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95riosnake

I'd hoped to never have to make this announcement. (PLEASE READ - VERY IMPORTANT))

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I didn't ever see myself having to start this thread, it's been a great 4+ years but in recent months, it has become more and more of a struggle to pay the bills to keep the site online. Each month we have managed to scrape up enough funds to keep the domain live, but in coming up short yet again, we have revisited the sad possibility of closing the doors. Unfortunately this is not the first time we've had to have this discussion behind the scenes. The writing has been on the wall for a while now with steadily declining site activity and the loss of many supporting vendors. You may have noticed a screen popping up to remind you to turn off adblocker software for the site; ad dollars and a few very much appreciated remaining vendors have been the only source of income keeping the bills paid. I realize that the lack of Tapatalk functionality has no doubt worsened the situation, we have attempted to get it up and running multiple times with no success. Even with TT in place, the situation wouldn't be one that would solve our problems. 

 

In addition to financial woes, our founder Steve has approached Bryan and I to say that he needs to step down from his position and responsibilities here. Other priorities in his life have gotten to the point where he no longer has time to handle the IT aspects of keeping the site software up to date, installing patches and troubleshooting issues. I can't fault him one bit, he has spent many late nights and a good portion of money out of his own pocket to implement upgrades and bug fixes over the years and I can't thank him enough for his hard work. That said, Bryan and I have zero abilities that would cover these responsibilities.

 

So, it's time to get down to brass tacks. Rather than us three just deciding to close the doors without giving you all the chance to intervene, I decided it would be best to just lay it out for you all to see the numbers. 

 

The site requires $70/month to stay online, we currently are down to only $24.27 in our site account and the bill must be paid by 8/13/16. $70/month may not seem like a lot, but that's nearly $900/yr. I briefly considered shouldering the cost myself, but in the end I have too many expenses in life these days to take on another bill. If anyone has a solution to our financial needs to stay online, we are all ears. For example, if 70 members donated $1 a month, we'd be covered (that's $12/yr... less than a magazine subscription). But I know the chances of that happening are slim to none. The plain and simple is the site needs two things to continue: a RELIABLE source of $70/month to cover site expenses (we cannot go on any longer treading water and having to scrape up funds every time the bill needs to be paid), and someone with IT/Web software abilities to handle the workings of the site.

 

So to conclude this post, I want to ask a question. Do you all think Source is worth saving? I love this site and will be heartbroken if we close the doors, but I have had a sinking feeling that a good portion of you may not have the same attachment to the site as I do, as evidenced by the absence of many of the members I remember seeing on the regular here in the good old days. My apologies for being the bearer of bad news, but the optimist in me hopes that this thread may lead to a solution that will keep this great place up and running. I've come to think of you all as somewhat of a family and I'd hate to see this come to an end.

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If we as a group (small group...but still a group) can't come up with 70 fucking dollars a month then i'd say shut the fucking doors! I'm willing to commit to a portion of that and i have 2 teenage children and a mortgage.

 

As for the tech side of things....I think that's where the problem lies. Seems as though this site has had a lot of bugs to work out over the years. If we could get just 1 of the many computer savy guys that post here to step up.....what would he need to do and how often? 

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2 minutes ago, tony said:

If we as a group (small group...but still a group) can't come up with 70 fucking dollars a month then i'd say shut the fucking doors! I'm willing to commit to a portion of that and i have 2 teenage children and a mortgage.

 

As for the tech side of things....I think that's where the problem lies. Seems as though this site has had a lot of bugs to work out over the years. If we could get just 1 of the many computer savy guys that post here to step up.....what would he need to do and how often? 

 

That's why I thought I should post this thread rather than just throwing in the towel. I still have faith that people find enough value in the site that we could all pitch in to keep it going. I have no problem with throwing in on it same as you, I just couldn't feel good about taking on $70 a month by myself.

 

@Steve@CJPP should be able to elaborate more on what kind of commitment the IT/Web stuff is, as he handled it all over the years. If we had someone that was willing to take on that role it would be awesome.

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I love the site as do others i'm sure. Coming home from work every morning it's the first thing i do...grab a coffee and hop on here. Really hope we have some folks willing to step up and keep her going. 

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i'm also down for contributing.  where's the donate button?

 

I'm on another forum (trifive.com) for my dad's 57 when we were restoring it.  They just recently had to do the same thing.  got a mail saying they can't pay the bills anymore and are starting up a membership.  you got more picture hosting and a special name and i think a larger pm box.  could do something like that.  

