LJ Angst

Feb. 4th, 2009 11:59 pm
cheeni: (Default)
[personal profile] cheeni
My pent up angst at SUP's management of LJ bubbled over and I let it fly at a couple of posts by SUP minions. I will reproduce it here for the fun of it, and because surely they aren't going to be strong enough to take honest criticism.

#1 - http://community.livejournal.com/cyberabad/149566.html?thread=2723390#t2723390

Dear [livejournal.com profile] rajikatalwar, [livejournal.com profile] team_lj_india and [livejournal.com profile] wpbenjamin,

Can't say I appreciate the spam. Your message just appeared multiple times in my friends view. Ever since LJ started the promotional spamming for LJ India with the shrill voice of a bazaar hawker I've been more and more tempted to leave.

You know LJ grew to be this big without any of this 'savvy marketing', and now all of this 'community building' is actually destroying the community. LJ doesn't have much going for it by way of features currently other than the awesome community. Drive the LJ loyalists away, and (believe me, you are certainly trying very hard), you will have a shell of a website that won't go very far.

If I wanted Bollywood gossip, India centric news or any of the other drivel that you are peddling I'd be blogging at rediff.com, seriously! You did start well with the caferati thing, but then you oversold it with over the top hype and promotion. I bet your signup stats look great from that campaign, but what you didn't see, or didn't bother to deem important was the frustration of the old timers.

If you must market LJ, at least hire someone who knows and understands LJ, not some marketroid like blogworks.in that's can't see beyond the instant ROI.

I want the old LJ back...


#2 - http://community.livejournal.com/lj_india/1531.html?thread=13051#t13051

Hi [livejournal.com profile] wpbenjamin,

You share some interesting information on your plans for LJ and LJ in India in general, thanks. I just left a ranting comment at a couple of posts [1], [2] where your minions from blogworks were messing about. And then I started taking a look at the LJ India community which I hadn't bothered to visit till now, and yours is the first post from the SUP camp that sounds intelligent and sincere. Plus, you also have a blog that actually has more than a couple of posts, so I think you will understand what I am about to say. I am bothering to put some effort into detailing what's wrong, I hope you listen.

First off, I appreciate the investment SUP is putting into LJ, hiring more programmers is good. I also understand that SUP has to make money. So far so good.

(Actually that contradicts with what I've read elsewhere about recent LJ layoffs, but your post is from a while back. In any case, you still seem to have money for stupid marketing tricks, ouch!).

However, hiring a marketing firm like Blogworks or any of the clueless bunch that are pimping LJ in India isn't going to get you anywhere. You will get a bunch of clicks, your marketroids will collect their cash and be on their way and LJ will have deteriorated considerably.

For example, read any of the posts that the blogworks team has made so far on this community, they are full of fake sincerity and enthusiasm. Seriously, it's not nice to see my LJ experience being ruined by a bunch of amateur shysters.

I count zero comments to most of the blogworks team's posts. You on the other hand got a single very helpful comment, and you chose to ignore it. What's the point of asking for feedback if you won't even bother to acknowledge it publicly and act on it?

You are getting some really good advise from people like [livejournal.com profile] angiasaa, (the other comment on this thread); you should think about implementing some of what he says, or hiring someone like him to help you with your marketing.

LJ has a dedicated band of followers in India, and they would definitely like more features and all that jazz, but they are here for one thing, and one thing only, the nice homey feel that LJ gives each of them. It's a personal thing that wasn't created by savvy marketing. It's also an exclusive feeling, despite the millions of users. Be thankful for having a good thing on your hands, something that runs without much maintenance. If you insist on continuing down this path of turning LJ into a commodity blogging platform, you risk losing what you have and not gaining much in return.

I have no agenda here other than protecting an experience and a habit that I picked up in 2001. That's right, it's been nearly 8 years on LJ and it would be a shame if I left now because of a bunch of less than competent marketers and ham handed management from SUP. Stop wasting money on the marketing and hire back some of the good engineers you laid off recently.

Seriously now, do it.


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