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Thread: Forum Declines?

  1. #1
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Jul 2003
    United Kingdom: Bridlington

    Forum Declines?

    I guess that we have all noticed over the past few years that the activity on our favourite forums has declined?

    Why so, we ask?

    Here are a few ideas you might like to discuss; please accept that as this is AO, I will mostly be posting in an AO context


    If you are now trying to hold down a job and raise a young family, you just don't have the time that you had at High-School & College. Also, a family is just cannot seriously expect to live the same lifestyle that you did when you were single?

    2. Internet Growth

    I can remember 9600 Baud.........dial-up.............nowadays the internet is much larger and diverse, so there is a lot more competition for people's time;and a lot more content to satisfy it?

    3. Social Networking

    The emergence of social networking sites in recent years has reduced the need for sites such as AO. People can go elsewhere to talk nonsense? The sheer volume and diverse content of these sites competes severely with those who run more specialised content locations.

    4. Malware Changes

    There is very little mindless, destructive, crap being written these days. The trend is all towards the commercial and criminal. To achieve it's objective it has to be stealthy. The implication of that is that people either know that they are infected and do something about it........or are blissfully unaware, and see no need to come to sites such as AO.

    5. ICT Awareness

    People are more ICT aware these days. They know how to use a search engine to find answers to their problems. If they don't.........they will know someone (or their kids) who does
    [Just look at AO posts from 6-8 years ago, and you will see a lot of malware and hardware problem questions that we just don't get today]

    Naturally, I have a lot more to comment on the subject, but I will leave you with those 5 for comments

  2. #2
    Senior Member JPnyc's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    I think all of those play a role, as well as improvements in both hardware and operating systems. Windows 7 is a lot more self sufficient than its predecessors. Motherboards now have onboard audio and video that is just good enough to no longer necessitate dedicated cards for those purposes. Gamers and audiophiles will undoubtedly argue that point, but for most of us it holds true.

  3. #3
    Senior Member gore's Avatar
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    Oct 2002
    Here is what I see:

    When I first joined AntiOnline back in 2002, this place was WAY different than it is now. People had an actual sense of humor back then, and if you made a thread about any given subject, you had a bunch of replies from multiple members.

    JP was kind of a cocky jerk for the most part, but people dealt with it. Remember Nihil when you first joined how the "Images Server" for Anti Online seemed to be not working like once a week almost?

    I'm sure you recall how that went, you'd log into the page, and wait....And Wait... And Wait... And finally you'd see something, but, the problem with it was that if you used a normal Web Browser with a GUI, it kept trying to load images.

    JP would come on and say that the machine was down for upgrades, or updates, or, once, he came on and said that he was in the office and the thing electrocuted him, which was weird because someone else said that the Server had been taken down by someone who didn't like AntiOnline.

    It was a little more on the Believable side because a Server going down literally EVERY week and then JP coming in to make up a BS story that it was being upgraded or something.... OK, once in a while, sure, that would maybe work, but what Server has upgrades EVERY week?

    And it was always the same thing. I remember at one point being so fed up with waiting that I would open a Terminal up, and just look at AntiOnline from a text browser like Links, or Elinks, or Lynx.

    When Jupiter Media bought this site, trouble started brewing. what is happening now, I think does have something to do with that. So many people here were so far up JP's ass that they just Believed whatever he told them. Remember that thread JP made? "Jupiter Media Screws AntiOnline Founder" and he made a huge deal about how he wasn't being paid or some bull like that?

    And then before that, the new staff members and Admins and Moderators, ALL got banned when they joined because that moron forgot to give them little GOLD DOTS and a bunch of people got together and Negged them all into being banned!

    I remember the first fix was they got like a couple thousand Green AntiPoints, and then after a while, they finally got their Gold Dots so they couldn't be banned again.

    Basically JP would come in once a week or so, start a bunch of ****, and then fan the flames until his followers would bitch and moan about everything, even though almost every person who was up his ass didn't have a clue what was happening.

    And don't get me started on how this place was being ran! JP used to say that people were Gay Bashing him, like me, he said I was a gay basher because I once brought up how he said "Well this site looks ugly now, and I guess that's what happens when you let straight people design something"...

