Since many members may not be aware of the problems concerning limited bandwidth I wanted to address this to you all. We are having some problems with maintaining adequate cyberspace. There are many reasons for this, not the least of which is the great growth spurt the Forums are having. We are growing, but our shoes are getting tight!
There were a couple of real system crashes last month which forced us to do some quick housekeeping to delete old and useless posts that were eating up our cyberspace. Bandwidth is our Life, so this was very much needed. The crash was a wake up call.
Housekeeping means the moderators must go back the the oldest posts and re-read them all, and manually delete each entry that no longer serves any purpose. This really takes time. There is a great deal of chat that goes on in all the forums, and after awhile these are just echos that don't fade away unless they are deleted. They have served their purpose, and we NEED that bandwidth. Chat is needed, and we recognize that this is how we "commune" and is what gives us our community. But, once the words are spoken, and the communication has passed, the words need to pass as well, and quickly!
Until recently, I have been only editing entries on my forum more than 2 months old, but this is likely to change soon to daily chat removal, unless the conversation has some informative value to the community at large. I think this should apply to the other forums as well.
I hope that all understand that we intend to be primarily a Plant Forum, where we discuss plants, and how to cultivate. We cannot be a chat forum as well, there simply isnt enough space to keep numerous conversations running for any length of time. Emails vs. forum postings, or even PM messages are great for chatting, and don't take up any space or require any housekeeping (hint, hint)
If you are interested in helping conserve bandwidth (which is *not* free and is being paid out of pocket by the owners) here are some things you can do.
Do some housekeeping of your own. Delete out your PM message box, and also the copies in the "sent items" folder. If everyone did this, it would free up some space.
Do not use photos or graphics in your signiture. These are reproduced to every post you ever made by default.
Post smaller file size photos. Provide your email addy and if someone would like to see a larger photoyou can email it to them.
Limit your chat on the Plant Forums to on topic comments, and/or be understanding when comments like "Ohhhh, how beautiful" or "cool" soon fade away. Remember, every comment like that takes approx. 30 seconds to a minute for some mod to delete and there are *lots* of them. We all have other lives to live, lol.
Pat the moderators on the back for all their donated hard work to keep things running smoothly. Like the chicken that laid the ostrich egg said "It ain't always easy".
Ok, there's my 2 dollars worth. Anyone have any comments or suggestions to make?