I'm pulling 2013 kind of randomly, but I really miss how HubPages used to be. It used to be a really friendly place. We used to have kind of an "in" with the administration in that Maddie and Simone would give us advice. There used to be contests to motivate us to write.
I understand that HubPages is a company, with a bottom line as many companies have, but I no longer find it either profitable nor enjoyable to write here. The only time I hear from someone is when I get an edit to a hub. A few edits have harmed traffic to my articles and some have been great. One edit tanked my highest earning article and i just can't get that traffic back. A few of my hubs that are decently popular on hubpages(dot)com don't get moved to the other sites no matter what I do to them. Some of my hubs are on sites where they don't really belong and I admittedly have a few that have always been poor performers that are on some of those sites and still don't perform.
It's just disheartening and I'm disappointed. I just keep hoping I'll enjoy it again.
I miss HubPages as it was. Simone was wonderful and so too were the competitions where winners in each category won real money instead of just recognition. Some transparency about how earnings via google are now being allocated would be nice. I have not written anything for ages, mainly because of other commitments but hope to do so again very soon.
I agree, having to use the less than stellar ad reporting doesn't give me much urge to do anything here any longer. I don't like having to trust the powers-that-be to figure my ad earnings, especially with no number of clicks listed in the reports. It was good while it lasted though....
I for one DO miss the old HubPages a LOT.
I loved the various photo sizes like we could use a small photo to the right to make our point besides using the center huge photo.
All I can say is . . . .ahhhh, good times.
I also miss the background photos on our profiles, they were a fun way to add a distinguishing flair.
The side photos were fun, but I understand the reasoning for removing them (they don't look great on mobile devices).
Ah...them golden times...I knew nothing of online writing before I came to HP and I have to say I 'owe' them in the sense that they allowed me to earn from writing about my passion - poetry analysis! - quite a niche subject if ever there was one. Despite the changes and transitions they've kept it all together as far as I can see, and kept us informed of any major issues. Simone leaving was a blow cos she was so involved and super friendly and sensible and creative but she was always a realist.Recall the niche site transition time when lots thought HP was doomed? We came through because once the initial uncertainty had eased people could begin to reap the benefits. And then came the Maven...bigger fish and all that.
Individual choice remains just that. I understand your concerns. The online world is a beast, what with algorithms, adblockers, plagiarism etc etc but there are still friendly and helpful folk here. Whnever I've emailed the team I always get a reply, prompt and to the point. That's my experience. HP isn't perfect but it does give all kinds of writers the opportunity to get their words published and out there. That fundamental hasn't changed.
My traffic is still good, I'm writing new material despite the drop in earnings, which I see as part and parcel of playing the online game. Editors have done a decent job with several of my articles - as a writer I have worked with loads of editors in the past - it's give and take - getting a balance - seeing them as a help not a hindrance - a mutually positive relationship: they need me more than I need them though!! And I am still free to do what I want with my work. It's mine. I hope you can enjoy HP again.Perhaps take a step back, recharge/rethink...you might see things differently?
It's funny I do miss those days, but I don't think it's because of the site. I was very motivated to write back then and I put a tremendous amount of work into articles. But, life being what it is, I had to make a living and writing just wasn't cutting it. My time and energy mostly goes to going to a job and working. I spend very little time on HP comparatively. It's too bad because I used to enjoy everything about the site at one time.
The Apprentice Program was excellent. I was so lucky to get on it.
I miss the old days. So many of the great characters have gone and the forums are a shadow of what they used to be. It is also so much harder to get decent traffic to a new hub and every time I make a resolution to write more my traffic tanks! But I suppose everyone gets nostalgic for the good old days ... sigh
Oh, I miss the "old" HubPages, too, melbel. There was a lot of energy and excitement. I got here at the height of it in the late summer of 2012. Hubbers were real characters back then. Some would actually take you under their wings. Simone floated through multiple forums daily and simultaneously and helped everybody! She would break up forum spats, too. Those were the days. But times change, nothing stays the same.
I can relate to a lot of what you've said. Hanging in there with you and with HP for the time being.
Jan, you are so right. I have to confess that we did not have to write as much material or more frequently to reach a pay-out as we do now. I am with in 6 dollars and now I check and even with my NEW hubs, I am going being paid cents pay. I am too old for this.
