The new forum - a brillant proof of the Peter Principle

Ridiculous. If the god awful stats page update wasn’t enough, now this. Good luck. This was a fantastic forum.

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Dear Dev/Ops

I dont feel that the new format is bad, but sure it is so different it is causing frustration.
Needs some tutorials, as well as time to help change old habits and adjust to new style.
New one has some glitches and bugs and some facilities are missing (as usual with every new design). Hopefully these will be fixed in due course.

Something I noted which needs attention of Dev/Ops:
(1) In old format, after writing a post with images, links and code, I used to click “Preview” button, and see how the post will be actually displayed. Quiet often I used to edit the draft and “Preview” again before finally posting. I cannot find the “Preview” button now.

(2) Old posts, which have images displayed in-line by tag [ img ]image url[ /img ]. After transition to new format, some images are still in-line, but some images are not displayed, only the the image url is there.

I will post any more bugs or deficiencies when I note these.


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Hey abcd567

The preview is still available, it is the box on the right hand side, it might be hidden, check on the lower right-hand side and click image incase the preview box is hidden.

Pictures will be shown and format too. As you can see from this screen shot:

For old posts that aren’t showing the images can you please send the link, we actively working on fixing any images that were caught during the migration.



Hi Ben
Thanks for prompt reply. You are right, the preview is available as you have shown, but in desktop version only.

When I use my phone, it is not there. It was my mistake that I did not specifically mentioned “mobile” when posting.

This will require some time. A quick check of the following thread shows many images not being displayed:

Three Easy DIY Antennas for Beginners
Post #2 -SPIDER - two images out of six not displayed
Post#3 - CANTENNA - five images out of tweleve not displayed
Post #8 - QUICK SPIDER - three images out of nine not displayed

Linking for benefit of all, the short Tutorial/Help by Flightaware Staff beno56 posted in another thread:

… missing the shortcuts for: use more than 50% of screen for content, display an obvious structure, show all posts with broken picture links, link from user to his site, etc. etc. - and btw. who really has a passion in learning shortcuts for a user forum :)))))))))))))))))


The new format is not bad. Some aspects of it are better than old one. We will gradually get accustomed to it.

The problem is in the poor migration:
(1) A large number of images are not displayed, only their URL is there.
(2) Sticky threads are no more sticky.
(3) All links to posts are broken. When I click a link in a post to another post, this is what I get
Broken link to Flightaware posts

… i think they overlooked that those are mostly anchors-links

You are right. The migration process has changed the URL of all posts. However, it has taken all the user provided links inside a post as links to external sites, and did not update these. As a result the links to other posts are broken now

Below is the original URL of TWEAK-1 post.
I have added this URL in other posts before migration: (Click it to see what happens)

My added URL did not change during migration. It is still the above one, while migration process has changed the URL of the TWEAK-1 post as below: (Click it to see what happens)

Personally I much prefer the old forum and would love to know WHY the change to this mess!?

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Permalinks to posts were intended to be preserved as part of the migration and we are currently troubleshooting that with the forum vendor.

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This is what you get when you hire $500/hour consultants advising you that the net worth of the company is hugely dependent on the level of innovation. The few consultants that know the difference between the core infrastructure and the user forum software probably told management that the current tool attracts xx% more visitors and yy% more registrations.

I can almost visualise the powerpoints. What are your assets: information. Who provides … etc etc


I’ve been to this migration dance as an admin a few times on 3-5,000 member groups in another industry. It’s never easy on anyone at that time.

The undeniable reality is that many of the oldest most established forums in any interest around the world have closed or migrated to become private or closed Facebook groups irrespective of the loss of some functionality in FB groups compared to forums. The biggest loss end users experience is the ability to go to different topic categories but still people see to get over this and still prefer to be on a FB group over forums these days.

Regrettably for the owners of the FB group at this time they are unable to monetize their FB group(s) to the degree they can their forums (phpBB or Xenforo).

Regardless of initial complaints from end user experience or loss of some functionality on Facebook groups compared to their “old forum” they get used to it and besides most of us are already used to participating on Facebook groups. The whole world is mostly used to it now.

Underneath all this are the metrics that the website owners present to advertisers to justify their advertising spends with FA. Private FB groups don’t attract the Google Juice like a website does. This is not a barrier, it’s just a challenge.

IMO FA situation would be best suited to a hybrid solution of using a closed FB group for discussion and then the rest remain on the website. This will still allow revenue from the website and with proper information and promotion of this from the FB site to the FA website will attract even more people to both.
Even as dumbed down as FB groups are I wouldn’t fight the trend too much because when administered correctly these FB groups will result in even more traffic of the right type to the website.

I humbly suggest that all of us should hold short of being too critical and expect some turbulence during the climb.

Thank you to the admins for taking this migration on no matter how it ends up.


… facebook - wow - that’s cutting edge :joy:

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No it absolutely isn’t. But it draws participation and participation is what fuels the engine.

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… draws participation from those who are still on vhs-tapes etc. and fuels a geriatric engine.


Yep… I’m reminded of a work assignment that I had at Delco Electronics some years ago. The company motto was “The Automotive Electronics Capitol of the World!” and we were using VAX/VMS systems.

On a terminal, you could type a line of text and then wait for the cursor to print the text onto the screen. If you didn’t show up for work at least 30 minutes early, you’d get an error notifying you that the maximum number of users had been exceeded - so you couldn’t log into your account.

You’d see people working in their offices, reach over and tap the space bar every 10 minutes so they wouldn’t be logged out and lose access to the system.

Over Christmas vacation, Ross Perot’s EDS group updated the system with new software and expanded memory. When we came back in January, nobody knew how to use their terminals anymore and the system crashed about every hour on-the-hour. I wasn’t the only person to gladly bid farewell to the VAX/11 DecTYPE!


Is this change about generating revenue? Isn’t it more about cost saving by saving IT the trouble of maintaining the forum themselves?

From the ADS-B Flighting Tracking side, so far it has been a way for people feeding data to discuss problems and help each other with difficulties they encountered, with the help of the ever present ob j kenobi. This in itself created value for Flightaware.
To me, already it seems it is a lot quiter than it used to be, let us just hope this is temporarily and has no effect on the number of people feeding data because they are losing interest without the community feeling or do not get help enought help with problems they encounter.