Though for some reason it doesn't say so, I am also an 11+ year UBB user, supporter and lifetime licensee. I also have credits enough to have had Rick do the upgrade to get the nearly million posts on my board safely and painlessly over into the new version which we've all been waiting for. I started my own org. with 60 people and have led it to over 50K members in 13 years and I can't imagine the pain it would put me through to let go of it for any reason, so we should all have some sympathy for Rick on this. This has been his baby and now he's handing it off. I wish him the best. It has to be gut wrenching.
I am also very worried about my own investment (not money, but trust) in this format/product because it's so critical to the 20K or so members (nearly 40% of my membership) and thousands of daily surfers by who visit my board. It's important in our industry to protect people from scam artists and misinformation and I worry that a new company may not even be able to offer the same updating and safety net for our data which is beyond critical for us. I am less concerned about the obvious PR gaffes here and more concerned that a new owner is letting some of his longest timed veteran users swing in the wind after posting his (or her) first name only and when seeing what is posted here, not coming back STRONG to quell our fears. I mean seriously, if you aren't worried about those folks who are the biggest apostles for the products name and reputation, what hope is there for everyone else? I've been promising and re-promising our members all these new and coming soon updates for way too long and I am geting heat now and it's hurting my own credibility. Perhaps I shouldn't have trusted the info and promises we were getting here, but I admit I made that mistake based on more than a decade long relationship.
So Mr/Mz Brooks, can you please step up as our new user community leader and holder of the future of our use of this critical tool and give us a bit of hope for the future? If Rick felt the need to come out with this info, I have to think that you as the new owner weren't blindsided by it. But you're really only fanning the flames here instead of at least communicating. And why the secret as to who you actually are? When a void of info so simply offered is there, people, by nature, fill in the blanks, often with the worst case scenario.
I don't like change. I don't even like changing our board from version to version any more than I need to. But the features that have been promised are also those being DEMANDED by my members and I am losing traffic to Facebook and other sites because I waited to update from the ancient version 7.02 until 8 was coming out because way back when Rick told me to just hang on and go with 8.0. That was perhaps more than 2 years ago.
Thanks for the assurances (which I finally found on page 2) that our lifetime memberships would be honored. I am hopeful that you'll also be sure to not only update our boards based on remaining support time in our account (which Rick had assured me of) but also you'll make sure that our older pages continue to show up in google searches now. We've had a terrible problem with version 5.xx pages coming up in their old format which is non working so that when important older info is found in searches, people can't reply or engage from that page at all. It's always been a train wreck I had hoped could be fixed when we jumped to 8.
Brooks may be the greatest thing ever to happen. But I hope there's a customer relations person who can step up and put out the negative energy which is building. It's sad to see Rick's labor of love getting trashed due to uncertainty by some and terror by others. Sadly, I confess and a complete non-techie, the latter applies to me.
Brian Austin Whitney
Just Plain Folkswww.justplainfolks.org