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July 25, 2012
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FAQ Revamp Underway

Wed Jul 25, 2012, 9:06 AM
Hey deviants!! :wave:
The Help Desk team myself ewm, Ikue, and Thunderstatement have been super busy making sure that all of your General Inquiries and Bug Reports get handled as soon as possible. Our current initial response time is no more than 48 hours this week! We are super pleased to announce that we’ve been doing a lot more than handling tickets lately. We are doing some serious business FAQ Revamping to make sure all FAQs are completely up to date and easy to understand. We are also merging similar FAQs to reduce redundancy to keep the overall FAQ amounts low to ensure it’s easier to find the information you are looking for.

We started the FAQ Revamp last week and we’ve already covered a little over 100 FAQs!! The following FAQ sections are ones we have already tackled or are currently in the process of tackling.

deviantART>About deviantART
deviantART>Browsing & Comments
deviantART>Deviation & Scraps
deviantART>My Account
Groups

We’ve relocated some FAQs for easier locating such as all Point FAQs which were originally located in the Prints section are now located in the main section of the FAQ page under Points.

We are also creating brand new FAQs based on common inquiries we’ve received in the Help Desk. The following are are brand new.

FAQ #400: I created a group but users cannot join. How do I let them?
FAQ #401: Iím experiencing problems with my group, what can I do?
FAQ #402: Iím an admin in a group but cannot perform administrative actions, why?
FAQ #403: How will others know that Iím part of a group? How do I know what groups I'm in?
FAQ #404: How do I upload an avatar for my group and what are the limitations?
FAQ #405: How do I leave a group I no longer wish to be a part of?
FAQ #406: How do I remove a userís deviation from my groups gallery/favs?
FAQ #407: How do I remove my deviations from a group?
FAQ #408: Can I delete my group?
FAQ #410: What are the official deviantART groups?
FAQ #430: Can any member of the group submit deviations to the group's gallery?

We hope that these changes make it easier for everyone to find the information they are looking for. If anyone has any thoughts on our FAQ Revamp project please feel free to leave a comment on this blog post. We’d love to hear what you guys think of what’s been done so far and if anyone has any recommendations on FAQs that are getting rusty, are confusing, or maybe there’s something you feel is missing from our FAQ please let us know! :)

Stay tuned for more updates!!

Add a Comment:
 
:iconarshlatif:
ArshLatif Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2012  Student Photographer
Can we have a list of staff members and community volunteers so that they are more accessible and therefore more active with new members?

Thanks.
A.
Reply
:iconnamenotrequired:
namenotrequired Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2012  Student Interface Designer
I'd love to see some deviantART muro related FAQs :)
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Most definitely. That is something we will be looking into. :)
Reply
:iconnamenotrequired:
namenotrequired Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2012  Student Interface Designer
:#1:
Reply
:iconkashimusprime:
KashimusPrime Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Not sure if you guys are still doing this, but it's come to my attention that there are three FAQs that are needed.

The first one concerning traced bases, being a list of what's accepted and list off what you can't make a traced base off of (IE Fan art or commissions).

The second one I've been yelled at so many times over by immature children. We need a deviantART definition of acceptable memes. People are submitting screenshots from movies with text splashed on it and calling it deviantart worthy because "deviantART accepts memes!" They have no concept what an acceptable meme is. It would be nice to have a working definition to help point children into the right direction and clear some of this irrelevant waste from deviantART's server.

Another one that's needed is about motivational/demotivational posters. What deviantART accepts and what's breaking the ToS. So many times people are posting screenshots as de/motives and proclaiming "Everyone else is doing it! So I can to!" :iconfacepalmplz:
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Hi there! As mentioned already in the comments the Help Desk Team is only updating general FAQs. We will not be updating the content for Retail and Copyright & Etiquette Administration FAQs as those are handled by their own teams.
Reply
:iconkashimusprime:
KashimusPrime Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh alright.
Reply
:icon4everyoungkid:
4EverYoungKid Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2012
:meow: yay.
Reply
:iconarchaeobibliologist:
archaeobibliologist Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2012  Professional Photographer
I think you should randomly give one of the FAQ's an FAQ number of 9001 after you're done.
That way when Fiona asks you how the revamp is going, you can have a Dragonball-Z moment "IT'S OVER 9000!!!!"

