Slash Boxes

SoylentNews is people

posted by martyb on Thursday February 12 2015, @07:28AM   Printer-friendly
from the Happy-Birthday-To-SN! dept.

Exactly one year ago SoylentNews published its very first story: Welcome to SoylentNews!

And what a year it's been!

It all started with a posting at slashdot where an editor claimed they had "listened to their audience" about complaints about the new Beta version of the site that was being rolled out. Many noted that any changes were cosmetic — that it was the community that made that site what it was. And, in inimical nerd fashion, a "SlashCott" was scheduled from February 10-17 wherein the participants pledged to not visit /. for one whole week.

Others took a more active role. The source code for /. was originally made open source and was available on the internet. Sadly, that code had not been maintained and was several years out of date. Some intrepid souls labored long and hard to locate servers, coordinate activities, and get the code knocked into shape. The goal was to create an alternative site that was free from the manipulations of a corporate overlord.

That first story signified a major accomplishment, but the site was still unstable and many features were incomplete, non-functional, or just plain ugly. Many more days of implementation, debugging, and testing were to follow culminating with SN going live to the world on February 17, 2014: Welcome to the World of Tomorrow... Today!.

Much has happened since that nascent story first graced the 'net. There have been changes in our all-volunteer staff. We had votes for the name of the site. We implemented UTF-8 support so stories and comments can include any valid character. We incorporated as a Public Benefit Corporation — on USA's Independence Day no less! We have an on-line store where you can buy SoylentNews Swag. You can subscribe and help support our site.

By the numbers: Over 5000 accounts have been registered and nearly 5000 stories have been posted to the site. Each story is read from 500-2000 times by logged-in users, and approximately 10 times as many Anonymous Cowards. More importantly, nearly 150,000 comments have been posted by you, our community.

Today, we have a small but dedicated group of volunteers who keep the site running. They keep the OS up-to-date on our servers, maintain our Wiki, e-mail, and IRC channels. They add features and fix bugs in the SN code base. Others edit and publish stories to appear on the site. We have a Board of Directors who take care of the legal sides of things. A treasurer who follows the finances. And there are still others who help in a non-technical, but just as necessary capacity in keeping the site humming along.

So, hats off to all who have helped build this site to what it is today!

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Phoenix666 on Thursday February 12 2015, @02:04PM

    by Phoenix666 (552) on Thursday February 12 2015, @02:04PM (#144103) Journal

    SN feels older than a year, because it feels the same as Slashdot once was years ago. It is the full inheritor of that legacy. It has in its first year, though, improved on the best that Slashdot ever was, with its modifications to the moderating system (still the best thing to guide and focus discourse and collective action that I've ever seen anywhere); and I feel sure SN is just getting warmed up.

    Like others, I haven't visited /. since SN came online. Not once. I had been a big supporter of theirs for years and had even gotten to be on a first-name basis with several of the editors; when they decided to ram Beta down everyone's throats I pleaded with them publicly and through back channels to reconsider. They didn't, and the rest is history.

    From the first moment the quality of the discussion here was high, clearer and better than it had been for a decade at Slashdot. And it has been gratifying to see the numbers and engagement of the SN community steadily grow. It's not only growing into a vibrant tech news community, but I suspect a lot of world-changing projects will take flight from here as its members talk, brainstorm, and begin to collaborate. There's that sort of heady atmosphere here.

    My wish for the future of SN is to continue its trajectory as a public mission inspired and challenged by vigorous discussion, to never give in to the siren song of the's of the world. Function over form, forever!

    Washington DC delenda est.
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