On February 12, 2009, ChristianBlog.Com announced that they were putting into place a serious of changes within the ChristianBlog.Com website in order to provide additional security features.
We detailed 11 important changes that would be taking place, including three "Immediate Changes" items.
Minor Profile Protection:
We are happy to announce that we have now enabled the first item on our three "Immediate Changes" list.
As a brief reminder, the first of the three immediate changes was:
christianblogAll profile/bio information (personal details, published blog, shoutouts, gallery, etc) will be hidden from view - unless you are a friend of the minor. This means that anybody randomly visiting the website will not be able to view anything about the minor from their biography. It also means that published blog entries will not be viewable to the general public. Only those who are friends of the minor will be able to view content about the minor. This will be the #1 biggest change in our initial changes.
As of just a few minutes ago we have now enabled the protection of all of our members profile pages, if they are a minor.
Because ChristianBlog.Com is physically located and operated within the United States of America, and as such we are governed by their laws for the definition of a minor. That definition states that a major is "anybody under the age of eighteen (18)".
How This Works:
With the implementation of our new "Minor Profile Protection", all profiles pages of those who are considered a minor will now be hidden from view if the following conditions apply:
, The person attempting to view the minors profile is not logged into ChristianBlog.Com
, The person attempting to view the minors profile is logged into ChristianBlog.Com but it not within the minors Friends/Contacts List.
There is one exception to this, and that is that in order to maintain a high level of protection and enforcement of our Global Policy, those individuals who make up the "Moderator Team" of ChristianBlog.Com will be allowed to view the profile pages of all members - including those profile pages of minors.
This implementation of our new "Minor Profile Protection" has two different long-term affects that we must stop and realize.
First, is that this is a major and drastic change to how the ChristianBlog.Com website has operated for the last three (3) plus years since we went online!
Until now it was possible for anybody (a member or not) to view the profile of anybody that was a member.
This is something we know and realize will have a drastic impact upon our present members! Anytime you "take away features" that never makes people happy. And to take away something so drastic, so important, as allowing or not allowing, the viewing of profiles -- well, we do realize that is a major change.
Secondly, we can say is that in the long-term the implementation of our new "Minor Profile Protection" is what is necessary to ensure that ChristianBlog.Com stays in-line with current privacy and protection laws.
One does not have to think hard about hearing all of the news on TV about our major/popular website being faced with serious security and privacy issues. MySpace, Facebook, and other social websites have been getting greater and greater pressure from Parental Groups and Privacy Groups to enforce the protection of content of minors.
We here at ChristianBlog.Com are trying to do the right thing by putting those necessary features into place before we are legally forced to do so!
Fans & Haters:
As always, ChristianBlog.Com is open to hearing from both fans and haters of the changes we make!
ChristianBlog.Com has a proven history of listening to our Community and making necessary changes were our Community desires us to make changes and were we legally can.
Unfortunately, this is going to be one of those times when we cannot really step back from this change and go "hmm, the community does not like this, perhaps we should reverse it".
This is one of those times when we are doing something because the current laws (or soon to be laws) are mandating we do something.
This explained, what we will be opening to considering is the "how we handle the protection" of minors content. That is, to explain it in another way, the process of what is protected, what happens to those trying to view protected content, and what is required to gain access.
Of that we are open to hearing feedback and suggestions. But again, the option to remove this feature is not an option. We have no place to apologize for this because it is something that WE are being FORCED to do by the laws of the land. If we knew we did not have to do this, we would not.
ChristianBlog.Com is getting close to having 10,000 members. We feel like this 10,000 member mark is our hallmark moment for the floodgates being opened! We are excited to see major new growth coming very soon! We are also excited to know that some of the highest standards that exist to protect minors is now in-place here at ChristianBlog.Com!
I am glad the leadership team is putting this into action.
What is sad is the fact that we as a group need to protect teens from those that would do harm.
You have my support.
:coffee: drinking tea
Speaking as a minor myself, I think this is a great idea!
Thanks for all the hard work the CB team has done. I don't see why anyone would object to protecting the minors. I would like to ask one thing though, is it possible to keep our profiles blocked from nonmembers even if we aren't minors. I don't want nonmembers to see my profile, sorry if that offends anyone but I have kids and don't want anyone to get any info about them if they aren't members. Some would say not to write about them in my profile but they are such a big part of my life. Maybe something that could be turned on or off according to the members feelings of sharing their profile with non members. Just a thought. Again thanks for the hard work.
A rather major bug was discovered in our code that we put into place yesterday that nullified the age-validate-check for a percentage of our members.
This bug has now been resolved.
Thanks to those who reported it.
[quote=angelita]is it possible to keep our profiles blocked from nonmembers even if we aren't minors[/quote]
At this time, no.
One of the 11 features we intend to put into place includes a "Blacklists". Please see the other threads for further details about that.
I would like to see a pretty good majority of our members asking/demanding for the type of feature you are wanting/asking for, before we were to move forward with that idea.
I am not against it, and we once considered doing it - and now would be a great time to do so - however I think that because this is outside the boundries of what I am being legally forced to put into place, the global community of ChristianBlog.Com should provide some input/demands/suggestions of their own.
John B. Abela
For some reason I can't view my own profile. It says that I'm not on my friends list but since it's my account to begin with... is this supposed to happen? I tried to invite myself to be on my own friends list thinking that's what I was supposed to do but it says I'm not supposed to do that.
As to the question I asked earlier, if it is not possible right now I understand. Keep up the good work!
[quote=cowgirldiva]For some reason I can't view my own profile. It says that I'm not on my friends list but since it's my account to begin with... is this supposed to happen? I tried to invite myself to be on my own friends list thinking that's what I was supposed to do but it says I'm not supposed to do that.[/quote]
Ok, this should be resolved now.
Sorry it took so long.... I just got back into my office.
John B. Abela
Thank you so much John!!
[quote=cowgirldiva]Thank you so much John!![/quote]
I will take that as a "It is working now"
Not indicated above anywhere - guess I was tired when I wrote the announcement - is that the age-verification is in place within the following pages (more to come later??):
 Profile Pages of a minor
 Blog Entries written by a minor
 My Gallery of a minor
 Gallery View/Comments of a minor
I have not decided if I should put the age-verification-check into the "Open Discussions" system yet.
Also note: If you are viewing a blog written by an adult (or even a minor who IS within your friends list) and a(nother) minor posts a blog comment, the blog comment written by the(other) minor will be viewable to everybody. We do not hide blog comments based upon age -- and have no plans to ever do so. The same goes for comments posted ANYWHERE within the generalized website (discussions/groups/through-the-bible/prayer/praise/etc). Doing so could greatly disrupt the natural flow of commenting.
John B. Abela
I have been away for a while and am so happy to be a part of a site that really cares about the content of the site and the protection of its members. This is a breath of fresh air I don't mind breathing.
[quote=bereanjim]I agree with the protection enhancements. How can I keep the announcment from appearing on the page every time I log in?By the way, keep up the great work.**[/quote]
Click the little gray button at the top-right of each one ;)
[quote=wehavewon]Question for you. When Bible verses are placed in a text, an (L) shows up next to it, and when I hover over it, the verse is displayed through Libronix, which software I have. For those who don't have it, can they see the verse in another format, or do they have to look it up?[/quote]
Please see [blog=christianblog/christianblog-integrates-logos-research-systems-reftagger/]this[/blog] and [blog=abelajohnb/logos-bible-software/]this[/blog].