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Should Glen close his forums?   General Travel Discussion

Started 10/29/17 by Glen (GEAATL); 718 views.

From: Glen (GEAATL)


As some of you know (thanks to the several regulars who noticed ), my kidney stones kept me pretty much away from a keyboard for most of a week.  It isn't likely fatal, but it hurts (a lot).  My absence howver also was amplified by the demise of Delphi.  2.5 years ago, when I was really ill, probably ten times as many people noticed my absence and checked on me.  In those days my 7 forums would generate 100+ posts a day, and 30-50 daily or semi-daily regulars.  People posted a lot.  Today 5 of my 7 forums average 5 or less.  A week in law would have had 350  posts in a slow week - maybe 700 in a busy news week (This week we had 16).  In Southern, several people who have posted a recipe and maybe a dozen would have played a game (this week: 0 and 2 respectively). Weight watchers would have had several recipes and tips discussed (and so on).

In the last week we have heard that FEMA/Trump covered up Maria deaths (over 100 cremations in funeral homes were not logged) and FEMA and Trump hired a Montana company, a Trump supporter with TWO employees, to restore power in Puerto Rico, which is this week suffering a deadly plague in the water,   Trump promised to release ALL the Kennedy papers as required by law on Twitter, and 24 hours later covered most of them up, illegally.  A federal judge pretty much let Trump kill Obamacare by throw in out a suit to revive subsidies.  Trump's coverup of a secret mismanaged war in Niger goes on.   He declares war on opioids, but refuses to spend any money or announce any programs.  Two new tropical storms hit land, one aimed for Florida.  And most of you sit silent and do not care and that is WHY we have a problem.

And the missing recipes, games, travel photos, etc, and  lack of chatter here tell me I am talking to a wall (my apologies to the ten or so on Delphi who DO care, do post, do ask, do miss people, etc.

Is it worth it for me to spend an hour, or hours a day, to talk to the wind?  Or am I wasting time?  Since 1994 I never asked that question.  Now I do.   I am leaning towards doing what many on Delphi have done already - close my forums.  But making a decision this big about a true passion, while in pain, resting and on drugs, is the wrong time.  I will watch this week - not just in law where a few people (thanks Jeri, Ann, DGI and Whitemare) jumped in, but in six forums where almost no one did.  I'll post this same post in all my forums.   I'll read the answers.  But I'll also look at actions.   Did anyone take 2 minutes and play a game or share a recipe in SS?   Did anyone share a vacation tip in the travel forum?  Did anyone talk a medical or weight loss issue?  Did anyone ask about our other missing members and we have several missing/AWOL right now?

Is there some vestige of community, caring, passion, etc?  I may do a few posts.  I may rest.  But I'll look in, and what I see will be your vote and voice.  I will take it seriously.  Share rhis post with absent forum members in email.  Whether they are ok and care matters too.

I'm tired and hurting toni
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In reply toRe: msg 1

From: Glen (GEAATL)


related discussion/promo:

Longtime host GEAATL discusses closing his 7 forums. Opinions and comments are solicited.
In reply toRe: msg 1

From: Glen (GEAATL)


Still pondering, but one idea that was poison to me may make sense.  Closing any of my forums is like saying you have to kill one child to help another.  But silence also speaks volumes.  While I don't have a final decision for any forums, I note thus far that (and I am reading this broadly, so if someone comments in one forum but is active in another of mine or mentions it I count it as a comment there), ZERO people have commented in my Weight Loss and, MidAtlantic forums, and but one regular from the travel forum.  My law and southern forums have drawn many responses and I appreciate them all.   The response in my medical, memorial, what's happening and travel forums has been very minimal.

OTOH, closing most but not all still doesn't address what happens when I need a break for health or other reasons.  Two of the forums we're discussing are 33 years old.  A couple more are measured in decades.  I don't have to decide in a day.

But if anyone does value Weight Loss, Travel, Memorial, Medical and Atlantic forums now is definitely the time to tell me.  If no one cares, an obvious decision on those gets easy - close them.  And please keep talking about the oldest "babies" - law and southern states.   If enough people are willing to be active and help, that also gives me more options.

Thinking out loud here folks - not upset with anyone and VERY appreciative of some very thoughtful comments the past few days/...

(will cross post this in all my forums)

I've enjoyed your forums. The ones I've visited are always well maintained and the discussions prove interesting. Mainly stick with here and Southern States. Sometimes check out the Legal/Law forum.

Please know that prayers have been lifted regarding your health, your many struggles & all the many hurdles you've somehow managed to recover from. I do check on you.) Personally I would miss your fora. But only you know how much you're able to handle these days. All of Delphi has been running slow and we've lost way more members this past year.

I'm hoping your health improves and wishing you the best with your decision.

Night time blessings ~ 

I love the pictures posted here, a lot I really wish I could visit.

Plus you post very interesting items, I'm a better looker then poster, I admit I'm guilty of that


From: Glen (GEAATL)


 I have re-read most of the comments across my forums and here's the thought process...

