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Discussion in 'Announcements and Site News' started by Joe Blow, Jun 17, 2004.

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  1. Miner

    Miner

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    Re: ASF Site Performance

    Joe and the ASF team members

    Instead of using a new thread I take the liberty to use this thread as my concern is related to ASF Site Performance and there is no IT involved on this.

    I have restarted visiting ASF site since returning to Australia after some good absence period. There are so many changes here. Many earlier posters have disappeared. Volume and frequency of threads have disproportionately reduced. It is catch 22 situation in today's internet era. On the other hand Hot Copper site which many of us probably never liked , has grown out proportionately. Not going to deiberate on this, probably with few moderators our revered Joe has been managing single handedly. As a team member I am urging all of the ASF fans to join hands and concertedly lift the site performance. Sorry if I am making any evaluation here than to remain dumb face relying on 'she will be right mate'.
    This is an open ended question from me how to lift the performance of ASF. When I look into new posts. Couple of years ago, I could see more than 100 new posts if not visited one day but now I get to see 15 to 20 new posts clicking the New Post Icon. One could argue the financial situation has changed. I am afraid no of stocks in ASX has only grown up.

    Without any fiduciary interest on ASF revenue, I do care for ASF site from where I learnt many things and some times members have coached me on few things - such as writing better posts, valuable knowledge share.

    I personally believe ASF still is a great site and it is still not too late to lift the volume of participants, posting (quality ones of course) which could drive more advertisers to sponsor the sites. At this moment it seems there are few sponsors with one advertisement site is predominant - attractive photos of girls seeking jobs in Gum Tree. I am not cynical but quality of those job advertisments are not always job advertisements . Sorry, do not want to get digress with main theme.

    Apology in advance if my post is going to hurt any one and nothing personal here and I could be jolly well wrong on my observations. As a technocrat (not a chartist) miner I am ready to help if requires.

    If I am going out of my way to seek improvements on the site to increase quality and quantity of posts - please do not hesitate to issue me an imfraction !:confused:

    Regards
     
  2. Joe Blow

    Joe Blow Administrator Staff Member

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    Hi Miner,

    I have taken the liberty of moving your post over to this thread.

    I agree with you that ASF could use more posts, especially in stock threads. On a number of occasions I have asked the ASF community to make a conscious effort to increase the amount of stock market related posts that they make, but irrespective of how often I mention it, it never seems to materialise.

    Some people are turned off by the amount of posts in the General Chat forum. A number of long term members have stopped posting entirely because there is more discussion about religion and politics than stocks and investment/trading. It's sad, because we are slowly losing the very people who wish to chat about the stock market due to the overwhelming dominance of the General Chat forum at ASF.

    Unfortunately, I can't make people post in stock threads. Every single day I wake up hoping that more people will post on stock market related topics, particularly threads on individual stocks. However, it seems that most people who visit ASF are not interested in discussing stocks, as odd as that may sound. This is an endless source of frustration to me because it turns off new visitors, many of whom decide that there just isn't enough stock chat here to justify registering and becoming a part of the community.

    Things could turn around overnight. All it would take is for every ASF member to make just one post in a stock thread each day. The amount of posts per day would increase exponentially, and ASF would once again become an active stock market forum.

    A very big thank you to all of those who do regularly post in stock threads. Without you, ASF would probably cease to exist entirely.
     
  3. Julia

    Julia In Memoriam

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    Thanks to Miner for being brave enough to express what he has observed. I think most of us long term members would echo what he says.
    It is what it is, Joe. People get fed up with having their approach ridiculed, or simply ignored. That is the right of other members. Some people have been magnificent in their determined posting in the stock threads.
    But if no one else is interested in these (often penny) stocks, then it's just reality that there will be minimal response.

    Just as an example I only choose stocks from the top 100. It seems few others do likewise. So no point in my commenting on them to a non-existent audience.

    Why is this a problem? There is a clear option for people logging on not to even see General Chat threads displayed. I can't see that that is the cause of any problem in itself.

    I don't believe it's peculiar to ASF to have a dominance of posts on general topics rather than specific stock threads. We seem to be discussing the other very popular forum here, though apparently it's not on to mention its name.