    When I brought that up later he called me a gay basher, and I basically copied and pasted the link to where he had said that and asked why he was being a hypocrite. That pretty much ended it for a while, but he still had that stupid Gold dot, so no matter how much whining he did he got to stay until finally someone took his dot away and made him have to deal with being Negged for real again.

    There are multiple members here right now who he banned for no reason. I remember a good friend of mine here told me JP banned him years ago because he sent JP a message saying that the AP system was open to abuse and those checks and balances didn't really stop it, and what happened? Instead of fixing it, JP Negged him in a post, the same post, 4 times in a row, then, banned him.

    Now, that stuff was all how he ran things. Basically he had a major attitude problem, and for some reason people loved him even though he acted like an *******. He finally as banned, but then we had outcry from members who said it wasn't fair, and not only that a bunch of members left because JP made a new website, which didn't work, and then another site which wasn't even allowed to be shown here because it was porn.

    Now, today, and for the past year, I've watched as AntiOnline has gone from a place people came and talked and asked questions and answered them, into a place where the big thread of the day will be whining about Anti Online.

    The only thing that has changed on AntiOnline other than now having Admins and staff who don't have their heads up their asses, is that the members here LOVE to bitch and moan.

    It's like, did they forget that THEY were the ones who made posts and threads that were interesting? I mean back before Jupiter, it's not like JP ever made posts about security anymore. The only time he posted anything was generally when he was talking about the old days of AntiOnline. that's it.

    Jupiter Media bought AntiOnline, and then everyone acted like it was some huge deal and that AntiOnline was going down hill fast. Well of course it was! Do any of them expect a FORUM that MEMBERS make posts on, to keep going when they stop posting?

    AntiOnline can still be big, but it's going to take some work. For the last week I was the only mod here until Nihil finally got back. I didn't mind watching things while everyone was waiting for emails and so on, that's no big deal to me, we don't have that many problem users anymore, except ONE who was banned (Linenoise) and then he came back as Segphault, and when I logged in today, it said he was banned too, which I don't care because it's not lik he's ever made more than 2 posts that were of any help, every other post he made was gibberish and youtube links, and then of course his rude posts to others here being an *******.

    The other day, I was talking with a member (in other words, I made a post replying to someone else, and then, that got an ACTUAL DISCUSSION GOING!) and of course someone complained about that and that they were oh so offended or whatever. I cleaned the thread up myself today because I was busy yesterday and kind of forgot, but the fact remains that people on AntiOnline today are so damn obnoxious and whine so much about every little thing, it's like no wonder no one is ever here!

    I saw two people saying that "Well, the reason no one comes here anymore is because of a moderator being a big meanie head, and because everyone is so on edge".... No, no one comes here anymore because all that member does anymore is bitch and whine about how we're all big meanie heads and how everyone is on edge.

    How about instead of whining like a little baby, you post something interesting that someone might care about?

    Also, maybe we should start having contests or something, or maybe pulling back on fun threads? I mean back when I first joined people were totally annoying about posting, and they would reply to every thread like an AOL Kiddie with "Me too!" as their only response, and it was annoying, but now, no one really does that because getting a huge post count just doesn't have any real incentive like it used to where you could get into the forbidden "Addicts" section. Which was nothing more than people talking about Beer most of the time. What kind of incentive is that? You can go to any bar and talk about that and they don't care how many posts you've got lol.

    Anyway, I'm still here, and I'm still defending AntiOnline as a decent place, which is why I'm willing to fight, push buttons, and start **** if I have to, to make it survive. And I will continue to do so. I've also been thinking about getting ahold of some friends who I don't talk to very often and getting them on here.

    I think one thing that's been mentioned is that AntiOnline is competing now with idiotic things like Facebook, and they also are in some ways, competing with MySpace, thought I don't think MySpace is as bad, and also moronic things like Twitter.

    If we maybe made some extra forums, we could probably use that to drive up posting again. I mean, we have Cosmos, for things that aren't really Computer related, and we have General Chit Chat, and Tech Humor... Well what about making some non Computer Security Related things that aren't already there?

