Censorship of competing sites, do you block your competitors?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Online Community' started by cpvr, Jan 30, 2012.

  1. cpvr

    cpvr Regular Member

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    How do you feel about sites that are admin forums/webmasters and block out any discussion of other competitors? Do you think this is right? Such as, its their site, they worked hard on it, why allow others to come in and take their users?

    Or do you think its wrong in the sense that its a webmaster forum/admin forum - thus, they should welcome all type of forum communities to be posted and reviewed by members?

    Because basically I look at it like this - if you block the competitors link, users will eventually find the other communities whether its throw google or via word of mouth. Of course, it makes it harder to promote because you can't advertise directly to your audience - and have to use smaller admin forums to promote.

    But, I'm just ranting, what do you guys think about this? Is it ever right?
     
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  2. karoshio

    karoshio Regular Member

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    I think it's completely ridiculous and just stupid. Simply as that really. It simply shows you care more about having a big forum than being a nice person who just cares about people getting the information they need/want.
     
  3. Marc

    Marc Checkmate - Game Over

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    I don't really care what they do as it's the person's forum and their decision. You have the choice either to join or not, ;)
    The only time I'll ever have a problem is if it was never announced anywhere on the forum while I joined to put a link in my signature or advertise in a showcase forum ( if they have such a thing )
    Edited: For the above sentence, I forgot to say, "if they took action to remove the link/discussion"

    I'm guessing you're talking about TheAdminZone.. ( or whatever the forum is named / I think they stated it in their rules )
     
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  4. karoshio

    karoshio Regular Member

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    well I do think there policy on it is pretty bad but I wasn't directly talking about them, just in general.
     
  5. cpvr

    cpvr Regular Member

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    Honestly, what's wrong with this picture is that every forum on the web deserves to be reviewed - even if your site is in competition with that one. Why? You shouldn't hate on one niche just because you don't want to lose your members. Once you're truly a big site, your users won't just up and leave for another one. It's called loyalty.
     
  6. Brandon

    Brandon Regular Member

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    I know I’ve posted this before but I can’t seem to find it, it may have been on another forum but here goes..

    The way I feel about blocking competition on any forum, any niche, is up to the forum owner & they can do what they wish. I completely understand if some webmasters wish to do that and I don’t judge for that.

    It seems everyone uses TAZ as an example so I’ll do the same. I know that when TAZ first started up the owner or “startup team” spent a good deal of money and time on the initial launch and have since tried to limit the competition from linking from their site. This is done to preserve their investment, maybe too many people look at forums as a hobby and not as a business.

    You’re investing your time into a site; you want it to be around for an extended period of time don’t you?
    If you want to block your competition, it’s up to you.
     
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  7. Shawn Gossman

    Shawn Gossman Regular Member

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    I respect any forums that block competition, that is completely up to them.

    I myself have a different policy. You can advertise your direct competition forum on my admin forum whether is advertising sections, signatures and even in posts when it contributes to the discussion. However, you will be expected to allow my forum to be shown on yours as a well. If you block me then I block you :) I think that is completely fair too!

    Blocking competition to me is primitive anymore. It just shows someone wants to be #1 in the eyes of most and to me, that isn't a good marketing strategy anymore. Besides I want to give out the message that the more admin forums the better, because that means there will be more information for the forum owners who seek it. :)
     
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  8. Marc

    Marc Checkmate - Game Over

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    What if a member ( not owner ) from your forum links to a competitor that blocks competition? ( while the link was useful to the discussion at your forum )
     
  9. Shawn Gossman

    Shawn Gossman Regular Member

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    I would probably allow it based on the fact that it was a member doing it. I would just block the forum owner from advertising it theirself and of course direct advertising of the forum. Would that sound like a good plan?
     
  10. JustinM

    JustinM Regular Member

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    Well it is right in some minds, and wrong in others. For the admin himself he's competing with traffic. If I were in his shoes, I would block out any other competitor I had. If I was a member of the community, I would want just the opposite.
     
