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What makes a good "Live From..."?

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1. Please don't spend 3-5 long posts, complete with pics, of your airplane seat/drinks and peanuts on the plane, the arrival at the hotel/bushes in front of the hotel, check in process/selfies standing in line. I just stop reading if it's too much pre-cruise stuff.

 

2. Please use humor! My favorite all time thread: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=679082&page=3

 

3. Keep it real-time. The more contemporary the post, the more it feels like you're taking us all along with you. That's the point of the live from, IMHO.

 

4. FWIW, I don't mind selfies and pics of your family/traveling party. I love them. Makes me know who I'm armchair traveling with. I also like to compare the stressed out, bland faces at the beginning of the cruise to the relaxed, tanned faces (and little girls with braids) at the end of the cruise.

 

5. Please no pictures of food! They take too long to load and require too much scrolling. What may look heavenly to you after a long day looks like a triangle of cake and a scoop of ice cream to me. Or hey look, three shrimp on some lettuce.

 

Above all, thanks for using your internet minutes to take us along. I've done five live froms and they were all a lot of fun- but expensive to do.

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It is a labor of love to do one...I did my first one last summer from the Royal Princess, right after this new ship was launched. Needless to say it got a lot of viewers and commenters and was great fun..but it took up a lot of internet minutes so be prepared!!

 

Things I tried to do:

 

Post every day...Once you commit to do one, I feel that daily updates are in order...sometimes you see someone announcing a Live From, then you never hear from them for days!

 

Answer questions. People asked a lot of good questions...I found that this got me out and about to some areas on the ship that I might have not visited and I learned a lot. Readers, don't pose questions about specific cabins or balconies unless that is the cabin or cabin class the author is in, as there is not way to answer these without being in the cabin

 

Humor...yes, it must be interesting to read...and please do not type one big paragraph as it is too hard to read.

 

And finally for all of the Live Post readers...PLEASE do not hit Quote on the entire post. It is annoying as you are trying to get to the bottom and find whatever question or comment you have and you have to scroll through too much...

Edited by sunsetbeachgal

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Thank you all for the excellent hints, tips, and suggestions. It looks like the opinion on food shots comes down both for and against. DW said, "We're not taking pictures of all our food, are we?" - so I think it's safe to assume that we won't be doing a plate-by-plate diary - especially since I don't want to be stabbed by a fork. :) On the other hand, I'm sure we'll have some food glamour shots if there's a particularly pretty dish.

 

This is an extremely helpful thread and we want to express our gratitude to everyone who has offered suggestions.

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I find that too many pictures brings my browser to a crawl and makes a thread virtually unreadable. I especially appreciate threads like this where pictures are inserted as links where I can click on the link and see the picture if it looks interesting or continue on if not.

 

Today we took a Private Crystal Tour while we were in Dakar, Senegal. This was our first visit to this West African Port. A good portion of our tour was to Goree Island where many slaves were held before they were shipped to places in Europe and the United States.

 

We visited the House Of Slaves which was built in 1776. This was not a house in the sense we think of a house but rather it was where the Slaves were held captive. Some died there while others died on boats.

 

As I walked the house I tried to focus on how horrific it must have been on this Island, in this house, and during the lives these people had as Slaves after reaching Europe and the USA.

 

As we walked I mentioned to our tour guide what really hits home is that in the context of history and in the scheme of things that slave trade occurred not too long ago and a reminder about how bad and hard life can be for so many people.

 

Statue that stands outside the House Of Slaves.

 

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iAwVZUv1X4w/U0aXm0lv2HI/AAAAAAAAkko/EZvugtBZN88/s1600/IMG_3011.jpg

 

One of several cells we saw where Slaves were imprisoned.

 

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-PlorfhqCKd0/U0aXpl_4b6I/AAAAAAAAkkw/fWVWHH7zmlw/s1600/IMG_3028.jpg

 

On another tour we did in 2010 at another African Port I remember we saw a cell which housed 150 slaves. They made life so hard for the slaves purposely to weed out the stronger ones. It is so hard for me to comprehend why people can be so cruel to their fellow man/woman.

 

This is a statue that was sent by the United States when President Bill Clinton was in office.

 

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-hHlNtDtKrMg/U0aZM5L1oCI/AAAAAAAAklk/H2PuZr3jtNA/s1600/IMG_3017.jpg

 

The local economy has a lot of challenges and many people do not have full time work and either make and/or sell items. This man was working on art to be sold.

 

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-CRP-lfik02I/U0aZSbjK3xI/AAAAAAAAkls/rUGWP6dL_dQ/s1600/IMG_3021.jpg

 

We saw various sizes of fishing vessels including men who fish in relatively small boats.

