This is a quick update to let you know that the forums on E-Democracy are experiencing an extended outage.
While OnlineGroups.Net has restore our website, posting via email or the web has yet to be restored.
The best we can say is that OnlineGroups.Net is working on it. We have no estimate on when service will be restored other than hoping it was yesterday. We apologize for the inconvenience.
On a related note, the Board for E-Democracy.org recently commissioned me to review our future forum hosting options. Before this outage, we knew it was time to explore what was next.
As perhaps the last non-profit in the world hosting local community online groups on an open source platform, we have an opportunity to experiment and do this differently than services filled with ads. Or, frankly, it is time to just go with the flow and “just use Facebook.” Let’s figure that out.
As our forums are 100% volunteer based and our tech costs are covered by your vital donations, E-Democracy has a wee bit of savings to explore our options and transition if needed.
From sticking with the current GroupServer platform, to moving to Facebook Groups or Google Groups, to exploring other open source platforms like Discourse, MailMan 3, or some new platform you recommend, we will be in consultation with you, our participants.
Vitally, if you have software development skills or online hosting capacity you can donate in-kind and you want to help us explore our options, please get in touch ASAP. Certain options will only be viable with your help.
We started E-Democracy with all volunteers way in 1994 and we cherish what we can do differently to serve our communities with better participation and a more engaged democracy. With the right kind of sustained volunteer commitment, we can code our democratic DNA into what we use next or improve the current platform we use to keep this a vital independent service for the communities we serve.
P.S. If you would like to make a major donation to expand our options for future hosting, please donate here. Thanks.