We Love Beta!

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Hey everyone, Hiko here!

We are currently hard at work taking the feedback from limited beta and making site improvements before we go to full open beta for the site. I thought I would ask about a dozen users to go try it, and hoped that they would catch a couple of bugs, and make some suggestions on tweaks here and there. What I forgot is that a large proportion of the people following the progress of myChan are highly trained ninjas, and as a result we gathered up 58 requests, suggestions and tweaks. Of those, 30 are in production right now, and wow, you all really came through with some fantastic ideas and suggestions, big and small.

The biggest beta hero for me is Colin Gregory of Toronto. When users first started logging into the site, I had about 5 users all report that myChan.tv was not loading channel data and I had no idea why. Colin messaged me via the Intercom chat window and told me that he ran into the issue and figured out it was due to the setting “Keep all my subscriptions private” in the account privacy settings on YouTube. This discovery proved to be the fix for all the other users with the issue, and made us aware of the importance of making sure users are aware of this setting. Take a bow, Colin!

The other improvements are wide ranging, from screen behavior, to user interface, to little changes to make things more intuitive and convenient. The amount and quality of the feedback from beta users was AMAZING, and I can’t wait to show them the updates that THEY asked for.

Beta is supposed to be a stressful time. Users are looking at your baby, and finding everything wrong with it, and telling you about it. Getting quality testers is hard. Gathering their feedback is hard. Converting that feedback into actionable tasks is hard. However, contrary to expectation, for me it has been a joy. And the reason is Intercom.

Intercom is that little chat window in the bottom right of the screen that beta users can see in the app. I was able to install it for free and what it does is it allows you all to quickly and easily tell me what you think of the site as you use it. When you message us, we get a notification email, and I have LOVED jumping on and chatting with beta testers as you all use the site and tell me what you like, what you think needs adjusting, and what bugs you are seeing. I can confirm the feedback, chat a bit, and at the end I had a treasure trove of data that I understood well because you explained it to me, that I was able to convert into actionable tasks. I should be stressed out at all the tweaks and work to do, but I’m not, because your ideas were so good, I can’t wait to apply them and have you try them out.

I’m really sold on Intercom – absolute magic for beta. I will keep it throughout the open beta, and expect to keep it available for site supporters after general release. I love how it lets me connect with you guys, and learn better what you love about myChan.tv, and what I can do to make it even cooler for you. And look out soon for more site updates, creation of help and FAQs, and announcement of open beta for everyone to get in and have a go…!


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