IMDb message boards

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  • Announcement
  • Updated 2 years ago
  • (Edited)
Please see the text below from http://www.imdb.com/board/announcement

In addition, we have created a new Get Satisfaction categories for "I Need to Know" to replace the "I Need to Know" message board and "IMDb Poll" to replace the "IMDb Poll" message board. A post on the Contributors Help board explains the migration path from there to the newly renamed Get Satisfaction category "Data Issues & Policy Discussions"  (which is an already active community here). 

An FAQ on the closure is now available at http://www.imdb.com/help/show_leaf?boardsclosurefaq

IMDb Message Boards Announcement

IMDb is the world’s most popular and authoritative source for movie, TV and celebrity content. As part of our ongoing effort to continually evaluate and enhance the customer experience on IMDb, we have decided to disable IMDb’s message boards on February 20, 2017. This includes the Private Message system. After in-depth discussion and examination, we have concluded that IMDb’s message boards are no longer providing a positive, useful experience for the vast majority of our more than 250 million monthly users worldwide. The decision to retire a long-standing feature was made only after careful consideration and was based on data and traffic.

Increasingly, IMDb customers have migrated to IMDb’s social media accounts as the primary place they choose to post comments and communicate with IMDb’s editors and one another. IMDb’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/imdb) and official Twitter account (https://twitter.com/imdb) have an audience of more than 10 million engaged fans. IMDb also maintains official accounts on Snapchat (https://www.snapchat.com/add/imdblive), Pinterest (https://www.pinterest.com/imdbofficial/), YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/imdb), and Tumblr (http://imdb.tumblr.com/).

Because IMDb’s message boards continue to be utilized by a small but passionate community of IMDb users, we announced our decision to disable our message boards on February 3, 2017 but will leave them open for two additional weeks so that users will have ample time to archive any message board content they’d like to keep for personal use. During this two-week transition period, which concludes on February 19, 2017, IMDb message board users can exchange contact information with any other board users they would like to remain in communication with (since once we shut down the IMDb message boards, users will no longer be able to send personal messages to one another). We regret any disappointment or frustration IMDb message board users may experience as a result of this decision.

IMDb is passionately committed to providing innovative ways for our hundreds of millions of users to engage and communicate with one another. We will continue to enhance our current offerings and launch new features in 2017 and beyond that will help our customers communicate and express themselves in meaningful ways while leveraging emerging technologies and opportunities.


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Col Needham, Official Rep

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Posted 3 years ago

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coneyislanddreams

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I've already sent this to IMDb privately, and to Amazon as well, however I think posting it here can also do some good. It's worth a shot, at least.

Hi Mr. Needham, I just wanted to express my opinions (along with the opinions of the vast majority of people that browse this website) about your company's decision to disable the message boards.

In my humble opinion, the message boards are a huge part of why IMDb is so special and popular. The message boards are a place for me to express my opinion and to share my love of films, shows, actors, directors, etc. I am someone who loves old movies and shows, and I always turn to the IMDb boards to express my thoughts. The expression of my thoughts regarding film masterpieces makes me incredibly happy and is a positive outlet for others as well. To disable the message boards is a limitation of free speech, in my opinion. Although there are quite a few trolls and mean comments, as there are on every site, the love and positivity is far greater than that and outshines it.

Social media outlets such as Facebook aren't a place for in-depth discussion regarding obscure films. I've learned a lot from message boards throughout my years of using them. It will be hard to replicate the perfection that already existed. For example, one of my favorite films, Dogfight (1991), is such an unknown gem. I just watched it last week for the first time and I automatically turned to the boards for deeper analysis of the masterpiece. How would that work on other social media outlets?

There are many petitions already surfacing on the internet. These are two of the most popular: 
https://www.change.org/p/imdb-stop-imdb-from-disabling-the-message-boards 
https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/petition-to-keep-the-imdb-messageboards-going

Here's a copy and paste message that I've commented on every petition I've signed. 
- The message boards are an important part of why I like the internet so much: discussion. How else can I discuss, interpret, and analyze old films?

Many other people on numerous websites, such as Reddit, feel the same exact same way as I do. Although I don't know the exact statistics of your website, I do know that the message boards are a big reason why people visit IMDb, myself included. So if you can at least re-think your decision, it would mean the world to thousands of people. Even archiving the message boards will be a valued decision. Thank you very much, and may you have a great day/night!
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DTinHI

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Well said. Thanks for sharing with us.
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coneyislanddreams

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Thank you, and no problem. :)
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markfilipak

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Col, if IMDb eliminates Discussion Boards, I will stop buying on Amazon.

To Col Needham,

Movie discussions are vital. If IMDb ends the service, I will stop buying anything on Amazon.
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Col Needham, Official Rep

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Official Response
Thank you for the feedback.  We have gathered our responses in an FAQ at http://www.imdb.com/help/show_leaf?boardsclosurefaq which contains the following ...

