Metabunk is Three Years Old

Mick West

Staff member
The third year of Metabunk has been one of continued rapid growth. The second year more than doubled over the first year, and the third year (2013) has more than doubled over that. Here are the numbers:

2011: Threads 361 Posts: 3,264, Active Members 67
2012: Threads: 833, Posts: 21,700, Active Members: 141
2013: Threads: 2,214, Posts: 78,219, Active Members: 216

The year was one of changes, the most visible being the change in forum software from Vbulletin to Xenforo, which worked out very well. Xenforo is faster and easier to use, and made it easier for people to do things like upload images.

But the biggest change was simply the increase in the number of posts, and the amount of visitors. The sheer volume of traffic made Metabunk transition from a small personal site where I would read, and often respond to, ever single post, to a site where there were simply too many posts to keep track of:

Site traffic has also greatly increased, with just a trickle in 2011 as we were getting started, to a few hundred per day in 2012, to now several thousand unique visitors per day, totaling over a million unique individuals visiting in 2013.

The large amount of visitors brought larger amounts of new members registering to post. This brought new challenges. Metabunk is intended to be a place where people can discuss bunk, discuss how to debunk bunk, and concisely and politely debunk it. It's not a place for spreading bunk. It's a place to focus on specific claims of evidence.

Unfortunately new members do not always get this message, and they often want to simply discuss broader theories - like "are there secret societies leaving clues all around", or "was Sandy Hook a hoax". New people are also perhaps not quite as polite as they could be, being more used to more opinionated forums, some perhaps having honed their debating techniques in the comment sections of Youtube or Facebook. Not that there's anything wrong with that - it's just not what Metabunk is about.

So the year brought revisions and clarifications to the long standing Politeness Policy, and the creation of a detailed set of Posting Guidelines. These have proven quite troublesome at times, with enforcement necessitating making decision in a grey area that was sure to please nobody some of the time. However I feel they have worked well overall in setting the tone and direction of Metabunk. Polite. Honest. Fact based. Focussed.

Looking forward, I anticipate continued growth, and continued focus. I want to continue to differentiate Metabunk from other discussion forums by keeping up the aforementioned tone. Other forums have much higher numbers of users, threads, and posts - however Metabunk has relatively higher traffic, and I feel this is in part due to the focus on quality over quantity, and on making debunks concise and easy to find. The measure of growth should not be the number of people chatting on the site, but the number of useful debunks, and the number of people those debunks reach.,

My goal for Metabunk for 2014 is for it to become the #1 skeptic and debunker discussion forum in the world in terms of visitors, and to continue to provide polite, useful, and concise debunks to the vast forest of bunk out there. It's important to maintain quality over quantity, so while I expect the visitor count to greatly increase, this does not necessarily mean a corresponding increase in members and posts. Posting guidelines and the politeness policy will continue to be enforced, perhaps even more so.

I also want to continue to improve the technology available at Metabunk, using my experience a programmer. Text and images are fine, but there is only so much you can do with them, and images are not easy for most people to create. Forums are great, but I feel there are many improvements that can be made - particularly in the areas of interactive content, and quickly being able to discover related content.

Happy New Year!

(See also: )

George B

Extinct but not forgotten Staff Member
Well done Mick . . . what you have done is not easy . . . best wishes for the New Year!!!;)


Senior Member.
Congrats, Mick! Wow, so I found this almost right at the beginning! Cool! How old is the site?


Senior Member.
ContrailScience was started six and a half years ago, in May 2007 - with what I thought would be the only post needed

ha! So much for were young and naive :)

