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Transparency On The Future of ATS

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posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 09:57 PM
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a reply to: SkepticOverlord



IF a coalition of members and interested parties are actively creating a legal entity and raising funds to purchase and take over ATS, we will do our best to "keep the lights on" while that is happening. But it must not be ad-hoc. Above board. Legal.


This bears repeating, among other things. It's not just about "raise money to save ATS" as many members seem to think, It's about legal transfer of ownership, because, as I understand it, ATS is not just a "website," but a legal LLC: a company, protected and protecting themselves from liability and the posts and content therein. The TC say this, from content, posts, to the DMCA, and etc.

Those legal contracts must remain, along with the technical infrastructure.



But please respect and appreciate the following: the lives of myself, Springer and Simon have changed such that our commitments preclude us from returning to focus on ATS. I've stated this over and over. Please respect it.


Hence, passing the torch.




posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:05 PM
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a reply to: Liquesence

The owners are just saying " we have no interest in ATS anymore, so unless someone buys us out, which we will make sure it's extremely difficult. Then ATS will go dark. So ATS WILL go dark. Have fun!"

There's definitely a conspiracy in this, it's pretty stupid actually lol. No efforts to buy ATS are going to work. The wording of it all is proof. But kudos to those who want to hold on to hope in the matter.

If anyone can send me a PM to an alternate "replacement site" that would be much appreciated!



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:06 PM
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a reply to: SkepticOverlord


This is sad. I’ve been a member of this site longer than most. I may be a lurker but this just doesn’t seem real to me. This is so disappointing and I’m wondering what other profit saving models have been introduced to help save ATS. Deny ignorance is this sites motto, let’s figure out a way to save ATS.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:13 PM
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a reply to: Wookiep



The owners are just saying " we have no interest in ATS anymore, so unless someone buys us out, which we will make sure it's extremely difficult. Then ATS will go dark. So ATS WILL go dark. Have fun!"


That is not what they are saying. Read their comments.

Website takes money to maintain. Advertising is not covering associated costs for reasons. They have other aspects of their lives to take care of (their business) and can't focus all their time and money on ATS. Times have changed. ATS has changed. Members have changed. Hence, "pass the torch."

Don't blame them. Without them and this site you wouldn't even be posting here.
edit on 19-6-2020 by Liquesence because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:21 PM
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a reply to: Liquesence

Money has been offered on an astounding level. From gofundme accounts to generating monthly paid subscriptions to multi- member funded ownership options.

There is no desire to keep this place going, and of course you, who thinks speech slightly right of AOC considers other opinions as "hate speech" would naturally be A-OK with this. The rest of us know what's really happening here.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:22 PM
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SO,

I laid out a detailed way forward directly, which addresses all concerns, all plans, all seriousness...and I did this earlier, on this thread. Even mapped out how it could come together, management structure and everything.

Was it not seen? Is it being intentionally ignored? What?

**starting to get frustrated now**

ETA - Link HERE
edit on 6/19/2020 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:23 PM
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a reply to: SkepticOverlord

That's fair and reasonable.

Barring a sale, do you have a date in mind when you'd turn out the lights?

That would be useful information for all members to know.

Assuming many bills are monthly, I'd guess it would be on or around June 30th?

Thanks in advance.

And most important of all - thanks for all the great years here. This has truly been my goto site for over 10 years...



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:30 PM
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originally posted by: Wookiep
a reply to: Liquesence

Money has been offered on an astounding level. From gofundme accounts to generating monthly paid subscriptions to multi- member funded ownership options.

There is no desire to keep this place going, and of course you, who thinks speech slightly right of AOC considers other opinions as "hate speech" would naturally be A-OK with this. The rest of us know what's really happening here.


The current investment team are no longer interested in maintaining this site. We buy it, or it goes fallow.
How much are you willing to pledge to keep it alive?



