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EasySocial 4.0 Beta Released

EasySocial 4.0 Beta Released

Christmas might have arrived a little later than it was supposed to and I understand that many of you are eagerly waiting for this post. It has been delayed multiple times because of the vast new upcoming features and functionality in EasySocial 4.0 which I am extremely excited about sharing with you.

Joomla 4 Support

EasySocial 4.0 will work with Joomla 4 out of the box. EasySocial 4 also works across Joomla 3.x releases including the upcoming Joomla 3.10.

New PHP Requirements

PHP Requirements
In order to provide the greatest and the latest updates that we have in store for you, we have also updated the minimum PHP requirements to at least PHP 5.6. 

Apart from the bump in version requirements, your PHP environment must now support the Fileinfo extension in PHP. This extension is crucial as we are now using a much more reliable image processing library to ensure that the algorithm in resizing images is optimized.

Redesigned Administration Interface

The administration area in EasySocial 4 has been redesigned for an improved user experience to help with your day-to-day administration tasks

Modules Manager

Modules Manager


EasySocial has a total of 48 different modules and managing them has always been tricky since you need to pick modules that you want during the installation. EasySocial 4.0 now includes a module manager. With a click of a button, you could install or uninstall modules right from the back-end. 


This is an extremely handy feature and you do not need to run the installer just to do this ever again. 🤞

Form Builders 2.0 🎯

Form Builders 2.0

Workflows are now rebranded as Form Builders. You can find these Form Builders in Profiles, Events, Groups, Pages as well as the all-new Marketplaces. 

Apart from that, we have also improved the user experience when dealing with multiple custom fields. With the batch actions, managing and customizing these fields would be a breeze.

Custom Sender for E-mail Notifications

Customizable E-mail Sender

It now allows you to use different sender details to send notification e-mails to users. Be mindful that if you are using e-mail services from Gmail, your sender should be the same as the login credentials.

Activation Reminder

Account Activation Reminder

There are times where users may forget to activate their account and with EasySocial 4, you can now configure EasySocial to automatically resend activation e-mails to inactive members on the site.

Group Subscription Settings

We have also added brand new settings for you to determine the default e-mail digest settings for groups. With these new settings, the user would inherit these settings automatically as soon as they join a group on the site.
Group Subscription Settings

Server-Sent Events

Server-Sent Events

In order to optimize and reduce queries made to the server, we have also added SSE support in EasySocial 4 for webservers that support this. This polling technique will ensure that only a single connection is opened between the client and the server, reducing the number of queries made to the site to poll for new activities. 

This option however will not work for sites that run on FastCGI (Specific setup from certain hosting using cpanel).

Help ⛑

Help Buttons


We have also added more help buttons throughout EasySocial so that if you are stuck with a particular feature, you can always get help to the appropriate sections using the available help button.

Google Sign In

Sign in with Google

We have added support for Google single sign on! With this new addition, EasySocial now supports up to 5 different single sign-on providers out of the box:

  • Sign in with Facebook
  • Sign in with Twitter
  • Sign in with LinkedIn
  • Sign in with Apple
  • Sign in with Google

Marketplace  🛒

EasySocial 4 includes built-in marketplace support to allow users on your site to place their classifieds. Just like the rest of the features in EasySocial, the built-in marketplace has custom fields support and it is very extensible just like Profile, Groups, Pages and Events. It also has a very robust ACL system in place for you to define the ACL in each of the marketplace categories.

Front-end Advertisement Submission

As requested by many of you, we have also improvised on the existing built-in advertisement support in EasySocial 4 to allow users to create their advertising account and submit advertisements from the front-end. These can be restricted with the built-in ACL in EasySocial.

Reply to Comments 🔄

This was a feature that was being worked on for quite sometime now but it was pulled back due to performance-related issues. We have gone back to tweak this and managed to add this without sacrificing the performance. 
Reply to comments

Redesigned Toolbar

The toolbar in EasySocial 4.0 has also received a make-over to spot a more simplicity look and feel so that it would blend into most templates out of the box.

Brand new toolbar

Redesigned Tooltips

The overall tooltips in EasySocial have been redesigned to display more relevant information and to allow users to interact with one another conveniently.

