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Feature Request: Require active subscription to post comments

Kevin M. Cox 4 months ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Christine Masters (Director of Product Management) 1 month ago 2

We're seeing a large increase in comment spam lately so I'd like to formally make the feature request for something that I know I talked to support about in the past. We require email confirmation when new accounts are created but obviously the spammers have automated their way around that.

I'd like an option to require an active subscription to post comments on the site. This offers numerous benefits to all Town News customers:

• Provides another perk or subscriber benefit to paying readers.

• Potential to increase Day Pass sales for those who aren't subscribers but really want to share their opinion or comment.

• Reduces comment spam to virtually zero.

I could see it being useful to allow this setting to be toggled per URL/section so that for example you could allow anyone to comment on obituaries but not news stories.

1. All of the items listed above.

2. Every day.

3. Every reader.

Please let me know if anyone has thoughts or questions!




Tie ad blocker detection (does it work?) to member / subscriber recruitment.

Jay Allred 2 months ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Kevin M. Cox 1 month ago 1

It makes sense to me is to closely tie adblocker detection with subscription / membership recruitment. 

So - for example - if an adblocker is detected, BLOX should notify the reader and encourage them to whitelist the site AND allow publishers to direct the reader to support our work through a membership / subscription.


Publishers should be able to easily modify the message the reader sees to make it fit within the corporate "voice" of the organization.


Publishers could also be given the option to allow an ad-free experience to readers who become subscribers / members. 

It could work something like this:

Reader: I hate ads and use an ad blocker.

Us: We get it, but if you want to view our content for free, we need you to tolerate the ads. They are the price of admission. But, if you become a member / subscriber, we can offer you and ad-free experience. Sound good?

Reader choice 1: Totally! I want to become a subscriber today!
Us response 1: Great! Here's a link to become a subscriber.

Reader choice 2: No thanks, but I'll white list you so the ads come through.
Us response 2: Thanks! If you ever want to become a subscriber, here's how.

Reader choice 3: No way, you suck. I'm keeping my ad blocker and not paying you a dime. 
Us response 3: We're sorry to hear that. But since we have to pay our bills and the news is not free to report, we'll have to say goodbye for now. 


IDEA: Paywall options for collections, section pages

Marcus Fitzsimmons 1 month ago in BLOX Total CMS • updated by Kevin M. Cox 1 month ago 1

We're in the process of locking down more content behind our paywall and have run into a limitation.

We'd like to lock our entire obit section behind the paywall so only subscribers can see the page that contains the assets. (Its obits, once you see the name, it just takes a google name search and you have the funeral home's page)

What would be a great help is either

1) Ability to make a section page require a subscription to view


2) the ability to move a collection behind the paywall

We're looking at it for some other cases, but if a collection is behind the wall, then in the case where headlines give away too much, having the option  where only subscribers could view them would also remedy the problem.


Photo Mechanic and photo author/byline

Erica Smith 1 month ago in BLOX Total CMS • updated by Kevin M. Cox 1 month ago 1

Is anyone who's using Photo Mechanic having luck getting the photo author field to populate? We have it working with bylines ... but there are other advantages to adding the name as an author (and I'm tired of doing it manually on all of our staff photos).

Under review

Remove Google Street View from Featured Marketplace Business.

Jeff Sebestyen 1 month ago in BLOX CMS • updated 1 month ago 3

All my business that are featured default to a Google Street View.  I do not see an option to remove the Google Street View.  There should be a Custom Property, or even an application setting for completely disable this.  

  • Some businesses use a home address, so the guys house is on the masthead.  
  • Some street views simply are of the back of the business, or have an incorrect image, or has an inappropriate image.  
  • Other times, this simply ruins the style of the page.

Why is there a Custom Property for everything but this?  Why is this being forced upon me? Please humble me, and show me there is a simple checkbox that I am missing.  

There is a Default Masthead Image that will appear which will generate a Street View of the business. This can be over-ridden by uploading a Masthead Image.


Hi Jeff, 

This can be disabled entirely by navigating to URL Page Properties for your business directory URL.  Under the Business settings you'll find the setting "Streetview Masthead" with the option to turn it off. 

Under review

I'm having trouble setting up an Alexa Flash Briefing.

kathy 4 months ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Robert 1 month ago 4

Support says I need a proxy server. Has anyone else got this working that would point me in the right direction please?


Customizing Metered Visits message in Flex.

