Important Information For All Users (April 2nd 2019)

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475 comments

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    Sofia

    I sent a message to italki if they will put again the instant tutoring and the answer was:

     

    Hi Sofia,

    Thank you for sharing your feedback with us. We have been receiving a lot of feedback for the new website, and we are trying to consolidate some of the most common problems and find a solution. Thank you for your patience and we hope you will provide us with more feedback to make italki better.

    Regards, 

    Bruno
    italki Support

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    Sofia

    Eugene Ramirez

     

    By that logic, then, it can not be taught either. The instant is just a lesson at the moment. If it does not mean having the ability to teach in the instant then we also have no capacity for the other classes. Logic of the chicken

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    Sofia

    Susannah

     

    Most days I'm available until midnight. Even if I do not have classes so late, I usually stay online until that time and have students from different time zones. During the day in the intervals of other classes I also usually stay online. I agree with you, it's bad for italki

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    18ck

    I've only used instant tutoring a few times, mainly for my daughter when school is closed and I need to rustle up a French tutor at zero notice - but the loss of the community section - answers, notebooks and all that - seems like a huge backward step that will turn iTalki into a one-trick pony and drive away a lot of the casual users who might serve as a pool of potential students for the tutors on here. I'm a student, not a tutor, and I've already set up an account on a rival site which has tutoring plus the bits you are jettisoning and some more bells and whistles too.

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    Suzanne

    Please bring back Instant Tutoring.  I am a busy professional and have taken 69 lessons with Instant Tutoring in the last year and a half.  Since that time, I have only used iTalki with Instant Tutoring.

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    18ck

    Here's the other site I mentioned if anyone wants to try it https://www.lingq.com/?referral=colinlusk&utm_source=affiliate&utm_medium=referral-link&utm_campaign=colinlusk (referral link). 

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    Vanessa (Edited )

    WHAT THE HELL! I can't even contact Italki now through the "send us feedback" form. The "submit" button is disabled! 

     

    I am SOOOO ANGRY because I can't create new lessons, nor can I edit my current prices on the new site! I did an extra 30 minutes with a student today and normally I would have used the instant tutoring feature so I can get paid, but now I can't even create a "fake" lesson! 

     

    UPDATE: I was able to submit a ticket at support.italki.com but still... I can't believe I can't give them feedback through the new site!! 

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    Vanessa (Edited )

    WOW! Now one of my students says that they can't even book a single class with me!!!!!!!!!! 

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    Siyu

    I don't understand why italki is removing individual cancellation policies. Every teacher or tutor has their own style and level of tolerances to changes (as well as students) and that should be expected. Forcing everyone to follow the same policy will just make communications between students and teachers difficult and even more rigid than it already is. Instead of cancelling individual policies, italki should make them more visible than a little black question mark icon on the profile as often the reason for students not knowing the policy is that it's nearly visible! Teachers and tutors are using italki as a platform but are not employees of italki so I'm really unhappy to be forced to follow these rigid rules. Plus, to wait till the lesson's end? This is extremely disrespectful to teachers and tutors! I beleive we all have better things to do in life then waiting for a no-show student. Also bring back instant tutoring as there are both students and teachers who doesn't have every moment of their lives already planned that depends on it. If you have something better, introduce it before you take away the existing systems!
    The series of changes recently have been introduced abruptly and without consulting the opinion of users. (The messaging system oh god please). It's made my experience of using italki both as a tutor and a student extremely inconvenient and simply annoying. This whole new teacher site is just catastrophic on top of all the other changes we've been trying to adapt to already. If things are not getting better, I'd seriously consider quitting italki both as a tutor and as a student.

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    Federico (Edited )

    What's that thing of  "we are exploring ideas", regarding Instant Tutoring?, Its like Google shutting down their services while they think on a better way to do what they are already doing well. 

    We are loosing money, so you are. One of my "Instant" students just asked me to get the  Instant Tutoring lesson with me getting paid trough PayPal. I said no, but I had to offer a walkaround which I'm not sure will still work (I asked him to book a 45m lesson which I would then change the price, hoping I still can do so). 

    I'm not sure I can mention your rivals, but he said he would go with T.....M  where speaking "instantly" with other natives  is even for free.

    Do you have an IDEA of when instant tutoring will be back with that "better" version? 

    We all are loosing money.

     

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    Taylor Walker

    You guys need to bring the Instant Tutoring back. I'm sure I'm not the only one who enjoyed being able to chat with a native speaker for half an hour at a time whenever I was free and felt comfortable. I loved the flexibility, spontaneity and I loved how Instant Tutoring allowed me to practice with different voices, accents, insights and personalities. I'm pretty sure many tutors and teachers (who made themselves available for Instant Tutoring) will miss the opportunity to earn quick bucks just because they spoke a commonly studied language as their mother tongue. I don't have the patience or the qualification to teach mine but I wouldn't mind making some extra cash, either.

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    Erik J.

