An Open Letter to Yahoo! from a Moderator using the Recently Launched Neo Groups

September 5, 2013 | Yahoo! Groups  |  Comments Off on An Open Letter to Yahoo! from a Moderator using the Recently Launched Neo Groups

 

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By: Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

An Open Letter to Yahoo! from an Owner/ Moderator using the Recently Launched Neo Groups
September 5, 2013

I have had a lot of Yahoo! groups since 2008—probably well over 300 groups. I have one homeschooling group in each state, so that’s at least 50 groups.  I have groups for homeschooling upper grades, homeschooling lower grades, homeschooling middle grades, homeschooling several grades, homeschooling boys, homeschooling girls, homeschooling in Florida, homeschooling styles, homeschooling philosophies, secular, Christian, all-inclusive, buying & selling curricula and many, many more—but I think you get the idea. And if you don’t, you can view a complete listing of my groups, although it will need to be updated to note my recently deleted groups.

As noted, most of the groups are relating to homeschool/homeschooling, while there are some for parenting, Mommy groups, and all-inclusive to (all) educators: public, private, and homeschooling.  They have been maintained and almost completely free of spam: not only by myself, but by many moderators who also help with the groups by volunteering their time within the groups which they have joined as a member and found beneficial to their needs and interests.

I’m probably in the minority, but I really like most of the changes that Yahoo! has made recently—with the exception of the Manage My Groups page.

Within the first 24 hours of the Neo Groups roll out, I deleted quite a few of my Yahoo! groups because I was very frustrated that I could no longer see a notice (as previously available) for pending messages and pending members by scrolling the Manage My Groups page; and also because of the chaotic order of all of my groups, it was very difficult to separate the groups I owned, from the groups I moderated and the groups I was a member of, because all of the groups were now in no specific order at all, but rather mixed all together without rhyme or reason.  Since I have so many groups, I prefer scrolling through a central group listing location rather than have my email overflow with many, many group email notifications for pending members and pending messages.
I’ve also unsubscribed from all but 10 groups of which I am just a member.

Why would I make such decision to unsubscribe my membership from many groups and to delete so many groups of my own?

It was probably a hasty thing to do, and I will probably regret deleting them; but the thought of not being able to properly oversee groups that thousands of members have counted on for a level of quick responses, clean groups, and responsible management, left me feeling like I had no choice—or I would be letting the members down.  Maybe it’s true: haste makes waste.

But here’s the thing:

I, or the various groups’ moderators, must now go into each group individually to check for notifications of pending members and pending messages.  After checking 50 of my groups individually, my internet provider closes down my access to Yahoo! for a minimum of 24 hours. My internet provider blames Yahoo!’s security measures, and Yahoo! blames my internet provider’s security measures; and to be honest, I don’t really care which one it is, it just happens.

So the changes that Yahoo! have made with Neo Groups (for owners/moderators) will essentially cause my internet provider to shut me down for 24 hours; and then when I check the next set of 50 groups for pending members and pending messages, it will shut down again for another 24 hours.  Following this process, it would take me almost 14 days to check the status of 350 groups.  That’s unacceptable to me; and it’s certainly unacceptable to the many, many members of my groups.

The best solution is for me, and other owners/moderators with many groups, is to be able to view options for the viewing of (as previously established by Yahoo! and noted as “simple”, for example) our groups’ for pending members and pending messages by scrolling through the Manage My Groups page to see which groups have pending members and pending messages, and for the pages to show which do have pending items.  After all, as I mentioned, owners and moderators are volunteers for these groups; and I’d like think that it would be just as important for Yahoo! to make the Manage My Group’s page(s) as user-friendly, functional, and informative for group owners and moderators to utilize, as well as easy, fun, and interactive to Yahoo! groups members to use also.
Yahoo!MyGroupsNeoAndPrevious30August2013

As I mentioned, I am hoping that Yahoo! will provide an option for our Manage My Groups pages to have some choices: traditional simple, traditional expanded, neo simple, and neo expanded (as the neo allows for people to list groups in the order they prefer, although for me and the number of groups that I oversee the previous simple view works best). This would make the management of groups so much easier and efficient for groups owners and moderators.

I’m not here to knock the new Neo Groups; actually, the opposite: I’m happy to see Yahoo! update their system.  I’m especially happy to see Yahoo! put into place a newly modified protocol for abandoned groups (after all, Facebook, which is much newer, fills abandoned groups with a new owner rather quickly by just opening the opportunity with a simple message to the group: “Does anyone want to be the new group owner?”), so I’m glad to see Yahoo! move up to speed with things also by initiating a protocol for not just a new moderator, but a new owner for abandoned groups.  [It does make me a little annoyed, though, that I very recently unsubscribed from many of the (abandoned) groups that I was a member of because of the moderating difficulties that I’m having with the Neo Groups set up.]  Abandoned groups are a nuisance.

