posted on Jan, 7 2014 @ 02:19 PM
One of the reasons for this, I think, is "Topic creep." People seem not content with ATS as a conspiracy site with interests in UFOs, the
paranormal, and the like. Today we have a serious thread asking for an "animal topic" because, you know, people like animals. The justification for
this is that not everything needs to be serious and sometimes a light topic is appropriate. Note, for example, the "post a funny picture" thread
which is now in its second iteration and extremely popular.
As OP stated, ATS has also become a repository for everything else on Drudge, Fox, or CNN. As soon as there is an article there, it shows up here as
"breaking news," often 4 or 5 posts worth. In other words, there is a tendency for members to increase the breadth of coverage. But adding water to
soup, i.e.: Bringing in additional content that is largely irrelevant to the original purpose of the site, weakens it and brings about the lament of
the OP. It's difficult to find the good stuff in the midst of the trivia.
It used to be, for example, that ATS was THE place to come for UFO material. It is why I originally joined 7 years ago. Now there are still a few
posts on the topic, but they are few and far between, and they are buried behind all the other posts on everything from cooking recipes to repetitious
news stories we can get anywhere. In other words, ATS has lost its focus. It is now a site about "everything" and not particularly good or cutting
edge about "anything."
This begs the question of why this is happening. Is it because a wider audience has been attracted that simply wants a more diverse content? Or is it
ATS drifting toward the average IQ of people who aren't particularly interested in anything but light entertainment? Page views and click throughs
equals enhanced revenue, so there is a tendency to increase these to keep the site viable, but one wonders what he threshold is when ATS becomes just
another MSM site with nothing particular to recommend it to people who are genuinely interested in exploring alternative subjects in depth? After all,
Drudge has UFO stories, just like the LA Times. What is ATS bringing to the equation? For every Isaac Koi there are dozens of people extolling the
virtues of Greer, Bassett, and Billy Meiers, who rail against those who point out these folks have been toast for years.
It's a thankless job and I do not know the answer to it. If you look at the statistics, you see that those actually participating in the site are a
small fraction of the so-called "membership." Only 55% of members have bothered to post, and the vast majority of them have posted less than 20
times (100K out of 160K), meaning they are not full participants. My goodness, if you look at how many people have posted more than 500 times, i.e.:
at least somewhat active participants, it's about 2% of the total membership. It's one thing to brag about nearly 300,000 member accounts, but most
of these people have been drive-by lookee-lus, never to be seen again.
So there you have it. ATS is vastly smaller than it looks, with an active participation base of 2% or less, and it is suffering from dilution as
people think of more and more ways to weaken the presentation. So you want a forum on animals? OK, and how, exactly, does that deny ignorance?