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Tagged: disappointing, dying
bmxbanditMemberMay 4, 2023 at 7:53 pmPost count: 3
This is a step backwards. Although I’m apart of the club I don’t like the idea of a pool of knowledge being hidden behind a pay wall. There are plenty of folks with a wealth of knowledge that might not want to join up. There are several different message boards for these cars but I always considered Driveviper the PREMIER place to come. It seemed to be the most active and the most helpful. Message boards are a dying breed anyway. Most people use Facebook groups and chat now days. This just seems to be putting it to the grave faster. Disappointing to say the least. I appreciate all the hardwork but this just aint it IMO.
(posted this within another thread but I can’t be the only 1 to feel this way? so made it a standalone thread)
Michael KuchavikMemberMay 4, 2023 at 10:01 pmPost count: 9
Supporting the old technology became labor intensive and with lack of volunteers to support it made it harder. By putting the forum on its own domain and making it read only. The forum information is not lost, and we do not have to maintain the forum. So, it is a compromise for now.
NottaVetteMemberMay 5, 2023 at 4:58 amPost count: 11
Ron brings up a valid point and this recent change has the possibility of damaging this forums’ efficacy or future. But this action may be useful in the meantime to help the VOA regain some lost ground from the previous years in terms of manpower / volunteers, finances, attitudes, goals and membership. We shouldn’t assume this action will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back, rather we should give it a chance to flourish. Maybe it might lead to a chance for other options of membership or accessibility? Maybe the prior “enthusiasts” will pay to be VOA members NOT because they feel compelled to by a website’s diminished access, rather because they CARE for the greater good of the brand.
I believe our current board is doing a good job to keep the VOA solvent. I suspect the BoD (comprised of our regional presidents) had a vote on this and it’s not just one person making the decision. Let’s keep a chin up and work with the VOA instead of knocking down the current Board’s attempts to restore our association. I hope to see some modifications in the future to the accessibility of this site so that the passions and experiences aren’t lost. I suspect this will take some time (as all things do) and I’m willing to endure what needs to be done to help the VOA recover from the 2020/21 “explosion”.
Bill PembertonMemberMay 5, 2023 at 12:16 pmPost count: 10
I will politely disagree as we would just be going down the same road as in the past. VCA and then VOA often commented that keeping the Forum open would help folks see the value and then many would join. That did not work in the past and it has not worked now, the Club is not hiding the Forum and all the Technical aspects behind a Pay Wall, we are stating the value of being a member and having access to years of data. There is a large group of owners out there that left the site because it spends so much time on negative aspects that they left. Supposedly the Board is thinking of ways for past owners to become members and other ideas, but just going down the same road giving full access to folks who just don’t want to pay for a variety of reasons ( many which are frankly very weak ). Those of us who have been in numerous Car Clubs ( SCCA, NASA, PCA, local, etc. ) have seen the constant ups and downs of said organizations and it appears now that things may be on the mend.
Talk to your friends and let them know there is a new Forum site, things appear to be getting better, but the Club and the Viper History needs their help. The issue that they don’t want to pay is mute, because many don’t volunteer in any other way , and this can be their way to do that. Volunteering their funds , while others volunteer their time, we can all get back to celebrating the Viper. This is a Car Club , but it has also been a receptacle for years of knowledge and technical help so we need all to join to preserve the future — we all help each other.
Joining helps support the legacy and like any organization funds are needed to keep it viable. It is time for folks to be reminded that by not becoming a part they would be helping with the demise and when the data and specific info is gone they will have no real excuse. We are just a Car Club, that should be the only real focus and the Forum is a benefit to all . VOA is first and foremost a Car Club the Forum is simply a benefit and an addition to it.
Lastly, even though the new Officers had to undertake working for the Club after all the concerns, so many caused by the Pandemic or not acknowledging the problems it would cause, we might take a pause and realize they are working for free trying to clean up the issues. It seems like things are on the mend, so a bit of compassion is necessary and we need to support the positive aspects the Club has. Heck, if you are a Cubs or Red Sox fan you remember the years of support you gave never knowing if a win was ever going to be in the cards, it is time for Viper Owners to support this and to keep a positive outlook.
