A Raythe Reign Forum: Y or N?

Kat says…

Occasionally, someone writes to us requesting that we set up a forum where RR fans can talk amongst themselves.  We’re always thrilled when people are so enthusiastic about the stories and art that they want to make it a bigger part of their lives (at least online!)

But we’re hesitant – and I’m going to be blunt, here.  This is why:

  1. We have a small staff and, because of that, run a very tight ship.  To host our own forum, we’d have to take resources away from the behind-the-scenes stuff we’re currently working on (new shop site, new Membership site, forging ahead into the future, etc.)
  2. We’ve had a forum in the past and no one used it.  The moderators, who are by necessity Members, also stopped moderating and disappeared.  (Then again, we were much smaller when this went on.)
  3. Our real issue is people, and the potential of inviting bad behavior from, well, outsiders.  We take great pride in our existing community moderation – basically, we set positive expectations for behavior, and they’re followed!  Our Members and readers are a respectful, empathetic group, but this is not true of the world at large…

One solution that looks good is creating a subreddit, but see point #3.  Because of my many years of being online, I (Kat) know better than to think we’re so awesome that we can change people’s behavior online.  That way lies madness.

Plus, reddit is all about judging, upvoting and downvoting.  And this is something that we just do not tolerate.  M/M readers are already judged and, often, “downvoted.”

So that’s where we’re at with the forum.  However, we are always open to hearing your solutions.  If you have a way to work around our obstacles, definitely let us know in the comments.  We’re all ears, because we always want to make our Members happy.

  • Kat

43 Responses to A Raythe Reign Forum: Y or N?

  1. susi September 8, 2016 at 6:08 pm #

    I vote for no, because I wouldn’t use it. Whether would I write or read. And I would prefer to see your limited time to save for important stuff like stories and pictures and book sales….

    I haven’t really enough time to read the stories anyway. And that makes me sad. If I have to use a forum on top – I can’t efford this time. I want to use every single minute of time to read the wonderful stories of you not to write in a forum.

    • ortiznancy5645 September 22, 2016 at 4:04 pm #

      will I vote no

  2. Chisie-chan September 8, 2016 at 6:13 pm #

    I also vote no. I. Wouldn’t use it, and I feel like there is enough of forum like use in comments and talking in chapter posts for example.

  3. Sabrena September 8, 2016 at 6:17 pm #

    Regarding point 2, maybe consider a bot as a moderator and if something happens and/or as needed a staff member or reader/mod can step in.

  4. Jennifer September 8, 2016 at 6:19 pm #

    I vote no. I would rather time be spent on the stories that I love reading so much. I also enjoy the positive atmosphere currently found at this site and do not wish to possibly see that change.

  5. FaereMage September 8, 2016 at 6:35 pm #

    It’s an interesting idea but I agree with the lack of time issue.

    I find that on any new forum, I start out posting and trying to stay active but after awhile I forget or get too busy doing one thing or another and before you know it months have gone by since I’ve written anything.

    So I would vote No. Save your time for working on something more important.

  6. Jennifer September 8, 2016 at 6:35 pm #

    I have to say no also I wouldn’t use it either.

  7. Reisuke September 8, 2016 at 6:38 pm #

    i vote no, cus i wouldnt use it, however it might be nice to have a fanfiction/fanart page where the fans could post their raythe-inspired works for critique and fun?

    • keith September 8, 2016 at 7:37 pm #

      If you have a Tumblr account, tag @raythereignfans whenever you post a fanart and I’ll be sure to reblog it there!! I’m trying to centralize all the official art and fanarts present on tumblr on this blog, so people can easily find it and comment 🙂
      The blog is there: http://raythereignfans.tumblr.com

      Otherwise what would you think about a FB group? People could post their fanarts there too and people could give their comments! People don’t use forums a lot anymore, but they all use FB.

  8. Natasha Barlow September 8, 2016 at 6:38 pm #

    i vote no as well as i feel that the awesome art and stories are more important as they are what keeps me on the edge of my seat waitinng for.

  9. Shay September 8, 2016 at 6:43 pm #

    The subreddit could always be by invitation only. But I could easily see it peter out after a while, like the forum, and I don’t want this to take away from your other projects.

    The only reason I would want a forum or similar would be to communicate with members outside of the chapter comments, where everyone is focused on the story. Maybe there should be an “introduce yourself” discussion post?

    Overall, my vote for the forum is no.

