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Old 06-04-2020, 12:46 AM   #103
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Lancaster, PA
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Originally Posted by J-M Frybourg View Post
Doug, basically, what you say is: this site is America - "majority" -, let’s keep it American, the rest is negligible (i.e. minority) and does not matter so much to the majority.

The problem is, the non-US audience, contributors, and number of pictures has grown in proportion, and the declared ambition “best on the net” is international.
I have calculated some other statistics in the past, that showed that the proportion of non-US pictures was steadily and significantly growing over the years.

So, there are 2 paths forward from here: either keep it American, or truly grow internationally. The America-only (or “America first”) version can’t satisfy non-US stakeholders in the long term (contributors, audience). And it will probably be without me.

The success of global aviation pictures web sites shows that the international route is a truly successful one.
Jean-Marc, I hope that you don't think that I am some sort of nationalist promoting an America-first agenda. I have never been against an international presence on RP, but I am merely stating an objective view of why the non-US photos don't do well here.

Your comparison between aircraft and railroad photography is not completely valid. Before the pandemic, my job had me flying into Chicago's O'Hare airport two to three times a month for well over two years. Most times, I would see quite a few aircraft owned by and painted for non-US airlines. Foreign aircraft were, and will again be, a daily presence in the US and familiar to US photographers.

On the other hand, other than a few unsuccessful attempts to break into the US locomotive market by Krauss-Maffei and Faur, and the North American tour of the Flying Scotsman in the 1960's, I can't think of any off-continent trains that have run on interchange railroads in the US since daguerreotypes were the standard of photography.

Human nature is to be comfortable with the familiar, and my point was that the majority of RP viewers, which number many more than the the photographers, will be attracted to familiar trains. Photo clicks drive generate more ad revenue, and like it or not, the majority of viewers are still from the US.

I do not know the business model for RP, but clearly a lot of income comes from advertising. I know that a lot of the ads are targeted, as a Google search one day brings many related ads on RP the next day. It would be interesting to know if target ads abroad come from local firms or from US ones, and whether RP gets revenue from foreign advertisers.

While you have an idea of how RP should function, the bottom line is that it's a business, and your wishes may not fit its business plan.
Doug Lilly

My RP Pics are HERE.

I've now got a Flickr. account, too.

Last edited by Decapod401; 06-04-2020 at 12:59 AM.
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