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Forum: Story Recommendations

A question for Lazeeze

Wheezer

Are recommendations limited to only stories on the SOL family of websites, or may we recommend stories available elsewhere such as BTFH, ASSTR, Grynen Barit, Amazon Kindle, etc?

Lazeez Jiddan (Webmaster)

@Wheezer

I prefer that we stick to our sites.

While I have nothing against those sites, I prefer not to advertise other sites.

Crumbly Writer

@Lazeez Jiddan (Webmaster)

While I have nothing against those sites, I prefer not to advertise other sites.

Amazon, especially, doesn't really need us doing their advertising for them. Believe it or not, they're doing fine on their own, while the rest of us struggle to earn a dime. After all, it's not like someone couldn't just do a Google or Amazon search to find them anyway.

For SOL Authors who publish there, the authors usually list the books on their blogs, since readers often like supporting their favorite readers.

docholladay

@Lazeez Jiddan (Webmaster)

While I have nothing against those sites, I prefer not to advertise other sites.


Heck all those "Lost Stories" help requests which tend to find stories regardless of the site they are available on covers that portion.

ustourist

@Lazeez Jiddan (Webmaster)

Unless there is a moderator for comments (which I feel is against your general approach), what is to stop all the e-book bloggers and vanity publishers from coming here and promoting their own low grade material? Some are probably members already and a space for free advertising will soon be widely publicized and abused.
Personally I feel it would be better if it is restricted only to SOL stories and users are encouraged to report stories promoted that are not available on this site so the comment can be removed. I consider the last thing anyone wants or needs is a spam section on this forum, which it could easily descend to become.
The site already has authors favorites, the list of clitorides nominations, and several different lists of the top scoring stories, so the only recommendations not found in other areas would be the occasional hidden gem, self promotion, or off-site stories. I couldn't see the point of the request in the first place, and still don't see it would benefit the site or the users. Surely encouraging users to actually search the site and find out for themselves would be a better result than spoon feeding people with external sites to visit to (possibly) buy product rather than pay a subscription here. That could become of greater importance when more details are released about the SOL publishing that has been mentioned. Why deliberately harm your own endeavor?

Lazeez Jiddan (Webmaster)

@ustourist

what is to stop all the e-book bloggers and vanity publishers from coming here and promoting their own low grade material?


I wouldn't worry about it too much. The forum is equipped with text filtering, user blocking and other safety measures that can be deployed to put a stop to any abusive/undesirable behaviour.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@ustourist


what is to stop all the e-book bloggers and vanity publishers from coming here and promoting their own low grade material?


In the past Lazeez has had a fairly friendly response to what people say about other sites. However, when they blatantly use his site to promote there's and the expense of his, Lazeez has previously shown no problem with shutting them down. I think if someone makes a mild reference to another site, the way they sometimes do in the other forum thread, he'll let it go, but should anyone abuse the freedom, I'd not surprised to see the post vanish as soon as Lazeez became aware of it. Thus if we spot any abuse, we need only let him know so he can make his own decision on it.

edit to add: see what happens when you take too long to type a reply.

Crumbly Writer

@ustourist

Personally I feel it would be better if it is restricted only to SOL stories and users are encouraged to report stories promoted that are not available on this site so the comment can be removed. I consider the last thing anyone wants or needs is a spam section on this forum, which it could easily descend to become.

Generally, the only time other sites are mentioned are when someone is looking for a story and 1) can't remember where they first saw it, or 2) It's no longer on SOL so those familiar with the story tell the user where the author moved the stories to.

It's extremely rare for anyone to come out and say "There's this really wonderful story over on XYZ site, you should all quit what you're doing and race over there to check it out".

Also, many of the 'lost stories' requests come from those with 'free access' (often because the members are retired and living on a fixed income), and thus don't have the full search capabilities needed to properly research some of these stories. (And again, many search, only to not uncover anything because the story is no longer on the site.

