> "Wound Up" <email@example.com> wrote in message
>>>In article <4Pjxf.907$MW4.firstname.lastname@example.org>, John
>>>>The link repository is superb! I added it to my favorites! It's so
>>>>good it gave me a wild idea I wanted to pass by the group.
>>>>This is what I call a supposal.
>>>>Suppose we (the AHPBBFM newsgroup) contacted each business we have a
>>>>link to, tell them about the newsgroup and the ThunderSnakes, and the
>>>>repository (and they are in it!), and ask them to put a link to a
>>>>document that tells folks who we are, how to check us out, etc. A
>>>>"you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours" kind of thing. This
>>>>document would have links to the rules and the link repository. "The
>>>>deal" for them will be that, eventually, car enthusiasts will be
>>>>directed to our site from hundreds of other sites, where they will see
>>>>the link to their site. Our site will act like a funnel to their
>>I am willing to put myself out there, and give it a shot. I am
>>replying to CJ's post so I can reply to both of you.
>>>>It could be trialed on a small scale first to see if it's worth the
>>>>effort, like e-mail the request to 10 or so businesses on the links
>>>>This *may* be just what we need to build up the newsgroup. Hell, I'm
>>>>excited about it!
>>>>Of course, we'd need a very macho, BBA icon for those guys to put on
>>>>their websites as the button to push to activate the url to this
>>How about the cammer pic I just posted (thanks Stu) with stuff added to
>>or around it?
> Where's the link page at anyway? I tried the favorites I stored, but it's
The main page is now at http://tinyurl.com/9yulk
>>>>Give me your honest opinion everybody! If you don't like it, how can
>>>>improve it. I'd love to hear from the lurkers too!
>>>>Talk it up. Do we do it or drop it?
>>As you might expect, I believe we need to do something. Let's have
>>some opinions or suggestions, folks, on the contacting businesses /
>>co-op advertising idea. I believe this could really work. It could
>>bring spammers, but there is a trade-off to everything.
>>> The first thing you would have to do is write the page that directs
>>>others here. There are two ways to do it. The first and easiest is to
>>>point at Google groups.
>>The very first thing is for me to put META tags in the page, but I
>>agree, using Google as a primary starting point is probably best.
>>Again, spammers and trolls are part of the trade-off for active
>>participation. IF we keep ourselves committed to the rules, they will
>>find an unwelcome place here. If it gets big enough, we will need a
>>moderator. All this has been done, of course.
>>The number of people hip to newsreaders is
>>>still very small, which is why the Web forums have become so popular.
>>>The second is more work but better in the long run. That would be to
>>>put up an actual site (AHPBBFM.com for example) that runs a script to
>>>interface this newsgroup. This would be like autoforumz or such. In the
>>>beginning, I tried to do this but those scripts were not to be found,
>>>and Google had the only one. Now, there are several around.
>>Big step #1. Do-able, but not free, and it will take a heck of a lot
>>more time than I've already spent (re-learning stuff, true) putting up
>>these silly HTML pages a savvy 5th grader would laugh at.
> If we were going to put up a web site, I wouldn't make it just about HPBBFM.
> It'd be a one-stop-shop for everything with a internal combustion engine,
> then within the website you could select what interests you or go to "The
> Pub" area and talk shit with whoever wanted to talk. Oops, I just let out
> the long range plan!
That's a great idea, a portal site...
>>> Although a newsreader interface is far better than a Web forum prog,
>>>the one thing that is currently hamstringing us in comparison is the
>>>ability to post pictures. As more people move away from dialup, pics
>>>become less of a hassle. And, they add a needed dimension. If a site
>>>went up, there would have to be sufficient bandwidth and storage to
>>>host pictures, and there would have to be a method (read: admin) to
>>>limit uploads to on-topic stuff. This costs money. The alternative is
>>>to form a companion binary group to link to. This takes effort and time
>>>to spread throughout the system. Or we might take over a dead binary
>>>group for our own use.
>>I like the use-what's-there approach of a dead binary group. The
>>purchase and maintenance of all this stuff is Giant Leap #1. I think
>>if we got an interface going, as previously discussed a few times, that
>>would be a decent trial combined with co-op advertising.
