Hubbers, feel free to jump over to the blog to learn a bit about our future. This is an opportunity for us to offer better technology, more earnings, and expand on what we do best together.
https://blog.hubpages.com/2018/01/05/hu … aut-maven/
Sounds exciting and interesting but wonder if only for select Hubbers will be allowed to migrate to the Maven’s user experience? I hope not after having invested five years here only to have it all come to naught!
That does sound scary and I definitely need to know more.
Great set of questions from EricDockett, I would love to know the answers to all of them.
I really hope they don't narrow the content creator field on Hubpages, that's always been the best part about this network.
We will be maintaining the HubPages Network, and additionally, some HubPages authors may be invited to become Maven partners as well, so this represents additional opportunities for authors, not the loss of existing ones.
Can you give us a link to Maven's website, so we can see what they are about?
Thank you, that sounds reassuring. I would hate not to reach my first 100 hubs:) I wish the team and their new partners all the success they deserve.
Okaaayy . . . .so, once again, can you please be more clear.
When I look at the Maven site I see a bunch of subfolders they are calling "channels".
As in: themaven. net/site
Are the HubPages network sites becoming subfolders of the Maven site?
As in themaven. net/pethelpful
Or will the niche sites remain on their own domains?
Also I had a bunch of other questions in my previous post if anyone has a minute to field them.
I would assume that the niche sites will remain on their own domains, because that was one of the main reasons for creating the niche sites, so that Google would see them as having consistent content under one site, rather than just a varied content farm like HubPages main is.
You may assume anything you like. I would like to hear it from staff.
To me, the smart thing to do would be to leave them on their own domains instead of migrating them to themaven. net
@Christy this being my Third Attempt, so I WILL be included to continue my hubbing with HP?
Would "becoming partners with Maven" mean leaving the HP team?
Wow! Big news! Congrats on having the most successful 4th quarter in our history. I certainly have seen a nice uptick in CPMs, and am very happy (been publishing more on HP lately). Looking forward to seeing the improvements Maven will bring.
I suggest you send your blog entry out as an email to all Hubbers, as this is a major development that all should be made aware of.
I have a few questions:
Unless I read something incorrectly, it appears that Maven has only been in business for 6 months. How can you know so soon that it has proven itself?
Also, it appears they are buying HP, not that you are just "joining" them. If this is so, who will be in charge and will we still have access to the HP team as before.
Finally, there is a statement about choosing "select authors" to move into the Maven realm. What exactly does that mean?
I'd really like to know the answers to these questions because this is a big move and I feel some discomfort about it.
I found this fascinating https://www.themaven.net/the-maven/pres … 6E0c6WYDMQ
I hope they fix their software. Maybe it works just for mobile. I find it very frustrating. Can't even get back to the home/ start page from reading anywhere else on the site. I could not find any social media accounts for them, on their own site. Overall, it seemed very clunky and confusing. But, no wonder they want HubPages. There are almost no posts on their site! At least not the places I looked.
I just went through it all over and hope everything will be fine. Maven asserted that HubPages will remain completely independent in their acquisition statement. They are taking over the 27 niche sites and whoever may opt to shift.
So, I hope we retain our freedom to choose and shift according to our own willingness and our stamina.
I would like to know if we will keep the same payment structure we now have once Maven takes over. If not, what will the structure be.
I think that's been answered - look in the yellow boxes
HOWEVER you just need to bear in mind that whatever is said by somebody here right here and now will not necessarily apply once contracts have been signed - unless the guarantee is built into the contract - and even then "force majeure" can still apply.
When somebody else controls the show then what happens is what they say happens.
At the end of the day when a takeover happens it's essentially about business not loyalty. It's naive to think otherwise.
I agree. We can ask for assurances from Paul, but ultimately he will not be the boss any more, he will be the manager of a subsidiary, and he will have to do what the boss of Maven tells him.
All Paul and the team can tell us right now is that Maven has bought the HubPages network as a going concern and they're going to keep it running "as is" FOR NOW. It's not his call to say how things will change in the future.
The other obvious point to make is people very rarely buy a "property/company" to keep "as is".
They normally want to improve it - to what they think works better.
However whether or not they actually add value - or do something else - is something you only find out down the road.
However if you start looking into the background of the person doing the takeover you can usually find some pretty clear indications of the way things will work out. People have a tendency to repeat themselves.
I hope change would be positive and the best. However, this new is scary
While this sounds promising, I can't help but remember what happened to XO Jane when the site was sold to Time Warner. Within one year, XO Jane shut down.
Because the organizational culture changed. Editorial content was controlled by the new company. Writers were pressed to produce high traffic posts.
The site died.
Not trying to be negative but I've been through plenty of m/a activity. Things rarely happen as they are initially planned.
But in the final analysis, what's done is done. We must accept and adapt.
The HP Team has been very busy with the new editors and the upcoming mergers, but we are reading your thoughts and would like to clarify a few points:
-HubPages Network Sites will be treated like Maven channels for the purpose of marketing, PR, and ad sales. But they will be keeping their URLs and otherwise operating much the same as they do now, except, hopefully with increased ad yields.
-Authors will continue to own their content on HubPages and Network Sites and may remove it at will.
-Some HubPages authors may additionally be invited to become Maven contributors (and may accept or decline the invitation), but would still own their HubPages content, which would remain separate from any future relationship with Maven (accepting would not mean Maven would gain ownership of your HubPages articles).
Of course, nothing in the online publishing world is set in stone, but if anything major were to change regarding the functioning of HubPages and Network Sites, we will give plenty of advance notice.
Thanks Christy for that reassurance. It does eliminate some of the stress. However, will the Hubpage team talk to Maven about changing the wording in the TOS to better look out for the authors?
That sounds a lot more reassuring, thank you Christy. Lets hope we can pull together and make this a success.
THIS is what I've been waiting to hear. THANK YOU SO MUCH KRISTY!
The thought of losing all of my work, having to set up a website, lose all of the tech stuff you guys have created for us AND losing all of my relationships with other writers here was overwhelming me. I think many others feel the same.
So, if I understand you correctly, HP will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Maven but will not function like maven or force writers to follow Maven's TOS? The only writers who accept invitations to write on Maven will be those who accept and even they will not be turning over the rights to their articles?
If I am reading this correctly, then you have lifted a great burden from my shoulders.
Does this mean we are losing our Amazon ads? I read that Maven doesn't allow for those, is this true? Would that even apply to the Hubpages network sites?
We have no plans to discontinue the ability to earn from Amazon products at this time.
Christy, All your points are clear except the first. And I had posted inquiring about this confusion before.
You say that Network Sites will keep their URLs. But you also say that the Network Sites will be treated like Maven channels. So does that mean their URLs will be 301 redirected to a channel on themaven.net?
That has been the biggest concern we all have and it still had not been addressed!
If this is the way it's going to be, then we are going backwards–back to a content farm that Google does not like. There was a reason why the Network Sites were created as physically individual domains, and not hosed under a home domain like Maven is doing with channels.
So are we going back to a content farm? Inquiring minds want to know.
I was browsing Maven and of the 47 new channels they claim to be bringing in, there are about 9 missing and there is no mention of Hubpages coming soon. I'm hopeful this means we would indeed keep our own url's and not be 301 redirected, however a firm confirmation would be greatly appreciated.
Especially after I found some interesting information from Maven that sounds like they have no interest in veering away from their current content farm. I provided a few quotes and the link, so you can take a look for yourself if you'd like. I hope the link works. This is from Nov of 2017.
"The key differentiator for our business model is that the entire network is on a single business and technology infrastructure, which eliminates duplicative costs and simplifies the management of scale."
"Thank you James. Maven is the technology platform and the business operations that distribute and monetize the content generated by publishing channel partners. By deploying hundreds of channels on a single, world class, database we achieve technical economies of scale that any one publisher could not afford to duplicate."
https://www.themaven.net/the-maven/inve … SMCg2lrTww
Thanks for that link, Cholee.
The way CEO James Heckman explained it in the conference call is very disheartening. Now we know… All they care about is cutting costs by combining the entire network on a single infrastructure.
We already know that is doomed for failure. HubPages crawled out of the Panda fiasco by making individual vertical network sites that are truly separate from the home site. That is why we are making money again. I can't believe that Paul and the rest of the staff is willing to join up with Maven if this means we go back to a content farm structure. Very disheartening.
I want to see what staff says about this conference call. And not just meaningless words like "the URLs will remain." Hubbers are too smart to fall for that. We all know the difference between a REAL hosted site and a URL that uses a 301 redirect.
It is very simple to have multiple domains with a single infrastructure. Look at the niche sites for instance. Don't they all have the same design (most of it?) don't they all have the same ad network? Same infrastructure thereby cutting costs. But still different domains.
I'm not talking for Maven right now, but from the quotes SHESABUTTERFLY put up, this does not necessarily mean maven is going to stick to one domain. They can share infrastructure on multiple domains too,
Brandon, Somehow I'm not making myself clear to you. The virtual sites we have on HubPages are on the same infrastructure. Yes. I agree with that. But they are physically individual domains. The URLs of each niche site DO NOT 301 redirect back to HubPages.com !
Maven, on the other hand, also has individual URL's for their channels. BUT they redirect back to the home domain (themaven.net).
The latest new channel (just announced) is an example: TheAlphaDiscoverer.com - you'll notice that this URL 301 redirects to themaven.net.
I hope I made my self clear now. This is a big concern. It's clearly content farm, Brandon, if all the channel URLs are 301 redirected to the home domain.
I know exactly what you're fearing Glenn. When I'm not studying I'm working on SEO for clients since I'm 18 and could legally work. Yes, Maven is doing exactly what you are saying on the small websites they are acquiring. That's something unfortunate.
But, as Christy has stated a few times and also just confirmed on my post where I tried to clarify it to you, that is absolutely not the case with this acquisition/merger. There are going to be absolutely no new 301 redirects created from HP and the Niche sites that point to some new page or channel as they are well known on the maven domain.
Go to Adsense and see what Ad Channels are. I know I'm being mean right now, but I don't want your post to start the confusion again. Niche sites are being considered as channels on the Maven Backend for their ad network. But on the frontend they are going to be as they are.
To make it simple for everyone consider it like this:
Hubpages is not merging with maven instead they are just signing up a new ad partner with better tech. Everything is going to remain the same for us for now. The only change is that there may be higher ad yields
EDIT: I think this quote from Christy does clarify your point, doesn't it?
-HubPages Network Sites will be treated like Maven channels for the purpose of marketing, PR, and ad sales.
The post from Christy does not clarify it. See my reply to her. The Ad Channels have nothing to do with channels on Maven, which are subdirectories under the home domain.
I'm sad to say, but she cannot be any clearer than this. She has stated it very clearly. Let me try one more time:
What you say:
You say that Network Sites will keep their URLs. But you also say that the Network Sites will be treated like Maven channels. So does that mean their URLs will be 301 redirected to a channel on themaven.net?
What Christy just said:
-HubPages Network Sites will be treated like Maven channels for the purpose of marketing, PR, and ad sales. But they will be keeping their URLs and otherwise operating much the same as they do now, except, hopefully with increased ad yields.
If you look at the statement again you will notice you stop reading at "like Maven channels". Channels is something Maven coincidently calls its folders. But channels also means a database served by an ad network. In this case Hubpages is going to be the latter. Something you can see in Christys statement: for the purpose of marketing, PR and ad sales.
But, they (the niche sites and HP) will be operating much (other than the hopeful increased ad yields) the same way.
Hubpages articles (niche sites included) are not merging with Maven. There are going to be absolutely no 301 redirects . The merger is regarding the sharing of technology and their adpartners. Yes, Maven is going to make money from HP and the niche sites too, but by operating them as separate entities at least for the foreseeable future.
Thanks for the further clarification Christy.
Lobobrandon is indeed a keeper. Meanwhile, I do believe pretty much 99% have put their pitchforks back in the barn.
this is why I like you. You bring humour into serious situations. My offer to guide you (if you ever need it) still stands for this specific reason
Meanwhile, you and Marisa mentioned to not delete articles based solely on the zero traffic factor. Fortunately, I haven't. Anything I put a decent amount of work into remains. Deleting such masterpieces would offend my sensibilities. I'm only deleting the kind of zero traffic stuff that HP would shoot me for if I tried posting it as a hub.
