

  16. smoothcriminal Says:

    I agree with anon – the clips are a side feature – not something I want to see on log in.

  17. Bob Says:

    Gensaint7 and Strangepork: we believe we have found the cause of the “30-seconds” clip bug, and will have a fix in place soon. We also agree with you, Strangepork, that clicking the tags below the player should take you to a global tag search rather than a search within your own clips, and that fix should go live with the other one. Thanks again for bringing those to our attention, and I’ll comment here again when those fixes are on the site.

    Everyone else, thanks for weighing in about the home page. I always appreciate getting input from you guys. Mister Handy, and anyone else who has similarly strong feelings about having Latest Clips on the home page, I’m curious to know why you hate it so much, if you don’t mind elaborating.

    anon, you’re right about two things: one, the pagination is broken temporarily, but the fix will be live soon. Now you know we weren’t kidding when we called this feature “Beta”! :-) And two, the form on the “Contact Us” page is indeed the best way to report bugs, as it includes information about which of our servers you’re on and the browser/OS you are using when you submit, which helps us to debug your issue.

  18. deadip Says:

    Personally, I like those Clips moved further down the Page rather right at the very top. I actually would prefer them Clips moved all the way to the Bottom of the Page. Keep the New DVDs First, Recommended DVDs Next, Recently Viewed DVDs, Recently Viewed Scenes, and then those Clips Beta*.

  19. smoothcriminal Says:

    Bob – my reason that the clips on the home page is a bad idea is because most people want to see the new content right away when they log in – not somebody else’s edit mash up of old clips. Then I can look at the clips I want – not someone else’s clips. There are some types of porn I don’t want to see – say fat women – so I don’t want be hit with clips of fat women just becasue somebody else made a clip featuring fat women.

    Why would you think puttng these little homemade clips right on the front page would be a good idea??

  20. Doctorgee Says:

    I am also having a problem with the clips cutting out at the 30 second mark. Win 7 user on IE8, have tried all security options from some to none.

  21. Doctorgee Says:

    Oh, I also agree with the clips being moved somewhere, like to the bottom. Your site need to showcase it’s most primary asset, that being the new releases. That is why I log on every day, and that is why I keep paying for VideoBox. The clips are great, and if you can figure out the 30 second bug I would be happy to browse them, but your number one asset is the new releases. Don’t make your customers scroll down for it.

  22. Dogshouse Says:

    Count me with those who want New Releases to be the first thing on the home page. Not only is that what I’m most interested in, but the clip thumbnails are kinda alarming coming in cold. I’d like a chance to work my way up to a closeup of some massive cock up some chick’s pimply ass!

  23. rj Says:

    I may have missed this if it was already mentioned but can the scrubbing feature be combined with the quick preview feature some how? I believe its called scrubbing.

  24. Captain Dumbass Says:

    Wow..I just wanted to say I’m back to Vbox after a while away amd wow, what an improvement. Not that it was bad before, it wasn’t, but the effort put into these improvements is appreciated. A good sight’s been made even better! Nice job!

  25. Mister Handy Says:

    @Bob – I think SmoothCriminal pretty much covered it better than I could: “I agree with anon – the clips are a side feature – not something I want to see on log in” and “my reason that the clips on the home page is a bad idea is because most people want to see the new content right away when they log in – not somebody else’s edit mash up of old clips.” I don’t know about “most people” but that’s certainly true for me – if I’m logging on quickly, I want to see what’s new, mark it using a favorites list for if it’s something to download later, and get on with my day (or rarely, watch something via the flash player, if I’m away from home and my shared drive but 99% of the time it’s “check quickly during the day, download a while lot overnight later.”)

    It’s possible that the clips may be an interesting way of exploring content on the site, or seeing things shorter that whole scenes… but having to scroll past them (and just the random new ones, not recommendations at that!) every time I log in to see what’s actually new (not just old stuff, excerpted by other users) is NOT a good way to encourage me to check it out.

  26. Bob Says:

    Hey everyone — but especially Gensaint7, Strangepork and anon, who mentioned bugs in the comments above this one: see this post from Jeff. The fixes for a bunch of nasty bugs are now live!

    To everyone who responded regarding the placement of Latest Clips on the home page, thank you for the clarity. I’ll respond in more detail soon, when I have a little more time; just wanted you to know I hear you and I am grateful for your comments.

  27. Mister Handy Says:

    Bob – thanks for reading the feedback and giving it consideration, and for all of your (and the rest of the team’s) hard work in keeping a great site going here. :)

  28. Bob Says:

    So here’s the detail I promised on the placement of “Latest Clips.” We are definitely going to make it less prominent, and restore the prominence of the Newest DVDs, in our next release. Exactly how we’ll do it is still undecided, but we know we won’t set it up so users can hide or show it. That is a great suggestion, and a number of people have offered that up in Support emails as well, but we plan to increase the site’s overall configurability in the near future anyway, so we’ll hold off on a make-your-own homepage feature until that larger effort gets underway.

    The comments we got both in this blog post and via email were a huge factor in our decision to change this. So, please continue to keep the dialog open. We know we won’t make everyone happy all of the time, but we’ll always try to make as many people happy as we can. I especially appreciate comments like the many in this post, where you give me a chance to hear how you react to things and really understand why you do or don’t like them.

    Thanks again for taking the time to make yourselves heard, which gives us the opportunity to serve you better. Together we can make VideoBox the best adult website in the world.

  29. peru1978 Says:

    I just want to say that I’ve been unable to remove clips, that I created, from the clips page. I used to be able to do this by clicking on the creator name under one of my clips, then in the creator clip page I would check the box for the clip I wanted to remove, then click on “remove my name as creator of selected clips” near the top. Now, when I click on the remove link, I am sent to the home page and my clips are unchanged. I have tried this unsuccessfully using Chrome and IE8, on an XP machine and a Vista machine. I started having this problem around the same time as the 30 second bug.
    Aside from that, I am really enjoying the clips feature. One last thing, please give us the ability to choose the screenshot for our clips. Thank you!

  30. smoothcriminal Says:

    Good to see you will be moving the user made clips – and yet another reason is that it gives the site a very “amateurish” look – the box cover art looks much better.

  31. Bob Says:

    peru1978 – that last thing is coming sooner than you might think.

    P.S. If you haven’t already, please submit your bug via this form, which is the best way to report issues to us, as it provides us with extra information for debugging.