And I know that Yahoo! will fix the bugs and glitches that many of the groups are having, such as missing photos/albums, editing messages, automatic file notices, missing member email addresses, the chronological order of messages and other areas that people have complained about which have merit; I am just hoping that Yahoo! will listen to this area I have mentioned and that would be helpful to so many volunteering owners and moderators.

I have contacted Yahoo! directly on their forum.  I have asked for the members of my groups to also contact Yahoo! regarding this matter.  I’m glad to note that there was an outpouring of support for my request to Yahoo! by the members of my groups.  And I’m just as happy to see that my request for consideration to Yahoo! has moved from the back of the pack to the 1st page to be noticed by Yahoo!; but I remain—days later—saddened that my request has not had any response by Yahoo!‘s Groups Product Team—although all of the concerns before and after mine have been addressed in some form by Yahoo!’s Group Production Team (noting “gathering feedback”, “planned”, and “under review”).

At this point, I don’t know what will happen with the Yahoo! groups that I currently oversee.  I don’t think that it’s fair to expect the moderators of my groups, who volunteer their time, to take more time away from their families.  I don’t know if I should wait a little longer to see what decisions Yahoo!’s Group Production Team makes about my concern.  But I do know that I do not want for my groups to appear abandoned to the members of my groups because it will take so long to check each and every group individually for pending items.  That’s not fair, nor right, for the members who have been so loyal in my groups.

If you’d like to “vote” on the moderating suggestion that I’ve made to Yahoo!, and to perhaps take a moment longer to make a supportive comment, here’s the link to my concern on the Yahoo! Neo Groups forum:

http://yahoo.uservoice.com/forums/209451-us-groups/suggestions/4371682-neo-manage-my-groups-page-question

In the meantime, I leave this open letter to Yahoo! to consider modifying to Manage My Groups with options that would make moderating groups easier for group owners and moderators.

Thank you for listening.

–Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Find me on Twitter: @IAmSandwiched

We can chat about homeschooling on Facebook:
https://www.Facebook.com/TheSandwichedHomeschooler/
https://www.Facebook.com/Rebecca.TheSandwichedHomeschooler/

Please leave a comment about this article at:
http://a2zhomeschool.com/thesandwichedhomeschooler/an-open-letter-to-yahoo-from-an-owner-moderator-using-the-recently-launched-neo-groups/

Missing Adventures with My Kids

August 20, 2013 | Family Life  |  Comments Off on Missing Adventures with My Kids

 

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By: Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Missing Adventures with My Kids
August 20, 2013

Snail20August2013I just returned home from walking a mile this morning at the park. I’ve decided that I want to add a little more exercise to my daily routine; and if all goes as planned, I’ll walk a mile each morning and evening–with the hopes to build up to walking two miles twice a day.

My walking partner and I picked up this little creature–I love snails–along the path. I moved it over to a nice grassy area and out of the walk-way that it was crossing.  I hated the thought of it getting stepped on.

As I held the snail in my hand, I realized how much I miss the excitement of my kids finding creatures outside with me.  I miss the “Look Mommy!” moments.  I miss the dirt.  I miss the worms.  I miss the bugs.  

I never thought that I’d say those things.  Or at least say them out loud.  But I’d yell it out to the world if it would mean one more time of seeing my happy kids bringing some little creature over for me to observe.

My kids are now busy with teenage  related events in their lives.  They’re working.  They’re driving.  They’re hanging out at the mall with the friends.  Typical teenagers.

I guess that’s the way things are suppose to be at this time in our lives: me holding onto memories; and the kids making new ones of their own.

–Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Find me on Twitter: @IAmSandwiched

We can chat about homeschooling on Facebook:
https://www.Facebook.com/TheSandwichedHomeschooler/
https://www.Facebook.com/Rebecca.TheSandwichedHomeschooler/

Please leave a comment about this article at:
http://a2zhomeschool.com/thesandwichedhomeschooler/missing-adventures-with-my-kids/

Maybe I Shouldn’t Be Annoyed

August 19, 2013 | Homeschool Support  |  Comments Off on Maybe I Shouldn’t Be Annoyed

 

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By: Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Maybe I Shouldn’t Be Annoyed
August 19, 2013

NoFirstDayOfHomeschoolingFor 13 years our house has had a “first day of homeschooling” celebration; but this is the first year since our homeschooling began that we have not had one. Walter graduated from homeschooling in May; Charlie is starting dual enrollment at SPC today and doesn’t need me to oversee his homeschooling directly anymore. I have decided that I want to stay active in the homeschooling community. It’s a pet peeve of mine how many veteran homeschooling parents leave the homeschooling community once their kids are done and don’t hang around to help the newbies or those that just need some guidance and support. But I’ve been drawing a blank at how to stay involved within the community–on more than just an “online-email-corresponding-with-a-newbie-homeschooling-parent-in-distress” kind of way. I have several local homeschooling groups within the county that I live, and a few in the surrounding counties, that I’d especially like to move back into an active meet up/park day/play date status again; but I don’t want to be the creeper old lady hanging out at the park without any kids. Maybe I can arrange park days and offer to help/mentor/tutor those families who show up and want it? I don’t know. I’d like to keep my blog going and fresh; but again, I don’t know. So maybe I shouldn’t be annoyed with the veteran homeschoolers who walked away–maybe they couldn’t figure out how to keep involved with homeschooling community either.

–Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Find me on Twitter: @IAmSandwiched

We can chat about homeschooling on Facebook:
https://www.Facebook.com/TheSandwichedHomeschooler/
https://www.Facebook.com/Rebecca.TheSandwichedHomeschooler/

Please leave a comment about this article at:
http://a2zhomeschool.com/thesandwichedhomeschooler/maybe-I-shouldnt-be-annoyed/

 

Bargain and Free Books On Amazon Kindle Today 8-6-2013

August 6, 2013 | Kindle Freebies  |  Comments Off on Bargain and Free Books On Amazon Kindle Today 8-6-2013

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By: Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Bargain and Free Books On Amazon Kindle Today 8-6-2013
*Affiliate Links Included*
August 6, 2013
3:15 P.M.

Today’s post includes 10 free Amazon Kindle eBooks.

As a friendly reminder, if you do not have a Kindle, you can download the Kindle reading application to use on your Smartphone (iPhone, iPod touch, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry), Computer (MAC, Windows 8, Windows 7, XP & Vista), and Tablets (Android, Windows 8, iPad) at the following link: Free Reading Apps.

As usual, I’d appreciate it if you’d take a moment to share this freebie list with your friends, Mommy groups, homeschool groups, freebie groups, coupon groups, Facebook and Twitter friends, and anyone else you think might benefit from my hours and hours of scrolling, cutting and pasting of these currently free eBook finds! If you are reading this on my blog’s websiteFacebook page or on my Twitter page (#IAmSandwiched), I would appreciate your clicking the “Like” , “Share” or “Retweet” button so that your friends can take advantage of these deals also!

But, on the negative…don’t wait to check these out or share them with your friends, because Amazon Kindle free eBooks do not stay free very long!

Oh, and in case your missed some previous posts, I encourage you to check them out and see if any of the previous freebies are still free! (It happens, especially with the classics!) August 5, 2013 Freebie list  This page should link you to the previous day’s listing also.

Please note: Although I strive to keep the Bargain and Free Kindle eBooks Daily List current and up-to-date, Amazon often changes prices and details without warning; so I suggest for you to check the list daily.  I have not read, reviewed, or researched many of the eBooks which are on today’s list of Bargain and Free Kindle eBooks; I am simply listing available free and bargain priced items (items listing for less than $5.00) from multiple genres which are available for you to choose from–saving you the search time for them.  I do not control the content, length, or language in these books.  

Today’s Freebies:
1. College Admission Policies Demystified: Understanding Homeschool Requirements for Getting In (Coffee Break Books)

2. Read to Lead

3. Second Grade Math Over 200 Practice Worksheets with Answers

4. Fun with Okapis (Series – Educational and Homeschool)

5. Live Simple: 31 Tips To Declutter, Simplify, And Organize Your Life

6. Natural Cleaninig Recipes: Eco-friendly Natural Cleaning Solutions

7. CONTAINER GARDENING: IDEAS & WOODWORKING PLANS HOW TO PRODUCE MORE ORGANIC VEGETABLES IN LESS SPACE

8. ADHD Children: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Treatment

9. New Beginnings for Divorcing Parents – Workbook Co-Parenting Divorce Workbook

10. That’s Not MY Kid: One Simple Step to Stop Temper Tantrums Forever (parenting with love and logic)

 

 

 

And here’s some bargain Kindle eBooks (less than $5.00) which look interesting:

Mom (or Dad): Don’t Go It Alone! ($0.99)
College Planning For HomeSchoolers ($0.99)
Our Best Homeschool Activities EVER! (Easy Homeschooling) ($2.99)
Preparing for College: What to Bring to College and what to Leave at Home ($0.99)
Sons of Kronos: The Clever Student’s Guide to Greek Mythology ($0.99)
Stages of Homeschooling: Letting Go (Book 3) ($0.99)
A Child’s History of England (Illustrated) ($0.99)
A Medieval Family: The Pastons of Fifteenth-Century England ($0.99)
College Planning For HomeSchoolers ($0.99)
Wild Whales! Learn About Whales And Learn To Read – The Learning Club! (45+ Photos of Whales) ($0.99)

APlusTutors Interactive Math: Use coupon code SANDWICH at the link for an additional 20% off the lowest listed prices on all software products.  http://www.aplustutorsoft.com/

–Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

This post contains affiliate links.

