Greetings fellow members of The Golden Age of Hollywood!
March 7th was the sixth year anniversary of GAOH's move to the Ning social platform. Some of you were with us on the old Invision Free message board and we're happy you have stuck with us. For those of you who were not I will give a little history of GAOH.
Sometime in early 2004 Derek Mclellan (Classic Movie Man) started a message board on EZ Boards. I joined that board as a member. Derek had become distressed over the board losing messages after so much work had gone into it and I suggested that we move over to Invision Free because I had already had positive experience with using Invision Free. In November of 2004 Derek set up the layout and I worked on skin design and the two of us, with the help of a couple of moderators ran that site until March of 2008. At one point the message board was peaking at 300 posts per day and was quite active. However, when Facebook and MySpace hit the internet we slowly saw the numbers decline and in an effort to have GAOH survive in some form I suggested to Derek we transition/move to a social network platform. I spent a couple months trying different platforms and ultimately decided on Ning.
At the time Ning was still a free service and was stable and easy to use. Much like it still is today, but today it costs us close to $300 a year to maintain the site on Ning. Thanks to the generosity of the members we have never not been able to pay the bill since they went to a pay service three years ago.
March 7th, 2008 was the first day of the new social network. Many of the former members did not come over with us and the Invision Free board is just a ghost ship these days. I don't have the heart to delete it as it has a lot of good content. I wish there had been a way for us to import all the message board data over but it just was not possible. For anyone interested in checking out the old site you can go here:
That meager start on Ning six years ago has seen GAOH grow to 1,450 members as of today. Now we have had many leave and some were asked to leave or made to leave. We would be over 1500 today if all members remained and probably well over 2000 if all our former members had been willing to come to the new site.
It's necessary to say that without Derek's vision and love of classic films GAOH would not exist today in any form. THANK YOU DEREK!!
Also, it would not exist without it's members, and without you we have no reason to exist.
And, I could not run this site without the help of my good friend Dave Miller. He has been a devoted moderator and worthy of much praise for all the work he puts into the site. My interest and commitment to the site has not been as involved as I used to be and so Dave has been a godsend.
Finally I would like to give an update on the upcoming transition to the Ning 3.0 platform. I have been working with the new platform and trying to design the site to keep the current look and design as much as possible BUT there will be differences when we make the move. Ning has been taking a lot longer than they projected on the forced move and I will have a year to migrate the site to the new platform once they finish their design. Many currently enjoyed features are active and working but many are not and I will not migrate until they have things fully set up and functional. Once we have to make the migration we may have to purge some of our member base. They have caved in and let sites under 1500 members grandfather in and I think the $300 a year fee is manageable with the help of our members. If we would have to move to the next level of service I don't think we could raise the funds to maintain the site and thus Dave and I will have to watch our active member base more closely and purge out members who are members in name only. I hate that that is the case but it is the reality of Ning's new business model.
Sorry this post has been so long but I felt the anniversary needed to be acknowledged in some way. Thanks to all of you who have made GAOH the great site it has become. We value all of you and hope you will continue with us as we make the transition to Ning 3.0.