GrumpyOne Posted March 18 Share Posted March 18 As some of you may have noticed, there are now some banner ads from outside vendors on the forum. A little backstory on this development. Over the years, when Brian had his Dillon dealership and was running the forum, he paid for the forum from that Dillon dealership. When he retired from that dealership, he paid for the forum from his own pocket, using his own money and dealer forum monies collected each year. The forums have never made money, they have only ever been an expense. Last year, when Brian decided to retire completely, he was going to shut the forums off, completely. No information would have been saved, unless a member had downloaded information from the forum to their personal device. Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, would have been lost. Like it had never existed. The forum is cloud based storage, not an actual hard drive sitting in someone's home, so if it gets shut down, I assume that the hosting company will keep said data for a time, but after that time, I'm pretty sure it gets deleted. We (the moderator and admin group) were somewhat dismayed by the thought of the forum and all of that knowledge just disappearing. We knew that the members would feel the same. We asked Brian if we could take it over, which he graciously agreed to, as long as he had or has no involvement with it, other than to maybe post something whenever he feels like it. That set in motion certain events. This left us with getting the forums moved over to new hosting accounts, changing payment methods, opening new accounts to deposit monies in, etc. Doing all of this behind the scenes, keeping the forum running without skipping a beat. Let's just say that it was somewhat stressful to us, juggling all of this at one time. We took over the forum in late June of '22. At that time, we had $0 available to us to pay forum hosting cost. We needed at least 3 months of hosting cost (at $330 per month) before we could even hope to count on the dealer vendor monies coming it to help pay for the forum. The moderators and admins ponied up, and we were able to scrape by those 3 months, until we could get some cash flow from the dealer forums. Even with the dealer forum monies, we were still short quite a bit for the yearly hosting cost. The annual hosting cost is currently $3960 per year, and likely to go up substantially in the next year or so, due to forum size and inflation. Forum donations help, but they are not frequent enough nor large enough to actually count on towards paying the hosting costs. We needed to find a way to help pay for the forum that wouldn't put any of us in the hole and would be (hopefully) be a constant source of income for the forum. So, we sold some ad space on the forum. We encourage all members to view these ads and visit the advertiser, and our dealer forum vendors. We have tried to find advertisers to fit in with the forum, to help them and us. These advertisers and forum dealers are really our lifeblood right now, without them, the forum would most likely have to be shut down in the near future. This is, in no way, a money making venture. Our goal is to pay for the forum, without anyone having to come out of pocket, and to have a small slush fund in case some of the forum dealers do not renew their forums. We wanted to keep the forums as close as possible to what Brian created, but some changes had to be made. Without the ads, we would not be able to keep the forum running, and would be forced to shut it down. Even with the ads, we still need donations to help keep it running. Thank you, Brian Enos Forums Administrators and Moderators Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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