  10. Johnny 696 September 8, 2016 at 6:53 pm #

    I became a member to read and enjoy the stories and to form my own judgments about them. I am not interested in what
    other readers think. I am all for praising good work but not in the forum format. my vote is NO

  11. Samantha September 8, 2016 at 7:01 pm #

    I vote no rather get more chapters or something instead.

  12. Raine September 8, 2016 at 7:12 pm #

    I have perhaps an alternative solution. You see one big I dislike about the comment system on the site is that there’s a lack of notification. Someone may respond to my comment a month later and I would have no idea. I also don’t have the memory or time to scroll back through all of my last comments and find them all. If there was a way members could get notice of replies, or new comments on a story they’re particularly interested in (like having some sort of “follow” options), then I think this would facilitate much better discussion, without the issues of negative outsiders and hopefully less of a drain on time/resources. Not sure if this could work in practice though, I dont know enough about coding and building websites, haha.

    • keith September 8, 2016 at 7:32 pm #

      I think that would be a great addition, but would probably require a lot of time to code and implement~ 
      See my idea of a FB group below, which we could implement in just 10 minutes, and where we could have real conversation and not just about the last chapters 🙂

  13. keith September 8, 2016 at 7:28 pm #

    I VOTE YES!!!!
    Here are my thoughts:

    – I’d really love to talk to other members. We are a great community and I love reading everyone’s comments and interacting with you guys more would be awesome <3

    – The best could be a FACEBOOK GROUP. I'd love to hear what other people think about it, but with a FB group instead of a "real" forum, we don't need to spend time on design, we don't need to spend time creating various categories and categories into the categories, etc. In a FB group, anyone can start a discussion on whatever topic they want and people answer the post. It's a format I like a lot more than forums, because you can really "chat", like an informal conversation with short answers. In forums, longer and more formal posts are expected and I feel like that people don't like it as much. Personally, in the past years I've used forums less and less, and FB groups more and more. I don't know if it's just me, or a general tendency?

    – It's ok even if we're not 1000 people on it. I am in some FB groups where less than 10 people are active and we have great discussions.

    – I volunteer to be a moderator 😉 I've been on RR for more than 4 years now, I'm not going away anytime soon ^^

    – If other people like the idea of the FB group — I think we should make it a closed group, which means your FB friends wouldn't see what you post on the group (unless they're in the group too). That way you won't surprise your mom with a post about gay erotica ^^

    – If you prefer a normal forum than a FB group, I volunteer to help with the design and setting up the different categories, because like everyone else I wouldn't want Raythe and her staff to spend too much time on it when they already have ton of cool stuff to do ^^

    • Daisukianimexd September 8, 2016 at 8:34 pm #

      I like the facebook group idea but I think instead of a personal account, I would use a rp account to be in the group.

    • Nyxx September 9, 2016 at 11:35 am #

      Well I definitely vote yes too!!! I also so much want to talk with people as well as have a place where I can post my 1000 word character analyses and the like 😛

      Although, not wanting to over extend the staff or take away from potential existing or future content was the one thing I was pretty worried about. So I do think a fan run option would be best but of course it needs approval from the Raythe Reign team.

      I confess don’t know social media very well so I personally can’t judge whether Redditt or Facebook would be better atmosphere-wise, but Keith seems to have good rationals for Facebook so I’m inclined to believe him. Another real world group of mine created a subredditt for members to discuss content on and they are an internet well-informed bunch so I thought Redditt would be good but perhaps, in the context of this content, it wouldn’t be as advisable. Actually, now that I’m thinking about it myself, a Facebook group might be better for right now as a means of gauging how much interest and activity there would be because the start up cost (in terms of time & effort) are so little, unlike a forum, and it can be deleted if it becomes dead, unlike a subreddit.

      But, bottom line, I’m all for creating a free form discussion and connectivity space no matter what form it takes be it Forum, Redditt, Facebook or anything else! I would also volunteer to moderate if we should go down that route.

      I’m a bit sad seeing how many absolute ‘no’s there are. However, I think the small handful of us who want this to happen are extremely passionate about it and would work hard at it to make it work and be active enough to be the equivalent of many people!

      • keith September 9, 2016 at 3:47 pm #

        Nyxx, I love you!! <3
        (I'm female by the way. I chose the pseudo "Keith" at a time where I didn't know it was actually a common name for guys in the US lol, and now everyone is confused x) )

        Personally I like Reddit for when you want information. You ask a question, and the most popular/clever will appear first. But I've never used it to chat with friends or with other fans of a fandom… I don't think you can easily put emoticons (emoticons are importants!!!) and fanarts/fanvids on Reddit.

