THE PEOPLE'S GUIDE TO MEXICO FORUMS: CLOSED!!

Well, we gave it a try but in the end our attempt to maintain discussion forums just didn’t work.  A few days ago we received the email below and as the saying goes, “the nickel dropped”.  Felipe is a long-time reader and supporter of The People’s Guide To Mexico.  We always appreciate suggestions and advice from our readers — and Felipe’s assessment of the situation we’ve faced with these forums strikes us as absolutely accurate.

So… in the next few days, I’ll pull the plug on the forums and dedicate my attention to this blog.  Thanks to all who participated in the forums!

Carl

Carl and Lorena,

I just checked your blog and it appears that you’ve returned. I was beginning to think that you two were, in actuality, a re-incarnation of B. Traven.

You’ve written that you’ve cleaned out the forum and will watch it for valid activity. Your original idea for the forum was timely. There were many fewer options available for online answers to questions about Mexico. Since that time, several forums have reached maturity and are useful tools in getting information on Mexico. One that I participate on is the Lonely Planet Mexico forum. It does perform many of the functions that I think you originally envisioned your forum to do. (Mike Warshauer is an active participant. Until recently, so was Bill Masterson.)

My two cents: Unless you are willing to monitor and work on your forum daily, drop it. You know how much work it is to maintain and unless you can devote a significant amount of time to the forum, I don’t think it will ever be what you want it to be. The Lonely Planet Mexico forum has paid moderators and an IT staff to maintain and update the forum. Those are resources you are never going to have.

I think that focusing on a blog as part of the main website is a good idea. You can add items and pieces when you want – much less pressure. Another possibility would be a periodic newsletter that would assemble pieces you get from readers. (I was a subscriber to the mailed version.) When you assemble enough material, declare it’s time for a newsletter and put it on the site. That way, there’d be no deadline that you would feel obligated to meet. I do think that periodic reader created pieces combined with your personal blog(s) would help to keep the PG site fresh and renewed.

It looks like my two cents expanded to a nickel’s worth of advice . . .

I do hope this finds you both well.

Saludos,

Felipe

One Response to “THE PEOPLE'S GUIDE TO MEXICO FORUMS: CLOSED!!”

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  1. Stephany says:

    Hey Carl and Lorena! Well I’ve just finished looking over your website and I absolutely love it!You have an expansive knowledge of Mexico’s rich traditions and culture. I would love to interview you guys for a feature story I’m writing for my college class, by phone. Would that be possible?
    Sincerely,
    Stephany