Imzy: A private beta update + what’s coming next

This week is an exciting week for us here at Imzy. We look at this as the week where we have completed just about everything on our roadmap that we feel provides the baseline functionality that a modern, thoughtful, community platform should have.

I thought we could go over a few of the things that are a part of this before we talk about the future:

Community leader tools

Our focus, first and foremost is our community leaders. As such, you need to be supported on Imzy. We think we’ve giving you a great dashboard and tools section with a help desk, analytics (simple for now), customization, member management, permissions system for your co-leaders and a chat system for your co-leaders. There’s more to it than this and we have committed to getting you new stuff every 7–10 days, and speaking of which, you’ll be getting a new way to connect to your members early next week!

Community infrastructure

We all know that communities are complex organisms. We can’t fit communities into an archaic message board box anymore. We have built the baseline that will allow you—and us—to build on and expand on so that we can finally build the communities we need online. Right now, this means you can create a number of different types of communities.

  • Private communities — you control who gets in through an application/invite process
  • Restricted communities — you control who can make posts in a community
  • Public communities — anyone who joins the community can contribute
  • Location-based communities — put your community on the map so others can find it!

We also know that how communities interact isn’t as simple as a text or image post or threaded comments. We have built a few post types to expand on how you interact like images, text, and polls, but more importantly, we have built the base infrastructure so that we can build more post types faster and in the future, because YOU will be able to make post types.

We have built a commenting system that is somewhere between threaded comments and chat. You will see typing indicators and new conversations without having to reload the page. This is great, but it is just a start! We also know that people don’t just converse in text, so we have built in support for rich media in discussions. This is easier if you are using our mobile apps.

Identity

Most platforms pick a type of identity they support and that’s it. We feel this is completely wrong in modern times. Identity just isn’t that simple anymore. So, we have built support for a full range of identities on the site: anonymous, pseudo-anonymous, and real-name identities. When and what identity you use is an agreement between you and a community you are a member of. It is up to the community to decide what types of identities is allows and then when you participate in that community, you agree to use whichever identity is appropriate.

Identity is not only important for the authenticity of discussion and community participation, it is a very important step in curbing abuse and harassment. It took a lot of time for us to build in support for this range of identity, but it is essential to any modern platform.

Security

This is something we will always be focused on, but we feel good about where we are starting. We are full-site https. We also support two-factor authentication. There’s no excuse for modern platforms to not have these simple things.

Community and Policy

We’ve been doing a ton of work on our community team. From the communications you receive from us on and off the site, to our policies and procedures around dealing with the good and the bad, we feel we are at a place where we understand how we get from here to our next million users. It’s important we figure this out now.

OK, so what does this mean and when do we get out of private beta?

What this means to us here at Imzy is that we can now start to do some innovation. To be fair, I think we’ve already done some, but we have a long way to go and we are just getting started. So how will we innovate? It would ruin things if I told you everything, but here are a few things you can look for in coming weeks:

  • Chat
  • Video support
  • New post types
  • Developer platform opening
  • Commerce
  • Mobile, mobile, mobile

So, when do we leave private beta and start our public beta? It’s looking like September! But, we aren’t rushing this — we need to have a great product and your communities need to be ready! We will work on the date together as it gets closer.

So, we are excited about where we are, we have taken this slowly and that is important. Thank you for joining us and being patient. In years we will look back and it will all seem like it was a short time!

What is Imzy?

We’re a community platform where you can join groups based on your interests, hobbies, lifestyle, fandoms, and more, to connect with people all over the world, created by former employees of Reddit and Twitter. We’re giving communities and individual users all the tools and flexibility they need for the ways they interact and identify. We’re still in beta, working hard to create a place where you can find where you truly belong, and we’re making it better every single day. Learn more about what we believe, and request an invite to join us.

This post was originally shared by Dan on Imzy.

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