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Stepping down (again, finally?)

Thread title: Stepping down (again, finally?)
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06-08-2011, 06:21 PM
#1
Salathe is offline Salathe
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  Old  Stepping down (again, finally?)

Hi guys,

This is just a note to let you all know that I have come to the decision to no longer spend any involvement in the daily running (what little happens) of the forums. Maintaining the status-quo (i.e. just doing day-to-day moderation) is not something I planned to do when coming back, nor do I want to be part of a team apparently happy to do only that: to maintain an even keel. I will also be cutting back on involvement in discussions (what little happens).

The main reasons are twofold.
  1. I no longer enjoy being here
  2. I have no reason to believe that will change

To say a little on each point (skip over here if don't have time to read), here goes.

I no longer enjoy being here because, I feel, the sense of community is so weak. It feels like people are just hanging around for hanging around's sake. That is not what I want this place to be. For the designers, there is nothing to talk about. For the coders, ditto. For the "SEO" experts, writers, website flippers, blah, blah there is just no discussion any more. No sense of dissemination of knowledge, no sense of figure things out between us. No insights from industry professionals, or helping hands for those getting started. Heck, even the banter (usually the background noise of any forum) is almost entirely missing. It is not a pleasure to sign in and trawl through the new posts, what I find is most of the time disappointing. Even when there is something to talk about, the current practice is to give your two cents (or far less!) and wander away somewhere else.

Next, and this upsets me more than anything, I have no reason to believe anything will change. Artashes, I know that you are going to take this personally and I mean the following as only my observation and interpretation. When you prove me wrong, I will gladly eat my words. In the mean time, we have been under new ownership, with a great staff team, for well over a year. We have had a huge list of improvements in the pipeline since even before then. Precious little of any of that has come to through to fruition, and even the things that are being "actively" worked on show little sign of progress. I must take responsibility for the lack of progress, as I hope you all will too. With the current team of guys we have, and I am beyond grateful for everything that everyone has been putting in, I just don't see the site becoming even a shadow of Artashes', and our, grand plan. The more worrying point, and the tipping point for this whole message, is that I don't see that ever changing. The catalyst for change just is not present. I wish it were.

So what happens now? Well, I expect Artashes to pick his jaw up off of the floor (I haven't spoken about this with him prior to writing this post) and then I have no idea. We'll see, I suppose.

Regards,
Peter

06-08-2011, 06:54 PM
#2
JacktheFlipper is offline JacktheFlipper
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  Old

The sad thing is I also agree with you! When I first joined I was almost in awe at how brilliant the forum was, and possibly a little scared to post as the community seemed so strong. Yet now the only reason I log on from time to time is either because I am bored and have time to spare or because I got an email about a PM.

Whose the owner of the forum? I've run quite a few forums in my time that have grown to be quite big, and i'd be interested in stepping in and getting this site back to where it should be. I understand your points Salathe that you don't think things will ever change, but is that because you've tried and see no change in site? Possibly a fresh brain that hasn't been involved with the running of the site could come in and boost it?

06-08-2011, 07:34 PM
#3
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  Old

Hi Peter,

I am a surprised by the decision, but I am definitely not taking it personally. I know how to take the positives out of criticism, and that's exactly what I will do. I will take it as a learning experience and try to improve my game. There is really nothing else that I can do except than to try harder.

I am sorry you are not enjoying the community as you did before and I hope that you change your mind (or I prove you wrong - either way I'll be happy) as we move forward with the plans we set early on (yeap, the same ones we are still working on).

It has certainly been a pleasure working with you, even though for such a brief period of time. And thank you!

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High5 (09-06-2011), nomatch (06-11-2011)
06-08-2011, 08:57 PM
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The_Return is offline The_Return
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  Old

I too wish this place had more active members. The main reason for most of the users joining was the market place. Now that it has slowed down their isn't much for users to do. I suggest maybe doing tutorials like smashing magazine to attract new people or re-do the market place.

06-08-2011, 11:19 PM
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  Old

Originally Posted by The_Return View Post
The main reason for most of the users joining was the market place. Now that it has slowed down their isn't much for users to do. I suggest [...] to re-do the market place.

You are welcome to participate in the process.

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06-10-2011, 03:29 AM
#6
Bryan Le is offline Bryan Le
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  Old

A member since 2004 leaves. Really sad to see you go.

For all the reasons you've said before, it's why I left years ago. Ownership after ownership has really killed this place.

06-10-2011, 03:45 AM
#7
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Bryan, if we were to be so lucky to get a little of your vision and direction with some of the ideas/concepts and development work, perhaps it would make a huge impact and, consequently, a big difference.

I would love to pick up your brain on a couple of specific ideas we are struggling with. Are you game for some chat sessions?

06-11-2011, 04:58 AM
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  Old

Originally Posted by Artashes View Post
Hi Peter,

I am a surprised by the decision, but I am definitely not taking it personally. I know how to take the positives out of criticism, and that's exactly what I will do. I will take it as a learning experience and try to improve my game. There is really nothing else that I can do except than to try harder.

I am sorry you are not enjoying the community as you did before and I hope that you change your mind (or I prove you wrong - either way I'll be happy) as we move forward with the plans we set early on (yeap, the same ones we are still working on).

