People have been scared to talk about this, as they don’t want a bad rep. But, it needs to be brought up, because the community has been severely damaged, and these forums have been slowly dying. I remember when I first joined, there were constantly discussions going on everywhere. Now it’s just 80% a self promo place, that doesn’t even work good for promo.
So why have the forums been getting more and more inactive? Well, here’s a couple pretty solid reasons that a lot of people that I’ve talked to can agree with. If you are a mod or a dev, please keep an open mind.
No off-topic discussion. Even the #random category is strictly Auxy/music production conversation based. The meme thread is the best example of this. It was removed because it was an off-topic thread. This thread being removed is a good place to mark the beginning of this website’s slow demise. If you think about the users who frequented that thread, you’d notice that most of them are no longer active on here, and more active on discord, where they CAN post memes.
Lack of community events. We all know that BTCs have basically ended. We only had a single one this year. If the discussions I brought up in the last point are what keep users here, then BTCs and other events are what bring them here. BTCs brought likely hundreds of people here, and even if 1% of them stay active, that’s still more people than are currently active. I know the devs might not have much time to run BTCs but they could at least let someone else do it (plenty of people here would be willing to). All they’d have to do is promote it in the app. Fwiw, it doesn’t even have to be BTCs. The March House challenge hosted by @MisterMaster was a nice “official” challenge to participate in. If it was promoted in the app, it could have brought many new people here.
Are there any reasons for these problems to persist? They could be easily fixed at no expense other than a little bit of time.
Criticism chilling effect. I don’t think it needs to be stated again what sort of impression was given off about the whole debacle with certain forum users and the developers, but ever since then there has been very little brought against the app in terms of issues and complaints users have had. I for one have felt the effects and have been hesitant to even voice my opinion in a positive way.
Really… it’s a lot of things that have contributed to this. While the forum tournaments will help, it definitely isn’t going to be the be-all-end-all to the problem of people not using the forums much. I’ve even tried to suggest a sort of event that could tie into an official announcement on the app, akin to the march house challenge, but alas it was left on the cutting room floor due to both time constraints and to radio silence.
There’s a bunch more things playing into this, such as recent departures/inactivities from well-known users, as well as the growing restlessness that is pervasive whenever discussing issues users are facing. Overall, I really hope things change soon, as my own interest is dying out as well.
From what I think I’ve read in the past, it not only seems that the meme thread was taken down because it wasn’t related (Although there were some Auxy memes in there), it also seems that the devs and janitors closed it because they simply didn’t like memes or jokes. I think I remember one janitor stating he had to mute the thread because it was “annoying”.
In my opinion, the devs should at least make an “Off-topic” thread or something like that if they don’t “useless” discussions anywhere else. (Or an “Off-topic” topic/channel. Idk I barley hang around here.)
But it should be allowed on here because this is a place where people with a common interest can socialize. Even if it’s not about music, any discussion is still a discussion and the reason websites like this exist.
Edit: also, the discord servers are either dead or only attract users that are already on the forums.
With how thinly spread all the discord server communities actually are, it leaves very little activity on the disco itself. And what little activity does exist is trivialized because it isn’t as important as it could be.
That’s just my take on it though. I mean, the whole reason why the disco was created was because Lenberg himself didn’t like the discord interface, no? And wanted something different?
I agree with basically everything you said. I remember this time last year, when I could go to the forum and people actually talked more, there were more genuine conversations, and there were BTC’s, which were always fun and generated plays for me (sorry, I had to.) Now the whole place is practically dead, and the parts of it that aren’t are mainly self promotion that doesn’t even work, as you said yourself. Back when more people used the forum, the Finished Tracks section actually would get a bit of traction for artists in the community. I remember finding good artists I hadn’t heard of, including many I still listen today. Now, it just…doesn’t feel the same.
Those are many of the reasons I don’t spend much time here anymore.
I agree with what you’re all saying, but even if they fix this, a lot of people won’t come back. It just seems kind of pointless to say this because not very many people even check the Disco anymore. Fixing these problems won’t necessarily make people come back…
When i joined in January of this year (as Insomniac if you guys remember) I was astonished at the livelihood and learned so much and gained valuable relationships with you all… all I’ve seen since the ongoing silence incident in the summer was escalating tension and less and less activity… i know its been said so much already but i don’t want days where topics literally never shift and no one even cares to change that… i mean I changed my name to Insolidarity because I feel it necessary for me to help in the unification of us, the Auxy community, under our common interests. If we can’t do that here and as (@TheRealJFalc stated the members of the discord servers are so dispersed) then we are headed for the inevitability of the community falling into disunity, disrepair, despair, and the pits of death. HELP SAVE THE COMMUNITY please for all of our well-beings and for the preservation of interest!