    They have dozens of general topics, new ones every day. Momentum builds further momentum. Moderation seems to be on the ball and out of line posts are quickly removed and the poster admonished.

    The major difference I observe, fwiw, is that politically partisan posts and what would be considered racist here are tolerated over there. I make no comment about whether that's good or bad.

    There are still some very thoughtful and constructive posters on ASF, but compared to about five years ago I have to agree with Miner, far fewer than then.

    That might be right, Joe. But it would have to outweigh such as moderators making sarcastic and unexplained criticisms of posters which they subsequently refuse to justify.
    Imo this is the sort of thing which drives people away.

    (And I'm absolutely not referring to the erstwhile role of CanOz here.)

    If ASF is at risk of ceasing to exist because of lack of posting in stock threads, then surely it would be at even greater risk if no one posted in General threads either.
     
  4. Joe Blow

    Joe Blow Administrator Staff Member

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    Julia, I just hope things turn around. There is a lot of great content here and over the years ASF has become a great resource. It would be a shame for it all to just disappear one day because it lost its focus and people just slowly drifted away.

    People expect stock discussion at a stock forum, and I think we're probably missing out on a lot of good members who otherwise would have registered and joined the community had there been some more of it. That being said, I'm not about to give up just yet. Ultimately the future of ASF is in the hands of the community itself. I just steer the ship as best I can, and hope that enough people care about ASF to pitch in and assist when it's needed. Right now we need more stock discussion, so if everyone can try and post a little more in stock threads I'd appreciate it a great deal. I'm sure many others would too.

    On the topic of moderators, they are just human beings who have good and bad days like the rest of us. They all do the best they can with the time they have available, and I'm sure they are all more than happy to discuss any issues you may have via PM if you feel inclined to contact them about it.
     
  5. galumay

    galumay learner

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    Its always a problem once a specialist forum opens up discussion to subjects outside the core purpose.

    I dont know about that, I just filter all the general chat stuff out, from my perspective its overwhelmingly discussion from people who have a totally different world view to me, i dont want to read the offensive nonsense they post, I come to ASF to learn about investing and specific stocks and it remains a great resource for that.

    I am not so sure of that, its better by miles than any of the alternatives I have looked at, there is still significant on topic discussion and I have learnt an enormous amount from the members of ASF who do concentrate on posting in the stock threads.

    Dont be too hard on yourself, its a great forum and i dont know anywhere else that has the sort of discussion about specific companies.
     
  6. Smurf1976

    Smurf1976

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    A few thoughts (in no particular order).

    1. There is a definite trend away from share ownership in Australia. Comparing 2012 (latest data available) with 2004, direct share ownership has dropped from 44% to 34% of the adult population, and indirect share ownership has dropped from 32% to just 12%.

    This is from an ASX study that's here: http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&r...oaM--QjpEjls76A&bvm=bv.75097201,d.dGc&cad=rja

    So if we assume that the vast majority of people reading or contributing to ASF would own at least one share in something, or at least be interested in investing, then the underlying base from which ASF attracts members is declining.

    2. An "outsourcing mentality" is widespread across practically all fields these days and that presumably includes investing. Rather than becoming knowledgeable yourself, there's a trend to just paying someone else to do it. And if you're not going to learn yourself, well then you don't need an internet forum.

    3. The rise of Facebook and other social media diverts time away from other things. There's still only 24 hours in the day.

    4. The existence of "forum of forums" that shares its' name with a brand of washing machine would likely be diverting at least some traffic away from a lot of other forums, especially for those seeking only basic knowledge and nothing detailed. That keeps the newbies away from places like ASF and directs them to invest in a "balanced" manged fund as the generic answer.

    5. Forums in general have become their own worst enemy with "use the search function before posting". Yep, I found it with a search. No need to post anything then or even join the forum.

