The Minutus Group Status Report

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The Minutus Group Status Report

Post by Peter Walker »

Let me summarize the status of the Minutus Group at the moment. 

Minutus Forum
https://minutus.forums.group
After months of work, the Minutus forum has opened with your complete YahooGroup archives from the beginning until April 7, 2020. You can view your complete archives there and also reply to any topic and post new ones in a range of new categories. I will continue to provide technical support on this forum, but Soroush will take on the job of moderating content where necessary. This is by far the best home for the Minutus group:
  • The new forum uses the phpBB 3.30 forum software with a number of extensions. Very user-friendly and easy to use.
  • You can read and post messages and replies on the forum or via an app. Just as easy to use as via email, without clogging up your email account.
  • For technical reasons, it is NOT possible to post via Email. New posts are also not currently being sent out via email, but is being investigated.
  • Forums are actually superior to mailing lists – Mailing lists are like a newspaper, only the topic of the day. Forums are like a library with easy access to each of the books (topics) in the archives.
  • Everyone from the Minutus YahooGroup should already have an account on the new forum with access to their respective existing posts.
  • Members that used more than one email account with the YahooGroup and made a post, will have an account for each address.
  • It is possible to merge the accounts into one. Contact user Peter Walker if this applies to you with a list of all your email accounts to combine.
  • Instructions on how to obtain your username and password are displayed clearly and this can be done within a couple of minutes.
  • Posting is done online or via an app – much more conveniently than via email.
  • iOS and Android users can use the TapaTalk app to easily read and post on the forum from your smartphone or tablet.
  • All your archives have been restored there and are now online.
  • It is now much easier to read posts made in the past
  • Your files and photos can be found here.
  • At the bottom of each post, there are links to 10 similar posts enabling you to find related topics posted even up to 20 years ago.
  • A daily digest of new posts made on the Minutus Forum is being posted to the Minutus YahooGroup via email. and reposted on the Minutus group on groups.io (membership required).
  • The forum has a selection of categories and we need volunteers to help move the existing posts into the respective sections.
  • Please make sure you are logged in and start using the new forum, now.
  • This is now the ONLY platform I will continue to actively provide support for. My temporary job of technically moderating the YahooGroup and Minutus group on groups.io is now complete – I have other jobs to work on.
 Minutus YahooGroup
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/minutus
This was the original home of the Minutus group. Yahoo removed the archives on December 16, 2019 and severely reduced the capabilities to control the group. In recent times, the YahooGroup has been doing all kinds of strange things beyond the control of the moderators. We have been seeing people complaining about receiving messages without even being members. They can even post, yet their email addresses are not listed in the member list. We can therefore not prevent these people from receiving posts from our group and they are unable to unsubscribe, either. Members who were previously set to receive no email are now being shown as set to receive Individual Emails. Many members that joined years ago are now surprised to suddenly be receiving emails from us. Moderation capabilities have been severely curtailed and often trying to make simple changes just gives an error message. The YahooGroup has become unmanageable and I can only recommend to not use it any more for posts – use the Minutus Forum instead, that is a much better platform.
  • As YahooGroups no longer store the posted messages, everything posted there is sent out immediately – there is no digest feature available at all.
  • Some members have continued to post to the YahooGroup, that is further splitting the energies of the group. We now have a new and powerful platform with the Minutus Forum – please move all new topics to the Minutus Forum.
  • A daily digest of posts made on the Minutus Forum is now being automatically posted to the YahooGroup. This allows lurkers that have not yet logged into the forum to continue to be informed of current topics. This should now be the only use of the YahooGroup.
  • Recent topics posted on the YahooGroup have now been reposted on the Minutus group on groups.io and future posts made there should now automatically appear there as well. The groups.io group does offer its own digests, for those that want them.
  • The reasons that continuing to post to the YahooGroup is not a good idea are that all posts are not archived (although I have started to redirect them to groups.io), there is no digest option forcing everyone to have their mailboxes to be flooded every day with every individual emails or leave the group. There are now a lot of complaints from people who do not want to receive all this chit-chat, but do want the Forum Digest. There are more than enough diverse categories on the forum for well organized parallel discussions that people can selectively read whereas the YahooGroup rams every single post into people’s inboxes if they want them or not. The only other option is to leave the YahooGroup and then miss out on the digests – the official role of the YahooGroup. Move the discussions to the Forum, then people can choose what they want to read.
  • My job as moderator of the YahooGroup was necessary to help organize the rebuilding of the group into what has not become the Minutus Forum. That job is done and I no longer see it as my job to manage the YahooGroup anymore.
  • I strongly advise against continuing to use the YahooGroup for chatting and to move such discussions to the forum instead. I will certainly now stop providing support for the YahooGroup and will not respond to questions posted there anymore. Discussions can continue on the forum or for the die-hards on groups.io.
  • Please address any future enquires for assistance to the original moderator Soroush. I have assigned him full moderator rights to the YahooGroup. Again, it should now only be used to redistribute the Daily Digest.
  • If you want to unsubscribe from the YahooGroup, send an email to [email]minutus-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com?subject=Unsubscribe[/email] with Unsubscribe on the subject line? If that does not work, contact Soroush for assistance, for example at minutus-owner@yahoogroups.com
 Minutus Group on groups.io
https://rifegroup.groups.io/g/Minutus
This was initially setup as a replacement for the YahooGroup after the archives went offline. Every member of the YahooGroup was sent an invite, but only just over 100 members actually joined at the time. It is a modern replacement for a YahooGroup and can do everything the YahooGroups used to be able to do and more. Posts from the YahooGroup are now being automatically reposted to this group. It is possible to continue discussions via Email there and is certainly a better place to do so than the YahooGroup.
  • Like a YahooGroup, it is one long stream of discussions without being sorted into categories.
  • Messages are being archived and can be read online.
  • Digests are available. Members of the YahooGroup who just want to receive messages in the digest, can leave the YahooGroup and join this group instead.
  • Posting via Email is possible, for the die-hards that have not yet discovered the numerous advantages of using a forum.
  • Although I am officially the owner of this group, I have assigned Soroush moderation rights and I will be now withdrawing my support except for technical issues that Soroush cannot handle.
Who is Peter Walker?
I am the British owner of the Rife Forum (www.rifeforum.com) and am involved in various projects. My day-job, so to speak, is running a microscope company www.grayfieldoptical.com.