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@Prokiller I think that would be cool, I'm all for offering some perks for a "membership" ... regarding the donate button, I don't know wtf happened to it. I texted Steve to let him know, we'll get it back up or set up something else.

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First off, I just want to thank all those that have made Source all that it has become in the last 4 years.  It really is hard to believe that it has 4 years since we open the doors.   We have joked about it, hell even made a thread about it, but the one reality is even if selling to our friends up north was our only option of keeping the doors open we would still chose to close the doors.  We have always aimed to keep the ads to a min with hope that what we did have was enough to keep the lights on when the vendors cash flow has stopped but that is just not the case.  I am however still trying to find a way to 1. bring the cost down even if that means cutting things like the chat room out and 2. figuring out a way to at least donate my time to work the back end of the site so @95riosnake and @Det_Riot can focus on all other aspects of the site. 

 

This site for me has never been about making money, hell even to this day if and when the time comes I need to completely remove myself from this place I would hand over the keys to Bryan and Dan with no expectation of anything other than a nod of acceptance.  It really did bug me last night to have the conversation the big 3 have but I'd rather see the lights fade then watch the site dry up because our friends up north drowned it in maple........ads.    So in closing Thank you all for the continued support over the years and if the lights do go out it's been a hell of a ride.

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@Bullittit looks like a few are willing to donate, can we get the donate button back up?

 

We can possibly set up member packages like @Prokiller suggested. Then for a couple bucks a month from a handful of people we'd be good to go!

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@Bullitt if closing down chat saves money, I don't think anyone uses it anymore =(.  I know I was the biggest proponent and I don't use it at all these days.

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found the email.  their supporting membership included:


For only 25.00 per year.

Special Title to States you are a Supporting Member.
Maximum stored Private Messages from 1000 to 5000
Maximum Forum pictures from 50 to 100

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3 minutes ago, Prokiller said:

found the email.  their supporting membership included:


For only 25.00 per year.

Special Title to States you are a Supporting Member.
Maximum stored Private Messages from 1000 to 5000
Maximum Forum pictures from 50 to 100

 

If we had people willing to do $25/yr, 34 people would have it covered, completely. That's not counting the vendors we still have as well as ad dollars so we wouldn't even need 34 people necessarily. Obviously any overage would be a good thing to keep a positive balance to pay for upgrades and other site maintenance but that definitely seems promising.

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I've paid more than that on other sites.  I'd suggest restricting the classifieds section to paying members as well.  I know we don't see a ton of activity in there, but some people (I've done it) will pay the annual membership just to sell something.

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I'm looking at our fees right now, just to give you an idea of how big a hit we take on ads being blocked.  our last payment was in April and we still haven't reached the minimum amount to have a check cut.  At this point ads don't even help anymore.   Ok this bill this month is $70 but it't no surprise that our numbers our low.  We pay that because we use to have just about 100 online member/guest at one time.  I think we could bump that down to the package below us that says we would have up to 65 members online for $45 a month.  Chat would still only allow 20 people at one time but lets be honest when has that ever happen?  @95riosnake let me look at what our defaults are set at and see what we can do to entice the masses to want to become more than just a member.   Oh and our media storage would drop form 12 GB to 8 GB.

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i think you can get rid of the chat. no one uses it anymore.  i was a big fan of it when it was on the front page, but once it got moved, it's just not worth it anymore.

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Ok here's my thought. Right now as members you get a lot but if we do a supporting member here is stuff we can do.  

 

Search Flood

  • Members can search every 15 seconds.
  • Supporting members unlimited.

Avatar

  • Members 75x75
  • Supporting members 150x150

Messages

  • Members 200
  • Supporting members 1000

Highlight Replies (all replies by members of this group will show in a different color.)

  • Members no access
  • Supporting Members only

Photo Albums

  • Members 1 Album
  • Supporting members 5 Albums

Chat Room

  • Members no access
  • Supporting members only

$25 a year and dropping us down a package would mean 22 members could support the site a year and I would also remove ads completely as it's just another thing I get to watch plummet into the depths of earth and quite frankly if we can't offer Tapatalk support because they don't have a package we can use at this time then that's the best trade off I have for you guys.  Thoughts?

 

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7 minutes ago, Prokiller said:

i think you can get rid of the chat. no one uses it anymore.  i was a big fan of it when it was on the front page, but once it got moved, it's just not worth it anymore.

What if, well i just did... made the chat room open in a popup window so you could have it open and still surf the site?

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Just now, Bullitt said:

What if, well i just did... made the chat room open in a popup window so you could have it open and still surf the site?

haha i used to do that in another tab for a while but i was sitting there by myself...