Jeff Sebestyen 1 month ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Christine Masters (Director of Product Management) 1 month ago 2

I would like for the ability to customize the Metering Messages within the Community > Subscription settings, the same location that I can customize the emails to customers that have bought a subscription.  

Otherwise, I am looking to see what file can be edited to changed the Metering Message when a user has 9 out of 10 free stories to view.  Is this CSS or UTL even customizable by the customer?


Hi guys!

We're working on an easier module that will allow these to be customized in the admin UI. However, we did implement the code in a way that makes it easy to override these messages at a custom UTL level.

Here is a page with details on the specific macros you can override.


If you don't have access to edit the UTL as described, please contact our Customer Support and they should be able to help.


Unwanted space created by empty section

tbhall 2 months ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Christine Masters (Director of Product Management) 1 month ago 7


Is there any way to prevent an empty section from creating unwanted space? 

As shown in the screenshots below: masthead-full-top is creating a space in the header that I can't seem to get rid of. Using the inspect element tool in Chrome I can't find CSS to remove the issue, and the section isn't editable itself.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!


Creating/Editing Editorial/Classified Assets via Webservices API

Robert Dundon 11 months ago in BLOX CMS • updated by TOEFL Masters 1 month ago 3

Just wondering if that's a planned feature or not.

Under review

How can I fix "Reader View" on FLEX?

Nick 1 year ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Robert Dundon 1 month ago 4

Safari and Apple's mobile devices have what's known as "Reader View." It's a nice, clean way to read articles online. We just launched our FLEX site and I see I can use Reader View but when I try it only shows the headline, in-story ads and tagline. I've checked other FLEX sites and they seem to work fine.

What could be preventing it from working on my site?

Under review

Change to how 'buy now' logic interacts with AP photos

Kyle Whitfield 2 months ago in BLOX CMS • updated 2 months ago 4

Idea: Revise how the 'buy now' button logic interacts with AP photos ... either add more commonly used AP byline phrases or find a way to better auto detect AP photos moving from Merlin to BLOX

1. What problem(s) does this idea solve? AP, from best we can tell, doesn't have a standardized way of formatting bylines. Some say "Name/AP Photo," some say, "Associated Press file photo," some say XXX "via AP." The "buy now" rule for BLOX stipulates the byline must be 'associated press' or 'ap photo' for the button to disable.

2. Why do you need this idea implemented? Provide as many problems or use cases as possible. We're having too many wire photos go on our site that are for sale that we're not licensed to sell.

3. How often would you use this feature? Daily

4.How many people in your organization would use this feature? The entire company, 200+ people


NCAA Men's basketball bracket

jami.christopher 2 months ago 0

Will you be doing any online bracketology options for the NCAA Men's basketball tournament? Might be a good way to sale some advertising especially for your college accounts.

Under review

Feature request: URL/titles for SEO

Kyle Whitfield 1 year ago in BLOX CMS • updated by Christine Masters (Director of Product Management) 2 months ago 5

Instead of URLs picking up an asset's title then generating new URLs when titles are changed, could we consider an SEO title field where an editor could manually define a phrase that would appear in a URL? And the URL wouldn't change as the asset's headline changes?

Example: Story about mass shooting in Baton Rouge

SEO/URL title: Baton Rouge mall shooting
Article asset title: 5 dead in Baton Rouge mall shooting

URL (that wouldn't change): theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/baton_rouge_mall_shooting/XYZABC123.html

Right now we shy away from opting for titles in URLs b/c of the mess it creates with multiple URLs per asset.

This would be used very often by us.


Embed form into story, or onto page

Meagen Finnerty 2 months ago in BLOX CMS 0

I'm not sure if this has already been cracked, but it would be so nice if forms generated embed codes so we could put them at the bottom of stories, or embed them onto a landing page. Right now, we either link to them or use a third-party form that we can embed. 


Geotargeting doesn't seem to be accurate

Nick 2 months ago in BLOX CMS 0

From time to time we have some national brands that want to advertise on our website. Many of those are only interested in certain zip codes. The problem is that I look up my IP online and some websites show I'm in the correct city but others show me in a different state entirely. BLOX seems to be the former in this instance and therefore I don't see the ads. This cuts out a lot of our ad impressions. I've even gone so far as to set a radius 100 miles from my zip code and still get nothing.

So is there anything that can be done to more accurately pinpoint where our users are located? Does anyone else ever experience this?