For those of you that followed the peloton over here from the old VeloReviews site – glad to see you sticking with us!  Hopefully the below tips and hints will make your transition to the new format comfortable.

Profile – One of the first things you should take a look at is your profile.  You can get to your own page by clicking on either your name or profile picture from the “My Info” box in the upper right corner.  From there you’ll see a row of tabs, on of which is labeled ‘Profile’

Groups and Forums – This is a bit of a change from the old  Now, forums are attached to groups.  One way to look at this is that a group is a collection of people, while the forum is what those folks are talking about.  Functionally this really isn’t much different from what was done on the previous site, where Groups and Forums were used in the basically the same ways.  You can still add discussions to a Group Forum – and when you create it the form will give you a list of existing groups to post the discussion to.  You can get to forum discussions either through the group, or through the ‘Discussions’ tab on the main menu.

Also keep in mind that, when you are in a group, updates will go to that group, and not (necessarily) be visible to all VeloReviews members.  The group’s administrator – the person that created the group – can decide if they want the group to be public or not.  There is a forum in the Website Issues group that will help out with folks running a group.

Streams – Much of the goings-on around the community will show up in your “Activity Stream.”  The main stream is what you see on the home page (which you get to by clicking the little house icon in the top bar.)  Facebook users will recognize this approach.

Mentions – Borrowing a little bit from twitter, you can ‘mention’ fellow members pretty much anywhere on the site.  For example, you could say “Hey @vr_admin, you should check out this photo.” as a comment to someone’s photo.  That “mention” would then appear in my activity stream on my profile page, alerting me to the fact that you were talking to me.

Blogs – There is a lot going on behind the scenes in the area of VeloReviews blogs.  To get you started, you can add a blog entry using the link provided in the “My Info” box in the upper right corner.  For more information regarding blogging (including different ways to add blog entries) I suggest you join the group VeloReviews Bloggers – where we’ll be discussing these issues in more detail.

Photos and Videos – There are currently two different ways to add photos to VeloReviews – and both have a slightly different context.  First off, from your profile page you will find an ‘Album’ tab.  From there you can upload photos into your own personal album.  There is also another method however, that is appropriate for “quick shares” of interesting photos – like photos from the race you watched today, etc.  This is done with the links below your update box on your home page:

In fact, from here you can share photos, images, web links – just about anything – and it will show up in your photo stream.  Media submitted here will not currently appear in your photo album, however.

On the video front there is a lot going on.  I’m working on a video gallery that unfortunately was not ready in time for the new site launch.  One thing that we do have, however, is access to live race video feeds right here on VeloReviews.  You can find this by going to the “Video” link from the main menu.  Stay tuned for announcements of improvements in user video galleries.  For now, you can use the method mentioned above for submitting media.