        I suggest we start a fan-run FB group, if Raythe gives us her blessing for making one, and those interested can join 🙂

        I'm not really sad by all the "no"s, they're expected. People are honest, they don't want to spend time a new forum. I have stopped frequenting all the forums I used to be active in myself. The RR fandom is the only one where I'd be interested — I'd say no to join a forum in any other fandom. So the large amounts of "no" is expected. But several people said yes so I think it's worth a try!!

        @Daisukianimexd: yeah I have 2 FB accounts myself ^^ one for family and work, and a "secret" one for cosplay/yaoi/geek stuff.

    • xXCrowFeatherXx September 25, 2016 at 5:56 pm #

      I vote yes too

      I would love it to write with other fans and I always feel so alone when I want to talk about these amazing books

      Maybe we can do something different ? A facebook page or WhatsApp group ?

      Or the people who want to write with another can do something together ? It’s difficult, but I would really like it if we could write together…

  14. macaroon September 8, 2016 at 7:37 pm #

    Mmm… Nay. But then again, I am for the most part a lurker.

  15. Pearlpaw September 8, 2016 at 8:12 pm #

    The way you lay out the situation makes me want to say no but I hate the current comment and fanart systems way of communication so I want to vote yes. As someone who also lives on the Internet I know that reddit is an awful place for m/m media and FB and Tumblr are only slightly better. But maybe as Keith suggests you could have other fans be mods and forum heads to take care of the forum for the authors. As for alternative forum sites I don’t know of any myself but I do believe in a better system of messaging than the one that we have now.

  16. Evilcleo September 8, 2016 at 9:13 pm #

    I agree 100% with your thinking. I wouldn’t use it and it’s not a good use of time for your already heavy to do list. Based on manga sites, the people come off so petty yet they think the site has to bend to their will and then there’s trolls and intolerant people….which makes moderators extremely busy. If people want to talk, they can use the comments section or this blog. The person who mentioned a better notification method has a point though.

  17. bell September 8, 2016 at 9:29 pm #

    I think, there could be shoutbox on your main site instead? I agree with you about forum through.

  18. Crystallynnc September 8, 2016 at 9:38 pm #

    I like the Facebook idea. I am already a member of a Facebook group for another m/m author. It is private for members only. We requested to join through the author and she personally approved each member. We are able to talk to each other and discuss the books as we read them. Spoiler alerts are posted to warn those that haven’t finished the books yet. It works really well since all the members are fans of the series.

  19. madhatt September 8, 2016 at 9:53 pm #

    I have to admit it is doubtful I would use it and I would much rather see your time used as mentioned above

  20. Methusleah1 September 8, 2016 at 9:53 pm #

    As an active forum user of multiple types and as someone who adores this site but can’t always afford membership, I like Keith’s idea. What is nice about Facebook groups is that you can make it so that they are invite-only and unable to be seen by your average user if you wish. You could make a closed or secret group and invite us by email. That way you can ensure that the only people in the group are people already apart of the community, and that any new people are directed to make an account on this site before being added to the group.

    • keith September 9, 2016 at 4:07 pm #

      A secret group with an invite by email is a good idea!! That way only members would join. We’d avoid 99% of the non-friendly people.
      Also with a secret group, none of your FB friends will see that you’re part of the group, nor will they see the name of description of the group or know that it exists at all. This way your grand-parents won’t see you are in a gay erotica novels group (in case you want to join with your personal/official FB account).

  21. Wendy Bird September 8, 2016 at 10:10 pm #

    I would read and sometimes reply in a forum venue if one existed. I would probably not bother with Face Book.

  22. Blaknite September 8, 2016 at 10:33 pm #

    No.

    While I enjoy forums I am usually a lurker and would not really post much. Heck this is the first time on this site to actually comment on anything. Though I have participated in clicking a box or few on various polls.

    I for one do not have facebook anymore nor do I want one again so a Facebook group is useless to me. And I don’t enjoy reddit or most of the site’s out there claiming to be forum like.

    I do enjoy however reading comments to chapters and these boggy posts.

  23. bratcat September 8, 2016 at 11:12 pm #

    I vote no for all of that. Forum, subreddit, FB group. I wouldn’t use any of it. I read for enjoyment, not discussion. Comments work well, in my opinion. I like simple. Lol.

