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Discussion: Forum Closure in 2023

lowleadlowlead Downeast, USAMember Posts: 658
From my perspective, this topic warrants its own thread.
Did a crash course on Discord.  It sounds like a very intuitive and hassle-free platform, I'm wondering if it's compatible with desktop computer use, as I loathe using a phone app for discussions.
Either way, I believe the best option is to keep this forum alive.  I hope to have more insight on that matter soon....
560Heliportdatsunrobbiegratefulnat
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Comments

  • lowleadlowlead Downeast, USAMember Posts: 658
    Also, here's Huw's Announcement for your convenience.
    panchox1560Heliportdatsunrobbie
  • bpk2300bpk2300 Florida Member Posts: 237
    edited October 28
    This is my only online home for Lego. I have a Eurobricks account, but have logged on there maybe a handful of times. This Forum fits me perfectly, and by that I mean the forum UI, the people here and the types of discussions here fit me. The pace of discussion is ideal, too (i.e. its not too fast, and I can generally keep up). 

    I don't have Facebook. I've never used Discord but I suppose I'd try it if this community decides to move there. I'm just already assuming it won't have the same "feel" and I may abandon it after a short time :(
    lowlead560HeliportBumblepantsdatsunrobbieLegoEveryoneLegopantslegomental
  • MaffyDMaffyD West YorkshireMember Posts: 3,403
    lowlead said:
    From my perspective, this topic warrants its own thread.
    Did a crash course on Discord.  It sounds like a very intuitive and hassle-free platform, I'm wondering if it's compatible with desktop computer use, as I loathe using a phone app for discussions.
    Either way, I believe the best option is to keep this forum alive.  I hope to have more insight on that matter soon....
    I use Discord extensively on desktop - it's just as easy as mobile. In fact, even easier with a proper keyboard :)
    lowlead560HeliportBumblepants
  • lowleadlowlead Downeast, USAMember Posts: 658
    ^^Good to know!
    I'm certainly open to new platforms, at the same time I fear we might lose something in the transition - the 'feel' of the forum, as @bpk2300 put it.
    560Heliportlegomental
  • pxchrispxchris Oregon, USAMember Posts: 2,125
    I use Discord on my desktop at work and occasionally laptop at home, as well as the app on my phone. It's very easy to use via a desktop browser.

    While most certainly a viable option... there are caveats.
    Forums are much better for highly focused and "topic-ed" discussions. Discord servers can have a variety of channels set up for different topics, but then all of the various discussions under that topic will inevitably mesh into each other. You loose a lot of that granularity.
    You also loose the history. In virtually no circumstance will you have the easy ability to browse through large volume of discussion on any given topic like you can in a forum setting.
    An excellent point was also made about the pace of discussion, it can be extremely easy in busy servers to loose track of what has been discussed and when since it's just a constantly scrolling chat. This makes it very hard for the casual engager.

    It's also I think important to discuss the fact that much of the Brickset forum regular demographic is of the older age set. I'm 43 and I'm very technology adept, but I still love the comfort and familiarity of web-based forums. For many of us, jumping over to a whole new platform will be just a step too far and we'll sadly loose many of our beloved members. We may gain new fresh faces, but the community would inevitably go through a major paradigm shift.

    I'm trying to look at this from both the positive and negative sides. There are certainly points to both.
    lowlead560HeliportLegoEveryonecanon03Brickfan50FireFox31
  • Switchfoot55Switchfoot55 Yellowstone, 1883Member Posts: 3,034
    pxchris, thank you for your thoughts. I too agree that, although Discord has many great qualities, it would bring additional challenges and would certainly alter at least part of the feel of the community. Something I very much would hope to retain. 

    I need to go back and find the discussion on this topic from the last time it came up, but I swear there were several members who proposed viable options that maintained a forum feel and also were able to transfer over the forum history to a new platform. Maybe I'm misremembering, but it has always stuck in my mind since reading it. 

