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T-ShirtForums Hits 50,000+ (now 239,000+) Members - or - How we got this far :)

 
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Old July 31st, 2008 Jul 31, 2008 1:30:16 PM -   #1 (permalink)
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Cool T-ShirtForums Hits 50,000+ (now 239,000+) Members - or - How we got this far :)

A couple of weeks ago (July 7, 2008), T-ShirtForums.com hit the 50,000 member milestone mark (in 2010 we hit the 100,000+ member milestone!).



When people find out about T-ShirtForums, many times they say "I wish I had found out about this site years ago before I started".

It may come as a surprise to many that T-ShirtForums.com launched 3 years ago on April 4, 2005. We welcomed our 100th member on April 21, 2005 and now, just 3 short years (and 50,000+ members) (make that 6 years and 135,000+ members) later, we have become the #1 online source for information about the t-shirt industry.

A lot of work has gone into creating this site and building a strong (friendly) community of t-shirt industry professionals and newcomers.

When people visit T-ShirtForums.com, they often comment about how different it is from other online communities and forums they may have visited in the past.

I put a lot of thought into creating something different that would really allow people to share, find, and research information about our t-shirt industry in a useful format. Something that would leave out all the drama sometimes associated with online forums.

I thought I'd take a second to explain some of our forum guidelines that help to keep T-ShirtForums a great place to visit

Why we don't allow "self promotion"/"advertising" or "offering your services" in the forum threads.

Many people have commented that they appreciate that when they come to ask a question or get help here, they are not bombarded by posts from people trying to sell them something. They just want opinions and experiences from other actual users, since companies or vendors are usually a little biased about their own products

By keeping the advertising and the actual forum discussion threads separate, members can feel comfortable asking a question about a particular product or service or piece of equipment and trust that they are getting answers, tips, experiences from other actual users who don't have a vested interest in the sales of the product.

This makes it a little tricky sometimes when we have friends/buddies/business partners who have a product or service that is being asked about, or that is relevant to the forums

Human nature leads us to want to "help out" a friend by giving glowing reviews of their product, but that can also sometimes present a conflict of interest if the member you're replying to doesn't know that part of your motivation for posting is to "help out a friend".

I have lots of friends So that's why you'll often see me recommend 2 or 3 different suppliers for a particular product or service. To keep things fair and to try to stay unbiased, I will also often opt out of answering "opinion based" questions about a particular product or service where I feel I may be too biased or where there may be a conflict of interest.

At the same time, it's great to get "factual" information, straight from the source. Sometimes a vendor website or product description might not answer the specific question you have. Going directly to the vendor and asking is always a great first option, but it can also help to try to get the answer from your peers here at the forums. At times, a vendor or manufacturer may answer questions that are specifically asked about their product so that you get actual answers from the source (still without a sales pitch).

When someone asks where to buy a specific product, it's fine to post a link to a vendor website or company that you've used as long as you're not getting a "kickback" for that recommendation and as long as you don't work for (or own) the company that you're recommending. Those type of recommendations can undermine the trust that people have when trying to get good sources for supplies and equipment.

On top of the conflict of interest aspect of self promotion, there is also the practical aspect. T-ShirtForums.com is a business to business forum of over 50,000 135,000+ members who all run businesses related to our industry. Imagine if we allowed every member to offer their products or services in the forum threads when people ask for help. Not only would there be lots of sales threads, we would also miss out on many of the helpful posts that make this place great.

Our goal is to have a friendly place to discuss the t-shirt industry. We also want to keep the "signal to noise" ratio to a minimum. What that means is that we want it to be as easy as possible to find all the helpful, useful, topical information that is posted here (signal) without members having to sift through a lot of off topic, spam, flamewars, unhelpful type posts (noise).

T-ShirtForums is what it is because of all of our helpful members who contribute to making this a great place to network, learn, and share information about the t-shirt industry.

If you've taken a few minutes out of your day to read all of this post...I THANK YOU. This community really means a lot to me, and I honestly learn as much from this forum and its helpful members as I share. It's a great cycle

BIG thanks also go to our forum moderators (currently: Solmu, Comin'OutSwingin, sunnydayz, and Girlzndollz) who volunteer their time to help keep things running smoothly here. 99.9% of the posts that are made in the forums are fine, but for almost everyone (including me), there comes a time when our posts may fall into that .1% that strays outside of our forum guidelines. It is those times where we do reserve the right to edit or remove the posts to keep things flowing smoothly, avoid distracting flame wars, and to maintain the overall goals for this forum. We try to be as fair, upfront and respectful as possible when that .1% happens and we hope that you'll extend us the same courtesy. If you don't understand why something was edited or removed, just ask us via Private Message, Email or via the feedback forum. If you see a post that seems out of line, don't reply to it, report it instead so we can take care of it
Stay tuned! We should be posting a huge giveaway announcement from one of our great forum advertisers within the upcoming weeks!
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Last edited by Rodney; March 16th, 2011 at 04:06 PM.. Reason: 2011 update :)
 
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Old March 11th, 2009 Mar 11, 2009 11:08:32 AM -   #2 (permalink)
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Default re: T-ShirtForums Hits 50,000+ (now 72,000+) Members - or - How we got this far :)

Although we're in our 4th year now, and we're close to 73,000 members...I thought the above post was worth repeating and rereading
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The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Rodney For This Useful Post:
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Old March 16th, 2011 Mar 16, 2011 3:55:31 PM -   #3 (permalink)
Administrator
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Rodney's Avatar
 
You can call me: Rodney
Member Since: Nov 2004
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Default Re: T-ShirtForums Hits 50,000+ (now 135,000+) Members - or - How we got this far :)

As we roll into our 6th year as the web's t-shirt community, I thought this post would be a good reminder of what we're about

If you'd like to help keep this place great, please read this post: https://www.t-shirtforums.com/announc...es/t35067.html
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Rodney Blackwell
PrinterListings.com: Find a company to print your t-shirts - list your own t-shirt printing company.
 
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Rodney For This Useful Post:
ashamutt (March 17th, 2011), BML Builder (March 22nd, 2011), MX1CAN (March 18th, 2011), scotney86 (March 18th, 2011), The Professor (March 17th, 2011)






This is a discussion about T-ShirtForums Hits 50,000+ (now 239,000+) Members - or - How we got this far :) that was posted in the Announcements and Site Updates section of the forums.

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