Update: 10 March 2014 20:20 UTC. Follow here for the latest.
Update: 10 March 2014 19:10 UTC.
At this point Barrabas reports he is exchanging email with the buyer but refuses to say anything. Until we hear from them, we have to hope for the best but plan for the worst. If this link goes down, please go to the linode site where we will regroup. We will use that link as a fallback if necessary.
Update: 10 March 2014 18:30 UTC.
Barrabas reports in IRC he has received funds for the site and has sold the domain name. The terms of this sale, as well as its buyer, have not been disclosed. We await additional information. If you have information on this, please contact us at admin @ soylentnews . org
Update: 10 March 2014 16:30 UTC.
Due to NCommander's personal involvement with the situation he is recusing himself from negotiations. I (Mattie_p) am currently working with the staff to figure out how to address this incident. We have posted a poll which is available and should show up shortly on the front page.
We've been held hostage by John:
Working with NCommander
Am I The Bad Guy
Right now, I can't write a coherent response properly (I'm writing this from a Mac Store right now as some sort of response was necessary). Despite John's offer, we never used the Linode's he purchased for hosting slash, and the two services (forums and wiki) that were hosted on them were migrated. I had hoped that this would have been a private issue between me and John, to be handed by email with a proper agreement, but the site itself is now at risk.
Right now, I'm organizing a response with out staff now, but I won't be home for several hours so MrBluze is currently handling the crisis. He can hand off to mattie_p when he returns, or myself when I have proper net access again. John's offer does not reflect myself or any of the staff here, nor does he have what he says he has. The web server, dev server (fusion forge), and database were always hosted on Linode's on my personal account. John DID have access to the Linode account which was revoked when he left staff, but to my knowledge never had the root password or shell accounts on any of the boxes. That access was revoked. It is possible he has a copy of the database, I do not know for sure. He does not at this moment have access to any of the hardware powering the site. He does however control the DNS register and can possibly yank the site from under us. If that happens, I can send a mass email to every user account to inform them of what happened, and where we are now. We supposedly have until Friday until John drops everything in the trash unless someone pays him $2000 USD. As per the posts, I was willing to pay him, but I had some issue with the expenses as written (my emails are genuine, as is the email I received from John), but I'm currently in Asia, and have no practical way to send him a check until I return to the continental United States on Sunday; I informed John of this on IRC originally.
We're currently in scramble mode to try and organize a new name, and getting migrated as soon as possible. I was serious when I said I was done with the drama but it appears John isn't. I'm personally sorry to have to inflict this on the community, and if you wish to leave us, I shall not blame you in the slightest.
If the name is finally changed that'd be good news to me, even if it had to be this way.
I know it was the plan from the beginning but I am sure you'd have never gotten around to doing it (typical in software development: "//Temporary kludge -dev1" - a whole decade later: "//Temporary my ass -dev2").
I never liked the SoylentNews name.
"I never liked the SoylentNews name."
Because it was missing the logo of a basket of Soylent being delivered by a stork?
+1 I think the site is better off without the association of a recently launched commercial venture...
Well, yeah, that, and the association with cannibalism. I kept saying it was a really bad choice of a name for a tech news site (or pretty much any site except for an Anthony Hopkins / Charleton Heston fan site).
I'm glad to see the terrible name go, despite the unfortunate circumstances.
Slashback.org or slashback93.org or whatever the year the other side started. Or then again slashbeta.org
Fully agree.I've sent in a fairly cool name suggestion (as have others), but posting them publicly would only invite domain squatters. IMO we should have a panel of randomly selected judges (say 50 out of the first 2k UIDs) who would act as a sample of the user opinion, and can vote somewhere private on the suggestions. I'd also support a crowdfunding collection to buy out domains where necessary (2k-3k for unattractive parked domains, that is if nobody talks publicly about how they're candidates to replace SoylentNews), because we really should have all three of .org, .net and .com. I'd readily drop $100 on that (or more if really necessary) since the .com domain of my suggestion is parked (the other two are still unallocated).
With you there. The name is daft. Further, there are big problems with the UI. We came here to avoid beta but we've ended up with other issues instead. I know the retro nature of the site is pleasing to some, but for me it's too retro. We'll have a hard time continuing to attract new readers if everything stays as it is.
I rather like it, except for the red. I think a dark blue would be easier to read, but otherwise it is very nice and fast. The category icons all look nice and professional, much better than slashdot. And my Ghostery looks completely lost, as he can't find any trackers at all. :)
Not having that shit is awesome. I would put up a paypal link for donations and keep all of that shit off the site. I'm pretty sure most of us would happily donate $5/year or so to keep it running. Just don't have dorky banners like Wikipedia. :) Perhaps there could be a karma bonus for people who donate?