walkhighlands

Check this board for announcements about new features and content on Walkhighlands

Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Walkhighlands forum now advert-free


Postby Paul Webster » Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:29 pm

You may have spotted the notice at the bottom of the forum, and that the adverts (which were mixed with pages from the site) have all been removed from all the forum pages and walk reports.

The internet is going through a rapid period of change. Revenue from automated adverts has been falling sharply over the last couple of years, even though internet traffic & costs are increasing. This is partly due to changes in online habits (switching to mobile sites and apps), the rise of ad-blocking etc. Almost all advertising growth has gone to Facebook and Google.

We've also seen a much sharper fall since we took the decision to not share user browsing data with Google or other advertising networks. This became possible at the time of the GDPR changes; we decided Walkhighlands would opt-out of any sharing any user data with ad vendors to to better protect your privacy.

The forum has never carried much advertising, and that which we did have was no longer making any worthwhile contribution towards the costs of hosting it. With the adverts gone the forum should now run faster and is completely clean.

Instead we've made it possible for users to set up a monthly direct debit donation to help support the site.

This is entirely optional and completely down to your individual discretion.

There are no charges to use or access the Walkhighlands community. Donors will not receive a different service - your site experience will be the same regardless of whether you are a donor. Basically if you feel that the forum is worth something to you, it gives you a chance to contribute to the costs.

There will still be adverts on the editorial / non-user contributed parts of Walkhighlands; money from these currently subsidizes the forum and will continue to do so. The level of support we receive will influence the way Walkhighlands develops in the future.

Thanks in advance for your support.

My Post (1).jpg
User avatar
Paul Webster
Site Admin
Walker
 
Posts: 5163
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:62   Donalds:39
Sub 2000:113   Hewitts:133
Wainwrights:134   
Joined: Jan 6, 2007
Location: Nr Grantown-on-Spey

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby paulgarb » Wed Nov 14, 2018 6:24 pm

What a heartwarming thing to read and a bleak November evening. I have always been pleased (but slightly guilty) that this formidable resource was provided without charge. Given that I use it regularly it is no hardship to make a regular donation.

Thanks to Walkhighlands for this gesture, for the hours of pleasure I’ve had following the routes and for the quality (and quantity) of the information provided.
paulgarb
Walker
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 15, 2016

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby mynthdd2 » Thu Nov 15, 2018 8:39 pm

I will be happy to pay a reasonable DD.......but also bear in mind the notion of product placement! Ha! I’m now for a kitkat and coffee.....
User avatar
mynthdd2
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 229
Joined: Feb 14, 2013
Location: Newcastle Upon Tyne

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby Alteknacker » Thu Nov 15, 2018 11:27 pm

Yep, I too will make a regular donation. This forum is great value. (mind you, I'm not at all fussed about adverts - do that as long or as much as you like as far as I'm concerned). :D
User avatar
Alteknacker
Scrambler
 
Posts: 2502
Munros:165   Corbetts:28
Hewitts:195
Wainwrights:71   
Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby javietor » Fri Nov 16, 2018 3:31 am

I don't use the forum much, but I find this website second to one to gather information about the Scottish outdoors. All the walks, information, routes, maps, gpx files are invaluable and I want it to carry on like that for a long time. Count with my contribution. :angel:
User avatar
javietor
Walker
 
Posts: 1
Munros:17   Corbetts:5
Grahams:3   Donalds:7
Sub 2000:11   
Joined: Oct 7, 2013
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby gaffr » Sat Nov 17, 2018 12:26 pm

Hello,
Is there any other way of making a contribution?....say via an occasional cheque to make a wee donation for the running of the site. I guess that looking after this Forum now must be almost a full time job just keeping on top of things and the need to have a good knowledge of how the digital world works?
User avatar
gaffr
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1562
Munros:281   Corbetts:203
Grahams:31   Donalds:14
Sub 2000:11   Hewitts:25
Wainwrights:11   
Joined: Oct 25, 2009
Location: Highland.

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby helenw » Sat Nov 17, 2018 3:52 pm

Thanks for all the support and donations - it's much appreciated.

There is the option on the Donate page to make a one-off payment by card - our preference for direct debit is to keep finance charges low and to be able to make decisions about the sustainability of the whole site in the future based on regular donors but any donations are most welcome.

Gaffr I'll pm you about cheque payments.

