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Explanations and instructions of all things Writing.Com.
#699192 added June 22, 2010 at 6:31am
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Referred Member Tracking
One of the best ways our members can help and support Writing.Com is by sharing their own public portfolio with friends, relatives and associates. This assists us in growing our community by bringing more people to read, rate and review. To recognize those who bring in new members by use of valid referral links, Writing.Com awards "Recognitions" for each of those new members who signs up and maintains their membership.

How does this work?
New visitors to Writing.Com are tagged using a browser based internet "cookie". A "cookie" is a small file stored by the web browser on the visitor's computer. When a new visitor views his or her very first page on Writing.Com, our cookie records the username associated with that page. If that visitor later signs up for his or her own account, the member whose username the visitor viewed first is given one "Recognition" for that referral.

What are "Recognitions"?
"Community Recognition is an overall summary of a member's presence within the Writing.Com community. Recognitions are calculated by adding together the numbers of referred members, review recognitions, qualified merit badges, qualified Awardicons, and Bonus Recognitions. A member's Community Recognition is displayed as a linked number following their handle. For example: The StoryMistress

Clicking on the number launches a window which contains the details of that member's Community Recognition. When you come across a Writing.Com member with a high Referred Member number, please take a moment to thank them for their efforts. They have helped our community grow by bringing more people to read, rate and review! For more information on boosting your Referred Member number, read: Promoting Your Portfolio URL .

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an "rfrid"?
The rfrid is a URL variable that can be appended to any Writing.Com URL in order to properly track and credit existing members for the referral of new members. For example "rfrid=" is your rfrid append.

How do I generate a URL with my rfrid included?
At the very bottom of EVERY Writing.Com page, you will find a link called Refer A Member. Just click that link and a small pop-up will provide you with the correct referring URL to hand out. You will receive recognition each time a new visitor joins our community after first visiting that page.

Is there a way to see who my Referred Members are?
Yes! When you click your community recognition number, you will launch a pop-up with detailed information about your recognition. When you click the referred members count, you will open another window with details about which members you have referred to Writing.Com. Please note that for privacy reasons, members do have the ability to exclude themselves from having their specific usernames shown to you on this listing. If members have chosen to be excluded, you will not be told who they are.

When a Referred Member is counted, other than cookies issues, how are they counted?
The new member must have gone directly to a URL with your rfrid OR to your public portfolio either by accessing it through your public portfolio URL:
OR by clicking the portfolio in your handle display:

Each new member to Writing.Com will only be credited to one member's username. The member to receive the recognition is either the very first PORTFOLIO (not item) a visitor views or the very first correctly tagged rfrid URL. Remember, no recognition is given unless the visitor signs up and becomes a member.

I haven't given any rfrid tagged URLs or my public portfolio URL to anyone, but I have one or more Referred Members attributed to me. Why?
On occasion, this may occur if a person has come to Writing.Com without being referred by another member. They might then find and click on your portfolio icon first and then sign up for an account. Remember that the chances of getting referral counts from this method are slim as you have to be the very FIRST portfolio they view.

How long does Writing.Com's tracking cookie last?
The cookie is set to expire after two (2) months. This means that a visitor has 60 days to sign up with Writing.Com from the first time they visit the site. After this, the cookie will expire and remove itself from the visitor's computer.

Please note: Due to the nature of cookies, a small percentage of members are not accurately tracked. Additionally, to be tracked correctly, visitors must register for an account from the same computer with which they first visited Writing.Com.

My Referred Members number decreased. Why did this happen?
Inactive Writing.Com members who haven't logged on within the last 3 months are purged from our database approximately once every month. The number is also affected when a member deletes his or her own account.

How long have you been tracking referrals?
We have been tracking member referrals since October 2001.

I did not receive a Referred Member recognition that I think I should have received. What can I do?
Our referral system is completely automatic. There are a variety of things that can happen in the process that can lead to a lack of referral recognition including a visitor's errors with web browser software, URL/rfrid or system tracking. If, for any reason, you do not receive referral recognition for bringing someone to the site, unfortunately, there is no way we can update the referral recognition information and it can not be awarded.

Please remember that bringing new people to your favorite online writing community is a big reward in itself. We sincerely appreciate everyone's efforts in bringing new members to Writing.Com. Our policies regarding unrecorded referrals should not be taken as anything but a technical issue. We sincerely apologize for any trouble this may cause and we hope it does not diminish your interest in helping us bring more writers together. Thank you very much for your support!1

Recommended Reading

1  Written by The StoryMistress

© Copyright 2010 The StoryMistress (UN: storymistress at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
The StoryMistress has granted Writing.Com, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.
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