Seriously though...

I have a suggestion is slightly connected to the FAQ revamp.
I searched for "staff" in the FAQ and found FAQ #504: Is there an official staff listing?
The only issue I have with this FAQ is this. about.deviantart.com does list all paid staff members, but the volunteer staff (like gallery directors and such) are not listed. And the unofficial *stafflist is usually so far out of date as to be useless. It's useless looking on *stafflist trying to determine which person I should send a DD suggestion to because it's VERY out-of-date.

I don't know how hard it is to revamp the FAQ's, but would it be possible to place a staff directory (both staff and volunteer) in an FAQ like 504 and assign someone (maybe even a volunteer) to edit it once a month or as changes occur to keep it up to date? It would be nice having a unified staff and volunteer list on dA that people can search directly from the FAQ for questions like which gallery mod gets my DD message.
Reply
:iconarchaeobibliologist:
archaeobibliologist Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2012  Professional Photographer
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!! :bug:
Reply
:iconnamenotrequired:
namenotrequired Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2012  Student Interface Designer
Just thought I'd let you know, this is listed on the +help page as "untitled draft".
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
what the crap :| thanks for letting me know!
Reply
:iconnamenotrequired:
namenotrequired Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2012  Student Interface Designer
No problem :D
Reply
:iconbolsterstone:
bolsterstone Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2012   General Artist
Good going, guys! I'm glad that you are taking this on -- it's not an easy task and I don't envy you for it.

There are a few things I've noticed about the FAQs over the years -- and some of them have been ongoing issues. I'll suggest two that I think are more important for an FAQ and leave the others for another time. (I wouldn't want to snow you under.)

Problem#1: Keywords
And, the one main thing I would suggest is that there is some care taken in terms of which keywords are used to bring up various topics. For example, if I were looking for a list of "community volunteers" under the current FAQ and type in "volunteers", then I would get:

#84 What are the Core Values of the Community Relations and Operations Departments?
#85 Can I be a volunteer on deviantART?


But not:

#504 Is there an official staff listing?


2. Bug Reporting
Another example is how you report bugs on dA. Type in "bugs" and you get

#722 Why do certain bugs take longer than others to be fixed?

but no reference to :icondevbug:.

3. The Order in Which Things Appear on the FAQ or "What is the Website About?"
Normally the rule of thumb for FAQs is that questions such as "What is the website about?" are usually the first thing that hits the reader of the document. Instead if you hit the "About Deviantart" button on the FAQ, it is buried under two categories, Promoting and Staff, which is strange. And, even when you hit the "About Deviantart" category, then you find the actual entry which tells you what dA is about is buried like so:

About deviantART

How do I become a Senior Member?
What are the symbols in front of each deviants nickname?
What is deviantART and who founded deviantART?
Does deviantART have an IRC Server?
Is deviantART free?
People keep sending me llamas, what are they?

It's an odd way to promote your website by burying what is usually the first question in an FAQ right smack in the middle of a list of questions. A website's priorities are communicated by the FAQ.

4. Caring for New Users
An FAQ is traditionally and primarily aimed at new users and newbies. But seeking help via the FAQ is not easy and can be overwhelming for new users. Try to take a look at the FAQ from the viewpoint of a newbie. For example, let's say that a newbie wants to find out how galleries work or has accidentally removed a dev from their Featured section and wants to bring it back. The newbie enters "Gallery" in the FAQ and gets literally a kitchen sink style dump of everything related to "Galleries". I apologize for this dump but this should give you an idea of what they have to read through:

Deviations & Scraps: General

Will the deviantART staff remove all my deviations for me because it takes too long for me to delete deviations one by one?
Where can I find the description to a Gallery that I want to submit to?
Is there a limit to how many deviations I can submit?
What determines the way my photos are arranged in my gallery when clicking on the sort option 'Popular'?

