It would be nice if this site could drop those members who have no interest in participating. Some members have not been active since they signed on over a year ago. Would it be possible to automatically send out a message after three or six months of inactivity and ask if the member is still available to host? If "no" or no response, maybe drop them?
I am usually available to host, especially to those members who are willing to pay it forward - and I respond quickly. When traveling in hopes of being a guest, I get about a 25% response rate within a day to my simple request. I do have a concern about etiquette about sending out multiple requests, getting more than one "yes" and having to say "sorry, I found someone else" after a person extends a kind offer.
Thanks so much for this site. I am sure it has its share of headaches. Hopefully I am not one of them.
We used to send a "pester" email once a month for three months starting in October, ending in December, of every year asking members who had not logged on in a year to do so as a sign of their continuing interest. In February of the following year we delete those who had not signed in for over 12 months. That usually added up to a few thousand members.
Last year we started sending the pester emails quarterly. This makes clearing out the dead wood easier by spreading it our across the year.
Even so, there are still plenty of people who sign in but don't actually participate. We wish there were a way to keep everyone interested and active but we haven't found it yet. Suggestions welcome!
Please dont close my account. I do log in at least once a month and ever since i register as a member, i only had one (a couple) guest from Netherland. As you can see, i am the only one beacon of respite for cyclist heading towards East Malaysia. On the other hand, there are hundreds of host available at West Malaysia. I am sorry for my English comprehension and the wrong use of "on the other hand". I hope i get my point across. There are mechanism in place to remove inactive user and i agree in the manner of which it is being carried out. If i understand it well, every quarterly for the next 3 months. well, i logged in for 2015. Last one and this is kind of sad too. Due to some personal issue, i might have to close my account for the time being (about 3 year) long story. There goes the light of East Malaysia. No warmshowers here. But at least my friend (who happens to be a radio operator) is active in Miri.
Dropping members is not a good idea. Especially with the new smartphone app, it is not difficult to send requests to a number of hosts and you should not worry about the politeness of contacting more than one -- they understand that you are on the road and must cast several requests to be sure of getting one acceptance. They understand and won't mind.
There are many reasons for a person's inactivity. Where I live, two years might go by without a WS request. We are not on a major cycling route. If you come through and think that I am inactive, you'd be making a mistake. And, then, I might be away at just that time and not be able to respond to you right away. I would hate to be banished from WS just because of such coincidences.
I have met some wonderful people because I was able to contact them ahead of time and wait for a reply. In the end, I think we have to accept that "it takes all kinds."
I don't log on unless I have to (such as posting this reply), and being in the depths of Cornwall in the UK, I don't get many requests to host anyone, since I am not on the way to or from anywhere in particular.
It could easily be a year between logons, and I have only had two requests for posting in the last three years (which coincidentally I couldn't do, being away from home on the dates requested).
This doesn't make me disinterested, or voluntarily inactive - it may qualify me for being dropped by the site though.
I'm still a cyclist, but because of other commitments I rarely go away on cycle tours, so so don't need to ask for someone to host me.
I'm still a cyclist, but because of geography rarely get asked to host another cyclist.
I still a cyclist, and sometimes am too busy, tired, involved, distant or otherwise unable at a given time to jump through someone else's hoops to log in to a site just to prove I'm still all of these things.
Don't confuse inactive with disinterested - that doesnt do anyone any favours at all, least of all those of us who would if we could, but for whatever reason don't get asked!
We have had a biker who before he left on his tour had sent messages to WS hosts giving a range of dates, when he started his tour he gave updates. This worked well for me for I too could plan and say yes we would be here. Its just a idea.