Six weeks ago, GuildPortal, the community site for guilds of over 100 supported games, went offline due to a domain registration issue. This followed a multi-day outage this summer that remains unexplained. However these outages were eventually remedied and we assumed the site would resume operations for the foreseeable future. Yet last night, a terse notice was added to the top of GuildPortal:
NOTICE: GuildPortal will be going offline (permanently) by the end of the month.
We can only speculate on the reasons for the site’s imminent closure. After 14 years, maintaining the site may no longer bring any enjoyment to owner Aaron Lewis. The site’s revenue through premium subscriptions ($90/yr per guild) may no longer justify continued development. The site removed advertisements for free guilds in 2005 so only premium guilds support the site.
What’s puzzling is the near radio silence about the outages this summer and again in September, and the fact that Mr. Lewis doesn’t seem to be seeking a buyer for the site. Tens of thousands of guilds are hosted on Guild portal type sites. As a self-confessed packrat, the idea of losing all that information is horrifying. I’m not familiar with the Ventrilo voice chat hosting also provided by GuildPortal but perhaps this is what has proven too technically difficult to keep going. Again we can only speculate as nobody from GuildPortal is talking about what’s led them to the cliff’s edge.
Where Do We Go From Here?
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