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Retiring the Unity Job Forums

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by Buhlaine, Oct 24, 2017.

  1. Buhlaine

    Buhlaine

    Community Manager Unity Technologies

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    UnityConnectPostHeader.png

    Over the years, the Unity Forums have been a place for Unity users to come together, learn and discuss all content related to Unity. In that time, our community has grown immensely, and we're proud that we're able to provide these forums as a way for you all to discuss and support each other in your journey as a developer. As part of our journey as a company, late last year we brought Unity Connect into open beta as our professional network and community hub, and it's come a long way since then.

    We've been running notifications on the affected forums, but this is our friendly reminder. One week from today, on October 31st, 2017 we will be closing the doors on our Job Seeking, Job Offering and Non-Commercial Collaboration boards. Fret not, as one door closes, another opens. Unity Connect is designed for creators to get discovered, visionaries to find talent for their job or task, and recruiters searching for that perfect fit.

    We encourage you to get started by creating your Unity Connect profile and posting your jobs, tasks and collaboration requests there
     
    Mauri likes this.
  2. MrEsquire

    MrEsquire

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    Good, because the number of scammers/wannabe programmers on these section has been extra high over the years.
     
  3. vivalavida

    vivalavida

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    I might sound silly, but after being used to the Unity forums for so long, Unity Connect seems so confusing :(
    Will take some time to learn how to navigate through it.
     
  4. claudiotorres

    claudiotorres

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    Honestly. My conversation rate (selling programming work) on Unity Forum was good. The conversion rate at Unity connect is really bad. There is a lot of spam and "unpaid" jobs.
    I can say, by experience, using both daily, that the quality of the posted jobs at Unity Connect is very very low, compared with the Forum.
    Maybe for Unity is a good move to force everybody to use the new tool. But neither the tool is ready, nor people were willing to do all the registration and profile creation to find a freelancer.
    I think this is a bad move for the market and specially for freelancer like me.
     
  5. tawdry

    tawdry

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    This seems a bad idea having everything bundled into 1 place instead of the easier to navigate seperate forum listing seems a step backwards.
     
    Shinobi1507, dadude123 and ZugZug-Art like this.
  6. hippocoder

    hippocoder

    Digital Ape Moderator

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    Regarding chat rooms:

    I believe that connect has a poorly designed set of rooms. There's too many of them. And - let me be honest - it's too sociable and childish for anyone to seriously consider for business.

    Some key things need to be done.

    • Don't treat connect like unity forums. It's live, so funnel users into 4 chat channels only: audio, art, code and services
    • DON'T do offtopic or anything fun
    • Keep it business. Look at linked in and see what you could do better and more relevant
    • Anyone with relevant unity qualification should have a different coloured name
    Then, just maybe, someone with money will take it seriously.

    These live chatrooms need to link up to jobs boards. It needs to be about doing business, and promoting unity titles / services. Need much more seriousness to it.
     
    truefx001, AlanMattano and dadude123 like this.
  7. dadude123

    dadude123

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    The new "unity connect" seems very much like it was designed to look good, not to be useful.
    Its slower to navigate and takes longer to sift through people / projects.

    Also, I can only agree with @hippocoder, it doesn't feel very serious.
     
    Shinobi1507, kalamona and badquazar like this.
  8. hippocoder

    hippocoder

    Digital Ape Moderator

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    I think Unity's had a pretty good childhood but now is becoming a teenager, and has all these wild ideas.
     
    spike1, Shinobi1507 and boysenberry like this.
  9. MaciejKrzykwa

    MaciejKrzykwa

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    Bad news for me. I do freelancing for a living for more than a year now. My one and only source of clients was this forum. I'll find a way to get by, but I have a request to Unity crew. Could you leave a button or something in place of "Commercial" link that would link to the Unity Connect? Probably not all the clients (people that want a task to be done) are aware of a new platform.

    I also feel sorry for freelancers that were active on forums to show and prove their skills to get a better jobs. Now it is no longer connected to their profiles so it's gone.
     