Browsing & Comments: Browsing

Can I browse a user's gallery by a specific Category?

Deviations & Scraps: Problems & Errors

I just tried to submit a file to X Category, but it told me the filetype I am trying to upload is not allowed. What can I do?
Can I suggest new submission categories to be added?

Problems & Errors

My film was removed from the gallery. Why?

Deviations & Scraps: Submitting

How do I submit Artwork, Flash Animations or Literature?

My Account: Statistics

What are Gallery Stats, and how can I view them?
What does the color of the Gallery Stats boxes mean?
What does the size of the Gallery Stats boxes mean?

Problems & Errors: Server Issues

I submitted data to deviantART, but it did not post. Why?

Deviations & Scraps: Gallery Management

What are my Personal Gallery Management Tools, and how do I get to them?
What is the Deviation Storage Tool, and how do I access it? Can I temporarily hide deviations?

General Group Questions

How do I remove a user’s deviation from my groups gallery/favs?
How do I remove my deviations from a group?
Can any member of the group submit deviations to the group's gallery?

My Account: Your Gallery

How do I change the style of my Gallery Folders?
Can I add CSS to my main gallery page?
How can I edit the name of a gallery folder that I have created?
How do I create folders in my gallery?
How do I move deviations to gallery folders that I have created?
How do I add or edit a gallery folders description?
How can I remove a deviation from the featured section of my gallery once I have featured it?
Can I add a deviation to multiple gallery folders?
Can I add a deviation back to the featured section of my gallery once I have removed it?
Is it possible to move deviations from one page to another in my gallery?
Is it possible to rearrange my gallery folders?

Guides

How do I submit Film?


Here's my point: galleries are one of the main selling points and features of dA. But a newbie entering "Gallery" as a search term gets a literal kitchen sink of questions that could be daunting and confusing. Try to find one of the most common newbie questions in this list, such as "How do I submit Artwork, Flash Animations or Literature?" (which has 98 people seeking it weekly). It is buried in the middle of the list and is pretty hard to find.

My apologies if this came off as being mean-minded. I think the dA staff do a wonderful job. But again, I don't envy all of you who are doing the FAQ overhaul -- it's not an easy task maintaining an FAQ regularly, let alone one that has been left untended for a while...

I'm sorry if
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
oh boy that's a lot to go over!!!! :giggle:

1: We do agree that the keywords need some love but I think in the situation you have described with the keyword "volunteers" not pulling up the Staff list FAQ is completely inaccurate. Volunteers and Staff do not mean the same thing. Volunteers are volunteers and Staff are paid employees of deviantART. We are reducing unnecessary keywords and trying to make the keywords better fitting for the FAQs to make it easier to find the information you may be looking for.

2: FAQ 722 doesn't have anything to do with devBUG. The group devBug only pertains to Beta Testing where as FAQ 722 has to do with site wide issues that have nothing to do with beta testing.

3: I do agree that the order of what appears when you search for something is extremely important. Last time I checked if you type in Submit the actual How to Submit a deviation FAQ is 19th on the list which is really inconvenient. We are working to improve this through better keywording and potentially a better FAQ system where certain FAQs can be prioritized.

4: Prioritizing the FAQ should help with aiding newbs by making the most important things to know about the site more visible.