Redesigned tooltips

Redesigned User Listings

Redesigned user listings


We have also redesigned the user listings for a more unified look and feel throughout EasySocial. The all new user listings use the same card layouts like the rest of the views in EasySocial. We believe your users would love this new layout!

Brand New Mobile Menu


The mobile menu has also been redesigned to offer a much better overall user experience for users using mobile devices.

Last Saved Filter  💾

Timeline Filter

With EasySocial 4, you can now configure EasySocial to remember the user's last saved filter. This will ensure that whenever the user goes back to their dashboard, it will remember their last selected filter providing a seamless user experience.

Video Thumbnails

Video thumbnails


While going through most EasySocial sites, we noticed that many of the uploaded videos do not have a proper video cover since the thumbnails are automatically generated. 

With this update, users can upload their own thumbnails or generate one by taking a snapshot while playing the video. This would allow users to have precise control over the thumbnail of an uploaded video.

Scheduled Posts  🕑


Another feature that was picked up from our Voices area is the capability to schedule a post. We decided to add this into the core of EasySocial 4 so that users can now schedule their posts on the site at a future date instead.

GIPHY Stickers Support

GIPHY Stickers

When we added GIPHY support in EasySocial 3.2, we noticed a great increase in user interaction on the site because GIPHY makes it easier for users to share. Therefore we decided to also add the stickers support from GIPHY and this would definitely help increase interactions on the site!

Anti-spam Measures

Honeypot Logging

We have been experimenting with honeypot anti-spam over registrations in EasySocial 3.2 and we noticed that it was able to prevent almost 95% of bots from being able to register on the site. That is a remarkable result and with EasySocial 4, we decided to push this a step further. We have now rolled out the same honeypot anti-spam technique across several other sections in EasySocial 4:

  • Conversations
  • Activity Streams
  • Profile Editing

Apart from that, we have also added logging to allow you to view bots that are caught in the honeypot trap!

Comments Management

Comments Management


We have also added a brand new comment management tool at the back-end of EasySocial. This would help you to be able to manage comments on the site in a more effective way.

Improved Image Processing Library

We have replaced the entire image processing library with a brand new library that uses a better algorithm when resizing images. With the new library, image sizes are much smaller compared to the previous library. When used in combination with the image optimization service, you can be sure that the images generated are truly optimized.


With the new image processing library, we noticed an average of 50% smaller file sizes for every image that is generated by EasySocial compared to its predecessor.

ImageMagick Support 

ImageMagick Support
Alongside the brand new image processing library, we have also added ImageMagick support and it can be configured from the back-end settings of EasySocial. 

If your PHP environment has ImageMagick support, you can configure EasySocial to use the ImageMagick extension. The benefit of ImageMagick is that it supports HEIC image formats unlike the GD library.

HEIC Image Supported


High Efficiency Image File (or often known as HEIC) files is now supported in EasySocial provided that ImageMagick library is supported by your web host.

Image Optimizer

Image Optimizer
With this new update, we have also added cronjob support to allow the image optimizer service to optimize existing images on the site.

Profile Type Badges


We have also added the ability for you to define a badge for your profile type. We couldn't decide to stick to a font icon or an image so we decided to just add them both 😍 

To use an image for your profile badges, you just need to upload an image while icon on the other hand relies on the icon-set from FontAwesome 5.

New Custom Fields

New custom fields

We have also added several new custom fields in EasySocial 4. These new custom fields will link to their respective protocols if the apps are installed on the user's desktop.
  • Telegram custom field
  • Whatsapp custom field
  • Facebook Messenger custom field
  • Telephone custom field

Permalink Custom Fields 🔗


The permalink custom fields for groups, pages and events also received some ❤️. They will now be automatically populated as soon as the user types the title.

Embed Apple Podcasts

We have also added parsers to support the all-new Apple Podcasts. With this new addition, users can simply share the urls of their favorite podcasts and it will be embedded as a rich media item on the activity stream. As easy as that!


Story Form Updates

EasySocial 4 also adds a new experience for users to be able to toggle the visibility of the story form. Although these are just aesthetically pleasing, it seems to be one of the features that have received many votes.