Yes, HubPages would shoot you but that's because you're collateral damage. They're not really shooting at you.
This was explained years ago by Derek, one of my favourite moderators (who is no longer here). He explained that they introduced the "unfeaturing for traffic" process because it was the only reliable way to identify Hubs that Google hated, and hide them so they wouldn't upset Google any more.
However, he said there would be collateral damage, because low traffic doesn't necessarily mean Google hates a Hub. It just means no one happens to be searching for that particular topic. HubPages would have preferred not to penalise Hubs like that, but they didn't have the manpower to keep up with the job any other way, so they had to accept that some good Hubbers would suffer.
Will the money split remain the same and will our pages still have the same look? Will they still be called HubPages?
For now everything is going to be the same. Design changes were always happening, so it's very likely we could expect some more changes in the future. But I see HP is mostly working towards higher incomes this year. Yes the hubpages domain is still going to be home to where we work and it is going to be called hubpages (see pauls blog post which is linked in the original post of this forum thread). And the niche sites are going to be the same too. Pethelpful is going to remain pethelpful.
The money split will remain the same and the site will still be called HubPages (and the Network Sites will keep their respective names as well). However, it is likely that the design will change eventually, when we are further along in this process.
Okay, I think we might be getting somewhere. So you're saying that being "treated like Maven channels for the purpose of marketing, PR, and ad sales" does not in any way imply that our niche sites will be hosted on themaven.net home site? Ever?
Ever? Well that's a whole different story right.
Did you ever think that HP would switch to subdomains or niche sites? Let alone the merger with Maven. As it stands right now, there are no plans for any of the articles from here to be on the maven domain. But no one knows what the future holds.
Yes, I'm feeling a little better about it. And I thank you for getting involved in rebutting opposing views. That's what makes this great, and helps clear things up. As long as our hubs stay off the Mavens platform, we shouldn't see any problems.
Yes. As I just posted in a reply to Marisa, I too was not a 100% certain, it was just what I felt was most probable. I wanted to work on a new hub this weekend, instead, I decided to do some work on my website while we all waited for the confirmation from Christy.
If the hubs were being moved to the Maven domain I would definitely not write anything new here. Not under the current scenario at least.
Are you saying different domains can remain on one platform? Are platforms and domains the same thing? Or is a platform like infrastructure where you can have several separate domains on one platform? I don't speak technical language and have no idea what any of these terms mean and am having to learn on the fly. Needless to say, it makes it very hard for me to follow along.
First of all let's get one thing clear then, shall we. Nothing is going to change here as of now. We can all relax and get back to writing and working on our hubs
A platform is not the same as a domain. Think of the platform as a foundation and on this foundation you could build a shopping mall. Every store inside is independent, but they share the same staircase, elevators, escalators, etc. So in terms of internet stuff, they share the same technology since they are on the same platform, but they are all independent just like individual domains.
Of course, stores could have escalators just for themselves but their customers still use the common stairs, elevators, etc too. So having the same platform does not mean the technology has to be 100% the same. You have the choice to be as unique as you want to be.
Well, there are actually two answers I need to give you. A host computer can have thousands of domains. But that is simply a way of hosting and they are still individual sites as far as Google can tell. There's nothing wrong with that. Amazon Web Services (AWS) hosts thousands of sites one their infrastructure, for example.
The problem would be if individual domains are created as subdirectories under one common domain, as Maven is doing. In that case it does no good to have individual domain URLs pointing to the subdirectories. Google can clearly see that they are all under one roof, so to say.
EDIT: I see that Brandon just replied too, with a well-detailed explanation. I also want to add my sentiment that we can all get on with our work. It's clear now that the present plans do not involve moving our hubs to Mavens site.
Quote: The problem would be if individual domains are created as subdirectories under one common domain, as Maven is doing.
I would not call them individual domains. It's more like individual domains are acquired and maven creates a subfolder with their name on it. It's not an individual domain anymore. A 301 redirect renders the old page and in this case the domain obsolete. (this is just for SHESABUTTERFLY since she said she's learning on the go which I admire)
You're right! I called them individual domains because I was actually referring to the individual URLs that point to the subdirectories ( subfolder as you call it ). But thanks for clearing that up as I understand it can be confusing for one who doesn't know. And I give credit to Cholee (Shesabutterfly) too for asking intelligent questions. That's how people learn.
Yup, I always appreciate it when people are putting in an effort to learn new stuff.
Thanks Glenn and Brandon. I'm still somewhat confused by the wording, but I'm going to try and keep learning so I can be as confident that this is all going to work out as both of you. I think the fact that Maven and Hubpages are using some of the words differently, and my little knowledge of all things tech was making me all scatter brained while I tried to piece everything together.
Thanks again for taking the time to explain things!
I can't resist pitching in to see if I can add something to help clarify.
A domain is, basically, a website. So, HubPages.com is a domain. Pethelpful.com is a domain. TheMaven.net is a domain.
On a domain, you can have sub-domains or sub-folders, just like you can have folders in a filing cabinet, to keep everything in order. So once upon a time, when HubPages was one big website, each author had their own sub-domain.
Then, HubPages split up the site, so we lost our sub-domains. Instead, HubPages has created several new domains, each one specialising in one broad subject area. They are not sub-domains, they are domains, meaning each one is an independent website in its own right. HubPages.com is one website, Pethelpful.com is a separate website, Hobbylark.com is a separate website, and so on. As Glenn pointed out, they are still on the same infrastructure, and HubPages has created links between them, but they are all independent.
There's a good reason for that - Google has made it very clear they reward websites that specialise, and penalize sites that generalise. Having a generalist site and separating different subjects by putting them into sub-folders isn't enough to satisfy Google -, each website needs to be independent.
This is why we've been so upset at the prospect of moving the HubPages niche sites to Maven - because if you look at their website right now, it's just one domain, and each of its specialist sites is just a sub-folder.
So it's a great relief to hear that HubPages won't be moving over to Maven's sub-folder structure, but instead will keep all its independent niche sites.
Thanks for clarifing further! Maven is using the same terms for other people/networks/websites in regards to their acquiring them to Maven and they show up as subdomains/folders. I always thought network was the same as domain/website. I think that's where my confusion is coming in.
Maybe I've been spending way too much time on Maven...
I must say, I'm struggling to understand why Maven set it up the way it has.
Basically, what they've done is persuade organisations and individuals to move their existing website on to the Maven domain as a sub-folder. I'm astonished that any website owner would be willing to surrender their domain and transfer all their content into a subfolder of someone else's domain. As far as Google traffic is concerned, that's suicide.
I can only assume that some of these website weren't doing all that well in the first place, and Maven has convinced them that eventually, Maven will be so well-known, people will come straight to Maven instead of going through Google. I can't quite see how Maven can manage to build a brand when they can't clearly define what they do. Let's see, "Maven is the place to ....." what? read about chocolate? read about current affairs? The best they can say, eventually, is that they've got a lot of content about a lot of different stuff, so you can have fun browsing around and might find something you like.
Thank goodness HubPages has confirmed our niche sites won't become sub-folders, but will stay as separate domains.
I can't promise that it will never happen ever. But we have no plans to host or redirect our sites there at this time.
If that were ever to change, it would be because we believed it was the best option for the future health of the sites after careful testing, analyzing, speaking with our Google contacts, etc. Sometimes the gambles we make don't turn out, but we always make decisions with the continued success of the existing content in mind.
Thank you so much Christy. That is the honest answer I was looking for. Can't ask for anything else.
Christy - what would be very helpful right now - given the difficulties with terminology is a set of chart images showing
1) HubPages as it used to be prior to the new niche sites
2) HubPages and the new niche sites - as it is right now
3) HubPages and the new niche sites within the Maven "Group" / platform
That would more clearly articulate the differences - especially if examples of how domains and sub-domains were articulated at the same time.
Plus an explanation of what a "vertical" is in the Maven "group" would also be most helpful
Just out of interest, how many pages do you have on the niche sites, at the moment?
None - I've explained why in a previous post.
Will already knows that, as I'm sure he checked your profile.
I think his point is, since the merger doesn't affect you, why are you so worried about it?
I can see why you are asking for charts and stuff. I can tell you that the niches have been pretty successful for those involved in them. HP have come up with a winning formula and it is that formula that has attracted the extra funding that will flow from themaven deal.
Obviously, there are risks with new owners but the opportunities for a successful management team empowered with new money is something to give a cautious welcome to.
Marisa - I know he knows!
I'm not worried for myself. I am concerned for others - particularly in relation to some interpretation of what is being said which is erroneous. I wasn't aware that being altruistic was forbidden in these forums
Also HubPages is moving as well as the niche sites is it not?
This isn't just a niche site issue is it?
I have a large set of hubs which I probably won't build a website for and which I may in due course - when all the dust has settled move onto a niche channel - except HubPages has still failed to produce one which is suitable.
* There is no Art History sub-channel.
* I just can't bring myself to move art history hubs to a predominantly craft channel
* I'm still waiting patiently for any signs that HubPages understands that the target audience for crafts is significantly different to that for art history.
* I think it's a lost cause because the tenor of the site is overwhelmingly crafty. Nothing against crafts per se - but it's a different audience.
Will- I'm aware the niches have been successful - however it's really rather difficult to move hubs to a non-existent sub-channel!
As a result of which the best use of my time at present is moving content to my own new niche websites where I have total control of my content, my copyright and my income sources. I've been a big believer in niche sites for years. Mine have an upward trend on traffic and steadily increasing income.
I don't mind wading through people's legitimate anxieties about change, but the sheer volume of irrelevance that you generate gets very wearisome. Do we really need to listen to stuff about your website ad infinitum? Will you never grasp that HP understands SEO? Could you, just for once, leave people who care about this website to get on with caring about it?
The real issue is how we as hubbers help HubPages succeed within the Maven structure.
If we can help Maven, we are helping ourselves.
If you've been reading this thread properly instead of just skimming, you'll understand that HubPages is not going to be within the Maven structure, at least to begin with. The HubPages network will continue to exist as it is now, except that it will make use of some Maven infrastructure.
There are two aspects to a situation of this sort. Your suggested approach, which is to be totally uncritical and simply jump in with both feet to support the new bosses, would make sense if we were employees with little or no alternative.
But we are not employees, we are writers with intellectual property to protect. We have the choice to withdraw our intellectual property and use it to earn income elsewhere, if we decide we do not trust the new bosses.
I don't trust the new boss as far as I could throw him, and I am not optimistic about the long-term future of Maven, simply because the guy doesn't have a track record of making anything work for the long term. However, so long as HubPages continues to operate as an independent entity, I will wait and see.
What does Maven have in infrastructure? It seems to me, HubPages has better design and functionality at the moment. If anything, Maven could learn from HubPages.
I am not understanding the business model of Maven.
Do they or do they not make money thru ads? If so, then they are just a smaller version of HubPages.
As of today, hubpages has higher Alexa ranking and better visibility...am I correct?
Why did Maven buy HubPages? Instead of the other way around?
I would agree HubPages' design and functionality are better than Maven, but Maven has more money (because the shark who runs Maven is a good salesman).
Apparently the Maven has some expertise when it comes to ads, and HubPages has already taken their advice and seen improvements in ad revenue. Let's hope that in return, Maven will listen to HubPages' advice on some other things.
Is anyone noticing about a 50% drop in how much money they made this week? All this negative talk that the public can see is hurting us. But it's natural to wonder how it will all shake out.
I have seen a tremendous drop. There has been about a 50% drop in traffic (which is normal at this time of the year). I have also seen about a 350% drop in CPMs.
Yes...and I use Adsense only...lowest numbers I've seen in awhile.
No, the only negative talk is here on the forums and the public are not seeing that. We had an exceptionally good December, and January is looking bad by comparison. However there is another thread going on, where most people are saying January is always slow, and most people are still making more money this January than they did last January.