Actually, I see these 'lost story' requests as ads for Premiere Membership on the site, as people frequently tell them "The advanced search functions alone are well worth the cost of advanced membership". Thus these requests might produce more income for SOL, rather than less.

Replies:   ustourist  Switch Blayde
ustourist

@Crumbly Writer

The comment wasn't related to 'lost stories', it was in response to the 'recommended stories' which was the subject by the OP and is a totally different topic.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

Actually, I see these 'lost story' requests as ads for Premiere Membership on the site, as people frequently tell them "The advanced search functions alone are well worth the cost of advanced membership". Thus these requests might produce more income for SOL, rather than less.


Actually, I see it as the opposite. Someone who doesn't pay for Premier Membership gets someone who does to do the Advanced Search.

docholladay

@Switch Blayde

Also those story request searches are not limited to SOL and the other linked sites. The results can and have at different points listed the found stories as being on other sites. This naturally widens the base of the search. I know my search skills are limited and I am probably not the only one with limited skills. The story requests gives a chance of others with the skills to help find a given story. Some of those I have looked at as well when looking for new reading material.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@ustourist

The comment wasn't related to 'lost stories', it was in response to the 'recommended stories' which was the subject by the OP and is a totally different topic.

And my response was: since it's not a major issue anywhere else, I sincerely doubt it'll be an issue here. I was merely listing the few times the subject of stories on other sites appears on the Forum at all! Surely that's instructive in regards to how it's likely to be handled here.

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

Actually, I see it as the opposite. Someone who doesn't pay for Premier Membership gets someone who does to do the Advanced Search.

Yeah, that's a potential problem, but as I said, I've learned over the years that many regular members of the site are older, often disabled individuals on limited incomes. They support the site as best they can, so I'm not against giving them a little latitude, as long as they don't abuse it.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Crumbly Writer

@docholladay

Also those story request searches are not limited to SOL and the other linked sites. The results can and have at different points listed the found stories as being on other sites. This naturally widens the base of the search. I know my search skills are limited and I am probably not the only one with limited skills. The story requests gives a chance of others with the skills to help find a given story. Some of those I have looked at as well when looking for new reading material.

Given Lazeez's qualms about advertising sites other than SOL, I'm questioning that behavior. I don't mind if the stories aren't available on SOL, especially if they've been removed from here so those looking for it can't find it, but I'm not sure I'd list alternate sites where it can be found.

However, if the author removed the story to publish a revised version, and then restores the earlier version, I can see listing the more recent version, even it's only available as a paid commercial product, although I suspect Lazeez may consider that a form of 'bait & switch'. However, since the story remains on SOL, I'd be willing for forgive such minor transgressions.

Replies:   docholladay
Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

I've learned over the years that many regular members of the site are older,


That seems to be true for the authors. I wonder if that's true for the general readership.

Wheezer

Well, I asked the question because I've found some very good stories and story series on Kindle - a couple on topic to questions I asked here previously and did not receive any new info about. Before I shared the author's names here, I wanted to clarify it with Lazeez. It's been clarified and I shall remain silent. :)

docholladay

@Crumbly Writer

Given Lazeez's qualms about advertising sites other than SOL, I'm questioning that behavior. I don't mind if the stories aren't available on SOL


Sure most of the stories are found on site, but a lot of them are not. I for one do not know how to search the wayback site properly for missing stories and other free sites are also a hit or miss for me with my abilities. But the searches let me take advantage of those stories and sites when someone finds requested stories. I still look first on SOL however, but will follow other links to see if I want to bookmark them or not.

Replies:   sejintenej
sejintenej
Updated:

@docholladay


Sure most of the stories are found on site, but a lot of them are not. I for one do not know how to search the wayback site properly for missing stories and other free sites are also a hit or miss for me with my abilities.


https://archive.org/web/ is a beta search engine for the wayback machine.

Just one problem; I tried what I thought would be a rare combination and got perhaps several hundred. Tried one and it found a lot of pages.

You are probably aware that they do not store every web page

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