I'm pretty sure everyone here wants feedback, as much of it as possible. Nobody wants to spend time writing things that nobody else is going to read or comment on, or talking into an empty catbox. We are in the midst of a vicious cycle where, as more people drift away from E2, there are fewer people on E2 to provide the interaction and feedback that people crave, so more people leave and the cycle gets even worse.
But let's not beat around the bush - the real problem that E2 has is that the look and feel of the site itself has not kept up with the times. I freely admit that any changes we make to the XP/Level system at this point are not so different from rearranging chairs on the Titanic, and I am under no illusions that any of this is going to magically resurrect E2 to its former glory days.
But what really gives me hope is the fact that for the first time in years, there is actually a real plan to make this place better, not just in terms of our internal rules and requirements, but in terms of the actual look and feel and backend and frontend functionality of the site. As I'm sure most of you have noticed, jay has been working like a dog to get this place modernized, and the fact that it so far still looks exactly the same as it did 10 years ago is actually a tribute to his genius, because he's already changed a ton of things behind the scenes.
I believe in jay, and I really do believe and expect that some huge changes for the better are around the corner. That's what gives me hope and is the reason I'm even bothering to tinker with XP/Levels to try to make them better at all.
Look, I don't think E2 can ever get 10,000 new writeups in a month the way we had it back in 2001. But the internet was a completely different place back then. Blogs didn't even exist, let alone Wikipedia, Facebook, or Twitter, and outside of E2, you basically had to know HTML to even write a sentence online, so E2 was kind of the only option to write stuff. And frankly, 10,000 new writeups a month was insane and completely unmanageable; I was there back then, so I remember how most of those writeups fell off the front page in mere minutes and never got read by anyone, and also how most of them were complete crap and the editors had to delete things like crazy just to keep their heads above water.
Getting this site modernized is the first step and is going to allow us to do all sorts of things. Like actually pay some of our writers, if people want to do that. And write all kinds of new content that makes use of images and video and better layouts. The old E2 will live on, and all past work will be preserved, but there will be new layers on top of that that are promoted toward the general public. I've been around quite a while (although not as long as some), and I've seen a lot of visions of "The New E2" peddled over the years. But the vision that jay has is definitely the best and most viable one yet, and at this point, let's be honest - almost any change would be a good change.
So I urge you all to stick around and see what happens. These changes are going to be big (behind the scenes, they are already big), so at the very least, you won't be bored.