First of all,I hope you guys can take my critiques without being offended,this is only my personal opinion (and of some friend). Also this is not a Feature Request,but since there is no area more "on topic" that this under "Feedback & Support" area, I'm forced to post it here,but this is only Feedback.
So,currently I'm very disappointed with the site,I've been slightly disappointed in the past but now it got worse. I used your site for something like 2 years I think,I've listen to 302 lessons and completed "Newbie Season 1-2-3", "Absolute Beginner 1-2","Beginner 4-5-6", "Lower Intermediate 5-6" and I'm currently listening to "Intermediate 1 - lesson 40".
During this whole time I was always annoyed by the fact that inside the .pdf you guys would list the words under "VOCABULARY" in a random order,so while Naomi or someone else would be reading it I'm wasting time looking for the word inside that list,instead of focusing on its meaning or memorizing it and when I finally found it you guys would be already reading another word,confusing me in unspeakable ways or forcing me to listen again the whole thing. Same goes for the example sentences,sometimes I would be lucky enough to find the example sentence in the .pdf,some other time I would be focusing on looking for it in the pdf while the lesson goes on...so my point here is,would it be so difficult to match the order of the things that apper inside the .pdf with the order they appear in the lesson?! Is like if in a classroom the teacher is doing his/her lesson while I'm trying to find on the book the page with the grammar point she's talking about,clearly I couldn't pay attention to he/her the whole time. Second,and this is probably the thing that bother me the most,I come here to learn the grammar but to say it bluntly in each lesson there is too much "fooling around" (forgive me but I can't find any other way to express it in english,I'm Italian by the way) compared to the grammar it gives, so basically the lesson would be full of jokes and laughs for like 12 minutes and then the main grammar point of the lesson compressed in the last minute...this is totally wrong,should be 1 minute of laughs and 12 minutes of the important grammar point... Third,and actually is this the thing that bothered me the most,and which is: when I stepped into "Intermediate Season 1" basically Peter and the others expects me to magically understand japanese out of the blue,like if since I clicked "Intermediate" button now I can talk japanese in a way I couldn't during the "Lower Intermediate". Basically the "Intermediate Season 1" stops giving the translations of the random stuff said by Peter an the others,so while keeping the parts I didn't liked (excessive fooling around, laughing and joking) now I don't even get to understand it! So I'm basically paying to stare at my screen while not learning anything...can you see how this could bother me or how could it bother anyone else? Honestly this just felt like a lazy excuse to stop providing translation and cutting away some work,because you guys could at least put that parts into the pdf only,so people who had problems understanding it could go to read the kanji version or translated version inside the pdf. And this situation is the same during this 40 lessons I've followed in the "Intermediate Season",is like the whole series did steps back instead of moving forward,and I guess would only get worse if I where to try moving to a more advanced season. Honestly now I feel like you guys are holding me down and if someone where to ask me to rate the site I would give 6/10,the only reason for me still sticking around is that there is no competition that I know about,and probably the same goes for my friends...
Actually there could be a place,check this channel: www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKmf_W-im3c
If they where to switch to a paid method like jpod101 I would be immediately switching boat for sure,so...my point here is...guys please get your act together,you can do bether than this.
So again,this is only my personal feeling about the site,hope noone got offended by it since the point was not to offend you but to make you aware about how someone is honestly perceiving your work.
Hi, I wanted to reply to the first post because I love this site! I've been studying through Jpod 101 for 3 years. I started with beginner season 1, and have worked my way through every lesson up to upper intermediate season 1. When I started I could barely do my jikoshoukai and now I can hold basic conversations.
I don't agree with marcusaseth6443's first two criticisms - I don't read the lesson notes while I'm listening, as I do all my listening while driving to and from work, so I don't notice if the order of the vocab is different to the PDFs, and I like the banter / joking in the lessons.
However, I did find the same thing with the level of difficulty of the intermediate lessons - having so much explanation in Japanese is quite a step up. But, the intermediate series is from 2007, when Jpod 101 was pretty new, and there is a big difference between these early lessons and the ones made more recently, which are much more polished. So I hope that in the future Jpod 101 will make some more 'intermediate' level lessons to help bridge the gap from upper beginner / lower intermediate, where there is still quite a lot of English, to the 'upper intermediate' level where people are ready to have most of the lesson in Japanese.
In the meantime, because I found that 'upper intermediate season 1' was a bit difficult, I'm going back over all the intermediate lessons for revision. I'm finding them easier to understand the second time around, and I'm understanding more of the Japanese banter during lessons. Hopefully when I get back to the upper intermediate lessons they won't feel so hard.
marcusaseth6443 - がんばってください！
Jpod 101 staff - keep up the good work! ありがとうございます！
Second,and this is probably the thing that bother me the most,I come here to learn the grammar but to say it bluntly in each lesson there is too much "fooling around" (forgive me but I can't find any other way to express it in english,I'm Italian by the way) compared to the grammar it gives, so basically the lesson would be full of jokes and laughs for like 12 minutes and then the main grammar point of the lesson compressed in the last minute...this is totally wrong,should be 1 minute of laughs and 12 minutes of the important grammar point...
I think this is a selling point for some people who need to laughs to keep motivated and entertained. That said, I agree that it can be a balancing act. Sometimes the key points get lost in the chuckles. But thankfully, in my experience, those occasions have been fairly rare. I am still only a 6 month absolute beginner though. So maybe I will relate to your feedback more as I progress into the upper levels. Although I suspect I wont.
Have you used the feeds yet? I've downloaded the dialogues only for Newbie Season 1-2-3 and Absolute Beginner 1-2 to an app on my Galaxy tab called Podcast Republic. I'm able to listen to them all sequentially. It's helping my listening comprehension (I think anyway ). Anyway, given all the ground you've covered, maybe that might be a good next step.
Daniel,no idea what are you referring to with the word "feeds",anyway in my opinion the problem is more in keeping around the Intermediate Season 1,which since is very old (2007) is not polished at all and creates a lot of frustration. In my opinion should just be removed from the site,or a big red warning against using it.
I'll take your word for it, since I am nowhere close to that stage yet.
Just to clarify about feeds, if you have a premium account, you can do the following to use it:
Select Study ToolsSelect My FeedUnder the Step #1 heading, select one or more seasons you want to review dialog for.Under the Step #2 heading, select Dialog Track.Under the Step #3 heading (you have to scroll down), enter a unique name for the feed. For example, marcus. Note: As soon as you type in a name, links get generated in the For Itunes and For other podcast agregators fields.Copy and paste the feed links to either an Itunes ready device or some other agregattor that has authentication enabled. You will need to enter in your login information from JPOD101. The aggregator will then download every dialog for the entire season, or group of seasons, and you can review them in a continuous flow, as many times as you want. I have found this a good way to test and increase my listening comprehension. Where I am having difficulties, I know I need to go over the lesson matterial again.
Anyway, good luck on your learning. Cheers, Daniel