I am also involved in numerous other projects including https://gadgetheaven.net and am even the webmaster of the Star Trek New Voyages Fan-Film series: www.stnv.de. I joined this group as part of my project to archive 70 Health-Related YahooGroups after Yahoo announced their plans to remove the archives. I am still offering those archives for download and offline reading on Windows PCs. https://groups.rifeforum.com

After seeing that your active group was heading for disaster with the imminent deletion of the YahooGroup archives with no appropriate action being taken, I spoke up and offered my assistance to secure this group. I have no background in homeopathy, I am however heavily involved in Rife resonance therapy as well as being a computer expert with deep experience in running YahooGroups and forums. By the time my assistance was accepted, it was too late to properly migrate your group to groups.io – three days earlier would have been enough, but my messages got held up in moderation. Since then, I have been providing technical assistance and helping to moderate the Minutus group with the aim of restoring your archives and members online on a new platform. This cost me hundreds of hours of my time, but the job is now complete with the opening of the Minutus forum. As I have had to neglect my other projects to help your group recover from the loss of your archives and group integrity, I now have to step back from supporting the YahooGroup and your groups.io group and will only be providing technical support for the forum in future. I used this situation to start the new https://forums.group platform and your group was used as the prototype for setting up this new service. The aim is now, to offer other lost YahooGroups the ability to migrate to Forums.Group and regain their archives and integrity again. I therefore will have to step back from supporting your group as the reasons for me being here have now been resolved. I spent hundreds of hours rescuing your group without pay where the $311 donated was all spent on costs and it was not even enough. But it is now time for me to move on to my other projects including preparing the forums.group platform for other groups that need to be restored. I have provided the forum and it is fully functional, but it is up to you to actually use it. 

