I am contemplating taking mudinfo.net offline.
I have spent many days, weeks, and months of my life dedicated to keeping MajorMUD alive through this website and the tools I’ve created. If it wasn’t for Nightmare Redux, MMUD Explorer, and eventually mudinfo.net after the disappearance of MMB/ForumsHQ, I believe the MajorMUD BBS’s out there and community surrounding it would not exist today. I have taken a lot of pride watching everyone use these tools to keep MajorMUD going. It’s been awesome seeing people create vast realms like MudRev and BearFather’s board. And even though it’s a slow process, it’s great seeing people create mods to share as well.
From all these things, I have received nothing in return. I offer everything for free and pay the hosting fees for this out of my own pocket. And that’s fine. I never intended to get anything more than the satisfaction of helping the community in return. Unfortunately, that pride and satisfaction has turned to frustration as I watch the decentralization of information to Facebook groups.
Time and time again I watch people ask the same questions over and over again. Recently the straw broke the camel’s back as a newly aspiring BBS sysop struggled to get WG/MajorMUD installed. He posted a long-winded question after obviously spending a lot of time trying to figure stuff out. The solution to this question was answered in *step 1* of my guide, posted on mudinfo.net, stickied to the top of a forum. This person didn’t even know mudinfo.net was still active.
More importantly however, was the nature of his question and the responses that followed. He was trying to setup his board on a VMWare (ESXi) host. Something fairly unique in the community. Within a few hours there was a number of responses. While none of them actually answered his question, which was sitting right here on mudinfo.net, it was good discussion. But guess what? In a month his post will be forgotten, buried, and no one will ever see it again because Facebook does not categorize posts and doesn’t offer anywhere near the search capabilities of a forum. Worse, no more than 11 posts below his, was a link to this exact thread on mudinfo.net... as the main topic of the post too.
MajorMUD is a small community. Right now there are 2 Facebook groups, a reddit group, as well as some other random pages/wikkis on MajorMUD. It doesn’t help anyone to have what little information and communication we do have spread out over various mediums. I realize that no matter which medium we choose, people will still ask the same questions over and over, but at least on a forum all of those questions and answers are *preserved, indexed, and searchable* to help people in the future and keep this community going. On a Facebook group people don't even bother searching. A) because it sucks and B) because it's simply not designed for searching in mind and it's not people's inclination to do so.
I have tried time and time again to make this point on the Facebook groups, only to get ignored, or even chastised for doing so. So maybe I’ll be the one to take the tools offline and allow the Facebook group to grow instead. As of now mudinfo.net is offline and mmud explorer and nightmare redux have been closed-sourced.
Hopefully something happens and I’ll change my mind.
-Matt, aka "syntax"