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:32 PM
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Well thats some serious suckage right there.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:43 PM
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I'm beginning to think there is no real appetite in preserving the ATS culture and philosophy by ATS ownership, and rather more of an interest in just making a membership buyout impossible in order to market the name and website for a quick profit.

And frankly, that's perfectly fine, but the title of this thread was "Transparency...", so if this is the case...then just say it!

There are (46) pages of members here making suggestions, pleading for information, volunteering time and effort...and most importantly money! If the bottom line idea is to find some buyer and make some big profit windfall, then that's fine, but again...just say it.

What is being proposed here is most likely not that model. It is more a model of preserving ATS for its original underpinnings. I'll speak for myself when I say, I'm not interested in making someone else rich. So, if this is the objective then just tell us...and we'll stop wasting our time. Seriously.

Nothing at all wrong with building a business and trying to sell it for a profit, don't get me wrong. But the issue characterized here in the OP was ATS was a losing proposition, not that it was some cash cow, dripping with opportunity and a prime target for a major acquisition by a major dot-com. If that's what we're talking about here, then I'm not sure I'm interested in pursuing the discussion further. Just being honest.

We're trying to propose solutions here to save ATS in its current form. And frankly, I don't think anyone here has any visions of granger about becoming a billionaire from it, I know I don't.

So, can we have an honest discussion about it? Because up until now the discussions so far have been pretty evasive.

All due respect. (intended seriously)

FCD



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:49 PM
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a reply to: Wookiep



Money has been offered on an astounding level. From gofundme accounts to generating monthly paid subscriptions to multi- member funded ownership options.


You still don't get it, even as SO explained it time and again.


here is no desire to keep this place going, and of course you, who thinks speech slightly right of AOC considers other opinions as "hate speech" would naturally be A-OK with this


And now you bring BS partisanship into it directed toward me when this is about ATS.

Maybe be part of the solution instead of the problem. You won't even listen to the owners, the ones who built this FN site, but go on about AOC and me.

FO. Good night.




edit on 19-6-2020 by Liquesence because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 10:58 PM
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I’m so sorry to hear this. This has been one of my favorite sites for awhile. I hope you can find a buyer. Best of luck to you.




posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:01 PM
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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
Was it not seen? Is it being intentionally ignored? What?
ETA - Link HERE

Not seen. This is a rapidly evolving thread... I have other time-consuming commitments.

Your proposal is 85% reasonable, and not far off what other members have been suggesting. But it appears overly complicated.

My suggestion...

1- create a 2-4 person group that has experience in business and legal matters

2- create a legal fact-finding entity

3- engage me, we'll exchange appropriate mutual NDA documents

4- you can learn additional realities and details of prior offers

5- decide if raising money is a viable business decision

6- if raising money is a decision of passion and love, I'll help you keep your eyes wide open

7- if the torch is passed, then most of what you posted comes into play


Keep it simple.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:03 PM
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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
I'm beginning to think there is no real appetite in preserving the ATS culture and philosophy by ATS ownership,

See my reply above.

I can't see every post.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:05 PM
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originally posted by: Riffrafter
Barring a sale, do you have a date in mind when you'd turn out the lights?

When I originally posted this thread, my hope was 3-4 months of longevity. Given the sudden decline in traffic from the Google unlisting of more than 1 million of our pages, it might be sooner. I can't give an informed answer until I see the actual impact on revenue.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:14 PM
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originally posted by: SkepticOverlord

originally posted by: Riffrafter
Barring a sale, do you have a date in mind when you'd turn out the lights?

When I originally posted this thread, my hope was 3-4 months of longevity. Given the sudden decline in traffic from the Google unlisting of more than 1 million of our pages, it might be sooner. I can't give an informed answer until I see the actual impact on revenue.


Thanks, amigo.

I'll probably be around until the last dog dies, so as more info becomes available, I appreciate you keeping us posted where appropriate.