I would ask the Volunteer Officers to reach out to a couple of long term members and offer that they are needed to be part of the solution, but that means they need rejoin. Not much to ask considering we are asking to keep the best Viper resource in the World viable.
Thanks for listening and yes my glass is half full, but I also am foolish enough to believe many who have been frustrated still want things to survive so I am ask them to be part of that goal and join or rejoin.
bmxbanditMemberMay 5, 2023 at 1:11 pmPost count: 3
Not sure about the “explosion” as I am a relatively new member. I actually joined when I got my car last year. So from my perspective and having little to no background on the history of the club I’m not sipping the coolaid. From my perspective this is a turnoff for new members. I lurked here long before I actually bought my car. (Same with ViperAlley and VCA) I stuck around here and joined this group because this was the most active place. But lurking on the different boards was part of the learning process. Now that it is a members only message board it will be minimal foot traffic. Folks will go where they can mingle and ask questions to learn about the platform before potentially buying and joining. And if another site/club is more active that is what will gain the membership. Potential new members will see this as a closed off uninviting place. Seeing what is behind the velvet rope isn’t going to be tempting enough. Just my 2 cents as a new member.
Bill PembertonMemberMay 5, 2023 at 3:44 pmPost count: 10
Your comments are what swayed folks to consider leaving things open and it makes plenty of common sense. The issue is , though, it did not happen over the years and so many felt they never needed to join because they could get everything they needed for free. One can still read here and view plenty of data, but as a new member you have committed some of your resources to the Club and full Forum access. That is the key, you have more availability than just someone who wants to check up on things, and isn’t that what should be allowed to a Member — more benefits.
ViperSRTMemberMay 5, 2023 at 4:35 pmPost count: 8
Bill you appear to be a great salesman for this site (I hear Anheuser Busch is looking for some new marketing people). But I do not believe there will be substantial people taking the bait. There are many, many car forums. I am not aware of any that charge or require one to be a member at a cost to read or contribute. If this site hides behind a paywall it will become meaningless to all, members and disassociated enthusiasts alike. We will migrate to a free site that allows free communication and the collection of technical information we will seek at higher and higher rates as these cars age. With over 30,000 cars the number of owners far surpasses the club itself, and such the need for technical sharing is much, much greater for those owners.
Bill PembertonMemberMay 6, 2023 at 6:37 pmPost count: 10
I guess I simply see the value in helping this Club and all it does for the Viper, so becoming a member is such a simple move to help support the knowledge that has been collected. I think Members supporting everyone who does not want to help the Club is somewhat self defeating and there should be some privileges as members. I imagine the Officers will continue to listen to the current members and if changes need to be made I think they will listen.
NottaVetteMemberMay 7, 2023 at 5:54 amPost count: 11
Ryan, I’m not attempting to spread any notions of cool-aid and I thank you for becoming a member. Welcome aboard!! As you lurked the sites before purchasing your Snake, I suspect you’ve read some threads / posts / pages which may give reference to what I generically termed an “explosion”. And it should be considered as having learned from mistakes. I’m VERY passionate about the Viper and thoroughly believe that the VOA will be a continued resource and reason for it’s survival amongst the owners. We’re at about 1100 members now and it’s very possible for these numbers to grow as the new Board’s transparency and financial efforts continue.
I believe this site is still searchable / viewable by non-members and the technical information shared previously is still accessible to non-members. The main change that I’m aware of is that non-members cannot gain access to the members only areas AND they are not permitted to post questions / responses. As mentioned before, this allows the forum to be a benefit of membership for the membership.
Bill; LOVE your insight on the value in helping the Association and all it does for the Viper!! Keep that glass half full. Great idea to suggest reaching out to prior longtime members.
In general, suggesting the site may die out because of low membership numbers, or implying that the current members don’t have the same levels of experience as the prior enthusiasts / members provided MIGHT just happen. But it’s way too early to come to that conclusion. The concept that the community should come together to maintain the same level of expertise provided should be the compelling decider to resume or become a member. It’s not (so much) about the money in my opinion, rather the preservation of a discontinued icon. Though, it’s obvious that this Association must work with a budget to exist in the caliber Viper owners demand. Sponsorships and advertising need to be supplemented and things cost money. I’ll be that skipping record: Viper owners need to band together, remain a strong advocate for the car and provide some funds to enjoy their passion. I’d like to see the VOA be THE Association to be the preservers of this car for their drivers and collectors.