    6. Social acceptability of discussing financial matters seems to have changed. Pre-GFC it was almost "normal" to hear people boasting about their real estate, share or other profits. Greed was good, more was better and nobody really argued otherwise. Since that time it seems to have become almost a taboo subject to mention finance. Whilst ASF is an almost anonymous forum, I've only ever worked out the true identity of one member, I'd take a guess that if someone isn't comfortable discussing finance face to face then for many that will carry through to their willingness (or lack thereof) to discuss it online.

    Just a few random thoughts.....:2twocents
     
  7. burglar

    burglar

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    I post too often ...
    I post low content ...

    Yes, I am afraid to post.

    I spike those who really annoy me.
    They don't seem to stay.
    Maybe not a bad thing?
    Perhaps they were not staying anyway!

    I don't mind the anonymity of hiding behind an avatar.
    It allows a freedom to say what's really on one's mind.

    I wouldn't mind the alternative, I would just post differently!
     
  8. Craton

    Craton Mostly passive, contrarian.

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    I'd like to echo Smurf1976's comments, sums it up quite well IMO.

    Also and at a guess, the GFC would have played a really big role in turning people off equities and thus ppl seeked a more "traditionally secure" haven like property. Chasing the bigger bucks/quick returns is still a great Aussie pastime *tongue firmly planted in cheek*.

    I wonder too if the peak within the baby boomers reaching retirement, have cashed out and are playing the grey nomad game in their Winnebago. So many of them on the roads nowadays and so too the resurgence in caravans.

    Surely the above points to a reduction in participants. For me though, ASF is head and shoulders above HC (no, not a member there) and I'd rather a close knit community over a large rabble any day. Beside that, the depth and quality of stock discussion here is far superior, blatant spruiking/ramp ups are easier to spot as well. :xyxthumbs

    On the subject of the General Chat thread. Forums need Off Topic areas as life isn't just about one particular pursuit and besides, we all need some downtime eventually. I recently discovered the Jokes section, some seriously funny shyte in there, luv it!

    ASF has been instrumental in helping me not only to learn more about equities, but rekindled my interest in our world that revolves so much around money, certainly has opened my eyes up to new possibilities. For that, I'm very thankful to Joe and all the ASF members. :)

    One more thing, I don't agree with Burglar in hiding behind anonymity as a means of posting differently, I do understand what Burgs means though. I've always been of the assumption that if one is true to oneself then it will come out in how one posts. ;)
     
  9. pixel

    pixel DIY Trader

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    Some good points, smurf et al.
    There may be fewer traders or investors around.
    There may be fewer people prepared to share their views of particular stocks.
    In peripheral chat and joke topics, we may find some attractive views presented by some.

    But we are here because we have survived and are still trading; none of the above keeps us from adding content to the STOCK FORUMS.


    Just remember that, unless you add your opinion to someone's assessment of AUSSIE STOCKS or exposé of their method, the time will come when you won't any longer be able to read those hilarious jokes, shake your head over an abundance of off-beat opinions aired in religious and political threads, or shed a tear over heart-warming Save-The-World posts.

    I'm not putting those endless chats down - at least not completely. But they were not the reason why I signed up for this Forum; nor is it the reason why I fight passionately for its survival. I am registered with four Forums, including the washing machine one. IMHO, our ASF gets the nod because -
    • it's more topical than the "Forum of Forums",
    • the no-ramping policy is rigorously enforced, unlike you-know-where,
    • and just about everybody will concede defeat when a stock turns tail, rather than arguing up is infact down, as can be read abundantly in a third Forum.
    I know it's unenforceable, but how about we all make a New Week's Resolution:
    "I pledge to post at least as many and as informative posts about "my" shares or techniques, before adding one line to another topic."
     
  10. pinkboy

    pinkboy

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    Great post Pixel.

    I too thought last night that its about time I asked a few real questions on specific stocks, or at least comment on a stock, even if its completely left field. Im not share savvy though, so whatever I say will be probably wrong, or off the track, but anyway.

    Us thinner sniffing painters aren't a smart breed.


    pinkboy
     
  11. coolcup

    coolcup

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    Hi everyone,

    I love ASF and the content. I think there may be a lack of "volume" in terms of number of posts, but I find the content to be generally of a very high quality, and I would prefer to read 10 quality posts than sift through 50 rubbish one liners (as tends to happen on other forums). I tend to post, if somewhat infrequently, as I think the quality of posting on this forum is generally very high and so I only add to the discussion if I feel it maintains or enhances that quality as opposed to just agreeing or adding for the sake of it.
     