IMDb.com's message boards will close on February 20th, 2017. The following answers address some of the most frequently asked questions about this transition.

  • Why didn’t you consider new boards software, moderation or other options to save the message boards?
    We considered many options to preserve the current message boards during our extensive review, but in the end concluded that they no longer provide a positive, useful experience for the vast majority of our more than 250 million monthly users worldwide. The message board software is based on outdated technology that is being phased out across all of IMDb, clearing the way for more innovation for IMDb customers.

  • What will happen to board content after Feb 20th?
    The boards and their content will be unavailable. If there is content that users wish to preserve, we encourage them to copy/archive it locally before the deadline, or to submit it (where appropriate) to one of IMDb’s content sections such as FAQs, trivia, goofs or user reviews.

  • What about all those discussions on smaller name/title boards?
    Message boards are always temporary in nature: content is not meant to be kept forever and can be removed for a number of reasons, including expiration (i.e. when a conversation does not see any activity for a certain period of time). There are some interesting discussions with content worthy of being preserved, but that content is better suited to being stored in permanent parts of IMDb (such as user reviews, FAQs, trivia, goofs to name just a few). This not only ensures that the information is archived forever, but also puts this content in front of a much larger audience, instead of the smaller subset of message board users, and makes it easily searchable across all of IMDb’s interfaces and services. Board discussions on the other hand are an unmoderated mix of fact, fiction and off-topic banter which is designed to be stored only temporarily, is scattered across a number of different threads and is only really available on our desktop site.

  • How will I discover opinions on movies and shows without the boards?
    IMDb remains committed to being the best place to discover entertainment content online and to help you decide whether to watch it. We will continue to have user ratings, user reviews, user lists, news, parents guides, personalized recommendations, editorial features, Meta Critic scores, links to critics reviews, FAQs and links to information/opinions on other sites. We feel that these features and the improvements we will make to them will provide a much better experience for our customers in the long term. This is all in addition to the most comprehensive collection of factual information around titles and people.

  • What will happen to my boards profile text?
    User profile information is not affected and will continue to be editable and displayed on the site.

  • What if I have a question about contributing?
    Our Contributors Help board is moving to a different platform hosted by GetSatisfaction.com. The same type of questions and topics previously suitable for the Contributors Help board can now be posted under the "Data Issues & Policy Discussions" category.

  • What else will be moving to GetSatisfaction?
    We have created new GetSatisfaction categories for "I Need to Know" to replace the "I Need to Know" message board and "IMDb Poll" to replace the "IMDb Poll" message board.

  • Will I need to create a new account to use GetSatisfaction?
    Yes: GetSatisfaction.com is a third-party entity and we do not share user registration data with them. Registering for an account there is very quick/easy (you can also sign up and login using a Twitter or Facebook account).

  • Does this change impact any other feature?
    The private message feature is part of the boards system so that will close too. Otherwise all other site features are unaffected. Users can still create lists, post user reviews, vote on titles and browse our content as usual.
(Edited)
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rotane

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No, i am not okay with this. Thanks for a reply, Col, but you didn’t hear us – or you didn’t want to. Posting an FAQ with content that we already knew is not helpful at this point.

Likewise, you talk about “new ways for the users to connect and improvements to existing features”, but unless these features are available right now, they are no adequate substitute for the message boards. And do you honestly believe that once (or if*) said features actually come out, the users will magically come back as well? I’m thinking not; people will have moved elsewhere in the meantime.

* I’m saying this, because your track record of implementing new features (or modernizing the site) has never been that stellar; progress on IMDb has always been made at a glacial speed. Sorry to sound so blunt, but that’s the feeling i – as a user – have always had, and i’m a user of 15+ years.
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David S. Issel

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Col Needham, you were smart to sell the site before you killed it.
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ginnyweasl

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Col,

Though you thanked us for your feedback, it seems you have not listened to us at all. Re-formatting the information you provided in your first message into a FAQ is useless and offensive to our intellect. We want action and true explanation. We want our message boards. We want you to recognize that social media platforms are not viable for the type of discussion we seek. You seem completely unwilling to work with us (the people who have felt a personal responsibility to contribute and better IMDB) on this, so for I and many others, this is goodbye. I will be cancelling my Pro membership, deleting the IMDB app from my phone, and (reluctantly) severing my ties with Amazon. I urge others to do the same. 

