Stop selling your user's information
#1
We see this often in the forum world, where one site buys the database of another site and merges it together. This has got to stop. When a user signs up for your site, they are signing up for your site – they never gave you permission to sell their data (unless you baked that into the terms and conditions, and in the unlikely event that you did, you're just a jerk).

STOP IT. IT SUCKS. IT'S SHADY. IT SHOULD NOT BE ACCEPTABLE.
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#2
This user has been denied support. This user has been denied support.
If you're buying complete forum and not just database, that is understandable. Brad, companies or any business in this world may get sold to some other party at any point; just how Ebay bought PayPal years ago. Or if you're just talking about selling databases, it's already not legal to just sell database without the complete package and MyBB here doesn't allow that I believe.
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#3
(2012-12-28, 05:04 AM)brad-t Wrote: STOP IT. IT SUCKS. IT'S SHADY. IT SHOULD NOT BE ACCEPTABLE.

Which is exactly why I was the one that bought Host4Post and not some other user. I had a fair idea of who each user was in my week or so of being an Administrator as it was. I was welcomed into the lead chair with open arms for this reason; I doubt that it would've been like that if someone else would've taken over.
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#4
Honestly, I don't think you should be able to buy user information at all. Buying a "complete" forum is BS. A complete forum is literally, a database, a theme, a domain (maybe) and a few plugins. Firstly, should we be allowed to sell on plugins? I'm fairly sure yaldaram doesn't want his plugins reselling - but selling a forum facilitates this. The same goes for a theme. Selling forums is a grey area, and not something I would like as a user.

For example, just because somebody has bought a whole forum doesn't mean that the new owner won't strip the data from it and sell it elsewhere.
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#5
This user has been denied support. This user has been denied support.
*cough* Quite a few successful mybb forums *cough*
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#6
It's not going to stop, and this thread unfortunately won't make a difference.
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#7
I'm more worried by the fact that one would want to buy a database and merge it into his forum, rather than the morality of selling a database. It honestly just doesn't strike me as a good strategy. I can imagine how a lot of people might feel confused when being redirected to a completely new forum (sometimes of a totally different niche, simply because the owner wanted to fill up his chit chat section) from another they used to visit.

To me it also feels a little dirty to merge posts from an alien community into yours. Some of your more active and loyal users may be disappointed to see it happen. Since they are usually on top of all the new topics and discussions going on, they'll know what's up once they see a bunch of random new threads pop up. Why not just grow your content organically?

The way I see it, the only real usefulness of buying a database is the huge amount of email addresses you can use in mass email marketing campaigns. Which is very bad business of course, probably doesn't help that much and is likely illegal I would assume?
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#8
Nah traffic does actually increase and it speeds the growth of your site (only if it's a decent database with decent content however), Philly I guess can vouch for that. I understand communities merging if the users on the previous community know beforehand, but to randomly sell and have it shoved into your forum is a bit classless.

I however feel rather proud that not a single post on WF is merged, but it was something I had done a couple of times on my previous board, and something many big-board owners have done (TE you're not innocent here either).
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#9
This user has been denied support. This user has been denied support.
I never merged any database or any forums either. Smile
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#10
I agree with Crayo. However, coming to Philly, he merged just 2 Forums to FK. CTF & UG. I don't even own a merged Forum.

But when you buy a Forum, having a similar niche as yours, it can benefit the users and give them a bigger platform.
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