    Gaming is HUGE right now, and every idiot with 15 dollars a month is playing World of Warcraft which I HATE, but it is VERY popular. What if we had a Gaming Section? It's not THAT much of a stretch to make an AntiOnline gaming forum. We could just moderate it like we do other areas, and people could talk about Gaming Machines, and games they play, and tips and tricks for games, and maybe get going with how they deal with In Game Spammers and account theft, and other issues that do eventually lead back to Computer Security.

    We could have an area to talk about what's the latest thing in Gaming Security which I think would work because it's an area growing out of MMORPGs right now, and people need to keep their accounts safe from people who pay that game and either Steal Accounts, or Sell them, or they Spam you while You're playing.

    What about that? I mean my Wife plays WoW, and I see all the time people saying "Oh, my account got Hacked" or "Someone stole my account" and it's not like Blizzard really does anything to help, so these people are STUCK, they have NO WHERE to go! I mean have you ever really looked at the Forums for World of Warcraft? They're TERRIBLE! There are Trolls so bad it makes the ones we've had seem good!

    So basically they have no where to go and get help, and the people that should be helping, don't! That's a wide open market to me, and an opportunity.

    Let's give that a try. It would for sure open up new traffic, new members, new target audience, everything. Heh, just because I'm having trouble finding a job doesn't mean I don't know Business or how it should work, or how it should be, and I'm pretty decent at finding an opportunity. The only problem I have is that since I don't have real world experience, I rarely get listened to.


  4. #4
    Disgruntled Postal Worker fourdc's Avatar
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    Jul 2002
    Vermont, USA

    good points

    I've never understood the gaming world, but it's an app thats huge and to leave it unaddressed would be negligent. Are there any gamer gurus to mod that forum?

    Another forum would be just plain hacks... not the malicious kind. I recieve email from Make magazine and Instructables and there are some ingenious people out there. I might even part with some of my bread recipes. Some of the hacks would best be posted as a tutorial to allow pics etc.

    I've recieved some great advice on this board, given a couple of ideas out, blown a call or two... but it's all been good. For the most part we've never degraded ourselves to the flaming on trolling that say happens on Youtube or CNN. "I think the video is great" "well I think you suck" "well your momma" ........

    What can we do to bring it back? Do we need Dr Seymour Beaver to resucitate it?

    "Somehow saying I told you so just doesn't cover it" Will Smith in I, Robot

  5. #5
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Jul 2003
    United Kingdom: Bridlington

    Remember Nihil when you first joined how the "Images Server" for Anti Online seemed to be not working like once a week almost?
    I do indeed!..................actually I lurked here for almost two years because I only had a 14.4 dial-up .......... I only joined when I got 28.8

    If I might continue with my theme.................

    6. Dial-up Connections

    Back in the day, all we had was dial-up. This was pretty slow, and over here in the UK, it was charged by the minute.

    We did not have free local telephony back then, so you ended up paying the ISP and the Telco. Naturally, that reduced your internet usage, and you only went where you really wanted to go.

    What I am saying is that the environment tended to concentrate traffic, and people did not "surf" or "browse" as they do these days.

    7. Cable, Satellite, & Broadband

    This is related to #6, but I am referring to the advent of high speed connections. These allowed and encouraged people to be more adventurous; they no longer remained totally loyal to the limited number of sites that they previously visited.

    Unlimited usage billing plans contributed to this effect IMO, particularly over here.

    8. Online Gaming

    I am glad that subject has already been raised, and I agree that it might make a useful and interesting forum for ourselves. The fact that, despite the rules, real money is often involved certainly invokes a security aspect.

    Back in the day, there were precious few gaming sites and communities and if you said "LAN party" people would look at you with glazed eyes as if you had just stepped out of the latest episode of Star Trek

    Now gaming is global, and presents an enormous distraction to younger people who might otherwise visit a site such as ours?

    Please remember that back then, laptops were hellishly expensive and underpowered.............I just dug out an old one .........Casio? .......486/75Mhz, when my desktop was a PII/333Mhz, with 384Mb of RAM.

    Just a few more thoughts to be going on with

  6. #6
    Senior Member gore's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Quote Originally Posted by fourdc View Post
    I've never understood the gaming world, but it's an app thats huge and to leave it unaddressed would be negligent. Are there any gamer gurus to mod that forum?
    I know of one member here who's job is programming Games. They don't on on to often, but I think having a Game section may change that if it did get the work needed to put it up.

