So, I was reading the SPAM post that is now locked from November 16th and it bothered me to the point that I would like to respond. I do not want to create an argument on this forum between anyone, so no reason to start one. We all know that I and every single person here has put a lot of time and effort into being a part of this community. Whether you are working on the code, acting as a moderator, making posts, or even just lurking, I hope you are doing it because you enjoy it and love the topic. When this site was created, it was difficult to find other Kite boarders in Chicago, figure out where they were going to ride, and to connect and inform others in the sport. That's the main goal, and that's why it's still here today.
Now, when this site was first created, almost 10 years ago, I was programming every day and it was fairly simple for me to make changes and update it over time. But, I got extremely busy with work and life in general, and will admit that the back end code for this site has been mostly untouched, save for a few major updates I have done out of necessity over the past couple years, primarily to combat hackers and spammers. Thankfully, during this time, we have had a great community of moderators and other users that have maintained the mission of this site.
I am so happy to see that everyone is still using it, and proud that our community of 3-5 people has blossomed into hundreds, if not thousands, around the Midwest and even the world. I feel like I owe it to everyone to keep this thing up and running, and given my computer background, am not happy with it being out of date. The problem is that as much as I tell myself I am going to make changes, I just never get around to it. As a solution, I am just going to bite the bullet and hire some developers. I have already talked with several people and am getting bids to update things and add some really cool features. I have lots of ideas in the works, but will see how much it is all going to cost.
Here's where you come in. My idea is that the community can help fund this, but only if you want to and care about it. If you don't want to be involved, or think this is a bad idea, no problem, you can keep on using it as if you never read this message. I don't think it's going to take a lot of money, so I'm going to create an option for anyone that would like to donate. It's going to be a clear and transparent campaign, and everyone that donates is going to get a say in what features they would like to see. My goal is to raise $5000 total, which I will match with my own money, for a total of $10,000 to be put towards site development. I know lots of developers, and we can get a lot done for $10,000 if it is managed properly. If nobody donates, I will likely just use my own money anyway, and do less, but would LOVE to see some people chip in to match it and get more mileage. No amount is too small, including nothing. If you want to put in $20, fine, if you want to put in $5000, well that is more than fine also!
100% of the money will be spent on improving this site, and it is going nowhere else. I hope everyone agrees that this is a good strategy. If you don't agree with this, and don't have any interest in donating, no problem. You will still get the benefits of the improvements we are making.
Please let me know if anyone has any questions. If you would like to donate
, you can do so here