The future of OS-DB.net (your views and ideas)
Since the site closed back in early January 2014, many people have aired their opinions, but we’ll concentrate on those that were constructive. Regardless of why it was closed, the important factor is its future and whether the site still has a place alongside the already established facebook group.
Since the creation of the Facebook OS-DB.net group late 2013, it wasn’t until the website closure that it really took off and at the time of writing this it’s just shy of 550 members. Although initial interest was high and people continue to join, contribution has subsided somewhat but that is to be expected for a niche and unique brand. One of the advantages of facebook are the notifications, which is an automatic feature. What facebook cannot cater for is unique member privacy since most people are visible by their real name, coupled with limited ‘order’ and ‘information’ sorting. facebook is fast becoming the default/first site visited by the masses when they launch their browser but what about the this place?
Here’s some feedback received (positive and negative): Great for the lightweight discussion; quick and easy commenting and browsing; one stop shop for many things under one roof; quick and easy content; information shared moves down the wall rapidly and is effectively lost; privacy; Is think there is a place for both. facebook could be the websites shout-box, share simple info and announcements and link back to OS-DB as "the source". Maybe get rid of the shout-box on the site, use facebook for assisting in site member numbers that and also use FB to increase the sites membership.
Since speaking to various parties about their forums ( not just BMX) and the impact of facebook and how and if they utilise it, several have taken a similar view and are favouring a change to their forum and content towards exclusive content. Here’s some further ideas about the site itself, how it could maybe improve.
1. Discussions on facebook are evaluated and if deemed worthwhile linked to a more in-depth conversation on the forum – helps to create concise and visible content in an orderly structure.
2. Changing the forum to a moderated sign-up over self-approval – moves towards a more exclusive site but not invisible.
3. Creating an exclusive area for Moderators or for those who contribute financially/post count (this should not be an ‘us’ and ‘them’ area, more-so benefits for those who contribute frequently or assist the site (requires more thought and ideas).
4. Bringing the model reference section up-to date, include more information to do with component pictures and colours/finish type (painted/anodised).
5. Permitting discussion/comments for reference sections (e.g. models/etc) – at the moment models in the reference section are that, reference and you cannot comment against them.
6. Creating and encouraging members to become investigators and or Moderators. There are so many areas where people could help – ex rider locating/interviews; tracking down ex-employees and those who worked behind the scenes; Model investigation; protecting brand copying, etc.
7. Overview of forum names and the content – less cluttered (more top level clarity over showing a forum for each area). E.g. move for sale/wanted/trade/etc under a top level ‘Classifieds’ with sub forums.
8. Overview of what is permitted on the facebook group with dictating (seems to work quite well as is).
9. Work closer with those who are permitted to reproduce and get better deals for forum and facebook users (maybe linked to member type / contribution levels).
10. Look and feel (freshen up) – recolour the logo to reflect the DB colours, Black/Silver (Grey)/Red/Gold and Blue.
Ultimately people have got to want it to work, words can be spoken, but actions demonstrate commitment. Once the ideas are compiled a decision can be made to see if the effort is worthwhile. If you have ideas, thoughts or suggestions and want to help to get this place going again then drop me an email firstname.lastname@example.org
In the meantime there's an alternative old school Diamond Back BMX group on facebook.