Thanks for nothing,

User of 11 years
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Justine Johnson

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Was devastated this morning when I read that the IMDB boards were being removed. Please don't do this! Social media with character limits and no organization is not a good alternative. I run my own website where my co-owner did the same thing, and facebook is an absolute mess to try to have a decent discussion and avoid repeats. Every movie, every show, every individual actor; I'd be on the forums afterward reading up on the things I missed and getting my brain going to come up with analysis I never would have thought of if I hadn't had a place to bounce the ideas off of. I'm so sad, because all of this outcry will amount to nothing. What a complete waste of a big part of what made IMDB great. Now it will just be a wiki site. I've been a member for 11 years and no longer have a reason to visit this site over Wikipedia.
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Klein Verzet

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We will continue to have user ratings, user reviews, user lists, news, parents guides, personalized recommendations, editorial features, Meta Critic scores, links to critics reviews, FAQs and links to information/opinions on other sites. We feel that these features and the improvements we will make to them will provide a much better experience for our customers in the long term.
Let's ask Albert:

http://welcometotwinpeaks.com/whatwouldalbertsay/


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Rod Neill

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To Col Needham - you spelt 'La la la la la la la - we're not listening!' wrong.

What I don't get is that you've made no attempt to update the boards in years so is it any wonder if their usage was relatively low? And now you're getting rid of them? Even the announcement seems to hold thinly veiled contempt for the users - 'you peasants aren't using these out dated tools in the way we want you to so now we're taking them away from you'. Well guess what you're going to save an awful lot of costs when your website goes down the drain. So well done. Slow clap.
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Zoppica

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The message board is what makes IMDB come alive. I want to know what others think of movies, episodes, actors etc etc. It's the reason I come on IMDB. I don't mind a few trolls here and there. I've been with you for so long, don't ruin this.
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Joe Toboni

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Increasingly, IMDb customers have migrated to IMDb’s social media accounts as the primary place they choose to post comments and communicate with IMDb’s editors and one another. IMDb’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/imdb) and official Twitter account (https://twitter.com/imdb)


Yeah there are lot's of Twilight Zone marathons and Clark Gable discussions on Twitter/imdb [/sarcasm]

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John Carey

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This is absolutely idiotic. I'm rarely one to comment on such things (even when I feel strongly about it), but this decision is indefensible, and I believe the vast majority of IMDb users who have frequented and appreciated this website throughout the years would find this to be utterly perplexing and frustrating. Yes, there's no doubt that the message board technology this site uses is terribly clunky and out of date, but nevertheless, I'm sure most would agree that having access to the vast amount of information and personal opinions available through the IMDb message boards is worth dealing the poorly-designed UI. And furthermore, even if you decide to disable the message boards, neglecting to archive the previous posts yourselves and instead expecting users to somehow remember every topic they once found valuable in the past and then hunt them down and save the information manually is incomprehensibly stupid and inconsiderate. Know that if you follow through with this decision, I (and undoubtedly many other long-time fans of this website) will have much less incentive to come here in the future. In fact, I personally will boycott this site (despite the wealth of info available) until the boards are restored.

For God's sake, listen to your users! I see almost NO support for this decision among people who use and care about this site. I am SO sick of companies that produce websites/software/etc. that unapologetically make these completely moronic changes that, as far as I can see, almost none of their devoted users agree with. Follow through with this and I guarantee your traffic on this website will suffer... in my experience, every company I've known that implements sweeping reductive changes like this eventually ends up REVERSING their decision within a year, having accomplished nothing but inconveniencing all of their users and ultimately themselves.

This sort of BS has become incredibly tiresome. I'd like to know if the people behind decisions such as this have absolutely no business sense, are completely out of touch with their core users, or just don't give a flying ****. In any case, I am sick of it, and I know I'm not the only one. Get a damn clue.

P.S. (to other IMDb users): If there is a petition against this decision (though, sadly, petitions rarely seem to influence the people who matter...) I will happily sign it.
(Edited)
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ginnyweasl

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There are a few floating around. Here is the link for one: https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/petition-to-keep-the-imdb-messageboards-going
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Kristen

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Will not use your site anymore once you shut down message boards.

Really disappointed in your decision to shut down the message boards. I've enjoyed visiting your website to discuss shows and movies with others. Once the message boards are disabled I'll have no reason to use your site, and I'm sure there are many others who feel the same.It's a shame, really. 
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Michael De Sapio

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled reviews.

Will the reviewing function (and the existing reviews we have posted) be still available even though the message boards will be discontinued?
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Gabriel A Sica

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled IMDb boards.

Andrew B. I agree with you MORE than wholeheartedly. What can Amazon possibly be thinking? They want to sell us their content, and then forbid us from exchanging our ideas on what they are making money from. I am seriously considering cancelling my Amazon Prime and switching to Hulu. What they are doing fits right in with Trump's Amerika.

Note: This conversation was created from a reply on: Shutting down the IMDb message boards is a terrible and small-minded decision..
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Andrew B

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Shutting down the IMDb message boards is a terrible and small-minded decision..