  • ZERO people have asked me to keep Atlantic States, Weight Loss and the Medical Forums open.  One or two spoke kindly of the Travel forum.  Based on that lack of interest, absent any other comments, and I'll look again this weekend, those 4 forums should be closed as no one seems to be worried about them.
  • The Memorial forum presents an interesting question.  No other forum like it exists (the sole other forum that has attempted what it does is quiet, sterile and un-useful.   I may want to explore keeping it open as I think many have noted its obvious value.
  • Southern States is tough.  There are essentially about 4 or 5 regulars doing a handful of posts.  They clearly like the forum.   But absent threads I start, almost nothing new or interesting gets posted.   It is hard to justify keeping it unless there will be more original content.  The forum goes almost completely quiet if I leave for a few days and that says a lot.  So I am torn 50-50 on whether it should stay or go.
  • I really don't know what to do with Personal Law.   A small but loyal group of about 10-15 people regularly visits and about half post.   But when I go for more than a few days, it gets very quiet.  Obviously my contribution is appreciated there, but again the overall interest level is tiny compared with just a few years ago.  It is a lot of work to do it well.   I honestly am torn on this one mostly because of the quiet when I am not there.  I really need to look at it more and think as to whether I'm happy with where it is at today, and comfortable with being able to leave it alone when I need to.
  • In other words, there are three forums that have some arguments to keep open and four where unless I'm wrong, almost no one cares.  That may be where the axe should fall.  I won't have much time here the next few days, so let me see how things go and see if the close 4 keep open 3 is an answer, or if I need to keep less than 3.

As you stated you'll have to weed out which you'd prefer to keep. I'm surprised with Personal Law. Used to have lots of visitors and full of interesting legal topics. I'm partial to Southern States and this one. When visiting your forums, every one of them............... All have interesting topics and you've put soooooooooooo much time into them over the years... *All have been policed well over the years and all well maintained* 

Delphi has lost so many members over the year. However, when it's up and working I think it the very best site to be part of. Maybe cut back some as I realize your state of health has robbed so much from you and you need to take care of yourself and not have heavy thoughts of these matters. What ever you decide I know it will be wise and members left will follow.

Wishing you peace of mind & hoping all goes well.


From: Cstar1


Hi Glen -

I hope that you'll consider just mothballing your forums rather than closing them. Put them on read only. Or, if you'd like, turn the oldest ones over to Delphi or to new hosts, so they can live on. 

Or, try switching some to Zeta, give them a new look, and ask for help from your visitors in running them. I would take this forum back if you are amenable. 

I don't think anyone wants to see you close your forums, but we do all understand the health issues that are taking precedence in your life these days. We all wish you the best. 

In reply toRe: msg 6

From: Glen (GEAATL)




I've made final decisions and will close most of my forums (close - not read only - I don't want to leave dead shells Delphi staff might revive without me).   It became an easy choice for the Weight Loss, Atlantic, Medical and What's Happening forums.   In the first three of those not a single member cared enough to say anything.  Those 4 all close. (One person was the only voice in What's Happening).

The Travel forum will also close.  While three or four people mentioned liking it, for many months no one has posted any travel experiences or tips.  And over the past couple years, only about a half dozen people ever did, many of whom have not been there in many months.  It was a good idea that members abandoned.

Southern States was a toughie.  It's my oldest forum.  But only 5 or 6 people have done a post in months, and almost all of those were a handful of word games.  The exchange of recipes, posts, local information, events and so on is simply gone.  That doesn't justify the effort as there is really no serious content.  So it's time to shutter it.  I know those still there will be sad, but too  many people have left to sustain it, and it is no longer the interactive place it once was.

The Law and Memorial forums do have some value.  I'd like to keep them open.  The key will be volunteers.  If I am confident that several members will help post, moderate the forums, etc in my absence, I think keeping those open makes sense.   Law remains reasonably active and the Memorial forum has a lot of value. 

I know a few people, especially with Southern States, will be disappointed.  But I have no help there staff wise and the members themselves really made the decision, with the huge decline in activity there compared with a year ago.  Because closing forums takes time, and to let folks say goodbyes, I'll likely do the final closings late this year - date TBA.   The law and memorial staying open are tentative - I have one more surgery and two big work projects in the next 30 days, so I'll get a good look at whether those forums do run okay when I miss time.


From: Glen (GEAATL)


Because I drafted the post above before yours and then had an internet outtage, I didn't see your last post before mine posted.   Since in this forum, which you started, you have offered to take it back (I wish others had volunteered in other forums as I asked possible candidates for several), I'd be fine with transferring this one back to you (I'll likely time it on the closing date for the quiet forums that didn't make it).  I am going to keep the two forums that have enough activity to justify their existence.  While seeing any forum close is sad, I looked hard in deciding at visitor lists, post counts by members, etc, both recent and older.   And to be honest two quality active forums are better than a bunch that really are solely blogs for my posts.  As you might imagine, I started thinking about all this way back in the summer of 2015, and explored a lot of potential volunteers.   A piece of me is obviously sad - but I really am good with this.  I'm still going to need help to keep two going, but I am hoping I'll find that.