I am pleased to introduce this new E-I feature today.
Firstly, some escorts use their own reference systems. For example they may ask you to tell them the name of another escort you have seen so they can call that escort and check you saw her and she found you ok. This new E-I references system is not to be confused with any individual reference system that any individual lady may be using for her own safety. This is something new and different and unique to this community.
The new E-I reference system enables users to give each other references. We are asking users, if you have met another user in real life and are happy to recommend them, give them a reference. And don't give a reference to another user unless you have met them in real life and are happy to recommend them!
A reference is just a reference. It is not a review, there is no option to leave any personal comment.
All references are good references. You can't give a bad reference. If you've met someone and you do not wish to recommend them, don't give them a reference.
Nobody can opt in or out of the reference system.
Permissions depend on your usergroup. You may or may not be able to give/receive references.
There are 2 types of references:
Escort References, which can given by escorts, and Client References, which can be given by clients.
Only persons in the usergroups Escort Advertisers, Escort (Non Advertisers) and Established Escorts can give escort references. These are of course the users we believe are escorts. They are persons paying to advertise on E-I as escorts, with the exception of the Escort (Non Advertisers) who are not current paying customers but E-I staff have manually approved them joining an escort usergroup as we believe they are genuine escorts.
Only persons in the usergroup Established Clients can give client references. To be in this usergroup you must have more than 269 posts on E-I. We are not allowing other users to give client references, as if all you had to do to give a client reference was register an account here, a client reference would have little value as messers could easily register multiple accounts here to give references.
Each user can only give each other user 1 reference. No user can give another user multiple references. If a user gives a reference and then wants to withdraw it, it can be deleted.
Not all users can receive references.
Persons in the usergroups - Registered Users, Escort (Non Advertisers), Escort Advertisers, Established Escorts, Established Members - can receive escort references from escorts.
Persons in the usergroups - Registered Users, Escort (Non Advertisers), Escort Advertisers, Established Escorts, Established Members - can receive client references from clients.
Staff and moderator / site helper usergroups are all exempt from giving or receiving references, as this system is only about clients and escorts recommending each other.
You can see who has given you references, but you cannot see this info on other people's profiles. If Bob looks at his own profile, he can see who has given himself references, but if Bob goes and looks at Bill's profile, he can only see how many references Bill has, he cannot see the names of the other users who have given Bill a reference.
This is for everybody's privacy. Although you may say "But I want to see who gave the references to another user and then decide if I trust the reference givers!", we feel giving this info would comprimise people's privacy. Bill may well not wish anyone to know which escorts he has seen and we think that should be his own business unless he wishes to disclose it by posting reviews of the escorts or talking about it on threads.
The same applies with escorts. Escort claire may be friends with escorts liz, sue and carol and have given those 3 escorts references, but she doesn't necessarily want the world to know she is friends with those 3 escorts.
We think, for privacy, users shouldn't be able to see who has given other users the references they have. Yes it would be nice sometimes to see who had given references to another user you are checking out, but to allow this would comprimise people's privacy.
Today we are just launching this feature. If you click on anybody's profile now, you will see a references tab. In the future we hope to start using this data in various different ways.
Probably the first way we will be using it is to improve security of the private forums for escorts. I'm not going to discuss that here in detail as it is a private escort issue, but we have had some problems with pimps and other unsavoury types getting into the private escort forums. It is very hard for us to tell the difference between a genuine escort and a pimp who has taken out an ad or adverts with us and is now logging in as that/those escort(s). We are now going to be asking escorts to give other escorts they know references and Established Clients too, if you've met an escort and she was genuine, give her a reference. We hope this references data will help us keep the private escort forums more secure, as we can bring in new rules to make security tighter, for example, no access to the following private forums until you have at least 3 references.
It may also make sense to tie this data in with the reviews system at some point.
So, please check out this new feature. Leave some references if you are able to and you have met some other users in real life that you would be happy to recommend. Let us know of course if you find any bugs!