Yes those were some good days. I remember when HP started, and I work directly with Paul at the time. It's interesting how the Internet has changed and affected everything. And it's hard to really stay on top of the changes because they happen so fast now.
I still love the community here and many people consider real friends. I do miss a lot of the features that have been dropped over time. Like the ability to share hubs that you liked and to vote up hubs. Paid competitions is another, and as Kenneth said the ability to have smaller right positioned photos.
YESSSS! Jodah, thanks for agreeing with me.
I believe the photo policy was altered because most people surf using their cell phones nowadays, and pics don't show up well if they don't cover the full width of page. So it had to be done really.
I still love the community here and many people consider real friends. I do miss a lot of the features that have been dropped over time. Like the ability to share hubs that you liked and to vote up hubs. Paid competitions is another, and as Kenneth said the ability to have smaller right positioned photos. But there have been a lot of positive changes too like the niche sites.
Melanie, I see you have deleted almost all of your articles. Are you going to start a blog or have you found another site to join?
If you do not want to answer I understand. Just curious, as I am sure many are.
I have started a website for some of my content. I’m going to repurpose some of it for my YouTube channel. My channel is far larger than my following/traffic here.
As for the rest of the content, I’m looking for something similar to HubPages. Buzzfeed was a hard pass. I intend to post something on Huffington Post. I’m going to diversify, I guess you could say.
The times, they are achangin', but there is still a spark of good in Ringo.
I’m really disappointed that I’ve spent so much time on an article and it was declined for a niche site because there is already “stuff like it” on the Internet or on the niche site.
A while back, I wrote a really in-depth article on something else and it was declined because someone already had an identical topic on the niche site. Didn’t matter if mine was better. I ended up putting it on a separate site and it’s outranking the one here. Sucks, though. I really enjoyed this platform.
There is an article on one of the niche sites on a science topic and it’s factually incorrect and it’s still up there. I even submitted suggested edits for correctness to an editor, but they didn’t care.
I link a lot of my articles to your "How to find an ethical breeder" article because it is factually correct. Even in Pethelpful, where we have an editor that is aware of issues about pets, there are a lot of factually incorrect articles. (That is one reason I suggested I would gladly volunteer to go through and remove about 25 of them.)
I imagine it must be even a lot worse on many of the other niche sites.
It's easy to get over-nostalgic about the old times, there were plenty of disastrous traffic falls when the forums got very angry and ugly, and when I first joined (2011?) there were a lot of spammy and scammy hubbers recommending all sorts of dirty tricks, it was really a Wild West free-for-all. Google forced HP to be more like a traditional publisher with enforced editorial standards, which was both good and bad.
All that said, I do share great sympathy for a few things.
1. I do share the frustration with not being able to get certain stuff moved to the niche sites. I thought I'd sussed it all out as I got 95% of my submissions accepted until recently. Then I spent a number of months wasting a lot of time working on articles that don't seem much different to stuff that's already on the niches, in terms of style and quality, but got rejected nonetheless. I suspect that they were/are looking for certain sorts of article, and don't want others, but there's no real guidance on that front. I speak as someone who regularly has (or had) articles on front pages of niche sites, so I have obviously come up with the goods at times in the past(!) It's terribly off-putting when you feel like you've wasted large amounts of time, so right now I am just editing and not doing any creation of new material (which is more like work than fun, but necessary). It's ironic, as a few years back HP was literally paying writers to produce as much material as possible. Now the advice is only spend 20% of time creating and the vast majority of effort on editing(!)
2. The site did feel more like a "family" up until recently. It does feel like there's more distance between writers and staff nowadays. I liked it when Paul E contributed to forums and Simone was obviously a star.
3. The work by HP editors is generally very good and the majority have a very professional approach, but I too have had a few dreadful experiences. Factually incorrect, contradictory, or plain wrong info being inserted. Normally this is spotted by readers and commented on. I can take it when I make a mistake and it's pointed out, but there is something awful about stuff appearing in your name that is wrong. Like I say, the editing is generally great, but when it's wrong, it can be very wrong.
As I mentioned, I think it's important not to get too starry-eyed as there is some crap that doesn't happen nowadays. The quality of the writing on here is way better across the board, for example. I am also waiting to see what developments the Maven thing brings. I'd still say I was optimistic, but in practice I'm spending more time on other projects and waiting to see what happens.