We completely understand that the FAQ is extremely unhelpful especially for those who are knew.. it is extremely overwhelming to find the exact information you need which is why we are working on eliminating information that is no longer applicable as well as condensing multiple FAQs into single entries such as we had 3 FAQs on Read-Only mode which were extremely short and it made much more sense to be able to find all of the information in a single FAQ. It's quite an extensive overhaul and there's still a lot more progress to be made. Rest assured that once the FAQ is finally in it's completed form it will be much more newb friendly, easier to find the information you need, and will be easier to to ensure information is kept up to date. :)
Reply
:iconbolsterstone:
bolsterstone Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2012   General Artist
Thanks for taking the time to read through all that and respond. Cheers! :love:
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
no worries!! There's been a lot of great feedback and every bit of feedback helps to make sure we can make the FAQ the best we can. :)
Reply
:iconcelticstrm-stock:
CelticStrm-Stock Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh! I completely forgot this: A ~welcome-stock would be awesome. I've been meaning to make a visual suggestion on this and I will as soon as I get the time. I think it would be great if new members could choose what kind of account they want ie: stock, art, traditional, general and so on. For example when they choose to create a Stock account they would be directed to the ~welcome-stock page which would give them more in-depth information on how to become a stock provider and what is appropriate as stock as well as navigating :devart:.
Reply
:iconcelticstrm-stock:
CelticStrm-Stock Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think this is fantastic! I would like to see something defining the concept of the "Public Domain Image" though. Lately we've run across a lot of people believing that just because a photo is on the internet, that makes it public domain. This applies to both art and stock. This includes lifting art and stock photos for their blogs, youtube, flickr, tumblr, photobucket, and facebook. We've also had an issue with artists uploading our stock to outside websites like photobucket and leaving an image url to that instead of linking it to our accounts for "credit." The current stock FAQ are great, but perhaps something a little more obvious might help. :)
Reply
:icontheblackbullets:
TheBlackBullets Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I think there should be faqs on folders within the group. Like how to add folders and how to let people submit to them.
Reply
:iconksxzt:
KSXZT Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think, for a global site with millions of users, that you're doing a great job. Obviously development is ongoing, and you need to make the site as user-friendly as possible, but people need to have some common sense.

Keep up the good work!
Reply
:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012
Does deviants' requests to be able to upload music FAQ exist or being added? Seeing as people want one where they are uploading the music only (which as mentioned a lot of time would never happen but a FAQ would help a lot when it keeps showing up in suggestion every so often; even if there is a common suggestion about this).

The only ones there are things related to music pertaining to film/animation or for requests.
FAQ #191: Can I ask for or give out copyrighted music, video or programs while using the site?
FAQ #614: What can I use for music tracks and sound effects in my animation or film?
FAQ #47: My film has some copyrighted images in it, can I still post it?
FAQ #844: Can I submit a film with copyrighted music?
FAQ #852: Where can I find music for my films?


There was a music explanation in the previous Common Suggestion, though the FAQ linked there doesn't work now.

:bulletblack: Allow the submission of music.

We agree that music is a valid art form, however at this time the addition of music will not happen, due to the copyright issues surrounding it.

FAQ #227: What are some of the suggestions deviantART receives for features that simply will not be put in place?



While it's understandable that it's short form in the common suggestion, but explaining the same thing over and over would be far easier with a FAQ on this (which I guess someone would hopefully search before suggesting).
Also about changing dA's colour :lol:


Also for this FAQ, FAQ #723: How come things are not better tested before they are released?, having a link to the beta tester's :icondevbug: group might be helpful? D:
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for your input!! :)
Reply
:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2012
No problem. :)
Reply
:iconilantiis:
iLantiis Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is great news! Revamping the FAQs is much needed, so it is awesome that it is getting done. :squee:
Reply
:iconpica-ae:
pica-ae Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Professional Interface Designer
:eager:
Reply
:icontigles1artistry:
Tigles1Artistry Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:iconbravoplz:.. to you guys....
These were I believe essencial items that needed clarification to a lot of members...
Thanks for the hard work....:love:
Reply
:iconkrissi001:
Krissi001 Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012
:iconexcitedplz:
Reply
:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012
Good! C:
Also agree with what =Katara-Alchemist mentioned about the PCP.
The CEA and Retail section would deal with the other sections of the changes in the FAQs right?
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
The CEA and Retail sections are all handled by their teams so those updates are fully handled by those departments. :)
Reply
:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2012
Ok! Good to know. :)
Reply
:iconmiontre:
miontre Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
This is amazing! :la: Thanks for all the hard work.

