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Topic: I'm going to miss BPL., You now have to be a paid member to post< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 10:06 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I was a member for years and enjoyed the privileged content and gear reviews.  It wasn't necessary, however, to be a member just to post and answer posts.  Well, it is now.
I didn't renew and now I won't because I don't feel I should have to pay to chat about gear.  I can understand, maybe, requiring membership to sell gear there but to just post?
Crap.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 10:36 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I think this is just a temporary thing as they were hit by a bad spam attack last week.

If it is a permanent thing they are nuts. I don't post that often there even though I wrote for them because I really don't have much to contribute to a thread about 4 oz backpacks or using an eXacto knife blade as my only cutting tool for the PCT. ;-) But informed answers/posts can come from anyone, not just subscribers (as Backpacking Mag knows) so they may be shooting themselves in the minimalist-clad foot.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 10:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I am truly disappointed.  I let my membership lapse after 7 years.  Given the direction that BPL was taking, I elected not to renew until I saw some changes.  Now this.  I don't think there is enough cash to create a permanent fix.  This is the end.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 11:14 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Yeah the whole finance thing is another discussion.

They chose to take a very weird position. A subscription based periodical that accepts no advertising. There is an obvious problem with that. Your content needs to be so valuable that you can charge enough to make a profit. But quite frankly that is hard to do with backpacking-related content. There are so many blogs these days with short gear reviews (much a joke IMO) and of course there is BGT with its much more in-depth reviews that are free.

BPL does have great tech articles by Roger, and Ryan when he decides to contribute, and Will is just an awesome reviewer that takes things to the tech side often. But you better have something NOBODY else has to charge enough to survive without advertising.

BGT does it by being totally volunteer. Testers do not get paid for writing, but they do keep the gear. Admin is all volunteer too. We even pay our own way to the OR Show. So many folks I talked to this year were blown away by that.

Personally I don't think that BPL can sustain themselves. They focus on too small a segment of the hiking public. They call it BackpackingLight but it is really Backpacking UltraLight as I found too often in my articles.

I love Addie and Will and respect Ryan. (Roger, you know...;-) I wish them the best but won't hold my breath.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 11:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I can't remember the last time I looked at the BPL Forums, never mind actually posting. I do remember it was sometime around when they added the SUL sub-forum. I used to enjoy the ideas and enthusiasm of that forum, but haven't found myself going there for quite some time.

That said, I hope they figure out a way to continue and maintain the quality of the content!
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 11:43 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't understand the nature of spam, but I've been registered at BPL for like 7 years.  Wouldn't they be able to limit the shutdown to newish registrations?
Ah well, I was going there less and less often.............

I did catch the packraft bug there, though.  Woo-Hoo!


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 12:14 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I let mine lapse this year after several years and was still considering resubscribing. I guess for my job it could be considered professional research- but they will not pay for it.

It really is Backpacking Super Ultra Light. To say it's niche is an understatement.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 12:28 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Perhaps, but though I am not UL all of the time, I learned a lot from the discussions there, as I do here.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 1:05 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

the gear swap section is awesome...quality stuff,easy transactions and stuff sells lightening fast there as well if youre selling.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 9:35 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I used to be on there but got discouraged after they started charging to post to buy or sell gear. I guess now they want to charge for any type of posting. I hope it's still free to go over there and read the posts. I usually get some type of new info off of there every so often.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 9:47 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Funny thing that folks will drop $20 on a case of beer, which according to my long-departed uncle can only be rented and only for a short time, but demand that other more persistent things, like forums and forum conversations which although ephemeral do last longer than a beer, be free.

And it's the same $20.

5 gallons of gas.

Wow.  Splendificent.  The Power of Mind.  Good job, Everyone!

Drake
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 10:04 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Here is the whole story straight from the source

Toes North I'd be happy to buy you a gift subscription for a year. Send me a PM.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 11:48 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I have been wondering when this was going to come up on other forums...

