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    Community Self Service - Missing features and concerns
    Topic posted August 1, 2016 by cbur Bronze Medal: 1,250+ Points 
    287 Views, 8 Comments
    Community Self Service - Missing features and concerns

    We have started looking into the new Community Self Service and implementing an internal forum as a first step. During our investigations we have come across different missing features which might block a full roll-out to external users. We would therefore like to understand any proposed workarounds for the following items and if they are maybe already on the roadmap and have a planned release timeframe.

    • Private messages (Users can send private messages to each other)
    • Unread posts (Users have good overview of which topics and posts they have already read)
    • Post fields / Tagging (Community team can tag content with meta data for reporting)
    • Gamification (Users are encouraged to participate to enable rewards (ranks))
    • Post editor (input box to enable bold, italic and full editing options through buttons)
    May 2016 release, CPv3.3



    • Dietrik

      It might be better to post your comments to Communities forum part where Oracle PM's on this subject might be monitoring the posts.

      Although it should be possible to create a number of the functions you've mentioned with CP customizations i don't think the community self service will ever grow into a full featured forum. If that is what you need on short term it might be better to look for alternative solutions.

    • Matthew Lees

      Hi, cbur - I'm the product manager for Community Self Service. Thanks for your post. Yes, all the features you mention are on the roadmap -- plus many more -- but I can't be specific about release dates (though we are trying to get out a more robust rich text / HTML editor for posts as soon as we can). Community Self Service launched last year with a core set of functionality, with enhancements coming every release. These earlier releases provide a solid foundation for some community use cases, though organizations with established communities that have a broader and deeper set of requirements would find gaps.

      As Dietrik wrote above, of course, some functionality can be built via customizations, and some of our early adopters have done this, including several of the items in your list. Perhaps they can be encouraged to share their workarounds or learnings here...

      - Matthew

    • Jason Owens

      I'm also disappointed with the current lack of quality in the communities offering in RightNow, the fact that Oracle doesn't even use what is in the released product should be a sign that the product isn't up to par.

      I would love to see what other customers have done to customize the communities to bring it up to the level of other forum solutions. We are currently trying to implement communities on our site but are struggling to get it anywhere near the quality we could get with third party forum solutions.

      If there are any resources or references on how the RightNow communities could be improved they would be greatly appreciated. I've spent quite a bit of time getting our current environment set up and would like to avoid abandoning the RightNow solution for communities/forums if we can.

    • Willie Eide

      Hello Jason/cbur

      I am the Product Manager for Community Self Service.
      I understand your pain in building an existing communities product today. The current product that Oracle is using is deprecated and we are currently working hard to get features up to par in our community offering - this obviously does take some time.

      I will try to reach out to existing customers to see if they are willing to share some of their customizations to help you along.

      Please feel free to reach out to me personally so that I am aware of those features that you find are missing/lacking are at the top of my roadmap for the coming year.

      Willie Eide
      Product Manager
       - Customer Portal Framework
       - Community Self Service

    • Lorna Rickett

      cbur posted the original question for me so I can update you on what we have found. So far we have only implemented this on an internal community.

      The biggest issue we have at the moment is the notifications bug (you receive the email in any language you have, meaning the links are also from the wrong interface) - that's blocked us from using this publicly. I believe that is fixed in the Feb release though.

      We found the other big issue the post editor - not being able to upload images killed our engagement. Likes, comments, answers etc all went down as we struggled with this. What we have working on a test site now is using  CKEditor - - to replace this. They can upload images, videos etc. 

      We also had to change the board pages (social/list) because of delays in indexing -

      I know we can customise the Unread posts, Private messages and tags but it seems like a lot to have to customise.

      At the moment we're trying to get it to a happier state on our internal community (where PMs don't matter so much) before we could contemplate releasing it to our public sites.

      Having said that, I'm also happy to share ideas on customisations with anyone else working through some of these - maybe we can make it happen faster then :D

    • Jason Owens

      @Lorna, would you be willing to share how you got CKEditor to work? We've been trying to replace the the RichTextEditor widget with CKEditor but have been having problems getting the PHP Form POST to query it correctly.



    • Lorna Rickett

      Sure, Jason. It wasn't that complicated but it did take a few tries to find the easiest spot for it.

      So far we just have it on the original post, not on comments.

      1. We created a custom object field because most images were too large in the normal Question field. 
      2. In the ask page we included the custom object field and the ckeditor textarea with replace code.
      3. We extended the RichTextInput (using that widget for the custom object field in step above)  and in the logic we used onValidate to change to the value from the CKEditor getData(). We then just continued with the validation of that.
      4. In the question detail we extended the widget to make sure the html was decoded and displayed correctly.

      Our primary concern was images so we haven't tested it with all features but so far YouTube and images are working.