Your insults never stop do they Will?
Other people come on here and talk about how well their other websites they've created are doing - because of the consensus view that
* it's very unwise to put "all your eggs in one basket" and
* if you are a specialist then it's a sound option to pursue (and doesn;t stop you being on this site as well)
- and you say not a word.
However I reference mine in response to a question asked (and never ever use a link) and you loop the loop. Odd that isn't it? One might consider calling it harassment - because it is very partial when you single out one person isn't it?
+1. I trust Paul and Robin. Doesn't mean I don't want to question the detail.
To be fair, MaM, your advice is often very helpful, but even I sometimes feel that too many of your posts on the forums are about nagging everyone to start their own site. And when you do post, your posts are long and you often post several at once, so you really hammer the point home.
I recall when i was on Helium, I did exactly the same thing. I stopped writing there when I (belatedly) realised what the TOS were, but I stayed on the forums. Eventually people started telling me, essentially, "we know you've got your own own site and that you write on HubPages, and we're fed up with you preaching to us about it, so please tone it down, thanks." I feel you're getting to that point, too.
I used to nag people to start their own sites. In fact, I put my money where my mouth is, and helped several Hubbers do exactly that, often free of charge. Only one of them has actually made a success of it. Finally I realised that some people are just not cut out to run a website. I find that surprising, because it's not that hard (as you've explained), but some people are genuinely happier on a writing site, even with all its limitations and faults. And there aren't any other writing sites worth the candle now, so telling them to leave isn't helpful.
This is a reply to Marisa.
I guess I just am really sad that people are scared to have a go.
I've just got a retired lady to make her own website to back up an exhibition of her art. She wanted me to help her. I told her I was sure she could do it herself, encouraged her to have a go and told her I'd be there for her if she got stuck. Lo and behold , she came back with a website up and running which was very nearly there and just needed some tweaks. I told her what they were and she fixed them and she now has a website she made all on her own! So now she's knows she can do it - and will hopefully go to improve it.
I bang on about people having a go - so that
1) they achieve something I know they can do (a good-looking website is easy peasy now compared to when we started out; anybody who can manage HubPages can create a website on the hosts which help) and
2) because it really is not a good idea to have all your investment of time and effort in one website - especially if that is a third party site.
Bottom line - all I'm saying is have a go.
I know - like I said, I've helped people do it as well. All I'm saying is, perhaps you're pushing it just a little bit too hard.
+1 Marisa and others have many times suggested that I do my own website. I'm sort of half way there,but I keep backing out.
I absolutely know that I should have, and so should every writer. Writing is a tough job. No one site can generate sufficient income (well, seldom). We all need multiple streams of income.
I think it is both kind and wise for them to help other hubbers.
Does anyone have any success contacting the staff at Maven? So far, I sent a few requests and they were ignored.
As far as I'm concerned, it is. Ever since the niche sites launched, HubPages has been nothing more than a clearing house for the niche sites - a mechanism for us to manage our articles. Every new Hub is assessed straight after publication and if it's good enough, moved to a niche site. We are all submitting our Hubs to be moved. Editors are trawling the site for Hubs they may have missed that are suitable for the niche sites. Now that NO quality Hubs are being added to the HubPages.com domain, what do you think Google's assessment of it will be? Eventually Google will write it off, because the dross will outweigh the remaining quality Hubs.
The main site was a dead duck from the moment HubPages decided to create the niche sites. Even HubPages itself thinks it's a failed business model, otherwise they wouldn't have gone to the great expense of creating the niche sites. Anyone who is still relying on the main site was on the road to disappointment even before this merger. Whether this accelerates its demise remains to be seen.
Like you, I've been disappointed at some of the strange decisions they made about the niche site composition. How Performing Arts belongs on a site about board games beats me. But they have said they will be creating some new sites as part of this merger so let's hope the arts get a fair deal this time.
I actually went back and reviewed the original blog post and found something interesting
Title - "HubPages joins Maven"
Body of the text - only references the "HubPages Network"
Question - "What will happen with HubPages and Network Sites?"
the response ONLY references the network sites as in "Network sites have been a central theme of our joint success over the last two years."
Interesting that isn't it? No mention whatsoever of the old HubPages domain.
I'd not noticed before.
The notion that some new sites might be created is the only reason to stick around from what I can see.
I've often thought that Techie types don't understand the arts - apart from music and movies
Thanks for this clarification, it's exactly what I was trying to tell everyone. It's a channel in terms of ads etc. Thank you again lol. I got really frustrated when no one was listening, I can understand the confusion, but it was getting out of hand.
I was listening, but I wasn't convinced it was the same. If you look at Maven, they clearly use the word "channel" to mean something completely different, so I felt it was still highly questionable whether they were using the term some other way for HubPages.
Now that Christy has confirmed it, that's a different story. But her earlier statement used the term "Maven channel" and since Maven uses the word in a particular way on their site, it was more likely to mean what they meant, if you know what I mean.
No Marisa, by everyone I don't mean to point fingers. I definitely wasn't saying people were not listening. Many people here had elevated stress levels the past few days and that's not a good thing. All this time I wasn't saying this is right and that is wrong, I was just trying to point to the other possibility. Something which made a lot of sense from what Paul said on the blog and what Christy said on the forum here. I agree that it was confusing, but to put it in PDs words, waiting with pitchforks is bad for health.
That's why I think we need to get away from terminology which is being used by the two different organisations in different ways - and get some charts drawn of how the relationships work
Kristy: Will this include informing people FAR in advance if we are going to switch to Maven's TOS?
I forgot my wordpress password (sad...) so I couldn't comment on the blog but I think this is VERY exciting news and can't wait to see what the future holds!
It sounds exciting, but I can't help but be concerned about what kind of changes this will mean for us. Things have been going so well, and now we are being "acquired." That sounds scary.
Maven has a great network of wonderful partners and I’m pleased to see that they feel so strong about HubPages to commit to purchasing HP content. That’s a great reflection on the business HubPages has created.
HubPages has been working hard at improving hubs and organizing meaningful vertical niche sites, which has been adding value—not only for the business, but for all of us who have been writing articles on HubPages.
I look forward to the acquisition and to the additional niche sites for our articles. Great work, Paul. And congratulations to all the staff.
Purchasing HP content? Does this mean we no longer will own our own content?
I think Glenn means, purchasing the rights that HubPages holds, to display our content and earn income from it.
The terminology I used may be misleading. Drop the word "content." They are purchasing HubPages. Nothing is changing as far as copyright ownership as far as I can tell from the statements.
They need our writers and content. All those lovely posts they can run ads on. They should have a pretty big upsurge once the content is on their site.
Maven are purchasing a platform for advertising i.e. generating money
The means to generate the advertising is the content.
The content belongs to Hubbers not HubPages - unless written by their employees (i.e. editors)
The traffic that generates the advertising income follows the content - i.e. not the platform per se
HubPages found out that it's foolish to think you are buying content - because the content can walk with its owner - as it did after the Squidoo transfer - and there was nothing they could do about it.
(i.e. a lot of content left Squidoo BEFORE the transfer and a lot more content left HubPages after the transfer and after the final due payments to authors had cleared. Then more content left etc.)
Just reciting facts.
I was part of all that. I had an account before Squidoo and a second account generated when Squidoo closed. A lot of the writers did not stay due to being upset with Squidoo, the sudden change and we did get some negative and snobby commentary by existing HP writers. Staff here were good, did what they could. But, few of the Squidoo writers felt co-operative at that time. It could have been much different if Squidoo had given us more time. Anyway, that is history now. But, people can learn from history, I hope.
Congrats Paul and the rest of the team. Just out of curiosity, since you say the entire team will be joining Maven. Are you moving to Seattle? Either way, I wish you guys success.
There's just one thing from your blog post which wasn't clear to me:
Could you please elaborate on this statement: We will look for opportunities for select Hubbers to migrate to Maven’s user experience after careful testing and extensive planning.
The HP team will be working closely with Maven, but we will be keeping our office in Oakland, CA.
Now we got to study up on https://www.themaven.net/
Let me know if you find their "Learning Center"
I tell ya, this whole thing really is a shocker; but it looks like it is going to be a very gradual process (famous last words).
Yes, they clearly mentioned it. It will take at least one hour in moving content to Maven in a slow, step-by-step process. So, you have ample time to get acquainted with the new platform.
I hope everything will be for the betterment of us, writers.
Thanks, paradigmsearch, for the links. Those Maven blogs are interesting.
So far, it seems to me there are very little activities on the Maven site. Few postings... and articles are few and the site does jot seem to be updated very often.
My submission of questions to the staff was not responded to...
The best item I found so far is a video on the secret of happiness...
I'm really glad you guys don't have to move Makes life a lot easier.
@Christy -- I know this will sound stupid, but will "I" go with HP?
@Christy...Oakland??? When did HP move out of the Minna St. location in SF???
(Though admittedly, that's not a great area...)
Sherry, I wouldn't let yourself feel too worried. I think that you'll find this is a very good thing for HubPages writers. Even if the standards for submissions go up, that can only benefit us in the end.
"Seattle-Based Maven to Acquire Oakland-Based HubPages: Digital Media Deal to Dramatically Accelerate Maven’s Growth"
https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/ … ital-Media
Wow this is a big deal, what an amazing opportunity for the Hubpages network.
Are the new bosses gonna let me continue to post nonsense about bad movies and heavy metal music?
If so... then I guess I'm OK with this. (shrugs)
Can we please have some plain language on what this will mean for the future of the network sites, the writers and our content? Phrases like "monetization synergies and shared technology" are very vague and don't really tell us anything about exactly what's happening here.
How will this acquisition affect daily business?
Will we still have the HP ad program?
Will writers still be dealing with the same staff we have gotten to know over the years?
Are any of the rules for creating content going to change?
Will the niche sites stay the same?
Will the brand "HubPages" still exist in any way?
Are we going to be working with the same platform or will we have to get used to something new?
HubPages was a small company run by people who seemed to really care about what was happening with it. Writers and staff got to know each other. That's what made it the best place to write online.
I hope this change is a good one, but honestly it is pretty terrifying. I for one would really appreciate some plain speak on what exactly is going to happen here and how it will practically affect writers.
I was also wondering if HubPages will live on after this Maven merger is complete? Does anyone have experience with Maven?
All great questions, Eric. I asked many of them myself on the original blog post. I haven't gotten any answers yet. Hopefully, yours will be answered. I'll stay tuned...
HubPages and our Network Sites will continue to be managed and maintained as/is, which includes our earnings programs.
HubPages is also keeping all current staff members including employees like myself as well as everyone in management (including Paul Edmondson and Paul Deeds).
Additionally, some HubPages authors may eventually be invited to create their own channels with Maven, plus HubPages and our Network Sites will benefit from Maven's brand authority and recognition. We genuinely believe this will be a positive change for HubPages authors.
If what you say is true about HP being maintained as is, what does this snippet from today's PR about the takeover mean? Relaunched usually means a new look and feel and "migrated to Maven’s publishing and community platform" also indicates a new look and feel.
From the PR:
HubPages’ network will be migrated to Maven’s publishing and community platform, relaunched as part of a single premium network, on one platform for advertisers.
The Network Sites will continue to exist and will be absorbed into the Maven Network as channels under the existing Maven Segments, but we have no planned changes to the HubPages Earnings Program at this time. Network Sites will keep their names and existing content, and we will continue selecting new content to be moved there from HubPages as well.
"New content," meaning not updated content. So we need to write new hubs, right? What would be the cut off years for moving new(er) hubs: 2015, 2016?
I think she meant that new hubs would go through a QAP and be selected as they always have, not that only new content would be moved.
Yes, TIMETRAVELER2 is right. I just meant that articles will be selected from new, updated, and edited content on HubPages as usual.
Kristy: Can you explain how we will be able to keep our niche site URLs under these conditions? If they are absorbed as channels under the Maven umbrella, wouldn't they have to be redirects? This is a big concern.
I think that only select content will be featured by maven.com and other content will be as redirects to respective niche sites. But, original hubpages.com will remain independent and not taken by maven.com as per their statement. They are migrating only 27 sites.
