This will probably come across as snooty and conceited, but I do have some suggestions and I think they'd really help the site. As many here know, I worked my butt off to acquire my Internship and later lost it due to inactivity--which still sucks for me to this day. I worked hard to get it because Digital Dreams is the only Digimon site that I like RPing on. Trust me, I've tried others and the temptation to try a new one is recurring once more. But let's face it: I can't RP on another one. Lol. The point is.. -Clears throat to redirect thoughts.- That I love Digital Dreams as a "Home Base" if you will of Digimon RP and therefore I don't want to see it die.
I have been board hopping for the past few days and I have noticed that nearly every forum nowadays is somehow connected to one another. It's like some wide-circled cult or social group. Forums are also hosting what is called an "Advertisement Contest" in which members who advertise on the most sites get IC rewards. In this case, it could be something like a Free Pass to the Training Fields, some DEP, and/or some Booster Packs and/or a Promo card. Or a Bundle Pack!
I understand that Digital Dreams is not "other sites" and that we don't want to make a clone of other sites, but we also need to consider our (for lack of a better term) competition and try to come up with ways to motivate people to join and stay active. I have several suggestions from taking a look at other sites and I'd like to represent them here:
Monthly Spotlight (similar to our Quarterly Contests). - Character, Member, and Staff of the Month. Some sites reward these Monthly Winners with money or EXP.
Advertising!! - I cannot possibly stress this enough. We all need to pitch in and get out there to advertise on as many forums and RP directories as we can. To encourage members to do this, hosting an Advertisement Contest might be a good idea. The site gives a Deadline to the members to see who can advertise the most. There are small to medium rewards for the top winners.
Plotting Board - A board for creating threads to keep track of character plots. Other members can post in any member's thread to discuss past/present/future relationships between characters. This is similar to a Social Network post in our own profiles, but where everyone can discuss it.
Plot Events - I understand the situation with plot events now that the story has basically been reset. I'm sure that you guys had this in mind to begin with (as most of the past Plot Events have done so), but incorporating members is a fantastic way to get people involved with the story. You can even have members sign up their characters for a specific plot event before it happens just to ensure that there's no confusion. That, of course, is optional.
Updating the Site - As the Staff well know because they're doing a fantastic job, updates are important! Plot events, contests, Spotlights, community-wide discussions, activity checks (which is done regularly! Great job, guys!) and especially regular updates on the information of Digital Dreams. I know the staff doesn't have a lot of time, but there is a lot of confusion over who holds what Crest and Digimental since a lot of previous Crest holders go inactive. Updating the Wiki with information that only Staff knows fits in to this section also.
Archives - You don't necessarily have to delete all of the inactive and/or dead threads, but sweeping them into an Archive board can make the site neater.
Contests - We have holidays and tournaments, but what about something like Design a Card contest? Or in celebration of certain holidays, have a contest then instead of just "Post what you did today here"? Easter, for example, you guys could have an Easter Egg hunt! The Staff can either (A) Mention/post IC Easter Eggs in threads or (B) have a sort of IC scavenger hunt. Winners get DEP, a card, and a little DEP. Okay, that's a poor representation of an idea, but you get the gist.
Challenges and Prompts - Basically, give the members the option of choosing a theme or prompt for one or several of their threads. OR you can present a challenge (not necessarily a Contest) to members for something like RPing with a Member you've never RPed with before. Since our member base is limited at the moment, RPing with certain Digimon, NPCs, and other characters would be more likely.
I don't mean to seem like a prune, I really don't with all of these suggestions. It's just that I feel like Digital Dreams is going through another rough patch because our member base is once again falling below the lines. DigiD has been around for 5 years now and I damn sure know it has nothing to do with members or staff being rude! We have some of the nicest and most helpful staff that I've ever seen and no one here ignores RP with new members, either. I know saying "We" seems a bit far-fetched in my case since I'm not Staff, but this is just as much my home as it is anyone else's and WE, as a community, need to stand together and try to build our member base back up! Not only do we need to rebuild it, but we need to keep it! Digital Dreams hasn't died yet and we just need to get out there and show the world that we're just as active as all of these other Digimon Forums!
Staff can take or leave the suggestions and new ideas are always wonderful, too! We have such a creative staff and you guys have worked your butts off to make DigiD a great place! Sounds like I'm sucking up now, doesn't it? XD But seriously, you guys are awesome! We just need to try and up the ante a little bit so that we can bring in more members. More members always means that a site is growing and it also means that one day, y'all can have a variety of new creative staffers to hire into Internship. Teach 'em the ropes and then let them fly free! Who knows? Maybe one of those new members-turned-intern will have a fresh idea that will revolutionize Digimon RP! Unlikely, but one can always dream. Haha.
But it's time that you guys got paid back for all your hard work and in my opinion, that's what having more members means: less stress on your part of keeping the site alive. Like I said, I'm sorry if I come across as pushy or snooty or ungrateful towards the staff. That's not what I'm trying to do: I'm just trying to help the site. -Bows, bows!- Sorry, but I just decided that the Q & A and Feedback forum needed some actual suggestions for DigiD! LOVE YOU GUYS!!
We did an advertising contest last summer. Could always do another one this year. :^,^: I do like the idea of a Training Fields pass, wherever it may come from.
The next plot event is going to call for at least a couple of volunteers. Official call for that will go out some time this month. Rest assured, no one's going to get stuffed in a box and sawed in half.
I don't think we've had too many people go as far as getting a crest and then going inactive. If someone isn't in it for the long haul, it's hard to get that far in the first place, though it can still happen. That said, we could do with a little tidying up and officiating of the list as to who has what, as well as some guidelines for how to handle any inactivities.