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  1. If you're anything like me, first off–you'll wish I would stop making self-deprecating jokes here, second–you may find yourself wishing there was a way to know when group buys go live on Media Psychos that doesn't involve begging other members to tag you if they discover them first. As we psychos have come to learn, the earlier you get on the request list the better when it comes to securing copies of highly coveted steelbooks. Media Psychos is proud to announce that it's now here to help you do that very thing. Before beginning to detail this new process, here are its caveats. This is a work in progress there may be glitches with specific retailers that have yet to present themselves or that are being worked on already. It relies on third party software whose functionality is beyond our control. We're giving you a recommendation of software to use based on our experimentation, but you're free to use any software that you think will produce a similar result. Because of the potential issues, it is not recommended to rely solely on this process to be informed of newly opened group buys. To be certain you don't miss out, it's advised that you continue visiting the site as usual. This is intended as a helpful tool; not a guaranteed feature. The process is a little more advanced than the previous tutorial detailing group buy tracking. Because of this, we are instituting a new award called "Power User". If you try out the process as detailed and successfully receive group buy notifications, please post a screen shot in the comments of this thread. Those that do will receive this new award, fresh from the creative mind of our Art Manager, @Bunaldinho. You know you want one! That's it for the disclaimers. Now for the process: As previously mentioned, a 3rd party app is necessary to be able to get group buy push notifications and the tool recommended for the task that will be detailed here is called "Hooks". It can be downloaded here: iPhone Android I'll be demonstrating on an iPhone, but the functionality should be similar, if not identical on Android. If you've followed the previous tutorial on setting up a Group Buy tracking stream, you may have created the bonus stream at the very end that will generate a list of all active group buys. If you didn't follow the tutorial and don't care to (or like to avoid confusion), here's a quick link to that stream again: All Group Buys After you've installed the Hooks app on your device, go ahead and click the link above to generate the GB stream on your device or access it like so (if you've created it previously): You should now see a list of group buys that looks like this: Scroll down to the bottom of the page where you will see a link labeled "RSS". We want to copy this link to the clipboard. To do so on an iPhone, lightly press and hold the link until this menu pops up, from which you'll select the "Copy" option. I don't know how you do it on an Android, but I'm sure it's similar: With the RSS link copied to the clipboard, it's time to open the Hook app we installed in step 1. You'll be greeted with a login screen like this. I'm going to give you the "skip to the operator" instructions which will breeze through initial set-up. You can toy with these options later. We start by selecting "Skip". What we're skipping here is the login option that would allow you to sync between devices. You don't need to be logged in for a single device to use the app. You'll now see a screen that looks like this and is a quick start set-up of what they call "essential" notifications. They're not essential for our purposes, so we'll skip for now by selecting "Done" in the top right corner: It will try once again to get you to pick some stuff, but we're going to tell it that "I want to learn on my own". It will then ask you if you want to allow notification. We absolutely do, so click "Allow": Now we're going to take a brief detour into phone settings. Again, Android users will have to find like settings on their phones. From the Settings menu, find the option for "Notifications" From there, find the Hooks app and select the type of notification you would like: I prefer persistent notifications that don't go away until I dismiss them. That way I don't accidentally swipe away a notification, never to be heard from again. Change any other setting here to your taste: Now that our alerts are established, let's return to the Hooks app and manually set-up a notification from this screen by clicking the plus sign in the top right corner: You will then see a list of topics to choose from. Our topic of interest is RSS Feed, so go ahead and select that. From this screen go ahead and name the alert topic something highly imaginative like "MP Group Buys". Remember that link we copied way back in Step 4? Go ahead & paste it into the field for "RSS URL". If, for some.reason, it's no longer in your clipboard, repeat steps 2-4 and return here. After clicking "Done", our custom group buy notification is set up. So what happens next? Well, nothing immediately. Just set it and forget and if you did it all right, eventually you'll get a notification that looks something like this: It's telling you that a group buy has gone live. In testing, it's taken anywhere from a minute to 20 or so for the notification to pop after a GB was posted. If you have badge notifications, you should see a count of how many alerts have been pushed (assuming you're only using Hooks for group buy alerts!) Clicking the app icon will bring up the list of all notifications alerting you to go join a group buy pronto! And that's it. Phew! Hope it worked out for you and that you'll find it much easier to stay informed about group buys to come. -.45 Update: If you're having trouble with the tutorial on an Android, member @E-Film has been kind enough to document the process he was able to successfully implement on that side of the street. Please check out: E-Film's Android Walkthrough HERE