>>The thing about co-op advertising is that there must BE interest for
>>people to want to bother. We have a small number of hits. We must
>>leverage this as much as we can, and build from there. No capital
>>expenditures yet. And the other problem with sane people and
>>businesspeople (even auto shops =) is coming up....
>>> The biggest weakness in Usenet is the lack of moderation. There are
>>>too many people out there suffering from a range of emotional and
>>>psychological problems who have nothing else to do but play games.
>>>We've all seen this here and elsewhere, and it has been a major
>>>contributor to the downturn of participation. The core group really has
>>>to pull together to deal with this if we actually could increase
>>Very true, but BBA presumes the ability to deal with this. What we
>>want to do is build a like-minded community. I don't see this property
>>of Usenet as necessarily damning, especially since it's on the outs
>>more or less. The scripting and web interface takes us out of the
>>outs, and the ads and support make further steps possible in the
>>> Anyway, in the past I've had little support from others when it came
>>>to doing legwork. so, other than offering opinions, I'm not going to
>>>expend any more effort. I no longer "run" this group, so its up to
>>>whoever to keep it from disappearing altogether.
>>This cannot be a one-man show, whether is be you, me, or anyone else.
>>If you and some of the others with the real meaty BB knowledge just
>>stuck around and participated more through a transition like this, it
>>would be plenty effort. Many hands make light the load.
>>I would take the lead on the tech. side and put my own sweat in to
>>learn and grow my tech skills. It would be my living project to mess
>>around with development more.
>>Maybe someone else could take the lead on the promotion side. I have
>>zero experience in promotion or advertising. I don't know who does. I
>>do know that half the battle is getting someone to listen to you for
>>that first 10 seconds, or to read the first two or three sentences of
>>something written, especially on the net.
>>Let's talk some more about this. Committee members, what do you think?
>>I definitely tend toward pessimism, but think, everyone - you enjoy
>>this, or you wouldn't be here. Maybe you don't any more, so that's why
>>It could be better than it ever was. We just need the right formula,
>>and like John, I think we have a good number of the right ingredients
>>already. As CJ said, the most important is enthusiasm. It's what
>>makes you turn wrenches, and it's what's making me contribute what I
>>can. You guys have the knowledge, and some of you have vested
>>interests. You just have to re-frame this group mentally, and think of
> What's the minimum size we need to start-up a website? I've got 20 MB of
> free web space I'm not using.
The site I just got for this group is 500. I'm currently using 8, and
most of that is gobbledygook.
But these things mushroom. I have been in many a design meeting where
"reporting tool" becomes "panacea". Pretty soon you're talking about
what back end to use, escalation procedures if it goes down, who gets
what access rights and why, etc. I worked designing systems for several
years, and am getting back into it. I could still definitely be called
a rookie but I do know how to do it. My coding and database skills are
basic, but will be used more, and are coming back to me more every day
(at work). As I mentioned, this would be good practice and learning for
me, so long as I didn't burn out on it - life's about to get really
"exciting" with my promotion. And I have a few friends who can animate
dead tissue with code.
A good thing to do is set very defined short-term goals, and do small
releases, instead of one huge whomping deal. It's not only more
manageable, but successes build on themselves... I know it's not the
most novel idea, but I have seen both approaches, and while long-term
vision is essential, taking a few steps at a time and making it "stable"
is very important. I guess what I have to first is get this page
tightened up and make it slicker. I want to stay away from Flash and
all that jazz because some people still do use dialup (or have no
choice) and I dislike the presumption many web developers make that
their number is insignificant. That is a very critical decision, if you
ask me, and all too often it's made in haste and with arrogance (at a
couple hundred an hour, no less).
I think what we need to do is build out what we're doing now, and also
plan for what we want to do next... it'll take some time, but there's
just nothing terribly unknown or impossible about this type of thing...
so in the short term, I'll get my framed links page up, and clean things
up.... get a real design theme going... etc. Then we can start talking
about interfaces, the logical next step. We must continue to refine the
long-term vision of a portal (excellent in my opinion) and what elements
it will have...
Sound like a good start? Anyone else, please throw in your ten cents...
AHPBBFM pages: http://tinyurl.com/9yulk