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.
The lifestream on the main page is the eye-catcher of many mixxt communities. It shows teasers of the latest events and recent changes and leads the visitor to the respective entries or member profiles. Until now – depending on the privacy settings of each community – it automatically displayed new content (like images, forum or blog/posts or wiki pages) as well as new members, friendships or member profile updates from a period of 14 days.
Since last week’s update, the new “Lifestream Administration” allows all admins who have created their own community with mixxt for free to determine what content (selected by content modules) and how many entries and/or days should be displayed. The “Lifestream” entry in the community administration leads to the following view:
In addition to this configuration, we have added a feature which virtually revolutionizes our lifestream: We set up a “Shoutbox” for the administrator, who is now able to post urgent news, comments or instructions straight into the lifestream. This gives the community manager the chance to distribute targeted information to all members in a comfortable but unobtrusive way. Read more »
In our previous blogpost we have already announced some changes within the current update. The privacy settings are very complex and detailed, therefore they deserve their own entry. If you click on “mixxt settings” in the upper green mixxt bar in one of your networks, you reach our new global layer and find the privacy settings on the 7th rank. Please note that while you set your standard settings here, you will be able to configure your privacy for each network individually in the future (according to the next update).
As you might have noticed, we updated mixxt to version 0.11.1 a few days ago! The last version “moonrise” was replaced by “misiu”, a name proposed by our new employee Kamila. If you have any idea about the meaning of this name, don’t hesitate to drop a comment ;)
But the name is surely not the only exciting part of our new mixxt-version. As wished by many users, we finally launched “the global settings” or (as techies would call it) “the global layer”. Within these settings users can administer their accounts including their profile and privacy-settings as well as their membership in the different networks. You can enter this top level of all your networks by clicking the “mixxt settings” in the upper green bar.