Lost But Not Always Found

As I stumble around, I'm finding more and more of the things I'm somewhat familiar with, but I have to agree with the statement - "please give us a manual to navigate..."  I've been a member for over 6 months now, have asked for and am still wanting an "EP How-to Manual"... imagine a new member who just signed up a couple of days ago... no obvious way to log out, no obvious way to search for groups or stories, find new friends, nothing obvious to explain what the points are all about or what they're for, ditto for the (beloved?) Tokens (I keep getting tokens added to my total, but I don't have the faintest idea what I did to get them).  

We have this experience group in which we can comment (which I stumbled across thanks to a member of my circle posting in it), but how about a "Welcome to EP" group, with a prominent link on each member's home page, so that both existing members and new members can quickly learn about how to use EP and make the most of it?  Include things such as "What's New", and a link to this group also, and a tutorial that includes things like "Points 101 - what they are, how to get them, and how to use them", "All about Tokens", "How to find ???" with sub-links for groups, stories, confessions, friends, etc. etc.

I programmed computers for a living for over 40 years, so I know how hard it can be to make some things work correctly.  But without a "Welcome to EP" section and an "EP Users Manual" section, EP has to be one of the most UN-User-Friendly sites I've seen in a long time.  There's a lot of value here, but it's useless if people have to spend much of their time looking around to find things, and for existing members, it becomes frustrating to want to return to something and not be able to find it again (I became somewhat irritated the other night when I couldn't find the "logout" button, nor anything to tell me how to logout - almost made me less interested in signing back on again... wonder how many others felt the same way?).  Imagine a newcomer who doesn't even know what's here for him/her...    Change may be great, EP, but if there's no communication to go with it, it can cause more ill will than good.
deleted deleted
4 Responses May 5, 2012

I hear you. We don't like change for the sake of change but we listen to feedback from our members and genuinely work hard to make the site easier to use. Unfortunately, we aren't always perfect (sometimes there are bugs and sometimes changes need to be refined and further improved) That's what makes your feedback so valuable.<br />
<br />
We do our best to communicate any changes happening on the site though with millions of members on EP, sometimes members don't see the announcement right away. We are working to improve this process and recognize the importance of alerting our community members before changes take place.<br />
<br />
You can learn more about the new logo and header here: <a href="http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Want-To-Improve-The-Experience-Project/2248101" target="ep_blank">EP Link</a><br />
<br />
The FAQ section is a great resource for getting quick answers to questions.

I put a smile on you friend. Thanks for posting.^^

I agree..it's a big hot mess now I like EP..been here for 5 yrs and I don't like logging on anymore. It's just flipping and flopping around with repeated steps that waste time.Total nonsense.

Interesting story. <br />
<br />
We didnt need a manual with the straightforward old profile but yes with the new one it might be a good idea.