November 9, 2017 at 10:22 am #36147
As of today, the All Freelance Writing forum is closed to new topics and replies.
This decision wasn’t an easy one. I’ve been going back-and-forth on it for quite some time.
After the latest redesign, the plan was to start properly promoting the forum again, now that the developer involved solved some problems we were having with users being able to register and login here. Those issues have long since been sorted out, but the forum is still not something I’ve brought myself to prioritize.
And I don’t see that changing.
My business plan and goals have changed a lot over these past couple of years, and my own priority is rebuilding my network of blogs, of which All Freelance Writing has always played an important part. But that’s what I want to focus on in the New Year — blogging and giving you the resources you need to run a more successful and sustainable freelance writing business. Managing a forum doesn’t fit into that plan as of now. I’ve run several successful ones before, including a former forum in this niche. I’ve also moderated a very large community for years. And it’s simply not the way I feel my time is best spent helping freelancers. And while I could bring in third party moderators to deal with things like spam, I still have to manage the technical end. And frankly, the forum platform has caused more compatibility issues with other key aspects of this site than just about anything else. It becomes a time drain for me with very little benefit for you.
So what’s going to happen to all of the content already in the forum?
Well, for now, it’s going to stay where it is. No new threads or replies can be created. But the forum archives are still publicly visible.
Over the next few months I’ll be converting key conversations here into blog posts (where responses will appear as comments). So if you’ve commented on the forums, that content will not generally be lost.
For threads started by someone other than myself, things get a bit trickier. Some will be removed (if someone posted just to share a resource or something like that). But most will also still stay. If someone posted a question, in most cases those threads will be reformatted into Reader Q&A posts on the blog, just as if they’d sent the question in via email. I’ll write up a new intro, and their question and my response will go in the post, Any follow-up replies would appear as comments. If another user’s post would be a better fit for the guest post format, that’s another option, and again replies will be preserved as comments (though this type of change will be much rarer, if it happens at all).
Old news updates will probably be removed as they have no real relevance anymore (such as announcements of downtime for maintenance). They were published here specifically to keep them off the blog, so there’s no reason to keep them at all after the change.
Will all of these posts suddenly show up in your email or feeds?
They won’t. (Or at least they shouldn’t.)
When I move the forum content to the blog, it won’t all be published as new material. It will be back-dated so it appears in the archives on the same date the content appeared in the forum. The same is true for replies and comments.
There may be exceptions where I re-work a forum thread into a better post and I update its date when posting to the blog. In those cases, the original publication date will be noted in the blog post. And these will not be released at any greater frequency than normal blog posts (which will get back to a regular schedule of several posts per week in the New Year).
While the forum closure won’t affect most All Freelance Writing members, I apologize to those who it does affect. My hope is this will give me one less thing to worry about here so I can keep my attention on creating new content and resources (which I’ve been stockpiling for the New Year’s planned regular return, so there’s a lot to come).
Another reason I’m consolidating some things here is that I’ll be launching two spin-off sites in the New Year — one specifically about blogging as a business (both your own blogs and freelance blogging) and another on marketing advice for more established freelance writers who are beyond the “get started” phase often covered here.
The only other potential scaling back at All Freelance Writing might be the podcast. If you used to follow it, you’ll know I haven’t posted a new episode in quite some time. Again I’ve been torn on whether or not to continue. It may be discontinued, though the archives will stay or be converted to posts archives as well. Or I may simply change the podcast format (it’s been on hold because I have to change its branding after the site’s All Indie Writers > All Freelance Writing move). That may mean fewer episodes, but long in-depth chats. Or it may mean more frequent, but much shorter, episodes that are quicker to produce. There will definitely be podcasts on the newer site for more experienced freelancers. They’ll be 10-minute episodes with guests appearing for 4-episode series. So freelance writing podcasts won’t be going away entirely. They may just move or change a bit. But more on that later.
If you’re subscribed to the All Freelance Writing newsletter, you may receive a link to a survey between now and early December asking for your feedback on these and other upcoming changes here, so you’ll have a chance to weigh in.
The forum ‘News and Announcements’ is closed to new topics and replies.