U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > Administration Zone > About the Forum
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-26-2012, 04:51 PM
 
Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA
7,652 posts, read 16,705,331 times
Reputation: 6829

Advertisements

I am very interested in all kinds of histories, from the very long-range (the origins of the Indo-Europeans) to the very short-range (the histories of forum-sites). I have tasked myself with an occupation of the utmost importance: to write a history of City-Data Forums.

Okay, enough with the corniness. Anyway, I have been here since September 2006, but had browsed the forums almost since their inception. "Back then", the appearance was slightly different, and all there were were forums for states, a General U.S. forum, and perhaps a few general forums. It was mostly oriented towards people who were relocating.

City-Data itself, a website that aggregates statistical data from the Census and other sources, existed since at least 2003. The first time Internet Archive crawled the page was September 23, 2003. See http://web.archive.org/web/200309231...city-data.com/ for an early grab of the site. As you can see, it does not look much different from the current City-Data.com . Not many sites can say they haven't changed much over 8-9 years!

City-Data Forums first appears in Internet Archives on December 30, 2005. The link is here: http://web.archive.org/web/200512300...data.com/forum . It is evident that it was just starting out. The site had a slightly different appearance, which didn't stay for long. The original forums consisted of all of the state forums, General U.S., and "Other Topics". To say it a different way, THIS is one of the original forums!

Less than a month later, the site boasted of 258 threads, 510 posts, and 471 members. The most popular forums were Tennessee (23 threads) and North Carolina (17 threads). The forum count (from the front page) remained the same. ( http://web.archive.org/web/200601262...ata.com/forum/ )

Fast-forward to late April 2006, and the site certainly was growing. In just three months, the membership total escalated from 471 to 4,096, and the thread count from 258 to 2,118. A "People Search" forum was added. (http://web.archive.org/web/200604271...ata.com/forum/ ) .

By Christmas Eve of 2006, the site had not expanded much, but since late April 2006, its membership had grown by nearly 800% to over 37,000 members and its post count by more than 900% to more than 215,000 posts. Other than possibly adding regional sub-forums, the only forum that was added was "Classified Ads".

The early forums appeared to mainly cater to those seeking information about relocating, as is apparent from the thread titles. I reckon that there were few people who actually stayed on the forum. Those relocating are still very much served by the forum, but it appears that it is much more of an area-specific "chat" forum today, with members sticking around for several years and discussing topics of local as well as general interest (more on that later).

It was in February 2007 when the first round of new forums were added. These were "Canada", "Mexico", "World", "Books, Movies, Music, TV" (one forum), "House", "Garden", "Real Estate Brokers", and "Health and Wellness". The closest crawl of the site to the addition of these new forums was on March 14th, 2007. It is evident that City-Data was growing very rapidly then. The number of members had nearly doubled in only 2.5 months from about 37,000 to more than 64,000.

By the end of 2007, City-Data Forums began to take on its present form. Numerous new general forums (too many to mention here; check http://web.archive.org/web/200712141...ata.com/forum/ ) had been created by the end of the year. The growth remained rapid; in nine months, the membership had more than tripled to 216,000.

It was through the addition of the "general" forums that City-Data gained a staying power with members. The character of the forums changed from a people-finding and relocation tips service to more of a general chat forum, and not only in the "general" forums. The state and city forums began to transform into the role that USENET newsgroups like "mn.general" or "alabama.birmingham" or "soc.culture.alaska" once played: a general chat forum for local topics.

In 2008, City-Data added blogs and "social groups", which members could join, as well as advanced user profile features such as "visitor messages" and pictures.

By the end of that year, City-Data had 472,254 members, 440,340 threads, and 6,356,413 posts; by December 2009, it had 765,256 members, and 737,575 threads containing 11,787,299 posts. The North Carolina forum was still the most active forum (as it had been since at least April 2006), with 54,711 threads.

Currently, as of February 26, 2012, the site boasts of 1,311,939 threads containing 22,231,856 posts and 1,335,614 members. The 1,335,614 members probably makes it one of the web's largest forums sites. By comparison, some very large forums sites that I visit have 587,406 members, 52,079 members (3,413 of them active), 495,388 members (75,989 of them active), and 304,437 members (7,842 of them active).