I will admit, I have spent a fair amount of time over at BPL, but have always refused to pay. I had a few people from there send some pretty ugly emails to me once I simply signed up and listed my blog in the "On The Web" sub forum at BPL, and while it is probably a bit childish of me, since then, I decided that I wasn't going to be giving this site any of my money. Especially when there are indeed other forums such as this one and even WhiteBlaze that I can get much of the same information from. But I will admit, I would like to be able to read the articles on the site (especially the ones by Ray) but I wasn't giving in...

I despised the fact that one had to be a member to list something for sale on the site, but I didn't care since I don't really sell to much gear, and I could at least respond and buy if I needed to. But, I always felt that it was a pretty crappy thing of them to do...

Then I noticed that I couldn't post on any of the posts within the site now. At first I wondered what the hell?! but then realized that it was due to all the SPAM, and I will admit, it was a bit annoying... But when I realized how they decided to try and counter this, I thought it was pretty silly. I am not a computer techy kind of guy, but come on, there has got to be a different way to deal with this...cutting out all the free member's posting privileges... that is just stupid, but not surprising...

I know that according to the site, this has been a "temporary" thing and I keep expecting to go back and see the site corrected, but it hasn't happened yet... And TBH, I wouldn't be surprised if they don't lift the ban any time soon, especially if people start paying just to post on the site...I could see them letting this linger on a bit... Either that or people will just stop all together. On the other hand, maybe this is their way to shut down the site slowly...

Who knows... I still ain't paying though.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 12:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Drake @ Oct. 27 2012, 9:47 am)
QUOTE
Funny thing that folks will drop $20 on a case of beer, which according to my long-departed uncle can only be rented and only for a short time, but demand that other more persistent things, like forums and forum conversations which although ephemeral do last longer than a beer, be free.

And it's the same $20.

5 gallons of gas.

Wow.  Splendificent.  The Power of Mind.  Good job, Everyone!

Drake

There are a lot of things that happened with BPL management prior to this latest spin.  It would take far too long to go into specifics bit sufface to say, when someone uses membership funds to perform a leveraged buyout to get ownership of his site back by promising much and delivering very little, it leaves a bad taste in everyone's mouth.

Has anyone noticed that those I would consider experts no longer post there?  Ray, Will, Doug J, Mike C, Skurka, Chris W, Townsend, etc.  There is a trend here and it has nothing to do with not allowing non members to post on the forum. Ryan Jordan screwed this up a while ago and managed to alienate many with his business actions.  Not to mention alienating almost ever UL Cottage Manufacturer with an article that was the equivalent of verbal diarrhea.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 12:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I found the forums there pretty useful.  Not useful enough that I was ready to pay an annual membership though.  Still, I will miss the forums there.

I did not find their bias toward SUL all that extreme.  There was plenty of light and UL discussion and even the SUL forum had info I found useful.

I just don't see paying for forums.  For one thing, pay forums will attract fewer posters so content will suffer.

Their articles may or may not have been worth paying for.  I don't know since I haven't seen them.  There wasn't anything I could see there that made me think that I was missing all that much.  Maybe if I had seen more I might have felt differently or maybe it would have verified that I should keep my money.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 12:20 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You bring up a good point.  The amount of free content that non members have posted on the forums is significant.  So although the forums were free, the sharing was tremendous.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 3:27 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Hilarious, a spammer just figured out how to spam BPL without being a member....

Here


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 8:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't follow the politics of BPL, though I have always considered their approach to the e-community to be pretty rational.  A business has to prosper and if you're not going to be a portal to somebody else's shopping cart, well, seems a membership fee is what you have to do.

It's a case of beer for god's sake, $20, small ransom to pay for your freedom from commercial assault.

Which is my point.  Not whether or not Jordan is an arrogant prick or whatever.  He's short.  It happens.

And I'm ok with that, too.

Drake
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 9:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Personally, I would rather spend the $20 on beer and then read the free forums...  :)

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 28 2012, 12:28 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The forums don't give me much; it was the content of the articles that I paid for.  Although not openly discussed, the membership drop has been significant in the past 12 months because of the lack of content.  The forum issues are simply the tipping point.

Pay $25 to have each thread spammed?  Beer sounds much better.