Normally when a company merges, the new one takes over. They promise nothing will change, but it all does in a gradual way. Soon Maven will make all the rules, and we probably have to be chosen to be writers or invited to be part of Maven (that was already made clear). It means HP is dead and we have to change everything, even if it takes a few months. I've never seen a merge where the same language was used, and it worked differently. I am retired, but worked at enough companies that "merged" to know the score.
And I was just rushing to get all my pictures good by the 15th. Damn.
I have to agree with you. Associated Content disappeared when it 'merged' with yahoo. And it happened with a few others as well. Writers always got screwed. I'm hoping that because Paul and Robin are pretty decent sort of people with an outstanding record that maybe this is not going to happen here, but my experience is it goes the other way.
Jean, my experience with takeovers is exactly the same as yours, but I have to correct you on one point:
We do NOT have to wait to be invited to join Maven. We will continue to be allowed to write for the niche sites, even once they're part of Maven. However, we won't have any rights to write for the other channels on Maven, we have to wait to be invited to do that.
I read some of the info again, and you are right. I hope the way we write on HP doesn't change too fast, as you know computer changes don't easily agree with me.
But for now, I guess it's OK to just wait and see. I have been back to all my work since the picture changes (and have learned to read directions before I jump)! Most of my articles are of a magazine quality, as I had a lot of rewriting to do, and I think most of them are better now. I have ten to go. Hooray!
It's best not to panic.
Marisa: I don't think that's how it is going to work. I think HP will remain exactly as it is but will be owned by Maven. This is why the URLs will not change. Maven may invite individuals to write for their channels, but I don't think they'll switch entire niche sites over because they already, in a sense, will be considered the same thing as channels.
The basic HP site will continue to exist as a source for new articles for the niches. So, for this reason I think the hub tool, stats pages, etc will remain the same.
What probably will change is the payment platform. Maven has stated that it wants to move away from Google and Facebook as sources of revenue. If this is true, then Adsense could disappear...although I cannot imagine this happening. I also wonder whether we'll still be able to place Amazon ads on our posts because the writeup claimed that no advertising will appear on articles.
People will have to buy subscriptions to read the articles and Maven, I guess, will place ads on their home page, but I can't see any other way we'll get revenue. I really hate this thought, but it is what it is. Can't see how this will help us to earn more, but who knows?
@Christy, or ANYONE -- will "I" be a part of HubPages, or just be thrown away like worn-out shoes?
Kenneth, Christy explained that we will stay with HP. However, some Hubbers will also be invited to post on the Maven platform. No one's being left in the lurch. Breathe easy, Kenneth!
From Maven's site:
Maven is an expert-driven, group media network, whose innovative platform serves, by invitation-only, a coalition of professional, independent channel partners.
By providing broader distribution, greater community engagement and efficient advertising and membership programs, Maven enables partners to focus on the key drivers of their business: creating, informing, sharing, discovering, leading and interacting with the communities and constituencies they serve.
Dozens of award-winning journalists, best-selling authors, top analysts, important causes and foundations are bringing their organizations to Maven’s coalition of elite content channels. See coverage of the Founder's Conference and watch the video to hear Maven partners in their own words:
They have the HubPages acquisition announcement front and center on their homepage. They are also a publicly traded company.
theMaven, Inc. (MVEN) stock price is up 12% today on the HubPages acquisition news.
Seattle-Based Maven to Acquire Oakland-Based HubPages: Digital Media Deal to Dramatically Accelerate Maven’s Growth
Business Wire Business WireJanuary 5, 2018
@ Rock_nj or WHOMEVER: am I just being ignored by these posts? I have asked Christy or anyone, now you, and I was only asking WILL this MOVE by HubPages Leave Me in "Nowheresville?" Just a simple yes or no will be okay.
Kenneth, nobody knows what is happening. It seems like anyone currently writing for HubPages will be able to continue to do so (yes, that means YOU) but staff seems to have no time or desire to field the questions in this thread, so nobody knows for sure.
For such a big announcement it would be nice to have more info.
@EricDockett -- "a Sincere Thank YOU for the response. I would hope that all of us will be included in the move, as I have a lot of New hubs that I did in my Two Weeks Holiday Vacation and they need to start making me some cash. Just kidding. I would go happily if I only had 20 hubs."
The blog post said HubPages writers would continue to be able publish, but certain writers would be provided an opportunity to work with Maven, which I guess means more prestige and potential earnings. So, yes you will be able to carry on as you have, if they are true to their word. Of course, some of the formatting and publishing policies might change (as if we need more of that!)
Why do you keep posting this? Do you think you, in particular, will be left out?
Per the PR on the newswire:
HubPages’ network will be migrated to Maven’s publishing and community platform, relaunched as part of a single premium network, on one platform for advertisers.
Looks like HubPages will be folded into Maven. They have been upgrading HP's look over the past year or so with Maven's help it sounds like. Are they going to throw all these improvements out and go to a new Maven-based look?
I hope not, the HubPages look platform perfectly suits my writing.
When I looked at the Maven site, it appeared to me to be more of a magazine style site rather than a content farm type of site. Looks extremely professional, which makes me think that only a handful of writers here will be invited to join Maven.
I'm finding all of this very confusing
I agree I don't know where my writing would fit in but I did notice that they have someone writing about cars. You could be the perfect 'partner'.
I didn't like their site either. Very dark and the navigation seems broken.
More PR info about Maven:
Nov 17, 2017
SEATTLE -- Maven (ticker symbol: MVEN) today announced that its monthly traffic is climbing at an accelerated rate – from 900,000 unique users in September to 3.6 million in October, with the trend line continuing in November.
This seems thrilling yet kinda scary at the same time. Well, here's hoping only for the best!
It will be interesting to see what they changes mean. I only just recently got back into writing for HubPages and things already were different.
Joining Maven is all about the opportunity to better serve independent publishers and passionate experts.
Eric, I saw your questions and it's imperative to the success of writers to get more traffic and better earnings without worrying about the technical aspects that go on under the covers - We share this. Maven has programs that our different than ours. It's invite only and they get stock.
Our niche sites are performing really well and we are going to build on this for all the little guys and bring you better monetization, tools, and ways to communicate with your audience.
Our first area of focus is going to be on monetization. We believe we can improve yields. So, we are going to do that first.
We will keep you updated on all the plans as we get to know our new team.
It would be nice to have the share buttons back. I generate a decent amount of traffic by sharing my articles.
Thanks for the additional info.
Thanks Paul. I appreciate your response, and I'm all for finding new ways to earn more money. But as of yet nobody has addressed my questions.
Christy's responses are adding to my confusion. First she says the network sites will exist "as/is", and then she says they will be absorbed into the maven network.
Which is it? Will pethelpful. com continue to exist, or will it become themaven. net/pethelpful or something similar?
People have a lot of questions, from what happen to the niche sites, to how our earnings will be distributed, to whether or not we will still own our content, and many others. You've dropped a bomb on a Friday afternoon and a lot of us are going to be extremely nervous over the weekend in the absence of clear answers.
I guess you don't owe us anything, but a little transparency would go a long way right about now.
Perhaps we should be offered shares in the company:) It never crossed my mind that we might not still own our content. Every time we have a new event here, it reminds me that with all the changes I don't have complete backups of all my content with all the alterations over the years.
It's always a good idea to back up your work right after you create or edit it. I keep special pages on spreadsheets specifically for this purpose. Also, dating those articles can be very helpful with filing DMCA complaints.
Do you back them up on an external drive? How do you save them, as a webpage or? .................Would be good to know if there is a method of saving all of them without having to open up each one and save .............
The fastest and most effective way (as long as you have plenty of space on your computer) is to go into your account. Right click on each article link, then left click on 'save linked content as'. Or the equivalent in your browser.
Have a folder ready and save each hub there. Everything will be saved: images, even the ads. You'll see a separate folder for each hub plus the actual file. When you want to see it, click on it and it will be displayed in your browser as a complete page.
Thanks, I will have to spend some time this weekend saving them:)
Thanks for this. I can't believe how easy and fast it is.
I did that with my old Squidoo lenses when we moved to HP, but I don't know if I did something wrong, because they were all messed up after they got moved. Today I just copy the whole page and put it in Word and save it as a word.doc. I already have a map on my pc for each individual hub containing the photos I used in that hub, so I put the word.doc there too.
If I right click on the link in My Account I am given only an option to save as HTML file but if I open the hub I am given an option to save a complete webpage. I think I should be doing the later. Am I correct?
I don't really want to save the files in 'downloads' which is what the save button seems to default to!
If you save as "complete webpage" you get a folder which has all the little files associated with a page - completely unreadable
If you save as an html file then it's readable and the links work
You should also be able to vary where you save to.
It was only a chance remark by Glenn, who isn't a HubPages staffer. There is no question AT ALL - WE WILL STILL OWN OUR CONTENT. HubPages doesn't have the legal right to sell our copyright, only their right to publish our articles on their sites.
Thanks for helping clarify my statement Marisa. I should have just said "They are purchasing HubPages." Adding the word content was confusing. As you clarified, the purchase does not include copyright. It's the same as when HubPages purchased Squidoo content—The authors still owned the copyright and were free to do what they wanted with their content.
Abso-friggin-lutely. No one (e.g. HubPages, Maven) owns your content and so they can't sell what they don't own. You would have to voluntarily enter into a separate agreement to change that.
Perhaps this overview will make things a bit more clear. The Maven network consists of segments, which are topic-specific (think family, money, politics, etc). Each segment contains multiple channels which are run and managed by Maven's partners and include many diverse perspectives and voices. The HubPages Network Sites will each become channels within their respective appropriate segments. Those channels will still be run by HubPages and will function much as they do right now.
Authors will still compose works on HubPages and potentially have them selected for the appropriate Network Site/channel and will continue to earn via the HubPages Earnings Program.
Yes, I understand now. No more niche sites. (pethelpful. com, etc) Thanks for the clarification.
That makes me nervous, so what if there's no segment dedicated to certain types of content that are on the niche sites.
And what will happen if the niche sites no longer exist.
The Network Sites will be kept whole, under their existing names, with all of their existing content.
Except they wont be sites anymore. They will be parts of another site.
And if that's true then wouldn't it just become another content farm that Google hates.
All of Mavens channels are under one URL, wasn't that the biggest problem with Hubpages a couple years back hence the individual sites.
If the sites get phased in with the other channels and they all maintain the same site's URL, then it's basically a high end content farm.
That's the thing that concerns me most. Maven is only six months old. I suspect it's doing well in spite of its content farm structure, because I've seen similar sites do well in the short term, only to fall foul of Google's penalties after a year or so.
Christy clarified that above. She said "The Network Sites will be kept whole, under their existing name".
...but they will be under one URL, which changes things considerably. This makes me think that a move like this is a step backwards.
Christy made that very clear TT: "Network Sites and all their articles will be keeping their existing URLs"
...however, as I understand it, the articles they now have online are all under one URL. How is THAT going to work???
Read the rest of the discussion. Don't use Threaded view or you are missing things in this forum. Switch to Chronological View.
I think she has been reading the rest of the discussion. Like TT2, I feel it's still not clear. One minute Christy is saying (and I quote), "The Network Sites will continue to exist and will be absorbed into the Maven Network as channels ", the next minute she's saying they will keep their own URL's.
As things stand right this minute, that's clearly impossible. The only way I can see it working, is if Maven is going to change its structure so that each of its channels has its own URL (which I think would be a sensible move, but it hasn't been mentioned).
See Christy's use of the ".com"?
That means the separate sites will remain.
A channel can be a separate website. AdSense has used the two terms almost interchangeably for years.
I have a feeling they'll turn those channels into separate sites like Glenn said and integrate their existing content with our content and network sites.
Hubpages has been trying to please Google for years, why would they risk becoming a content farm given how successful the niche sites have been.
Actually, I hadn't looked at the site when I posted that. Although they are all on the same URL, each channel is on a sub-folder and each one is constructed like a completely separate blog or website.