“You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink”
is a suitable phrase to describe the current situation. Believe me, the forum is by far the best place to make your group thrive. Do not make the mistake of trying to hold on to your old ways by continuing to use the more than broken YahooGroups system. It is good enough to distribute the digest, everything else just results in your posts being lost to future readers and only seen by a few. Posts on the forum are well preserved and can easily still be found and read 10 years from now. What you post on the YahooGroup will be mostly forgotten a week or so later. I know this from my years of running forums and groups of my own and it also took some time for my members to recognise the advantages of the forum system, but now it is a thriving community. 

Either way, I have given you as much good advice as I could and it is now your responsibility to learn from it. My job here is done and I have left you an excellent platform for your future discussions. It does cost money to run a forum like the Minutus Forum and as your group was the prototype, I have set it up with premium features and without advertising for now. You have until next April to decide if you can then invest the $150 per annum to continue at that level or to have your group reduced to the Free hosting level with less features and advertising to cover costs. More details at https://forums.group 

Thanks to those who worked with me to restore your group to the Minutus Forum. It is now up to you guys to use it responsibly in the future. I am still around for emergencies, but I will be withdrawing from the day-to-day support of your group. 

Best wishes and I hope your group will continue to thrive. 

Regards 

Peter Walker
 
 


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Re: The Minutus Group Status Report

Post by Peter Walker »

The forums.group platform is still in the process of evolving and as this is the first active group, I am of course actively monitoring what happens here in order to see what can be done to make further improvements. 

Receiving and Posting messages via Email
This is not the first time I have moved a group from a YahooGroup to a forum system. I initially started the Rife YahooGroup and in September 2002, then started the www.rifeforum.com online forum. It was the same problem back then, people were used to receiving messages and replying via email that there was also resistance to moving to a forum based system. I then started the Rifeforum YahooGroup specifically to automatically repost forum posts via email and a few hundred members signed up for it and it is still in use even today. It is a one-way system, that is new posts go out via email, but new posts have to be made on the forum. The Rife Forum uses the vBulletin forum engine that makes this possible while the forums.group platform uses the open source phpbb forum software which by default does not provide a facility to send out new posts via email. I have therefore just installed an extension that is claimed to at least allow posts to be sent out via email that I am currently testing. If it works well, I can use it to repost forum messages to the minutus group on groups.io. The problem with this solution is that people then try to reply via email and I have to constantly tell these people that they have to reply online, instead. This is still happening on my Rifeforum group despite it being in use now for several years. To a certain extent, I can understand some people wanting to receive messages via email, so that they can archive them as they like in their email system. The problem is when they reply via email as there is currently no system available to automatically receive emails and then post them into the correct topic on the forum. 

What are the advantages of posting via email?
Good question, people using YahooGroups are simply used to responding this way and are resistant to change as they are creatures of habit. You can give then hundreds of reasons why it is so much better to respond on a forum or in an app and they still will be resistant. They often say no without even trying to post on a forum - it is somehow a matter of principle. The only thing which would persuade them would be to allow them to post via emails even when it makes little sense and they are missing tons of advantages from posting online. In reality, posting online or via email are actually very similar experiences.

Image

Here you can see what the above post looks like in Microsoft Outlook and as a post in the forum editor. There is actually more in common than there are differences. Both have a subject line, formatting tools and a text area for writing in. Both can add attachments and spell checking, but only the forum offers Smilies to be easily inserted into your posts. When you are finished, you click on Send in Outlook or Submit in the forum. There is really not much difference so why is there so much resistance? Again, the problem is more perceived than real and is often just fear of the unknown. People know how to reply by email, whereas replying on a forum is somehow perceived as being different. As you can see above, the differences are minimal and once people simply try is out for themselves, they find it is no big deal. Using the app is even more similar to responding via email and allows for direct interaction with the posts online. 

In summary, the best thing you can ask the die-hard critics of writing on a forum is: Have you actually tried it and what were you missing? Most will discover it is almost the same as writing an email.


 


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Re: The Minutus Group Status Report

Post by Peter Walker »

Sharing Forum Posts on Social Media.

A new feature has just been added so that you can easily share any forum messages on a range of social media services. At the bottom of each post, you will see a string of icons for the various supported social media websites. Just click on the respective icon to share the post on the social media website and simultaneously make their users aware of this forum.

The following Social media sites are supported: Facebook, Twitter, Tuenti, Digg, Reddit, Delicious, VK, Tumblr, Google+, Whatsapp and Pocket.