Also, isn't #projecteducate an official group too? :D
Reply
:iconlost-angle:
lost-angle Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
408 <_< ignore previous statement about deleting groups

Apparently I'm blind
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
:giggle: nah you aren't blind. It was mentioned to us yesterday that we didn't have an FAQ on that so we created it earlier today before I posted this article. If you can think of any other well needed FAQs just let us know! :)
Reply
:iconlost-angle:
lost-angle Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I am blind! I didn't see it listed until I saw namenotrequired's comment about it. I will let you know if I think of anything else that's needed.

Oh! The official groups FAQ could maybe use descriptions of what each group is, just something breif one line. (On my #dA-Dictionary I have a widget for official groups that seems more complete and also lets people know what each group is for.)
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Great suggestion!! :)
Reply
:iconlost-angle:
lost-angle Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
no problem!
Reply
:iconlost-angle:
lost-angle Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
This is wonderful and I'm glad to see some great group FAQs. I would like to see a FAQ for "How do I close a group I no longer want?" though. (This question gets asked at devBUG at least once every two days or so.)
Reply
:iconkatara-alchemist:
Katara-Alchemist Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Student General Artist
Very cool!
I'd like to see an FAQ for premium content, since I know a lot of people still have questions about it. One I run into a lot is confusion over why 100pts=$1 on the platform, but when you buy points it's 80pts=$1. I understand that this has to do with the 80/20 cuts, but I know a lot of people are confused by it. I'd love to have an FAQ to link them to.
Also, when submitting premium content there's a button next the "custom agreement" option that says "more info" and when clicked, part of what is said is "If you would like some pointers on putting together a custom agreement we have written a helpful FAQ which will be supplemented from time to time with new information and links to form agreements you may want to use or adapt." The FAQ isn't linked there though, and I haven't been able to find it. Does it not exist yet or am I just missing it somehow?
Reply
:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012
:thumbsup:
Reply
:iconelectricjonny:
electricjonny Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Great stuff :nod: Especially the group FAQ's.
Reply
:iconprojectsonic:
projectsonic Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012   Writer
Are you planning to revamp the porn related FAQs at all? It's still a hit-and-miss to most deviants that report such things, and an exact definition of such a thing would be nice. :I
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
This update is only for the General FAQs things that do not relate to information handled by Retail Customer Care or Copyright & Etiquette Administration.
Reply
:iconprojectsonic:
projectsonic Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012   Writer
Ah, alright then. Thanks!
Reply
:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:la:

I think they need to be easier to find, though. If you know about +faq you're golden but if you don't, none of this helps.
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
I do agree it needs to be easier to locate. Currently you can access the FAQ by either using the Sticky Menu or by going to the bottom of any deviantART page and clicking Help & FAQ. :)
Reply
:iconthepoeticpaladin:
ThePoeticPaladin Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
It might be a good idea to consider changing the color of the "Help & FAQ" on the sticky menu. A bright yellow or something, to make sure that people notice it when they open that, before they go off to the forums to ask it.
Reply
:iconprojectsonic:
projectsonic Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012   Writer
For new members, this is a bit of a problem though... I was wondering if it would be a neat idea to go through an Introduction sequence to dA for those who first make an account in general. Along with introducing people to commonly missed rules such as art theft.
Reply
:iconnokari:
nokari Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2012  Professional Interface Designer
~welcome is the first thing new members are guided with. Unfortunately there's no inclusion of the help desk/FAQs.
Reply
:iconewm:
ewm Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for mentioning the welcome page. Hopefully in the future we can make the Help & FAQ pages more accessible. I do feel they are far too hidden and would love to make them a lot easier to find so people are able to locate information that'll help them. :)
Reply
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