posted on Mar, 18 2014 @ 12:58 PM
So with that logic [one should eliminate]
Food and Cooking, Relationships, Jokes Puns & Pranks, Travel, Automotive Discussion, Music, Video Games, Comics, Television, General Entertainment,
Movies, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Member Art, World Sports, U.S. Sports, Website
It would be logical to get rid of those you listed. Although with the new format change you can't get statistics separated out quite as well any
more, the former "Below Top Secret" categories tend toward the bottom of the barrel when you count activity. Under the 80/20 rule where 80% of your
traffic is in 20% of your forums and 20% of your traffic is in 80% of your forums, the BTS stuff doesn't even count.
Why is this important? Because just like companies, sites that do well are well-focused on their theme. They don't try to be everything for everyone.
When companies are growing, they tend to acquire more companies as fast as they can assuming more revenue can be turned into more profit, but it's a
fool's game. They become unfocused trying to master the intricacies of their varying lines to the point that they flounder. A mature company in it
for the long haul focuses on what it does well. Sometimes it can be strange. 3M, for example, sells things that are flat: tape, post-it notes, disks,
etc. When they expanded into software development, they nearly went bankrupt.
One of the things I have seen in the last 7 years I've been here is that ATS is in danger of losing its focus. There are a lot more people here, but
the overall quality of discourse has gone down. The "signal to noise" ratio is larger. Management of the site has grown more difficult. The owners
have tried simplifying it. Compared to 7 years ago the overall structure is MUCH different and simpler. I'm all for simplicity, but this was done as
a response to growth and, IMO, has lost something in translation (fodder for another thread).
What I suspect has happened is that the first few requests for topics were implemented without management realizing they would eventually be asked for
every single topic in the dictionary. It's gotten out of hand. Growth for growth's sake is not always good. I believe ATS ought to focus and excel
on what it does well and not attempt to be all things to all people and, as a result, do everything in a mediocre manner. How much does Springer know
about pets? Do you think management ought to have at least a passing interest in the subjects being discussed? Trying to add anything anyone thinks of
has a diluting effect.
If you want to talk about pets, go to a pet site. Rather than add forums on a conspiracy/alternative site that have nothing to do with conspiracies,
ATS should consider consolidating, removing its low-traffic forums, and returning to the subjects it was started for in the first place.