The wild search for alternatives to Ning is keeping many social network creators more than busy, especially in the educational sector. Migrating your social network from Ning is a daunting task. Several services have rushed to offer you a “Ning-Importer”, which in many cases just sends out invitation messages. If it does some kind of import, it will probably scramble non-English characters. You also have to check if profile questions are imported properly, in most cases they are not. Multiple choice profile questions? Not so easy, either. At least until now.
Ning to mixxt member import
We have just released a Ning member import that does all that and more. You even get to choose which profile questions are imported and what type of profile question it should be. The Ning-Import to mixxt lets you do some nifty stuff:
- Upload the memberdata.csv file
- Review the memberlist that is going to be imported (user data view of all records)
- Review the profile questions, set question types
- Automatically detect multiple choice answer options (you must select “multiple choice” for the detection to work)
- Add further questions and multiple choice answers on-the-fly
- Sort, rearrange and rename the profile questions
- Automatically join the imported members into your network
- Imported members automatically receive an activation email with a direct link to the activation system
- Soon: custom messages for the activation emails
Your members will be able to login with their email address and choose a new password. Please keep in mind that you might run into legal issues if you import the member data to another service and don’t ask them for confirmation of the Terms of Service as well as the Privacy Policies. This is why the importer will not automatically activate the member accounts, they will have to activate their account themselves with one click. This keeps you on the safe side and respects the privacy of your members without impeding your networking goals.
Give it a try and create your own social network with mixxt! You can learn more about mixxt here: Welcome to a new social networking experience and a reliable Ning-Importer
Importing Ning content
Now this is a different topic altogether. Ning does not offer any content export at the moment. Grabbing content via the RSS feeds is not possible, as most feeds neither contain the full content nor the older posts. This leaves creators in a bit of a pickle. We have tried various options, but Ning will have to follow up on its promise to help creators export their content so we can provide a reliable content import. This leaves us with one major question most social networking alternatives will be asking themselves: What content do Ning network creators want to migrate? Are Ning creators interested in migrating blog posts, events, images or something else?
Ning content importing survey
Many services and developers are wondering what kind of content Ning network creators want to migrate to other solutions. We have come up with a small survey to help developers and services all over the world in providing content import features. Most of all the survey should help the Ning network creators themselves, as they will have a better chance of getting more options to migrate to. The results of the survey will be published (anonymized), so please invest two minutes of your time to tell us about your requirements: The Ning content importing survey
Premium migration service for selected networks
mixxt will help 20 selected networks to migrate to mixxt. The only thing you have to do to apply for this migration is to enter the survey about Ning content importing.
Ning exports and Backup options
Apart from the member data export in the Admin area of your Ning network, you can get a full data backup of your Ning by signing a release form and sending it to Ning via fax/mail: http://help.ning.com/?faq=3772 Your network will be deleted 30 days after requesting the data release, so you will have to close the network. Should you “only” want a backup for security reasons, the options slim down even further. You could automatically crawl and download all pages of your network by using a website archiving system (Windows: HTTrack Mac: SiteCrawler). This will not help you import your content to an alternative service, but it will at least save everything to your hard drive.
We believe mixxt is one of the best services when it comes to micro social networking, collaboration and the organization of content, events and groups. But more important than that is the necessity of free choice. We want you to have choices, one of them being mixxt.