The site has been live for almost three weeks, and people are getting to know it. We’ve had a lot of very positive feedback, which we can share in the future. Many say they are finding the menus easy to navigate and the site well organized. For the most part, people are finding what they’re looking for. The design has gone over well, including the fresh, clean look and simplified Rotary homepage.
We’ve also had some constructive criticism, lively dialog and frustration, as people deal with the pains of using something new. We know that despite the best laid plans (and rigorous quality testing), technology brings its share of surprises. We’re listening to it all.
With that in mind, we’d like to catch you up on the biggest issues, and how we’re addressing them.
The good news is we’ve had a strong response to registration – more than 27,000 have created accounts and gotten access to their customized My Rotary dashboard, profile and the Rotary community.
The downside is we’ve had some bumps along the way. Everyone has to register for the new site, even existing Member Access users, and we didn’t make this clear enough. We have stepped up our communications on this point. Second, a small percentage of users have encountered registration issues, most commonly getting signed into the site without complete credentials. These users are running into a lot of “Access Denied” errors. If this happens to you, sign out and sign back in, and in most cases the issue is fixed. We are also actively working on a more permanent solution.
We’ve seen some cases of people unable to complete “Account Setup” because of page display issues and are working on a fix for this.
We had some hard choices to make in building a modern, profile-driven, responsive site, and one was not to invest in the experience for IE8, which is being phased out. The new Rotary.org is optimized for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and IE9 or higher; all can be downloaded for free. Currently IE8 users are blocked from the site; however, we’re close to releasing fixes that will allow the site to function on IE8 in a very basic mode, so these users can enter.
Users of IE9 and higher may see “compatibility view” warnings, which can be sidestepped by following the screen instructions in most cases. The browser wars are back, and we understand that things are going to be painful for Windows XP users. Did we mention you can download Chrome and Firefox for free?
For some logged-out users, the site language reverts to English no matter what they do to change the settings. This is another front-burner fix that is being worked aggressively.
Page and document redirects
The old site had more than 34,000 pages and 10,000 documents. There are many, many links to these URLs from club and district websites, search engines, and other sites. We understand that, and have put in place redirects for top pages. Redirecting all 34,000 doesn’t make sense, but we are committed to having the most relevant ones work.
In addition, documents had a bug for about a week that prevented them from redirecting, so those appeared broken (it has been fixed). If you visit a page and get a “page not found message,” it’s best to go to the homepage and begin navigating the site as designed. Create new bookmarks and links. We recommend you link to pages, not documents, since documents can be renamed and removed from the library.
Share your feedback
We are reading and responding to all the emails that are sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, so if you have something to share please send it in. You can also share your input – and see previous questions and answers – in the Official Rotary.org Website Feedback group in the Rotary community. As ever, we really want to hear what you think.