Regular Asian Sirens readers will probably have noticed that I’ve been unusually quiet in the comments of late. That’s because I’ve been working day and night on a massive upgrade to the site, which I felt was long overdue. Initially, I just wanted to get it on more up-to-date software (the CMS ThaNirz launched our blog on eight years ago was abandoned even then), but as I came to grips with the upgrade, I really thought through the way both our readers and content producers interact with us. The result is a complete overhaul of the site, to capitalise on the strengths it already had, and address its weaknesses in the wake of the social web revolution.
One of the things I’m most proud of at Asian Sirens is the great community we’ve established here (our comments are infinitely more civil and intelligent than you’ll find on virtually any other adult site), so I really wanted to expand on that. As such, I’ve added a new social layer to the site, kind of like a mini-Facebook. Members can now ‘friend’ and and ‘follow’ each other, just like on Facebook. You can upload and edit your own avatars, and post various information about yourself (web site, blog, social networking sites, IM/chat, biographical info etc.). You can ‘favorite’ any posts on the site, including individual comments, and even upload your own photo album.
I’ve also paid careful attention to privacy considerations. You can decide your own privacy levels for your member profile, on-site messages and individually for photos you upload, all the way from completely public to completely private (except that the admin can view everything, of course). You can also decide if you want to allow other members to comment on your photos, plus you can set your own preferences for email notifications (there’s also live notifications on site when you are logged in).
I haven’t forgotten about the core blog features either—indeed, this is now more feature rich and user friendly than ever before. Users can now quote from and reply to other users’ comments, and edit them for up to five minutes after posting them. There are also convenient and easy to use styling buttons, including the ability to add properly formatted text links and embed images. You can also subscribe to the comments from any post by email (as well as RSS). I’ve also added pages for users to post ID requests and submit post suggestions, and even submit posts yourself!
Which brings me to the features I’ve added for content producers. In addition to the aforementioned ability to submit your own post, content producers who post photo albums can optionally become a featured member profile. It is also now possible for you to post announcements—this is kind of like our own built-in Twitter, but with far more flexible and powerful formatting. Members can favorite and comment on announcements too. The last five announcements will also be featured at the end of every page on the site (scroll to the bottom of the page for more information).
It’s actually possible for me to add even more features to the site in future (such as groups and forums), but for now at least, I wanted to keep the site focused on what it’s really all about: beautiful Asian women. As such, I’ve tried to implement all the new features in such a way as to not make the site unfocused or difficult to use—to this end, I’ve given the site a very clean and simple design as well. Also, people who don’t want to use any of the new features don’t have to—you can still just use it as a blog if you want to (or use the new features selectively), and you don’t even need to register to post blog comments now. The site is now more mobile friendly as well, with a special mobile theme (plus the standard design is already iPad friendly too).