New Menu Items

We have also added two new menu layouts that can be created on the site:
  • My Videos
  • My Audios

Conversation Updates

Delete Selected Messages


Conversations in EasySocial 4.0 also received some goodies! It will now allow users to delete selected messages rather than having to delete the entire conversation.

Emoji Pack Updated 🥰

Emoji Pack


The emoji pack in EasySocial has also been updated in EasySocial 4.0 with the latest emoji styles.

Other Great Improvements

Apart from these changes listed above, these are some of the improvements that are worth mentioning:
  • New sorting option to sort albums by most commented
  • Added next and previous link when viewing a video
  • Added next and previous link when listening to an audio
  • New user points when user posts a comment on a poll
  • Default sorting option for groups can now be configured in the settings
  • Users can now repost video and audio items
  • Users can now post a blank comment when it contains an attachment
  • Added new settings to display counter in title of the browser
  • Added configurable option in profile types to configure the first time login redirection link
  • Added new ACL to limit the duration of videos
  • Admin and owners can now unpublish groups, pages and events right from the front-end
  • Added new configuration option to append datetime of original event title towards recurring event's title
  • Emoji pack has been updated 😍
  • Private group descriptions are now visible even if the user is not part of the group

Next & Previous for Audio
First Time Redirection
Reposting Videos
Browser Counter
Next & Previous for Video
Empty Comments
Default Sorting for Groups
Points when Commenting on Polls
ACL for Video Duration
Reposting Audio
Sort by Most Commented
Unpublish Items

EasySocial 4.0 Beta Availability

EasySocial 4.0 will be available starting today and we highly encourage everyone to install EasySocial 4.0 on a staging site instead of a live site. 


I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all of our customers for these great suggestions, and also for being patient with us while waiting for this awesome release! 


Kudos to the team as well for making this possible by feature pumping EasySocial 4.0! ⭐️ ⚡️

 

Comments (77)

Hi. Great, great news ?
I suppose there is wrong screenshot for "Emoji Pack Updated ?" (screen display reactions, not emoji in comment form).

It is actually the correct screenshot as it was referring to the emojis used in the reactions.

A W E S O M E !!
Thank you guys for all those updates.

Thank you!

stuning blog update about ES4 ... congratz

Thank you!

This was impressive Mark & loved team members!

Maybe the most impressive update ever for ES?

* Hope also there is a focus on multilanguage for example categories I guess for marketplace etc

Thank you!

"Profile Type Badges" – I expected to see badge everywhere with name.
So when I see User's comment, I can see his badge and understand that he is admin, vip-user or supervise-user(profile type).
Like verification badge.

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by User User

is the badge the tiny little marijuana leaf in the first image and the blue image I cannot discern in front of "founding member" in the second image?

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by Paul Paul

I surprised to see "Marketplaces". But may be you can also add "Virtual Gifts", so users can buy it for user points (or real money) and give each other? Gift should display on user page (collect em). Also user can buy gift for himself (like trophy). ;)

At the moment collecting userpoints it's a little bit boring. Gift would make it more interested.

Please do create this request on https://stackideas.com/voices/easysocial

Thanks!

Yes, I made one on 16th July, 2020 https://stackideas.com/voices/easysocial/item/44-virtual-gift-trophy-feature-buy-gift-for
But nobody liked it ? Can't understand why.

Maybe it's because the feature that you are seeking is not popular and it's not something that people are looking for or not in their priorities?

Nordmograph already have a product that does this (or they used to have LOL)

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by Marc Bills Marc Bills

YESSSSS.
Can’t wait to try it out!

You guys are awesome and always manage to surprise. Keep up the great work!!!

Thank you Jean!

Wow! Very impressive update!

Quick questions: will these updates affect the dedicated apps? For example, how do the nested comments appear on the apps? If I update to 4.0 will there be a lot of problems for the app users? Is there a timeline for integrating these core features into the apps?

Again, great update and thank you and Stackideas for all of the hard work!

Hello Keith,

The native EasySocial app has to be updated in order to support EasySocial 4. Our mobile lead is already working on version 4 of EasySocial Native but it will probably not get every single feature since it's not something that can be copy / pasted for it to magically work.