In fact, it looks rather like it's a blogging platform like Wordpress.com or Blogger, except it's very picky about who's allowed to set up a site. They're claiming that the existing channels have been set up by award-winning journalists and writers.
Although there is some good stuff on the niche sites, I don't see any of them as being quite in the same league. If they reallly are going to become channels, then I think Maven is taking a risk.
That's good to hear Christy, I was concerned about that too since I see Maven places all their niche sites (channels) under the main site's URL. We already learned how powerfully profitable it is to separate all the topics under individual sites. I wonder if Maven will follow HubPages' methods and do the same thing, dividing all their 37 channels into individual sites. Was there any talk about that?
It seems like there is some confusion around the URLs of the Network Sites. HubPages Network Sites and all their articles will be keeping their existing URLs (PetHelpful.com, WeHaveKids.com, etc).
So just to be clear, they will not be channels on the Maven site, i.e. they won't have themaven.net in their URL at all?
How does that square with the other statement you made, ie. "The Network Sites will continue to exist and will be absorbed into the Maven Network as channels ".
The existing Maven network sites are all on the main URL. So if the niche sites are keeping their own URL's, does that mean Maven is going to switch to separate URL's as well? Or what? If not, how can you call two completely different structures "channels" in the same network? I'm confused.
The sites will be keeping their existing domains, plus receiving additional benefits of being Maven channels (including some PR and marketing benefits). This is an acquisition. HubPages and its sites will continue to operate, but as a subsection of Maven, organizationally.
That does help clear things up. The keyword is "organizationally."
But that still leaves me wondering if Maven will learn from HubPages for their own content, or will they continue to put everything under one roof as a content farm until Google kills them off?
If I were to be selected to write for Maven, I would turn it down under the present platform configuration.
Hi Glenn, I don't know the answer to that and I don't think the team would be able to discuss Maven's future plans so soon.
What I can say is that an invitation is definitely not an obligation. We will not be requiring HubPages authors to accept any invitations to create new Maven channels who do not want to.
I'm still confused, can you explain what Christy means, Glenn? I know for sure that the network sites will remain as they are. So we are going to find all pet articles under pethelpful.com where does maven come into play? Are we just using them for their tech and adbase, etc. and in this sense pethelpful belongs to maven (organizationally) or am I missing something? It's 2am forgive any grammar and spelling errors.
EDIT: Christy or someone else feel free to clarify too
I'm in the same boat as you Brandon. The part that's clear now is that the physical structure of HubPages remains the same. Maven acquired the organization.
In addition, they may invite certain Hubbers to write content on their platform. That would be a new channel for each author as I see it. But all channels are under one domain, which makes it a content farm. So as I said before, I wouldn't want to waste my time writing for Maven. I'll just keep writing hubs for our own network niche sites (plus the new ones coming along down the line).
What I find surprising is that, if you look more closely, the existing channels are not just writers contributing to categories created by Maven. No, what has happened is that Maven has approached indivdiuals and organisations, and persuaded them to move their whole website over to Maven. Each "channel" is one of those websites. So, if you were invited to be a writer, you'd be invited to create a whole new channel which would be, effectively, your own website.
If you look at the reviews, companies move because it means they don't have to worry about maintenance or monetization, and there are some very good features to encourage reader engagement. I am surprised website owners would be willing to give up their own domain to become just a sub-folder, but it appears to work for some.
That structure seems so different from HubPages that I'm not quite sure where they see synergies, I must say.
That makes me feel a little better, Hubpages will sort of be like a subsidiary to Maven like Alphabet to Google in a way. I'm also glad they'll be able to keep their domains.
This is a huge shake-up, the content creators need to be in the know, they're the ones who supply this network.
Here's an example of a Maven channel:
The channel is called Global Lead, but you can see clearly that the channel is set up as a subfolder of themaven.net.
How are they going to manage to make a completely separate website, with its own URL, part of that same system? Or are you just saying that HubPages will be owned by Maven but will continue to be run separately?
I know the word "channel" can have several meanings, but it usually has just one meaning on a particular site. Maven calls their subfolders channels.
Marisa see my latest response to this thread. I'm assuming it's something of that sort.
I'm beginning to think the same - that Maven has bought the HubPages network and will be applying some of its technical improvements, but it's essentially separate. However I want to push Christy to clarify that, because she clearly said the niche sites would become Maven channels. In Maven jargon, a "channel" is a sub-folder on their main site. It's careless use of language like that which starts misconceptions in this kind of situation.
If there's one thing I know it's that if you want to keep people onboard while you go through a change like this (i.e. when a merger / takeover happens) you need to implement some pretty standard change management techniques
1) a prepared script of what has happened and
2) FAQs that explain what it all means in PLAIN LANGUAGE
3) both available as an easy to access document in pdf form that can be downloaded - for 'staff' to read
Then you don't get people being confused and you don't get anybody departing from the agreed script.
Now we've got the blog post - but obviously that's' not working given the questions - so I'd say they need to take the queries and comments and work them up into a second FAQs which have been cleared as "OK to say"
All that then happens is they update the FAQs as new queries arise and nobody ever responds on the hoof. Standard response is "we'll get back to you" followed by "here's the FAQs update" (using a version control)
Plus ALL statements and FAQs in language that is meaningful for every body - not the technical language.
"So here's the technical version and here's what that means"
I'm still somewhat stunned, but trying to absorb. I took a look at the link you provided, Marisa. I see what you are saying. Maven.com is the main site, but they seem to host a variety of blogs/websites.
I clicked on one called The WeedBlog which had a URL in the post theweedblog.com. When I clicked on that it took me to maven.com/theweedblog.
So, it seems to me that even when your site is parked on Maven, there is a unique domain that is then re-directed to a Maven channel. Am I understanding that correctly?
Yes, you understand it well. Thats exactly what I was pointing out earlier about a few other channels I checked. Sally found one channel that was indeed stand-alone and not redirected back to themavel.net - but I'm not sure that was one of their channels. She didn't say how she found it.
All the current "channels" on Maven are websites which once existed as stand-alone websites, but have decided to become part of the Maven network. So naturally, they've 301 redirected their old website name, so they don't lose traffic.
If you look further down the page on their Network page, you'll see a whole list of "coming soon" channels. Click on them and you'll see they are all stand-alone websites at the moment.
Thank you for sharing the information, Christy! I was very concerned about losing the URL.
That's what I figured. All is well.
And for anyone who is interested, Maven's TOU is pretty much the same as HP's has always been:
https://www.themaven.net/the-maven/page … KQnpC4KDVw
I'll leave it to others to ferret out any differences.
One thing I noticed is that they are going to ask people to pay to access their site. I think this could present a BIG problem for page views.
That's clear Christy, but what everyone is wondering is what Maven will do with content published on their site? Presently they have all their channels under the main site's URL. I see that some authors have their own URLs—but they just redirect to the published content under themaven.net.
Yed there was definitely confusion. I asked quite clearly if the websites would be keeping their .com domain names and nobody responded clearly. Instead you said they would become channels within the new site. To me that means they would be structured under the new company's domain.
If they are keeping their domain names along with the .com suffixes that is a good thing. That means they are separate websites and not absorbed into the other site.
Eric: That's not what she said. Read it again. Niche sites will be moved to Maven and become channels managed by the HP team.
Read the whole thread. She said several conflicting things at several different times.
Also: If you look at the Maven site, a "channel" seems to be nothing more than a subfolder on their site. It is a website that once existed on its own domain but was migrated to the maven site.
It is no longer a site. It is a subfolder of a bigger site.
Call it a channel if you want, but that's what it is.
So, by that terminology, if a niche site become a "channel" it will be nothing more than a subfolder, which is the exact architecture we moved away from when HP developed the niche site.
This is why Christy needs to be very clear with her language. Telling me it's a "channel" means nothing to me. I want to know whether it will still still exist as its own url.
She has since said it will. That's good. In my opinion, doing otherwise will undermine all of the gains made by the niche sites. However, there is now the question of whether that url will be redirected to the maven site.
That would be bad.
This is why Eric has a 100 for his hubber score. lol
I hope they keep them on their own domains, because if they don't, then it's a really bad indication regarding where this new Maven takeover is heading. Why destroy all the efforts to have stand alone sites, and just send them back to the content farm?
On another note, does anyone else think that a change of this magnitude should be broadcast to the entire HubPages community via an email? Not everyone hangs out and checks these forums. Seems like everyone connected to HubPages needs to know about this major change.
Yes. I know, and I read where she said that. And that's awesome. My comment that TT2 quoted was made before Christy said that.
But Marisa has also rightly pointed out that no other "channel" on the maven site has its own domain.
And the press release says:
HubPages’ network will be migrated to Maven’s publishing and community platform, relaunched as part of a single premium network, on one platform for advertisers.
Someone else mentioned urls redirecting to maven.
Frankly, I don't feel like anything is clear at this point. I am hoping that the new week brings more specific info from Paul and staff.
Paul dropped a hint when he said HubPages would be helping Maven with their network structure.
I'm guessing that could mean Maven is going to change so that each of their channels has its own URL, too. If that's the case then I can see why Paul can't say so specifically, because he can't speak on behalf of Maven.
But maven's current "channels" seem to be former websites that surely had their own domains. Why on Earth would they have moved them away from those domains only to now decide to move them back?
We are neck-deep in the speculation at this point and I feel like we've gone well beyond anything that could be considered productive. I do hope hubpages staff makes it a priority to get into these forums in the coming days and start to clear some of this up.
Perhaps because Maven has realised that getting rid of the separate URL's has been counter-productive?
The old domains still exist - if you check, you'll find they're 301 redirected to the channel. So it would be easy enough to move them back.
I agree that we're neck-deep in speculation, but the fact remains that both Christy AND Paul have said, categorically, that the URL's won't change. But they've also said, categorically, that the niche sites will be channels. Right now, both you and Glenn are saying, "one of those must be a lie because they both can't be true". There is one way they can both be true, and I've just suggested it.
Well for whatever it's worth I hope you're right.
I'd like them to explain what he means by "20 verticals with a 1,000 channels"
Is Hubpages a "vertical"?
Marisa, please don’t put words in my mouth. Especially words I never said.
I never said one of those is a lie. In fact, the way I explained it—they are both true. I don’t see why that is confusing, unless people don’t understand what a 301 redirect is (HubPages does it all the time when a hub is moved to a vertical niche site). I even gave links to the quotes In my previous post. One said the niche sites will be channels. That’s true. The other said that the URLs won’t change. Also true. It does not follow, logically, that one of those must be false. They can indeed both be true.
The point I was making is that the unchanged URLs will NOT be stand-alone sites. If the same procedure is done as Maven is doing now, the unchanged URLs of our niche sites will redirect to a channel where they will be hosted. The channels are all hosted under “themaven.net” presently. That’s the bad part of all this because that’s a content farm.
If your explanation (that the existing URL's will be 301 redirected to a channel) is indeed what they mean, then it is, at the very least, a weasel way with words, but I would classify it as a lie.
If there is a 301 redirect from the existing URL to a channel, then it's true that the URL of the niche site still exists. However, the niche site is no longer at that URL. The URL is simply its old address.
It's exactly the same as when you move house and redirect your mail. If you said, "no, no, my address won't change", you would be lying.
I really don't get the confusion. Don't you people set up channels on adsense? Are you moving your urls to adsense.com/my-url
A channel on maven right now is sub-folders but it may just be that they categorise channels internally for their ad network. So in that sense, the niche sites will be channels on the maven network but at the same time they are not going to be touched, they will remain at www.nichesite. com
My last comment on this thread until someone from the staff says something. There's just too much speculating going on here.
Never a bad thing to say nothing, when there is nothing to say. I have a feeling that staff understand the risks, so I reckon it's best to leave it to them. Until they mess up. Then we have the joy of justifiable outrage, lol.
Okay, I can agree with the way you’re saying it now. Both their statements are correct, but they just aren’t saying the complete consequence of it as you had just elaborated on.
For those who don’t understand what we’re discussing here—it’s the same thing as when hubs are moved to a niche site. The old url on HubPages still exists, and it is 301 redirected to the actually physical location of the hub where it now resides on the niche site. That’s done to avoid a broken link in case the Hubber put the old url on a social media site. Its also done so that the 301 tells Google to update its index.