One thing that is also readily apparent as the site's statistics are examined is an increase in the post:thread ratio. From approximately 2 in April 2006, it jumped to 8 at the end of 2006, 12 at the end of 2007, 16 at the end of 2009, and about 17 as of present. This is probably due to the presence of "mega-threads" in the general forums, which usually don't require much out of the poster. Such threads include the following:

What Song Are You Listening To RIGHT NOW? (Part 5) (2,047 posts)

What are you drinking right now? Part 6 (9,046 posts)

What is the Temperature in your city? (Part 2) (16,947 posts)

So, that's my story of City-Data.com; from humble beginnings as a site primarily used by those relocating, it exploded into what is certainly one of the internet's large forum sites, serving every purpose for everybody.

(This took over two hours to write!)
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-26-2012, 08:38 PM
 
Location: Looking over your shoulder
31,304 posts, read 30,360,626 times
Reputation: 84399
Very interesting report of C-D history. Well done.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-26-2012, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Tricity
47,652 posts, read 68,433,563 times
Reputation: 109244
Wow!! Interesting. some stuff I really wanted to know!
Thank you tvdxer!!
__________________
.
"No Copyrighted Material"
Moderated forums:
World, Europe, Texas, Corpus Christi, El Paso, Lubbock, Tyler, Houston, San Antonio, Tallahassee, Minnesota,
Economics, Investing, Personal Finance, Fish, Home Interior Design and Decorating, Science and Technology Forums
.

Need help? Click on this: >>> ToS, Mod List, Rules & FAQ's, Guide, CD Home page, How to Search
Realtors are welcome here but do see our Realtor Advice to avoid infractions.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-26-2012, 09:12 PM
 
Location: Arizona, The American Southwest
53,218 posts, read 31,716,342 times
Reputation: 91487
Quote:
Originally Posted by tvdxer View Post
.......<Snipped>
So, that's my story of City-Data.com; from humble beginnings as a site primarily used by those relocating, it exploded into what is certainly one of the internet's large forum sites, serving every purpose for everybody.

(This took over two hours to write!)
My history with City Data? I joined in late May of 2007 by invitation...

I think it's a great mutli-purpose forums site.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-27-2012, 05:00 AM
 
13,768 posts, read 35,980,084 times
Reputation: 10654
Good job!!! I joined in 07 and have seen the forum grow with more and more subforums. I have moderated many city/state forums in the last 5 years and a few general forums. I have asked for help and have been given such great advice.

We are lucky to have so many wonderful members
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-27-2012, 06:15 AM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
26,534 posts, read 46,643,792 times
Reputation: 31089
Interesting read, and a good job! Thank you!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-27-2012, 11:02 AM
 
Location: somewhere between Lk. Michigan & Lk. Huron
5,585 posts, read 893,716 times
Reputation: 1391
Good job tvdxer; thanks for the History report on City Data. is interesting to know. I know one thing I've been curious about is, of the over 1 M members how many are actually active on C D. I am a member to other forums, but City Data forum is #1 with me. Like another poster mentioned City Data is a great multi-purpose forum site.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-27-2012, 11:45 AM
 
8,955 posts, read 3,901,697 times
It was a great idea, thank you! It's always nice to remember the "good old times."

As to how many members are active, I'm afraid it changes daily. We don't have such statistics but some people only posted a few times couple of year ago and never returned, others came back to post again after a few years, sometimes even under a new name, leaving the old account forgotten...

We'd have to define what "active" means, too, since there are people who post once every month or so, or just come to read, etc. I know what you mean but for the software to calculate such data, these parameters would have to be very carefully designed.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-27-2012, 12:26 PM
 
Location: The Circle City. Sometimes NE of Bagdad.
21,223 posts, read 22,274,704 times
Reputation: 53256
When I first saw this yesterday in OT, i thought that it would be fitting to have this thread here. I guess a mod thought so too.

Great job and this will answer questions that pop up from time to time.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-27-2012, 02:10 PM
 
Location: On the plateau, TN
15,204 posts, read 11,294,962 times
Reputation: 9998
Tvdxer...You sure did stir up some memories from 6 years ago as Marka has stated....

Fun to read some of the "old" posts ....
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > Administration Zone > About the Forum
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2021, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top