Please donate to Ukulele Underground because VIP is no longer available.

kohanmike

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Please donate to Ukulele Underground or become a VIP Supporter.

I made an incorrect statement in this post, VIP Supporter is available, click: https://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/payments.php

With the last few days of the forum being down, and the reality that this great forum could go away, please sign up to be a VIP Supporter or donate what you can to help it carry on. I started the ball rolling with $100 and also re-upped my VIP that lapsed.

Donate here: https://ukuleleunderground.com/forum-donation/


This is Michael Kohan in Los Angeles, Beverly Grove near the Beverly Center
8 tenor cutaway ukes, 4 acoustic bass ukes, 10 solid body bass ukes, 14 mini electric bass guitars (Total: 36)

Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children in hospital music therapy programs. www.theukc.org
Member The CC Strummers: www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/video, www.facebook.com/TheCCStrummers
 
Last edited:

merlin666

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Similar forums like the AGF receive funding from Sponsor companies that in return receive premium ad space as well as promotion in threads. While I see many companies getting quite heavy promotion here as well I am not sure if they are also official sponsors of UU and contribute to the maintenance of this forum. It would help if there was a section to identify sponsors.
 

Spieler

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Are we sure those who own/run the forum are committed to sustaining it, even with donations? That’s not the sense I get from the announcements re: Discord, etc.
The VIP level was evidently removed; is there an explanation why?

I’m sure the money is appreciated(!), and I am grateful for all the work invested to keep this current iteration creaking along. Whatever helps, helps. ��

I’m just wondering where things actually stand, and if another forum solution is even being considered.

~ S.
 

kohanmike

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Are we sure those who own/run the forum are committed to sustaining it, even with donations? That’s not the sense I get from the announcements re: Discord, etc. The VIP level was evidently removed; is there an explanation why? I’m sure the money is appreciated(!), and I am grateful for all the work invested to keep this current iteration creaking along. Whatever helps, helps. �� I’m just wondering where things actually stand, and if another forum solution is even being considered. ~ S.

That post from Rayan about the state of this forum was more speculative than absolute and is rather old. The general consensus was that Discord was not a viable alternative, it's not a forum, it's a rather limited chat room. At the time I tried a couple of other places, but none worked as well as UU. I've been very grateful that UU been carrying on, and that there is someone there at least making fixes when bigger problems show.
 

LorenFL

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Two thoughts:

1. Don't even hint that they should start doing ads on this forum. It's a very nice, clean forum. One of the last places on the internet that's not cluttered with ads! If it can be user-supported, it's just nicer all around.

2. It really doesn't cost much to keep a forum like this online. Couple hundred dollars per year. Where costs COULD come in would be in keeping the software updated, dealing with problems such as what happened this week, and that sort of thing. Just general "maintenance". IF they don't have someone who is capable of managing it and have to pay someone to do it, that could add some expense.

Bottom line... if nobody's asking for money, don't sweat it too much. If you can donate, absolutely do... but, bear in mind that the expenses aren't huge, and it doesn't appear that anyone is trying to directly make money from it.

If whomever is running it (they seem to keep a low profile, I'm not even sure who it is) is associated with any retail Ukulele outlet, whether they are actively advertising here or not, just by the nature of being a HUGE resource for the Uke community, they are aiding their own business (and all other Uke businesses) by keeping this forum alive. A lot of what this forum does is encourage new players/hobbyists to continue... and ultimately spend more money. For the few hundred bucks a year that it might cost, it's cheap advertising!

(I'm a former web designer, and I've set up and run several forums such as this. Big fan of "old school" web forums over modern social media platforms.)
 

Kenn2018

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The people who keep the site running are volunteers. They do great.

There was a thread about a year ago explaining why they haven't upgraded the software and why there is little moderator interaction.

Essentially the software and bandwidth are too expensive and hard to maintain. (I'm paraphrasing from memory.) That's why they wanted us to migrate to Discord. Which I think is an apt name for the site. It's very difficult to follow a single subject and the thread comments are utterly chaotic. For people used to that sort of interaction, I'm sure it's fine. But I think this type of board is much better for discussions.
 

Wiggy

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"With the last few days of the forum being down, and the reality that this great forum could go away, please give what you can to help..."

Done. I love this place!
 

kohanmike

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Anyone who reads these posts, please donate something, or even become a VIP, it's only $45 a year.
 

GF1

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With the last few days of the forum being down, and the reality that this great forum could go away, please sign up to be a VIP Supporter or donate what you can to help it carry on. I started the ball rolling with $100 and also re-upped my VIP that lapsed.

Donate here: https://ukuleleunderground.com/forum-donation/
There seems to be a massive lack of transparency and communication about how this forum is maintained...