As the forums.group continues to grow, more features will be added.

Enjoy

Peter Walker
 


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Re: The Minutus Group Status Report

Post by Peter Walker »

Some members are still a little shy to start using the forum and have recently been continuing to first use the YahooGroup and now the Minutus group on groups.io. It is of course possible that they have not yet worked out how to login. Instructions are displayed prominently on the top of the website, but sometimes that does not work. If you tried that and still cannot login, send an email to minutus@forums.group and I will check that the account is OK and send you a password.

Writing messages in the forum is the best way of reaching everybody. Not only does your message appear on the forum, the post is also sent out immediately as an individual email to the https://rifegroup.groups.io/g/Minutus group and also once a day as a digest to the YahooGroup.

Therefore, if you want to continue receiving new posts via email, just join the Minutus Group on groups.io and groups.io also offer their own digest option, but then again so does this forum.

I understand that any change can be confusing and you are used to receiving new posts via emails and replying by email to post. Currently, you have to reply on the forum itself, but I am investigating adding a new feature to allow replies via email as well. It will however take a week or two before that can be implemented. Until then, replies and starting new topics can be done on the forum very easily. Receiving new messages via Email is already working.

Here are some recent comments (edited and updated) that I made on that groups.io list that you might not have seen:

In response from a comment about the the new Share On feature:

The forum has its own internal private messaging service, much more secure than email as the messages never leave the system. This is a standard feature of all phpBB forums as the forum also does not disclose people's email addresses like a mailing list does.

All that happens there are little icons are added to each post so that a user can individually share the contents of one post to another platform from the list of platforms. 

A forum is not a mailing list, a better analogy is that it is like a library. You go to the library and can read the books (topics) you want to, nicely sorted by category and topic with the ability to add your own comments to each topic. The entire contents of a library are not sold on street corners. A mailing list is like a newspaper - the topic of the day is discussed and it is disseminated far and wide via Email, like newspapers are sold everywhere on that day. 

There are over 100,000 messages on the forum and members can go to any of these and add a comment to a topic that was discussed say 10 years ago. That new post is then sent out to the group via email and all people see is the subject title and the new comment. Without reading the entire topic, they are then just confused as they do not have the context until they go to the forum and read the full topic in question. That is why forums do not generally broadcast new messages out via email. If I went to a library and read a book and then sent out a text message with the title "Tempest" that said "Thank you, that was a wonderful quote" - all that would do is confuse everybody and the clever ones would think of Shakespeare. They would have to go to the library in question (forum) and read the topic to know you were referring to “We are such stuff as dreams are made on, and our little life is rounded with a sleep.” And then be further confused to discover it being quoted by Sulu and his daughter Alana in the Star Trek episode "World Enough and Time." https://www.stnv.de/weat (another project of mine). So perhaps you can understand now that sending out every message via email from a forum can be more confusing than going there and reading everything in context. Why should you be interested in reading new random comments on topics that are years old? Forums "can" be about the topic of the day, but at the same time about the topic of 15 years ago as many people read various topics at the same time and by email, you only see the new comment, not the context. 

A forum is a much richer and diverse environment than a mailing list. A forum makes it really easy to find topics written years ago. When did you last read an article from the New York Times of April 2009 and expect everyone to understand your comment about it?

So, if you are interested in reading those random messages, you can now do so in the Minutus groups.io group. Just don't complain if you find those quotes confusing. Be careful what you wish for.

-----

In relation to a post about disputes between Hahnemann 'purists'  and those with a more open approach:

I have always found the best answer, when there are two opposing factions, is to give each their own section and let them both thrive independently. Then readers can choose which faction they support and just read that if they want. That works well on a forum, not so well on a group where you are more likely to have arguments. Live and let live is a good policy in my opinion, but then I am in favour of free speech when it comes to ideas and concepts. 

On the forum, the main section is called Hahnemannian Homeopathy with one of the categories being Non-Hahnemannian Homeopathy. Is that OK or should things be changed? 

