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1 Review by Graeme

Gay Authors

Gay Authors

6/3/17

GayAuthors.org is a site that has two purposes. The first is as a story site for gay and gay-related stories. The second is a gay and gay-related community.

The commercial side is purely in the first part, the story site, but even there, the goal is to have the majority of stories free to all readers. There is a limited set of stories that are only available to paying members, but that's largely presented as an alternative to asking for donations to keep the site running. By paying a small monthly subscription, members can read an expanded set of stories, including a number that were previously free but have now been published commercially.

While there have been a handful of problems with the subscription process after a software update, it generally runs smoothly. I suspect many members purchase a membership more as a way to keep the site running than to access the Premium group of stories. The Premium group of stories are the way the site thanks those members for their help.

The quality of stories ranges from fair to excellent, as you would expect from a free site with user-submitted stories. The site tries to maintain a minimum set of quality, so while there are certainly stories that would never make it commercially, they are all readable. They also impose a small set of content restrictions, though for most stories those constraints don't apply.

The community part of the site is active and vibrant. As can be expected with any sort of diverse online community, there are the occasional cases of friction between members. The moderation team appears to do a good job of keeping that friction to a minimum.

As the site acknowledges that ad revenue is a significant revenue stream, the moderation team is vigilant with ensuring that the site content submitted by the users meets the guidelines specified by their advertisement supplier, Google AdSense. If there's a downside, it would be that they can be overly cautious with what they allow, but since the site is run by volunteers, that's not an unreasonable attitude to take. However, as they also allow members as young as 13 to join the community, they are also very protective of member privacy and do their best to ensure that all content is acceptable to viewed by minors.

Overall, for what the site is -- an online community of diverse individuals, and a collection of largely free stories -- it does an excellent job.

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