So Drake, are you a member because you seem to intent on spending others' $25.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 30 2012, 4:32 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

FYI for those of you who weren't members (i.e. paid membership) but were registered on BPL, the latest word from Roger et. al. is that sometime next week, subscription prices will be lowered to a nominal amount with those who were already registered grandfathered in with a "free" subscription.

Nothing sounds settled in terms of long-term plans and this is apparently meant to be a short-term stop-gap measure.

I don't pay any attention to the politics over there but I've gotten great MYOB info, as well as exposure to quite a few cottage companies.  I mean, where else am I going to hear about a titanium cathole trowel?  :D


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 30 2012, 4:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I probably posted five times in as many years. They are more rabidly about gear and not so friendly as other forums, so no loss. Overmoderated, imo.

Sometimes I watched post after post and wondered if anyone uses that light gear. They certainly are a varied bunch - I couldn't figure a group that debated the identity of a juniper tree and no one could figure it out, but, I guess that is inconsequential as long as you have the lightest tooth brush.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 31 2012, 12:50 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Like a few others, I joined BPL for the article content (MLIFE, even), not for the forums.  My personal style is BackpackingSortaLight, so I don't feel like I'd have much to contribute, even if I wanted to.
Being an Engineer, I live the techie stuff though, which the BPL articles have in spades.

What I miss is the store.  There were a couple of Cacoon things I wanted.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 31 2012, 2:46 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I feel their pain regarding the spam attacks.  I'm active on a forum that gets many multiples the amount of traffic that BPL gets and it's been hit hard recently, too.  it's a big target.  I joined BPL a long time ago, but didn't find the atmosphere there to my liking.  haven't been there for a few years, at least.

I'm okay paying for a site that provides the sort of content that I like.  I've paid up for hammockforums, but I found myself posting just in the OT forum mostly and not making use of the other members' stuff, so I let my sub lapse for awhile.  

spam protection needs to take many forms.  you've gotta hit it hard.  I'm told that the spam attacks lately were bots combined with actual people following up to circumvent measures like captchas and logic questions.  it's going to take a multifaceted approach to stop that kind of spam.

okay, you can try to hit it with a hammer and force people to pay to use the site, but then the spammers are going to start using stolen credit card information.  the cycle goes on.  you just have to make it a PITA for a spammer to do their business and they will go after less well protected sites.  captchas AND logic questions for all new registrants.  e-mail confirmation links.  captchas AND logic questions for the first 10 or so posts or whatever.  adaptive word filters for crap like handbags and pharmaceuticals and cell phones.  make it hard.

yeah, that kind of stuff can inconvenience legit users.  but you can relax the restrictions for long established frequent posters who have track records of legit posts.  it's better than creating a huge paywall and alienating good contributors to the site.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 05 2012, 12:35 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Drake @ Oct. 27 2012, 9:47 am)
QUOTE
Funny thing that folks will drop $20 on a case of beer, which according to my long-departed uncle can only be rented and only for a short time, but demand that other more persistent things, like forums and forum conversations which although ephemeral do last longer than a beer, be free.

And it's the same $20.

5 gallons of gas.

Wow.  Splendificent.  The Power of Mind.  Good job, Everyone!

Drake

Well if sitting next to the $20 beer was a competitor who was giving out free beer, I probably wouldnt pay $20 for beer either.

I dont have any issue donating money to support sites I use though, especially if it means no advertising, I just dont really use BPL.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 09 2012, 3:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I posted in the food section often and I noticed that since it went to pay-only there hasn't been a post since end of October!!
I enjoyed the forums, lots of geeks on it - so great conversations. But....I still have a bitter taste over the magazine and not getting my money out of that deal years ago.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 09 2012, 9:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

We did it to ourselves. Everybody saying how much they value the forum more than the rest of the site. So RJ finds a way to try to make money off that.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 12 2012, 9:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

So you previous posters can post again. You'll have a -F next to your name now. There are some bugs of course.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 12 2012, 9:46 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Yep, I got an email.
I'll probably wait a bit but it is good news, I think.


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(Curmudgeon @ Nov. 12 2012, 8:42 pm)
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You'll have a -F next to your name now. T

Failed to Extract Money ;-)

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