I wonder if any of you remember me ...
It's concerning, but unsurprising, that people still complain about the same things as they did when I used to be active here. I'm not going to offer a solution since I believe it is far too late for one. I knew the quality of this place was taking a nosedive ages ago but there wasn't much I could do.
It is my belief that a bunch of teenagers and young adults (plus a couple of oldbies) cannot properly maintain a community whose interests revolve around a niche concept. You're kidding
yourself if you think that this website is ever again going to be like it was in 2009. It was a different website back then. The staff team didn't consist of a bunch of teenagers who were hired only to moderate sections and forums, it was a bunch of mates consisting of a good chunk who knew each other well before a userbase even manifested. Those mates actually gave a crap about the users beneath them since it was a collective effort to maintain the website which, at the time, was relatively new and brewing with activity.
Over time, being a member of staff lost its original 2009 meaning. People were being hired that no one had ever heard of (me!) and those people had no ties to the community that compelled them to bother improving the quality of it. Staff stopped talking to each other and created "groups" like you mentioned. This place had become a high school and people would talk behind each other's backs and create heaps of very, very
Those people, such as myself, left or segregated themselves from the community.
Now you have the current community. From what I bothered reading in this thread, it looks like the staff team are as independent from each other as ever and the users are bored and neglected like they were a year ago.
My advice is that you guys should stop caring so much. Loosen up, enjoy your time here and stop trying to create the perfect community you loved years ago. Be lax on rules and run more events, talk to the guys in #smwc and play games with them and stop talking behind each other's backs.
However, my advice is stale, as it it what I used to tell the guys on the staff team all the time. My memory of the ~4 years I was here may be faded but, objectively, this website is still the same dying place as it was when I left. Honestly, it pains me to see that the active userbase is around 1000 knowing that it had reached 2000 and climbing not so long ago.
What pains me even more is that I know there's not much you can do about it. Nothing is going to change. There aren't going to be more events, the staff team aren't going to become any more involved with the community as they are now and the userbase is going to continue declining. I've seen discussions like this before and it always leads to nothing. Maybe there'll be a few exciting events and revamped rules, but nothing is going to "fix" things in the long term.
Can you prove me wrong? Maybe, but I highly doubt it. I'm personally done with this place so I'll just continue watching the events unfold in the future. Good luck to you guys in maintaining the community, really, as I think it's an effort that many of you stopped really
trying to exert ages ago.
Sorry for the doom and gloom post, especially if it contributes nothing to the discussion. I just felt like interjecting considering I've been a part of the website for the last 5 years ... I basically grew up here and a lot of my greatest memories are from past events held here. I've seen it all, folks. Not as much as SNN, but I can't help but lack the optimism he does when I've seen efforts like this fail again and again.