Yuku

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Not to be confused with Youku. ‹See Tfd›
Yuku
Web address http://www.yuku.com/
Commercial? Yes
Type of site Hosted Internet forums
Registration Required
Owner Crowdgather
Created by ezboard
Launched September 2005; September 2006; January 2008

Yuku[1] is the latest version of ezboard, Inc.'s internet forums. Yuku describes itself as "Message Boards 2.0".[2] This tagline was most likely derived from the Web 2.0 features of Yuku message boards, such as tags and RSS.

Yuku was owned by KickApps, the acquisition being announced on February 13, 2008,[3] until the end of 2010, when Yuku was sold to Inform Technologies Inc. The acquisition was announced to all board owners on December 24, 2010.

On September 8th, 2011, Crowdgather, Inc. publicly announced acquiring the domain name, website and assets related to yuku.com including the ezboard domains and its integrated forums.[4]

History[edit]

Early demonstrations[edit]

Yuku has been in development since 2005 and was revealed as being "available now" at DEMOfall 2005[5] in September 2005, although it was in Alpha at that time.

At the DEMOfall launch, ezboard, Inc.'s CEO Robert Labatt's presentation explained that advertising revenues would be shared with the individual board owners. Labatt estimated that "an average large community" could receive $3,000 to $5,000 (speculated) a month. The launch was reported by media outlets such as Computerworld, USA Today, Bloomberg and CNN Money.

More demos were given at the New York City Blogon 2005 event[6] where it was selected as a "BlogOn 2005 Social Media Innovator". Another demonstration was more recently given in November 2006 at a monthly technology networking event in San Francisco: SFWIN 1.10. Instead of the revenue feature mentioned at DEMOfall 2005, only the integral approach of combining message boards and blogs with multiple profiles per person were highlighted.

Pricing[edit]

As with ezboard, free Yuku boards are supported through advertisements. An ad-free board costs $6/month for up to 50,000 page views per month. Communities that generate more than 50,000 views in a month are instead charged $0.20 per 1,000 page views for which they choose ad removal.[7]

Features[edit]

Some of the key features of Yuku are listed below.

Profiles, message boards and blogs[edit]

Yuku's user profiles are interactive and similar to those at other Social Networking web sites. Friends can be added or removed, comments can be posted, and private messages exchanged between users. Each account offers the possibility of having five profiles.

Profiles, message boards and blogs can be personalized via pre-made themes in the skins library, or custom-built using HTML and CSS. The Mini Profile provides basic user information, e.g. name, location, age etc. The rest of the profile comprises blocks that can be turned on, moved up and down, or removed.

The available blocks include a location block, which displays the location of the user's ISP using Google Maps; favorite links; media; blog; tags; friends; recent posts; comments; and empty blocks, which can be customised using HTML.

Image hosting[edit]

Each user gets 30MB of free image hosting, with 100MB of image hosting available for paid accounts. The profiles offer members image galleries with slideshows.

Domains[edit]

A board owner can point a domain name to Yuku by changing their nameservers. This means that the board location will be www.boardname.com rather than boardname.yuku.com.

Points[edit]

Kudos was changed to points in September 2010. Points, earlier called kudos, forms the basis of a simple reputation system. User-based points is accumulated across Yuku - it is not specific to individual boards. Topic-based points allows users to give positive ratings to good topics. This also gives a small fraction of points to the user who started the topic.

Message board owners can choose not to display post points in their forums by a setting in their administration control panel. Members may also hide their point level from their profiles by editing the CSS code in their profile skin.[8] Their points can still be viewed in the Hall of Fame or by visiting their points page.

The Yuku Hall of Fame[9] shows the top 100 profiles on Yuku, ordered by points.

Tags[edit]

Tags are search terms that can be added to topics. Tags make it easier to find topics on certain subjects if the tag words are used wisely. They are an alternate way to search for information, as they will only show topics if the word you are looking for was used as a tag.

You can show the tag box at the top of the forum, but it will not show up until there are 6 different tags in use in the forum.[10]

Feature voting[edit]

Feature Voting, Yuku.com

The Feature Voter[11] allows users to vote on which features will be developed in the future. Photobucket integration is an example of a feature that was developed ahead of other features based on user feedback.

Accessibility for disabled[edit]

The Yuku software makes it possible for people with vision problems to make the text more easy to read by e.g. using larger and bold fonts.

The users' administration centers, the message boards and the profiles are accessible for people using Speech recognition software.

Technology[edit]

Server-side processing is handled via PHP. On the client-side, Yuku makes heavy use of Ajax. As a result, some features are quick and simple to use, such as reordering forums with drag and drop. Also, some changes happen instantly, such as editing users within Member Management.

With JavaScript disabled, Yuku is still functional, but some features are simplified. For example, rather than a WYSIWYG posting editor, non-javascript users are presented with a simple text area instead. As some menus are hidden using JavaScript, these are displayed in full, which can make some pages look cluttered.

References[edit]

External links[edit]