Updated 12/27/07 -- Have questions about the Firefighter Nation platform? We'll be posting an FAQ soon, but in the meantime please feel free to post questions here directly.
1) Can we rank members in our friends list?
Not yet, but the software developers promise its in the works. The default order of friends is most recently added.
2) Can we search members, tell if they are logged in or when they were last on?
Member search is somewhat limited by name, but again expect significant enhancements to this in the coming weeks and months. When you 'Invite More' and enter/upload your contact lists, if someone on your e-mail list is already a member, it will show up! One easy way to find members of similar interests will be the group feature. Anyone can add a group for your area, topic of interest or your own department. Another feature being planned in the upcoming additions to the software will be the ability to see when a user/friend was last on and if they are on now, so stay tuned.
3) Who manages the site?
Firefighter Nation is a networking project by Dave Iannone, the founder and former publisher of Firehouse.com
. The project is not affiliated with Dave's former employer (which owns Firehouse.com) nor his current employer (Red 7 Media
). Dave has over 20 years experience in the fire/rescue service with the Hyattsville (Md) Volunteer FIre Department
4) What is Ning?
Ning is just the software that powers the social network aspects of the site. Ning has thousands of other networks and once you sign-in here, you can participate in others without starting over. If you only are a member here, that's great too! Your information is never shared with anyone. You'll see references to 'Ning' in various parts of the program occasionally, so don't worry about that. The software we're using is one of the more advanced social network applications online and they are continually adding features.
5) What is the easiest way to invite people to the network and/or my group?
You can easily invite and add dozens (or more) people to Firefighter Nation or your individual group by clicking the 'Invite More' link in the sign-in box on all pages. You can also securely import your GMail, AOL and other web-based mail program contact lists by following the instructions there.
6) How can I make my group 'exclusive'?
When you go to the 'Groups' tab and create a new group, you can make it open to anyone OR just those you choose to invite...instantly creating a private network for your department or organization within Firefighter Nation. Within each group is independent forums/message boards you can also use for document sharing and more within your group. Remember, this setting is forever ... so once you make a group private, you can't go back. So be sure you want to limit access to your group before selecting the type. Of course, if you are only going to use the network for your department and include department specific information, downloads, etc. a private group is a great option.
7) How can I make my profile Private?
You can make your profile private, adjust your notification and comment settings, and more by going to the 'My Network Settings' link from the userbox at the top right when you are logged in. You can also override your default settings for each specific blog, photo or video when you add them individually. (So if your default is to only show your profile to friends, but you want a particular photo or blog viewable by anyone, its as easy as the click of the mouse when you add it.)
8) How do I change the appearance of my profile?
You can adjust the appearance and theme of your profile by following the 'My Page' link in the top navigation when you are logged on, and then clicking the 'Edit Page Apperance' link. From there you can change your template, color scheme and other advanced settings to update your background image and more. Even more cool templates and profile customization options are coming soon to the system.
9) What is acceptable blog and site content?
Pretty much anything related to your life, the fire service, just about anything except
posts, blogs, and content on your profiles including photos and video that contain excessive profanity, nudity, or other types of offensive content, suspicious/spam/phishing links, attempts to get personal information from other users that is not welcome, etc. will be removed. The webmaster reserves the right to remove such content and users without advance notice. This is an all ages site. Users may remove suspect or inappropriate content by using the 'Report an Issue' link at the bottom of every page. Additionally, any material that is protected by copyright laws
including news stories, photos or other materials will be removed if reported/found.
10) What is acceptable use of this service by a commercial company??
Commercial companies are welcome to have profiles on the site but please do NOT send unsolicited messages or friend requests to our members. Additionally, any forum posts, blogs or other content uploads that are intended to solicit business, promote offerings, etc. are not permitted. Complaints will result in your profile being terminated. We will be monitoring this closely during the first few weeks so please understand if these guidelines are adjusted as time goes on.
I'll continue to add questions (and answers) as they arise. Please feel free to post any new ones below! And most of all, have fun!