Best of luck to you in your future endeavors.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:15 PM
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Hmm, has anyone discussed archival options (sorry if it's somewhere in the near 50 pages already)?

Regardless of the outcome it would be a real shame to lose so much of the content from here.



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:27 PM
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originally posted by: SkepticOverlord
It's time to face the harsh reality. This website is quickly approaching a difficult situation. Here are the facts:

For independent sites like ATS, advertising revenue has been dropping across the entire Internet for the past five years. Combined with the recent significant drop in advertising due to the economic fallout of the pandemic, and it's horrible.

The number of visitors blocking what meager revenue is available on ATS continues to climb. We're well above the broader Internet average at more than two-thirds of all visitors blocking ads and other analytics tags.

The blocking of the analytics tags artificially deflates our actual traffic and visitor statistics. Making it impossible to attract a higher-quality ad supplier. Compound that with the reality that the current political climate has made many of our freely-expressed topics "toxic," and it's double horrible. (For example, Google AdSense is not an option for us.)

There are only two options:
1) Find a suitable buyer with the resources to invest in growth.
2) Slowly fade away until revenue can't support hosting.

We don't say this lightly — especially me, who has devoted 12+ years to this endeavor.

I can imagine the long list of ideas our members will suggest. I appreciate your passion and enthusiasm. It's why I did this. However, they would all require time and resources that we don't have.

The best hope for this project's longevity in free expression is for someone with resources to pick up the torch and carry it where we currently cannot. A new torchbearer would be critically important in these times where "free expression" is under attack.


Some contextual history:

We've entertained acquisition deals from a few suitable entities over the past several months. The most recent company was a near-perfect fit. But they are also suddenly facing an uncertain financial future due to the gutting of the online advertising markets.

We cannot find a business broker specializing in websites that are willing to represent a 100% ad revenue model to their buyers (for now).

Marketplaces and auctions such as Flippa are problematic. First, for success, an upfront investment that we don't have is required. Second, confirming the intent and principles of a potential buyer is near-impossible.


What Comes Next

Soon, we will make some type of "this website for sale" indication. From there, we'll see what interest we get. Please trust me in that we will have high standards for any new owner.

The website will continue to run. In the event we begin seriously fading away, there will be a fair warning.

With a heavy heart, thank you for your participation. It's my sincere hope that a new "torchbearer" will come forward, and you all will continue your efforts unabated.



The last few days I have been reading this over and over, trying to make sure I understand the situation here.

I have not posted until this evening because I didn't want to come across as a dumbass that didn't really understand what I was reading.

I feel really sad, as a lot of ya'll do.

I feel like.... This has to be a bad dream. ATS will always be there.

Well, I come here like a lot of you do. I feel safe here, I have gotten to know many of you, and I appreciate your thoughts and comments. And I have learned to trust many of you when you make suggestions.

Such as the cooking threads. I have tried some of your suggested recipes and have loved them.

Gardening suggestions. Gotten some great advice. Thank you.

This spring I actually purchased a drone because of a thread I read here. Having so much fun with it. Thank You.

I have many other Thank you's because of ATS.

We have some very special folks here. And even through I do not participate in the discussions often, I love reading and learning about things I might have never considered learning about.

Thank you ATS. I hope that there will be a place where we all can be together again.






posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:53 PM
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originally posted by: JBurns
a reply to: MonkeyFishFrog

They have ran the site for almost 20 years and poured their heart and soul into the place. Everyone moves on eventually and its hard to tell what they have going on in their own life

I find it hard to lay blame on them when a lot of the developments have only come recently (the federalist, for instance)


SO mentioned in the original post that they saw this coming for awhile. They didn't take a proactive approach. I'm not blaming them just stating the facts. YouTubers get demonetized once and they are launching Patreons.

ATS ending will not be a bang but a whimper



posted on Jun, 19 2020 @ 11:56 PM
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a reply to: MonkeyFishFrog

If you recall... Google bought YouTube years ago.




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