As to emails, I have been chatting with the Polish programmer, I have been working with for years who also handled the message migration, and he tells me he had developed a similar system years ago for another customer that could be adapted. I told him that it needs to be able to send out posts via Email from selected forums (e.g. we can choose which forums get sent out this way, e.g. not the vaccination section to a groups.io group) and when people reply (without changing the subject line), the new part of the post gets posted to the end of that original topic under the name of the person replying. If the email address does not match known member, the message is rejected. Anyway, he is going to look into it and what it would cost and get back to me this week. I would like to implement this if possible as it is obviously important to some people here. Unfortunately, I do not have a budget for this so it all depends on how much it costs and if the funds can be raised, somehow. ----

Hennie pointed out that they were missing the simple ability to receive and reply to messages via email and asked people to vote on that:

You are all asking as if there were various options on the table! 

There were only ever two options available for a YahooGroup that wants to maintain their online archives: 

1. Full migration to groups.io with messages, members, etc. for $220. There was a time limit on this which you had already missed and not even had the money organized for, before I said anything on this group. Then I found a backdoor that would have made it still possible to migrate in time and for only $50, but nobody co-operated with me until it was too late, so you missed that deadline by 3 days as well. That is the solution over 3000 groups managed to do and is the solution some people here are still dreaming of... but that ship has sailed and is not coming back. 

1a. The guy who wrote PG Offline also made a software to apparently be able to upload groups data to groups.io from backups. I have personally tested that software and it is very expensive and buggy. I ran your data through it and you would have lost about half your messages. Additionally, the groups.io policies on vaccinations made groups.io undesirable for this group. I actually personally received an email from the owner of groups.io specifically naming Minutus and warning that if that topic is discussed, this group would be deleted. Your group was without doubt on their radar for such discussions. 

2. The forums.group platform is now the ONLY platform that can migrate YahooGroups into an online forum. That job has been done and is online now. You only have to use it. 

That's it, you can search online all you want as I have, there are no other options where you can keep your archives. These are the facts, not some agenda of mine, simply a factual explanation. 

The only real problem you presume to have is related to posting. Some people, who according to forum logs at the time of writing, have never even tried to login to the forum, are rejecting it out of hand because it somehow hurts their feelings to visit a website. I have yet to hear a more logical reason than it is somehow "horrible", without even trying it. This is what is holding you all up and causing all this unrest. 

If you use the TapaTalk App (free with ads or the pro version without ads for a few dollars), then reading and posting is easy from a smartphone or really nice on a tablet (I use it with an Android tablet). 

The issue of receiving new posts via email as they are posted has been resolved. Such messages are already being posted to this groups.io group. Daily digests are also being sent out automatically via the YahooGroup and each post contains a direct link to the original post on the forum where you can read the entire topic and write your response. You will also find at the end of each topic, links to 10 similar topics from your archives. As the question of posting via email seems to be such a massive issue for those that have refused to try posting on the forum (which is really easy by the way), I have asked the expert programmer I used to find an alternative. He has some similar code he thinks can be rewritten to make this possible. He will let me know in the next few days. Of course, this extra software has not been budgeted for and this project is already way over budget. We will have to see how much this will cost and determine then if NOT having to visit a website or use an app to post is worth the extra expense. That is the real question that has to be answered when we know what the costs will be.
Regards

Peter Walker
 
 
 


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Re: The Minutus Group Status Report

Post by Peter Walker »

Using your Smartphone or Tablet to access the Minutus Forum

It is easy to access the Minutus Forum on your Apple or Android smartphone or tablet. To demonstrate this, I have made a short 10 minute video using the TapaTalk Pro app. Tapatalk is available in two versions, the free version works just the same, except that it shows you adverts between the posts and this can get tedious. I do recommend you first try out the free version to see if it is something you can work with. If you like it, you can upgrade to the Pro app at any time for a one-time fee of a few dollars - about the price of a Pizza.


I personally use it on both my Android smartphone (Huawei P20) and tablet. It is very usable on both, but is nicer on the tablet due to the larger screen and keyboard.

Please have a look at my 10 minute video that demonstrates how to use it: https://youtu.be/TAMzUmU3jzA



Enjoy. I am trying to release a new post each day helping to explain how to use your new forum.
 
P.S. The broken image problem shown in the video has since been resolved and the image is now being shown properly in the app. I will be remaking this video without the broken images.


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