I’ve been publishing news, reviews, and all sorts of information at Liliputing for a little over two years. In that time, you’ve been an important part of the conversation. Users have left tens of thousands of comments with their thoughts, suggestions, corrections, and more. Without Liliputing’s awesome readers, I wouldn’t be able to do what I do.
To build on this momentum, I created a forum for Liliputing users in late 2008, allowing you to start your own discussions and talk about topics that I didn’t bring up first. But a while back the site was hacked and I traced the problem to the forums, which made it a bit too easy for users to upload their own code.
As a solution I moved the forums to Ning, a service that lets anyone set up their own social network, forum, and user community. But Ning is shutting down its free service soon. I don’t make any money on the forums hosted with Ning, but more importantly, looking at the statistics for the site, there are very few active members of the Liliputing community on Ning. While Liliputing receives over a million page views each month, the forums get just a few thousand hits, averaging just 37 unique visitors per day.
We definitely lost some members when we made the switch from a self-hosted forum to a Ning community. But ultimately, I think there are some other forums out there that are offering much more value for netbook users, including:
And so I’ve decided to just let the Liliputing Forums disappear. When Ning pulls the plugs on free sites soon, Liliputing will fade off with a number of other communities. On the one hand, this should be a lesson about signing up for free services — you tend to get what you pay for. On the other hand, I just never had the time and energy to build the Liliputing Forums into the kind of site that could rival Liliputing’s main web site as a resource for news, information, and discussion about low cost ultraportable computers.