We do not yet have a timeline for this but we are looking at having the Native app ready when we release EasySocial 4 stable

Thanks for the explanation, Mark! I understand how different the code is for the apps. I think I will just wait until EasySocial 4 stable is out as I have a lot of users (almost 5000) that are on the apps and I don't want them to experience a bunch of problems.

One more question: do scheduled posts respect the local time zone of the user or does it schedule based on the server time zone?

The scheduled post will respect the user's set timezone, otherwise, it will use the server timezone.

Thank you for the reply, Yasser!

"Redesigned Tooltips". I suggest to allow admin chose what stats o display. For example at some site there is doesn't matter how much friends user have. So it would be better to display: videos, userpoints, photos (not albums).Thanks

Hm, if we were to make everything configurable, you'll end up having hundreds of pages of settings and that really does no justice. Since the source code is open, why not just tweak it yourself?

Either way, I strongly recommend that you post feature requests at https://stackideas.com/voices/easysocial

I suppose I'd rather go through hundreds of pages on configurations than have to re-apply my modifications everytime I update easysocial!

I hear you but not everyone is a warrior like yourself and they rely on our documentation :\

The more settings we create, the more documentation is needed and the more maintenance is needed because every time we change the UI, everything needs to be updated again.

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by Mark Mark

!!!! WOW !!!! ... this improuvments and new feautres are great ! ... Thank you Mark and your team ! ...

I think will be great to have icons and short way to publish from storyform , ADS, Custom forms and for Marketplace items ... in rst is great everithing you plan to do !

Best regards !

Thank you Bogdan

Marketplace icon is already there, click on the plus icon at the demo website.

n00bster, on my instaled version is not apearing in storyform ( the Marketplace) ...

Absolutely fantastic news. Brilliant direction you are going in. Looking forward to trying. Can we set access levels in the marketplace to restrict who can add listings?

Yes you can. It is exactly just like how you configure the ACL for them to create groups, pages, events, videos etc.

Changes look pretty awesome....well done to the team.
However, I did notice that the demo es4 display is messed up on mobile devices.
Might be something the team wants to check and correct.

Hi Marc Bills,

We'll take a look at this. Thanks for reporting this in.

This is very exciting

Love the new features, just what a lot of us have been waiting for.

Can’t wait to try it out.

One question though. With the page/group app that lets the page create a blog post does it let you add an image and is the page the author of that post?

Keep up the awesome work

Thanks Adam

Not entirely sure what page / group app are you referring to here. Do you mean the articles or blog?

https://stackideas.com/apps/item/3366-page-blogging-app

Should of mentioned easysocial pages, groups,etc create blog post with easyblog

The page blogging app integrates with EasyBlog and you can create blog posts for pages using EasyBlog and yes, you can insert an image for the blog

Love it thanks for an awesome update.

Thank you Paul!

What a pleasure to read this news !!
Excellent work :)
I had hoped (and even dreamed) for a MarketPlace for EasySocial, and my wishes are granted ! Thank you so much.
Of course there is still so much that we would like to have. The list of our features request is long, but little by little we are getting there.
Thanks to the whole Stackideas team.
Philippe

Its been a dream of mine for a long time too.

Would love to see it turn more into a multivendor store than basic classifieds.

Can we charge users a fee to sell on the market place?

Yep, this is where EasySocial ACL excels in. You can configure the ACL for profile types to allow / disallow users from posting classifieds

Thank you Philippe and yes, although we cannot include everything on the first release, we will continuously improve the product

Great Job Mark and team.... Did you get the voting hover item I requested? Allowing admins or users to hover and have a popup to see who voted yes?

Thank you. Have you already posted this on the feature requests area? May I have the link to the post?

Thumbs up, THANK YOU to the Team, brilliant work!
But missing in Marketplace: Currency selection for seller ($,€,...) and sorting options for items (Country, price up/down, first /last added, ...)

Thank you! Currently, currency selection is available for the site admin only but in the future, we are looking at expanding this into multi currency support and possibly venture into an expansion of custom fields for Marketplace.

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by Mark Mark

Thanks.