  10. JessieK

    JessieK

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    Feb 4, 2014
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    Can't say I agree with this move at all, the unity forums is where the community goes and is much easier to find for most users. I didn't even know unity connect was a thing until I just read it here. (As a casual user of unity and browser of the forums.)

    On top of that there is no way to just advertise yourself, you can't throw out a big net, you've got to apply to little jobs (Most of which aren't even paid/decently paid) at least with the forum people had to COME TO YOU, with a good pitch and a good money figure. (Giving the worker the power, which in a market full of scammers and people who want high quality work for below minimum wage is required)

    Sadly you've taken the power away from the freelancers and opened it up to more abuse, gone are the days where you could shame scammers on the forums for example.

    On top of this unity connect is VERY hard to use, I'm a freelance artist and I will be avoiding it myself, just because its not the norm. But as now theirs no real way to build up a profile of yourself, to show off your work for anyone who might just be browsing. I'm aware theirs a small profile for creators, but its what? 3 screenshots and 3 - 4 words? It's hardly the same level, and there's no way to mention the sort of jobs you're best for taking, what rates you are after, you have to "connect" before you can get all that information, which is just a waste of time compared to the forums where a good user would list all of this information right off the bat.

    I really think getting rid of the job forums was a mistake and one I hope the unity team rethinks and revisits. Unity Connect has it's place, its a good service but NOT as a replacement for a forum where you can quickly advertise yourself to more indie groups.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2017
    Shinobi1507 and vivalavida like this.
  11. Buhlaine

    Buhlaine

    Community Manager Unity Technologies

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    Just to clarify here, there is much more to Unity Connect than the discussion rooms. It was first created to be a professional network, meaning you can post your work for recruiters to find, or browse the job listing page to find something you're interested in applying for.



    That being said, thank you all for the feedback. We are always looking into how we can better support everyones needs on both Unity Connect and the Unity Forums so this feedback is valuable to helping us grow.
     
    Shinobi1507 likes this.
  12. hippocoder

    hippocoder

    Digital Ape Moderator

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    Yeah totally true but it needs to be serious to be taken seriously :)
    And as it's about financial things, I think everyone takes that seriously (retiring collab forums etc)... so it was a bit of a shock to see how the chat stuff was playing out.
     
    Shinobi1507 likes this.
  13. nat42

    nat42

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    Jun 10, 2017
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    I'm not at all interested (and became negatively interested when Buhlaine mentioned getting pestered by recruiters) but I had a look, where's the logic of having two different chatrooms for people looking for projects and seeking to fill them?

    It seems like whichever side of that you are on you would be hanging out in both? (because if you are looking to hire you are naturally interested in people offering services, and if you are offering services you are naturally interested in services that are needed, I can't wrap my head around these being two different discussion rooms, unless the chat is meant to be meta, about finding such rather than actually connecting the groups)
     
  14. MrEsquire

    MrEsquire

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    I have used the section before, not just on my personal account but friend of mine have used it.. Its full of scammers, by this I mean programming scammers, the problem of pretending to start project then disappearing is a common trick. Another issue is they want stupid amount of money for templates they taken and little code. The section needs be shut down asap... I do feel sorry for genuine people who trying make some living out of it, maybe different sections for different type of work, artists and programmers totally different thing, so the complexity of the scam is different. Unity cannot help as its a middle man..
     
  15. hippocoder

    hippocoder

    Digital Ape Moderator

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    Unity isn't even a middle man, it's a transaction between two individuals and not Unity. What Unity did was give people a space to tear each other apart. It's possible the new connect site will at least allow some verification of identity (which helps with accountability via certification) and a reasonable amount of pain for repeat offenders.

    It's not so much I'm defending Unity more than seeing it's probably better than the forums. But it still could improve quite a bit further with some nudges.
     
    Shinobi1507 and MrEsquire like this.
  16. dadude123

    dadude123

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    Feb 26, 2014
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    I did not have this problem even once yet.

    May I ask for much experience you have in programming? I'm asking because I think the more you know about a topic, the better you can tell real programmers from fakers.

    Personally I'd consider myself an excellent programmer and all the tasks I hire people for are basically grunt work that I have thoroughly planned. So maybe that's why its very unlikely for me to fall into a trap/scam like this.