Maven does the 301 redirect in the opposite way, which is unfortunate. The once physical site is now moved to a subdirectory under themaven.net, which they call a channel, and the old url is redirected to that channel.
We’re on the same page Marisa. I just wouldn’t call what Paul and Christy said a lie. It’s just a partial truth without a complete explanation. The truth is easy to find—anyone who looks at the url field in their browser when they visit any Maven hosted channel will see that it ends up hosted on their home site.
At some point I think we need to define the term "content farm", because the word is always thrown out there and scares the sh-- out of people. Every site that has a lot of varied content or channels to content, I would say is not a "content farm". Gawker Media, as an example, has varied sites connected to it that you can go to through each site; for instance, if you go to Life Hacker, you can get to Jezebel from there, and so on. Look, start here: https://jalopnik.com/
There are other examples of this and variations on it.
Another example is the site Medium. It's basically a collective of writers, some have become very well-known. This, I would think, is similar to what it would mean to become a writer for Maven, as they are saying they will choose from Hubpages writers; for certain they are probably looking for very unique writers, not those who dish out sales pages, etc.
Because Maven doesn't know what works and Paul does? Maybe Paul is not only bringing traffic but expertise? And maybe Paul has to prove that expertise which is why it is a contract rather than a sale.
But Christy also said our niche sites will be “absorbed into the Maven Network as channels under the existing Maven Segments.”
That contradicts her later statement. It isn’t clear what it means since it could mean a 301 redirection, as I see Maven doing now. To me that means our niche sites will be moved to subdomains under themaven.net same as the existing “channels” are hosted now. Using individual URLs is useles if all they do is redirect to a subdirectory under the home site.
Christy, if you see this, I would like to see some clarification on this confusion, or a retraction of your statement I linked below if it was wrong. This is the most important issue since placing channels (or niche sites) under the home domain is going back to the old method that was a proven failure.
Source of Christy’s quote: https://hubpages.com/forum/post/2933837
Christy has made it very clear over and over again and in reply to you directly as well Glenn. See the below replies which are after the one you have just linked out to.
https://hubpages.com/community/forum/14 … ost2933880
https://hubpages.com/community/forum/14 … ost2933899
https://hubpages.com/community/forum/14 … ost2933921
What it means is that the niche sites will work as channels in a sense that they will be sharing the same ad network etc and technology, probably maybe something else. I'm not too sure about this. But the important thing is that every article on the niche sites will remain as they are on the same URL and will have no mention of the word maven in the URL.
Thanks Brandon. Unfortunately she is saying the same thing in those links you gave.
In the first link she says “The HubPages Network Sites will each become channels within their respective appropriate segments”.
That means to me that they will become subdomains. Look at how Maven is doing it now with channels. They are all subdirectories. Some have unique URLs, but those simply redirect to the subdirectory where it’s hosted.
In the second link she says “The Network Sites will be kept whole, under their existing names, with all of their existing content.”
But that doesn’t make it clear if these “existing names” will be redirected URLs as Maven is doing now.
In the third link she says “HubPages Network Sites and all their articles will be keeping their existing URLs.”
Once again, that doesn’t make it clear if these existing URLs will redirect to a subdirectory as Maven is doing with all their channels.
See my point?
Actually, I don't. As she says they will remain as pethelpful.com and not just pethelpful. If you go to the other thread which Marisa started (the one with the facts of the merger) and read the CNN article and other news pieces this is not a merger but Hubpages will be functioning as a daughter company owned by Maven. So Hubpages as an entity is going to retain the domains it owns (even though at the end of the day they may be the property of Maven). But the technology and know-how and other advantages will be shared. I'm thinking the ad partners are the biggest take-away here.
Paul and the others have put in a lot of work to get the niches sites to where they are today and they don't get a complete payout (not the right choice of words, but I hope you get the idea) until the 3 year period is done. So, it's very unlikely that they would agree to go back to folders on a website, one of the reasons HP did so bad in the first place.
I hope you're right. Perhaps the "channels" for the niche sites will be of a different nature from the ones used by Maven so far.
I understand what you're saying, but the fact remains that presently Maven is using individual URLs for each channel that do a 301 redirect to a subdirectory on the home site where each channel is hosted. That's different from how HubPages is doing it, where each niche site is truly a separate domain without being redirected back to HubPages.
The most bothersome thing Christy said is that “The HubPages Network Sites will each become channels within their respective appropriate segments.” Unless Maven changes the way they host their respective channels, Christy's statement means that our niche sites will be hosted by Maven under subdirectories of Maven.
Paul, will the niche sites continue to look the same? Will this change the experience for our readers?
Thanks for that update. Sounds like things won't change drastically here so I can go along and update, fix and create new posts.
I just feel a bit uncomfortable with the word "Acquire". Why does it sound like a purchase to me?
Because it is, viryabo. Maven is buying the HubPages network. That means they are also buying the right that HubPages has to publish our articles. But that's all HubPages can sell - the rights. They can't sell our copyright, because that belongs to us.
Thank you for the clarification Marisa. Glad we still own our content.
What I'm worried about is what some have expressed. So, if somewhere down the line, Mavin goes down (hope not), do we /our works follow suit?
Er - yes, of course. That is always a risk when you write on any site you don't own yourself. Businesses close down all the time, and their employees and customers very often get no warning - no company is ever going to advertise that it's in trouble. The writers on Helium, Squidoo, Associated Content, Today, Zujava and many other writing sites were all shocked when those sites closed. You should always work on the assumption that a site may not last, that's just life on the internet.
The difference is that Squidoo was already floundering. We could all see that our pages had dropped like stones in Google search. Earnings plummeted and the management didn't seem too invested in trying to put things right. Many had been complaining for months, years even, that the poor quality cr*p was dragging the site down.
HubPages, on the other hand, is flying high, so there's no reason to think it will follow Squidoo et al down the pan.
She says, hopefully.
Anyway, didn't Maven pay $3m for HP? Not much, come to think of it. Wouldn't buy you a decent house in London.
I wrote for Helium before I wrote on here and everything suddenly disappeared one day without any warning. It was horrible. It was a fun site to write for, if not very lucrative. I wish I'd joined HubPages from the get-go instead.
Actually there was plenty of warning - but just like here (or any other writing site, for that matter) , it's easy to get left out of the loop if you're not active on forums, or you're not getting email notifications for some reason.
Helium was sold to RR Donnelly, and they decided to split the site up into niche sites, just like HubPages has done. However they managed it really, really badly and the whole thing failed because of their incompetence in making the transition.
Oh man, I was feeling pretty good about this new direction but I worry about the TOS. The thing that bothers me the most is that it allows the company to modify what we have written without our consent or approval and I don't like the idea that something could appear to be coming from me when it was changed by somebody else without my input or approval.
I'm hoping there is something we're not aware of - for instance, it may be that the TOS applies only to the over-arching Maven site, and that each of the sub-sites has their own TOS which is different. However, I'm still worried because the Maven TOS doesn't say that, and therefore in a legal battle, I'd expect the parent company's TOS could be deemed to apply.
I've written for a lot of networks/ sites which disappeared. Always keep a back up of your content, or expect to lose it next time you login and discover the site has posted a thanks for all the fish notice. Wayback Machine won't help you find your posts if it has been blocked from accessing the site. As far as I know the only thing to do is keep a copy of everything you post, and changes you make to update it.
My concern here is that regardless of what Paul Edmonton says, hubpages has been bought. It is now not owned by Paul, or have I got that wrong. Ergo, Maven can essentially do what they like. In my experience, when I've written for other content sites, once they are bought by another site, the writers don't do well. And that frightens the hell out of me.
Apparently there is a contractual agreement that states HP will remain as is, will be managed by the team and will function as a subsidiary of Maven. Most subsidiary companies function as before but with a certain amount of oversight and assistance from the mother company. If they're doing well, usually the mother company leaves them alone.
I'll be happy if the niche sites can stay as they are, although I wouldn't mind us have additional tools at our disposal for content creation. Also improving loading speeds on articles would be a huge deal, it makes a big impact in Google ranking.
Brand recognition could really benefit our niche sites too, Hubpages doesn't have the clout that a lot of these established digital publishers do, which could really boost traffic.
Changes are always exciting, (albeit a bit scary at the same time), congrats! Here's hoping that Maven is dog friendly! I see cars, money,politics, food and drinks, but no pets section. A search for the keyword "dog" brings only some news articles. Hopefully it's just a matter of time.
Ownership of content? Do we still have full ownership? That is a very big concern I didn't see addressed here.
I asked that earlier. From what was just said, it appears that ownership will remain as is, but I certainly agree that the team needs to clarify this issue for all of us.
If HubPages dared to sell ownership of our articles, they'd be in for a big law suit. Check the TOS - they don't own the copyright to our articles, so if they tried to sell the copyright, they'd be committing fraud by selling something they don't own!
I very much doubt it would even cross their minds.
Yes, Christin, authors will still own their content.
I hope it all goes better than the way Squidoo left it's writers. Funny how all these posts start out by telling us how excited they are. I hope they really are all excited, in a good way. I hope it will work out for all the HubPages writers too.
It's a good way to start a new year, with a bang.
Squidoo was going bust and HubPages' takeover was a rescue, so it all happened in a bit of a scramble.
Also HubPages never said it was accepting every article on the site, and perhaps that wasn't made clear (which is also a concern for me with this takeover - I understand the desire to put a positive spin on things, but clarity is the most important thing, IMO).
Finally, a large group of writers were late to the party and misunderstood what had happened. The myth circulated that HubPages had "bought their articles without their permission". What had actually happened was that HubPages had transferred their articles so they could stay live and not lose all their links and reputation. If the authors didn't want to stay with HubPages, all they had to do was create a HubPages account, save all their articles to their computer and then delete them from HP.
They couldn't seem to grasp the fact that if HP hadn't transferred their articles to keep them safe, then they would've lost the lot, irretrievably, when the Squidoo servers shut down.
Most of the writers I knew at the time understood that. It was more the feeling of betrayal by Squidoo which caused problems. It was VERY sudden. I still feel a little ripped off because I had just accepted/ been accepted as the Canadian Contributor. A title which only meant something for about 2 months. I was so enthusiastic I paid for artwork, with the Squidoo mascot, to promote my topic. We had a group on Facebook for awhile. Eventually, it stopped being about Squidoo writers and just writers. Anyway, I don't think this is going to be the same, with Maven. But, I should follow my own advice and make sure I have copies of all my posts or the ones I want. A lot of those how-to things I only wrote for here and have no other place to put them.
Squidoo did not 'leave its writers'. They made sure that writers were made aware of the situation and that the best articles were adopted by Hubpages. We all had plenty of time to back up our work. How many other sites closed down without a whimper?
My articles were moved over and I carried on getting paid for them until my neglect caused major traffic failure. I have them all backed up and am slowly revamping them for this account.
Squidoo did leave its writers. Some of the staff tried to help, on their own time/ dime. It was HubPages which picked up the writers and content. If not for HP we would have been left with nothing. Squidoo dropped the bomb the same day they closed the site. The posts were imported by HubPages, quite quickly, considering they had to create software to do all the importing.
You are wrong. We knew for weeks before the switch happened. We were given options, told to save and remove our work if we didn't want it transferred to HP. There was no panic. I had around 130 articles moved, a few were dropped and quite a lot I deleted myself.
You keep saying it, but it wasn't like that at all. We had plenty of notice. I remember clearly. They didn't 'drop the bomb and close the site' at all. There was an announcement in August, and then there was a countdown to get our articles sorted by early Oct, when the site finally closed. We were advised to prepare by backing up and opening a new HP account. I opened that account at least two weeks before the transfer. Then there was a redirect for months afterward, so anyone clicking on a Squidoo link was redirected to the new hub.
I also remember it all. We were told the decision was made. Our content would be moved or we could move it any where we wanted ourselves. It was all done and decided the day they announced it. There was no announcement telling writers they were in talks with HubPages, or thinking to close the site. It was a bomb dropped and writers were left to pick up the pieces. Squidoo staff said they only knew a day before we all did.