 

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HrcBOy5o_zg/U0aZhv92C0I/AAAAAAAAkmE/YFuFoE1KRaY/s1600/IMG_3025.jpg

 

There are additional photos on our Blog.

 

Travel is all about discovery and today provided us with an opportunity to learn about portions of history that do not speak well for how some treat others, but it is the history of the world and we can't run away from that. Today also provided an opportunity to see how challenging it is for many. It is another reminder to me that often I find that people complain about little things that seem so very small when one sees the struggles that many people around the word endure each and everyday.

 

Keith

 

I think readers also need a bit of patience. Daily reports are the goal, but sometimes the internet, especially on a ship just doesn't cooperate.

 

Roy

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And finally for all of the Live Post readers...PLEASE do not hit Quote on the entire post. It is annoying as you are trying to get to the bottom and find whatever question or comment you have and you have to scroll through too much...

 

It would also be helpful if such threads weren't cluttered with dozens of "Thanks for posting" or "Glad you're having a good trip" posts. I read the "Live From" threads to hear from the cruiser, not to read scores of value-less posts from readers who are on their couches at home.

 

Let's just assume we all wish the cruiser safe travels and thank him or her for the information. :)

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It would also be helpful if such threads weren't cluttered with dozens of "Thanks for posting" or "Glad you're having a good trip" posts. I read the "Live From" threads to hear from the cruiser, not to read scores of value-less posts from readers who are on their couches at home.

When I posted "Live From ..." threads I found the feedback most enjoyable. If nothing else, it kept the thread easy to find on the front page, which saves expensive time looking for it.

It also was a great motivator. I knew that people were reading what I posted, and made it feel like my efforts were worthwhile. I wasn't just talking to the ether. I felt like I was sharing my cruise with someone, and it was a good feeling to have feedback.

 

If you only want to read what the cruiser is posting, it's easy enough to filter out only those posts so nothing else shows.

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It would also be helpful if such threads weren't cluttered with dozens of "Thanks for posting" or "Glad you're having a good trip" posts. I read the "Live From" threads to hear from the cruiser, not to read scores of value-less posts from readers who are on their couches at home.

 

Let's just assume we all wish the cruiser safe travels and thank him or her for the information. :)

 

I've done a couple of live from threads. I liked having people say thank you because i know people are reading. I think the person should be thanked for the time and money they are spending. Isn't that only polite? Isn't it pretty easy to skip over these remarks?

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I've done a couple of live from threads. I liked having people say thank you because i know people are reading. I think the person should be thanked for the time and money they are spending. Isn't that only polite? Isn't it pretty easy to skip over these remarks?

 

I agree with Ruth C and Cruz chic...when I go back to post each day I enjoy seeing the short comments and thanks...but to reiterate, I did not like seeing my entire post quoted, then a short thank you at the end!!

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I also agree with RuthC and cruz chic that feedback is important to the reviewer. A live review is a lot of work and effort when you have to deal with the ship's internet issues and you're taking time from your cruise experience to write one. Having done two live reviews in the last six months, I found feedback encouraged me to continue with the review when I would have rather just relaxed. I would be interested in getting more feedback about posting photos within the review versus posting a link. Personally, I like seeing the photo within the review, but I also understand the frustration of a slow computer - anyone who's used the ship's internet understands that frustration.

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I also agree with RuthC and cruz chic that feedback is important to the reviewer. A live review is a lot of work and effort when you have to deal with the ship's internet issues and you're taking time from your cruise experience to write one. Having done two live reviews in the last six months, I found feedback encouraged me to continue with the review when I would have rather just relaxed. I would be interested in getting more feedback about posting photos within the review versus posting a link. Personally, I like seeing the photo within the review, but I also understand the frustration of a slow computer - anyone who's used the ship's internet understands that frustration.

 

I love your live from threads. You have the perfect amout of pics and words.

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No one is forced to look at pictures in a post on CC if they don't want to. Simply turn off Images in your User CP. The pictures then show up in the text as a code, which can be clicked on if you decide you do want to look at the picture. Pages load a lot faster without the pictures, but they are still right there to see.

 

Which brings up my suggestion to "Live From ..." posters that you post text prior to the picture that says what the subject of the picture is. That helps me decide if it's something I want to click on, and look at, or not.

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No one is forced to look at pictures in a post on CC if they don't want to. Simply turn off Images in your User CP. The pictures then show up in the text as a code, which can be clicked on if you decide you do want to look at the picture. Pages load a lot faster without the pictures, but they are still right there to see.

 

Which brings up my suggestion to "Live From ..." posters that you post text prior to the picture that says what the subject of the picture is. That helps me decide if it's something I want to click on, and look at, or not.

 

Thats a good tip. I like the pics but thats a great option for posters that don't. Thx.

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Another alternative for those who enjoy live from threads but not the pics is to ensure that when you post your pics that they are optimized for the internet. This makes the pics much easier to download.

