Top 10 Reasons Why the Episode Forums Shut Down is a Bad Idea

At the end of August 2024, the Episode Forums are scheduled to shut down and be 'replaced' with a Discord server. These forums have served as a platform for members of the Episode community to connect with one another for ten years.

The Episode community includes artists, writers, coders, and readers who are united by their shared love for the visual storytelling and story writing platform known as Episode. This platform has not only allowed community writers to create but has also enabled some people to earn money from their artwork.

Shutting it down would deal a devastating blow to the creatives in this community. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Please boost this list with your comments, and check out the petition below to help save this beloved online community of creators. Even if you are unfamiliar with the Episode forums, you should be able to sympathize with the experience of having something valuable taken away from you.

https://www.change.org/save_the_forums
The Top Ten
1 It will delete 10 years' worth of valuable content

Ten years. Episode has been around for ten years. If the forums shut down, all ten of those years of hard work will be erased for good. It's like the internet version of book burning.

2 It will cut off a source of money for creators

The forums are a place where artists, coders, editors, beta readers, and writers can set up "shops" and offer their services in exchange for money through PayPal or Venmo. The Discord server does not allow "promotion" or "external links," so this would be a devastating blow to the wallets of many creatives.

3 The Episode community will no longer be able to Google their questions and guarantee a result

If you want to make money, you want people to know about you. If people are Googling you, they want to know about you. If people want to know about you, then they are more likely to give you their time and money. The less Episode is able to be found by a Google search, the less they will be talked about, and thus, the less money they will make.

Oh, and a ton of creatives will lose a vital resource to help them get more than a chapter of their story written! Fewer resources available to Google means less motivated writers, which means fewer people promoting their app for free.

4 The 'replacement' is a Discord server that does not allow people to share grievances

It has been said that 'freedom of speech is the freedom for the thought one does not like.' Discord's terms of service prohibit all "anti-Discord" speech. This has caused users to be given warnings for simply sharing the petition to save the forums or expressing grievances about the new change.

Meanwhile, the forums give users the freedom to express whatever problems they have with the company, the app, and the forums themselves.

5 Keeping it open to be viewed would cost them nothing

Apparently, the reason that the forums are shutting down is due to "lack of engagement" and "cutting costs." (Although neither of these has been officially confirmed by the company, only estimated by the community.)

How much money do you think it would cost them to lock all of the posts on the site? Compare that to the amount of money/time it must currently be taking them to fix all of the problems with the Discord server, upload the guides to the server, and more.

6 The forums are still being used daily

"LaCk Of EnGaGeMeNt", they say, even though there are posts on the forums constantly being made. If they are going to tell us lies, they are going to have to try better than that.

7 Many members of the forums have said that they would quit the app altogether if the forums close

Because making people quit using your app is a great way to make money off of it, right?

8 The petition telling them not to do so is still growing

Over 550 people have signed the petition, and that petition is still steadily growing. That's over 550 customers who have found the petition and taken the time to sign it. How many more will there be by the end of July? Or by the end of August? And how many of those people are customers that they just lost by shutting down a vital place for the Episode community?

Wow. Cutting off customers. What a great way to make more money!

9 The format of the forums is much easier to read through than the Discord format

Say what you will about the Episode company or app, but the Episode forums are very organized. Every post has a category and is labeled based upon its content. Discord? Not so much.

10 The company has yet to provide a concrete reason as to why this is happening

That's right. They made this announcement and didn't even say WHY they were doing it. If you want to convince someone that something is a good idea, then you need to provide evidence. If you cannot back up your decision with evidence, then chances are it is a poor decision.

While one of the moderators on the forums/Discord has said that it is due to 'lack of activity,' there has been no word from the company itself and no official statement behind this decision.

No data illustrates 'lack of engagement.' No data shows how much money it costs to run the forums. No concrete evidence that the forums need to die.

If that doesn't scream "These people are lying/hiding something," then I don't know what does.

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