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In Progress Tapatalk users - please read and comment

Post in 'New Forum Hints and your Questions & Suggestions!' started by webbie, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Craig, I'm probably one of your most frequent Tapatalk users (would actually be interested in seeing the stat's on that), and we had good reason to go to it with the old forum software. However, I just went back and checked the forum in Safari on my iphone, and it's flawless. I say drop Tapatalk like a hot potato.

    As to your question, I am more reluctant to answer posts on the iPhone, preferring to wait until I'm at a real keyboard, unless it's something short and sweet.

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  2. RKBAGUY

    RKBAGUY Member

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but it was my understanding that the security issues were resolved with the Tapatalk plug in.

    That said, there's more to the Tapatalk app than just formatting. I frequent about eight forums, and having them all in the same place is a huge benefit. Also, the manner in which attachments and images are posted as it relates to operating with the phone is made more convenient.

    That said, do what you must, but I'd consult with other vBulletin operators who also run Tapatalk to be sure the concerns are not conflated and that you're making the best decision possible.
  3. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    You say there is only 35 TT posters??? What did you have before? Seems like many of the TT users left and went to Scotty's forum! There is definitely less folks that post as quickly now. I guess less folks with phones frequent now???
  4. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    When you upload pics to tapatalk, BTW, they are not on our forum. When and if tapatalk goes away (and no little company like that lasts forever), those images will go away. That's a downside, IMHO.

    But the whole reason I started this thread was to discuss and listen. It's not going away (tt) anytime real soon....just thinking out loud. Allowing some company I don't know (and don't trust) access to most all of our data seems crazy in the long run...

    It may seem going backwards.....but at the same time, we upgraded the forum to a mobile theme 45 days ago, which does go at least part of the way toward making the mobile experience better.
  5. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Nope. This is over many months. Average DAILY users of the tapatalk app are about 35-40.

    But MOBILE users are about 20% or more....

    Specifically....here is tapatalk chart (right) and ONE DAY of mobile users (left). No, a dozen folks going to a chat room doesn't move the needle.....

    To those non-technical, what this says is that most users of phones and tablet are using browers. In fact, it's like 95% plus plus plus plus.

    Oh, BTW, thanks for all the feedback. That's why I started this thread....nothing is happening soon anyway!

    Screen Shot 2013-10-13 at 9.33.40 PM.png Screen Shot 2013-10-13 at 9.32.03 PM.png
  6. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    When you talk about security issues - it's not the bugs that are in tapatalk as much as the fact that they (again, a Chinese company I don't know from adam) have files located inside my server which relay 100% of our data including private data (mods rooms, etc.) to the cloud and to their servers. Basically, they have the keys to the city.

    I checked out conversations about this and most of the other forum owners said that since the mobile skin upgrade they see little reason for TT.

    I do know it's handy. But they'd also done stuff lately like throwing their own ads on it, etc...

    My concern is that I don't want to go years and get everyone more hooked on it...uploading images to THEIR servers, etc. and then yank it. I think the images would then disappear from our forum (or if they closed up shop, etc. the same - the images are not on hearth.com)....

    I think they give tt away completely free now.....so they are going to prob make their money from ads in the future. No one works for free...well, except the mods here and all you nice members!
  7. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    I was confused by ur post as well TT stacked the graphics not left and right.
  8. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    TT is showing 35-50 users per day over that last number of days.
    The other listing is our mobile visits in ONE day.
  9. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    TT is free I have the free one. But now it tells me its out of date and wants me to buy the new version for $3. That is if I click my icon on the phone it tells me that and sends me directly to the play store. The only way I'm on my phone and TT now is that I am clicking the notification, it somehow let's u into it and bypasses the store and that message. Not free! !
    webbie likes this.
  10. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Just testing a photo upload from Safari...

    Now testing photo edit/swap...

    image.jpg
  11. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Interesting aside - tapatalk also does not show up in our google or quantcast statistics! Not that the average user cares about that, but it's another example of them creating their own separate universe and feeding our content to it.

    TT users probably don't see our pop-up notices, etc. (like the announcement of the DC meetup, etc.)