    I'm not trying to judge here at all, I just want to try to understand how getting scammed like that works?
    Why would someone just disappear when they could just as well do the work and not risk a bad review or something?

    From my experience, if you a) thoroughly verify that someone is actually capable of doing the requested work and b) take multiple hours to talk with them about the task, your project, what exactly you expect etc...
    then things will go fine.

    Not saying you're not taking the necessary precautions, its entirely possible that I'm just lucky :p

    edit:
    I just thought of something. Maybe the problem is the expectation of "many people being available". Which is not really the case at all.
    There are not really tons of programmers out there who are a good match for the job you might have (whatever that job is).
    It might take multiple months to find someone.

    Maybe that's how people get scammed? They think they have a huge choice of applicants when in reality they have maybe one guy? And they don't even do basic vetting?

    Just a pure guess...
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
  17. MrEsquire

    MrEsquire

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    I will try explain the scam in simple words:

    Scam 1:
    User looks for a programmer on the message boards or makes posting.
    He is contacted by multiple individuals, they provide some info
    They all seem to know programming to some degree.
    They then proceed by adding on skype to further interact.
    You provide details, they provide quote price..
    You sign contract with them over the net, as most them use fake locations.
    They ask for initial payment to see if serious or not...you send paypal etc.
    They do some work for few days, a week. Then make excuse they ill
    You never see them again, blocked on skype etc. Paypal despute sometimes works, sometimes not.
    Now some of the scammers are advanced where they provide some evidence work is being done.
    Then again disappear.

    Scam2:
    Ask for a large come of money, they then find someone cheap in their home town, subcontract
    the work, poor guy gets paid peanuts, while middle man takes all the cash..

    I wrote this fast as explaining it fully would take some time, there a few scams/rip off artists on here.
    They create multiple profiles, you can see as there post count is low.
     
  18. MaciejKrzykwa

    MaciejKrzykwa

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    Aug 28, 2015
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    @MrEsquire what you desribe is the problem of a freelancers' market in general. Not the Unity Forums problem. Closing the forum isn't a cure.

    @Buhlaine
    I agree that Unity Connect is great for someone who wants to find a full-time job. It's like a portfolio page but even better because it gives an opportunity to reach out employers.

    For freelancers it has some flaws. For example, forums are a well-known place to look for a freelancer to do your job. Something new called "Unity Connect" is not so obvious. That is why I would like to see a link from forums to Unity Connect in a place where "Commercial" always was.

    For me there is a lack of something similar to "Mark forum as read". I don't want to "skip" all new tasks manually. I don't even know if maybe "skipping" has some impact that I should avoid?

    edit: I wasn't aware of these discussion channels untill now. I can't see how it can be good...
    Let's say I am looking for a programmer to make a game for me. I post a job (I mean task) on Unity Connect. Why should I also post a message in a discussion channel? Shouldn't it be well-visible for all potential programmers from the beginning?
    As a freelancer, should I search for jobs (I mean tasks) on "connect.unity.com/jobs" or in the discussion channel?
    Also when I advertise myself in the channel called "Commercial: Job Seeking", my message would likely to be not visible in a week or two (people don't scroll so much to find me). It would be nice if I could advertise more than once. Probably once in a month or so. It could be automatically checked to avoid spammers.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
  19. moonjump

    moonjump

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
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    Please allow us to dismiss the message about the jobs board that is appearing at the top of every forum page. We have been allowed to dismiss all previous messages.
     
    nat42 and Ostwind like this.
  20. Stardog

    Stardog

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    Jun 28, 2010
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    I checked out the site and it's kind of bad.
    • The links at the top don't tell you where they're going, breaking browser accessibility.
    • Nothing opens in a new tab. Actually nothing.
    • Floating bars at top and bottom overlapping everything.
    • Clicking a project pops it up in a modal window. Visiting same url will give an actual page. Why silly pop-up?
    Until these are fixed, I would never use it.
     
    dadude123 likes this.
  21. dadude123

    dadude123

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    Feb 26, 2014
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    I couldn't agree more, the page as it is breaks tons of UX guidelines.
    I'm sure the devs of that page actually put in some effort to make it that way (making chrome not display the link when hovering over stuf, etc...).

