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  #1  
Old 09-12-2011
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Dead Souls in SN

I've never paid much attention to the membership numbers here. Right now it's up to 187,120, of which about 20% are "active" (whatever that means...)

However, I never realized (until I went to try and find a member's profile the hard way) that SN has apparently never purged its membership rolls. I noticed that there's a sizable majority (rough guess 80%?) that have identical join and last activity dates. This would seem to indicate they visited one day, joined, and never returned.

Any reason the dead souls can't be put to rest?

I mean, if somebody joined on 3 Sept 2004 and whose last activity was 3 Sept 2004, I'm betting they ain't coming back.
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Old 09-12-2011
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I suspect that isn't the way membership is described to the advertisers. Those lost souls are probably lurking without logging on........

Seriously, I did search a topic a while back and sent a PM to a member that I subsequently realized hadn't been logged on in years. It may help to time out somehow.
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Old 09-12-2011
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Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
I suspect that isn't the way membership is described to the advertisers. Those lost souls are probably lurking without logging on........
I lurked for six years (off and on, more off than on) before I posted my first message.

But I still made purchases from the Sailnet store even though I wasn't visiting the forum. I suspect that it's worth it to them to let the lurkers lurk or whatever they're doing while not posting, especially if it doesn't cost them anything to let the lurkers be.
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Old 09-12-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
I suspect that isn't the way membership is described to the advertisers. Those lost souls are probably lurking without logging on........

Seriously, I did search a topic a while back and sent a PM to a member that I subsequently realized hadn't been logged on in years. It may help to time out somehow.
OK, I'll bite -- so there's a quantitative difference between a lurker who has (but never uses) a username and one who does not. What's to keep someone from just taking a day to create hundreds of bogus members? Think how many "members" we could add in a couple of weeks! Would the advertisers even notice/care?

I'd propose a five year cut off for virtual life support -- that'd cull the ranks considerably.

(For those who haven't seen what I'm ranting about, check out any random page of the member list.)

Last edited by PorFin; 09-12-2011 at 03:56 PM.
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Old 09-12-2011
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Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
I lurked for six years (off and on, more off than on) before I posted my first message.

But I still made purchases from the Sailnet store even though I wasn't visiting the forum. I suspect that it's worth it to them to let the lurkers lurk or whatever they're doing while not posting, especially if it doesn't cost them anything to let the lurkers be.
Good point -- I wasn't aware you needed a membership to buy from the ship's store.
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Old 09-12-2011
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Good point -- I wasn't aware you needed a membership to buy from the ship's store.
I don't know that you need to register to use the store. It's just that when I found Sailnet I was buying or just bought my first sailboat and didn't yet know enough to do anything but poke around the site aimlessly. A year or two later I was ready to start buying stuff and my registration was already in place. Later on down the road, after trying out several other sailing forums, I came back to this one as the most useful, supportaive and active.

I'm kind of curious why it bothers you?
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Old 09-12-2011
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Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
I'm kind of curious why it bothers you?
I spent some quality time today trying to find a member's profile -- by looking it up in the member's list. I was greeted by page after page after page (after page after page -- you see where this is going right? Thought so.) of folks who dropped in for a beer years ago and never returned. After a (long) while it started to annoy me.

I get it that member numbers help make SN an attractive place for advertisers. I also get it that not everyone who joins wants to contribute (which is perfectly OK).

I'll be the first to admit that if this is what's scrunching my boxers, then I got no troubles at all.
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Old 09-12-2011
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For a time I spent about an hour every couple of days purging the list of 'members'
who, while not active 'spammers' joined for reasons undetermined (probably automated somehow) often with signature links to non related commercial sites or whatever. I'd estimate at the time there would be 10-20 such 'joins' every few days.

Never could figure out what they gained by 'joining' but eventually got tired of the thankless job of trying to purge them (also one time inadvertantly got rid of a legitimate join)

I suspect that a large number of the published 'membership' would fall into that category.

Your time based filter-out idea has merit, but that would be an admin function, beyond our capability as mere mods..... A more rigorous signup routine would likely discourage a lot of that too..

btw using the search function for the user will at least get you to a post, and then to the profile fairly quickly.
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Old 09-12-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PorFin View Post
I'll be the first to admit that if this is what's scrunching my boxers, ...
It was worth asking for that. Understood about the search frustration.

What annoys me more than people who post once or twice and leave are the people who clearly post only to promote their product (or agenda) and contribute nothing.
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