Support BME: Update

Thanks to your support BME has surpassed the voting threshold needed to be considered for the small business grant!

It will be a while before we know if we won the grant, but we just wanted to extend a huge thank-you to everyone who voted.  There are still 2 days left, and more votes won’t hurt, so if you haven’t yet taken a moment to vote for BME, you can do so by simply visiting www.missionsmallbusiness.com.  On the bottom right you’ll see a button labeled “Log in & Support”.  The site will link to your facebook, so you don’t need to create a profile of any kind.  Once you’ve signed in, search for “BME” and click the “VOTE” button for BME.com.  That’s it!

So again, from all of us here at BME, thank you so much for your continued support.

p.s. The t-shirts from the fundraiser for Ari are being printed right now and should be back from the printers in the first week of July.  So expect to see them in your mailbox sometime after that.

Mission: Support BME

As many of you know, BME is a small business.  With only 5 employees, BME still manages to be the world’s largest online tattoo, piercing and body modification community, historical archive and educational resource.  While there have been some changes over the years, most notably the gallery redesign, and the upgrades to IAM, not to mention staff changes, BME is still up and running.  For those that have been paying attention to Rachel’s IAM page, you’ll recall that the site redesign took about 3 years longer than was predicted, and cost a lot more than was estimated.  We’ve since gotten rid of the company that was screwing us over and brought in a new programmer that has been working day and night to address as many issues as possible.  Now with us having such a small staff, it’s obviously a lot harder for us to keep up with the changes that you’ve come to expect from your social networking sites. Now if BME were to receive a large sum of cash, we’d be able to bring in more programmers and get the features that you want to you a lot sooner.

So what can you do to help?  Well, we’re not asking for your money, but we are asking you to support us as we’ve applied for a small business grant.  Showing your support is extremely simple.

First, visit www.missionsmallbusiness.com.  On the bottom right you’ll see a button labeled “Log in & Support”.  The site will link to your facebook, so you don’t need to create a profile of any kind.  Once you’ve signed in, search for “BME” and click the “VOTE” button for BME.com.  That’s it!

We need at least 250 votes to be in consideration for the grant, so be sure to ask your friends to vote as well.  The more votes we get, the better our chances of winning.  If BME receives the grant, you can expect a lot of the changes that we’ve been working on happening considerably faster.  So put this on your IAM pages, your Facebook wall, and your Twitter feeds!  Get the word out, and help support BME!  Voting ends June 30th, so vote today!

BME Updates, Free IAM time, Submit photos by e-mail

If you didn’t have a chance to read this morning’s announcement of the new ASK.BME staff, you should take a quick look.  In addition to adding new ASK staff, we’ve been cranking along turning out new fixes and features to IAM as well as tweaking various pages so they’re more in line with the old IAM. More changes are coming and we’re hoping that by the end of the summer we’ll have all of the new things we’ve been busy working on behind the scenes completed! It’s been a huge project that has spanned several years but we’re finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Thank you to everyone who has been patient and understanding while we work to bring BME up to par with the rest of the advances that the internet has seen come to light!

Feel free to send in some questions! To celebrate the addition of new ASK.BME, We’ve added 3 months to all IAM account expiration dates which should add 3 months to everyone’s accounts that are already active as well as making any expired IAM accounts accessible again!  So if you had an IAM account in the past and it’s expired, now is the time to come back and check out all the changes for yourself.

Now one of the biggest requests we’ve had over the past year has been to bring back the system that allowed you to send in your photos by e-mail.  Well we listened, and you can once again send in your photos.  To do so, simply e-mail the images to submissions@bme.com.  When you send photos to that address, they’ll appear in the media section of your BME profile.  From there you’ll be able to tag your images so they can be published in the appropriate galleries.  And remember, uploading images lets you have a free membership.  Check out the BME FAQ for all the details regarding free memberships, as well as paid subscriptions.

Finally, once you start e-mailing in your photos, check out the leaderboards to see where you stand.  Every year we give away prizes to the top contributors, so make this the year you get a prize!

Also, 30% OFF almost everything in the BMEShop! Coupon code: movingsale
Sale ends April 11th! Check here for details!

IAM launch delays and ETA…

Hey everyone, we just wanted to let you know what’s been happening with IAM over the weekend.  On Friday the site went live, however there were a couple of major issues that users found and it was taken down immediately.  Over the weekend Rachel has been working around the clock with the website guys to get the site up and running.  Yesterday the site was almost ready to go, however there were a couple of problems that needed to be dealt with.

