Saturday, November 8, 2008

Has the wis.dm community the will and strength to survive?

Hey everyone- we’ve had a blast over the past two years dreaming up and building wis.dm and we’re continuing our mission- no fear there. We have built one of the most innovative social platforms online and we are applying the technology into a variety of use cases and we are in conversations with many of the major media companies.

As far as the wis.dm site is concerned, it’s been successful in so may different ways - but it hasn’t (so far, at least) grown to sufficient scale that we can consider supporting its cost by advertising, simple or exotic.

Just to be clear, we think about the various departments of the business of Soflow Inc., (owner of wis.dm) independently, the wis.dm site is one of these and I want it to begin to stand on its own two feet. In essence, I want the wis.dm community to become self-sustaining and I think that's healthy!!

We’ve started this process by asking you for a donation toward the cost of running the wis.dm site. The good news here is that the costs are not that great... perhaps in the region of $18,000 per annum or $1,500 per month. I’m happy to hear your thoughts about how we (collectively) can raise that money- would you prefer a subscription site for example? If so, what do you think is a fair price?

Please note, that this is not about finding an investor- we’re not looking to raise cash for our business- this is about building a sustainable community. It’s really a question of the evolution of wis.dm and determining whether or not the wis.dm community has the will and strength to survive! As I say- I think that's healthy.

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

To answer the post title...YES.

Anonymous said...

That's quite a sum. I've never belonged to a subscription site and I don't think such a thing is viable for wis.dm. Users will always be willing to be donors, or course, within reason, but to reach that mark you would need 100 users donating $15 per month. How are other sites able to survive that don't depend on revenue from ads?

I think the best thing to do is increase the traffic. Easier said than done right? Study how things are done over at reddit.com and digg.com since those are similar kinds of sites, but ones with might higher amounts of activity. Maybe you could start putting wis.dm bottons on sites for articles just like how you see Digg and Reddit and Buzz and Stumbleupon buttons. That would definitely increase traffic. It's a shame to think that wis.dm will need to adapt in any way just to stay viable for the long term, but that might be the case. That's how life works isn't it?

But really, I'd love to start seeing wis.dm bottons on articles around the internet, so they can easily be added.

I donated $15 today, for what it's worth.

Anonymous said...

Also, a "generate random question" button might help to spread some of the activity around/make it a little more fun.

wisemama said...

I think it is sad that the advertising revenues are not enough
I am willing to do a donation from time to time, but not on a monthly basis, I'm considering doing the donation for $15 give or take some, but I won't be doing it on a monthly basis
the holidays are coming up and I will be working more and doing more activities IRL.

I hope this will have a happy ending, I don't want to leave wis.dm, but will if it comes to that.

Benny Mattson said...

Post a p.o. box or PM me an address and I'll send you a check.

JØE said...

I have always loved the "generate random question" button too.

Anonymous said...

If I have to pay then I'm outta here.
Sincerely
Kevin that dinosaur guy.

Tony H said...

Please don't make it a subscription site, as doing so will abruptly and permanently halt the flow of new users and thus the site will die as existing users leave (with probably more than half on the first day of subscription service).

I think there are several ways to potentially both increase revenue and improve the site.

For example, right now it is fairly common for people to ask questions about songs/music videos/movie clips, I would bet that if you had a widget to lookup and create a link to that CD/Book/Movie on say Amazon or iTunes that a fair portion of us would spend the 10 extra seconds to make that association and then you would have a direct buy link to what we are asking people about, which pays much better than a google ad.

zen said...

There are some here that make the site worthwhile and fun, some who have become friends.

Then there are those who make it so disturbing as to wonder why even bother logging on. If I wanted racism, hatred, xenophobia and vile language I could turn on the news. Do we work to live, or live to work? This is off-time, relaxing time, recreational time - i.e. very valuable time.

Right now, for me, it's 50-50. I'm still at the stage where if it closed down, I wouldn't lose sleep. Sorry.

Appleseed said...

I'd say that morphing this into a subscription site isn't a great idea. The other comments sum up why, quite nicely. The new user rate would drop drastically as would the existing member rate.

There's been enough issue with keeping people from deleting and leaving the site as it is, why make it worse by having us pay to use? I know personally, I just can't afford to pay, but I can donate from time to time.

The random question button, also a fantastic idea. It's easy to get caught in your own inbox and miss out on new questions.. and easier way to find them would be wonderful.

SillyGirl said...

Yes we have the strength to survive, because we are more than just friends here, we have become addicted to one another, like family really....
A world of friends that have fallen in love with one another...
And we as a wis.dm community will help pull this site trough because we have the desire to do so....:)
PEACE..

MichaleCS said...

I am donating as much and as often as I can from whatever disposable income I can muster. I think, and I have stated this before, that your Quickfire app has potential. Perhaps an iPhone app could be developed and made purchasable as well?

