View Full Version : POLL: Please read -- images in signatures

3rd September 2006, 01:53 PM
Up to now I have preferred to keep signatures clear of images and banners and large flash animations -- though a small animation is fine.

The reasons for having this small rule on the board is because a lot of people find large signatures full of images and animations very distracting when reading the board. Personally I find it visually a strain to read boards that have lots of things going on in signatures. It is why I set up the board to take avatar images though these can be a hassle at times as well as they really do need to remain below a set size and many are creeping up over the maximum. This stretches out the columns which those with larger screens may not notice much but it is very hard to actually read such threads with oversize avatars on small PC or laptop screens. Please note too that my avatar is the MAXIMUM size for images (and this is about a third larger than the old limit we had when images were auto-resized!). The Getting Started section explains how to obtain this size for your signature. I like to keep the board as readable as possible for all.

With the board software, I don't have the easy option of barring image files and links from signatures, which would eliminate images without me having to police this, but would also mean no one could link to websites.

I do have the option of turning off signatures entirely, but then newbies in particular have no way of knowing who has made a post unless people sign them each time.

I also have the option of addressing the avatar issue by requiring people to upload their files, where they would be automatically resized. The disadvantage of this is that I have to store all those files myself, but the advantage is I don;t have to keep asking people to resize avatars. I need to figure out how to set up the board for this but it is an option I am probably going to go for, because the remote avatar resize programmes I used to use won't work with the current version of the board. Once this is set up people will need to resubmit their avatars as the possibility of remote linking will be removed.

I am willing to consider changing the board rules so that one small (and I mean SMALL!) pic is allowed in a sig -- the square or the thumbnail size on Flickr will be the only option. I could also allow a small banner for those who like those in their sigs as they are in standard sizes pretty much. Or one small animation.

I am interested in finding out what people think about doing this. Allowing pics in sigs and at what size has been a topic of discussion on many boards so this is a recurrent topic.

As benign dictator for the board I will say right now that I am not conducting a poll to be guided by it :shifty: :lol: but just to get some board opinion. I am not sure what I am going to do. I am conscious of the board beginning to get very large and don't want it to turn into an experience that can be very awkward to read. I am also mindful that I will be trying to set up our very own profile section where you can have images, link to Flickr photo albums and videos, have all the links you want... etc etc so there will be a very personalisable area for everyone.

People can feel free please to add comments to this thread, too. Maybe I'm an old fuddy duddy and everyone is just dying to add flashing banners and images all thru their sigs!! :lol: I am keeping an eye on possible board modifications that would let me solve some of these issues without having to nag at people, along the lines of the old avatar resize program, but I haven't found anything that works yet.

3rd September 2006, 02:04 PM
I would like to at least keep the signatures because it does help me distinguish between people. Sometimes it can get confusing having so many people on the board.

That being said I do think you're doing a wonderful job Karlin and I realize there are a lot of changes that you're working through. I think the profile thing would be great as well.

You are very smart though so I have faith that whatever you choose will be fine! :)

3rd September 2006, 02:09 PM
I agree with Arasara. You do a great job already - do whatever you feel will make your life easier. :jump:

3rd September 2006, 02:27 PM
I agree with the others. I like to see sigs so that I know who I'm replying to. We've now got so many members that it's hard for someone old like me to remember everyone's names and names of their furries too :roll:

Another forum I belong to has signatures, banners and all sorts of other stuff and it drives me nuts - sometimes you can only get one post per page as the poster has so many additions on their sig :roll:

I do like the idea of a universal size avatar though, that's excellent. I think mine might be a big big but it's either that or so tiny you can't see it - there doesn't seem to be anything in between on photobucket :(

3rd September 2006, 03:16 PM
Like it just the way it is now. Having pics/banners in sigs seems to get out of hand and too busy. Like having the pics in the avatars.

3rd September 2006, 03:43 PM
It is nice to have the name in the signature line so you know who it is (being a newbie), and agree that too many things going on can be distracting. The way it currently is is very nice!!

But, I agree, I think you should do what is easiest for you too. This is a great forum!

Dr Britcom Mom
3rd September 2006, 04:21 PM

I'm thinking in my newbie enthusiasm, I goofed. I didn't know there was a "no pics in sig line" rule.

Do you want me to remove mine?

3rd September 2006, 04:36 PM
I say too: :oops: I did'nt know that that was notallowedto have banners in signatur.. :oops:

I think that it would be okay to have a signature with banner, not bigger than mine. I tink it's frusterating to have big flassing banners, but I think small ones is okay.

3rd September 2006, 09:35 PM
Personally I prefer just having the photos in the avatar space, and only names and links in the signature, no banners. This makes it easy to load and read...some people are still on dial-up and banners are very slow to load sometimes.

I know some people like the flashy banners that move, but if you are a migraine or epilepsy sufferer, these can cause problems, so I would prefer not to have those at all on the board...

We really appreciate all your hard work in getting and keeping this board up and running Karlin, I think the amount of members attracted and regularly visitng goes to show how popular it is, and how much people like the community here.

