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About: Michael Kang

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My Latest Replies (From Various Topics)

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Posted: Sunday Nov 10th, 2013 at 1:06 am #60979


It’s nice to see a response here. Before I write this response I’d like to remind everyone that we are fully paid customers of S2Member Pro and have been in support of the continued development of this product since we bought it 6 months ago.

No, we have not solved the problem with downloads redirecting to the front page, as our team is not made up of engineers but rather teachers and writers. It happens every time, and I’ve only found it works correctly on IE (which I hate using) on only one of our office computers (not the others). Also our multimedia (MP3 files) do not stream 100% of the time from AWS; it’s more like 50%, which is dismal. Meantime, we have opened a separate bucket on AWS and set our files public and then put the download links into emails and sent them off to clients. I wish we could spend more time on our specialtise of teaching and writing than on technical issues, but our client’s experience on our site is of paramount importance.

So although clients are satisfied, the problem remains: the user experience on our site is flawed and is nothing that they want to rave or share about with their friends. We have over 50,000 fans across 3 FB pages, so the user experience, interactivity, and fun is very important for word of mouth marketing. S2M may not realize that out of the 678 fans I see on their page, most of us are business owners who then showcase their (S2M) product to hundreds of thousands or millions of other consumers on the internet. When they have a less-than-acceptable user experience or otherwise experience a loss of money and not get what they pay for, it not only reflects on our brands, our companies’ reputations, our services, but it also reflects negatively on S2Member, and in my opinion this is enough to get lawyers involved. There’s a discrepancy between the advertisement of the product, the user agreement, and what the client actually receives. However in his defense, if S2Member instead charged 1% for every product sold through all its clients, he’d be able to afford the time and workforce to address all these issues, we alone would be contributing many thousands to his income per year. We’re a small but growing team, but we don’t see the necessity for hiring tech people full time in our line of business when most of the solutions we need already exist, and it’s part of our competitive advantage in our market.

So we come to the point of alternate solutions: we have been testing and implementing Woocommerce, for which I see several benefits:

1. They have a team of several dozen people working on it. So it’s not a single guy in his free time (and maybe a couple helpful fans) trying to fix a product who doesn’t make enough money off of to start a real business operation (I don’t know anybody who actually does that though). But I prefer a team of people who can complete user experience testing in all areas, not just trying to add lots of bells and whistles. Basically, S2M is selling a cheap product out-of-the-box with laissez-faire attitude and no liability to the user experience as described in the user agreement. In fact, he’s not even invested in the experience or our results in doing business or he’d change his business model. And if he was concerned with user experience, he wouldn’t place a notice above this box I’m typing in that says “Support Reps are NOT present here, for company support…” That’s just an excuse and it reflects on how out-of-touch he is with his clients. ALL feedback should be addressed and taken into consideration, no matter where it’s written: FB, Twitter, the “wrong” forum, wherever.

2. Woocommerce is open-source coding platform, so it comes with educational training plugins, like Sensei, which would be great for our business model. And many many other plugins, like memberships, Amazon store, a myriad of business solutions, integration with SalesForce, integration with WPML for multilingual sites like ours… These plugins come at a price, but I believe you need to invest in your own professionalism if you expect your clients to trust your brand, products, and services. I asked S2M earlier this year about integration with WPML and the response was basically have WPML contact me if they want it, which I view as some sort of superiority complex, rather than a helpful-let’s-all-work-together attitude and build the next best thing. Personally, I was asking myself why am I now obligated to do this? Although I have an invested interest, the attitude alone told me that he was not concerned in making it really come to fruition.

3. Since Woocommerce has an actual shopping cart, it solves a problem that S2M doesn’t have: buying more than one product at a time (which we achieve now through ccaps). We’ll still need to leave S2M running on the hundreds of old posts we’ve already created until we get everything cleaned up.

But for now, it’s time we part ways and invest no more effort in S2M.

Posted: Tuesday Oct 29th, 2013 at 10:53 pm #60744

I don’t understand what you’re trying to do. Maybe you could explain the goal of your business model, so we can see why you’re trying to do it this way.