    None of these are deal killers, just noting them for the record.
  12. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, that image is on our servers...which is good. That means it doesn't go away.
  13. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Another downside to Tapatalk is that, while it would let me upload a file to your server with my initial posting, it would NOT let me edit. That's because Tapatalk would force you to host images on their server when editing a post, something you could only override on the original posting.
  14. extendaflue

    extendaflue Super Moderator

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    Test as civilian (webbie disguised)
    image.jpg
    Yeah works fine on iphone w safari
  15. RKBAGUY

    RKBAGUY Member

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    See, this is what I mean about needing current information and not falling prey to hearsay. The photo below was uploaded directly from my phone via Tapatalk and is NOT hosted on their server. Users are given a choice of whether they want their photo on the Tapatalk server, or the target forum. So, if the operating presumptions about security are as erroneous as the presumptions about photos, it suggests to me that the concerns might be misplaced.

    Just sayin'.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Oct 14, 2013
    clemsonfor and UMainah like this.
  16. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah, I saw that one was here. The concerns of security are not based around the images. It's based upon a single small chinese company having large amounts of code inside my protected directories.

    That's really the singular issue. Trust. It has two parts - trust in that their coding is airtight (they already have had some problems related to that) and then trust they they themselves won't do things which are contrary to our interests.

    Are their interests the same as mine? I'm asking the question, not giving an answer...
  17. RKBAGUY

    RKBAGUY Member

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    I completely and totally understand the question and underlying concerns. Having run vBulletin and other sites before, I'm more than just passing familiar with the issues.

    Here are just a few thoughts in response by way of putting things into perspective. Not giving answers, just asking questions...

    1. Every web based software product has potential security issues, vBulletin/SMF/PHPbb included, and so do their plugins. Is not so much focus on one particular component perhaps disproportional?
    2. This forum isn't a banking, government or corporate intranet. We're not dealing with matters of state, money, investments or other highly personalized data. That suggests to me Hearth.com would be a low priority for the developers of Tapatalk should they be bent on malicious intent, which should address the 'conflicting interest' concern.
    3. While we Americans are rightly skeptical of Chinese products based on our recent experiences with pet food, truck tires and other consumer product disasters, again - this is a forum (not an airliner that might drop out of the sky), based on a software product, thus corrections and fixes can be made without grievous harm to the customers. I'm sure you make regular backups of the code and mySQL database (I used to do so every night via script) so even if there is an exploit found, you can recover fairly easily with minimal data loss.
    4. Other forums which deal with far more sensitive subjects and information such as firearm-related sites I belong to (HighRoad, FiringLine, Usual Suspects Network, Smith&Wesson forum, etc.) don't seem concerned about Tapatalk at all and their forum administrators have a far greater duty of care to those of us who own armaments, so again I think the worry over Tapatalk's plugin is perhaps disproportionate.
    5. In a brief web search, it seems that all the prior concerns about exploits and security date back to 2010, making it nearly a solid three years that information is relevant. Whatever decision you make, be sure it's based on current data.

    At the end of the day, what's the worst that can possibly happen? However, that said, it's your site, so you need to make the decision that's right for you.
  18. wolfonahill

    wolfonahill New Member

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    I use TT for hearth.com about 90% of the time and if TT was dropped my visits would drop just that much.
    However I do completely understand webbie's concerns. If there was a quick loading app that performed in the same way as TT I would gladly use that instead;)...
    clemsonfor and holstein like this.
  19. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    You missed what I was saying. Try changing that photo to a different one, using Tapatalk. I stated that I could upload photos to the hearth.com server, but that once set, they could not be edited / changed, using Tapatalk.
  20. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks for all the input so far! Nothing is happening before at least the holidays...and maybe never. It's just something I wanted member input on...

    I use it myself once in a great while on my iphone- but am going to try to use the browser just so I see it's ups and downs.
  21. RKBAGUY

    RKBAGUY Member

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    That's a functionality issue, not a security issue.
  22. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Of course. Never stated otherwise. Maybe you could step down off your, "See, this is what I mean about needing current information and not falling prey to hearsay," soap box.
  23. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    I gave up on TT, it seemed like every other month I had to uninstall and reinstall, even then it would stop working, or loose forums, that was the Chrome app though
  24. RKBAGUY

    RKBAGUY Member

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    I'm trying to keep the dialog focused on the original intent of the thread, which was to address security issues, based on a decade of experience running forums myself. It's my way of saying 'thanks' by offering experience back to the forum. Make of it what you will.
    clemsonfor, wishlist and Justin M like this.
  25. tfdchief

    tfdchief Minister of Fire

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    Just for the record. I never use it, and wish my phone would quit asking me if I want to.::-)
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