    I'm by no means a gamer, I don't go buying the best of everything to get frame rate to exactly what I want. I do however, REALLY like DooM, DooM 2, Final DooM, DooM 3, and the entire Quake Series, Unreal Tournament, and the Unreal Series (Basically first person shooters from Unreal and the id Software guys) and I like all the Wolfenstein Games.

    For the most part we've never degraded ourselves to the flaming on trolling that say happens on Youtube or CNN. "I think the video is great" "well I think you suck" "well your momma" ........
    That's more or less what I meant. My Wife goes on the forums for WoW sometimes and the stupidity I've seen has me wondering how some people manage to tie their shoes.

    I've seen some MAJOR stupidity, and one time my Wife had a problem with the game, and guess what? Instead of listening to me outright saying it was a server issue, the tech support person, who was stupid as a box of ****, said that She had to use some scanning tool, and take a screen shot showing the results.... And apparently, my Router may have been another problem! I couldn't even grasp that kind of idiocy, and of course the scan showed nothing, and it turned out I was right that it was on the server.

    I can't even tell how many times I've seen people who were told to do a traceroute, and then copied and pasted EVERYTHING... And by everything, I mean their own IPs too.... It's THAT bad.

    And if you ever do look you'll also notice a question like "So this new patch seems to break something" ends up with, on the first page sometimes, posts like "My dog Waffles likes to eat Pan Cakes!" and it's like WTF!

    But yea more or less the trolling that you see on Youtube is what I was talking about, and how we don't have that here.

  7. #7
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Jul 2003
    United Kingdom: Bridlington
    Hello gore

    You asked for this:

    has me wondering how some people manage to tie their shoes.
    Detailed instructions on the interwebz?


    Perhaps the people you are talking about should go here?
    Last edited by nihil; March 21st, 2010 at 11:07 PM.

  8. #8
    Fastest Thing Alive s0nIc's Avatar
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    Sep 2001
    lol i miss the good ol days too gore.
    I believe i joined a year before you did, or few months before.
    We had the forums we had IRC. we were all over the place.
    I recall we even put BRAD on e-bay.

    These days, been too busy with work and family (yes i got married to angelic_ky and we have a wonderful daughter who is turning 3yrs old this year)

    When im not doing work and family, theres house work (bought a house too but needs a fair amount of TLC)... and i play MMORPG, no not WOW.

    so yeah... life always gets to us all ey.

  9. #9
    Senior Member gore's Avatar
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    Oct 2002
    Yea, I know. I'm Married now too. But at least Mario and Luigi aren't bugging me with Magic Mushrooms that make me think I'm a giant right?

    I miss those old Sonic games, I should find a Sega.

  10. #10
    Junior Member goreswife's Avatar
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    Jan 2009
    Gore was telling me about this thread the other day and how he brought up the world of warcraft forums. The only experience he's had with that black hole was second hand, mostly from hearing me bitch about it. If someone has an actual issue with the game, forget about it, you ain't getting help from there, you'll have 20 people telling you the same thing and if you even try saying you've already tried that, you'll just get treated like an idiot. I went through that a couple of months ago, I had an odd problem that just wouldn't go away no matter what I tried, I ended up fixing it on my own. When the problem first happened, I went to the forums, got told to try everything I'd pretty much already stated I'd tried, any in game ticket I opened clearly stating what I'd done ended up getting closed with a lame canned response, I even bothered to call their tech support twice, the first guy at least tried to help, but he pretty much wasn't knowledgeable enough, the second time I called, I got hung up on, apparently the girl at the other end did not appreciate my sense of humor. I ended up trying something that was somewhat unrelated to the issue and somehow it fixed it, I guess it was just dumb luck.

    Anyway, the point is, where do you go to get an intelligent response to a problem when the official forums make a rock look smart. Then there's security issues, Blizzard's response to that was to offer the authenticator, which you have to pay for. Every time I browse the forums, I see people who end up with stolen accounts and can't figure out how it happened, sure Blizzard will help them get the account back, very slowly and painfully, but they're not really the best when it comes to prevention. Considering how popular online gaming has become in the recent years, I think there is a need for a place where people can find good and reliable information.
    Out there in the darkness, they're coming after me, a thousand stalking zombies, they want my brains to feed.

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