I still come everyday and bare witness. I’m virtually sitting next to Auxy’s deathbed, waiting for the news from the doctors of a cure for its terminal disease. We need to be that cure. @Auxy i really hope you and the rest of the devs and mods read this thread…
I remember back last year when I would visit this website to take a break from my ever increasing workload. I would sit back, relax, laugh at the memes in the 🅰️UxY Ⓜ️EmEs! #memealert #memealert #memealert thread, listen to random artists’ music in the finished tracks, and chat about production and music in general with the other members. The disco was a vibrant, fun place back then. Over the summer, the tone of the forum went steadily downhill with radio silence from the developers and increasingly upset users voicing their opinions. While some of them were more vocal than others and a few stepped over the line from being helpful to antagonistic, a lot of valid points were raised, and have since been silenced (@akabillposters)
The Auxy Collective reminds me a lot of what this website used to be. There is an active chat channel where people discuss everything from music production to video games and everything inbetween. There is an active music feedback channel where producers are almost guaranteed to get constructive criticism within a few days if not less. But my personal favorite is the memes channel where I can get a few laughs that just lighten up my day.
Ditto to @Polar and @Aqzi, the closing and unlisting of the lighthearted, off-topic threads such as #memealert and the forum games (they were pretty spammy at times though) really symbolize what happened to the forum. Most of the fun outlets where people came to be together joking around about our commonality: the auxy app and music production were shut down. I understand that the developers/moderators (not sure which) thought that the off-topic discussions were detrimental to the community, but I think they may have missed the fact that the majority of the users on this forum are casual bedroom producers who are doing this for fun.
Let’s look at it simply. When you strip a community away of essential components required to maintain an engaged group of people, the community as a whole will suffer. If we take a look at the forum in its early conception compared to now we will notice several key differences (and losses):
Forum member of the week: An excellent incentive to check out new producers you may not have heard of with the possibility of being featured. No reason not to have it besides lack of motivation on the part of those organizing it.
Beat the Clock events: Several users have tried to reboot these, and I myself am organizing track challenges on the Auxy Collective discord server. Yet another great potential source of engagement from a music making community.
Akabillposter’s rants: Okay… these were pretty hilarious (and often times very enlightening )
Disappearance of the Auxy Tournaments: Honestly, these were some of the biggest events on the forums and I don’t see why there aren’t more of these (if not so large-scale as to exhaust the community). Switch out the hosts so DHO doesn’t get exhausted either.
Loss of the meme thread: I’ll be honest here, I was in favor of the removal of the meme thread in light of focusing the community a bit more and adding more of a professional vibe here. But having been here for a while since the disappearance of said thread, this community isn’t really built to be such a serious community (like that of the AudioBus forums, for example). There are too many young and “silly” (for lack of a better word) people. And I especially didn’t envision the removal of the memes thread and every single other community involving event.
Infrequent communication from the Auxy developers: This has been somewhat improved and I don’t want to dwell to much here as it’d be beating a dead horse. But it really helps any community to not seem like a ghost town if those who represent and head the community show that they’re alive once and a while.
Just to name a few.
It’s also worth noting that a lot of people here have moved on to other communities (whether it be because of a chain effect of inactivity inciting branching out or just evolving as an artist). This community really is a bubble, and that can be a good and bad thing. You get to know one another and become close to each other, but you also lack variety and context as to what really exists in the world of music production. To name a few, Southborne, IVO, ICS, etc. have all moved on from the Auxy community for the most part. It’s all part of our evolution as a person and a producer and really is wonderful, but is something to keep in mind nonetheless.
All and all, it’s really not surprising to see how the community has declined as far as engagement and activity. There’s really no reason to check here as opposed to say, the Beatmaker forums or maybe the Phuture Collective facebook group. This is not set in stone and can easily be remedied–it was not always like this and we’re only in this state from lack of initiative. If we as a community but specifically the staff around here give this community a purpose and a reason to check here, there’s no reason why we would not see people trickle in again and maybe even some new faces around. Do some promoting of the forum via. the feed or twitter maybe–anything that’ll pull it out of the rut it’s currently in.
I’d also like to point out that this is not undoing the positive progress that removing spammy and unnecessary threads has done. I still think it was an excellent choice to remove the pointless forum games posts and random threads that popped up all the time. But there is a middle ground that will have to be found, and you don’t find it without trying and tweaking things. Right now I think we’re way too tight on the reigns–maybe loosen up a bit. If we find we’re slipping too far and there’s too much unfocused and immature discussion, we can tweak it again.
Now, if the intent is to discourage engagement here and encourage people to branch out from the forum and find other communities, then this is a fine path the forum’s going down by all means. My impression, however, was that the developers and janitor(s) here wanted to keep focus centralized to the forum and minimize as many small community divergences as possible, in which case some of the aforementioned changes would be warranted.