    *rolls eyes*
    *sigh*
    alright. i'm gonna be very blunt like how i am on yelp.

    you got rid of instant tutoring (dumb move) saying saying you're "exploring ideas" but what are they..? because it was already pretty damn flexible and convenient. bad idea.

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    cezary

    45 min lesson - great news ! Thank you italki.

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    Liza

    I'm very pleased that 45 min lessons are still an option.

    I don't understand removing of Instant Tutoring when it doesn't have an alternative yet.

    I find the new design less convenient:

    1) words and numbers are unnecessarily large, too "loud", it feels like they're shoved in my face. I have to scroll for too long to see the information I need while in the old version I could just open the main page and see all requests  and upcoming lessons. Which is what I usually need. Now I have to scroll past all the reminders to leave feedback. And they take up a lost of space. I wish those reminders were optional as I don't leave feedback after each lesson. Some students like to hear it from me at the end of the lesson, some (parents) like to get an e-mail detailing what we did (with children) etc., not everyone wants to get a hundredth "good job!" after each lesson, especially when they've been taking lessons for a while and have to press several buttons to read the message.

    I also have to scroll endlessly to get to the right message as I only see three or four contacts per page. (Which also doesn't work properly in the desktop version!)

    2) I liked having new requests separately from other notifications, too bad they're all dumped together now, I lose more time now.

    3) I don't have classes I take on my teacher's calendar. It's highly inconvenient! I'd like to have lessons I teach and lessons I take in one place and NOT switch between my profiles and compare the timing.

     

    I would really appreciate it if Italki made schedule managing easier. An option of taking a time slot off the schedule would be nice, and ability to add and take off time slots in a similar way we book lessons - by clicking on slots instead of having to manually enter all the intervals would be amazing. 

    I also wonder if you're going to fix notification system. It was a bad idea to mix it with messages and I have too many pointless notifications. I'd like to be able to turn some types of notifications off and never ever get them. I don't need a notification every time I accept a request or I leave feedback, I'm well aware of my own actions, and all those notifications are just spam, clutter that makes it harder for me to find messagies. 

    What about the comminity? Are we still going to have articles, questions and discussions or is all of it going away? 

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    Priscilla

    It's a shame that iTalki is getting rid of instant tutoring. I hope that's reconsidered. 

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    Marko

    Why would you remove instant tutoring? That makes no sense!

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    Charles

    "IF IT 'AIN'T BROKE, DON'T FIX IT!"

    Since I started teaching on the italki in 2014, I've clocked up more than 5000 lessons and I LOVE the platform.

    However, every time italki makes an update, it sends a shiver down my spine because it always reduces usability instead of improving it. Why is this? I suggest you contact a sample of teachers and students for feedback on how it could affect their usability BEFORE rolling out new changes that may be potentially detrimental.

    I am relieved that you decided to keep 45 minute lessons (and 90 minutes) as these are very popular with my students and jumping from 30 minutes to 1 hour can be a big leap for many. 45 minutes is that bridge.

    Unfortunately, there are still a number of issues with recent updates:

    1. Messaging - Messages used to mean messages from students. Now, messages means annoying notifications diluting and hiding real messages. Please don't mix these together. Reversing this would be a great step forward in usability and ensuring that student's messages get read and not drowned out.

    2. The new teacher calendar on the beta teaching site - Why have you shrunk the display of the student's names that they are now harder to read, and more importantly, not fully displayed? Annoyingly, students that register on their phones are not forced to write an ID name (I wish you would address this so as to avoid confusion), so they just get lumped with MOBILE XXXX. If that didn't make things hard enough when trying to figure out who is who, on the new calendar, all that is displayed is mobil... For students who have filled out an actual ID name, all I see is their first name and not the surname which could cause mix-ups with students who have the same first name (very common!). I am now forced to make an extra click every time I want to check who I am teaching. Unnecessary extra clicks are a step backwards, not forwards. Time is money.

    3. I know the teacher site is just in the beta stage, but I thought it would be useful for you to know (if you don't already) that the display page takes around 40 seconds before it shows anything other than the title bar at the top.

    4. A separate site just for teachers is inconvenient (2 sites instead of 1). I'm sure you have your reasons why you have rolled this out. It would be appreciated and better received if we got an explanation as to why.

    I have no idea if you will consider these criticisms as criticisms are often not well received, but they are directed purely from personal experience in the hopes of IMPROVING USABILITY!!!

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    Matthew

    I'm very disappointed to hear that Instant Tutoring will be removed. That's how I find new teachers and explore new languages. Please reconsider.

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    Accent Coach Melinda

    Please remove the gray entries to our calendars that show cancelled classes, we don't need or want to see these on our calendars, because they have been *cancelled*. Also please put ALL lessons in the same calendar, whether it is a class given as a teacher, or taken as a student.  It's too inconvenient to have our daily schedules in two places.

    My messages don't display at all in Safari, but do in Chrome.  

