Skip to comments.And yet another underground antifreeper campaign being conducted via freepmail
Posted on 07/17/2017 9:48:56 PM PDT by Jim Robinson
Received a copy of the message pasted below that apparently is circulating via freepmail.
In response, all I can say is John is my son and my partner in FR along with Chris and Amy. None of us make a six figure salary. I designed and wrote the original version of FR back in '96, but it was my very first internet project ever. It worked, but codewise it was a dog. And virtually impossible to maintain.
When John came in with me, he rewrote the software and made it work greater than ever before and included maintenance tools that were sorely needed. I never dreamed that a homegrown internet site could handle the traffic and the millions of posts that we do. And even including the few times when we were down hard for more than a day, over the last 21 years we have better than 99% uptime.
And later, when our growth saturated and used up all the resources of our original ISP, John designed and built our multi-server hardware system, negotiated a contract for sufficient bandwidth and installed it at the San Jose data center. I'm not a techie so the hardware and software are John's baby.
And he and Chris are planning on running FR after me and Amy are gone. We are not about to let it die, assuming there's still a need and willing members.
This is about 20th warning being circulated during the last 20 years that FR's demise was imminent within the next year. Someday they may be right.
Lastly, if the guy who wrote the message below thinks he can do a better job than we do, he should go for it. And, for crying out loud, if he thinks he's being ripped off he should stop donating immediately and possibly should start posting somewhere else.
I dont want to answer this question out in public, but I do want to answer it because I believe that many potential donors are in the same position. I have donated fairly regularly, but am becoming increasingly hesitant to continue on.
We see from the numbers that EXCLUDING expenses (collocation, bandwidth, legal, credit card processing fees, etc.) Jim (and I assume John shares) is pulling in a cool quarter million per year from this. Its his baby... he created it, he does what he can from home to babysit it... thats fine... more power to him. It seems that his son John is the other principal who does the running to the data-center when things need fixing.
I dont know how much John gets from this... but theres enough profit there for BOTH Jim and John to make a six-figure salary. John apparently already has a full time job... he gets around to FR issues when he can squeeze in the time. If someones getting a six-figure salary to mind a system then that system ought to be sort of a high priority, not something that can be squeezed in on weekends now and then.
It is what it is... but heres where its reaching the breaking point for me and I think many others:
Given the frequency of hardware failures, its becoming clear that it is now more likely than not that FR wont exist a year from now. Many of us have suggested that hardware upgrades are becoming increasingly more of a priority... theyre now imperative.
There in NO discussion of this even being considered. I get it that Jims a stubborn guy... no one likes change, and a migration is a scary project.
But, without it, this site is going to evaporate... soon. Hardware is cheap... he could get a pair of great servers for $20K... the software is fine, no need to spend a ton of money writing some fancy new system. Just replace the hardware with something modern. Get some of the many experts here to volunteer a few days to work on the migration.
A brand new setup would cost less than one months salary... but would guarantee that FR survives. If giving up one months pay to invest in the future of his site (and the future of his income) is too much to ask, then hold a special freepathon to raise it. I can almost guarantee this money, if it was known that it was being allocated to a legit hardware upgrade plan, would be raised in a matter of a few days.
Perhaps Jims plan is to simply squeeze as much money out of it until it dies, then forget about it... we dont know... hes not saying anything (at least publicly that I can see). If thats the case, he should at least be honest about the plan to the people hes asking to pay his salary. If he has a plan for the site to continue, then he would be better served telling his donors what that plan is.... that would encourage more to be on board with the plan.
I would hate to see FR die abruptly and permanently. The likelihood of that happening soon is becoming very high at this point if these outages and other hardware issues continue on their current trend. If thats NOT the plan, then I wish Jim would communicate to his donors about it and get moving to prevent that... before its too late.
An oldie but a goody.
The random blogging kitteh looks like me when I get going on a rant. Then I post it and usually find out I totally misunderstood the original post I was responding to
And, the money, yes I donate and figure it is either a nice profit to Jim and John, else poorly spent. Whatever, FR is not mine and I'll enjoy it while it is up and running.
