It has been a long ride. I started this site over four years ago now, and we have outlasted every other forum within the same community. When I first started the site, I did so because I was banned from Onision.net. I was banned mainly due to the actions of other people, and not my own. Other people were insulting and harassing members in my name, and a lot of them were banned with me. After I was banned, Onision even censored my name and site URL, so that when you typed 'ragreynolds' it was replaced with 'bitter banned member'.
If I'm being honest, my ban made me quite resentful. Many members of the Onision forums left with me, many got themselves banned in my name, and many stuck around just to promote my new upcoming forum. I made ragreynolds.net with the goal of giving a platform and home to a community of people who could not freely speak and act the way that they wanted to on the Onision forums, in fear of being banned. I also took a moment to look at other forums I had been on, and I noticed the same kind of trends on those too. It quickly became apparent to me that most online forums are run by power hungry turd munchers, and they will abuse their power at any chance they get. Most forums also have this mindset where they want anyone who they dislike to be banned. Most forums are plagued with countless rules, and when it comes down to it, really most forums run in a way where the following statement is true: 'If I want to ban you, I will'. The rules don't tend to mean very much on forums you visit, because when it comes down to it, the people the community like always get away with things, whereas the people that are hated are banned for no just reason. I wanted to run a different kind of forum.
So I made RR initially with only one real rule in my mind: Don't post anything illegal. We had good times, we had entertaining drama, and we had colourful members. Everything went far better than I could have ever hoped for.
Then eventually I reset the site after a hacking incident. There were a lot of corrupt files on the site and a lot of issues with the general setup that I just wanted to be done with. I do regret resetting the site, but what is done is done.
Anyway, let me get to the point...
As of late, I've come to start thinking about why I even still run this site. All the other forums set up by other people in our community have closed down. RR has outlasted all of them, and by a large amount of time. I could run this site forever, and part of me strives to. However, I have come to realise that the only reason I even keep RR alive anymore is due to my own pride. When I first started this forum, a certain member (@GAR) made a post saying how this site wouldn't be around more than 6 months. He said that 'none of these sites ever last' and that this place was a waste of time. That lit a fire in me. Some of you might know, and some of you won't, but the thing that motivates me more than anything else in life, is when someone tells me that what I'm doing will fail. When someone doubts me. When someone says I can't do something. It's probably the one thing that actually does motivate me. Even if it's detrimental to myself, I will ensure that I prove that person wrong. And it has been detrimental to me. I have put lots of money into this site, and there have been times where I really couldn't afford to pay for the site, but I did it anyway. There have been times where I had to choose whether or not I wanted to eat or keep RR up. Buy my mother a birthday present, or keep RR up. There have been lots of these instances. But every time, I choose RR. As much as my drive to prove other people wrong and to stick to my principles is a valuable quality, it is also one of my many faults.
This site isn't completely dead. In fact, we have more activity than sites such as Ionic Forums had when they closed down. Sure, we're not that active, especially compared to the early days, but we still have people who come online every day, and we still have a couple of new posts every day. And quite honestly, I could probably drive more activity to this site. My presence and influence online has grown quite a bit since I first started this site, and even back then I was still bringing in people from all over. I have lots of people I could easily bring here to give the site a burst of life, but the thing is... I just don't care anymore.
I don't care about running a forum anymore. For a long time, running a forum was my favourite thing to do, and I enjoyed every second of it. But now? Now I really don't care. I still visit a few other forums, and I like being on those forums as a member. But I have grown tired of running my own forum. My heart just isn't in it anymore. We also have to look around at the current online climate and realise that forums are very quickly becoming a thing of the past. Most people don't care about forums anymore, and when IPS discontinued the chat room application, that just made way for the likes of Skype and Discord to take over even more than they already had.
So yeah, I'm going to continue paying for hosting, since I do have my other site on this same hosting plan (which I will be changing up and doing something else with). But my IPB license is valid until March. So I will let the site run until then, but when March 11th comes around, I will not be renewing that license, and RR will no longer exist. Obviously this is quite a lot of notice I am giving you all, so you will all have plenty of time to get contact information from anyone you'd like to keep in touch with, and you will have time to save screenshots of things you want to keep. ragreynolds.net will continue to exist in some way, but forums.ragreynolds.net will not. As for me, you'll still be able to find me on all the usual places such as social networks, Discord, and YouTube.
I'd like to thank all of the moderating/admin team. Even though I never really gave you anything to do because there were never really any rules to enforce and I did everything myself anyway, I do appreciate you guys being a part of this site. There is a reason you all got mod/admin at some point or another, and that goes for everyone else who was ever in those positions of power too. @Viiolai @Sappho @bryanna @SkyBlu @TokentheToken
I would like to thank all of those impure whores out there who posted their revealing pictures in the NSFW section of the site (except for @Theflyingcactus) you guys helped drive a lot of attention to the site, and you helped keep parts of the community active, such as @Tangytang @ArseRaptor.
I would like to thank @Erica for putting the final nail in my coffin on OFO. If it weren't for her and the other OFO mods, RR would never have existed.
I would like to thank the likes of @sheilamotko @Myvagmademedoit @The_Right_Honourable_Jimmy for contributing to the site as much as you have and helping to try and keep the place active. Even in the quietest moments, you guys would still post statuses, make threads, or start political debates, even if they never received any responses.
I'd like to specifically thank alakazam for all of his input over the years, and even though he isn't a member of this site anymore, I still appreciate him, and I consider him a friend.
I'd like to thank @Hanna @Protejade Darky, Lukas, and a couple of others for being my lackeys over the years.
I'd like to thank @Retskrid for being the responsible adult of the community.
And I'm fed up of typing now so I'm just gonna mention some other people I wanna thank for being here but haven't specifically mentioned already: @pxc @EndangeredShark @Nox @The-Jackal @Alfie @collatz @snoop @aren @Kendra @Justin13 @Saddam @Flying_Squirrel @Seeker @Zyde @lily @GeneralDingo @Seito @Kelley @Aimieee @Rara @Emilee @Snip @Raft @Mark @LeedWion @Ladyflatass @Cocoacody @CleoSelene @Oppi
Oh, and I'd also like to thank Flawed and Micah for being absolute janky ass cunt waffles and helping me grow as a person.
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