As Spieler asks:-

Are we sure those who own/run the forum are committed to sustaining it, even with donations? That is not the sense I get from the announcements re: Discord, etc.
The VIP level was evidently removed; is there an explanation why?

I’m sure the money is appreciated(!), and I am grateful for all the work invested to keep this current iteration creaking along. Whatever helps, helps.

I’m just wondering where things actually stand, and if another forum solution is even being considered.

~ S.
I completely agree with this. Further down @Kenn2018 states that the forum is run by volunteers, in which case it seems like maintenance of the forum is separate to VIP membership of UU, and I worry that donating in that way will not benefit the forum at all.

Two thoughts:

1. Don't even hint that they should start doing ads on this forum. It's a very nice, clean forum. One of the last places on the internet that's not cluttered with ads! If it can be user-supported, it's just nicer all around.

2. It really doesn't cost much to keep a forum like this online. Couple hundred dollars per year. Where costs COULD come in would be in keeping the software updated, dealing with problems such as what happened this week, and that sort of thing. Just general "maintenance". IF they don't have someone who is capable of managing it and have to pay someone to do it, that could add some expense.

Bottom line... if nobody's asking for money, don't sweat it too much. If you can donate, absolutely do... but, bear in mind that the expenses aren't huge, and it doesn't appear that anyone is trying to directly make money from it.

If whomever is running it (they seem to keep a low profile, I'm not even sure who it is) is associated with any retail Ukulele outlet, whether they are actively advertising here or not, just by the nature of being a HUGE resource for the Uke community, they are aiding their own business (and all other Uke businesses) by keeping this forum alive. A lot of what this forum does is encourage new players/hobbyists to continue... and ultimately spend more money. For the few hundred bucks a year that it might cost, it's cheap advertising!

(I'm a former web designer, and I've set up and run several forums such as this. Big fan of "old school" web forums over modern social media platforms.)

I completely agree on point 2. I dabble in web design, and there's free, decent, robust, up-to-date forum software that could handle a site like this very easily and with a minimum of fuss.

I'm part of a few different online communities (like everyone) and I've seen sites where a free community has been built, and then the owners have lost interest and don't seem to recognise that, even if you offered it for free, the sheer fact a community has grown creates an obligation on you to look after it.

If that isn't something you want to do yourself, then you need to put in plans to hand it over to someone who will.
 

tm3

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There seems to be a massive lack of transparency and communication about how this forum is maintained...

I get enough enjoyment out of this place that I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is, once things get cleared up a bit per GF1 and Ed1's observations.
 

Ed1

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There seems to be a massive lack of transparency and communication about how this forum is maintained...
I'm part of a few different online communities (like everyone) and I've seen sites where a free community has been built, and then the owners have lost interest and don't seem to recognise that, even if you offered it for free, the sheer fact a community has grown creates an obligation on you to look after it.

If that isn't something you want to do yourself, then you need to put in plans to hand it over to someone who will.

Past the "Internet Uke Friends" we've made and the general chatting here, the strength of this forum is the huge amount of information stored. There are many well thought out great answers to questions asked over the years and I would never want to lose that information. If the folks here are willing to keep the forum going with minimal work on their part, but aren't willing to pass it to a group of volunteers, I prefer to use a carrot ($) and not a stick (shaming) to get a little more help from the UU Folks.

I too have dabbled in web sites and forums (Many years ago, I kept a mail and web server under my desk). I know how easy it can be when everything is working well - and how difficult and time consuming it can be to fix some problems when they occur.

If there is a group of folks here that are computer savvy, and at least one is familiar or willing to become familiar with VBulletin forum software, then perhaps the folks at UU would be willing to talk with that group. But until then, I'm going with the carrot.
 

LorenFL

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If it comes to the notion of taking over this forum from its current owner/admin, I would suggest looking into converting it from vBulletin to phpBB. While vBulletin does have a lot more features, it is a commercial product, which requires occasional upgrades to be purchased. It's also a bit more complicated to work with. phpBB is open-source. Free to use, and plenty adequate for a forum like this. I don't think most people would even notice if you converted.

Using phpBB, the only expense other than hosting would be time to keep the software updated every year or so.
 

wqking

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If it comes to the notion of taking over this forum from its current owner/admin, I would suggest looking into converting it from vBulletin to phpBB. While vBulletin does have a lot more features, it is a commercial product, which requires occasional upgrades to be purchased. It's also a bit more complicated to work with. phpBB is open-source. Free to use, and plenty adequate for a forum like this. I don't think most people would even notice if you converted.

Using phpBB, the only expense other than hosting would be time to keep the software updated every year or so.

Yes there are good enough free alternatives to vBulletin.
Also such a forum doesn't need fancy features. The most valuable treasure on this forum is the amount of active users and the information they contribute.