This year’s Walk Your AS Off (WYASO) event is almost upon us!
A few small things have changed this year that we want to let you know about, but first an announcement… drum roll, please… We have a brand new site!!!
That’s right. We listened to your concerns with the old site, and the technical problems it was causing, and we have remedied them with a purpose-built site that has been built from the ground up.
We have also got a brand new “clean” database that is compatible with the new site. This does mean, however, that you will need to recreate your user accounts and teams for this year, but you don’t need to do that every year. And don’t worry, we have saved all the legacy step counts to go towards our goal of reaching Mars. In fact on the homepage of the new site you can see a handy progress bar that shows you the current overall step count, so we can all keep one eye on the goal. And no, it’s not broken, we really do have that much to go to reach our goal!
You may have noticed that the new site for logging steps is no longer on WalkYourASOff.com, and instead on our main charity website WalkASOne.org. We have done this for one main reason: we want to encourage you to log steps all year round, not just during WYASO. Going forward we intend to hold more events through the year, they will all differ in length, purpose, and title, but all the step logging will happen in one place. This means that if your team wants to participate in one or more of the other events, you will not have to make a new team on a separate website and get your walkers to sign up yet again. Having one central place to log your steps and have your team communicate with each other seemed like a common-sense solution.
We do hope you enjoy the new site. We have tested it extensively, but there are bound to be one or two minor bugs as we ramp up this year’s event. Please, if you find one, tell us about it so we can fix it (or get it fixed) ASAP. You can do so by emailing us directly on firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have created a short video walkthrough of the site if you want to see how to make a profile and join a team. Though we hope it is intuitive enough to use without. The video can be found here on our YouTube channel.
A few noteworthy changes
- You can now create and log into your accounts with Twitter, Facebook, and Google. No more trying to remember your passwords each year! Thought a traditional email sign up is still an option if you prefer.
- Gone are the days of recording your steps on a set day each week. You can now record your steps any time you wish. Whatever works for you and your team. You can record your steps on the website daily, weekly, or monthly. It does not matter anymore. The system is now flexible enough to do that. 🙂
- Teams now have the ability to send messages to each other! Each team has a message board on the team page so teams can message each other. This is especially handy for team captains to share announcements with their team, or for walkers to ask questions. Only your team can see these! Someone who is not a member of your team cannot read your messages. Inappropriate or spam messages can be reported to the admins with the “report message” button, for review and/or removal.
- If a member leaves your team, the steps they contributed no longer go with them. This was always something that felt unfair in the last implementation, so we have fixed it in the new site. The steps they logged while a member of your team stay with the team even when they leave. And although it is easier for walkers to leave and join a new team on their own (without the need of an admin to do it for them), they are restricted to only leaving and joining a new team once per 30 days, to avoid “team hopping” and potential abuse.
There are many other things we want to tell you about, but most are covered in the video tutorial. And if you have a question that has not been answered, get in touch with us and ask. We’d love to hear from you!
One last thing…
Some of you may have heard or participated in, the million step challenge before. We have had dwindling participation over the years so we have changed it for this year. Instead of aiming to walk one million steps through the months of April and May, we want you to aim for a million steps during the whole year. This means the challenge is more accessible to those of us that are less able-bodied, too. We hope to be able to give you something for your accomplishment when you reach one million steps, but that will be an announcement for another day. Hope that makes sense?
We are so excited about this years WYASO, and we hope you are too. Don’t forget to register your new account here to participate. And also ‘like’ us on Facebook and Instagram to keep up-to-date with the event as it progresses.