    I would like an alert or something for when someone replies to my comment or an easier way to access your own comments and their associated replies. I know you can by clicking on your own username in a comment section but I only found that by mistake. Maybe a more accessible link to that? Or an add in to your member profile? If not, no biggie. Can’t say I’m much of a social butterfly anyway. 😅

  24. Leslie September 9, 2016 at 12:36 am #

    I would have to say no as well. Like many have said, I just wouldn’t use it. It’s not very often that I write anything, I spend most of my time wanting to read and look at the artwork. And I love the quality of the artwork and stories, it was this that caused me to get a membership in the first place and I’d hate to see that affected because of a stupid forum.

  25. Little one September 9, 2016 at 1:13 am #

    When I saw the email in my inbox. I thought “NO” straight away. Reason being PEOPLE and I wouldn’t use it. I have to agree with Point 3.

    Also the amount of staff power to watch the forum 24/7. Someone has to watch what is been said, giving out waning etc etc etc… a waste of staff time.

  26. Jordan_RiRi September 9, 2016 at 1:13 am #

    I also vote no to a forum, I am very much a lurker and very active on FB. I could see a closed or secret FB group being good for some people, maybe some fans could set up one like a fan group if they want more discussion but Raythe and your team won’t need to dedicate much time? I do also agree that the better notification system for comments would be nice though ☺️

  27. lenva September 9, 2016 at 1:33 am #

    I vote no. I don’t like the hassle of joining a forum.

  28. ckhafre September 9, 2016 at 2:36 am #

    I vote for no as well. I think the commenting system you have now is fine. I like how you also reply to our comments. Forums are probably too much work for administrators and too much hassle as well. You’d also have to deal with trolls and arguments (bad ones) between members- nobody wants that.

  29. Fara September 9, 2016 at 6:04 am #

    I vote maybe? I would not participate in a FB group. However, I used to mod/admin 5 different forums at the same time. As I got older and busier, I dropped mod duties and eventually the forums entirely. But I know the difficulties involved. I’d say what you need is a low-maintenance forum from a provider that does most of the back-end work for you (phpbb and vboard forums were once very popular because you could just get a template version and admins didn’t need to do any coding to manage them). You’d need member-volunteers to do the brunt of moderating while staff kept a weather eye so they could replace mods who fell off the map as needed. I wouldn’t advise a place like reddit – too much of its existing user base is vile. Better to create one’s own corner of the internet.

    The benefits of a forum over say, a FB group, is it gives people a veil of anonymity which is *good* for many of us. Likewise, the chapter comment system is limited – no notifications, so discussions can’t really happen, and discussions among the fans outside of the immediate story are untenable.

    On the other hand, I don’t know how active it would be to justify the time and possible money that would go into maintaining it.

  30. Fatty September 9, 2016 at 12:51 pm #

    Actually it’s not such a bad idea but everyone is voting no. Why don’t you add discus.com to your website? I’ve been using is for like 7 months now to comment on anime episodes and that place never dies. I’ve stopped using is because of the lack of time but whenever I go back to it I feel like I’ve missed so much. Tbh I’d love it if here was a disqus page on RR where people would post a topic and other people comment their view sitcoms be fun. But then again idk people are not supporting the idea I feel like I’m the only one ;-;

  31. Ipodpixie September 10, 2016 at 4:14 pm #

    I would never use this so I would have to say no. There are too many rude trolls out there just waiting to abuse someone.

  32. prettykitty September 11, 2016 at 1:29 pm #

    I vote no as well, cause honestly i know i will not read or comment cause i really hate when people are negative about my comments.

  33. Zigenbunni September 12, 2016 at 6:12 am #

    I vote no. I also wouldn’t really use it for the same reasons others have stated.
    On that note, what about creating a community chat on the Amino app? It’s public and free. We might even attract more readers 🙂

  34. DarkNari September 13, 2016 at 12:54 pm #

    I like the facebook idea. I think that would work out well.

  35. Dan's Wife September 26, 2016 at 7:19 pm #

    The only time this works is when an author takes a year or more to put out a story. Like Ilona Andrews. He/she (husband and wife partnership) have a huge following. I assume the publishers encourage the fans because their books go for $14.00/each. There’s a lot of marketing there. Now with one series they write a chapter at a time and ask for feedback on their website. That works well for them and then when the story is done they publish it. Some like those teasers and some don’t.

    So I would vote no if I was a part of your fans. I do a lot of reading, I am already on the blogs I’m interested in, and my time is limited. Authors that put out books quickly don’t need all that extra work. Usually it is up to the publishing company to promote an author and sometimes that’s done well and sometimes it’s okay. And with this genre there can be negative feedback – As we all know. So of course there will be monitoring. It’s almost expected.

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