General Community Usage
The MyCE staff
All General Community Usage Questions
- Why & how can I register?
- What are forums, threads and posts?
- Viewing New Posts or Today's Posts
- How can I search in the different sections?
- What are announcements?
- Information about Cookies
- Contacting other members
- Dealing with Troublesome Users
- RSS & E-mail Updates
Why & how can I register?
We require you to register in order to use all the features of the community. Being registered gives you an identity, a fixed username on all messages you post and an online public profile.
Registration is free, and offers an extended range of features, including:
- Posting new discussions, questions and problems
- Submitting news tips
- Post user reviews of products you own
- Replying to other peoples' posts and reactions
- Editing your posts
- Receiving email notification of replies to posts and threads you specify
- Sending private messages to other members
- Setting up a 'contact list' to quickly see which of your friends are online
How do I register?
You register by clicking on the 'Register' link near the top of the page on the right. You will be asked to choose a user name and enter a valid email address. In addition, you will be asked for your country, so we can provide you with relevant local information. Once this is complete you will have to click on a link in an 'activation email' sent to your email address. Once you have done this you will be registered.
Note that entering your email address will not leave you open to 'spam', as you can choose to hide it from other community users. Other registered users are able to contact you via email, but we won't display your email address to them unless you give permission.
What are forums, threads and posts?
What is a forum?
A forum is an online discussion site. It contains several categories, consisting of forums, threads and individual posts. The forum as a whole contains various categories (broad subject areas), which themselves contain forums (more specific subject areas) which contain threads (conversations on a topic) which are made up of individual posts (where a user writes something). The forum home page has a list of categories and forums, with basic statistics for each - including the number of threads and posts, and which member posted the most recent message.
How do I find my way around?
When you click on a forum's name, you are taken to the list of threads it contains. A thread is a conversation between members of the community. Each thread starts out as a single post and grows as more individual posts are added by different users. To start a new thread simply click on the 'new discussion' button (but you do need to be registred).
When there are more threads to display than will fit on a single page, you may see the 'Page' box, which contains page numbers. This indicates that the list of threads has been split over two or more pages. This method of splitting lists of items over many pages is used throughout the entire community as well.
What are sticky threads?
'Sticky' threads are created by moderators or administrators, and remain 'stuck' to the top of the listing, even if they haven't had any posts recently. Their purpose is to keep important information visible and accessible at all times. Usually they say "Read First".
How do I read a thread?
To read a thread, click on its title. Each post in a thread is created by a member. You'll see some brief information about the member who created the thread above the main post message.
To post a reply to an existing thread, click on the 'Reply' button. If the 'Reply' button does not appear, it could mean that you are not logged in as a member, or that the thread has been closed to new replies. There is also a 'Quick Reply' box where you can quickly enter a reply without having to go to the 'Reply' page. You may need to click the quick reply button in a post to activate the quick reply box before you can type into it.
Also check the navigation bar at the top of every page, called the 'breadcrumb' area. It has links to help you move around and show you where you are now.
Viewing New Posts or Today's Posts
There are two ways to quickly view recently created or updated threads. If you logged in, you see a 'today's posts' and 'new posts' link on the right of the forum homepage. These links will show a list of all threads that have been created or updated in the last 24 hours, and a listing of all threads that have been created or updated since your last visit.
How can I search in the different sections?
On the top of the page, you will find a large search bar. You can search news posts, articles, reviews, products, members and forum messages.
The forum has some advanced search features. To quickly find a thread or post of interest, view the 'Search' widget on the right. Then, type in the keyword or phrase you wish to search for, and select either 'Show Threads' or 'Show Posts' to view the results. By selecting posts, you will be shown only the actual post in which the search word appears.
For more control over the search, select 'Advanced Search'. The advanced search page allows you to restrict your search to individual forums & find posts or threads by user. There are also options to find posts from a certain date, or threads with a certain number of replies.
If you are browsing a forum, you can quickly search for a thread or post within it by checking the 'Search this forum' widget on the right. You can also search for individual posts within a thread by checking the 'Search this Thread' widget.
What are announcements?
Announcements are special messages posted by the administrator or moderators. They are a simple one-way communication with the users and you can't reply. If you wish to discuss announcements, you will have to create a new thread in the forum. Sometime the announcement already mentions a discussion thread. Announcement threads are displayed at the top of forum listing pages, above regular and sticky threads.
Information about Cookies
When you register (and also when you login), your identity will be stored securely in a cookie on your computer. If you are using a shared computer, such as in a library, school or internet cafe, or if you have reason to not trust any other users that might use this computer, we recommend you to log out after you are finished browsing the community. However, when using your normal computer, we advice you to stay logged in to optimze your browsing experience and have access to more features.
Contacting other members
There are several ways to contact a member from our community. You can send an email to another member by clicking on the email user button on their personal profile page. This will usually open a page that contains a form where you can enter your message. When you have finished typing your message, press the 'send email' button and your message will be sent instantly.
For privacy reasons, the recipient's email address is not revealed to you during this process. If you cannot find an email button or link for a member, it means that the member has said that they do not wish to receive email from other members.
E-mailing a link to a friend
Another useful email function is the ability to send a friend a link to a page you think they may find interesting. Whenever you view a page, you will find a link somewhere on the page which will allow you to send a brief message to anyone you like.
Registered members may also be able to send messages to other members of this community using the private messaging system. For more information about private messaging, click here.
Registered members may leave messages for other members on their profile page. These messages can generally be viewed by all visitors, including members, guests and search engine spiders. For more information on visitor messages, click here.
Dealing with Troublesome Users
If there are particular members that bother you and you do not want to see their posts or receive Private Messages and Emails from them, then you can add these members to your 'Ignore List'. Through your Account Settings page: check out the 'Edit Ignore List' from the Website Settings tab. Then, type their name into the empty text box and click 'Okay'.
What if I see something offensive?
You will find 'Report' links in many places throughout the community. These links allow you to alert the MyCE staff to anything which you find to be offensive, objectionable or illegal.
RSS & E-mail Updates
RSS feeds let you view newly created posts without visiting the community. On the community several RSS buttons are placed, which you can use to get the RSS feed. Most modern browsers have facilities for reading RSS feeds and will automatically detect the availability of feeds.
You might want to check out the help center overview as well. There are more questions & answers there.