Eliminating the IMDb message boards will make the IMDb.com site a dead zone of no better utility than a worn out, yellowed and insect-infested TV guide from 1982. Lively, interactive diverse commentary is the lifeblood of the site and removing it will tear the heart out of a website that has become a veritable internet institution. You should really rethink this rather shocking and backward decision if you are an individual who is party to the message boards' imminent destruction. Social media is the modern alternative you espouse as a replacement, but like many modern and supposedly "better" things, it just isn't fun, nor original, nor better. Think about the cool and fun places that were around when you were a kid but that have now been replaced by the sterile, the corporate, the bland and the ubiquitous. THAT is what you will be turning IMDb.com into if you go ahead with this wrongheaded and misguided "improvement". You will hence be known as the "no-fun" website that drove millions away from your erstwhile succe$$ful Internet Movie Database. I hope you will reconsider this decision and continue the success that the message boards have built for you all along these years, because your alternative is a downright dud. Thank you for reading.
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Nobody

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled IMDb boards.

I am seriously considering ... switching to Hulu.
FYI:

In 2014, Hulu did what IMDb is doing now.  They shut down their boards!!

In Hulu's early years, they had boards on all of their show and movie pages.
Those boards were great! ... By 2014 they'd got rid of those,
and then finally they shut down their general boards too.

Even now, Hulu still has a forgotten announcement from 2014,
saying "several teams" would be working for a "few months"
to develop a "new discussion platform" for Hulu.  ...
I'm not using Hulu anymore, so I don't know for sure,
but up to now I'm not aware that they ever completed that.

Sure, go ahead and switch to Hulu if you want, but know this:
Once upon a time, they too killed their own boards!!

Note: This conversation was created from a reply on: IMDb boards.
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TheFrankSinatra

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Yes but Hulu....is not IMDB.    Hulu is just a streaming service, Netflix doesn't have chat boards either as...IMDB is actually the place people come to to talk about films...and then they go and watch it on Netflix or Hulu.  The IMDB message boards were actually serving that purpose for Hulu and Netflix...but now they want to shut it down....which makes 0 sense as there is no viable replacement.   So...not really the same thing.  IMDB is...the internet movie database...and THE place where people go to discuss films so removing or even considering removing their forums....is absurd and will never be a smart decision, and is not quite the same thing.   I think they will be forced to either reconsider or implement maybe a newer or different system, because the bad PR probably is not worth it for them.  They will be losing customers if they do it and killing  a major part of the site...the choice is theirs...
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Jeorj Euler

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I'm not sure what you mean, TheFrankSinatra. Netflix may not have "chat boards", but Netflix's DVD catalog website does, for every title in its possession, publish user's reviews upon submission. I believe the Netflix's Instant Watch (Video-on-Demand) catalog website may have this as well, but I could be mistaken, as titles do disappear from the catalog whenever they expire.
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Don

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Removing the message boards? Really?.

You guys are really removing the message boards?

This is a horrible idea. Absolutely horrible.

What's it going to take to keep the message boards alive?

They're the reason to come to the site. If you lose the message boards, you'll lose a lot of users, including me for the most part. There won't be much reason to come back.

Think about this before you cross a line you can't reverse course over.
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TheFrankSinatra

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Yep..I agree completely...
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Nobody

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Another viewpoint:
www.newstatesman.com/print/node/306688
(scroll down to article)
(Edited)
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wilson

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Thanks IMBD, time to say goodby to the Message Board.

I agree withe removal of the message board, while sometimes useful and
informative more and more it's become a platform for political views or
spammers trying to sell something.
Thank you all at IMBD for the platform when it was used as it should be.
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Brian

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Friends list.

I'm fully aware of what is going down on the 20th. Although what about the users that I have in my "Friends list"? Will that be gone as well???
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Tomer RRR

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Please keep it alive. there are more IMDB users that care about keeping boards alive than there are trolls
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Lisa Crumpton Stovall

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Message boards.
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ArghMatey

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled We are no longer enabling new accounts to post to the message boards..

Why can't I post to a message board? I have been a member over 3 yrs. and 8 mos.

NEW accounts!
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Guy Joubert

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This is a breathtakingly boneheaded decision.  It'd be like Hershey deciding to take chocolate out of its candy bar.
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Carbonated Margarine

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The message boards have easily been my favorite part of IMDB since I joined almost 17 years ago. Without those, the site won't be much more than a sterile almanac. Very disappointed.
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Matt Riley

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Please do not get rid of the message boards.

I have never logged in, but like the message boards.
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Paul Hawxwell

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This news makes me really sad.  These boards have helped me out so many times.  Trolls are easy to ignore.  This has solved so many questions for me for over a decade at least and allowed me to connect in an increasingly awful world with people and ideas that make life worth living.  Do not disrespect your fans in such a monumental fashion.  Simply put; it's wrong across the board.

This conversation is no longer open for comments or replies.