A few days ago Ernst Nathorst-Böös, CEO and founder of Propellerhead Software, blogged ‘An end of an era‘:
On January 22nd (2015) Propellerhead is closing our forums. When we shipped ReBirth in 1997 we were one of the first companies in the business to start up direct communication with our customers. Mind you, this was before the term “on-line community” even existed.
My first reaction was: what!?!? They are killing their own community?!?!
I am part of that community and feel connected to many Reason users all over the globe. Thanks to the forum, I met Reason.Fan (Eric Corminier) in France. And the Hungarian sample artist Andras Haasz of Pink Noise Studio I met in Amsterdam. I went to Stockholm to meet the Props. And to sign a contract with PowerFX. And Reason user Ed Gool who I often meet weekly in my hometown The Hague at Opuh Koffie (Open Coffee).
I was wrong. My first reaction was an emotional one. I believe the Props are right by closing their forums. Most startups today won’t add a forum to their website. Moderation is demanding a lot of precious time and money. Many people are making a fool out of themselves on the forums. And although I’ve always ignored the idiots, I can understand that the Props felt bad about it because it’s happening on their forums. I have seen many interesting Reason users leaving because of this.
Modern communication is happening everywhere, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Instagram, on YouTube. And moderating a bunch of idiots on your own forum is no fun anymore.
It’s time to take the discussion out of the kitchen and into the streets. Look up and meet the musicians of the world where they are.