Big sigh... ok, now we are ready go! As you all know, Phil (founder of WTR) had stepped aside after years of hard work to build this great service for worship leaders everywhere. Nathan Gifford, myself, took on the ownership and ongoing management of WTR. The service that this site runs on was coughing a bit even before the ownership transfer, but shortly after we made the big announcement that WTR was here to stay and under new ownership... the site went offline. :/

Well, both myself and Phil have been working hard to resolve this. You wouldn't expect this transfer to have been such an ordeal... but it was. Our hands were tied for a bit, but we worked together and finally got everything resolved!

Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience while WTR was unavailable! No worries now though... as all is online and ready for your use.

I'm very excited about taking this on and look forward to what the days ahead have in store for all of us! Take a minute and check out my profile page if you care to find out a little more about me... and please introduce yourself and feel free to ask any questions or contact me for any reason as we move on together. Thanks and be blessed!

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Congratulations, looking forward to seeing what becomes of the site.

Good to see the site back online!!  I'll try to stop by and post occasionally...  I wonder whether the front page is quite right at the moment, there are just too many different discussion caregories to choose from, which makes browsing difficult.  I wonder about either (a) reducing the number of categories, or (b) reverting to the previous front page with the latest discussions?

Hey Daniel! We agree... and have already been working on that a bit. Some categories were removed already and some revamped a bit. We will continue and do ongoing maintenance as we work to make this site the best resource it can be! Thanks for being a part and we hope to see you here regularly. :)

Daniel Read said:

Good to see the site back online!!  I'll try to stop by and post occasionally...  I wonder whether the front page is quite right at the moment, there are just too many different discussion caregories to choose from, which makes browsing difficult.  I wonder about either (a) reducing the number of categories, or (b) reverting to the previous front page with the latest discussions?

Hi Nathan

Any further thoughts on this?  At the moment, I think people (certainly me) are tending to just look at the recent activity on the left of the front page and see what people are commenting on.  But typically that only flags up one or two discussions at most, and it would be good to see the last 10 or so

... perhaps it's worth trying going back to the "latest discussions" box with a link to a "browse by category" page?

TBH there's not much going on still, and using recent activity covers at least a couple of weeks most of the time. *Personally* I don't think personal messages should appear in that area, but that's how things are right now.

The site activity has definitely increased from where it has been for a long time. It seems to go in spurts, but it's reviving so that's good! The activity feed on the left is good for now at least. It would be nice if this system had the categories but showed the latest activity of each one. That's not an option though. Still hoping for a way to move to a better overall platform... unless this one improves. I'll chew on this a bit and see what else maybe could be done. Thanks for the input!

Agree that the list on the left isn't working out real well, and if this site ever becomes as active as 9000+ members would support, it'll be a problem.

One thing I would suggest is that the recent activity list doesn't really need to include tweets advertising the site...

Something that used to be done differently was that instead of having the line of icons for the latest new members (or members who have most recently posted something), that line was used for icons for the latest forums that had been updated.  So if somebody posted something to the songwriting forum, the first icon in that list would take you to the songwriting forum.  That would seem like it's more useful, If I see the songwriting icon up there, I know there's been some activity in that area recently and I can go check on it.

Hey Nathan, thanks for all your hard work. God bless you, and best wishes for the WTR site.

Saw that you sent out a tweet about "indie" worship songs.  I know we've got plenty of forums already, but it might make sense to create a new forum for "original worship songs" and then maybe combine a couple of the other forums if need be.  This would be a little different from "songwriting critiques" so it might deserve its own place... here's a song I wrote, use it if you want to.  I'd suggest limiting it to original worship songs (i.e., no covers of "Oceans") that are available for other WLs to use... maybe encourage people to attach an mp3 (so we could download it) rather than linking to a soundclick file or something.

I know that a lot of WtR members post songs on their profile, but there's really not an easy way to "browse" those songs without going to each individual user's profile to see what they have.  I've suggested this before, but maybe we could have "WtR Radio," sort of a random stream of these songs that somebody could come listen to, with enough information that if I hear a song I like, I can figure out who to contact about it.  Or maybe just a "browse" page that lists all songs by author or title or something, where you can just click on songs and listen to them...

For the record, we actually have used some WtR songs with our band - "Take Me Away" by Joshua Halls, "Be With Me" by Joe Aiken, "This Is Love" by Rick Gregory, maybe one or two others.  These turned up in the songwriting forum, but it would be cool to hear finished songs, as well.

Sort of off subject, but... now and then I think about what might generate a bit more activity on this site... it does seem like WtR kinda focuses on the "practical" - organization, instruments, songwriting, etc. - and I wonder whether there would be activity if we had a forum dedicated more to "personal worship" - I don't even quite know how it might function, it might be a place for people who want to talk more about "what it means to worship in spirit and in truth" and not so much about "where is a good place to buy guitar strings?"

On Daniel's post about categories vs. recent posts... the way it was for a while was the list of posts down the center was "most recent posts" but then across the top, where the "new member icons" are now, there were icons that went to the different categories, like, click this picture and you go to the songwriting forum.  So that might be another way of organizing this that could work.  I like being able to jump to "what's new in songwriting," but I could be wrong about what works best for everybody...

Yes, we'll be working to bring more emphasis in that area, making easier to showcase original worship songs. We've made some changes to the home page of this site already, and more will come, but the platform that this site runs on is very limiting. If we can find a way to move to something better without losing the years of discussion, we'll do so. One way or another, we'll continue to work on improving the functionality of this site. Thanks!

I have thought about this and wonder ‘How important is it Nathan to keep hold of years of discussion’?  It may be a good idea to have a good clean up start over with new discussions. Reading back there is some great stuff in there but so long as you give members plenty of notice so that they could copy and paste anything that they would like to keep, then I for one would have no problem with doing away with old discussions.  What do other people think?

This is a great blessing... loving this site so much..


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