Having started this thread, I've been following it closely. Here are a few thoughts:
First off, any reports of OHW's death are, well, more than a little bit premature.
Our site traffic always drops a bit between Thanksgiving and the day following Christmas and this year has been no exception.
On the other hand, our traffic has been more than twice as high during this year's holiday season as it was during last year's. And I'm happy to report that use of the site has more than doubled this year, which is pretty cool. Last month - our best ever - we reached an average of more than 15,000 people a day.
Second, for what it's worth, OHW's bulletin boards are near and dear to my heart.
One of my goals when I launched Old House Web five years ago this month was to create the framework for a community where old-house lovers could swap technical questions and answers, thereby creating - over time - a repository of old-house information. My other (equally important) goal was to provide a place where people could connect with others who share their passion for old houses.
I think our old boards succeeded in creating that friendly gathering place.
Alas, I don't think they were terribly successful as a repository of old-house information. They were difficult to search ... and they were becoming mighty slow under the weight of many thousands of messages from the past several years.
So, here's what I am considering doing at this point.
1) I'd like to leave in place our new board software. It gives us the framework to build an easy-to-search repository of solid old-house info. Anything any of us might do to our old houses has already been perfected by someone else. Wouldn't it be cool if we could get that stuff out of our heads and into a place where our collective knowledge could be shared by others?
2) Over the holidays, I'd like to launch a couple of updated forums using our older look-and-feel. My goal would be to continue to provide that friendly, lively gathering spot.
Feedback, as always, is encouraged.