Posting in the General section, but will eventually move this into the site news section.
So, we passed through into our eighth year of operations recently (we don't really have a "birth day" as such as we opened the site and tested it for a while before pushing on with a Return to Flight coverage in the Spring of 2005 - see "How this site came about, here: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=27711.msg847886#msg847886
The site is still growing in visitations, which is surprising given we knew there would be a hit from the loss of Shuttle missions. However, given the multitude of new vehicles in dev, we're gaining in a wider area of coverage.L2
: Our renewal rate is down to 92 percent, with the main reason being some of the shuttle mission only members losing their key area of interest, but our new L2 member rate is up as others find L2 viable via our coverage of SLS/Orion, ISS, and the commercial vehicles. I've also noticed a number of people joining L2 simply because they enjoy - and thus wish to support - the site, and that is the primary reason for L2, to support the site and help us pay the server invoices. The fact L2 members gain access to amazingly cool content is our thank you for supporting us, as opposed to being a standard subscription area. All L2 revenue goes towards paying the hosting costs.
L2 is now nine major sections, with 500+ subsections per the L2 cloud, 5270 gigabytes - so it goes without saying those who provide this site with content have my total appreciation and thanks.
Once again, thank you to each and every L2 member, as there simply would not be a site without them, and certainly not on this high end hosting package (remember the days when the site used to fall over when we went over 200 people on the forum?). L2 members are our lifeblood and yet they are less than one percent of the people who visit this site, so come on the 99 percent, support us if you enjoy this place as L2 pays for all of the site.
To join L2: http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/l2/Forum Moderation
: Our decision to move the Space Policy section into read only (L2 Members can post) has calmed that one "Wild Wild West" section down. We will keep it "as is" for the interim. The forum is still - especially compared to a lot of other forums, even of much smaller size - on the whole civil, but always remember to use the report to mod option if you feel a post is not becoming of the standards here. This is a big forum, with a lot of activity and posters - as much as it is dominated by guests, per usual for a forum. We are strong on moderation, it is never personal and it is for the benefit of all. Many thanks to the moderators we have on the forum.
Forum Rules: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=26624.0News site
: This is our front end, and visitations to it have increased year on year. We aim to produce no less than five news articles per week. The vast majority are exclusive in nature, given they are mainly driven by L2 content.
The proudest elements of our news site is its writers. I honestly don't think I could have a better team even if someone handed me a million bucks and told me to go hire people (Ok, I'd steal Bill Harwood, Jonathan Amos and Jim Oberg...but you get my point and they wouldn't replace one of my guys). The main writer pool is:
- Managing Editor - Anything pointy that goes uphill.
Pete Harding - ISS.
William Graham - EELV and Satellite Launches.
Rui C. Barbosa - Chinese Launches.
Philip Sloss - Shuttle and JSC and roving reporter.
Ron Smith - Shuttle and DC Area/Wallops.
And missing from the list under my name.....Promotion
: I'm using this to announce that Chris Gebhardt is now our Assistant Managing Editor. Totally deserved, he's been brilliant as my number 2, so this recognizes it. An absolutely excellent writer, and a great friend.Video and Image Arm/MaxQ
How good are these guys! Nate, Brian, Larry and Steven's advancement of MaxQ Entertainment (http://www.maxqent.com/
) is very impressive and their association and work for NSF is hugely appreciated. Along with Philip and Jacques they managed to grab 2.5 gbs of amazing photos and video for just the recent Discovery event and have been driving cool images into the news articles for years now.Opportunities
: We are looking to increase our coverage, so if you want to write for the site, send me a message via PM. Our main area of interest is with the commercial vehicles, MSFC local, etc.
We are also looking for an assistant webmaster. EDIT: Welcome to Aaron (Mapperuo) who's taking this up this role!Advertising
Many thanks to our loyal advertisers, some of which have been with us for years now: http://www.space-shuttle-mission.com/
- thanks Alex! We do have some very good placement areas available, so (the salesman bit), please contact me via PM or e-mail if you are interest in advertising on this site: http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/advertising/
- you get to speak to me, not some sales executive. Very hands on here.Plans
: Keep pushing on, pushing hard, pushing forward, basically!
We will be installing tapatalk, per request from those people who can afford smart phones (jealous). We're also looking at a store as people have asked for NSF t-shirts and stuff (wouldn't mind one myself). But the main priority is content, content and content, and we'll keep working hard on taking that forward during this very important period for the space program.
Thanks again to all of you who visit this site. Still stuns me how we went from an experiment of a site with a handful of people on it, to what we have now. Very motivating indeed!
Onwards and upwards.