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March 24th, 2008


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11:59 pm - update re: basic accounts and other issues of the week
Things have clearly been crazy while I was gone. I'm in the middle of catching up, but I wanted to respond to some of the issues at play, to the best that I can.

First, thank you to everyone who is publicly critiquing what's going on, protesting, and otherwise making their voice known. To me, this is a sign of passion, and a perfect guiding post for helping LJ understand its constituents. Companies (and their advisors) actually like hearing people's unfiltered opinions, even if they don't always like what's being said. I'm not going to be able to respond to everyone's comments personally because of time, but I am reading them all.

LJ is aware that it made many mistakes concerning the change in Basic Accounts. Here's their comment. In short, things are being discussed about what to do. Personally, I'm a big fan of the suggestion made by many users to make Basic Accounts available by invite-only. I think that this would balance many of the issues at play while still giving LJ room to innovate wrt financial models. Given all of the feedback from y'all, this is what I'm going to push for, but I can't promise anything.

One thing to keep in mind wrt economics. It is very rare that old posts, old communities, and old accounts die. Over time, there is a lot more content and the public items get more traffic as they get picked up by search engines. Even if LJ took on no new users, the costs of maintaining the site would go up every year. This creates a tricky financial situation because it requires innovative new ways to recoup those costs and come out ahead each year without cruelly punishing users. Most people pay for accounts because they value LJ, not because they want extra features. The percentage of folks who want and will pay for extra features is actually quite small (although typically vocal). This is why it's tricky to figure out a good economic system that will benefit everyone. Back in the day, ?Tripod? did a study of how much people would pay to not have ads on their homepages - they found that people were willing to pay something like 20% of what it actually cost to maintain those pages. Economically, that doesn't add up and often results in the death of sites. Most of us don't want LJ to die and so we need to find a financial solution that will allow LJ to come out ahead, grow, and put savings aside for the future. The goal isn't to become MySpace, but it is to be profitable. We just need to find a solution that will benefit everyone. And as anyone who lived through the last bubble and is cringing over the current one knows, this is not easy. Even ads aren't the panacea that folks might wish for, but they are a far better bet than most things. That's why we have to innovate in this space.

The same challenge faces us wrt features. How can LJ grow to be more valuable to more users without alienating those who are passionate about LJ? In order to figure this out, it's important to pay attn to how LJ is being used in different countries. Those of you who don't speak Russian may not realize that Russian LJ use looks a lot more like the public blogosphere in the States than it does like the LJ culture in the States. It's where political debate takes place and even the government has LJs to talk back to their constituents. This is a separate LJ culture and there's often very little interaction between some of the different cultures here. Thus, as LJ grows, it can't just take into consideration the vocal U.S. LJ users, but also the LJ users elsewhere. For example, many of the Russian LJ users want to be hyper visible and attract millions of readers, while this is not the norm in the States. Again, balance is key and it's tricky. It's not just one community out there, but many... and they are often fragmented and unaware of each other.

Many have asked why here important announcements are being made at lj_2008 instead of news . The reason is actually practical, not deceptive. Folks feel as though blasting too much too often on news would overwhelm many users. Yet, there is also understanding that trying to track what's going on across multiple LJs is confusing as all hell. We're going to plot on solving that one.

Last week, there was a bug in the system related to interests resulting in the removal of some interests. Although the interests that disappeared were random and all over the place, many thought this was intentional censorship by LJ. This was not and the problem was fixed as soon as it was discovered. Please let me know if anyone is still experiencing this problem.

Anyhow, more shortly... but hopefully this helps clarify a few things.

(29 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:rydra_wong
Date:March 25th, 2008 09:29 am (UTC)
(Link)
Last week, there was a bug in the system related to interests resulting in the removal of some interests. Although the interests that disappeared were random and all over the place, many thought this was intentional censorship by LJ. This was not and the problem was fixed as soon as it was discovered.

Okay, I've got to ask: if it was a "bug", why was it announced as a "filter" in changelog ? And why has LJ not made any kind of statement about it, despite the huge numbers of people in news asking for an explanation?

Frankly, the interests that disappeared weren't random. If disappearing interests had included things like, say, "chocolate" and "shopping", it would look a lot more random. It didn't.