We’re sorry for the lack of updates, but everyone has been working hard on getting it up and running and we haven’t had time to sit down to announce anything.  We’re hoping to have IAM up and running by later today, as we’re in the final stages of testing some of the new features now that the former problems have been fixed.  As it stands now, the site will either go up today with some of those features being added over the course of the week if the site is stable or we’ll have it up by Thursday with the features in place.  It all depends on what the developers can do with the site while it’s live.  I’ve been as anxious as everyone else to get back onto IAM, and Jen or I will try to get more updates for you over the course of the day.

I know it’s been a long wait, but from what I’ve seen it’s definitely worth it.

Again, we apologize for the delays in the launch, and we hope to have everything up and running within the next day.  Keep an eye on ModBlog for any further updates.

Oh, and here’s a fresh BME Logo tattoo that was sent in by Dspiercing.

EDIT: If you are having problems logging in please email support@bme.com. Please note that you log in to IAM via the main page on BME, so if you visit an old IAM link and it redirects you to BME, that’s actually the right place. You need to log in there using your email address and password. Again, if you are having problems email support@bme.com and please include your IAM name. Thanks! Jen

Guess where?

Alright, so the headline may be a little misleading, but it’s relevant to the photo, so that counts right?  In case you haven’t heard, the BMEShop is having a massive sale right now.  In celebration of the new IAM the BMEShop is giving everyone 10% off for every year that the new IAM has been in development.  Which means, you get 30% off everything (excluding dvds).  Simply use the code: 3years to get your discount.  There was a problem with the code in that is was falsely coming back as expired, but that has now been fixed.  This sale is going on until August 19th, so if there’s been something you’ve been eying in the BMEShop, now’s the time to buy!

Oh, and just had an update from the boss lady, the new IAM is on schedule to be launched tomorrow afternoon at the lastest!!!

Everything is on sale at the BMEShop until August 19th!!  Discount code: 3years

A fresh look

Hi everyone, I know a lot of you are excited about the new IAM that will be launching later in the week. Before I get started I just wanted to let you know that the BMEShop Sale code is now working.  There was an issue with it not being accepted but it is fixed now.  So if you’d like to get 30% your entire BMEShop purchase (DVDs excluded), just put in the code: 3years

As you’ve no doubt noticed, the old IAM has been put into read-only mode.  You can still IM people, post in forums, and most importantly, back up your data, however you can’t update your page or images.

Rob posted screenshots from the staging server which did not include the updates or way the site was going to look so I’ve removed them. I’m including a screenshot from the main page of IAM with all of the users data imported to it.   The thumbnails are currently cropped incorrectly to maintain the aspect ratio of the thumbnails on the main page. You will be able to log in and correct that. You can choose how you want the thumbnail to be displayed.

We’re chugging along nicely and everything is on schedule to be launched on Thursday. Please feel free to post comments or questions in the comments section.

screen-shot-2011-08-10-at-115423-am


Three years in the works

By the time you’re reading this, IAM will have probably been taken down for the upgrade.  As many of you know, this upgrade has been a long time coming, three years in fact.  So to celebrate, the BME Shop is having a SALE! We’re giving you 10% off for every year the new IAM has been in development, that means you’re going to get 30% OFF EVERYTHING (except DVDs).  To get the discount, all you have to do is put in the code: 3years when you check out.  The discount will be automatically applied.  The sale is going to last until Friday the 19th.

We’ve also had some requests, so first class shipping has been added to the US shipping options.  However, priority shipping is only 5-15 dollars and it gets there in 3 days or less and it can be tracked.  First class shipping can’t be tracked, nor can any insurance be placed on it, so if you need something quick, priority is probably your best bet, but first class is available.  Express mail is also now available to US customers.  Here’s the current rundown of shipping options:

Domestic (USA):

First Class, Priority Mail, and Express Mail.

International:

Priority Mail and Express Mail.

I’ve also been testing out the new IAM, so over the week I’ll be updating you with what you can expect when IAM comes back online.

So remember, this week only you get 30% off at the BMEshop by using the code: 3years

Sale ends Friday August 19th, 2011.  Sale applies to all items except DVDs.

It’s finally here!!

Dear IAM family,

The time has finally come. After 3 very long years, several false starts, thousands of man hours, dozens of people (most of whom aren’t the same people from the start), 3,714 emails between the developers, Mike, Jen and myself, hundreds of pages of designs, hundreds of thousands of lines of code, thousands of revisions and unfortunately my entire life savings! :)

We’ve been tweaking things left and right on the private beta to clean up as much as we can and have it 100% perfect with every feature ready to go but that’s the entire reason it’s called a beta! We need to have our community actively using it so that we can move forward with fresh eyes. As the community uses the beta, more and more features will be added, we had to draw the line some where and get everyone using it so that we could make all the other adjustments that we need to make with the system under heavy load.