Giving writers time to move their content was not so much a kindness as a necessity. HubPages was picking it up, but needed the time to move it. So that time was not courtesy of Squidoo.
Hell, my articles were moved over and they were very bad articles. In fact, I don't think I really wrote for hubpages for a year afterwards. Then I started very slowly.
Cautiously optimistic... Optimistic that this will expand readership and exposure for our article; cautious because the last time a big time company bought a content site like this one, they ran it into the ground and dissolved in six months later. Good thing, I've backed nearly everything I've written.
I see a lot of very short articles on Maven. And some authors are creating blogs under Maven rather than fully-formed articles. I'm starting to wonder now how much due diligence was done my HubPages. Especially since Maven uses a content farm structure.
Their stock shot up 12% earlier today with the announcement, all the way up to $2.57. But then it dropped and closed the day at $1.95 – below the $2.50 valuation offered for the acquisition.
The due diligence would have been done by Maven, not by HubPages. Maven is the one doing the buying. All Paul had to consider was, "how much money could I make if I retain ownership of HubPages"?" versus, "how much money do I stand to make if I sell it?
I have always felt Paul was quite sentimental about HubPages and I'm sure, like all business owners, he's hoping Maven will take care of it. However, business is business.
Due diligence needs to be done by both parties. If Paul only considered how much money he would make for the sale, he wouldn't need to be concerned. However, if he is concerned about how much money he will make going forward as we grow, then he needs to consider how Maven might break a well-tuned engine that Paul and the team already created. I'm sure he's covered that.
I guess it depends on what his remuneration is going to be under the new structure, and whether he's planning to stay for the long term or just stay long enough to shepherd HubPages into the Maven fold.
I can't help being cynical because I've seen this happen so often in the business world. A business is sold, the owner makes an effort to look after his staff and make sure the business will continue as he would like, and it all looks good. But the thing is, once the sale is complete, it's up to the CEO of the new company - and he has no sentimental attachment to the business he's bought. Decisions will start to be made on profitability and nothing else.
Paul must stay for at least the next three years if he wants to take advantage of his full stock payout. I suspect he'll stay longer if things go well because managing HP will be much easier and less stressful than before.
I've just finished re-watching Mad Men. They sold themselves to another company, expecting day to day business to remain the same. It didn't turn out that way. HubPages has done a great job of keeping the company on track so far. I know they can't tell the future any better than the rest of us can, the writers who contribute to HP have no choice but to go along. Let's just all hope for the best.
Pretty easy to see what Maven gains from this. Maven wants pages of content to un ads on. HP has that and now Maven owns the rights to the income from ads on HP. Will see how HubPages changes as things go along. HP might be left alone but for some changes to how ads are run.
Sounds exciting. I'm looking forward to learning more as it progresses. Congrats on the sale.
Smart, experienced, ethical people are running this operation. I'm not overly concerned.
I don't think Paul would risk Hubpages given how hard him and the staff have worked to help it stay afloat, we just had our most profitable 4th quarter with the highest ad revenue yet.
So while I'm a bit nervous about the acquisition, I do trust the staff and that they're doing what they think is best for the platform. These are not novices.
I knew something was cooking when they didn't tell us to enjoy our festive season!
I truly believe this will be better for our community.
- our domains will continue
- we are going to help them with organizing content and domain structure.
- authors own their content
- the team is all joining
- Paul Deeds and I are highly motivated to ensure traffic and earnings improve, and to be part of the organization for years.
We both love HubPages, the community and our team. When others have run from this business, we’ve invested.
Eight new super talented editors start Monday!
The initial shock is wearing off. I think we'll be much calmer going forward.
To whom it may concern. You can believe everything in Paul's post. Why? Because:
"Restricted stock, also known as letter stock or restricted securities, is stock of a company that is not fully transferable (from the stock-issuing company to the person receiving the stock award) until certain conditions (restrictions) have been met."
In other words, the powers that be are indeed highly motivated.
Update: I see that Will Apse beat me to it. Good one.
Or another way of looking at it is that those currently owning HubPages get nothing unless they make this work....
Basically it protects the company acquiring HubPages from finding out down the road that this isn't going to work - after they've already paid for it.
You are right there's a big incentive to make this work - for Paul.
Thanks Paul, I think this is a good move for all too. Google and others of course want to offer the best articles to searchers. If Maven has highly qualified editors, (journalists, award winning authors) and staffers, etc. and Maven backing an article (invitation only) only occurs for high quality content (well written, informative, thought-provoking, etc.) then Google will give content backed by Maven higher rankings. In addition, we will have more editors to help us improve our articles to fit the standards Maven and Google look for. I think the reason others have failed is because they probably didn't invest in the improvement of their writers articles and they may have featured too many articles of low quality. The Hubpages Team has always invested a lot of time into helping their writers improve their articles (not only by editing, but also by informing through articles, threads, etc. every way to go about writing and earning on the site) and it seems having Maven join will give even more help to writers.
If the people at Maven have the future profitability of their business as the top priority, and surely they have, then they'd be crazy to change the highly successful HP niche domain approach. I advise them to keep the status quo and not go for wholesale change for change's sake.
So many excellent writers have collectively driven the ship forward over the years and gained great, deserved rewards. The last few months especially have seen terrific progress earnings-wise. Those at Maven should take these facts on board. I'm sure they will; it'd be madness not to.
At this time, I trust in Paul and the team to guide us safely through.
I like this post, Paul. Very hopeful, clear, makes me feel a little more secure about this huge change. However, it's the change that's hard for me and the anticipation of extra work (there's probably something we're gonna have to do to make the transition like Squidoo writers did) and the adjustment that comes with it.
If the present management are cashing out and leaving us with unknowns, it looks like a slow process, spread over at least three years, as they earn their stock.
KEY COMPONENTS OF THE AGREEMENT (Maven/HP)
An acquisition through a combination of stock, short-term debt and cash.
Stock valued at $2.50/share, for equity grants to HubPages management.
For founders and key personnel, the majority of the payout comes in stock,earned over 36 months, weighed exclusively on the last 24 months.
https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/ … ital-Media
That give gives me confidence for the medium term, since management here have earned some trust.
Aha! Interesting. It sounds like they 're still going to have skin in the game, and that makes a big difference.
The business relationship is hard to understand but presumably, if HP management are acquiring stock in Maven they will have a voice in the organization. If they are taking valuable skills to Maven that will also give them a voice. If they have already worked with Maven, then Maven execs are either master manipulators (unlikely), or have demonstrated that they are decent and capable people.
I reckon it would be wise to give the new structure the benefit of the doubt.
I would like to know if there are any benefits beyond boosting ad yields and unspecified PR stuff.
Also a couple of questions:
What exactly are channels? Are we talking related content from different sites that is interlinked?
Has anyone seen a list of Maven partner sites yet?
"Channels" are sub-folders on the Maven website. Each one is basically a stand-alone website that's been moved on to the Maven site.
https://www.themaven.net/the-maven/mave … WbQIMj8igw
I read it as they only get to acquire stock if they hit previously agreed financial targets within a three year period.
The Maven team looks like they specialize in getting startups to a good place then selling them on to large corporations. We could end working for Rupert Murdoch. Or Disney. lol.
Still, three years is a reasonable timeframe. You don't get much certainty in this world.
I took a look at one of Maven's Landing Pages. I did not like what I saw because it looks like hard news, nothing but bad news, which is also known as fake news, sensationalism, yellow journalism.
With that, I like writing for HubPages because it is nothing like Maven. We know that HubPages is more successful than Maven, so let's keep it as it is. That is a compliment for all HP writers, editors, staff, and Paul.
I am hoping HP stays the same. It's unique and valuable.
My fingers are crossed.
Maven is going to acquire HubPages. Here is the announcement: https://www.themaven.net/the-maven/pres … 6E0c6WYDMQ
I'll start by saying I confess I haven't read all the contributions in detail.
My reading of this is:
1) I'm 100% not surprised - I expected this to happen. It was predictable for all sorts of reasons.
2) Some of us have been here before re what happened to Squidoo after it "joined" HubPages. Like Squidoo it's good to see authors are being given notice so they can decide for themselves whether they are
* EITHER excited by the new prospect (with "promises" which may or may not be delivered)
* OR want to take this opportunity to bow out and move content to their own sites. (Viable really only for those who write on niche topics). It can be a lot of work but also very rewarding.
3) "Joined" in merger parlance means "Takeover". Maven is buying the HubPages platform/team (not the content) and the niche network channels (not the content).
4) My reading of what has been said so far is that the rest of HubPages is tacking along (and I would NOT expect it to survive i.e. "move to a niche or die" is what I would expect the long term strategy/outcome to be). That's based on what happened to a lot of Squidoo Lenses which did not fit the HubPages way of doing things i.e. if your content is not 'fit' to be transferred to a niche network channel you might find it offline/dead in the water.
5) The payment in this instance is being 'paid' in stock (with conditions) to key players. I'm never very sure why stock goes to key players who built the platform when the CONTENT asset base is built by the "little people" - but there you go. I guess the argument is they are selling an advertising platform which can be monetised to an operation which is doing something similar but different - and also wants to sell advertising. (This in a context where everybody wants to sell advertising - but not everybody can!)
6) I can't see anything in the Maven set-up which suggests that they have a platform which pays people in the same way.
7) While the niche sites might have content which transfers - it's unclear whether the remuneration model also transfers and/or will be maintained over time. Name me another website which still has a remuneration model which works in this way - as opposed to paid editors.
8) Maven reminds me somewhat of About.com (now Dot Dash https://www.dotdash.com/ ) - which had paid writers looking after specific channels which were sub-domains of About.com. This seems to resonate with the notion that certain individuals might be "invited" to join Maven somewhere down the line.
9) Remember the Google Mantra - they want original content by expert authors. Looks to me like The Maven is trying to attract expert authors to become part of what it's about. Not sure why they would be interested in people who are not experts who write about a range of topics. Dotdash offers ("invites"?) people to have careers writing for them - see http://jobs.jobvite.com/dotdash/ That's the model I'd expect The Maven to have moving forward - or some variation on the same.
10) Be very clear, what happens in takeovers is that what happens in the future depends entirely on what those who run the show want to happen - not what people promise you will happen. The latter will NOT be in charge or having the last say. In this instance, it looks to me that payback for the buyout only happens over time if and when monetisation targets are reached. Whether that works for the benefit of everybody who has created content for HubPages and the Niche Network Channels is, I would argue, a moot point. Maybe for some and not for others would be my educated guess at this point.
11) I find it no surprise that Paul is employing new editors. My expectation would be that this will be the model for content generation in future. Remember that every time your content gets edited by somebody else it becomes debatable whether it is still your content.
12) My RECOMMENDATION is that everybody PRIORITISE backing up their ORIGINAL content now - especially if your priority is to remain an independent author doing what you want to do. You can decide what you want to do eventually re. the future down the line. Right now your priority is to get a record of your ORIGINAL CONTENT.
Having done this all once before there are two very easy ways of doing this
* if you use Apple, use Safari and "save as" a webpage. It saves the complete hub with live links with everything in place as a webarchive file. Very easy to reference in the future and copy paste if you want to.
* If you use Evernote, save as a full page - and you get everything with format and live links. Very easy.
* PLEASE NOTE some other ways of saving hubs create a folder with all the bits - but NOT as a workable page. NOT RECOMMENDED.
* ALWAYS check whether what you save can be accessed independently of HubPages. i.e. move browsers and open up the file.
* Do save all sites to their own individual folders - it makes life so much easier when you're trying to find them down the line....
the sceptic as usual. Since you are not really on HP anymore, I'm sure you don't believe that they in fact did have their best quarter ever. This is in no way similar to the Squidoo situation. Some of the points you make I do agree with, but not the comparison to squidoo. Squidoo was a sinking ship when HP bought it.
Did I comment on anything to do with "the best quarter"? No I didn't. I commented on the financial remuneration arrangements going forward - and what I predict might well happen.