I can buy the possibility that a filter meant for some other use (words that might trigger inappropriate ads, for example) was imposed on the popular interests list accidentally or as the result of misunderstanding.

But the fact that no-one from LJ's management seems prepared to make a statement about it doesn't look good. One vague comment from a staffer that it was a "mistake" that doesn't reflect "company-wide opinion" really isn't enough.

Given past events, it tends to encourage the impression (accurate or not) that LiveJournal would rather not have certain groups and interests around.

And right now, LJ isn't doing anything to dispel that impression. This is not good PR or customer relations.
[User Picture]
From:brock_tn
Date:March 25th, 2008 11:37 am (UTC)
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I quite agree. Given the degree of congruency between the list of affected interests on the "accidental filter" and the list of subject matters which LJ management has repeatedly suggested that they would prefer not be hosted on LJ, I cannot believe that this event was not intentional on someone's part. LJ's management has a history of NOT dealing in good faith with its users, and their lack of an open and forthright response to this latest issue is NOT helping.

I should also point out that I am not into fanfic, and that none of the individual journals or communities on my flist have been directly affected by JL management's stupidities over the past year-and-a-half. I do have friends I care about very much who are leaving LJ because they are fed up with the way LJ is being run. And to a certain extent I resent JL's having forced them to that choice, as I resent having been forced to establish accounts at other journaling sites in order to remain in touch with them.

LJ might wish to start taking issues like that into account, as well.
[User Picture]
From:mcfnord
Date:March 25th, 2008 08:14 pm (UTC)
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where are you friends going?
[User Picture]
From:cacahuate
Date:March 25th, 2008 04:30 pm (UTC)
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Yes, this. I find it very hard to believe that someone accidentally created a filter and then accidentally added a bunch of search terms to it that accidentally all had to do with potentially unsavory things like fandom, depression, and sex.

Your suggestion that the filter may have already existed and was accidentally applied to the popular interests page is plausible, though.

danah, I don't think people are going to be satisfied with your explanation, just so you know. We want to know what really happened, and while we understand that it may very well have been a mistake on some level (e.g. accidental application of the filter) it just doesn't seem likely that the entire thing was just a random bug.
[User Picture]
From:cos
Date:March 26th, 2008 02:02 am (UTC)
(Link)
I'm not satisfied with that explanation, but more generally, I think the big issue here is that many of us simply don't believe SUP anymore. We think they're trying to hide things from us, and when that doesn't work, they try to lie their way out of it, and if that doesn't work either then they try to come up with the minimal amount of information they can mix in with the lies to make it plausible. So we just don't believe what they claim, and it's a vicious cycle: even if they tell the truth we probably won't believe them now.
[User Picture]
From:tsukinofaerii
Date:March 25th, 2008 12:52 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Not worried about the interests. ^^; I've seen enough managerial hand-wringing and "who do we blame" to have a vague idea of why we're not getting an information on that. Info would be greatly appreciated, for the record.

That's a pretty tricky thing. I don't think there's any immediate reconciling between the Russian and USA style of LJ uses. Off the top of my head, I'd say the only way to go would be to please everyone, as redundant as it sounds. If you please the USA members, the Russian members will lack a service they need, and if you please the Russian members the USA members will be exposed. It would help if I knew how LJ is planning on offering that extra visibility, because then I could make suggestions on how to keep it from affecting my side of the western pond. As it is, I'm assuming LJ Explore. In that case, my suggestion in lj_2008 stands: allow users to flip a journal-wide switch ala adult content settings (which I don't like and believe are ineffective, but that's neither here nor there) and then have another flag to reverse that setting on individual entries. Also have a "no vote" decision on active journals available so that people who don't care might still get spotlighted, but not as much as the people who want to promote their LJ. (Inactive LJs might be defaulted no "no" just to respect the privacy of their absent owners and because they're dead content and thus not needing any attention.) Russian members could flag their whole journals and keep a few out of the immediate public eye, and USA-based members could happily do the exact opposite. Anything else could be designed with that kind of versatility in mind (isn't versatility why so many people love LJ as a tool too?). I don't see the journals styles of either side changing any time soon, so this would be a compromise.

For profit-making, I still think that offering a mix-and-match paid package would up the number of people paying the site. I'd be willing to trade Scrapbook for 100 icons, and comment edit for extra customization. Maybe LJ could open up something with the layout-makers, where they do the design and the users pay to have it and implement it—maybe especially paid-styles for basic users? Some of the money could go to the designer and some to LJ specifically and only for the ability to implement the layout.

Has anyone thought to make an unofficial LJ Comm for brainstorming these things amongst the users? I know there's suggestions , but that's more User > LJ and not really User > User. Sometimes I think that if we hashed out what we want and think will work for LJ all the way around, it'd be easier to present it and let the business-end figure out how to make it work.
[User Picture]
From:proggrrl
Date:March 25th, 2008 01:46 pm (UTC)
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Thanks for this post. I am perhaps more sympathetic than many US LJ uers in that I did not participate in the strike, and completely understand the need for SUP to make some kind of profit here.

My beef is with the effect this new policy has on my readers. I know many users who join LJ only to read others' content, comment, and dialogue with others in comments. This new policy is really hurting that aspect of the LJ dialogue.

I could definitely live with this invite-only idea. If I can invite folks to join for free, I'll still be able to gain more invested readers.
[User Picture]
From:cos
Date:March 26th, 2008 02:05 am (UTC)
(Link)
I think those first two paragraphs point out the contradiction: Yes, I want LJ to support itself, but they need to provide value to make me feel like paying. I pay for several accounts, and one of the main reasons I pay is because this is such an easy place for anyone I know to get an account of their own and read mine. Both ads and requiring payment are barriers that will make people more reluctant to get accounts to read my stuff, thus depriving me of the value I've been paying for, and reducing my motivation to pay.
[User Picture]
From:dariusk
Date:March 25th, 2008 02:44 pm (UTC)
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The difference between Russian/US LJ culture is both really important to know about and also entirely fascinating. Are there any papers or essays out there about this? Some basic googling fails to pull up anything.
[User Picture]
From:danahboyd
Date:March 25th, 2008 02:53 pm (UTC)
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Unfortunately, not that I know... I do know that there are qualitative researchers working in this area, but I haven't seen any proper reports on the topic yet. If you want to follow LJ-related research, check out lj_research
[User Picture]
From:turbobeholder
Date:March 27th, 2008 10:58 am (UTC)
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Are there any papers or essays out there about this? Some basic googling fails to pull up anything.
Comprehensive research ? It's doubtful, but difference itself is noted now and again. And reasons are mentioned sometimes.
Generally, it's conditioned. Of course, one of factors leading to mentioned absence of other prominent services that could take this load being plentiful activity of Nosik and other such people.
[User Picture]
From:beckyzoole
Date:March 25th, 2008 04:02 pm (UTC)
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Thank you for weighing in here, and for reinforcing the point that LJ really does -- or should -- like hearing User feedback. My father was in sales. He used to say that the best thing he could ever hear from a prospect was "No, and I'm going to tell you why".

I think that many passionate LJ users consider themselves to be "LJ Members", not passive consumers. They want a more responsive forum in which to interact with LJ management.

I think that many passionate LJ users would gladly throw money at LJ if only LJ would, in turn, be more responsive and less commercial-oriented.

I think LJ could offer different levels of paid account, "membership packages" in which the person who pays, say, $50/year gets read-only access to a moderated friends-locked community especially for "members", where the Advisory Board and staff post special feedback polls and solicite suggestions. For $100/year, a member could get moderated commenting in this community; for $200/year, unmoderated commenting; $500/year might buy moderated posting privileges.

Most important, membership levels should also be rewarded for a certain number of volunteer hours, instead of payment. There is a core set of passionate Volunteers who love and support LJ, and some are also unhappy with the way their knowledge of the LJ community has been disregarded. You'd probably end up with a community mostly made up of dedicated Volunteers, with the occasional passionate User who spends too much time at a well-paying job to put in many volunteer hours.

This would only work if members perceived that their opinions were taken seriously, of course.
[User Picture]
From:mcfnord
Date:March 25th, 2008 08:11 pm (UTC)
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there's a difference between striving to be profitable, and striving to be more profitable. this is the first i've heard that LJ might be unprofitable. has bandwidth stopped getting cheaper? if cost of traffic to old content was the issue, then advertising on unauthenticated page views would be a solution, and that solution would incentivize sign-up. this works well for those LJ russians who want a million page views. sign-up is a path to upsell, but it's also a path to greater community. icon limits, not a warm fuzzy feeling, pushed me into upsell. wreck the user experience of free participants, and you'll have fewer, and that will cause fewer upsells. "we had to destroy the village in order to save it."
[User Picture]
From:brock_tn
Date:March 25th, 2008 09:02 pm (UTC)
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It's not so much the issue of bandwidth so much as it is the ever increasing cost of severs and the staff and resources (office space, power, AC, Jolt,) needed to support the servers as the volume of stored data increases. Since data volume increases geometrically, those costs increase geometrically too. But the income from increasing membership increases arithmetically. Inevitably the two curves cross.

Or so I grok things, anyway.
[User Picture]
From:mcfnord
Date:March 25th, 2008 11:52 pm (UTC)
(Link)
brad did author highly optimized storage tools, now widely adopted, that increase speed and reduce redundancy needs. why add staff? why expand square footage? contract these things, if anything. monetize unauthenticated page views for cost recovery. they say they want to 'add features'... at some point the concept of a publication-based social network has built itself out. i met brad on one occasion, and we talked about how myspace and facebook are identity-based, while lj is publication-based, and how each has its own potential audience. alright, they've leveraged identity authentication with openid., and embedded featuresets like flash extend features without lj's effort over overhead. i think lj has established its niche. it's not going to grow. cost control and cost recovery are all that's left. and that's what this is. I believe SUP's misleading us about adding significant features. nor are they insolvent. page views can be monetized without sacrificing community, and initiatives to monetize at the cost of community are unwise.
[User Picture]
From:brock_tn
Date:March 26th, 2008 12:34 am (UTC)
(Link)
Actually, I agree that with proper management, a site like LJ can be self supporting, paying its overheads and reasonable salaries to the staff. What I do not think it is capable of doing is generating the sort of ROI that 6A and SUP seem to believe they can extract from the site.
[User Picture]
From:cos
Date:March 26th, 2008 02:07 am (UTC)
(Link)
... which is why I think by far the best thing for LJ would be to be sold to a nonprofit that would manage it for its own sake, with a goal of healthy self-supporting growth. I'm very interested in actions that will convince SUP that LJ isn't worth their trouble and that they should sell it. So ironically, for the first time since I got my account 8 years ago, I now no longer really want LJ to make money. I want it to start failing, to save it.
[User Picture]
From:doingsoso
Date:March 28th, 2008 08:04 am (UTC)
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Exactly.
[User Picture]
From:beckyzoole
Date:March 25th, 2008 11:02 pm (UTC)
(Link)
the interests that disappeared were random and all over the place

Have you seen soph 's code analysis? He explains it very thoroughly, complete with links back to the code itself.

The interests that disappeared were only those stored in an array named INTERESTS_KW_FILTER.

I know that all sorts of bugs can happen, with all sorts of unintentional effects.

But it is clear there does exist an array that appears, from its name, to have been created for the sole purpose of filtering interests. That array does contain interests that LJ has balked at in the past, such as "porn", "bisexuality", and "fanfiction".

Have you seen the entire array of interests yourself, or are you relying on the word of others that it is "random"?

If you have seen it yourself and are content that it is indeed random, and that it has not been modified since it was turned off at the Popular Interests page, please let us know.
[User Picture]
From:pyrop
Date:March 25th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Those of you who don't speak Russian may not realize that Russian LJ use looks a lot more like the public blogosphere in the States than it does like the LJ culture in the States.
Do you feel that SUP understands what the English-speaking side of LJ looks like?

Edited at 2008-03-25 11:04 pm (UTC)
[User Picture]
From:turbobeholder
Date:March 27th, 2008 10:41 am (UTC)
(Link)
Do you feel they care to ? They may have their own agenda, after all.
[User Picture]
From:turbobeholder
Date:March 27th, 2008 10:39 am (UTC)
(Link)
LJ is aware that it made many mistakes concerning the change in Basic Accounts. Here's their comment.
Companies (and their advisors) actually like hearing people's unfiltered opinions, even if they don't always like what's being said.
It depends on what company actually tries to do. See for yourself how much Nosik liked hearing it all: he said it himself in that infamous interview.
Advisors are fine, but your "advisor board" was translated to Russian into term that should be translated back as "observer council". That is, wording in which You and Brad are clearly not supposed to affect anything.
LJ is aware that it made many mistakes concerning the change in Basic Accounts. Here's their comment.
(LJ or SUP?) Evidently, but isn't it more important whether did they gone out of their way when they did it, or when they moved back ? It's point when more people reacted, but it's not something unique, it's merely one more point in the line of changes. Where this line leads ? Aren't many users see trouble not in ads issue as such, but in "how it's done" and things revealed by that interview ?..
Returning to previous question: my English is a bit rusty too, so i ask English-speakers: here's some difference between "mistakes" and "attidude", is it not ?..
it's tricky to figure out a good economic system that will benefit everyone.
Yes, but this also is entangled with another issues You mentioned:
Those of you who don't speak Russian may not realize that Russian LJ use looks a lot more like the public blogosphere in the States than it does like the LJ culture in the States.
Exactly! Russian LJ contains many things US "netizens" would do at other places. Mostly because lots of people didn't knew about any other ways to do it (and even existence of other blogs) when they came in LJ, now they are "rooted" with content and relations — and stuck.
balance is key and it's tricky. It's not just one community out there, but many... and they are often fragmented and unaware of each other.
Good point. There's too many different needs to embrace all at once. Note that some paid users already requested variant packgages, even in that news thread.
In other words: LJ grew so good it already outgrew itself as an unified system. Too big to find one balance for all parts. If it will ever develop further (not be turned to myspace or something like instead), it needs much more flexibility, anyhow. Of course, cutting off most boughs is always an option, but with its own disadvantages.
There's only one real issue: will it be done in LJ more community-friendly or more Nosik-friendly way (at any rate, outside LJ it surely will be done very Nosik-unfriendly way after this lesson).
The same challenge faces us wrt features. How can LJ grow to be more valuable to more users without alienating those who are passionate about LJ?
Answer is simple: NO WAY. Example: no single approach could satisfy simultaneously people who wants free speech and people who wants focuses of their phobias eliminated from internet (and real world as well, btw). "Compromises" can only make matter worse, neither party satisfied. Would wikipedia-spawned idea that authors have to negotiate "NPOV" about values of Pi be helpful here ? That's unlikely.
but hopefully this helps clarify a few things.
I don't see this as much clarifying, but You obviously pointed out some important issues. In any case, thanks for efforts and caring about community problems.
From:snapperboy
Date:March 28th, 2008 08:12 pm (UTC)

competing interests

(Link)
Russian LJ contains many things US "netizens" would do at other places.

I think this may be the crux of the conflict. I, as a LJ US user, have several other public blogs that are designed to attract a wider following. My LJ blog is completely different. I don't want or need a wider following at LJ. In fact, my LJ is friends-only and high screened for a much smaller and hand selected (from among LJ users) venue.

If what LJ Russia most wants and needs is also what LJ US (or English speaking) most wants to prohibit, then what? Must it be an either or? Could it not remain segregated (with different features for different countries or other segments) in order to better serve the user base?

What would it take for SUP to come clean about this conflict of interest?
[User Picture]
From:turbobeholder
Date:March 28th, 2008 09:21 pm (UTC)