Granted I wasn't working here in 2013, but ever since I did start there have been a lot of changes. Most of them for the better. Paul, as you mentioned, the quality of work across the board has changed dramatically, which is great. but I'm sorry to hear about your frustration with rejections. Have you emailed the team for reasoning/suggestions? Of course we want to publish as many articles as possible!
That being said, I have also noticed some changes that probably made a significant impact on the authors who were used to a certain way of doing things. Even so, I'm really optimistic about the future of Hub/Maven. All of those changes were made with the intention of making things better. We've got some stellar people on staff that have a million and one ideas to make the site better. Only time will tell!
I emailed staff asking why my latest article was rejected. It was more discouraging than anything. I used to have things approved all the time and it does great. On the other hand, some of my older stuff that got accepted without me submitting it definitely does not belong on a niche site (it needs severe editing or is just so outdated.)
I felt like the email I got the other day was along the lines of "it was crappy," worded in a nice way, but yet had a tone of "no matter what you do to the article, we're not accepting it." It was still really vague and felt like a copy/paste more than anything.
It ranks decently even as it's on HubPages and it's on a high-search keyword.
I've had articles (one on clouds and the other on plumbing) that were extremely high traffic and high earners that were edited and now receive a handful of views per day. It's disheartening.
There is no voice in the forums, no community manager, nothing really. Just vague emails with a "we don't want this sh*t" tone.
Hi melbel, I am the community manager. I do not manage the team inbox, but we do communicate across the team. I try to reply to as many threads as possible, but for direct questions, the team inbox is the best place to go.
Rejection is a factor to consider when submitting to any online publication. That being said, I understand your frustration. Of course, you are free to do as you please with your content, but just know that it is not our intention to make people feel so disheartened, and we encourage authors to continue working with us to develop their content according to our Network Site standards and submission requirements. We hope that you will stay open to collaborating with us and understand that you have fellow authors here to support you. We appreciate your presence in the community.
Perhaps my problem is that I'm not fully sure what the site is anymore. When I joined it was an open platform, anybody could write, get published, and often appear fairly high in the search rankings. Nowadays, it's more like a traditional publisher with strict rules, editors, and rejection letters. Those changes have made the site "better" in the sense that it has kept going and moving forward when it would very likely have disappeared without them (as happened with pretty much all its direct rivals), but the changes have also altered what HP is. I feel sometimes HP has talked as if it is the radical open platform that it started out as, but clearly it's evolved into something quite distinct from the early vision. The Maven thing just adds to the sense of not quite knowing what HP is. I understand why the changes happened and see them as necessary, after all the views and revenue *have* to be the bottom line in a business such as this, but I do think that there are currently problems with site identity . Whether you call it an "existential" or a "branding" issue, I suspect that I am not the only writer here who isn't quite sure what HP is nowadays, never mind knowing where it's headed. Hopefully, all will become clear and it will be a happy and prosperous time for all.
They were "Happy Days"...Although 2013 is when I phased out of Hubpages. I miss the old banter on the Forums of 2009 and up to 2013. That is really far on the "Way-Back" Machine. There have always been many changes ongoing here at Hubpages. That can be hard since there is really nothing quite like it for someone to post their stuff. "Hi" to All "Hubbers" that are left from those days and "Hi' to everyone!
Hey, Randy Godwin...Good to hear from you too!. I am well and hope that you are also. Did I miss anything while I was gone....Ha!
One thing that I do not miss is the instability of views and earnings that plagued the site up until a few years ago. It was probably at its worst after the introduction of subdomains (an idea later abandoned). You would look at your stats one day and there'd be double red arrows as your views rocketed. A couple of days later, it would be double blue arrows as your views dropped like a stone.
The relatively stability of the last few years has been a big improvement. The cleaning up of the site along with the introduction of Hub Ads were leaps forward. It's just disappointing that there has been a downward movement in views and earnings in recent times, at least for me.
And yes, there were some great characters in the forums that I miss. But there were also a fair share of assh*les, crazies, and scammers who moved on or got banned. It kind of balanced out. The site and forums feel like they've lost a little energy, but the relative calmness isn't entirely bad.
I've ultimately decided to take down a bulk of my articles and work toward building a website for them and earning from AdSense. This way I have more clarity in where revenue is coming from (ad statistics) and can potentially earn more.
I think HubPages is a great place to get started in writing, but isn't really the place to be if you're in it for the long haul.
by Dina Sostarec 18 months ago
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