Find me on Twitter: @IAmSandwiched

We can chat about homeschooling on Facebook:
https://www.Facebook.com/TheSandwichedHomeschooler/
https://www.Facebook.com/Rebecca.TheSandwichedHomeschooler/

Please leave a comment about this article at:
http://a2zhomeschool.com/thesandwichedhomeschooler/bargain-and-free-books-on-amazon-kindle-today-8-6-2013

Bargain and Free Books On Amazon Kindle Today 8-5-2013

August 5, 2013 | Kindle Freebies  |  Comments Off on Bargain and Free Books On Amazon Kindle Today 8-5-2013

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By: Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

Bargain and Free Books On Amazon Kindle Today 8-5-2013
*Affiliate Links Included*
August 5, 2013
9:45 P.M.

Today’s post includes 10 free Amazon Kindle eBooks.

As a friendly reminder, if you do not have a Kindle, you can download the Kindle reading application to use on your Smartphone (iPhone, iPod touch, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry), Computer (MAC, Windows 8, Windows 7, XP & Vista), and Tablets (Android, Windows 8, iPad) at the following link: Free Reading Apps.

As usual, I’d appreciate it if you’d take a moment to share this freebie list with your friends, Mommy groups, homeschool groups, freebie groups, coupon groups, Facebook and Twitter friends, and anyone else you think might benefit from my hours and hours of scrolling, cutting and pasting of these currently free eBook finds! If you are reading this on my blog’s websiteFacebook page or on my Twitter page (#IAmSandwiched), I would appreciate your clicking the “Like” , “Share” or “Retweet” button so that your friends can take advantage of these deals also!

But, on the negative…don’t wait to check these out or share them with your friends, because Amazon Kindle free eBooks do not stay free very long!

Oh, and in case your missed some previous posts, I encourage you to check them out and see if any of the previous freebies are still free! (It happens, especially with the classics!) August 4, 2013 Freebie list  This page should link you to the previous day’s listing also.

Please note: Although I strive to keep the Bargain and Free Kindle eBooks Daily List current and up-to-date, Amazon often changes prices and details without warning; so I suggest for you to check the list daily.  I have not read, reviewed, or researched many of the eBooks which are on today’s list of Bargain and Free Kindle eBooks; I am simply listing available free and bargain priced items (items listing for less than $5.00) from multiple genres which are available for you to choose from–saving you the search time for them.  I do not control the content, length, or language in these books.  

Today’s Freebies:
1. The Top 50 COOLEST Sharks in the World!

2. The Essential Interactive Guide To Sharks & Whales For Kids Bundle

3. The Essential Interactive Guide To Dinosaurs, Dolphins, Sharks, Spiders & Whales For Kids Bundle

4. Some People Die Quick (Book 2 of the Jay Leicester Mysteries Series)

5. The Top 50 COOLEST Sharks in the World!

6. Simple, Healthy, Cheap! A Simple Life’s Guide To Home Economics: Beginning Cooking

7. The Joy of Life

8. From The Trash Man To The Cash Man

9. Picky Eaters: 26 Kids Recipes That They’ll Actually Eat

10. Knowing Autism

 

 

 

And here’s some bargain Kindle eBooks (less than $5.00) which look interesting:

Mom (or Dad): Don’t Go It Alone! ($0.99)
College Planning For HomeSchoolers ($0.99)
Our Best Homeschool Activities EVER! (Easy Homeschooling) ($2.99)
Preparing for College: What to Bring to College and what to Leave at Home ($0.99)
Sons of Kronos: The Clever Student’s Guide to Greek Mythology ($0.99)
Stages of Homeschooling: Letting Go (Book 3) ($0.99)
A Child’s History of England (Illustrated) ($0.99)
A Medieval Family: The Pastons of Fifteenth-Century England ($0.99)
College Planning For HomeSchoolers ($0.99)
Wild Whales! Learn About Whales And Learn To Read – The Learning Club! (45+ Photos of Whales) ($0.99)

APlusTutors Interactive Math: Use coupon code SANDWICH at the link for an additional 20% off the lowest listed prices on all software products.  http://www.aplustutorsoft.com/

–Rebecca Miller
The Sandwiched Homeschooler

This post contains affiliate links.

Find me on Twitter: @IAmSandwiched

We can chat about homeschooling on Facebook:
https://www.Facebook.com/TheSandwichedHomeschooler/
https://www.Facebook.com/Rebecca.TheSandwichedHomeschooler/

Please leave a comment about this article at:
http://a2zhomeschool.com/thesandwichedhomeschooler/bargain-and-free-books-on-amazon-kindle-today-8-5-2013

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