This letter was written before the events that led to the second ban in AS-NS history, and what I think is something of a shake up of the way AS-NS works, and is seen. That being said this is as valid now as it was before hand.
AS-NS is 18 months old. In the last 18 months we have been though a lot together. We have had our ups and downs. I have definitely had some ups and downs. We have had wars with AVEN we have had people try and bring us down in every conceivable way, including having 90% of our heritage deleted by a fucking prick who couldn't keep people interested so thought he wouldn't just steal our users but fuck the place up. (I am not bitter honest).
In the last few weeks I have talked about throwing in the towel, I have had to deal with the most shitty lies, and back stabbing, and I have had to read many things about me that made me feel physically sick.
Things though started to turn round. The long lasting feud with [Can't Unfortunately Name Today]. ended (so I feel a bit bad using that place holder, i'm sure they will see the funny side). Yup I feel vindicated. Sure there are others that really should own up, and lay to bed the shitty things attributed to me. Ultimately though I feel that regardless of opinions people are stupid enough to continue to hold my reputation in publish fact has been restored.
The support of you guys has meant so much to me. You have done the right amount of welcoming back, and the right amount of prying into my health. I know I am not the best leader in the world, and I don't try to pretend otherwise. But today I feel refreshed. I feel like we have an opportunity to move forward, and make a success of AS-NS.
Sure it's going to be a lot of work, and I am sure the crap will continue to roll in, but I have the strength, ability, and motivation to make this place a great place.
I have some long term plans that I am always talking to people about, and they are coming to fruition, but the biggest change in AS-NS history is ahead, and hopefully very close.
The name change for me has been an issue. I like the fact AS-NS is obscure, and more like a secret society than a commercial website. But what we need more than anything is members, and not being found is a hindrance. Also in this day and age a site has to have a pretty name or it won't get anywhere. We already have the name and the hosting setup Asexual.me will be our new home.
The most exciting thing though is that as you probably know is that I have found a way to use the same back end as AVEN. I am not excited because I want to be like AVEN god no. I will do all I can to make us stand out. I am excited because it is a really neat, clean, usable, and friendly user experience that lends it's self to a professional look, and will I am sure lead to us being taken more seriously on the world stage.
My plans are not to try and compete with AVEN, as I have said many times before I am happy they are there, and it serves a need. There are though issues with AVENs representation of asexual people. I really feel there is a desire out there for an alternative, and I strongly believe our mentality and ethos has the chance of success.
There are still many things we as a community need to work out. We really need to figure out a way of dealing with disruptive people in a fair, and fast manner. There is one thing I know about that, and it's that AVENs way is not the right way. We need to keep more members than we throw away.
Running this site really reminds me of running a pub. I just replace drunk people with angry, and bonkers people. Oh and drunk angry bonkers people. You can't ban everyone who is disruptive, you cant kick everyone who is rowdy out, and you really don't want to kick people out who are having fun. Sometimes the best thing to do is nothing. You can't force people to get along, but you can leave people alone and trust that they will just deal with things without calling the police.
I have a vision for where I want us to be in the next 18 months, and I hope I get to share it with all of you.
I do need some help. I have no income. I am disabled. I get about enough to eat. In the winter not enough to eat. I cannot afford to pay for the upgrades. This place has survived as long as it has because we have a benefactor, but I can't ask them to foot the bill all the time. I don't want to ask them, and I would rather they didn't put up any money this time.
I would like though not to just ask for your money. I want to give something back, so I am going to dish out some incentives, something like a kick starter. I can't sell of influence or moderation spots, as that would go against the way this place works. This place will always be 1 member 1 vote. I will always just be the guardian. Those who contribute will always be guardians too.
I can though offer some fun things.... As you know AVEN you will know what I mean...
£1 ($1)+ You will get a thank you from me, and my eternal thanks, and a mention forever in the site credits.
£25 ($33) + You get your name on the founder page, and a founder privilege. You will get a status in the same place as "Moderator" on AVEN, and the right to a signature saying such. You will also get access to a secret place on the forum where there will be a steering comity.
£50 ($66)+ You will get an embroidered t-shirt with the site logo. (or any item of clothing you can get to me, I can embroider, I have the technology) and the stuff above.
£100 ($132)+ I will mark your location on a map and pray towards you daily. I will hand engrave our logo onto anything you like I have some huge 1L wine glasses. ( I can engrave stuff too ) plus everything above.
£200 ($264)+ I will do any dare you ask of me. Disbelieve you. I'll work out something for you specially. I know I can make some cool stuff... and all the stuff above.
£500 ($791)+ I will fall off my chair. Build you a decent computer, and customise is with the asexual.me logo ( I have a load of pretty decent computer gear ), or I will take requests. Anything you want. Plus all the stuff above.
£1000 ($1320)+ Errmmm that's just silly. I'll name my next child after you. I'll teach cat to jump up and down at the mention of your name. I'll snog cav... i'll tell you how to do my best magic trick, weep, and ALL the stuff above.
That's about the best I can think of right now. I need for the basic package £200 ($265) and then £60 ($80)a year for the software. The hosting costs me £20 ($27) a month.
If we raise more than £300 ($396), I will get an add on that costs £100 ($132)few add ons.
If we raise more than £450 ($595) I will get everything I think we will need.
If we raise more than $600 ($793) I will get something cool for everyone who chipped in, and engrave them all with the date, the logo, and FOUNDER...
If we raise more than £1000 ($1320) I will find something that you all like and do that. I'll pay for the site advertised on google, and some other places.
I really don't expect any of you to give anything, and I am not expecting to get all I need. I will sell a few things to get it going.
IF YOU WANT TO DONATE PLEASE CONTACT LordGrep DO NOT USE THE DONATE BUTTON.
Realistically it's going to take me about 2 weeks to a month to get things up and running after I get my paws on the funds. I imagine there will be about 500hrs work in having the whole thing up, running settled debugged, etc. I will make all the things I promised before Christmas.
I know funding won't be such an issue when we are larger. At the moment though I really need your help. Please don't give any more than you can afford, and please please don't expect any more influence than is fair. Integrity is so important to me, and my vision. I don't want lead anyone on in any way.
If you do decide to help us out I can't thank you enough. I hope you will always be proud to have helped create something worth while.
If there is any other skill you have that you think might be helpful, PLEASE let me know. I really need wordy types, and people who can project manage.
AceTimes still needs writers (I haven't forgotten about that). I'd love to host some interesting blogs.
Thank you so much for your time...
PS: (NEXT POST)