  11. ridwan sameer

    ridwan sameer Regular Member

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    No, its wrong. I Believe Any webmaster forum should allow others to showcase their sites. Ofcourse not upto the extent of spam advertising, but we join admin forums to help our site grow, to learn more about it, Why not let us showcase our site aswell?
     
  12. Shawn Gossman

    Shawn Gossman Regular Member

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    That is why I always think about the member first :) Because competition or not, its the members who dictate whether your community will succeed or not, not competition :D
     
  13. etc

    etc I should be busy.

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    Its ridiculous. I wonder if he allow people creating threads that complains badly about other webmaster forum and why a user got banned from other admin forum. If he allows this, then the admin really is ridiculous.
     
  14. Shawn Gossman

    Shawn Gossman Regular Member

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    That is something I try to deter from my forums....gossip. However it tends to happen anyways, thus human nature ;) Some of us cannot live without gossiping lol. However when it comes to competition, I tend to ask that it be quit :)
     
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  15. benjaminp

    benjaminp Regular Member

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    I can understand the arguments for an against blocking competitors, but personally it's not something I do, or ever would. In-fact, I actually encourage people to post links to their sites in my forum, related niches or otherwise.

    Forum owners should spend their time making their website better than the competitions, instead of spending it trying to find ways to stop their users from finding them.
     
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  16. Shawn Gossman

    Shawn Gossman Regular Member

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    Good post ben, if I may slight elaborate it... I think forum owners should spend their time making their forum the best community that they can make it be :) Instead of worrying about competition, focus on community building, your relationship with your forum members and having a fun and good time. :) Once you get into a competitive mode, the slightest change that reflects negative to you can really effect your view as a forum owner and make running a forum almost like a stressful chore. IMO.

    I just focus on giving my members what they are looking for and having a fun place to come to :D
     
  17. cpvr

    cpvr Regular Member

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    Ya, I agree, but it comes down to a point when users start to abuse this - by sending out PMs to your members to join the forum. Personally, I don't see a reason why not to allow competition posting - because it also brings you new and fresh content. If someone has something bad to say about another admin forum - or whatever, then it'll turn into good content for you because you might be able to rank for their name on search and things like that, thus increasing your over-all appeal on the market. It's nothin better than getting users from one of your competitors. I personally grew like that because one of our competitors kept mentioning and talking about us, that we just stepped up in put up more content. Those users ended up leaving the other forum and decided to stick around with us.

    One thing that I noticed is that some admins won't allow it because they're scared their users are going to leave, but if you have a good community, you should never worry about the users leaving. You should only worry about keeping them active, and getting things done and marketing correctly.
     
  18. Carlos

    Carlos Regular Member

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    I will block competing sites on my forum regardless of what anyone thinks.

    You want to grow in the world? Do whatever is necessary to keep your members on your site.

    Let me put it this way: Does it make sense to have CODForum on competitor CODForums? No. You want to steal my members? #@^& you.

    Stealing members is something a lot of admins try to do on competitor websites.
     
  19. AWS

    AWS Administrator

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    That's about as small minded as one can get. If your site offers quality content then your users aren't going anywhere. In fact if they visit other sites in the niche and realize your site is the best they will advertise that fact for you.

    You gain nothing from blocking competing sites. Believe it or not there is a good chance that your users already know about other sites in your niche and are loyal to you because your site is the best. If you're not the best you'll lose members no matter what your link policy is.

    Come on people. If you offer quality content and have a friendly atmosphere you have nothing to worry about. Your users will be loyal to you and will be the best advertisement you can have.
     
  20. Carlos

    Carlos Regular Member

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    Yes, quality is the best advertisement that any website can have, but this quality can be overshadowed by the competing forum and can result in members not staying there. I have come across a person recently and I kindly asked him not to post more than one like-minded, copy & paste threads to increase quality over quantity. Guess what? That person thinks other forum is better than mine because more members respond to his request for matchmaking than my forum. Now, more than likely, that person is going to be talking $#!^ about my site because he took my message with offense.

    [Removed]
     

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