The single largest thread I was participating in during this discussion was the classic debate about SLashdot's quality (or lack therof). Usually this means dupe checking, typo checking, broken links, etc. This has long been an issue of contention between me and some Slashdot Readers. My general thoughts has always been that Slashdot was designed and built to be an informal dirty gritty news site. Where mistakes happen. Where grammar and typos are normal. My emails contain typos. My webblog contains grammar errors. This is just how I communicate. I wanted Slashdot to be informal. Not spitshined and corporate like CNN or something. I love CNN. I read it every day, but I didn't want Slashdot to be CNN. I wanted it to be what it is.
I just don't understand why there are users who demand that now, after 5+ years of doing it this way, we change. We spitpolish the site. Have spell checkers and checking. WHy don't they just go read CNN?! Slashdot is Slashdot. Why should it change just because more people read it? And more importantly, don't I have a certain level of responsibility to keep Slashdot today consistant with the Slashdot that I created 5 years ago?
Certainly my interests change over time. Should Slashdot? If I had kids, would SLashdot have more stories about kids? Obviously there is no true answer to this. Slashdot is based on my personality and interests... but is that a relatively absolute thing, tied to my personality and interests at age 21 when I created the site, or does it follow me as I age and change.
Obviously there is no answer to this question. Its just something I think about sometimes.
The good news is that we have many new subscribers today. More new subscribers on a single day then since the day we announced subscriptions. Our costs are very high, and the declining value of banner ads hurts. But I think there's a balance somewhere.
We'll hopefully have a few more subscriber plums in the upcoming weeks, but
we'll probably let the dust settle on this one first