Thanks again.
User avatar
helenw
Site Admin
 
Posts: 229
Munros:282   Corbetts:172
Grahams:15   Donalds:7
Sub 2000:5   
Joined: Jan 6, 2007

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby RiverSong » Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:44 pm

The walk descriptions and maps are fantastic, and i get a huge amount of information from the site. I am more than happy to pay a monthly contribution.
RiverSong
Walker
 
Posts: 217
Joined: Aug 31, 2013

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby St Pedro » Tue Nov 20, 2018 1:38 pm

DD signed up

great resource for recording and researching hill outings
St Pedro
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 57
Munros:282   Corbetts:164
Grahams:35   Donalds:74
Sub 2000:13   
Joined: May 19, 2012

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby boriselbrus » Tue Nov 20, 2018 10:23 pm

I always thought this site offered a great balance between ads and content and I never found the ads intrusive. However it's such a great resource that I'm very happy to contribute so I've just set up the DD.

Keep up the good work!
boriselbrus
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 24
Munros:188   Corbetts:5
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:44
Wainwrights:59   
Joined: Dec 6, 2014

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby Sgurr » Fri Nov 23, 2018 4:39 pm

Prepared to pay a small amount not to have ads for funeral plans, dental implants, stair-lifts, incontinence products and will writing services following me round the internet (admittedly, I got rid of a lot by using ad-blocker thanks to rockhopper suggesting it). Age seems to be the only thing about me the ad mongers know, and am not telling them anything else if this is what happens.
User avatar
Sgurr
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3311
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:568   Hewitts:126
Wainwrights:119   
Joined: Nov 15, 2010
Location: Fife

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby Paul Webster » Sat Dec 01, 2018 10:14 am

Thanks to all who have added their support.

We've made a couple of recent enhancements to the forum that you might not immediately notice.

One is the way in which photos are loaded when you open a walk report. The site used to just try to load all the photos at once, which could be annoying in a report with many photos - if the ones lower down loaded first then it meant a longer wait to start reading the report from the top, with everything jumping around. Now photos are loaded only as you scroll them into view, which effectively means they load from the top so you can get into the report much faster. This applies whether the photos are hosted on Walkhighlands or externally; it's been tested over a couple of weeks now.

The second is that we've improved the hashing of passwords to a more up-to-date algorithm. The security in which your password is held is improved to the new algorithm whenever you log in; this means that for most regular forum users (unless you stay constantly logged in for months) - you have already been switched to the new system.
User avatar
Paul Webster
Site Admin
Walker
 
Posts: 5163
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:62   Donalds:39
Sub 2000:113   Hewitts:133
Wainwrights:134   
Joined: Jan 6, 2007
Location: Nr Grantown-on-Spey

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby Sgurr » Wed Dec 05, 2018 6:34 pm

Seem to be sneaking back. Through the back door?

Image

And are they personalised to my age bracket again? At least not the funeral/health/chair lift ads.
User avatar
Sgurr
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3311
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:568   Hewitts:126
Wainwrights:119   
Joined: Nov 15, 2010
Location: Fife

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby Paul Webster » Wed Dec 05, 2018 6:52 pm

There is no personalisation of adverts anywhere on Walkhighlands - adverts are allowed only based on the content of Walkhighlands and the page you are viewing. There's no personalisation / tracking of users, so those ads are not targetted at you specifically.

There are no adverts at all on the forum or trip reports.
User avatar
Paul Webster
Site Admin
Walker
 
Posts: 5163
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:62   Donalds:39
Sub 2000:113   Hewitts:133
Wainwrights:134   
Joined: Jan 6, 2007
Location: Nr Grantown-on-Spey

Re: Walkhighlands forum now advert-free

Postby Alteknacker » Wed Dec 05, 2018 8:29 pm

Paul Webster wrote:Thanks to all who have added their support.

We've made a couple of recent enhancements to the forum that you might not immediately notice.

One is the way in which photos are loaded when you open a walk report. The site used to just try to load all the photos at once, which could be annoying in a report with many photos - if the ones lower down loaded first then it meant a longer wait to start reading the report from the top, with everything jumping around. Now photos are loaded only as you scroll them into view, which effectively means they load from the top so you can get into the report much faster. This applies whether the photos are hosted on Walkhighlands or externally; it's been tested over a couple of weeks now...


Thanks Paul. This is really useful, because I do like reports with high res pics - especially panos - that need a large screen to appreciate properly.
User avatar
Alteknacker
Scrambler
 
Posts: 2502
Munros:165   Corbetts:28
Hewitts:195
Wainwrights:71   
Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

Next



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walkhighlands announcements and feedback

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest