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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Watson on March 26th, 2018, 5:52 pm 

Well Ken I hope you are right about all the optimism.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Braininvat on March 26th, 2018, 6:39 pm 

I went to Godaddy.com, which is the web host for SPCF. The present price they list for this domain name, to buy it, is $70, and then $12 per month. They forward your offer to the present owner and negotiate the final price. I would gladly have purchased it, if that pricing is correct. And you would have had a site with no targeted ads or anything else. Which might grow the site in a positive way that appeals to scholars and professionals and intellectuals who don't care much about finding Ukrainian girlfriends or ads generally*. Never did understand the "targeting" there.

In any event, if site traffic picks up, I am available to mod or admin again.

Lomax, if you are around, and its okay with the PTB, you can switch my permissions back to last year's. That would at least spread the spam cleanup around a little bit, which Z is mostly doing these days.

* or maybe they do secretly yearn for young devochkas and I've misjudged?
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Watson on March 26th, 2018, 6:50 pm 

I thought it was phpBB. I doubt this new guy is interested in making $70
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Lomax on March 26th, 2018, 7:09 pm 

I'm clearly behind the times here, because I don't understand the "Re" in the first post. Did Watson buy the site?

Braininvat » March 26th, 2018, 11:39 pm wrote:Lomax, if you are around, and its okay with the PTB, you can switch my permissions back to last year's. That would at least spread the spam cleanup around a little bit, which Z is mostly doing these days.

* or maybe they do secretly yearn for young devochkas and I've misjudged?


I'll gladly sort it out tomorrow. And I'm not one to look a devotchka in the mouth. Or is it beware of devotchkas baring gifts?
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Braininvat on March 26th, 2018, 7:13 pm 

You're on page two, Lomax. All will be answered by perusing page one.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby zetreque on March 26th, 2018, 7:14 pm 

This is confirmed. Thanks Ken. BioWizard will be posting at some point.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby wolfhnd on March 26th, 2018, 7:20 pm 

Best of luck to the new owner
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Lomax on March 26th, 2018, 7:24 pm 

Guys, don't panic. Due to time constraints Biowizard has been looking for some time for somebody to buy and develop the site. Bio is proud of this site and respects its community and took time and care in choosing his successor. He's not throwing it away.

With that in mind: welcome, theeighth. It's good to see that you're liaising with the community before making changes.

Braininvat » March 27th, 2018, 12:13 am wrote:You're on page two, Lomax. All will be answered by perusing page one.

Ah, durr. And what is a "page"?
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Watson on March 26th, 2018, 7:32 pm 

I'm clearly behind the times here, because I don't understand the "Re" in the first post. Did Watson buy the site?


Yes I did, and I'm pleased to say it will be business as usual.................never mind I was just dozing off.


How ever this shakes out, Ted, really bad intro.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby BadgerJelly on March 26th, 2018, 9:12 pm 

I honestly thought this site was about to die off.

Good luck.

tbh I don't quite understand what can be done to "attract" more people other than reaching out to universities for participants.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Forest_Dump on March 27th, 2018, 6:37 am 

I would agree that this site has been a bit slow of late but that is the way things go sometimes and there have certainly been some big changes since day 1. (And there is an evolution metaphor or two in all of this). To Bio, I would say thanks for all you have done over the years since the Evolution Chat Forum days on Yahoo Groups (does that even still exist?) I can't even remember what year that was but it was probably more than 20 years ago. I do hope he (Bio) keeps returning and gets into the odd scrap as time permits. As for me, I will probably continue to monitor as time permits and see how things evolve. Maybe a bright and interesting future. Maybe the fast or slow drift into fossilization. Only time will tell.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby ronjanec on March 27th, 2018, 8:38 am 

I also thought the site was about to die off. Good luck Ted, and I hope you can turn things around here again.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Forest_Dump on March 27th, 2018, 9:14 am 

I am not so sure the site was in any danger of a die off but it has been relatively quiet. It does sometimes seem that without some creationists or IDers or even some home school anti-relativists, things get pretty quiet. It does seem to take some fur flying and a bit of bloodshed to get traffic numbers up. The most active threads now are fairly predictable Trump-bashing with former Trump supporters no longer around much. For example, ronjanec, I have been assuming you haven't been around because you have been too busy with one of those jobs Trump was bringing back to the US.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby ronjanec on March 27th, 2018, 9:48 am 

Actually Forest, I have not posted for quite awhile because I was getting very few responses on my philosophical posts, and I also felt that I was getting people way too upset and angry with my political posts.
Last edited by ronjanec on March 27th, 2018, 9:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Braininvat on March 27th, 2018, 9:54 am 

The political chats have pulled the site away from its main focus, so there might be something to be said for archiving politics and a lot of the news threads, and just have a science news forum with stories either about new research or mainstream stories that relate in some way to STEM fields. The scientific efforts to find the missing Malaysian flight would be an example of the latter. I appreciated Toucana's coverage of that story. Also, a stronger science news focus might pull in fresh activity on the issues raised by breaking developments - green tech, bioethics, the philosophical and ethical ramifications of artificial intelligence, population biology, genetic engineering, "fringe" science, etc. The key, for Ted and the moderators, would be to enforce guidelines that foster intelligent and informed discourse, rather than twitter twits just driving by.

Good luck, Ted.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Braininvat on March 27th, 2018, 10:04 am 

Admin1

BTW, now that we have some calm and constructive feedback going, it would be good to hear from you again.

And I would hope that BioWizard would also have some input today. Though you and he have had fruitful discussions, I am sure, it would be nice to get his ideas and hopes out where the rest of us can consider them.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Watson on March 27th, 2018, 10:05 am 

Agreed. It has become more a social site and less a dedicated science site. Moving back in that direction would be good. Just driving traffic to the site would have the opposite effect, I would think.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby BadgerJelly on March 27th, 2018, 10:32 am 

The loss of two prominent members over the past year or two has certainly been felt by me.

That darn Grimreaper! :(

Given the pattern of social media lately maybe we'll start to see a resurge of interest in dedicated sites like this (we can but dream?)

I do wonder ... would harassing universities (students and lecturers) help at all? Having someone who is teaching/studying about a specific topic may be an interesting "Question of the month" thingy?
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Forest_Dump on March 27th, 2018, 10:41 am 

Out of curiosity, which two? I know of Marshall but seem to have slipped on others. I was actually thinking about who we have lost one way or the other over the years.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Lincoln on March 27th, 2018, 10:43 am 

For whatever it's worth, the reason I disengaged from SCF was the low traffic. While many of the people who were here when I was active (now several years ago) are/were fantastic, it appeared to be just a few dozen people talking to one another. Since my thing is science outreach, I turned my attention to venues with more eyeballs.

If the new owner can improve traffic while avoiding some of the pitfalls of many science chat sites, all the better. If it fails, well then it was becoming moribund already.

From a site point of view, I see this is as more of a potential upside than downside.

Just a reaction from a long-inactive individual.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby zetreque on March 27th, 2018, 10:48 am 

Braininvat » Tue Mar 27, 2018 6:54 am wrote:The political chats have pulled the site away from its main focus, so there might be something to be said for archiving politics and a lot of the news threads, and just have a science news forum with stories either about new research or mainstream stories that relate in some way to STEM fields. The scientific efforts to find the missing Malaysian flight would be an example of the latter. I appreciated Toucana's coverage of that story. Also, a stronger science news focus might pull in fresh activity on the issues raised by breaking developments - green tech, bioethics, the philosophical and ethical ramifications of artificial intelligence, population biology, genetic engineering, "fringe" science, etc. The key, for Ted and the moderators, would be to enforce guidelines that foster intelligent and informed discourse, rather than twitter twits just driving by.

Good luck, Ted.


I have started more than one post in the moderator section about this. IMO politics has been a significant factor in the slow down of this website. I strongly suggest abandoning that section and eliminating it from the news section as well. If people absolutely must have politics mixed with science it should be a hidden or separate section from the "what's new." section. I think there is a significant chance that politics chased away a vital segment of the forum population that made for a more dynamic and active forum. Also if we are to continue politics on this forum we need a dedicated non-partisan moderator for it.

I also suggest starting a new thread or multiple threads or even a new section for site feedback if you really are going to change this site around a lot.

I also would really like to see the avatars fixed top priority.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby BadgerJelly on March 27th, 2018, 10:52 am 

Forest_Dump » March 27th, 2018, 10:41 pm wrote:Out of curiosity, which two? I know of Marshall but seem to have slipped on others. I was actually thinking about who we have lost one way or the other over the years.


I was thinking specifically of Marshall and Owleye. I miss owleye the most, because I have been more involved in the philosophy side of things.

Lincoln -

The physics side has lulls, but it's easily the most active part of the forum I would say.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby BadgerJelly on March 27th, 2018, 11:00 am 

Zeq -

I have started more than one post in the moderator section about this. IMO politics has been a significant factor in the slow down of this website. I strongly suggest abandoning that section and eliminating it from the news section as well. If people absolutely must have politics mixed with science it should be a hidden or separate section from the "what's new." section. I think there is a significant chance that politics chased away a vital segment of the forum population that made for a more dynamic and active forum. Also if we are to continue politics on this forum we need a dedicated non-partisan moderator for it.


If that happens I'll be gone in a shot.

Social sciences and political theory are worthy things to talk about. The problem recently has been too much attention to news stories and too little attention to actual political theory and discussion.

I have said before that some of the posts and thread made here over the past year wouldn't have been allowed a couple of years ago - or they'd have been directed toward more constructive discourse at least.

Compared to some other sites this one hasn't gone too crazy when it comes to dealing politics in the current climate.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby zetreque on March 27th, 2018, 11:04 am 

The only way this forum can have a politics section is if it has a strong moderator for it who can mediate and be true to facts. It also needs to be separated from the science section and what's new section. Without that it needs to stop.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby BadgerJelly on March 27th, 2018, 11:10 am 

zetreque » March 27th, 2018, 11:04 pm wrote:The only way this forum can have a politics section is if it has a strong moderator for it who can mediate and be true to facts. It also needs to be separated from the science section and what's new section. Without that it needs to stop.


It already is. It is in the philosophy side of the forum.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby zetreque on March 27th, 2018, 11:13 am 

BadgerJelly » Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:10 am wrote:
zetreque » March 27th, 2018, 11:04 pm wrote:The only way this forum can have a politics section is if it has a strong moderator for it who can mediate and be true to facts. It also needs to be separated from the science section and what's new section. Without that it needs to stop.


It already is. It is in the philosophy side of the forum.


Can we also please fix the notification system? I am getting double and triple email notifications for posts There are issues that normally we would report to the moderator section or feedback section but right now it's all out in the open here in one train-wreck thread without any responses from the admins that can fix it. I have already voiced things in the moderator section that have gone ignored and this is becoming frustrating.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Lomax on March 27th, 2018, 11:29 am 

I'd caution against being too pessimistic about the politics forum. Beside the fact it generates nearly half the site's content, it has slightly shifted back toward theory since we renamed it and updated the guidelines. Some of the partisan bickering simply migrated to the News Discussion forum. I think we can press harder to emphasise that political theory is philosophy while political campaigning is not; and those of us bored of everything being about Trump are free to do our bit by starting threads about what we want to discuss. Appointing somebody the Referee Of Truth is damaging for what I hope are obvious reasons.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby zetreque on March 27th, 2018, 11:40 am 

It's true politics has brought more to the forum and I think it's an immensely important topic for people to be able to discuss but I think it has also chased away many. There are ways to go about doing it to protect the forum for growth since that's what they want. The new owner needs to take a long hard look at what direction he wants to take this forum and how it will affect the user base. And again, There needs to be a moderator for it. As long as we are forced into being totally public and transparent here, I have been the only moderator taking care of reports and spam for two months and this whole transition happens without even asking me for an update or fixing things like the avatars and now notification system that crashed during this transition that someone moderating the forum regularly can notice. Hence my frustration right now.
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Braininvat on March 27th, 2018, 12:04 pm 

zetreque » March 27th, 2018, 8:40 am wrote:It's true politics has brought more to the forum and I think it's an immensely important topic for people to be able to discuss but I think it has also chased away many. There are ways to go about doing it to protect the forum for growth since that's what they want. The new owner needs to take a long hard look at what direction he wants to take this forum and how it will affect the user base. And again, There needs to be a moderator for it. As long as we are forced into being totally public and transparent here, I have been the only moderator taking care of reports and spam for two months and this whole transition happens without even asking me for an update or fixing things like the avatars and now notification system that crashed during this transition that someone moderating the forum regularly can notice. Hence my frustration right now.


TO REPEAT: I mod/admin'd for 3 years. I am again volunteering to assist with reports and spam. Turn me on!

I can see both sides here on the political stuff. I think it really goes to a deeper question, which has been hanging in the air since this place decided to do both science and philosophy. To me, you have to pick one to be the dominant theme and then the other augments that. Since science was the starting theme, back in 2004, one possible approach is to have philosophy forae that support the big questions in science. Many great threads in the past 4 years have done this, looking at philosophy of science questions, the Method, the nature of consciousness and cognition, bioethics, and physics where it meets metaphysics and epistemology. So, with some artful trimming, you could do that perhaps. Forums with titles like Physics and Metaphysics, or Life Sciences and Bioethics, or Information Science and Consciousness....and yes, perhaps a Science and Politics forum? A new member, Event Horizon, started a perfect thread for that last, recently, on what sorts of policy should there be regarding military technology.

And I'm going to tag Ted again, because he should be joining this chat: Admin1
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Re: I just bought this site

Postby Lincoln on March 27th, 2018, 12:13 pm 

BadgerJelly » Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:52 am wrote:Lincoln -

The physics side has lulls, but it's easily the most active part of the forum I would say.

Perhaps. But it still has an engaged population that could fit into a decent sized conference room.

I have chatted with Bio about this over the years. It's all about goal. Some people prefer conversations with a handful of friends. Others wish to inform thousands or millions.

I really enjoyed my time here, which went on for years. But, for one who wishes to engage large audiences, it isn't the optimum online platform.

No judgment on which is better. You use a pen knife or a katana, depending on whether you want to peel an apple or fight ninjas. Match the tool to the job.

Honestly, I think that this is one of the key conversations that will be held about the future of this place. It's always about balancing volume and substance.
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