    I'll do some digging. 
    lowlead560HeliportgratefulnatMarshallmario
  • BrikingBriking Dorset, UKMember Posts: 766
    Sad news
  • BumblepantsBumblepants DFW/BGMember Posts: 7,440
    Would these forums cost less if we dumped a lot of the old derelict threads? I'm sure we could get a few volunteers to comb thru and trash stuff that is irrelevant now.
    Modeltrainman560HeliportMr_CrosslowleadSilverLoveandhe
  • arathemisarathemis RomaniaMember Posts: 513
    How much are we talking about here? What is the damage? I would be wiling to donate a few bucks (and I imagine others too) to keep this alive. 
    560Heliportlowleadgratefulnatred237MaltonianMorkManFizyx
  • lowleadlowlead Downeast, USAMember Posts: 658
    arathemis said:
    How much are we talking about here? What is the damage? I would be wiling to donate a few bucks (and I imagine others too) to keep this alive. 
    After asking @Huw the same question in a PM, his reply was eye-watering.  I had no idea the cost!  I'll let him decide if we want to break into public discussion about donations.  I'm certainly on board for a hefty sum, but I can't swing all of it. 
    560HeliportgratefulnatSilverLoveandheMarshallmario
  • ModeltrainmanModeltrainman Reading my Bible, sorting and buildingMember Posts: 1,046
    Discord has a threads feature, now, could we dump the threads there as a backup, and 'in case'?
    560Heliportlowlead
  • 560Heliport560Heliport Twin Cities, MN, USAMember Posts: 3,382
    Considering the pleasure this forum brings me, I'd certainly be willing to pay to keep it going!
    lowleadgratefulnatCymbelinepxchrisSilverLoveMarshallmario
  • Lo1sJessLo1sJess Alexandria, VirginiaMember Posts: 321
    Willing to pay fee or subscription to keep the mostly relaxed, comfortable feel of this forum.  Like several others this is my main Lego interaction.  I am also not opposed to a few ads maybe scrolling at bottom or sides to help just not the unsigned experience where you have to move quickly or go out and in to get to click sign in.  
    lowleadSilverLoveLegopantsdatsunrobbieMarshallmarioBrickchap
  • 560Heliport560Heliport Twin Cities, MN, USAMember Posts: 3,382
    I don't need both kidneys, right?
    gratefulnatlowleaddatsunrobbieandheMarshallmario
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Chicagoland USMember Posts: 10,655
    It would be disappointing to lose the forum. I loath Facebook, and we try to help each other out here in finding deals or when there is something at one location that is not in another.
    lowleadCymbelineSilverLoveBumblepantsLegopantsdatsunrobbieMarshallmarioBrickchaprd1899
  • MaffyDMaffyD West YorkshireMember Posts: 3,403
    I know the ins and outs of Discord might seem a bit unwieldy, but honestly this forum is quite unwieldy itself! There are about 10 main threads that people contribute to every day. Then there's the random threads that start up, get a reply or 3 and then are done. And there's very few in between. I think most of these can be dealt with via channels and threads. Of course there's the benefit of decent search. My god, search. On here. It's horrific.
    WesterBricksSilverLoveBrickchap
  • Russell844Russell844 California, USAMember Posts: 2,339
    I'm totally down for a pay by the month or annual subscription. This forum is my second home.
    560HeliportLo1sJessSilverLovedatsunrobbieMarshallmariored237eMJeeNLFizyxlegomental
  • PDelahantyPDelahanty Petaluma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 293
    I'm curious as for the reason for the apparent high cost of the forum.  It's apparently not due to high traffic.  Is it because of the size?  Would it be less expensive if some old posts or perhaps entire sections were culled?  (For example, the sub-forum "Brickset.com articles" seems redundant with the comment section.  ...and the "News" sub-forum hasn't had a post since 2016.)
    SilverLove
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 7,047
    The amount of traffic or size of forum has no bearing on the cost. 

    red237Paperballpark
  • PJ76ukPJ76uk EnglandMember Posts: 863
    Is it not feasible to integrate the forum more into the main site so theres no need to pay for two hosting packages? I would be sad to see the forum go as it's my only source of Lego news but understand How's reasons for being unable to keep subsidising the forum. 
    560HeliportPhoenixiovizzitor
  • PhoenixioPhoenixio Canada/FranceMember Posts: 222
    I'm quite surprised to hear the cost is so high.  I was on other community-driven forums before and a few donations would cover the costs.  And since Brickset is so big now, I'd assume that to be much more expensive.

    I'm also curious about the ability to move the forum to Bricket itself.  Have it more integrated.  Same user accounts, possibility to cross reference comments and forum posts, etc.  And it doesn't have to be as "big" as the current one, since clearly there are categories of discussions that are much more useful, namely the daily discussions about Lego, and the marketplace, if I can judge by number of posts.  I assume it'd be a considerable amount of work, but Brickset is THE reference in term of Lego and for its database.
    560HeliportBrickchap
  • BooTheMightyHamsterBooTheMightyHamster Northern edge of London, just before the dragons...Member Posts: 1,489
    I'd be gutted to lose the forum, and I'm happy to make a donation.  How much are we talking about, per year?  £1,000?  £5,000? £10,000?
    andhe
  • BooTheMightyHamsterBooTheMightyHamster Northern edge of London, just before the dragons...Member Posts: 1,489
    @Huw  If the worst comes to the worst, would you consider an Official Brickset Facebook Group?