    You don't remove stuff that worked just because you can, if you remove something (displaying links, showing stuff in new tabs as intended, removing space with useless overlays, ...) you better have a good reason for it.
     
    Stardog likes this.
  22. neginfinity

    neginfinity

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    Jan 27, 2013
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    ... I took a look at Unity Connect and I hate it already.

    It does look childish. It does look like one more attempt to make "our own casion", meaning some sort of social platform and rope developers in there. I don't want one more odesk, or one more platform or whatever.

    I do not see how this is supposed to align with my goals.

    I think I should have a contract till the end of the year, but then I'll very tempted to start looking for greener pastures.

    Shutting down job forums was a horrible ideas.
    ---edit--
    The situation reminds me what I read about removal of Beast lightmapper. It is the same mistake - when providing a new option, do not remove the old one, because some people are using it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2017
    Shinobi1507 and kalamona like this.
  23. MaciejKrzykwa

    MaciejKrzykwa

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    I'm using Unity Connect for about a week now. It surprised me how it makes CONNECTion with clients harder!

    Here is why:
    1) It breaks a space for connecting with clients into two different places: commercial channels and job section.
    2) Commercial channels problems:
    1. "Commercial: job seeking" channel.
      I can advertise myself only once in a history. It means that I'm invisible after few days to the rest of my life.
    2. "Commercial: job offering" channel.
      I cannot reply to the messages there because it is forbidden. That's not so bad. The bad thing is that it is unclear how should I reply to a job offer. One possibility is to "connect" with a client and send him a message along. The second option is to "Apply for a job" at the link to his offer in a job section (because he should link to that in the channel).
      From a bussines perspective it is always better to have an immediate touch with a client. So I would vote for "connect" option. But then, the link to a job in a job section is redundant. And a client loses a handy place where all candidates sends their "applies".
      Maybe it seems weird that I have a problem with these things but the whole point is that it is Unity CONNECT. I shouldn't have headaches with connecting to people there.
    3) Job seeking problem:
    When I apply for a job I can attach documents (pdf, txt, etc.) and/or highlight my projects that I have on Unity Connect. Where is a place for saying "hello" and tell someone that I actually know something about a task? Yeah, I should attach a document (Resume and/or Cover Letter), but that's an idea of someone who is not familiar with freelancing at all. The direct message is always better. Client wants to reject spammers or people which don't understand his problem right away. Client doesn't want to download a resume / cover letter just to realize that it is another generic message from someone who didn't force himself to actually read a job (task) description.
    I, as a freelancer, also don't want to create a new document every time I apply for a new task.


    Don't get me wrong. I believe in Unity Connect. It can be good in a future. But now when Commercial forums are gone, and problems described above are existing, it is rather DISCONNECTING people in a bussines area.
    I also would like to see Unity Certificate more visible and highlighted. After all, it is a great place to promote developers with certificates and the certification process itself. It would be great for clients because they can trust in certificated developers more.
     
  24. AlanMattano

    AlanMattano

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    There are no useful connections when there is little offer or little money flow. A standard contract is missing for a beginner.
     
    MrEsquire likes this.
  25. Jaimi

    Jaimi

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    Jan 10, 2009
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    The web page doesn't have a link to Connect in the menu (at least under "Community"). Most people browse the forums, and that's the menu they'll be seeing. If you really want people to go to the Connect page, you should at least link it so it's in our face.
     
  26. AlanMattano

    AlanMattano

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    I wish that Unity connect consider adding payment systems and managing contracts. A bit more like in the asset store.
     
  27. Buhlaine

    Buhlaine

    Community Manager Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2016
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    We are still listening to all of your feedback, thank you.

