So, I haven't been on the site in about a month at least. It would probably be safer to say two months. Real life gets in the way of things but that's not what this journal is about.
Four months ago I stopped really checking the site. The main reason? I couldn't figure out what the hell I was doing. Notifications seemed to come and go. Topics seemed to disappear. I was locked out of the general forum (some error saying that forum didn't even exist, couldn't find a way to fix it). Just today I decided to check back in and see what was going on.
Everything still seems backwards. Daunting. Unmanageable.
I can't say that I'm an OG member of the site, or someone important, or anything like that. I'm just an average user. I post in forums sometimes. I check in groups. I read status updates from people I follow or have befriended on the site. I watch a video or two. But four months ago I got so fed up with the site and how it worked I just left it behind. Even before that point in time I wasn't too active. The litany of problems presented in the way the site worked caught up quite quickly.
Five months ago someone sent me a friend request. I searched quite a few places for where it could have gone. Back on the old site it was easy to find. On this new site...not so much. Just today, coming back and dusting off my account and checking through all of my settings did I find it. It's hidden in the "My Settings" part of the drop down list, last tab. I have no clue why it's there. I can't fathom how it got there because it is in one of the most unusable spots I could have imagined.
It still seems...bad.
I can't say that I'm some model community member, like I've said earlier. But that's how I was. On the old site, I could reply to the few threads I posted it, give feedback to people, and do cool group things with relative ease. I can't do that now. In all honesty, I'm just hoping this journal posts and it might have some visibility.
Coming back and looking over the things that my dashboard shows me, going back in time shows me quite a few promotions for new Rooster Teeth stuff, like the MDB card game, Amazing Race journals, Lazer Team final crowdfunding reports, all from the staff I follow. But the most constant thing I'm seeing in the last week is the state of the community site from community members. Journals by a number of people, mainly aggregated by @Newbs. Journals stating the same things that drove me from the site in a fit of disappointment. Journals showing me that these problems are widespread. I can't help but see the two distinct tones in the journals from my five month absence. There's a very complex yet very warranted discussion going on in these journals.
This site is different. It isn't the one I joined two years ago. I joined and sponsored the site because I liked the content. I found myself increasingly watching more but also wanting to participate more. I stopped lurking after some time. I started posting in threads. I tried to make some decent contributions, avoiding posting garbage if I could. I found some cool people. I found some cool groups. I found the community aspect of the community.
I'm shy by nature and highly judgmental of myself and I've done a horrible job of trying to ingrain myself in this community. But I wanted to. This community, prior to the site change, even when I was just a new guy, was so warm and inviting. I didn't feel too bad about it. The groups of people all coming together and doing their separate things and doing their Rooster Teeth things was exactly what I heard about. I knew I wanted to be part of that and this place felt a little bit like home.
I did what I felt like my limits were. Fast forward to the new site. I've gotten over my shyness and some other problems. I've got it moderately under control. I started being active with other groups and communities that weren't Rooster Teeth. I've made some friends in other places. But not here.
I came back here on a whim. I didn't even plan it. I saw the Rooster Teeth spot in my homepage and bookmarks and decided to maybe see what was up. I'm seeing the problem and I know I'm part of it. But it's hard to fix it when the tools to fix it and the blueprints aren't in our hands. I'll be trying to get back into the site and my old hangouts. Maybe see if I can't attempt to reforge some friendships. But I fully know what has happened. It's a shame. The whole thing being broken...it made this place seem abandoned. I don't have stats but after the new site settled in, it felt like a ghost town. I didn't see as many notifications, I saw fewer posts, I watched as everything seemed to fall by the wayside.
It hurts to know that this is what it's become. We need some serious action to make this place the place it should be again.