    If not, then I'll be setting up an 'Unofficial' Brickset Facebook Group!  :o)
    Brickchap
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 15,153
    I think there is a Brickset Facebook Group already?
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 15,153
    Given the costs and the relative lack of monetary benefit of the Forum, I definitely saw this coming.  I am definitely sad that we now have a hard-date on migrating elsewhere.
    Mr_Cross
  • pxchrispxchris Oregon, USAMember Posts: 2,125
    There is a FB group already, called Brickset Members.

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Brickset/

    It's absolutely nothing anywhere close to a replacement for our forums.
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Chicagoland USMember Posts: 10,655
    I will never join Facebook, I have plenty of other online entities likely selling my info.
    oldtodd33legomental
  • bandit778bandit778 Docking Bay 94. Member Posts: 2,349
    I must admit, due to my change in circumstances reducing my LEGO life considerably, I haven't been as active on here as I used to be.
    I still read a lot of the threads that interest me but commenting on no new Lego or my opinions on prices that I'm not paying isn't exactly what keeps the conversation moving.
    To be honest though , I'm surprised that it's lasted as long as it has considering that the loss of revenue from the forum isn't a new thing as it's been an issue for a number of years but I'll definitely be sad to see it go when it finally stops (especially the members only benefits that have come as a perk of the site).
    I've had a blast on here over the years and have made some real life friends and had some interesting conversations and trades with some great digital acquaintances in the seven years I've been a member. 
    Here's to the next 12 months, hope they are good ones. 

    P.S. For a finale, perhaps we could do the Brickset Halloween Santa in September/October next year to go out with a bang.
    560HeliportWesterBrickslowleadSeijiAmasawaSwitchfoot55red237Lobot
  • andheandhe UKMember Posts: 3,820
    I'd be gutted to lose the forum, and I'm happy to make a donation.  How much are we talking about, per year?  £1,000?  £5,000? £10,000?
    Each?

    Kidding. Also would be sad to see it go. I'd have to start doing my actual work. 
    pxchris560HeliportWesterBricksCymbelineSeijiAmasawaMaffyD
  • lowleadlowlead Downeast, USAMember Posts: 658
    I'd be gutted to lose the forum, and I'm happy to make a donation.  How much are we talking about, per year?  £1,000?  £5,000? £10,000?
    ...the middle one.
    I've been debating on whether or not it's appropriate to publicly discuss these financial issues, but what the hell.  I'm in for a £1,000 donation.  It's not a flex, others have expressed interest in donating even more!
    My motivations are transparent and one-dimensional: I wish to preserve the discourse here, as it's very unique as @klinton said so eloquently.
    560HeliportMarshallmarioBrickfan50andhepxchrisLobotGothamConstructionCo
  • PhoenixioPhoenixio Canada/FranceMember Posts: 222
    But that's weirdly expensive for this type of barebone forum...  Unless I'm missing something in the backend?
  • PDelahantyPDelahanty Petaluma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 293
    Phoenixio said:
    But that's weirdly expensive for this type of barebone forum...  Unless I'm missing something in the backend?
    Agreed.  I've hosted forums for my sites before...but eventually killed them off as social media drew everyone away from the forums and it was no longer worth it for me to bother with software updates and anti-spam moderation.  They were hosted on DreamHost's shared hosting and it was really reasonably priced at just over $100/year.  I really can't fathom why this forum is THAT expensive.  (I mean, there must be a reason, but if it's not due to the size or traffic then I'm at a loss as to what it could be.)