It has certainly been a pleasure working with you, even though for such a brief period of time. And thank you!
Artashes,

I really believe you have the right attitude. Although, I agree that things may have been slow so far, you're definitely moving in the right direction. It seems like you guys are a very tough crowd. A LOT of complaining and criticism - and not much help.

At the end of the day, members come and go, and that is not going to break this place. TFL still gets decent traffic (guesstimating) and I think that needs to be converted properly. Perhaps have a more detailed look at the analytics and see what these visitors are visiting for - tailor the website to these guys.

Your running a neat competition and aiming high with it. You're getting a whole new skin developed - providing plenty of new functions to the website and I really hope it works out for you.

Peter, I think it is quite unfair to make a post like this. You're a popular member of the forum, but why - oh why - are people so pessimistic! All this post will achieve is a couple of sobs and can only be detrimental to members' attitudes. Artashes has obviously invested quite heavily into this web property - and for you to burn that - and abuse your position of power - is wrong. By all means you're entitled to your own opinions - but seriously - is it your place to put Artashes down like this in front of the rest of the community?

What this place needs is a change in attitude of its members and a better targeting and understanding of what the MAJORITY of visitors want. The new skin Chris has done may or may not achieve that, something needs to change. Sure. But give the guy a chance to implement his vision without obstacle after obstacle - you're just making it harder for him!

Best of luck Artashes and Bye bye Peter.

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06-11-2011, 06:37 AM
#9
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  Old

nomatch, I appreciate such a nice message, especially coming from a member who has been at TF for such a long time. You have certainly made my month (not even a day)! So it'll definitely keep the motivation high and fuel the desire to keep trucking forward.

As you mentioned, Peter has the right to his opinion, as do you, and everyone else. I don't think he has stated something that is shocking. Fact of the matter is that he is not alone to think and feel that way about the current state of the forum. But Peter has also given his best effort since re-joining the team and he has done some very honest and fair work while he was a part of staff. Everyone knows that. Certainly it hurts me to see older members being disappointed and seeing them voice it publicly, but that is healthy part of the process that we have to go through. It would be great to have more support and more involvement by members, but it is what it is. If anything, it serves as another kick in the butt and reminds me to work harder and with better focus. A good sign is that I still receive PMs from members (both old and young) willing to step in and help.

We currently have outlined 5 things/projects which we are focusing on, some of them will be visible changes, some will be introduced behind the scenes, but all are designed to improve the quality of the community in the long run. All of these tasks are also independent events, which means we can have different groups of people working on all 5 tasks simultaneously, so the next few weeks should be interesting.

06-11-2011, 02:34 PM
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  Old

Originally Posted by nomatch View Post
Peter, I think it is quite unfair to make a post like this. You're a popular member of the forum, but why - oh why - are people so pessimistic!
I have been optimistic about this place for many years, through times far worse than they are currently. I have had the privilege of seeing things from a community point of view and from behind the curtain, through the good and the bad. If you feel my post was pessimistic, that's entirely for you to read into it how you will; it is my opinion and unfortunately yes I don't believe in the process becoming any better. I would be delighted to be proved wrong!

Originally Posted by nomatch View Post
All this post will achieve is a couple of sobs and can only be detrimental to members' attitudes. Artashes has obviously invested quite heavily into this web property - and for you to burn that - and abuse your position of power - is wrong. By all means you're entitled to your own opinions - but seriously - is it your place to put Artashes down like this in front of the rest of the community?
So he has invested lots of time, and some money, into the property; that is great. What is to show of it?.. I am still, I believe, absolutely entitled to say that I feel far, far more work needs to be done (that's not a problem) and to believe it won't get done (that is a problem). Abusing my power, oh please. Is it my place to put Artashes down in public, absolutely! This community deserves all the best, and it isn't being given that. The same comes from my own position on staff, since coming back I was a part-time moderator; Artashes made no effort to involve me in the big plans, the few there are, nor to manage the staff team to do anything more than keep clicking the moderation buttons (and even struggled to do that time and time again). Without being given the opportunities that the staff (maybe not the current staff members) need to be given to really push this place forward, nothing gets done. This is, ultimately, entirely Artashes' responsibility as the owner of the property.

Originally Posted by nomatch View Post
What this place needs is a change in attitude of its members
I absolutely, wholeheartedly, 100% disagree. The fact that the majority of active members have been here for years, and still come here to post (or if they don't post much, still come around to see what's going on!) is testament to the eternal faith and strength in the (former) community. If anything, I would say that the overwhelming attitude of the members, at least the ones that take any time to voices themselves, is one of support. Change of attitude? No thanks!


Originally Posted by nomatch View Post
and a better targeting and understanding of what the MAJORITY of visitors want. The new skin Chris has done may or may not achieve that, something needs to change. Sure. But give the guy a chance to implement his vision without obstacle after obstacle - you're just making it harder for him!
Artashes has had an enormous length of time and support since he got on board. You may see obstacle after obstacle, I see opportunity after opportunity -- being wasted. Whether the community sees it (hopefully they do) or not, things need to change (and I'm not talking about a new forum skin). Maybe, the gentle kick in the butt from a long-term, extremely supportive, member of the community can prove a reality check. If it spurs changes, so much the better.

Originally Posted by nomatch View Post
Best of luck Artashes and Bye bye Peter.
I'll still be around from time to time so more like, "see you later."

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