For your information the free Ning.com web page for our Kittson Historical Society has been discontinued as of July 2010. We are left with four choices.
1. Ning Mini - $2.95 a month or $19.95 a year but it is limited to 150 members, provides for no groups , nor any help center support.
2. Ning Plus - $19.95 a month or $199.95 a year. Unlimited membership, standard features and support.
3. Ning Pro - $49.95 a month or $499.95 a year with premium features and support.
4. Move to another provider of a Social Community Web site.
The first choice does not allow us to have any groups and that is a large part of our page. It would also freeze our growth at 150 members which is not acceptable.
The second choice would require us to raise $200. A year, each year from here on. The Historical Society is not financially able to provide this money as they have enough difficulties to survive each year. I gave it a lot of consideration but in the end I was not prepared to spend time raising the money each year. The time I spend as administrator and manager is as much as I am prepared to contribute. Each year as the membership grows is takes more time to manage.
Therefore I/we are left with option number four. I have been gathering information on Ning.com and at least another dozen web pages and learned the following. Ning claims over two million web sites and 25% of them are free. That means 500,000 free site administrators and members are very unhappy to have the rug pulled out from under them.
Other providers of free Social Web sites are rushing into the vacuum and doing everything they can to attract Ning’s free floaters that are scrambling to save their sites.
I have spent considerable time checking a dozen sites out and I picked Spruz.com as the most appealing.
I could write pages about the good and bad things found in my search but we have to act fast before our present pages on Ning.com are deleted.
Ning.com is preparing software in order to allow us to migrate our sites to other providers. That will not be ready until July 2010. Our site will be condensed into a special import file and when ready Spruz will be able to migrate our site and everything in it. Sorry, but I expect many trials and tribulations before this is all done.
Small uncomplicated Ning.com sites simply deleted their files and started all over on a new site. They then had to contact all their old members and sign them all up again. We cannot do that because we have too many groups and photos that would be lost, not to mention the data.
I have opened the new site that can be located at kittsonhistorian.spruz.com I have started a Blog that you can read but you cannot add any comments or suggestions unless you are a member. There is nothing else on the page and there will be little but the blog until at least July. I suggest you hold off joining and contact me at my email address firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any comments or suggestions. I will also post information on my blog on the old ning page. If you would like to open a topic of discussion under the forums please do so.
In the 13 and a half months since our web page was created I have contributed a great deal of time and effort and to lose it is irritating. If you are unhappy with recent developments I fully sympathize. I will keep you informed of developments as they arise.