Monthly Update May 2016

There are a couple of bits of news I want to pass along.

  • The update of the site – Mid April, I asked the coders to stop work on the update. There were a couple of reasons. First and foremost, the estimate was once again increasing and was way beyond what was budgeted for this attempt. URNA is a complex site with most of the code not readily apparent. Just think on all the links built in to your profiles, thumbnails, etc. Almost 99% of this is auto generated by the site. The most manual thing about the site is photo approval and that is by design. Also, since the first of the year, Gold memberships have dropped. Golds are the primary way we fund URNA. So faced with rising costs and less money, I felt I needed to put this effort on hold for now. Once our reserves have grown, we will make another attempt. On the positive side, this team of coders was making real progress. If you would like to donate to this effort:
  • here is a quick link to PayPal

  • Membership – Urnotalone membership continues to grow. As of this today we have a total of 34,689 member profiles. There were 33,000 in February. About 22,000 are Bronze. Too many are not visible. There is an algorithm in place to decide if your profile is visible. Here are a couple hints if your profile is not visible: put in a zip/postal code (not visible), add the country, add a city/state even if only close by, click the appropriate groups/orientation/looking for/etc. The more you share about yourself, the better. 
  • Why urnotalone – At times, urna gets to be a bit much. I won’t bore you with details, but it’s hard to please everyone. I try to look for win – win solutions, but not always possible. Recently, a long time member left the site and sent me a note saying “we no longer provided the entertainment they wanted”. I Understand the social part of urna, and for many that is why they are here. However, that is not the only reason. For many urna is a place to explore a part of their life that for many reasons is not known to others, a place to connect to distant friends in the community, and sometimes a place to just share your day. Shorty after receiving this note, I received another that put urna into what I think is a better perspective on what we are about:
  • Hi, wow it’s been almost 12 years. I used to be active in the Boston community and on the website. I was transitioning then and fortunate that the changes have allowed me to go “stealth”. Those will recall my ‘handle, – Anonymous – would consider me (I hope – lol) a good friend both on this website and chat room and in person in the Boston Area.

    This site has grown tremendously and it’s great to see! Urnotalone literally was a lifesaver for some of us. It provided hope, support, and friendship when some of us really needed it.

    Thank you for all you meant to myself and others!



    PS: Happy Cinco de Mayo 



    PS: At the request of author of the letter above, I removed her name. Sadly, still many must hide this part of their lives.