I’m sending out this broadcast to all of IAM in order to let everyone know that we’re about to release the new version of IAM.BME.com. In order to make sure that we have the most up to date copy of the data, we’re going to have to turn IAM off for a couple of days prior to launching the new site. IAM will be offline starting Monday the 8th. It should be back online on Thursday the 11th.

We have spent the last several years going over and over the data, the old site and the new site to make sure that we are always advancing and giving you more than IAM & BME have ever been able to offer in the past.

With the initial launch, some features that you’re used to using may not be available initially, but please don’t worry! The site will continually be upgraded to keep BME/IAM in line with the rest of the internet. As I said before, we have to draw the line at some point with a feature set and get the community running on the new software in order to keep adding all of the features that we want IAM to have.

Please keep in mind that this is the first upgrade that IAM has received in well over a decade! I look forward to it and I appreciate your patience and understanding while we work out the kinks that arise with any upgrade!

While your journal entries, forums, messages and photos will all be imported, please take a moment to use the following tools to make a back up of your data. The “Diary Download” tool will make a file that contains your diary entries, their titles and the dates they were posted, including the HTML you may have included in the post. The “Photo Download” tool will make a zip file containing every image that you have ever uploaded to IAM (including those that you have removed access to from your page). Please allow some time for the tools to process and the downloads to complete. Some members have very large photo back up files and they will take some time to download depending on the speed of your connection.

Diary Download Link: http://iam.bmezine.com/iamback.exe?

Photo Download Link: http://iampix.bmezine.com/cgi-bin/photo-backup.cgi

While the over all “look and feel” of IAM will be changing, most of the way that IAM works will remain the same. We’ve even gone to great lengths to keep the IAM related MACRO tags working. All of the functions and features of IAM will still work and function the same way. The biggest “change” is that all of the various settings that you need to select to select things and make your IAM account function a certain way will have been moved to one “settings” page so that you don’t need to dig in various settings pages in order to find/change them. Our main goal was to make IAM easier to use. That was the main focus of the redesign.

The following MACROS WILL NOT be able to be imported to the new IAM. The reason that is is because those MACROS have been replaced with other MACROS or they have been built INTO other functions that operate a different way. Please remember that these features will be available but with things like your IAM page’s custom theme, you will have to recreate it on the new system.

  • 1.In forums, the following functions will no longer be implemented: **NOINDEX**, **BOTTOMINDEX**, **INDEX**, **RTL** **TRANSCRIPT**
  • 2.In diary entries: **NOBME** – This will no longer be necessary as your media will all be available in the “media” section of your profile. You decide what you want to share with IAM members, with BME or keep private.
  • 3.In diary entries: – This function is not being imported. You can set your page to either “IAM Only” (this is the default) or to allow anyone.
  • 4.Custom themes. These will not be imported. The new IAM uses a WYSIWYG editor and you will be able to easily customize your page using the new editor. If you want to save your current settings so you can refer back to them after the move, we encourage you to view your custom edit page and take a screen shot or copy the data in some way as once the move is made you will no longer be able to access that information.

If you have any questions, please EMAIL SUPPORT@BME.com. Jen, Mike and I will be very busy during the upgrade process so we will not be able to answer individual messages sent via IAM during this time but you will definitely be able to get a reply from Jen if you email SUPPORT@BME.com.

Thank you for your continued support of BME. You are what makes BME possible and the place that it has grown to be today!

Rachel

p.s. Everyone’s IAM page is active as I just made sure to add time to all the accounts on IAM so if your friends haven’t logged in because they said their accounts have been expired.  So tell all your friends that their IAM account is active so they can come check out all the new features, as well as back up any of their data.

IAM issues fixed!

The issues that cropped up yesterday have been resolved. It’s been recommended again and again that I don’t give people like this the attention they deserve but while CT and I spent the day working on resolving the issues. Thanks to Shannon for helping confirm our diagnosis of the issue as well.

This was a simple error in one of the codes that manages server side cookies. There was a hard coded date which happened to be yesterday. This has since been updated and resolved. We’ve got continuous back ups running of the data from IAM (which if this threat was legitimate, they’d know that BME isn’t attached to IAM so you can’t destroy BME). The import process to the new software will begin in the next few days and from then on, we’ll no longer be relying on the current software set.

Some people suck.

We had awesome messages like this posted where people claim they’ve set up “doomsday” devices on IAM in order to blackmail me.  Congratulations! You’re an asshole.