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I read some really good suggestions.

 

I love to hear and lean about small cafes and off the main street venues worth seeking out.

 

Humor is always good... even when much the audience fails to understand it.

 

I realize you can't control what other CC members post, but is gets annoying having to scroll past the 6-inch long cc signatures that don't offer much other than taking up space.

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I read some really good suggestions.

 

I love to hear and lean about small cafes and off the main street venues worth seeking out.

 

Humor is always good... even when much the audience fails to understand it.

 

I realize you can't control what other CC members post, but is gets annoying having to scroll past the 6-inch long cc signatures that don't offer much other than taking up space.

 

You can also turn off signatures so you don't have to see them.

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I agree about image size constraints. We've been working on the Internet since it was coal fired and steam powered, so I typically try to get everything down to a reasonable size. The exception would be things that require a lot of detail and need to be higher resolution.

 

We use Evernote for things like menus and wine lists. They need to be readable which means larger files. In that case, I create Adobe Acrobat PDFs and upload them to the Evernote server. If someone wants to see them, they can click the link. If not, they can zoom on by.

 

Like so:

 

https://www.evernote.com/shard/s88/sh/10d061e8-dd51-4aee-ae78-90f7c270853f/4f3021b71afdaf7d9837aa6c44e0c557

 

As far as in-thread feedback, I agree that it takes more time to scroll past it, but we always appreciate the comments. They warm the cockles of our hearts. Sometimes, if the feedback is especially positive, the warmth spreads to the sub-cockle region or even the spleen.

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You can also turn off signatures so you don't have to see them.

Thanks for the tip! I just took advantage of turning off the signatures.

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Isn't it pretty easy to skip over these remarks?

 

Maybe, like you, I just don't have that much free time. ;)

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We agree with everything that Ellieanne said. If the live from could be a cross between what The Chardonne Sisters do and Lovely Serenity did it would be fantastic.;)

Edited by lazey1

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Menu's and daily planners for me are the best thing ...i like to be there vicariously choosing my meal, what activities I'd do. I also love pictures of the ports and what there is to see there as I haven't been everywhere ...YET ;)

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I agree about image size constraints. We've been working on the Internet since it was coal fired and steam powered, so I typically try to get everything down to a reasonable size. The exception would be things that require a lot of detail and need to be higher resolution.

 

We use Evernote for things like menus and wine lists. They need to be readable which means larger files. In that case, I create Adobe Acrobat PDFs and upload them to the Evernote server. If someone wants to see them, they can click the link. If not, they can zoom on by.

 

Like so:

 

https://www.evernote.com/shard/s88/sh/10d061e8-dd51-4aee-ae78-90f7c270853f/4f3021b71afdaf7d9837aa6c44e0c557

 

As far as in-thread feedback, I agree that it takes more time to scroll past it, but we always appreciate the comments. They warm the cockles of our hearts. Sometimes, if the feedback is especially positive, the warmth spreads to the sub-cockle region or even the spleen.

 

As a high school senior in 1970, I was in an advanced math class, along with an Aussie exchange student and a transfer from a California advanced school (who BTW turned out a few years later to become my BIL -- his sister was much prettier! :D) We had run of the school's "computer," using Basic, printed out on yellow paper tape, and connecting to the mainframe at the University of Oregon via a phone-line modulator-demodulator, which we (being 10 pounds of hipness in a 5-pound sack) shortened to "mod-demod". A few years later, some young whippersnapper shortened our phrase to "modem". So, I was around even before coal-fired and steam-powered networking.

 

But I went on to other paths, and much later came back to computers, only to find myself sometimes a troglodyte in the cloud, a Neanderthal looking for flint to flake to make spear points. So I don't know such things as Evernote. (But, I do know cockles ... and mussels, alive, alive-O).

 

I try to do "live froms" that convey information that I look for when I am searching the CC threads. After a while, I would insert links to photos. Lately, I've embedded the photos in threads. It's a conundrum -- include the photo for someone who wants the info, or don't because of bandwidth issues?

 

I do try to answer questions and requests (like for the cheese list ;)) as soon as I can while doing the reports.

 

I guess I'll just try to give as much info as I can, and try not to include trivia (unless I win the trivia contest that day!)

 

Dave

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Dave, you are another one of my favorite live from peeps. Just enough info and pics. I always read yours. You are very good at answering questions.

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I love all the little details. Conversational. Tell us about the characters you meet along the way. Describe the buildings, the sounds, smells. Funny anecdotes. And, pictures, pictures, pictures!!

 

In short, all the senses. What you see, hear, taste, smell, feel.

 

And, did I mention pictures? :)

 

THIS!!

 

I love pictures.

 

Sent from my DROID RAZR HD using Tapatalk

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