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Just_Curious's avatar

When did Fluther get started? Any major milestones and game changers since the beginning?

Asked by Just_Curious (16points) 3 weeks ago

I just came across Fluther for the first time and wondered if it’s been out there all along.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

13 Answers

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

Welcome to Fluther.

I believe it started in 2007. I’ve been here since the end of 2009.

It was a large-ish site. What set it apart was the rule requiring high writing standards. Also, we have live moderation by volunteers.

The site shrank when Google stopped listing us in their searches. Someone who knows more about that will have to comment.

Nowadays, the site is very small. We have a tiny cadre of regular users, and we are more like a community now. Still, people bring us their questions, and the community will do its best to try to get accurate information.

Enjoy yourself.

chyna's avatar

In the beginning God created Ben and Andrew. They, in turn created Fluther in 2007.
The creators aren’t around much and don’t update the site, but those of us still around like it just the way it is. More or less.
Welcome to Fluther!

JLoon's avatar

@chyna – Yep. That sounds like gods work.

Jeruba's avatar

Hi, @Just_Curious, and welcome.

There have been some changes, all right, even though the GUI appearance has stayed pretty much the same. I joined in November of 2008, at a time when the site was busy and lively. I loved the fact that it was well moderated and that posts were held to a high standard. We had a few cranks and trolls, always have had, but the tone was upbeat and friendly, and we had some very steadying presences among us.

Here are a few samples. This one is the revered First Question posted on Fluther, by one of the co-founders, and it looks so choppy because he was testing things:

https://www.fluther.com/1/whats-so-special-about-salt-and-pepper/

That was October 16, 2006. The last post on that thread was a year later. For some of us, the page is almost a who’s who of the old-timers, most of whom are long gone, many still missed.

This post points back to that. Note @jca’s comment:

https://www.fluther.com/199034/what-was-the-first-question-ever-asked-on-fluther/

Here is one of several posts over time, listing Fluther memes. A few of these are still remembered, the frizzer in particular:

https://www.fluther.com/36605/does-everyone-know-about-fluther-isms/

@augustlan, the OP on that thread, was the much-beloved community manager at the time. Here she is at her 40k celebration:

https://www.fluther.com/140679/amazing-that-our-fearless-leadermomboss-ladywhip-wielding-dominatrix-augustlan-has-the-time/

Parties for milestones at 10k increments are an old Fluther tradition.

Auggie died on January 8th, 2019, leaving Fluther diminished and jellies grieving. Many of us still miss her keenly. Her three young daughters used to come around too.

https://www.fluther.com/212020/guys-i-have-some-sad-news-to-share/

Two other threads about Fluther memes, one from 2009:

https://www.fluther.com/31729/what-are-fluthers-memes/

and one from ten years later—rather a stark contrast:

https://www.fluther.com/214228/what-are-fluthers-current-memes/
 
 
You asked for milestones—interesting question!—and these are the ones I would list. Others may have more to add. Please note, I don’t know the right chronological order for these:

•  appointment of Auggie as community manager
•  addition of “awards” for lurve points
•  separation of Qs, originally all in one basket, into General, Social, and Meta
•  ability to view enlarged avatars on the profile pages, rather than the tiny thumbnails in threads
•  death of Gail Calder (@gailcalled), 10/24/2015, aunt of co-founder Ben Finkel and one of the original jellies
•  death of Auggie (@augustlan), 1/8/2019
•  departure of Fluthergods Ben and Andrew (aka “Bendrew”) to work for Twitter; end of site development, now maintained through the kindness of Ben. This thread alludes to it; I couldn’t find the original announcement, which was several years earlier:

https://www.fluther.com/178108/what-was-fluther-sold-for-to-twitter/

There. I’m out of breath now. I hope someone else will add the marriage proposal thread (Gary @whatthefluther), which I think had the all-time highest number of posts. A happy memory.

kneesox's avatar

Interesting. Looks like that first question stayed open for three years, not one.

Brian1946's avatar

@Jeruba

Thanks for such a comprehensive answer.

I’ll always miss the mysterious MisterStinky!

Jeruba's avatar

@Brian1946, I wondered if that might have been Andrew pitching in with a pseudopseudonym, just for test purposes. I noticed that he never had a last visit

Brian1946's avatar

The absence of any last visit date in his profile is what I found to be mysterious.

Now that you’ve mentioned it, it does seem like the result of administrative malarkey.

Mimishu1995's avatar

What I haven’t seen anyone mentioning yet is that a lot of us are refugees from other sites, the most being Answerbag. That is because Answerbag closed down sometime in 2009 and people were looking for an alternative. I think currently we are experiencing refugees from Y!A because the site just closed down this year. I myself is a Y!A refugee, and I left because Y!A was a horrible website.

@Brian1946 are you a refugee?

Brian1946's avatar

@Mimishu1995

Yes, I am. I emigrated from Canswerbag.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Welcome!

There is now a Tide Pool on Facebook.

When I joined it was very fun, with more varied users.

Politics and religion were always interesting discussions but over time it has leaned hard Left causing many to leave. A drastic and unwelcome milestone for me, as I’ve lost a lot of friends to intolerance.

When one of us has a major problem or trauma, the support and love really add value to the site. Petty squabbles seem to fade as we rally to support eachother.

I hope you find intellectual and/or emotional value here, as well. :)

Just_Curious's avatar

Thanks, everyone, for your thoughtful and comprehensive answers! I didn’t know there were so many other sites like this one, either.

Jeruba's avatar

@Brian1946, no end date: undead, then. A zombie jelly.

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