I'm very happy to offer Kudos to Paul for achieving improvement and getting the deal....
Squidoo was different BUT lots of people were making respectable money on Squidoo - I certainly was. Certainly more at the end of Squidoo than I've ever made at HubPages.
However I agree Squidoo certainly had problems and needed a radical overhaul.
Couple that with the facts i.e.
* a team running it who were patently not up to the job (the prime mover had already left and set up her own website - which has a very different set-up)
* Google had changed and
* Seth Godin had lost interest (and had lots of other very nice income streams thank you very much)
and you have the explanation for why Squidoo finished.
HubPages is very different in terms of carrying on (when everybody else has already bailed out of the content market) because of context - and I'm guessing that's because Paul and his team needed to make it work because of the investment to date.
What I'm saying is that I predict the business model going forward will be different and I don't expect the remuneration arrangements to be stable over time. You may well think differently - that's your freedom and your choice.
However you might want to note that I predicted what would happen to Squidoo and was bang on accurate but was 6 months out on the date when it happened.
So ignore my predictions if you want to......
What I meant with Squidoo was a sinking ship is the fact that they lost their SERP's and had no clue how to recover. Maybe some individual writers were still doing well, but in the broader sense the site was doing really bad compared to "earlier periods", right now that's not the case with HP as they are doing a lot better (on the whole) and most authors are doing better if not all, thanks to the niche sites.
Yes - but a site that has scope to recover is not a sinking ship.
There's a lot of difference between being weighed down by utter tripe and sinking. If they'd just offloaded the tripe they would have still have made money. The problem was that it was the tripe that caused the problem (and the team who were not up to dealing with it) not the good stuff. HubPages had a better team and that's why they've lasted longer before this shakedown.
I had a 100+ lenses in the top 10,000 at the end - I wasn't making what I'd made prior to the first big Google knock but I was doing very nicely thank you. Which is why when moving content elsewhere I am continuing to do very nicely.
That really is the message for people.
If you own your content but not the site then think very carefully as to what you do next. ALL the content sites will go through these shakedown/shakeouts on a periodic basis. You just need to decide whether you want to be part of that sort of business model/prospects - or whether you want to take more ownership of your content and create your own niche channel.
Who knows - one day somebody might come along and offer to buy you out if you do the latter?
I see you edited your response. Not a good thing to do once a reply has been made. Anyway, I choose to ignore such gimmicks.
I, for one, will embrace the change. For the first time in a long time, I feel inspired to create new content.
Depending on how it shapes up, I might even put one of my ‘professional’ hats back on and write different content instead of just limiting myself to the kind of topics I’ve been addressing as LTM. Lol.
Yes, this change has the potential to be a really good one. I’m looking forward to exciting new times.
Acquisitions can be absolutely awesome, or rather... haphazard. I look forward to seeing the changes, and hope for the best.
Also, I'll have to bookmark this forum post, and read through the previous comments in the morning.
What's the best way to back up your content on your desktop when you have a lot of articles.
What's the best way to categorize your folders once articles are saved.
I recommend you save one at a time - and it takes time to do this which is why I recommend starting now...
I know you can do it faster but unless you spend time checking every one then there's no knowing whether they have saved properly
I saved all mine twice - individually and in two different ways (see above post for how)
I have a structured hierarchy of folders for my hubs - starting with the HubPages Archive Folder
- then within that I have BIG TOPIC folders i.e. the content which are going to new niche websites I'm setting up
- then within each of those I have individual folders for each individual hub and its archive files.
Plus I also saved all the stats data and info re Amazon sales - anything which is basically relevant and helpful going forward.
Set up two sets of spreadsheets.
Divide your articles into separate folders and as you copy and paste them onto word processing documents, save them into those folders.
On the other page, simply list your titles under the same titles as the folders, beside this list the number of page views, and next to this the date you wrote the hub.
To copy an article, simply select the entire page, hit copy and then transfer it to a word processing document.
I have always done it this way. Once you capture your articles, you can then do as you please with them if a site you're writing on closes.
I find it a pain copying into Word - because you get all that Word garbage code gets added in when you then copy/paste onwards.
My preference is the Safari web archive file - dead easy to read and copy from
I also love Evernote for archiving because of the ability to tag them so that you can then find them again easily within Evernote - plus I've got them on the web so if my computer fries I still have a copy.
I hope this turns out positively. The last time something like this happened to a community I was part of, it ended up with the website getting shut down entirely. It wasn't a writing site, but it was fun nonetheless.
Congratulations to the HubPages team and best of luck in your new roles!
Happy Saturday morning. Well, I'm going to finish updating my remaining hubs so that they all have the lovely 2018 date. Then I'm going to work on my website, which I will then sell to Maven for a mere quarter-million dollars.
Okay, I'm certainly not an expert when it comes to business acquisitions and I haven't been here as long as some writers but it really seems like everyone is panicking and it's probably the lack of details. I don't think the staff can share all of the details because in a merger like this there are some things that can't be discussed right away or there isn't anything to discuss without imaginations running wild. To me, personally, this doesn't seem like a negative change for us at all. If anything, this will present a lot of opportunity to make MORE money and grow our audience!
Maven may look like it's a new company but I can speculate that within it are people who've been doing this sort of thing for a long time or the company has existed for a while under a different brand. Again, just speculation, but I'm sure these people didn't just pop out of nowhere. Paul isn't stupid. I joined HubPages in 2008 and it was NOT what the company is today. Paul carefully built this company into a success at a time when a lot of startups were failing thanks to the recession.
From what I can see Maven is NOT where our writing is going. The staff has already told us the network sites will remain and that makes the most sense if you look at Maven. Maven.net is like the trunk of a tree. It's not the landing page for readers, it's the hub (lol yeah!) of their company where NETWORK PARTNERS, not readers land. From there, Maven has branches. Go up to the top left of the homepage to "Maven Network" and start clicking through to the sites listed.
I went to KidsActivities. Cool, it's a branch like WeHaveKids is a branch of HubPages. Now let's go to The Resurgent. Nice! It's basically our SoapBoxie! The Maven is NOT a content mill, it's actually a lot like HubPages in it's structure.
Have any of you gone over to Vocal Creators? It's also following the same structure. So does Huffington Post and Buzzfeed and every magazine publisher that's ever existed. There's a main company that is fed by the branches which cater to specific topics. This is obviously a structure that's working right now. For everyone comparing this to Squidoo, I would say that it's the exact opposite. As far as I could see, Squidoo failed to section out their content and to vet it properly.
It would not help HubPages or Maven to "get rid" of any of us! WE ARE THE ONES THAT MAKE THEM MONEY. Without our content, advertisers would have no reason to spill money into these companies for advertising which is where the money comes from. So to be afraid we won't be a part of this means we're not taking the time to think this through.
The smartest thing any of us can do right now is to continue creating great content and submit it to the network sites which probably won't go anywhere since that's what Maven wants. Let's face it, HubPages as a brand doesn't exist. When people ask me how I'm able to stay home with my kids and still make money I tell them I write for the HubPages network and they have no idea what I'm talking about, yet many of them have told me they've accidentally stumbled onto my articles Googling particular topics. This is to say that worrying about the network sites going anywhere doesn't make a lot of sense because these sites are successful!
Last, and I'm sure this is rambly because I didn't get a lot of sleep with sick kids - WHY WOULD MAVEN WANT HUBPAGES AND WHY WOULD HUBPAGES TURN OVER TO ANOTHER COMPANY??
I don't know for certain but my loose knowledge of business says that we can assume that HubPages is working! They've created a formula that works and Maven sees that and wants to skim off that revenue. Maven is probably a larger company and has the tools to monetize HubPages content to earn themselves and the writers much more money. Paul and the team have done a great job but with a team that small there's only so far they can take HubPages now and we're probably due to hit a plateau if we just sit pretty with the status quo. Selling made financial sense for Paul and the team AND for us because it puts more technology and more knowledge and experience into this mix and it makes financial sense for Maven because they just acquired an established network of sites that makes good money AND ALREADY HAS A BASE OF WRITERS (that's us!) so while they'll most certainly grow our network they don't have to seek out writers in the process. See? It makes no financial sense to off any of us.
As for the content that doesn't perform as well, HubPages has been burying that for years. It gets published but it gets buried so it won't negatively affect network site rankings in the search engines. For those writers, this acquisition won't make much of a difference at all since they weren't earning traffic or income here in the first place.
I hope we can all see the good in this and just continue to write through any anxiety. Even though we're all independent of each other, I think that in a lot of ways we ARE a team and we shouldn't all just get scared and go south just because this situation presents a lot of unknowns, because that would just sink the whole ship for all of us. I think we need to take a few deep breaths and remember that HubPages is a business and we're not just writers, we're essentially part of a business and what just happened is business as usual. Had we never been told that there was an acquisition I wonder how much of a change most of us would even notice over the next year.
A well thought-out and level-headed analysis, Kierstin. Of course no one can predict the future, but there's no reason to assume that the HubPages and Maven teams haven't done their best due diligence before committing to this change.
If you notice, every time there is a change to the site, some people start to panic. I think they did it when we changed to niche sites too. It's become comically predictable and at some point the panic turns to convoluted "logic" and then you have these long thread of endless speculation and incorrect conclusions.
There are reasons people panic. You don't have to look back very far to remember major changes that ended up being very bad for HubPages. I was doing really really well before the Squid merger. Then one decision changed everything.
Now this. We are in the midst of a very successful time in HP history, where it seemed like it was all finally worth it. Suddenly, another change. It's maddening.
I hope this works out as well as it seems like it could and I am trying to be optimistic. But surely it's not hard to see why those of us who have been around here a long time are a little nervous about it all.
I was pleased to discover that the site includes a section on crafting called craftgossip.com and this includes felting. I find this slightly reassuring.
Interesting Sally. craftgossip.com is a stand alone site. Not like many of the others I've checked that redirect back to themaven.net as a subdirectory. I hope that means they are in the process of adopting the way HubPages does it with our niche sites.
They'd be silly not to given how successful the niche sites have been. Of course I'm not going to assume they will but as a business I'm pretty sure Maven wants to be successful in its own right.
If they have such a large collection of people from companies like Google and Amazon, then I would hope they'd be really tech savvy.
If you look at the Maven Network page, you'll see Craftgossip is listed as a "coming soon". That means that currently, it's still a standalone website which hasn't been migrated into the network yet.
In this situation both businesses will present the change in the best light, making use of propaganda at times. I've been with sites merged, bought out, acquired many times since 1998 when I was writing for HerPlanet (no longer exists). I've written for Suite101(all but gone), BackWash (gone), Wz.com (gone), Squidoo (gone), a site with a name like Twilly (gone), LockerGnome (sort of gone), BellaOnline (still online), LifeTips (might still be online) and others I don't remember any more. You just have to wait and see, but make sure you have copies of any and all content you want to keep. You might even make screen captures of your profile and badges.
For now Maven wants to look attractive to HubPages writers. HubPages wants to keep writers and their posts for Maven. If the site doesn't close that will be one good thing. Most I have been with were bought and then abandoned. I never understood how that worked for them, could only have been short term benefits. But, "content farms" were new as a business model, domain selling and spamming was easy (years ago).
Darn! Just when I started to make money on this site, they up and sell it. Coming from a finance background, I know that mergers do not benefit all employees. A large percentage are usually laid off as the buyer "cleans house". In this case, I imagine HP/Maven will only keep the best hubs and hubbers. Backup all of your hubs and look into transitioning to your own site. Not all of us will survive this takeover.
I too come from a finance background - and what you describe/speculate about is entirely typical of most acquisitions.
I can't think of a good reason why this should be any different.
As I've written elsewhere "blind optimisim" is not a good perspective. Some people will do very well out of this - emphasis on the "some".
Currently, HP has bots choosing which posts are shown on the site and which are hidden. So there is no real need for them to let go of any writers on the site. They can all stay, unless they spam or create some other problem.
Some people will do very well, of course. Those who already have popularity will have even more popularity and money. Most people will be somewhere in the middle, if they stick around and keep posting.
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