When I bought my first BYOND membership in early 2006 I was happy to help financially support BYOND in that small way. But after I had made a few blog posts where I had the audacity to express my opinion on certain things (guilds and front page things that subsequently got scrapped/fixed :P), I noticed that the members page was only serving to roll out a welcome wagon for trolls.

There was never a worse time in the history of BYOND to be a member of the community than in 2005-2007. People were absolute monsters on here. Things reached a head for me on September 11, 2006 when there were a few posts on the front page making fun of the people that died on the planes that went down in 2001.

I made a post saying that we shouldn't be disrespectful towards people who died in a really horrible way, and I got endlessly trolled for it. People even offensively photoshopped real pictures of me and were able to put those posts on the front page as well.

I called for front page moderation, and all I got in response was a "People can post whatever they want since they paid for a membership." It's all well and good that front page moderation is in place today. But it should have started right there and then. Instead it didn't happen for years after that. Freaking ridiculous.

I demanded a refund from Tom at that point for the membership that I had bought in advance, and got it. I didn't show my face on BYOND again after that until 2009 when NEStalgia was in alpha. Since then I haven't really had the heart to blog very much either.

I feel that these blogs did nothing really except to turn BYOND into a social wasteland. For that I feel that Tom/BYOND completely deserved the mass exodus of original game developers as well as the influx of anime kiddies that has taken place.

The only reason things have been better the last couple of years is the work of Stephen001 (and other mods) for their work with front page moderation. It took the wind out of the sails of that horrible little crew of creepy obsessive/stalker trolls who came from god knows where, and did nothing but hurt the community by their incessant trolling. Most of them have now left because of that (or had their posts permanently hidden).

Anyways. That's my experience with these blogs. Hated them since 2006, and I'm glad to see them go. But they also made me so jaded against the project and Tom, that I'm not sure if I'll ever actually buy another membership again or not.

On some level, for the sake of NEStalgia, I want to see BYOND succeed. But for the most part I could care less. I also don't think that upping membership prices while taking away member features really makes sense as a business plan. But we'll see.
If I could, I'd definitely +yea this post.
Oasiscircle wrote:
If I could, I'd definitely +yea this post.

I made some mistakes, but my intentions were never bad. I hope people understand that. We simply needed to make money because the project was going to die without it, and given that we'd established a precedent of everything being free, we had to create the blogs as a necessary perk. They did help us out financially (and continue to this day), but I suppose there was a cost. Although I think that the exodus of developers is exaggerated-- that is largely a product of timing, fads, and nostalgia (IMO the best "era" for BYOND was in 2000 when we had about 100 users).

In many ways, we are at that same place today-- we still need the financial support of our users to sustain the project. But we have put a lot more thought into this iteration than in any previous ones. I hope it works out.

Also, I'm in agreement that the moderators here have been invaluable. They will be even more important in this upcoming version, since the more centralized nature of the forum should mean greater traffic. They have been given more powerful tools, accordingly, and I expect it to be much easier to keep the trolling to a minimum.

Anyway, I hope you stick around and consider supporting us down the line.
Yeah i have been on BYOND for a long time, but towards the beginning and until after 2007 i never really blogged very much, For various reasons but a lot was because it didn't seem friendly.

I am really looking forward to this update, Stephen is an amazing moderator, and he must be involved with 90%+ of the front page blog posts, I've tried to be of use to BYOND and the community, but for selfish reasons i have tended to dedicate more time to other things.

I will miss my CSS customization, seems i set a trend with that at some point lol :), but i'm secretly happy that people wont make requests for them any more lol, I hope Tom allows us to have some custom content box's still ?

Anyway :) bring on the update, keep up the good work, and i guess i'll be here for quite a long time specially since my game is going well :)
Well I'm glad at least that we were able to make the experience a little more palatable for you and others.

On the downside (or good, depending on who you are I suppose), our moderation logs will be much more public. Cue me having to be more professional with my moderation reasons than "I think this one was dropped as a baby".
Tom wrote:
I made some mistakes, but my intentions were never bad. I hope people understand that.

I've been wanting to make a post addressing that stuff for the last few years or so but I always figure "meh I really don't care that much anymore."

Although I mean everything I said I think my post comes off a little bit more bitter and personally upset with you than I actually am.

I just figure that since it's apparently the last day of the blogs and I still have a week or so left on this membership, it might be cathartic to express the distaste I've had for them since all that drama went down for me in back in '06.
Meh. I bought the blog after seeing how well NEStalgia did on its launch day. I figured that if I bought a blog and promoted the game I was making at the time, I'd get a lot of attention and feedback. Boy was I wrong. You know something is wrong with the community when your development posts get like 2 responses, but your senseless blabbering gets 70 or 80 comments.

Even with the site update, it's going to take a lot of time to get BYOND where it needs to be. Losing blogs takes away another reason for the retards who never had any intention of developing anything in the first place to come here. The more BYOND becomes a site that caters more to developers, and not just any random kid who happens to like fan-games, the better things will be for everyone.
Jared, it's so out of character for you to be super bitter over something that happened a long time ago!

That said, you're totally right about the insane level of abuse that we were receiving. Back in '06 and '07 BYONDers were even stalking and harassing my wife-to-be on Facebook. She barely even knew what BYOND was back then!

It may not seem like much, but the policy/culture change in the moderation staff made a huge difference around here. Nipping all of that hate in the bud before it gets a chance to grow out of control is key to the success of any online community.

People still occasionally do weird obsessive stuff nowadays, but thankfully it's all targeted at NEStalgia instead of us personally. That BYONDer Techgamer pretends to be a NEStalgia player and writes a lot of strange stuff about the game on other websites. We also had plenty of hilarious "attacks" by anime kiddies last spring. Overall, however, BYOND is no longer a community that feels borderline dangerous to be a part of.