"I know you like your cocks, but don't bring your preferences into my streams!"Kureiji Ollie

Three Month Anniversary & State of the Community Address

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The Proctor

Manager Arc Unlocked?
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Joined:  Sep 9, 2022
I never thought I'd be here.

Three months ago, this forum was a little tickle in the back of my head. A small voice in my ear. An intrusive buzz whenever I browsed the homeland and encountered lag or unexpected latency. I could have ignored it. I could have concentrated on all the challenges I'd have to face and overcome. I could have thought 'Proctor, you fool, you've never run a modern internet community, who're you to take the plunge into unknown waters like this?'

I'm glad I didn't. I'm glad I decided to ignore those thoughts and dive in head-first. I have no regrets, because here I stand, with a robust community and a forum that gets an average of 15,000 views every 24 hours. All this in three months, when many forums struggle to get fifty members in a year.

If you build it, they will come.

Of course, I couldn't have gotten here alone. Certain people have been incredibly helpful and supportive of me. With respect to OpSec, I can't name some of them, and others have simply faded back into the community without telling me who they registered as. So all I can do is extend a general 'thank you' to everyone who went beyond passive support and ventured into the realms of proactive encouragement and enabling. Without you, none of this would exist.

I'd also like to thank resident MVP @Fucking YTs who has been instrumental in wrangling Xenforo's software into its current usable state. @Steiger has also made considerable contributions to things like the quotation system. Other users have done things like submit new emojis and other things that make this place feel more like home.

An online community lives or dies based on the investment of crazy tech-heads like these. I may have been able to get where I am now by myself, but it would've required learning new skills that frankly I probably wouldn't have the patience for, especially not considering my workload and other factors in my life.

In the last year or so I've desperately, nay, frantically been trying to find some kind of creative community that hasn't been irrevocably corrupted by progressive cancer and political correctness. I have found a howling wasteland infested with pronoun-people, furries, degenerates and hysterical wine-moms. All these people believe with their hearts and souls that everyone must demonstrate a sickening, saccharine level of sweetness and positivity to each-other at all times, or else somebody will neck themselves on the spot. I have gotten banned from whole communities by saying hello in 'too aggressive a tone'. I wish I was joking.

It is insane and terrifying to me how the hugbox mentality has spread to every corner of the internet like end-stage cancer. I have always valued open discourse, fair critique and honest analysis. This is impossible in 99% of the communities I have participated in recently.

That's why I'm so impressed with this community as it stands. You have all been relatively nice, respectful and civil to one-another without it being demanded of you. Personally, the harder people try to censor me, the more I want to scream offensive things at the top of my lungs. I therefore have a policy of not interfering with community discourse unless things escalate to a point where a simple /ignore command cannot solve the issue.

Throughout most of the internet, vtuber fans have a terrible reputation. We are to many people what furries used to be before Something Awful became pozzed. In fairness, the stereotype of the vtuber fan as a creepy parasocial virgin is proved true by many examples, including ones documented in this very forum. Yet the Virtual Asylum stands as a testimony that this stereotype can be avoided. People can, in fact, discuss cute anime women with a bare minimum of feckless degeneracy. If I was forced to close this forum tomorrow, I would still consider it a success on this basis.

But, hopefully, I won't be forced to close this forum. Which brings me neatly to my next topic; community expansion.

As a certain wise dog once said; a community has to grow, or it'll stagnate and become the very thing it set out to escape. I made this forum to escape conformity, but non-conformity without challenge is just another form of conformity. Some people would like to keep this place a gated community, and in part I agree with them. I believe that standards on the internet have dropped horribly below what they should be. People expect to have their whims catered to and their biases reaffirmed. I refuse to do this. People may cross the border, but they must also assimilate.

In essence, I intend to maintain this site's unique culture, while also allowing new users with no experience of it to integrate and adopt our way of doing things through osmosis and well-timed reminders. I could lay out heavy-handed rules and regulations and punish people if they acted up, but that would just be laying the framework of yet another hugbox.

Keep in mind that my plans are not concrete yet, but over the next few months I intend to raise this site's general presence of the internet and give it an actual branding of some kind so people can find it faster. If I struggled this long to find a place like this, failed, and then was literally forced to build it from the ground up, how many other vagrants are out there? We already have an informal mascot competition going on in the forum discussion thread, and I love seeing that stuff. My passive nature when it comes to input on topics like this should never be taken as disinterest, it is instead an invitation for users to express themselves and feel that they're part of a community-driven experience.

Basically, my general tactic is to say that I'm going to do something, not give excessive details, then wait to see the suggestions people come up with. These give me insight into what people want, and let me make an informed decision without ramming a 'HEY GUYS I'M GONNA DO THIS THING, DISCUSS PLZ' style debate down everyone's throat. You are as engaged as you want to be. If you aren't, I'll tinker quietly in the background.

Originally I was going to have a whole extra section here about my future plans and monetization stuff. But then I started drinking, and then I realized how rambling I was getting. So instead I'll bundle that all into its space soon[TM].

Instead of the diving into the details right now, I invite everyone to take a minute to relax and enjoy what they've created together here. I hope to continue running this place until the giant meteor hits.

If you have questions, comments or anything similar, go sling them in the Forum Discussion thread.
 
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