Thanks for all of your opinions. I'm glad so many of you have taken the time to let us know what you think about the changes. We anticipated that some people would not be happy and that some would. Following will be my last comments about why we changed.
All sites that are not responsive - display and work easily from a phone, to a tablet to your PC are dying quickly. Our mobile traffic grows by leaps and bounds every year and now represents the majority of our traffic. This new reports and classifieds format works flawlessly on any device now. Posting a report with or without a picture, making a comment, or placing a classified ad all works flawlessly from any device you want to access the internet from. Since we have made the changes, our traffic has grown significantly!
The reports/forum section of this site has declined every year for the last three years. All of the other parts of the site have grown significantly. On most forums the same thing is true. Facebook, basically a glorified forum or message board, has a lot to do with that.
There are exceptions to the rule of decline for forums and message boards. One you have to be mobile friendly and two you have to divide the various interests - mixing deer hunters with duck hunters with bass fisherman with kayakers with hog hunters does not work in the long run. In the old format, every time someone posted anything about something there it was at the top of the page for anyone to post a comment about. Sometimes the comment was helpful, most of the time it was not and sometimes it was just downright mean or stupid. In addition, the majority of you did not go past the front page. if you only liked to hog hunt there might have been a great post on hog hunting, but it was now on page three within a day or two. Kinda tough to form a community when you didn't even know it was there.
This forum looks different now, acts different now and hopefully will continue to grow like it has since we made the changes. We pray that by separating the folks that like to duck hunt from the speck fisherman from the hog hunter from the person that just wants to post a cool picture from the person needing advice on a scope, etc YOU CAN begin to form communities of fisherman and hunters that can come here and enjoy themselves, learn something and share something.
This thread will be locked now and all other threads on this subject will be deleted. If you have a question about how to use a feature on the site, obviously we look forward to helping you out. If you have further comments, email me directly by clicking the little button that says contact user right under the picture of me and my lovely daughter.