    Not trying to poke my head into finances or make assumptions, but I'd love to see the forum continue...and it seems to me like whatever hosting company is responsible for this forum, they're pricing things quite unfairly.
    Phoenixio
  • BrickchapBrickchap AustraliaMember Posts: 1,025
    This news is really sad. Some facebook groups like a Lego aviation one I'm in have been great, really helpful and supportive people. Unfortunately most other groups (lego or otherwise) are filled with either toxic horrid people who enjoy verbally abusing people to justify their existence, or lots of normal, interesting posts that get a few likes but no comments.
    I also hate the amount of facebook groups full of spam (and yet strangely enough will remove posts that are actually relevant to Lego and dont break any group rules, meanwhile I have to scroll through Chinese seafood markets and even Lepin posts to see anything Lego related.)
    Brickset Forum is a great place and I like how discussions are categorised. I'm currently using Discord for Lego World Builder and it is very difficult to use. I was mentioned in a really nice comment months ago but didn't see until now because Discord has all these different pages and no inbox of any sort.
    Discord could be an option, although I feel like comments would get lost even easier. I also was open to subscription fees although I'm curious why this forum is so expensive?? Not blaming Huw or anything I am just wondering what makes it so pricey.
    Is there any way we could attract new members in order to increase the site traffic and justify the expense of the forum?
  • BumblepantsBumblepants DFW/BGMember Posts: 7,440
    Even if we got enough people to try and pitch in it would just prolong the inevitable. I've noticed a lot of old timers have dropped off the last few years and a paywall would only speed that process. I think we pretty much have to find a more affordable option if we want to continue.
    Mr_CrossBrickchapandhePaperballparkbrickedin
  • BrickchapBrickchap AustraliaMember Posts: 1,025
    I'm not up in these things but is there a Facebook option for a forum type chatroom or something?? Commenting on posts would never work.
  • lowleadlowlead Downeast, USAMember Posts: 658
    Phoenixio said:
    But that's weirdly expensive...
    My thoughts as well!  If I misinterpreted @Huw's reply then I'm sure he'll correct me, but it was pretty clear.
    I also agree that we would be holding off the inevitable, but not until November of 2024. 
    560Heliport
  • Lo1sJessLo1sJess Alexandria, VirginiaMember Posts: 321
    Another year or so might also bring more options if it comes down to it.  
    560HeliportlowleadMorkMan
  • Brickfan50Brickfan50 Zwolle, NetherlandsMember Posts: 456
    In order to generate more income for Brickset we are encouraged to use the links on the top of each page. But how does this work technically? When I click the LEGO link and go to LEGO Shop I can see a referral ID in the URL, obviously linking back to Brickset? But when I then go to a product page I see no referral.
    I have to admit that I (think) never used the link before and will promise to do better in the future. It would help if I could make a short cut in my browser or on the desktop to always use that instead of typing lego.com in the browser. Would that work?
  • Lo1sJessLo1sJess Alexandria, VirginiaMember Posts: 321
    edited October 30
    @Brickfan50 I also have been forgetful in using the links but will be more diligent.  Don’t know what is received by brickset but with all of the holiday and January release purchases for shop at home and Amazon could be a smidge forward if we all made a point of using the link.

    if I use the Amazon link will all purchases count or only Lego?
    Brickfan50
  • Brickfan50Brickfan50 Zwolle, NetherlandsMember Posts: 456
    Lo1sJess said:

    if I use the Amazon link will all purchases count or only Lego?
    I looked this up. Yes, all purchases count. The commission Brickset gets varies: from 10% for let's say perfumes (that why they are so expensive LOL) to 3% on LEGO.

    PDelahanty
  • Brickfan50Brickfan50 Zwolle, NetherlandsMember Posts: 456
    edited October 30
    I'm trying to help @huw to generate more income from the forum. With regard to using the affiliate link for amazon: Brickset only gets money when you add something to your basket within 24 hours after you clicked the link. After that you have 89 days to check out and everything in your shopping cart is eligible for commission.
    Perhaps Huw could point this out in an article on the front page :-)
    560HeliportMarshallmario
  • Lo1sJessLo1sJess Alexandria, VirginiaMember Posts: 321
    @Brickfan50 we do a decent volume of purchases on Amazon with 3 generations in the house.  

    Is the percentage from Lego any good - I mean every bit helps but would hope it would be a full percent or two versus a fraction?
  • BumblepantsBumblepants DFW/BGMember Posts: 7,440
    I'm clicking thru to Amazon on the main site and not the forums though. It's easier with the deal listings to see what I want and act on it that way.
  • Lo1sJessLo1sJess Alexandria, VirginiaMember Posts: 321
    @Brickfan50 @Huw I placed 2 Amazon orders starting from the link at the top of the forum page totaling $1818.20 (1516.00 and 302.20) but they show under orders as 4 orders (1491.42, 24.58, 8.31 and 293.89).  Only one of the two had a Lego item.  Is there a way to check and see if the orders did link up and something credited to Brickset - I don’t need to know what just want to know it’s working?

    thanks
    Marshallmario
  • red237red237 Member Posts: 320
    If there is any type of donation possibility I would be willing to contribute. I also have no idea how much it costs to keep this running. So sorry but I get it.
    Marshallmario
  • BrickchapBrickchap AustraliaMember Posts: 1,025
    @SprinkleOtter That's a really good idea, PM Huw about it.
    If I were choosing between Facebook and Discord I'd probably choose discord because then at least we can have different topics for discussion similar to the current forum main page. You can also PM people easily and there's a record of discussions. (whereas facebook you keep having to click read replies or whatever and often they won't even open).
    BumblepantsPDelahanty
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