After nearly thirteen years of operation since its inception in summer of 2006, Abaissé will be closing in a matter of weeks.
I had said, for many years, that as long as people needed a meeting place to chat and find other Les Mis fans, Abaissé would be here. And I am pleased to say that purpose has been fulfilled many times and many years over. I had suffered the loss of an old forum (café frenchboys for any other fandom geezers old enough to remember) and hated the thought of fans milling separately on their own without a central meeting place.
But the internet has evolved in the past dozen years to where forums are as old-fashioned as Myspace or Napster. We have twitter, tumblr, snapchat, and various other forms of social media that makes it easier than ever to connect and find people -- and we have Discord.
My personal opinion is that Discord is one of the most amazing social media we have available today, as it combines the social chat aspect of old forums with voice chat. It's entirely free, it works great on smartphones and pcs alike, and you don't even have to install an app on your pc because you can use it on a website also! Most of the Discord servers I am part of have both multiple voice channels as well as multiple text chat channels, dedicated to different topics of discussion, and this is what I would reincarnate Abaissé into -- if it were not already done!
Our own deHavilland has a Discord channel, which I am in and which does have some discussion in it, and I'm sure it wouldn't be a terrible place for other people to join in
Part of the reason for me to close Abaissé was the many many hours I've spent MacGuyvering anti-bot measures onto this site just so my web host would not take down Abaissé forever. This is just not something you have to worry about on a Discord server or on tumblr/twitter/facebook groups, etc. The other part of the reason is that I've been basically paying $126 a year to run a decrepit and badly-aging forum that less than 3 dozen people regularly visit. That $126 is just not money I really want to part with anymore; but apart from that, I don't really want to be responsible for spending entire weekends banhammering Chinese bots by the IP anymore.
Unfortunately it will not be possible to transfer the site itself to another person or site. The amount and kind of work I've done on Abaissé just precludes any real exporting of files to be re-used on another domain -- I went through the hell of exporting Abaissé once when I set it up on the-barricade and that is not something that I could reasonably expect to work again. So -- and this is the important bit -- if there are any discussions or memes or links or pictures or fic or ANYTHING currently on Abaissé that you want to save for posterity or your own use, please save it NOW.
I'm not exactly certain when the site will die -- my host says after 60 days of nonpayment they can no longer guarantee site uptime, though whether that means the site instantly disappears on the 60th day I can't say. I will likely choose to just manually close the site, and an advance notice will be posted once I make that decision. If I chose to pay for another year the due date is April 25. I expect the site will disappear on its own in June if I just stopped paying; but I think I will likely just cancel manually and delete everything sometime in May, with another notice posted for the last day.
The domain the-barricade.net will also become available in time, at the end of this process. However, because I get the domain registration free as part of the site service I pay for I am not sure if it would be transferable to someone else. I will look into it, if anyone is interested in it.
I have thoroughly enjoyed most of my years running this site and have met through it a great number of awesome people. I have gone back and reread some of the topics with a grin on my face, just savouring the nostalgia of when these topics were in their heyday. I will miss it, but in truth, Abaissé's peak is long gone, and so it is time.
If anyone has any questions feel free to ask them.