One would think that a professional internet information aggregation and advertising company, that I assume some part of Vertical Scope purports to be, whose stock and trade is literally the DATA that it bought and bundled, paid for and promotes, collects and curates, advertises and distributes... literally... the data... the very currency upon which their business model lives or dies.... would be backed up. Ya think?
And they are asking you to remember, link by link, which question or thread in the Old FAQ you happen to remember, so that (and only that?) can be found and restored?
Can they not restore the ENTIRE Old FAQ, along with the ENTIRE old archives (in the original yellow Ford-Diesel . com template) from the back ups, onto an off line server, and then copy over that data as is?
That's how the old archive forums from the Jason Lester days were preserved, for years and years. There was a link on the right hand side of the screen that led to the old archived forums, and even though those threads could no longer be responded to, they were still very useful.
There is a certain energy that effervesces from enthusiasts when a vehicle is brand new and the latest and greatest thing going. As such the 20 year old content and data on 20 year old vehicles can actually be more relevant, detailed, informative, and interesting to read then the "newer" content of third and fourth hand owners trying to reinvent the wheel.
Restore it all, I'd say, even if as a read only link.
@NYB, The flaw in your thinking about the value of the info to the site owner is that they didn't pay for any of it. It was CONTRIBUTED BY MEMBERS OF THE SITE. But even if it was free to them, there is value in that it draws eyes to the site and contributes to their advertisement value (however that works here on the internet). If the info isn't here any more, people will wander off to where it still exists (competing sites).
I for one am glad that progress is being made in restoration of the older info. I used to be able to refer members to it, but that resource is currently unavailable.
This is the kind of thing that happens when the forums become a business and are run by non owners, they don't realize just how much the information is worth. This was made evident in the post where they say that is was outdated.
But at least we are making progress even if it is a few links at a time I'll take it. I'm not a web site developer that just looks at the bottom dollar but I do hope that they can get it back for us.
Do the forum owners/administrators believe that the new look and feel of the forum interface is what attracts traffic?
Do the forum owners/administrators recognize that it is the content contributed (yes, donated indeed) by the members that is the attraction?
I realize (and sometimes resent, in situations such as this) that the forum owners/administrators get to profit from all the freebies of content freely contributed by members. However, since Jason Lester sold the forum, this presumably means that the buyer (Vertical Scope) paid something for the old content of the forum.
So the puzzle is, why would the buyer bury the very content that the buyer bought?
Once the "new look" (migration to the Xenforo format) was instituted, the above link disappeared. That's one thing. But the double hurt, is that the content itself was removed, even for those who had saved the link. And this is not only true for the forum archives linked above, but also for the Old FAQ Section, which more TDS members noticed disappeared.
When this happened, the Administrator's only response at that time was that all that information was old, and as such "outdated", and therefore unnecessary to save.
This indicates a fundamental lack of understanding of the kind of information that folks seek from a technical forum on vehicles. The dismissive "old posts are outdated" perspective also suggests a lack of understanding about the manner in which folks go about finding information on older vehicles, and the "season" within which the best, most complete, and most accurate information about those vehicles is produced, which is influenced by the demographics and mindsets of the members who produced and contributed the content when those vehicles were new. And those posts are now old. Just like the vehicles the posts covered.
Threads about older vehicles that are fresh and new today are often the blind leading the blind, based on misremembered hearsay. It is rare and unusual for a 17 year old kid to be able to afford a $95,000 2021 Ford Super Duty Platinum. Ford's own disclosures of their marketing research suggests that Ford targets the 40-70 year old age group, folks with means, and life experience... not high schoolers.
Yet high schoolers can afford well worn, well used trucks that are older than they are. So they pick one up for a couple of grand and head to the forums to talk about it. Get it running. Fix it up. Mod it out. Their posts are the new posts that are said to more "valuable" by the Administrators, solely by virtue of their fresh and recent posting date. But these kids may not have the life and work experience, nor the money and means, to have been there and done that... exploring and explaining the mechanical nuances of the vehicles when they were the latest and greatest and greatest must have tool/toy for Ford's target demographic with disposable income.
That's why those older posts on older vehicles are more interesting. Those posts were new when the vehicles were new. They were written contemporaneous with introduction and evolution of the vehicle. They contain details that get lost over time, unless upheld by the memories of long standing members like @klhansen .
Thirdly, TDS is not the only website experiencing frustrations at the disconnect between Vertical Scope and the membership community. This frustration, and Vertical Scope's previous lack of response extending beyond a year, has given rise to other forums. Here is an example of an exodus from another popular forum that was purchased, and then altered, by Vertical Scope:
____ WHAT IS IRATE4X4?!?
Simply put, it's the new home for all the former members of the pirate4x4 forums.
Some of us have been on that site for close to 20yrs. There have been a lot of friendships forged, amazing tech shared and good times had over the years. Years ago, it was sold to a multimedia conglomerate that doesn’t care about its members or the wheeling community in general. Their business model is to buy prominent forums and use every ounce of ad space until the sites are unusable. After years of hacks, security breaches, lack of updates and more and more sneaky ads the new owners had already driven a lot of the members off.
Their “new format” in May of 2020 has typically been the final nail in the coffin for the numerous other communities they bought. Rather than fading into oblivion we dropped the ‘P’ from the URL, set up irate4x4.com and we all moved over here.
Same people, same attitude ... shorter name. ___
The website of TDS belongs to Vertical Scope. We have to accept that folks can do what they want with "their" property.
But the soul of TDS belongs to the members who contributed their time, talent, and content to it.
When you take away that content, you lose TDS's soul.