Taking it into the streets: Propellerhead is closing its forums

pufA 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.

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8 Responses to Taking it into the streets: Propellerhead is closing its forums

  1. Rimas February 4, 2015 at 10:03 pm #

    I’m shocked. I understand, but there were archives of info and contacts that are suddenly gone.
    Is there an archived forum online anywhere? I’d just like to access some messages and threads before they are totally gone. ):

    • Marco Raaphorst February 5, 2015 at 10:23 am #

      As far as I know there will be no accessible archives.

  2. Mooniac February 11, 2015 at 9:19 am #

    I think this is a bad decision. The advanced subforum was a *wonderful* resource. I just noticed it today, as I was about to ask a question about a RE.
    – you can’t tell me that moderation is more work than handling additional ticket flow by the support group. For moderation you just glance over the posts quickly and approve the large majority of posts, and a few you kill. That’s less work than writing replies to additional tickets that will result as a consequence of the closing.
    – I’ve filed three support tickets so far, and the replies were useless. I was very disappointed by their support!
    – They don’t provide support for the REs. The REs are not their products. I have a question about a RE that I now can’t get answered.
    – The providers of the REs usually don’t provide support for their own REs. I’ve tried send one of them an email, and I got no reply.
    – Referring to facebook and other social media is not appropriate. Many people are not on facebook or Google+ etc.

  3. PAUL BARNETT March 5, 2015 at 8:59 pm #

    After upgrading to reason 8 . I see way reason is closing their forum.
    Listen to my horror story. I used reason since 3.0.
    This is what I sent to reason support::
    You need to take reason 8.0 off the market immediately.
    For 3 years I was hesitant and afraid to upgrade from 6.5.3 to any new version.
    My fears has come true in 8.0.
    In 8.0 there is no preview of sounds any more.
    I upgraded from 6.5.3 to 8.0 and immediately could no longer write songs with the ease of 6.5.3 that has sound preview.
    And every old song that I opened and saved in 8.1 could no longer be reopened in 6.5.3 after i reverted back in to 6.5.3 .
    So now I must uninstall 6.5.3 and reinstall 8.0 to play songs that was opened and saved in 8.0
    and uninstall 8.0 and reinstall 6.5.3 to write songs because it previews songs.
    I must go back and forth
    Is this a temporary bug in 8.0 that will be fixed in the very near future or is this your permanent version that I will never be able to record comfortably in.
    Is there anyway I can just copy the 8.0 saved songs and revert or save to 6.5.3 ?
    Please help here!

    • Marco Raaphorst March 6, 2015 at 9:40 am #

      Sorry to hear that. Did you receive a response from Propellerhead?

      Previewing sounds is possible for all audio (samples and loops) if AUTO is activated in the Browser.

      But you also mentioned preview songs. That’s not possible, never was possible.

  4. Carlito May 25, 2015 at 7:13 pm #

    I’m torn on this because the technical issues of running a forum are a lot simpler than they used to be although I readily admit that things like moderation can be a time sink. Also consider that the forums served as an ersatz tech support board. I’m guessing that the ability to make feature requests is also gone. To be fair though there are plenty of social media spots for people to post and share music so it’s not as if the absence of forums is stopping anyone from developing music. The props have a way to do that also by sharing songs or song elements for collaboration. I wasn’t a heavy user of the forums even though I’ve owned every copy of Reason since it’s inception. I would pop in from time to time, ask a question, answer a question, and then move on. I spent more time making feature requests than anything else. I like Reason and always have though I think it’s getting more like the other DAWs out there which is was somewhat inevitable. My suggestion would be to add modules that generate music, (beats, pads, chords), as opposed to creating a new synth module. I like to be able to create music on the fly and I used my own work over time to create tracks. But its great if I have a module or something that can generate some basic lines or beats. Sure, I know I can import loops and recycle them – I do this all the time. But I like doing say free form guitar recording after which I put some pads or beats – would be great if Reason could do this (Logic Pro X Drummer sort of does this but it needs more work).

  5. ShelLuser October 22, 2015 at 10:01 pm #

    Quite frankly I think the whole mentioned reasoning is bogus and only serves (misguided) marketing goals, no more. “times are changing”, sure, but fact of the matter is that the forums were still heavily used by dozens of people on a daily basis. If you wanted to talk Reason then that was the place to go. You mention moderation: it’s not uncommon to get volunteers involved, there are plenty of people capable /and/ willing to perform such tasks. And don’t underestimate what a mere ‘report’ button can do…

    The funny thing is that they even contradict themselves, more or less. So from the story it becomes obvious that they need to go ahead with modern times, social media is immediately mentioned. Ok, so, isn’t it also fair to say that blogging is also sooo 2000? 😛

    You can’t control what people say and share about your product, but if you spread them out widely enough (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube; there are plenty of people who are not present on all platforms) then you can also do a lot more “damage control”. Which I think is the only thing happening here. They claim that Reason 8 is the most successful version, yet in my surroundings I hear completely different stories.

    And well.. A blog where people can’t respond on the articles? Not even Microsoft does something like that, and we all know their reputation 😉

    • Marco Raaphorst October 22, 2015 at 11:07 pm #

      I guess the Props are very lucky. Users started a forum for Reason: Reasontalk. The users took care of it and I guess it’s working out just fine.

      I feel though that community is highly missing in Discover.

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