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This is really two questions.
First, why a dispute resolution site? Second, why ADR Resources at http://adrr.com/?
The "why?" of a dispute resolution site is pretty straightforward. I believe in dispute resolution and I felt the urge to share my feelings and perspectives on the topic in an accessible format for people who were interested in the topic.
The reason for ADR Resources at its own domain comes from history and the nature of the web.
ADR Resources was originally "Union Square," a site I hosted on the web space provided by GNN, my ISP (Internet Services Provider), and the name of the building I was in. The problem I encountered with Union Square was that people could not find it. This is because many of the search engines have severe limits on the number of sites they will index or list from any one area. When my ISP was GNN, that wasn't a problem -- GNN had only about 100,000 members or so. When AOL swallowed GNN (and changed the url of the site to an AOL one), it became a problem -- at the time AOL generated 20,000 sites a month (according to the last figures released by AOL at that time) and several engines limited the number of AOL sites they indexed to 50 pages, every two weeks (according to private correspondence with the search engines). That meant that AOL created a 7.6 year backlog every month ...
I decided to open my own domain to avoid the problem. At the same time, I met a number of people with the same frustration I had with the search engines. Since I have a great deal of extra space on my account, I decided to let other mediators use some of it for as long as I had the space available. Since I'm not making any profit on sharing the space, I'm afraid I'm not pushing sharing it very hard and eventually discontinued the program because I was losing too much money on the deal.
So, ADR Resources had three reasons for being in its current format. One, to promote something I believe in. Two, to be indexed by search engines. Three, to share the extra space on my account with those who would like to be on the web and be able to be listed in search engines without spending more than a web presence justifies. See CAVEATS (and check on the lists of free web space providers so you don't have to take any risk to start. There is also a set of free tutorials here and here.
How much business do you receive from having this site?
When I wrote this faq, in several years with adrr.com I had yet to have a paying client contact me via my web site. On the other hand, it has provided me numerous pro bono opportunities and projects. Updated June 2, 2000: I now have had two paying clients as a result of the site (in a period of four years). Updated after 2002 when I changed jobs (and gave up all outside clients and practice) I haven't had any paying clients since (of course -- though I still do pro bono in the Dallas-Fort Worth area). This site was never optimized to generate business, which may very well have affected my outcomes.
How many "hits" does the site receive a month?
While "hits" is probably not the best measurement, after correcting for caching (about 20% to 40% of the hits on the site are served from a ram cache and not the hard disk and as a result do not show up at http://adrr.com/wusage/), this site runs approximately 60,000 hits a week or 260,000 hits a month. After filtering out the pages unrelated to dispute resolution, search engine spiders, and other chaff, there are about 6,000 relevant page views a week. That lets me claim 16,000 page views a month (and is actually 26,000 related page views a month, so I have a fairly large cushion I am able to use to err on the side of conservative reporting). Update June 2, 2000: the site has about 100,000 hits a week, or about 160,000 after correcting for caching. That justifies the claim of 16,000 page views a month with an acceptable cushion. Update, any time after 2000, visit http://www.adrr.com/wusage/ for statistics, remembering the cache fluctuates between 20% and 40%.
Who provides the content on the site? How do I write an article for ADR Resources? Can I use the material here?
I've written most of the content on the site. There are also essays by other persons interested in dispute resolution. Those essays have the names of the authors prominently displayed, with links, etc. of their choice. If you have an article you would like to see on the site, send me an e-mail with the article as an attachment in either html or a word processing format and I'll read it and put it on the site with links, credit, etc. as you specify [E-Mail to Stephen R. Marsh]. To use the material, Fair use policy..
I've got a personal question ...
If you are part of the movement that holds all dispute resolution is personal, and that personality is more relevant than training, etc., you can find more than you need to know at http://adrr.com/mylonas.
How do I start a web page of my own?
I have tutorials at tutorial/index.htm and web/index.htm.
How do I get my web page promoted on your site?
While I wish I could accept money for ratings, etc., that isn't an option either (though thanks to those who have offered). Send me an e-mail and I'll probably list you in my next newsletter, otherwise I use crinfo.org's database now. I am pushing National Mediation (the link at the top of the page), but more because I'm curious to see how they do and hope they succeed, though they have said that some day they might pay me for the referrals.
Do you have a mediation FAQ?