3rd September 2006, 09:59 PM
Thanks for bringing up that point Nicki.....flashing banners cause problems like that for me, never could do the disco thing with lights etc, always ended up :yuk: with a bad head...

The photo just as we have it now is good....

Alison, Wilts, U.K.

3rd September 2006, 11:31 PM
I'd ask anyone who hasn't yet, and anyone who is new, to take a few moments to read through the Getting Started section, especially the two posts entitled PLEASE READ... :)


These both go through what is allowed on the board and what isn't; give a quick guide to understanding when what you post may be libellous (very important in the area of breeders, breeding, etc); and specifically mentions that avatar space is there for images, while sigs are meant to be picture and banner free. :)

There are very few rules or restrictions but there are good reasons for those that are in place. :thmbsup:

4th September 2006, 01:15 AM
I like the small avadar photos that we have now. Stuff in the signature line and especially flashing banners, etc. is extremely distracting when reading the posts. I do like having the small pictures on the side as I remember the dog's pictures much more to identify the poster than I would remember their name!

4th September 2006, 07:02 AM
when i was reading through the questionaire choices at the beginning, i kept thinging "whichever one is the way it is now, that's what i like."

I don't like it on forums when there's graphics in the signature. For me, it's cluttered, chaotic and distracting. I like to just be able to read through a conversation on a thread and have the text be continuous.

On this site, I love the avatars. I have enjoyed them so much. so many of them are so lovely, i've taken screen shots and have collected some. I would not want to see the size of them changed because i like to be able to see the detail--but this must be limited by common sense, and in my experience, this has been the rule.

There are rare occasions in my experience where a new person inadvertantly makes their avatar too big, and then the column is all stretched out and messed up. if this happened frequently, then i would say have an automatic re-sizer.

Maybe it does happen frequently and just gets edited by the list owner before i see it. But if not, and it's as rare as it's seemed to me to be, then i dont' see a problem with the way it is now. I like for their to be a little bit of leeway in the avatar size, as long as it doesn't distort the column width to a point where it's hard to read the posts. Again, this distorting has been rare and brief, for me, so not an issue.

I also like the way that we can post photos in our posts, to share moments and things. This doesn't bother me at all the way sig graphics do. As with the avatars, i have enjoyed peoples' photos so much, not just in the photo forums, but the occasional ones in the other forums too.

To me, sig graphics are different, they look more like ads than personal mementos. To me, they often have an ad style and i do not like ads.

4th September 2006, 01:43 PM
I am quite happy with the way it is at the moment. :)
Julie and the girls

4th September 2006, 03:33 PM
I like it the way it is too.....Easily readable and perfect photo size~ the auto resizer may be a huge help to new people and to Karlin....sp perhaps that would be good...I cant tell you how long it took me to resize my photo being a bit of a computer dummy, and if it auto resized it would have made my day a little less fustrating icon_whistling


OH JEEZE, I just realised that its still too big!

4th September 2006, 04:17 PM
Happy? :) :lol:

4th September 2006, 07:47 PM
OH JEEZE, I just realised that its still too big!

this is a good example of what i was saying about how the forums are. Yours is not out of bounds too big, for me, which means it doesn't interfere with making the columns of text easy to read. I don't notice any inconvenience with the size of your photo. Other people's mileage may vary, this is just me. I like how your photo is. I know there have to be limits, otherwise there could be a problem, but so far these limits that exist have served as a guideline to keep peoples' photos within reason (for me).

I know what you mean about how difficult it can be to resize pictures. I have been using Photoshop, but it's taken me a while to get an idea of what number of pixels and image quality to use, it's more technical than what i'm really up for. i know there are more entry level programs out there but i don't know what they are. I have some photos on photo bucket but never figured out how to post to the forum from there, just in the habit of doing it on my own server, so i really haven't figured out the photobucket thing.

About your avatar size, if you have a cropping tool, you could just crop off the extraneous background without making the doggie image smaller, and you could have a smaller avatar with the same amount of dog. :)

4th September 2006, 08:15 PM
Flickr is a lot easier for getting sizes than any of the other options. Indeed the max avater size here is the size of the small image, already sized for you; all you have to do is choose the size and then post the url. You don't need to resize yourself with Flickr. :)

The easiest way to resize if you want to do it yourself and using windows is to follow the directions I posted already for trimming photos using Paint:

To find Paint, go to:


At the bar across the top of the window that has the image in it:

Click on Image->Stretch/Skew

In the Stretch Box, resize -- usually 50% is a good size to view first then go from there to the size you want.

Make sure and click File->SAVE AS and call it another name otherwise you will overwrite the original image file.

Right-click on the new pic and choose Properties, and you will see the size. You can view the image in pixels if you want and get the exact max size of the avatar by reducing til you reach it (or enlarging til you reach it). Then you can uplaod your perfectly sized image to Photobucket if you prefer using that program.

Directions for sizing and posting photos are also in the Getting Started section.