Currency selection for seller ($,€,...) and sorting options for items (Country, price up/down, first /last added, ...)


The currency selector is a must have though you have a multilanguage site and people selling their items locally and with different currency. Also add bitcoin there

Our database structure already supports this out of the box. For aesthetics reason, we decided to turn off multi currency support but let's see if we are able to quickly plug this back in for the next beta.

The Marketpalce is a genius idea !
if you can integrate native payement for transactions i think it gone to be a sucess, i personaly look to make a marketplace where members can sell and buy digital items. Add a commission system for example.

it can be another app to integrate,
Or can be also an external integration with other marketplace solutions like hikashop !!

Thanks for your input on this

Hamed, this step up to another complicated business- and application level commissions etc where you have to start interact with all the transactions and validations.

Lets say you start to have this payment transactions as non-US company with US citizens in US you must start a company there for managing your business regulations & credentials etc

you can go under the radar for a while if you are very small but not forever

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by ssnobben ssnobben

but this should not be a problem for stackideas.
everyone has to know himself what he does for the purpose of taxes and so on.

My opinion is that the Scheduled Post button should be available on all timelines, and always in view, not dependent on clicking a filter to get to it. Too much user friction and they will forget/never know it is there.

Thank you for your input on this

FANTASTIC UPGRADES!

Cheers to the team and to a great 2021everyone!

With the front-end advertising capability and the ACL function, I'm assuming we will be able to use PayPlans to charge users for placing an advertisement?

Yes, you could use the Profile types integrations with PayPlans to restrict access

Would on the main frontend AD page the plans from payplans are showing up if i use restricted access to it? how does a user now that he have to pay for this feature to use it?
how does that work exactly?

i would suggest to show here the plans what are setup in payplans to unlock this feature:
http://es4.stackideas.com/advertiser
http://payplans.stackideas.com/index.php/other-plan

@Mark :: the new way to passing information about events from the server to the browser (SSE) sounds interesting. but what is the alternativ to not use FastCGI at the server configuration to use this feature?

There are no alternatives right now and it's very difficult for us to replicate this because it seems to only happen to certain web hosts that runs on Cpanel FastCGI setup. We experimented this with the EasySocial and Conversations Native App.

With certain FastCGI setup, it does not seem to allow buffering and this causes issues with how Server-Sent Events works as the connection needs to stay open.

Hi,

Today is a very good Friday! :D
Marketplace is an awesome addition.
Is it only for user?
Or Page/Group (or maybe Event) can have their own marketplace? (think)

For this 4.0 can you please add option to add external link in Toolbar? So that we only use Toolbar and disable Joomla menu :P

Congrats to all StackIdeas team for this awesome release

MarketPlace works for Groups and Pages too ! But not the events yet apparently.
You can try on the demo

Just did and it works well

We want to get rid of the toolbar because it is just too difficult to have it designed in a way to blend into most templates.

Furthermore we have width constraints because we can't add anymore items because it all depends on the width of the template

What is a replacement for toolbar? Do you mean after this ES menu is only relying on Joomla menu?
If that the case I need to start looking for template because I am relying on ES toolbar as my main menu :D


Talking about width and blend, an option to control a width of the stream page would be awesome too

Comment was last edited about 1 month ago by Syabab Syabab

It wouldn't be something in the short term as we still have the toolbar supported but at least in the long term, we are really hoping to do away with the toolbar :x

The width of the stream area would be dependent on your template, even if we make this configurable, it cannot stretch beyond the width of your template

Hi Mark,
Thanks for the input on the Toolbar. (think)

For stream area, I'm not going to stretch it, I'm looking for a proper way to narrow it down actually

I guess, its best that you use css to achieve what you want instead of adding a settings because the settings now no longer make sense if we are only going to allow them to narrow the width.

Will schedule post also work for pages, groups and events?

Yes it will

Hello, its possible to add album categories? Thanks

Currently albums in EasySocial does not support categories.

How can we tell if our system supports FileInfo?

You can check it in your phpinfo, https://take.ms/nCBK0z. Also, if your site does not have Fileinfo support, the installer would warn you when you try to install EasySocial.

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