Seriously, congrats and thanks...I have learned a lot participating here- not only about "stuff" but about people- including myself.
Thread starter Related Articles Forum Replies Date
SkepticSteve Advanced Knowledge Management Systems for Metabunk? Site Feedback & News 33
Mick West How to Delete Your Account and Data on Metabunk How To 0
Mick West Metabunk 2.0 Site Feedback & News 34
A How to use the refraction approximation in the metabunk curve calculator Flat Earth 0
Mick West Tales From the Rabbit Hole - A Mick West / Metabunk Podcast Tales From the Rabbit Hole Podcast 20
Mick West I'm displaying ads for ETRH on Metabunk Site Feedback & News 8
ConfusedHominid Need Debunking (Claim): Metabunk Curve Calculator Does Not Calculate for Angular Size Flat Earth 13
Mick West Metabunk Flat Earth Route Simulator Tools for Investigating and Debunking 17
Inti Presenting the good stuff in Metabunk and Contrail Science in a different way? Practical Debunking 6
MikeC Metabunk linked from article on "Truthers" Sandy Hook 2
Mick West Metabunk is Five Years Old Site Feedback & News 15
Libertarian Monetizing Metabunk? Site Feedback & News 22
Mick West The Linode/Metabunk Power Outage Site Feedback & News 5
Critical Thinker How to search for an image on Metabunk (and other websites) How To 9
Mick West Metabunk is Four Years Old Site Feedback & News 16
Sine metu Metabunk is my new rabbit hole Escaping The Rabbit Hole 12
MikeC Has Trolling Increased, here on Metabunk? Site Feedback & News 11
Clock The members of Metabunk are a "Disinformation Group" General Discussion 18
Mick West How to Post an Image on Metabunk How To 5
Mick West About Metabunk Site Feedback & News 0
Mick West Metabunk facebook page Site Feedback & News 6
Mick West Do you want to be a moderator on Metabunk? Site Feedback & News 26
Clock List of 9/11 threads on Metabunk General Discussion 0
Mick West Metabunk is now on ForumRunner for iPhone, iPad and Android Site Feedback & News 0
Mick West Is Metabunk slow for you Site Feedback & News 8
Mick West Contrail Science and Metabunk on the Critical Wit Podcast General Discussion 0
Mick West Sphere, Acorn, Metallic Blimp - Three iPhone Photos From an F-18 via Mystery Wire UFO Videos and Reports from the US Navy 170
Mick West Three Contrails "Descending" over Denver on Jan 31, 2021 [Military, C-17A Globemasters] Skydentify - What is that Thing in the Sky? 1
Mick West Hoax? Three Fingered Nazca Mummy Ghosts, Monsters, and the Paranormal 19
Trailspotter Where did the third trail go? Skydentify - What is that Thing in the Sky? 5
MikeG Claim: Three Acre Urban Farm Produces Million Pounds of Food in a Year General Discussion 9
Marin B Three Planes Turn Right, South of San Francisco Skydentify - What is that Thing in the Sky? 15
J What might these three planes be? Skydentify - What is that Thing in the Sky? 9
KC-10FE Identified: Wing with Three Gold Nozzles [D-ADLR Gulfstream G550 - German Research Plane ] Skydentify - What is that Thing in the Sky? 6
Mick West Three U-Shaped Contrails in Serbia Skydentify - What is that Thing in the Sky? 8
Steve Funk Three "Chemtrail Scientists" murdered Contrails and Chemtrails 6
Mick West Boston: Three more detained Boston Marathon Bombings 8
HappyMonday Attribution of Schopenhauer's Three Stages of Truth Quotes Debunked 8
S Claim: "Most U.S. terror deaths have come from 'extreme right wing groups' in recent years" General Discussion 14
Mick West Discovery Channel's "Contact: Declassified Breakthrough" was debunked 2.5 years ago UFOs and Aliens 8
Justatruthseeker Debunked: Telescope Distances of Billions of Light Years are impossible Science and Pseudoscience 84
Jay Reynolds Chemtrail Believers' predictions of "years left" before disaster Contrails and Chemtrails 6
MikeC 95,000 kids, 20 years of science - no connection between Autism and MMR Health and Quackery 1
Mick West Debunking "Contrails don't Persist" with a Study of 70 Years of Books on Clouds Contrails and Chemtrails 98
AluminumTheory JFK - 50 Years Later Conspiracy Theories 73
Titus Dafoe General Wesley Clark: Wars Were Planned - Seven Countries In Five Years Conspiracy Theories 61
Mick West CNN: Still 'paranoid' after all these years Conspiracy Theories 7
Jay Reynolds 14 Years of Chemtrails, Comments and Suggestions Contrails and Chemtrails 205
Related Articles

Related Articles