I should start by saying that most of the newer members won't know me, and that's fine. I've not been as involved with this community in the past few months. But I'm Sophie and I'm the original founder of this forum. I've poured hundreds of hours of effort since early 2015 making this community the safest and best DD/lg community. Eventually I had to take a break because things were getting too much, but like most of you, this site still means a lot to me.
I remember how when we first started, I would sometimes be the only person in the chat, and I'd get so excited when a new member came in. It felt so good providing people with a safe space to express themselves without fear of judgement or being shamed. Slowly we accumulated members and the site grew more established, we started adding moderators and a staff team formed that did really amazing volunteer work. I really can't express how grateful I am for the work these moderators have done.
However, communities are made up of lots of different mindsets and ways of thinking. It started to happen that a noticeable minority of the users were attempting to take the forum in a different direction, a direction that didn't match with how I envisioned the forum when I created it. Communities thrive when you let people express themselves, but it came to be that so many rules and guidelines were being added that some people felt like they were walking on egg shells using this forum. This doesn't mean that the moderators that added these rules love the site any less, but the site was founded with a clear goal in mind, and it was clear the team had deep disagreements about the site's future and how decisions are to be made.
This site's aim was always to be a DD/lg community with very well defined but limited rules, and with strong focus on user safety enforced through technical features whenever possible. This is why the forum doesn't let you PM any user unless they approve you first. This is why I had to personally overrule the moderators and remove rules like "Cheaters will be banned"; because I felt this forum has no business getting involved and passing judgement on the personal lives of it's members. Rules like this kept being added that served no purpose and made users feel like they weren't dealing with "forum moderators", but instead they were interacting with a "DDlg moral police" who "protect" you because they "know best".
Me and Michael are going to start working to bring this forum back in line with it's intended goal. We understand that there will be people that disagree with our decisions, and that's fine, this is an internet forum and you can either stick around and adapt to the change, or you can choose to leave. But we're not got to tolerate people trying to spread division and hate. Lots of members love and cherish this lovely site and we ask that you don't try to drag them into drama. If you don't like it here, you can start another forum that best fits with your philosophy, and that's fine, do your thing and we'll do ours. Both communities will meet different needs, I'm sure.
I just want to tell all the members that left or moved on: I love you all so much and you will always be welcome here if you choose to come back. Each and every one of you made this site a special place, and I thank you for everything you've contributed to the site.