On another note, I’ve been a member of a Miata club (embarrassing?, yeah a little, LOL)…. but it was my first car club affiliation decades ago. And, ironically, the Miata was a pretty cool car to play with. Anyhow, it was a paid forum / club “way” back then. Of course, it wasn’t a lot to be a member (I think it was only $25 back then), but look at the difference in membership / budget potential. I don’t recall how many Miatas were build (Google says over 1 million) but I’m positive it was a lot more than Vipers. There are most likely less than 30k left of 36k Vipers built in their 25 year period. We have a diminishing car, Viper techs and parts. The resources available here and through here are well worth the $150 membership (or $195 if you want the quarterly collectable magazine). $75 of that is going back to the regions for their events.
Finally, I’m not one to try and sell a ketchup popsicle to a person wearing white clothing. Salesmanship is not my area of expertise. However, volunteers are hard at work here. Volunteers assisted by a BoD made of up MORE volunteers from the regions. People have donated / volunteered many reasonably billable hours of time, but haven’t billed. Sacrifices have been made. The term “this too shall pass” comes to mind and I’m optimistic with the future of the VOA. Let’s keep the rubber side down on the pavement and enjoy our cars to their fullest. Part of this enjoyment is the VOA.
Sorry for the length. I’m also not good at shorthand. LOL
PkB2014MemberMay 10, 2023 at 3:08 pmPost count: 1
Gees, first time logging in in a while, and now it’s this!? Yes, disappointing is a good way to put it. I loved the Viper for as long as it was in the world, but couldn’t afford one until Gen V. I lurked around and read all I could about it. If I had been forced to pay, I would’ve never come here. Sure all us old heads that have money now see this as no big deal, but the younger and/or less well off folks will be put off for sure. I suppose the Viper died in 2017 so there aren’t too many new fans anyway, but it seems like this is just another sign of a dying car and a dying medium. 🙁
JD03CobraMemberMay 12, 2023 at 1:37 pmPost count: 1
I understand supporting the old technology problem but why couldn’t the old forum data be ported over to the new site? This is pretty common amongst other car forums….or was the whole point to make the old data something you need to pay to access as a source of revenue?
Either way I appreciate the work!
Michael KuchavikMemberMay 12, 2023 at 2:52 pmPost count: 9
The reason for the change to new technology were many. The old technology combined with security issues, support (volunteer time) and money were factors. Just to move the VOA members over from the old platform to the new is a big undertaking for a limited volunteer resources. We are still helping people on a daily basis to get access. Since membership helps support the website, we owe it to them to work for them first.
So what we did is we moved the old website to a new domain so that we can keep it for a long time for its historical value. We made it read only for security and support reasons. By making it read only and not allowing new users it reduced our security issues and the need to support. We left access for people to message each other because it did not effect stability of the website.
So who is going to move the old forum to new forum. Our plan is to keep the old website and all the data for everyone to view and get the important historical data. Now that we do not have to support it with time on the back end it is easy to just leave as is.
We will be working on the back end of the new website over the next few months making improvements for operations of the club and launching new things to help maintain the Vipers.
The website needed balance for both members and all other Viper owners. We need it to have access for everyone but members needed a reason to join and by giving posting rights it added a level of membership benefit. We gave every viewing rights to see if this is something they want to be part of an join.
We are documenting the history of the Viper and everyone can see like Spirit of Viper program which honors the guys that built the car. We have the Viper Racing History website which documents the racing history. These programs are funded by donors and the time to produce is volunteered base on the love of the Viper. We are working on getting parts that are hard to get to preserve the cars. We have other programs in the works to help preserve the cars.
The club has a lot going on and the regions are a big part of why we all come to together and help each other.
The financials are in great shape now but volunteer support is lacking. So things take time to get done. Today people want things immediately. The regions and national teams all need help to improve the club experience. So if you have some time I would reach out to your regional club and ask how you can help.
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