Re: competing interests

(Link)
I think this may be the crux of the conflict.
I see it as nothing more than a most extreme example of a simple fact many other LJ users already mentioned in other contexts: needs differs too much.
If what LJ Russia most wants and needs is
"as Louis XIV's physician said, “I am the Hospital”" (Yuz Aleshkovsky)
Who is "LJ Russia" in this phrase ? Is it SUP ? Nosik ? Nosik's toadies ? People who translate Nosik's interview to disillusion you English-speakers ? People who collect facts about Nosik suppressing free speech everywhere he appears and post links to everyone, Brad included ? People who won't give a shell (and i mean spent and non-reloadable shell, not good one) for all this turmoil ?
It's part of the same point: different groups have few in common, both here and there.
LJ US (or English speaking) most wants
The same. Whom do you mean ? "Free-speech advocates" or "total internet politcoerrction" crusaders ? "like!" & "cute!!1" fan-girls or their parents scarred by tubbyvision so much they don't even want to see independent research on topics they'd be happy to troll about ? English-speaking community contains quite opposite groups too, as well as lots of people in between extreme points... even i see it and i should be next to last to know: never did anything to research this issue but involuntary observation.
What would it take for SUP to come clean about this conflict of interest?
Nothing. They just do whatever they want, only recoiling when reaction is too hot. IMHO right now this conclusion looks most plausible.
[User Picture]
From:doingsoso
Date:March 28th, 2008 07:48 am (UTC)
(Link)
I am very glad the interests list thing wasn't intentional. However there are people who are still very upset. It would help tremendously if someone would post something in one of the "official" news journals about the mix up with the interests. There are still many people who still believe it was intentional and are still angry about it.
---------------------------------------
I made a post in news about this and I wondered if it would work here with LJ.

Make the journal types multi tiered and make the subscription fee low enough on what was free accounts to help pay for things. I'm adult, and I know that the bandwidth and so forth costs money.

If LJ instituted a basic, no frill, one icon, one layout free account, and charged a subscription fee of say 6.00 or 7.00 a year for what used to be a basic account. And then a medium price for maybe a basic plus account(more icons and services but not the full range). More people may be willing to pay for a subscription. members could choose what level of service they're willing to pay for instead of having a basic account and one paid account. I've always thought that set up was goofy.

Users used to have a choice between free, and ads supported, and 20.00 or more a year, depending on the way they paid and other items they purchased. Duh, people are gonna go for the free account with no ads. They don't want to plunk down $20.00 or more in one chunk. And they don't want to have to remember to pay for a monthly fee. And the extra user pics weren't worth the ugly ads on the page to sign up for the plus accounts.

Solution:

Basic free account- 1 icon, and 1 layout. Period. No choices.

6.00 - 7.00 a year - (old basic free account) Basic account- 6 icons, and choice of limited number of layout and limited customization.

9.00- 10.00 a year- Basic plus - (old plus account) 15 icons and greater choice of layouts and more customization.

20.00 a year - Paid accounts - remain the same

25.00 - 30.00 a year - Premium paid accounts- extra user pics, and maybe something like streaming radio, or video. Maybe some extra great looking layouts? A la carte choice of other premium features?

This is NOT complicated.

A paperback book costs more than a 6.00 or 7.00 PER YEAR subscription fee for a basic account. Heck even a kid on an allowance could afford that. And it might keep them from bringing in those (((((shudder))))) sponsored accounts. People spend more than that to see ONE movie at the theater. So I guess it boils down to how much they want their journal.
[User Picture]
From:doingsoso
Date:March 28th, 2008 07:49 am (UTC)

(cont)

(Link)
I made a great big long post about it on the announcement page, In News.

Like I told someone else. It's no skin off my nose, because I think my journal is worth paying for, and if people really want to support LiveJournal, they'd be willing to pay a few dollars. 6.00 or 7.00 a year works out to about .50 a month for heaven's sake! I know good and darned well a cup of coffee or a soda costs more than that, in fact I don't know anywhere you can buy a cup of coffee or a coke for .50 cents any more! But that .50 would go along way toward filling the coffers, with the number of members LJ has.

It would also cut down on the numbers of spam accounts and it maybe(?) it would help ensure that the real ages of the journal holders are known.

Now those numbers aren't set in stone. Maybe 6.00 or 7.00 is a little low. maybe not. I don't know how much the monthly operating costs are. But you get my meaning. And I mean everyone pays. Even the members who already have accounts. I know for a fact that there are people that have upwards of six accounts, maybe more! That's ridiculous, and expensive for LJ!

I'm not talking about communities so no one jump down my throat. I'm talking about journals that people make and then just leave them. They do something stupid, make people angry, and run off to make another account! Then they leave the old account abandoned. That's why a lot of people are screaming about the free basic account deal. They want the service, they want to be free to run around creating accounts left and right, and they don't want to pay for them. Then you have the minors that started creating accounts after the flagging system went into effect and they couldn't access certain journals and communities anymore, because their age on their first journal got them blocked from those journals and communities. I'm not making judgements here, just pointing out facts.

A fee for the basic level account would put a stop to that, and yet it wouldn't be more than a even a kid or teenager could afford. Heck even retired people on a limited income should be able to pay that little bit. The regular paid accounts and the premium paid accounts would be like icing on the cake. This way users have a choice in how much money they spend, and how much service they're willing to pay for.

This is the real world folks, and it takes money to run something the size of LJ. When LJ was created it was small enough that yeah, you could enjoy the ride for free. You wouldn't do what LJ does for free now, I can guarantee you. I know I wouldn't. You also wouldn't work for free. How would you like it, if people started screaming every time the company you work for tried to ensure that you get a paycheck every week.


I've long thought that LJ's policy on not deleting long unused journals was a mistake. There are certain journals that are kept up because the people passed away, and they are memorial journals. I understand that idea and I agree.

But there are many, many more journals that have one or two posts and they're several years old. That is a waste of space, bandwidth, and resources. They need to be purged. People create those journals to save a name, then forget about them or don't use them.

LJ should have a memorial page for listing the journals that are requested to be kept open for people who have passed away or for a few other odd and end reasons, and keep those journals up free of charge. But the personal journals with names with no posts in the last two or three years really need to be deleted. They're not being used. Why should they be a drain on LJ's resources? That is an abuse of the system because the journals were free. If they had to pay for them they'd delete them fast enough.



[User Picture]
From:dbaxdevilsfan
Date:March 28th, 2008 04:09 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Is there any reason for genocide being filtered from interest searches? One girl on my f-list is interested in the topic, and was looking for other people who have the interest, and gets the "Error: Sorry, we're unable to help you find users matching the interests you've provided." message. Not everyone looking for someone interested in that subject believes the killing of mass numbers of people is acceptable. :)

And thank you for your continued updating on the situation.
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From:turbobeholder
Date:March 28th, 2008 09:28 pm (UTC)
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Not everyone looking for someone interested in that subject believes the killing of mass numbers of people is acceptable. :)
Do you really think SUPpers are too silly to understand this on their own ?
And if they don't think people search for "genocide" just want some manual to plan one better, or whatever, but they still filtered it, conclusion is ..?
From:ex_thirteent619
Date:May 17th, 2008 01:35 pm (UTC)
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I deleted my blog because, unfortunately, its existence has become known to my family and a handful of friends. I'm now uncomfortable speaking freely there ... recently had my mother get very bitter with me over something I said in it, sigh ... and decided to start a new blog but not do anything stupid like posting my real name in it.

Thats how I learned about the basic account change ... Ive been on LJ since 1999 (under 2 names now) and would have said a few years ago that I supported the old LJ entity enough to pay for a regular account. I don't trust the current incarnation of the company and I just wonder who's going to own the company NEXT year and what THEY'RE going to do to incite the next mass exodus. I donate money to Craigslist. I pay for shareware I find useful. I can support a company whose ideology resonates well with me, so well, that I want to support them even if its not mandatory. But once its become compulsory .. once its strictly about revenue .. it has a different feeling associated with it. The profit-driven incarnation of Livejournal will never overcome that objection with the approach theyre pursuing.

Ads are a nuisance, I dont want them on my blog. And so I decided to not create ad-sponsored journal here -- but I am certain to return if basic accounts come back into existence.... if by then im not already too personally invested in whatever alternative I choose now.

By the way, read about myspace lately? Theyre finding that their userbase overwhelmingly ignores the ads and are almost immune to them now. Anyone in the know, knows that their ad campaign wont deliver what theyre hoping for. Dont envy or emulate their model, hopefully you can observe this catching up with them and not living up to its expectations ... and learn from it ... before you experience the same results.

I dont really want to use wordpress or google blogs or whatever... i like the interface and community here .. but this will drive me to use another platform. I'll see you again when they make the right decision ..

-RG

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