Posted: Tuesday Oct 29th, 2013 at 10:51 pm #60743


That’s exactly what we’re doing. If they have access to that CCAP, we wrap the download link inside the CCAP conditional shortcode. We’re also using “s2member_file_inline=no” in our code so that the file is forced to download rather than display in the browser. However, those who have access to that download link, for some strange reason, are getting redirected to the front page of the website. And that “inline” function doesn’t work as the PDFs always open in our browsers. Of course once the PDF is open we can save it, but sometimes clients just want to download and open later.

I really hope somebody posts a solution or a workaround to the problem.

Posted: Tuesday Oct 29th, 2013 at 6:21 am #60728


You could do that if you just want to provide your files for free to the public. However, our multimedia books and publications are created and marketed by a team of professionals and are downloadable after purchase only, either by membership or by purchasing that particular CCAP item. We prefer to use a membership website over shopping cart since many of our products are bundled together with on-going training programs for businesses. However, we’re in talks with another company to transfer all our products and training programs to their membership solutions since we’re experiencing quite a lot of issues on a daily basis. For example, this afternoon from 3pm to 5:30pm none of our sound files would play and none of our downloads would deliver. Then suddenly they started working again at 5:30pm. Of course, our office received half a dozen phone calls, and just as many emails asking “what’s going on???”

If I were to ask S2 Member for an explanation for every phone call and email we get, they’d be swamped.

Posted: Monday Oct 28th, 2013 at 11:52 pm #60715

Our site is lucky enough to have daily backups, so I reverted to our pre-1026 backup, because somehow overnight the front page of our website disappeared. Didn’t really have a choice, and the revert took us back to before the update.

But we’ve been experiencing on-going problems with our clients not being able to access files (sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t). It’s really infuriating that we all have angry clients and the technicians seem to be rolling out and delivering new problems, when things seemed to work fine before.

Posted: Monday Oct 28th, 2013 at 11:46 pm #60714

We are also experiencing this problem, however intermittently. I just wrote a post yesterday about JWPlayer not playing files, and how files will not download (or get redirected to home page).

Posted: Wednesday Jul 31st, 2013 at 1:21 am #54453

Thank you very much. I understand what you mean by how the users use the files. A paying member’s computer or device will still leave a copy of that file on their machine, so it’s up to our legal definition of what that user may do with the files is the only way we can protect ourselves. Sigh, unfortunately, the wild west is now the wild east, where no laws apply.

Posted: Tuesday Jul 30th, 2013 at 3:43 am #54383


Although I found that what you stated is in fact true, I would like to return to this issue.

Since our company develops foreign language training products with many MP3 and MP4 products, in order to protect them from getting distributed all over the internet bit torrents, we’re still encountering some problems:

1. We lock our multimedia files for paying users to access “inline” on the webpage without download option.
2. However, as a PAYING USER, I can still look at the source code, find the aforementioned MP3 file, copy the code into my browser and access the file, even by filename.
3. What prevents one bad PAYING USER (or group) from buying all our products, downloading them, then launching his own business inside China, spamming 100 million people, charging a dollar for all our products, then he closes his business after 7 days pocketing millions of dollars and now all our products appear free all over the China web, and probably other countries too? We have a team of designers and linguists who put a lot of effort and time into developing beautiful products and we’d like to launch in China, but … cautiously! Thank you!

Thanks again for your attention to this!


Posted: Sunday Jul 28th, 2013 at 11:17 pm #54312

That is a relief, because all of our computers are showing that the file is still accessible.

Posted: Friday Jun 7th, 2013 at 1:42 am #51572

We’re still getting that error message, however our bucket was setup in lowercase to begin with:
“Unable to auto-configure Amazon® CloudFront Distributions.
Error code: 400. Error Message: Unable to update existing Amazon® S3 ACLs. Unable to update existing Amazon® S3 Bucket Policy. Bad Request”

We bought and installed the Pro version approx two weeks ago, but all our members’ language training content is in video and audio form, so it really defeats the purpose if this doesn’t work.

We followed instructions from the pem file, etc.
We’re hosted on WPEngine.

So I assume the steps we should take are the following:
1. apply a must-use plugin
2. if that doesn’t work, try Jason’s other workaround adding the case delete lines in the code.

Viewing 10 replies - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)

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