Should I give readers a heads-up that I'm killing one of my websites?
September 16, 2013 4:28 PM Subscribe
I am a professional publisher who produces four lifestyle websites loved by lots of people. After four years of non-profitability, I've decided to kill one of the websites at the end of the year. Should I give the site's 175,000 monthly readers a heads-up that the site is dying?
posted by anonymous to computers & internet (29 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I can see arguments for both ways:
If I give readers a heads-up that the end is near, does that allow them to enjoy the last few months?
If I DON'T give readers a heads-up, do I save myself the trouble of months of freaking out and complaining over a business decision that's already been made? What's really to be gained by telling people in advance?
Relevant bits of information:
* The editor who produces the site will be kept on staff, working on other sites.
* The site itself will stay online in archive form, but no new content will be produced.
* The site's community can be prone to drama & histrionics (wait... doesn't that describe all online communities? Maybe irrelevant)
* Most similar situation: maybe when Valleywag was killed?
I'd also just love to hear stories of from other content folks who've "put down" online publications that weren't profitable. Did you switch Wordpress to static pages? Did you plaster ads all over your archives? How did you make the announcement?