From all of the places I visit, and the various forum software platforms I know of, how many forums fail within their first year of operation? "Fail" meaning the forum or entire site is just wiped out/erased. I think it's safe to say that over 90% don't survive the first year, or are "re-invented", or are "indefinitely closedd", or "abandoned". That's pretty sad. I couldn't name one forum in the last 5 years that is a popular destination of new content that I want to join. The facebooks (for the geezers), reddits (for the young adults), stack exchanges (for the answers) of the world have ruined the idea that a small forum can really flourish.I think we all agree that that is the case. How long do the software companies keep this up? Don't new customers eventually throw in the towel, and decide that they really don't need to upgrade their community software with a new style, that they don't need to spend $50 on a new addon? I like some of the things that IPS is doing, but I don't see how that brings in more sales for them long term. I don't know what XF 1.1 is going to provide to bring in more customers. It just looks like existing admins just rotate through the various platforms thinking that the latest whizbang release is going to solve the problem of members moving on. You used to be able to start a community, invest some time into it, maybe pay for some advertising, and get a small membership started within 6 months. Most people with similar interests didn't need a lot of moderation, just a platform. That would be a succesful labor of love. Now the platform is commoditized. Nobody cares what software a site is running, who's server it's on, or what site it is. But nobody wants to have to go through a registration process to be put into a restricted group, or wait a certain number of days or posts to provide their input, or ask a question, lol. We've all been seeing this for a long while, I don't see it getting better unless there are massive, large scale, amounts of crackdowns on Facebook/reddit in moderation. Soon, I think third party forum software will be regulated to fringe groups/niches that are restricted from the social network norms of the internet. How do dark web communities work? Is there a naughty social network to join anonymously, or do those communities rely on common community software products.