  2. So you've successfully completed the Phase 1 Tracking Tutorial and are able to recall all the Group Buys you've joined. You may now be asking, "Great, but what do I do with this newfound recall?" or maybe that's just me. Well, need it or not, Media Psychos is proud to announce that it's here to help you some more by providing a tool for you to put that knowledge into an actionable format, a spreadsheet. Now, spreadsheets aren't for everyone and their utility is not always apparent; but this one is set up in a way that will help you to track pending group buys and forecast what they'll potentially cost with a few handy formulas. Teaching how to use a spreadsheet is beyond the scope of this tutorial. If the very word makes you want to hide in a cupboard, this may not be for you. If you're still on board, however, and want to know if it can be of use, the spreadsheet is located here: Group Buy Tracking Template It contains some initial sample data, but is only viewable as is. To be able to edit your own copy, you need to do one of 2 things. If logged in to Google, you can make a copy of the spreadsheet to your own Google storage by selecting this option in the "File" menu in Google Sheets. You will then see a dialogue box asking what to name it and where to save it (on Google Drive). If you're aren't logged into Google, the first option will not be available from the File menu, however you can export the spreadsheet as an Excel document by selecting the "Download as" option instead. This isn't the best option, however, as the formulas in the spreadsheet use Google Sheets syntax. If you don't have a Google account, why don't you have a Google account? From there you will have the option of opening in whatever spreadsheet program you have installed or saving directly. I haven't even tried it in another program; so again, I recommend the first option. So, the basic functionality is as follows: Enter information about the title and editions in columns A-E. If some variation of "To Update" is entered as the "Edition" in column C, that gets flagged and pops red in the summary at the top of the page to remind us how many titles we need to update! The "Group By Close" date in D will turn red if the date has been entered and has passed and you snoozed away your chance to request an edition. The "Cost Estimate" in Column F is just that, our best guess at what it will cost based on our existing knowledge of premium pricing. This is to help people to forecast how much they need to squirrel away for the GBs they've committed to and is also flagged and pops in red in the top summary as "Estimate Owed". The "Estimate Owed" is the total minus what's already been paid out (which is summarized below that in "Paid to Date"). The "Shipping Method" in column G is a pulldown with the options of "Direct" and "HUB" since those are really the only options we offer at present (we're still working on teleportation). As 2 payments are generally required an amount must be added to both ""1st Payment Amt" and "2nd Payment Amt" for the "Total Paid" field to turn green. Until then, if there is an item with a shipping method selected but incomplete payment, the field in "Total Paid" will remain red. If there was actually only a single invoice required, then just put "0" in the "2nd Payment Amt" field to mark the item as paid and have it turn green. The total amount of items that still need to be paid for (either partially or in full) are summarized in the top section as well under "To Pay". Finally, the totally amount already paid out to MP is in the top summary as "Paid to Date" and is calculated from Column L ("Total Paid"). As previously mentioned, this is subtracted from the total amount that you have estimated to owe in "Estimate Owed". Easy right? Well, it's all easier than it sounds…I think. Give it a whirl and feel free to offer some feedback. I hope you find it useful. If not, then just forget you ever saw me (I'll be hiding in the cupboard). -.45
  3. A new feature has been added to the International Chat areas of the forums. You can now selectively hide topics in these areas to prevent them from appearing in your Activity streams. The process is very simple. Here you can see the default activity stream showing one of the very active French topics. If you don't speak French, you may prefer to not see this when checking for new activity on the site. To hide this discussion, you can now simply click down to the topic and you will see a button to "Ignore this topic". It will ask you to confirm after clicking. Once ignored, if you check the main activity feed again: You will no longer see the topic's comments in your activity feed (though you will still see reactions). That's it! If you decide you miss @Benoit46 (how could you not?) and the rest of the discussion in this topic, simply revisit the topic and click the "Stop ignoring this topic" button.

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