Hi everyone, in response to some of the recent posts and comments that have been published I thought I’d clear up a few things and explain how this site works.
For starters, there isn’t an ‘administrator team’ or ‘developer team’, it’s just me. I’ve enjoyed creating and maintaining the website but with the amount of correspondence I now receive and with a job and family taking up my time, I apologise that sometimes it takes me a while to answer specific queries and longer to implement changes. I respond to all emails sent in…eventually!
I originally created the site in the wake of the closure of 1hss in response to a discussion on the LTAH forum. Myself and another member had agreed to team up and run the site together. He then went AWOL and I completed the project on my own. I didn’t really have any plans for growing the site but I continued posting on forums and visitor numbers have gradually increased over the years.
- Created in 2015
- There are 100,000 visits to the site each month
- There are circa 1,000 stories
- We have around 1,750 members signed up
- Pays for itself via Google Adsense
As you can see from the amount of people using the website there’s going to be a wide variety of people and as in life there’s going to be a percentage of bad apples. When I first created the site I got complaints that there weren’t enough stories being posted, as it’s grown there’s issues of plagiarism and the odd squabble between members.
It certainly gets me down when people criticise the site, its content or the authors. If I see negative comments I try to deal with them and want this to be a place people enjoy visiting. I’ve posted my own stories and can understand the disappointment of deliberately damaging ratings. Overall I do think the ratings system does even itself out but if there’s a campaign against particular author’s or less popular types of story then it’s not fair.
It takes time to implement something new on the site which is why I’ll only generally update functionality every 6 months or so and it’s really only as a result of how I see things. This is the first time in 5 years that I’ve had any mass correspondence about the site and as such I thought everything was more or less fine.
The Way Forward
I agree that using a rating system isn’t ideal. I’ll endeavour to swap this out for a Facebook style ‘Like’ system which would seem a fairer judge of the merits of each story and a thanks to the author. I’ll see if I can somehow migrate previous ratings into this.
I want this to be a place that’s inclusive and friendly so I think a reporting feature should be included which can highlight a story or comment as being inappropriate.
I’ll also change the formatting of the homepage to include more stories for longer. Ratings, views etc were my idea of a bit of fun but if people are unhappy with this then it’s time to move forward.
I’d love for someone to step forward and help out with the moderation and with the running of the site. You can email me here if you’d like to be part of this.
You can help with the costs of running the site by clicking on the adverts you see at the top of each page which will mean I can invest more time in improving the site. I’ve already upgraded the hosting earlier in the year which had been a big success with the site being much faster and more reliable.
Feel free to comment on this post with your thoughts and ideas for moving forward as it’s always nice to hear from people.
…and finally, a massive thank you to every single person who’s contributed to the site. Without your stories and comments this site would be nothing. As you can see by the view counts your work is appreciated by thousands of people.