    The loss of the Community sections and Instant Tutoring severely compromise italki's uniqueness in the already crowded language learning segment.  Why get rid of what gives you your core identity and what makes you stand out in the crowd? Instant Tutoring is such a cool and unique feature!

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    sophia entzminger

    People please leave this site, there are other language learning sites. This site makes money off of us, WE keep this site going. If they dont respect us, then we can leave with our money!!! !I AM , GOODBYE. They are making too many changes, esp Instant Tutoring. 

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    Valerio Viale

    Hi guys, anyone has ever tried verbling? they don't have instant tutoring but it is possible to book a lessons 12 hours in advance, not a full solution but still worth an attempt. Lot less teachers and never tried, anyway. Do you know any alternative with professional teachers?

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    Anna D

    @Valerio I had a look at verbling, but it seems you can only teach one language there, which is really inconvenient for me. I asked there support, waiting for a reply. Thanks for the tip, 12 hrs is not ideal but is already something. 

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    Valerio Viale (Edited )

    I was navigating the beta, omg it is horrible. And have you tried it on mobile? with those tiles out of the windows and those sliders, so instead of having info there you have to slide @__@ what is going on here? are UX designers working for competition? Even if I could bear the instant tutoring wipe off I would never accept that...bad interface. If you click on user's icon on top right the menu is partly out of the page. That's not responsive design. I feel like in a bad dream. Why? Why for c****t s**e?? If is not broken, don't fixe it! I say it again, if is not broken don't fix it. To italki developers and management (mainly to managers, I know developers are doing amazing job and I support them) I suggest:
    1) to bring all back as it was on the 1st of April.
    2) to take a week off
    3) to make that training:

    https://www.coursera.org/learn/responsivedesign

    4) to read users' feedback (yes read users' feedback, all of them).
    I know I am heavy but I am doing it to literally save Italki.

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    Valerio Viale

    @Anna Kor. Yes it's a big flaw if they allows you only to teach one language. I still think it's more likely to fix italki but we'll see how competition adapt ;-)

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    18ck

    @anna / @valerio have you tried lingq? I joined recently and it seems good, although I'm a student & not sure how it looks to tutors https://www.lingq.com/?referral=colinlusk&utm_source=affiliate&utm_medium=referral-link&utm_campaign=colinlusk

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    Mohsen

    Instant tutoring was a good idea, I wonder why you deleted!

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    Michele The Euroglot

    @18ck

    I was a tutor at LingQ.com for five years before starting teaching at italki. The thing is that LingQ was not meant as a way to earn money: conversations were 15-minutes long and cost 500 credits, that is the equivalent of 5 USD. You could only cash out when you reached 10,000 credits, i.e. 100 dollars, but you were encouraged to reinvest your credits in your learning activities. I don't know if anything has changed in the last years, but it often took me three months to reach the 10,000-credit threshold (and this even if I was tutoring multiple languages, correcting texts and providing learning material: all these activities give you credits), that is I earned about 30 dollars a month. There was no instant tutoring, but it was possible to create 60-minute group conversations with a tutor and up to 4 learners.

    I don't know what has changed at LingQ in the last years, but I will have a look at it again...

    I am very sad and disappointed because I could earn much more here than at LingQ, but I am very pessimistic about the future now. Quite a few of my lessons were Instant Tutoring sessions with intermediate or advanced learners who have a busy life and seized the chance to practise a language. I enjoyed them very much and they brought me extra money. You are making everybody poorer, and I really don't see how this can be an "improvement"!

     

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    Michele The Euroglot

    I've just seen that LingQ has changed a lot for tutors. It looks much similar to italki now: tutors can set their own hourly prices (although only one price even if you tutor several languages). I have just written them to ask how cashing out works now. However, managing the calendar is as difficult as it is at italki: it's impossible to remove a 15- or 30-minute slot from a full working day without previously deleting the full day. :/

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    Valerio Viale

    @Michele The Euroglot . We are on the same page. I gave a look to LingQ and to be totally honest I am not going to drop a dime on it. Very very confusing interface. Teachers don't have a video presentation or they have the account of someone else (WTF???). Credit system with points (WTF x 2 ???) Tons of broken links and oh boys I have been there for 5 minutes. And they have not instant tutoring so even if we are bitter now is still a lot better Italki.  I am sure that LingQ has a market but if I have to switch from here I want true improvement.

    By the way I'm not going anywhere, best teachers (<3) are there and still is best website for language learning even with the horrible upgrade.

    Has anyone got a serious answer from THEM ?

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    Matt 马修 (Edited )

    This update is a big regression. Why remove instant tutoring? Why on our teacher profiles display the cheapest 30 minute class price instead of the standard 60 minute class price?

    What happened to community access, we shouldn't have to switch back to our student profile in order to access it.

    The most pressing issue for me is how do I manually adjust class prices after they have been booked like before?

    I've seen it already said in this thread, but really why fix what isn't broken?

    I enjoy teaching on italki, but it seems we've just lost a lot of features with no explanation why.

     

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