  12. Faramir

    Faramir Very New Investor

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    I have been part of this forum for the past six months. I am struggling to read many old posts. There are so many great ones. I cannot understand why we need hundreds and hundreds of new posts per day. Need time to catch up on my readings.

    The other place is interesting at times but some people there just write things that are nothing more than wild guesses. I have not joined up on any other forums (excluding a motorike one which I never read.) I receive quality feedback here. I haven't been provide quality feedback here due to my lack of experience but I tried to ask some quality questions. It takes effort to post here. Life outside also gets busy. That is why I have been quiet sometimes.

    I apologise if I 'ignore' your posts, I have read it and I think thinking about it. I just need to find time to respond appropriately. If I don't, it only means that I am quietly grateful.

    Three of my best stock picks came directly from this forum.
     
  13. Judd

    Judd

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    Fixed - to reflect my situation and why I now rarely post.
     
  14. Joe Blow

    Joe Blow Administrator Staff Member

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    Thank you all for the feedback, and your words of support. It is very encouraging to know that ASF is both appreciated and beneficial to its members and visitors. :)

    It's true that the GFC took some of the wind out of ASF's sails. Traffic levels are down from what they were in 2007-2009 and have been stagnant, although stable, ever since. A lot of people walked away from the market post-GFC and haven't returned. The GFC also had the effect of switching the primary investment focus from the stock market to property. Although we do have a very active property thread, ASF is not a property forum, so those solely interested in property more than likely participate at a dedicated property forum. Eventually, however, this will swing back the other way and when it does I want ASF to be well positioned to take advantage of an increase in interest in financial markets.

    My focus is on keeping ASF active and growing. That is my primary aim. Central to this goal is increasing the level of traffic and posting, especially in stock specific and other market related threads. Any assistance ASF members can offer is greatly appreciated. As I have recommended in the past, simply focus on those stocks that you keep in your watchlist, or that you currently hold. If there's an announcement or some price action worthy of comment, then just add a short post to the relevant thread to let others know about it. If you have some analysis to offer, even better.

    One thing I have noticed over the years is that just one post can generate a lot more discussion. It can also draw people's attention to stocks that they may not have been aware of, and perhaps also a trading or investment opportunity. Just as importantly, it keeps the stock threads active and those who arrive at ASF for the first time will have more incentive to register and participate. The more active a forum is, the more newcomers get drawn in to the various discussions and the more they explore the forums in depth. Inevitably this will lead to more members, more posting, and more discussion on a greater diversity of topics.

    Just to clarify, I'm not against the General Chat forum at all. In fact I feel it is an essential part of ASF. It kept us relatively active after the GFC, broadens the scope, and gives the forums a depth and greater sense of community that it otherwise wouldn't have. It's nice to have an area where people can take their minds off the market, relax and discuss whatever topics take their interest. I just wish sometimes that issues could be discussed without so much conflict. The best threads at ASF are those where topics are discussed and debated in a constructive and civil way. They are more likely to stay on-topic and offer much more to those reading and participating in them.
     
  15. Julia

    Julia In Memoriam

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    Well, that's a situation peculiar to yourself and other people who haven't been here long, Faramir. Others look for the stimulation of new content.

    I don't think Joe or anyone else has suggested we need "hundreds and hundreds" of new posts per day, just perhaps for us - instead of just having a thought to ourselves about a stock we own or are considering buying - enter that in the form of a post which hopefully others might respond to.

    I don't have any idea about the costs of running a forum, but I'd guess what can be charged for advertising will be at least in part dependent on number of members and number of posts per day, advertisements clicked on etc.
    so I imagine anyone running a forum has to take such a practical point into consideration.

    A long time ago, when ASF hadn't been going long, I recall putting up the suggestion that we could all pay a membership fee. I don't recall a single person supporting the notion and there was considerable outrage at the suggestion. Hence the need for advertising revenue.
     
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