Currently, you can download files from a public Ning site, if you aren't a member. You have to register to comment but hey, no problem downloading content that registered members share (and who have to log in to post/upload).
I really think this has to change.
Please reply as your vote to get Ning to change this ASAP. It's not useful for building community.
Thanks for helping me get Ning's attention.
Sounds like a job for http://copyscape.com/CopyscapePremium.pdf I have no affiliation - just know a few sites that use it to protect their content from plagiarism.
It isn't about copyright. It is about downloading the files that registered members share.
Members share many files by attaching them to a post. However, any visitor can download that file/item. I'd like that they be requested to become a member when clicking on an uploaded file. This would help us get members and grow the community. There are as you allude, possible copyright reasons to do this for too.
Every community I know, asks users to register/login when downloading page content. I'm really clueless why Ning doesn't do this but might be because they didn't start this way and just don't want to do the work to make this happen. I'd like a compromise so we could make the ning api links prompt for sign up.
Thanks for the reply.
I like non-members being able to download posted files. Please don't assume you know what's best for all Ning Creators.
I have one Ning network that wants visitors from around the country to download a petition and get signatures from their friends and neighbors and fax or scan/email completed petitions back to the network. Getting petitions out and back is much more important than whether or not the users are members. But I also have two other Ning networks where I'm neutral on whether or not non-members can/can't download files.
What I would support is it being an option for each Ning Creator to make their own decisions about their own Ning network or networks. You lose support by mistakenly framing your issue as either/or.
As to your assertion that "It's not useful for building community," please don't try to inflict your opinion on everyone else.
Thank you for understanding.
I completely understand and yes of course as an option it should be.
I'm not "inflicting my opinion" on anyone. I'm simply stating my opinion.
My opinion is that through years of social networking, I've never seen a social network where it isn't common practice to ask guests to log in inorder to download content. Just like we do if they want to comment. People most often share files with the community proper, not the wider public.
I have made code (after much doing) that forces users to register to download content on my community. However, I'd much prefer if Ning do it for us. More stable, better functioning and I think overall (despite your case) for the benefit of the wider creator community.