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“Snobothehobo”, the owner of Lifeless Forums, http://lifelessforum.net/, is going to tell us a little bit about his website and his experiences. He is a first-year student in a private university. Snobothehobo plans to become an Elementary school teacher. (Note: Snobothehobo is not his real name, he didn’t wish to reveal his real name).
1. Where did you get the idea for your website?
If you look around on the internet, you’ll be very hard-pressed to find a legitimately good general discussion community that still allows people a good amount of freedom. I don’t mean any offense to any other administrators who run general discussion communities; I know that there are some really good discussion forums out there. However, most of the largest general discussion communities out there are infested with hateful people who simply enjoy using the relative anonymity of the internet to make other people who just want to enjoy themselves miserable. These communities are usually understaffed, and the staff members they do have tend to be highly ineffective. I wanted to make one that offered a good balance between freedom and not having to worry about those hateful people I mentioned earlier.
2. Why did you choose phpBB as the basis for your forum?
I chose phpBB simply because I’ve been using it since phpBB 2.0.3, and I’m very familiar with it. I don’t hate the others, but I simply think that phpBB is better, and it’s free. The largest forum on the internet (Gaia Online) uses phpBB2. That just proves how solid phpBB is.
3. Did you make the forum theme(s) yourself?
I created all three of the themes (Plain, Clouds, and Purple) available on Lifeless.
4. What other experiences with admin/mod/etc on other forums do you have? Do you have any other websites you take care of?
I have tons of experience moderating and administering communities. However, most of the forums that I moderated and administered have long been forgotten. In 2008 and 2009, though, I served as an administrator of Forum Advertiser. Then, in late 2009, I became a reviewer on Forum Promotion. I changed to the community team briefly in early 2010 and switched back to the review team before being promoted to content team leader. I also currently serve as a global moderator on Advertise Hotspot. I currently do not own any other websites.
5. At what age did you join your first forum?
I joined my first forum when I was only ten years old. It was a fan forum for Arcanum, a single-player role-playing game that I really love. Let’s just say that I wasn’t their favorite person. In fairness, though, the people there were really negative and hateful.
6. What is some information about yourself you would like to share?
I am a first-year university student at a private liberal arts college in my community. I’m studying elementary education and Spanish; I hope to become an elementary school teacher. My hobbies include spending time with my wonderful life partner, posting on forums, and writing, of course.
7. What are some ways you keep your forum community together?
My current community hasn’t had much in the way of conflict yet since it’s only been around for a couple of weeks. However, in the past, I have tried to avoid conflict within the community by getting everyone’s opinions and taking them all into consideration. I also do my best to eliminate any hateful people from the community. I’ll give reasonable people as many chances as I can, but if someone’s just a hateful person, I tend to be pretty heavy-handed on the ban button. Those types of people don’t tend to have a lot of allies within the community anyway (except with other hateful people, of course).
8. What is the mission of your forum?
The purpose of my forum is simply to be a place where everyone counts. I try to make everything as fair as I possibly can. On other forums, gaining notoriety within the community is generally reserved only for those who can spend tons and tons of time on the forum. I’ve rejected that idea. In this community that I’ve created, everyone counts just as much as anybody else.
9. How do you fund the site?
There really aren’t many expenses so far. Everything has been paid out of my pocket, but that’s subject to change if the expenses of running the forum increase.
10. What is the greatest challenge of administrating a forum?
The greatest challenge for me is definitely advertising my forum. I’ve just never been very good at advertising. However, I’m doing a much better job this time around because my wonderful staff is helping me greatly. Hopefully this trend continues.
Thank you for letting us interview you, Snobothehobo! I hope you enjoyed the interview process, remember to share the link to this with everybody to help this interview get the publicity you want!
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