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  1. Our VIP members are very important to the continued success of Police Community. Without that contribution to our online home we would not be able to keep this place going in the same way. As a result we are keen to demonstrate how we are striving to make your use of the forum much improved on a standard user account so that you feel you are rewarded for your contribution to Police Community. We have introduced a number of unique VIP only features and there are more to come .... Member Moods As the world of social media and online communities grow we have seen a few things be core to any successful platform. One of theses is for the member to be able to express how they are currently feeling. Here at Police Community we are calling this Moods. VIP Members will be able to update their mood any time and expand the default text to be specific to them. Simply click on the Moods icon in the top right corner of the forum header and set your mood. Your mood will then show on all your posts in the profile card next to each post. Moods are visible to all members but only VIP members can have or change a mood. Once your mood is selected it will appear on your profile card as follows; Enhanced Editor Whilst using the site the editor changes slightly dependant upon what device you are using at the time. On a desktop machine you will get a very different browser editor whilst using our forum to that you will see on a tablet and further still on a mobile device. We have taken this one step further. Standard members will see a standard toolbar in the editor across the site where VIP members will have many more options available in their editor just to make things easier for you. A standard member's editor looks as follows; A VIP Members editor will look as follows; Emoticons Ok - so we all enjoy using emoticons, it's become part of the way we communicate online. Our standard members will still have access to the 'Classic' emoticons we had before but we have introduced many more categories and modern emoticons available to VIP account holders. Simply click the emoticon icon in any editor and click on the category drop down menu that appears. More will be added in the fullness of time to enhance our VIP members online experience. A standard member will see; A VIP Member will see; Upgrading your account is easy and in reality costs hardly anything. Just £5 will give you a one years VIP Membership, that is less than 2p per day but all these contributions help to keep Police Community moving forward and developing further. You can of course sign up to our Lifetime VIP Membership for a one off fee of just £30 View Membership Plans By Clicking 'Membership' From The Main Menu
  2. Many people use icons in text messages as a way of expressing emotions People using the little icons which denote happy, sad or other emotions in their text messages could be racking up big bills, the BBC has learned. Consumer website MoneySavingExpert has received a large number of complaints about the issue. It seems to affect older models of phones, including some Samsung and Apple handsets. In Scotland, a woman ran up bills totalling over £1,000 after adding emoticons to text messages. Sad face The issue revolves around how the handset interprets the icons, known as emoticons or emojis. In some cases, especially on older handsets, the emoticons are converted into MMS (multi-media service) messages which can cost up to 40p each depending on the network. MoneySavingExpert also found that, in some cases, users creating their own icons from full-stops, commas and brackets found they were converted into emoticons, running up the same charges. "We have seen many complaints from our users who have racked up huge bills for sending what they thought were text messages," Guy Anker, managing editor, told the BBC. Paula Cochrane told the Daily Record that she had no idea that the emoticons were being charged as picture messages. She complained to her provider EE and also plans to take her case to the Scottish ombudsman, an independent organisation that settles consumer complaints. "There are a number of factors which can affect whether customers are charged for sending an emoji usually by the settings on the handset and so it is a manufacturer - rather than a network - issue," an EE spokesperson told the BBC. Unlimited texts Mr Anker thinks that operators need to take some of the blame. "It is worth complaining to mobile phone providers if this was not made clear enough to you when you would be charged for a picture message," he said. "Why on earth would someone sending a text message think it would be sent as a picture message?" Many people will have a contract which allows unlimited texts but this may not apply to picture messages, he added. "If you send a lot of these you may exceed your allowance very quickly," he said. O2 said it had seen other examples of text messages converting into picture messages. "If a customer is using a smartphone to send text messages to more than one person at the same time, they could be charged the cost of sending an MMS. It can also happen when the message contains icons, emoticons and symbols or an email address. And some apps (such as Facebook) that integrate with a customer's contact list in their smartphone may result in an MMS charge too," it said in a statement. "To stop this happening, customers should make sure they don't include symbols, icons or emoticons and also disable the integration between their contact list and apps like Facebook." Some smartphones will alert customers when an SMS has converted to an MMS, it added. Mr Anker advised users to regularly check their bills and also to consider using free text messaging services such as Apple's iMessage (which is free when sent to another Apple device) or WhatsApp. Clear rules I n the autumn, Ofcom conducted a survey looking at all the reasons why people received higher-than-expected bills. Emoticons being billed as picture messages had affected 4% of those who responded to the survey. "Mobile network providers decide how these messages are charged, and Ofcom has clear rules in place to ensure prices are transparent. "We would expect operators to make clear how much MMS messages cost under your tariff, and when those charges would apply," a spokesman told the BBC http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-31148424 Never realised this could happen! Quite glad i have got a latest handset!
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