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  1. #61
    Mini Goon
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    Once the active membership has dwindled to a low enough point (must be nearly there) don't be surprised to see the forum suddenly gone with no explanation. Any protest will be insignificant by that point. Lip service to a forum has been paid in the takeover by the new owners. Credit for the import but the use of an old platform was a big hint of low commitment. The rot started before the move - new owners are not totally to blame.

  2. #62
    Initiate zero's Avatar
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    ^^^ Good point Ross, agreed. I'm back for a brief login after a long time out simply because it's not what it was, even under the old forum (which imo was better in some ways and certainly more community). I've migrated away to UKC and generally don't use forums as much as before. Sad times!

  3. #63
    Super Moderator Metric Kate's Avatar
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    Just seen on the OM Facebook page that they're advertising for an editor for Outdoors Magic. Interesting - I hope they'll make a good appointment and the new editorship will bring a more dynamic site that'll help the Forum as well.

  4. #64
    Initiate Toot's Avatar
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    Not much point enquiring who got disillusioned with who at OM HQ, nor why, I suppose - that's history. Only the reason for it remains and what'll happen about that so far as any future for OM goes, we shall see. The die is cast, it'll land where it lands. It'll be a brave and confident soul (hopefully) who takes on the role of Editor - let's hope they get proper backing. So far as the Mods go, thanks for sticking with it I reckon, especially of late - dedication above and beyond etc etc...

  5. #65
    Mini Goon Cantab's Avatar
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    Stuck my head in for the first time in a while too. Can't say I find the latest forum system too awful, though it's definitely not as good as other platforms.

    Real shame that the community has died so much, definitely a combination of factors - lack of quality content on the front page of the overall site, many established posters drifting away and undoubtedly the sense of life being suffocated out of most fora and threads by over-posting from the aforementioned resident spammer (I agree with others that you mean well Trevor but the 'latest post by' lists are laughable, as are the runs of 4 or 5 posts in a row in this thread for example).

    UKC/UKHillwalking is my haunt these days, less walking focused but good vibrant community.

  6. #66
    Super Moderator Jon Doran's Avatar
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    Afternoon, I'll keep this brief. I've worked my butt off on this site over the years and I'm off at the end of May to do something else. That's not a reflection on the site, the latest owners - Factory was taken over by Square Up media at the start of this year - or any sort of cataclysmic crisis or internal politics, it's just where I am as an individual.

    One thing I would say is that while forums or fora or whatever you want to call them aren't dead per se - see the likes of STW, UKC, Pistonheads, Mumsnet and similar - all those sites have one thing in common, strong editorial resources and an understanding of, and commitment to, building a community on the site. I don't think forums just happen any more and there are plenty of alternative options vying for people's attention - Facebook, twitter, Instagram etc.

    One thing all those forums above do have in common is a longer term history that means they have a sort of critical mass that, with care, keeps them rolling. We had that here as well, but historically we screwed it up by making the platform user hostile and failing to maintain it adequately. It was like a pub with a leaking roof and bar staff who were always busy somewhere else.

    As noted above, there's a recruitment process for a new editor - the position's been vacant since I stepped down to gear editor around 18 months ago - and I'm guessing that he or she (you never know) will have a decision to make about what happens with the forum. Personally I'd love to see a new commitment to it, but the joy of 21st Century capitalism is that unless it's demonstrably feasible to monetise something, it's probably not going to happen.

    Anyway, sorry if that all drips with ectoplasmic, world weary cynicism, but unfortunately, I think that's how the capitalist cookie crumbles.

    I do think it's a real shame. I've met some fantastic people here, virtually and in real life, and I genuinely hope that Factory will show a commitment to rebuilding the community side of the site and the forum in particular. I think it's rubbish that you have to sign into FB to comment on an article on the site and I tried to change it without success. Don't know what else to say really.

  7. #67
    Ultra King Mole's Avatar
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    Cheers Jon

    Best wishes to you in your new venture.

  8. #68
    ‹bermensch
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    My good wishes go with you, too! You've tried hard and deserve better.

    Hugh

  9. #69
    Super Moderator Jon Doran's Avatar
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    I don't think it has anything to do with what I 'deserve' to be honest, I think it's more a case that the community here deserved and deserves a properly functional forum and more - I always wanted people to have the capability to blog, share images, and generally interact on the site more easily - but OM was never in a place where that was going to happen.

    We were variously 'doing fine' as things are / focussed on other brands / not generating quite enough revenue to justify more staff and/or development etc. I genuinely thought that we'd turned a corner when Factory first bought the site last year, but actually the company, it turns out, was on the brink, hence the change of ownership a few months ago.

    I've spent some time with the guys at Square Up, which now owns Factory and, by extension, Outdoors Magic and I think they're sharp, focussed and realistic which bodes well for the future, though I have no idea what direction the site is likely to go in. For me though, it's just time to do something new. I'm going to take a few months out and recharge my batteries, then see where I am.

    OM's been a big part of my life for around 17 years or more now and it'll be odd not to be involved, but there you go. I'm sure I'll drop by at some point in the future and say hello, if the forum still exists anyway. I've been very lucky to be able to do this in the first place and while I might, with the benefit of hindsight, have done a few things differently, I wouldn't wish away any of it.

    Take care all

  10. #70
    ‹bermensch
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    jon
    Best wishes for the future and thanks for your work on OM to date.

  11. #71
    Ultra King edh's Avatar
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    Have fun Jon.

  12. #72
    Ultra King That bastard Skip's Avatar
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    I glanced at the Forum for the first time in weeks and found Jon's post of 13 May

    Firstly, a big 'thank you' Jon for all your work over the years - you made a huge contribution to the community which coalesced round the Forum.

    For several years the Forum was an important part of my life. I got advice here, made many virtual friends, bought lots of second-hand gear, and went to quite a lot of meets. Much more importantly, I made some very strong and enduring real-life friendships too.

    It's been depressing to watch OM slowly decline due to the indifference of its owners. Now your post hammers the last nail in the coffin. A sad day.

    We all owe you one, Jon. I wish you all the very best - may your future be bright.

    Skip

  13. #73
    Good luck Jon. As others have said in it's heyday OM was a great resource and I, as many others did, made many long term friendships. Thanks for all your hard work over the years.

    Steve

  14. #74
    Super Moderator Metric Kate's Avatar
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    Thanks for your efforts, Jon, and good luck in your next venture.

    I too have formed fantastic friendships through this Forum and together we've had some very memorable holidays (and more to come this summer!) As Forum veterans know, OM also provided me with a life-changing encounter with a rock on the Winter Skills course 10 years ago which has led to me currently being training officer of Central Beacons MRT - not something I expected at all when my OM journey started!

  15. #75
    Ultra King Matt C's Avatar
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    Echoing all the above, good luck with whatever you do next Jon. OM in the past was highly significant for me too , but everything moves on...

  16. #76
    Ultra King Peter Clinch's Avatar
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    Aye, as above. May the breeze on your future campsites be just sufficient to keep the midges down...

  17. #77
    ‹bermensch Taz's Avatar
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    Thank you Jon for all your hard work.
    As some know, this forum has been life changing for me in various ways.
    I'll be popping in here occasionally to contribute or just be nosy.

  18. #78
    Initiate orb's Avatar
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    Yes will pop in too for a nosy but so many posts from one person?
    Last edited by orb; 16-05-2017 at 11:03 AM.

  19. #79
    Ultra King Kinley's Avatar
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    Cheers Jon! Good luck in your future endeavours.

  20. #80
    Ultra King Diddi's Avatar
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    All the best Jon....
    Great times had and many memories made on OM.
    ...

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