Each time FR goes down, I do pause to ask if this is it's final gasp and where I go next, again, because I see or hear absolutely nothing to suggest there is a tomorrow. I suggest, respectfully, instead of bemoaning the tomorrow being independently discussed and created, do something direct with FR, explain there is a tomorrow.
It’s funny that someone would say, “This free service isn’t good enough for me. I’ll show them: I’ll stop using it!” and think that’s a “threat.”
You have many people who make Free Republic their second home. Everyone here wants it to survive beyond either you or ourselves. We also want to minimize hassle and cost for either you or John.
You missed a comma in there.
(It’s a joke...)
But storage for FR's database will have to be live storage i.e. solid state. I pay $25 / month for 250 GB of live disk storage at digital ocean. You obviously have far more data and can do the math.
You will also be somewhat RAM limited in their offerings (unless you pay more). I believe the bandwidth and CPU should be adequate, but you'd have to check the numbers.
There's no doubt the cloud servers and storage will cost more than your dedicated HW, over the long run. It is after all, a monthly fee for HW rental (virtualized HW at that). There are major security issues with maintaining virtual servers, namely that you have to be very careful about your admin access and that you have to watch for side channel attacks from colocated virtual domains with sloppy security. However the latter is not much different from the physical network attacks in a hosting center, just an added vector to worry about.
Another consideration is that the hosting service could decide to pull the plug for political or tech reasons (or pretend it is tech when it is political). Then you will need to have a failover plan into another cloud host. But so far I have not heard of political problems with Linode, Digital Ocean, or the others I have read about.
I just donated based on this thread.
Agreed - It has been pretty evident for a long time that Rush gets a lot of his material from here. Which, frankly, is a good thing.
What ever noob! ;-)
Now, can we get back to Jim's discussion? What have you to say on that?
Hey fool IT WAS A JOKE! Who appointed you the FR police?
Doesn’t matter what I think about JR’s post. He is going to do whatever he wants. If he was going to change his mind then he would of already done so one of the other 100+ times this subject has been discussed.
Feel free to not post to me anymore.
Lots of concern trolls and others who are not ashamed to get in our face about being the idiots that pay their way - I’d love to see a policy where one cannot post/reply until after a first donation of $5 or more and then only as long as a minimum of $5 a month was met.
I second that.
I don't know what FR pays in hosting fees, but It isn't cheap.
Somebody wants to complain about FR, they need to live in Jim's Wheelchair for a few days.
Id love to see a policy where one cannot post/reply until after a first donation of $5
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Even a buck..
Am sure a lot would drop off if they were charged $1
Naturally, I would like better response and reliability from the servers too, but I don’t care how much you and your family make...the more the better.
People who bring up profits in the context that you could use less to give them more usually aren’t worth listening to.
Yeah. I haven’t seen it yet, though.
Did not get the freepmail.
Of course, you’re getting trolled, Jim. Par for the course.
Means you’re successful.
If you monetized the site you’d ruin it. Many would leave.
You just keep doing what God intended, Jim.
Bless you and your family, TRUE AMERICANS.
Well if this putz is right and you're paying for support, bandwidth, legal, processing, administration and all the rest on less than $50,000 a year then you're in the wrong business. You could make much more consulting and teaching other companies just how they can accomplished such a miracle, too.
I do have to say that if the chronic technical issues were my responsibility, they would have been long ago solved.
Can’t think of any significant IT system I’ve encountered in two decades plus of enterprise computing in which this low level of reliability and performance would have been tolerated. Speaking perfectly frankly, if you ran a business-critical system in this manner for an operation in my area of responsibility, I would be forced to fire you to keep my own butt out of liability; it wouldn’t even be optional.
On the day I signed up for FR I was a junior programmer becoming a senior programmer. Now 20 years later I have a fair claim to be one of the most skilled and experienced business information techs on the planet. I’ll make one last offer to help then I’ll keep my peace on this issue.
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