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2 minutes ago, Prokiller said:

haha i used to do that in another tab for a while but i was sitting there by myself...

Well maybe having it float so users can still search threads while talking about whatever could bring it back to life?

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3 minutes ago, Bullitt said:

What if, well i just did... made the chat room open in a popup window so you could have it open and still surf the site?

 

I used to use another tab to do that too!

 

I like all the proposals, but would also add restrictions to some sections of the site for premium members

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1 minute ago, Psychorugby said:

 

I used to use another tab to do that too!

 

I like all the proposals, but would also add restrictions to some sections of the site for premium members

That could be done as well.

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Donation button is up in the mean time I am working on an official Supporting Member package that you'll be able to purchase and that will give you access to a load of features.  

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Awesome Steve!

 

I went from being super bummed this morning posting this thread to feeling quite hopeful. Thank you to those who are throwing their hat in the ring, I really want to keep this place going. :drink_to_that:

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Sign me up for Supporting Member status!

 

Here's a thought.  I think our biggest draw is the build threads we host here.  We have some of the most badass SN95 builds hosted strictly on this site.  Maybe using that to leverage more members (not particularly supporting members) may draw more traffic to the site.  So limiting the ability to view some more popular sections without being logged in may be a good way to draw traffic.  Maybe make them viewable to a certain point and then it directs you to a page that says "Sign up to view more content" but something more to draw them in.    Just spit balling. 

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44 minutes ago, Steve-Oh said:

Sign me up for Supporting Member status!

 

Here's a thought.  I think our biggest draw is the build threads we host here.  We have some of the most badass SN95 builds hosted strictly on this site.  Maybe using that to leverage more members (not particularly supporting members) may draw more traffic to the site.  So limiting the ability to view some more popular sections without being logged in may be a good way to draw traffic.  Maybe make them viewable to a certain point and then it directs you to a page that says "Sign up to view more content" but something more to draw them in.    Just spit balling. 

I've actually thought about making the build threads actual blogs but I have been working on that for a few weeks now and i'm not quite sure how I feel about the layout.  I hope to have the packages set up to purchase soon but it's just been a busy day.

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Me trying to find this donate "button" 

 

dVJNUJlVS6yeyEYhtJIL_Confused%20Mark%20W

 

Lol, seriously though where is it? And can one just randomly drop like a $5 here and there or are we talking about just 1 yearly payment? I'm good either way 

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4 minutes ago, tony said:

Me trying to find this donate "button" 

 

dVJNUJlVS6yeyEYhtJIL_Confused%20Mark%20W

 

Lol, seriously though where is it? And can one just randomly drop like a $5 here and there or are we talking about just 1 yearly payment? I'm good either way 

hahaha @tony  should see it to the right of the main screen and this is just set up for random drops.  The packages will be a yearly thing once they are ready to go.

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hmmm been trying to donate now, but when i get to the paypal login screen, it doesnt accept my username and password.  lol   it works on paypals site, but not through here.  stupid bugs.    id love to keep the site up and running.   seems like a pretty tight nit group unlike some of the other massive sites.  i enjoy it here.

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30 minutes ago, Blackmage said:

hmmm been trying to donate now, but when i get to the paypal login screen, it doesnt accept my username and password.  lol   it works on paypals site, but not through here.  stupid bugs.    id love to keep the site up and running.   seems like a pretty tight nit group unlike some of the other massive sites.  i enjoy it here.

I'm looking into this now.

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Guys, I'm more than happy to talk to my higher ups about contributing more as a supporting vendor.  I know that when we had originally signed up the price wasn't much.  Get with me, I'd like to see this site continue.  There are too many good people on here, not to mention the knowledge, to shut it down.  @95riosnake @tony @Bullitt

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Just now, Josh@RideTech said:

Guys, I'm more than happy to talk to my higher ups about contributing more as a supporting vendor.  I know that when we had originally signed up the price wasn't much.  Get with me, I'd like to see this site continue.  There are too many good people on here, not to mention the knowledge, to shut it down.  @95riosnake @tony @Bullitt

Josh thank you.  I will be reaching out to all the vendors again as the first attempt really didn't go well.  

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You can sign me up to be a supporting member as well.  Hell I have gained more tech advice and viewed more crazy build threads that have given me more and more ideas than I ever did with my MMFF magazine subscription and the price would be about the same.

 

Also if the site went down there would be way too many unfinished build threads that would leave a void that no other site could fill lol..

Edited by Lanter
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