Anonymous said...

A couple of folks said, "How do the other "free" sites make it?" That's a good question, even though it isn't a Y/N question. ;)
Yes, it would be sad if Wis.dm died. It's been a big Force in my life for the last 18 months, an experience I wouldn't trade for the world. But, as with anything, I can live without it if I have to. Love Ya'll. ~Anonymouse Dutchess

Anonymous said...

Viva la Wis!

4HealthyLiving said...

Has there been any thought towards exposure of wis.dm to ALL college campus.
All colleges now have an intranet and I do believe that a fee of $10 per applicate at all the colleges with in just the US alone will bring substancial cash flow

4HealthyLiving said...

Has anyone given any notice or thought to the fact that there are brown (dead) leave hanging on trees,which normally would have fallen off in fall leaving the trees bear.
What will happen when the buds(new leaves) need that sprout in the spring?
How if at all is this conected to global warming or sun dimming?

I have brought this up to others who are located in different states across the US and yes it is occuring there as well. Others that I have shared this awareness with states that they had not noticed until I brought it to there attension

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Eh, whatever. Wis.dm is not what it once was, and even back in the day it was unhealthy. Wis.dm attracts sad, lonely, desperate people. My comment will probably be deleted, but it's the unfortunate truth. Just cut your losses and move on.

Anonymous said...

Wis.dm is shutting down.

The answer to this: NO.

(sad)

Shell said...

Apparently wis.dm will not last out the month.

Matt Browne SFW said...

Thank you team wis.dm - It was a wonderful time. Our community is strong and I sincerely hope it will stay intact regrouping again on some other online forum platform. I tried fluther.com this morning and I like it. I hope to see all of my wis.dm friends there!

Greetings,
Matt Browne

Audiobook Downloads said...

I think anything between $3 and $5 a month from your members via PayPal is accepted. Otherwise make more space on the side panels where you can promote products as affiliates. Also give your members the chance to advertise on your site. These steps will make your site very profitable. Just take action and get your loyal members to help you out. I think you are sitting on a goldmine!

Chris said...

I heard you were already out of business, and shut down... Whats the story? No blog post in months, is this Normal???

ShellAnswerMan said...

Shell says, apparently not.

4/1/2009

Anonymous said...

shit happens

lemsteve said...

"Shit Happens"...Wasn't that clever?

funadvice said...

I'm Jeremy, co-founder & President of FunAdvice.com a social Q&A site...we get ~190K visitors on a busy day, making us one of the top six sites in this very crowded category.

If you're still looking for somebody to "run the servers"...well, your quote is extremely high ($1,500 / month) based on what I can tell you have traffic wise.

However, if you're willing to engage in a frank discussion with me, it might be possible we'll take over "wisdm" and or transition it to FunAdvice, if there is some value here. My email is my first name (jeremy) at funadvice dot com, do get in touch...leaving a service such as this to rot on the vine, so to speak, is kind of a sad end for your community...by giving them & endorsing a comparable (perhaps better?) platform...well, it shows that you care & you'd like to see them stay together, even if it's not on your site.

Resveratrol said...

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Health Power said...

hmmm...,
could be interesting
I was thinkin about this topic
thanks for the post.
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colon cleanse said...

There's been enough issue with keeping people from deleting and leaving the site as it is, why make it worse by having us pay to use? I know personally, I just can't afford to pay, but I can donate from time to time.

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Acai said...

it might be possible we'll take over "wisdm" and or transition it to FunAdvice, if there is some value here.

ShellAnswerMan said...

Well, you claimed palindromists might find a way back to the wis.dm. Was this just some clever bullshit, Will?

Madam' I'm Adam

TurtlesAllTheWayDown said...

I think the whole points system was a bad idea. It was like playing an online RPG and not being able to catch up. People who had way too much time on their hands flooded the stream with questions just so they could get noticed and at the top of the leader boards, the problem would persist. You didn't do a good job of letting everyone feel special. The whole quiz thing even made it worse. I didn't care what the question is about at long as it was good. It could have been about using soap as shampoo or world peace for all I care. I just didn't want to see the same people put at center stage constantly.

I think the questions needed some kind of moderation, not in content, but maybe only so many per minute or hour. I gave up because my questions never got answered, not because it wasn't something people wanted to talk about, but because they only saw Yuchen's questions. She was a young girl, but I hated her ways. Wis.dm should have saw this as not beneficial to them. That culture drove many serious and casual people away. Wis.dm was on track to be as big as MySpace, not a 100 small community. Millions of users equals alot of ad revenue.

Sad. I loved Wis.dm for a while.

Will Koffel said...

This post has started to get spammed. Since there's no active discussion on this thread, we've turned off commenting.

Thanks for everyone's support.

-Team wis.dm