    As an FYI
    • @markp-unity and his team are extremely active on the Unity Connect forum, which is the best location to provide feedback moving forward. If there is any feature requests that you would like to make, drop them a line there, they are open to feedback and suggestions!
    Regarding Freelancers on Unity Connect
    • With Unity Connect, we're building out a legitimate professional network for all creators to find work. As part of that we're working to drive high quality opportunities to Unity Connect, and will continuously be working toward providing the best experience for all users.
    • One way that we're building high quality opportunities to Unity Connect is through our upcoming Connect Challenges feature, launching early December. These are great opportunities because we will be working with major companies and sponsors to help highlight your amazing content.
    Regarding Connect Messenger
    • The intention of this move was to bring all of your job related content to the Unity Connect platform, the messenger was created to help supplement anyone who wanted to have another location for you to help signal boost your post.
    Moving forward, we're working to boost visibility of Unity Connect and improve the experience for you.
     
  28. MaciejKrzykwa

    MaciejKrzykwa

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    @Buhlaine, These are beautiful words but we want simple solutions. The simplest of all is to show a link to Unity Connect page. It is easy to do. It gives visibility to Unity Connect. It will help us freelancers. I bet it'll not gonna happen :).

    I know that you have to respond to us somehow because it is your job. But let me sum it up:

    As an FYI
    • Ok, I'm going there, thank you for pointing me to the right forum.
    Regarding Freelancers on Unity Connect
    • I hope you drive business there somehow, I count on it.
    • Ok, you will do some challenges. Just keep in mind that it is not a regular income for freelancers. It is just another contest. For someone who actually works with clients in a full-time it is usually not worth participating. So don't count it as "driving high quality opportunities".
    Regarding Connect Messenger
    • "The intention of this move was to bring all of your job related content to the Unity Connect platform."
      And then you split it up to jobs and messenger channels. So don't you do the opposite of the intention to bring all job related content to one place? Yes, you do.
      The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
     
  29. kalamona

    kalamona

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    Aug 16, 2011
    Posts:
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    I used to browse the forum for freelancers, but I was only interested in 2d artists. The topic names made that very easy to only open and inspect 2d artists. I don't know how to do this in Connect.

    1. I can join the "Job Seeking" chat, but then I don't just see ppl doing 2d art, I see whole pages of texts, links and whatnot, making browsing uncomfortable.
    2. I can search for talents, I can filter for 2d art, but then I get a bunch of people, and I am unsure whether they are available. Also the name tags take huge amount of screenspace, only 3 or 4 fits to my screen.

    Forum was great because you were able to quickly browse a lot of topics, you were sure that fresh topics are from people who are actually interested in freelancing work, etc. I have no idea why it was changed.
     
  30. hippocoder

    hippocoder

    Digital Ape Moderator

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    More thoughts:

    If I was going to use a mythical site to connect to people to work on my game, I would like to be able to browse for the person I'm interested in then pm them to start up a conversation. I would be able to see any unity based vetting like their certification and see links to their portfolio page. That would be reassuring for me. Unity would probably have standard cookie cutter downloadable contracts to make things smooth for beginners, and clear notification and guidelines on how not to get scammed.

    I'm not interested in any of the global shared chat rooms as I fail to see how any of that is relevant to business. I do think they cast a bad baby/discord light on the entire thing. I think actual chat rooms should be spawned by individuals for team work or one to one communications - and done in a great integrated way.

    I think its a big red alert allowing a chat room where anyone can spam links and not be accountable until far too late.
     
  31. markp-unity

    markp-unity

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2015
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    Hey all,

    We hear ya - We will review deleting the JOB based messenger channels. We'll keep this thread updated with our decision.
     
    vivalavida likes this.
  32. Matthewdeargameaudio

    Matthewdeargameaudio

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2014
    Posts:
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    Just heard about this after working on a contract for a few months :/

    Really sad to see it go, unity job forums have been a steady source of work for me and I've metsome of my best and most rewarding clients here.

    Is there any development in Connect being an apt replacement? I can't see it serving a similar purpose at the moment.
     
    CatsPawGames likes this.
  33. CatsPawGames

    CatsPawGames

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    Jun 4, 2014
    Posts:
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    I must agree with opinion expressed by majority here - while forums proved to be decent source of tasks with very good apply-to-accept conversion, Connect is just abysmal in that regard.