Now we all have probably heard that the Mercury had hacking issues that brought about the changes that seem to have had quite a negative effect on membership and content.
It really doesn’t mean anything to users “hacker attack”, but when you are operating an Online Forum is is a daily fact of life.
...Possibly too much information, but the bottom line is once you have had to deal with maintaining a web site and rebuilding/restoring it after a few hacker attacks, you sit down and think about it. Why exactly am I doing this? Its not for money because it doesn’t pay. Its because I enjoy it, or at least I used too, but it won’t take a great deal of time before hackers will take the enjoyment out of it and then you will disappoint your members as well by changing or dropping the site.
Gray, I’ve run my own blog for years, and since moving to Wordpress have to deal daily with security issues and hackers. I’ve been a moderator of several forums, including the old Merc forums back in the Ed Skeel days, for about 3 months or so. I have some of the experience you’re talking about, and I honestly don’t buy that the Merc is exempt from criticism because they’ve had to deal with hackers. The truth is, if they were having serious problems, and they obviously were, they needed to call in professionals. Last we knew, someone who I don’t think has tech or computer training was checking into the matter, but nothing was ever fixed.
And of course, hackers on the old forum doesn’t mean the new forums are more secure. It doesn’t mean this new forum should require personal contact info; if anything, it should be an indication that our info should not be required, just for safety reasons. If the Merc is still refusing to get professional help, our information is at risk. My personal experience is that this risk has been downplayed by the Merc.
Yes, it is a big responsibility for the Merc. That doesn’t mean we have no right to criticize what we feel are problems, though.