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Anonymous review site to bring light to a shady industry.

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A detailed account of a Fastlane process...

Simon Angel

Gold Contributor
Speedway Pass
Apr 24, 2016
I understand. All I can think of now is setting up donations for the hosting and moving on to something else.
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Making friends and solving problems!
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Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2019
I picked up TMF last night. I read the chapter about the redline and commitment all the way thought the NEEDS chapter in the CENTS framework. Here is what happened...

First, I remembered I made a commitment to this thing. That I've put in way too much work to give up now.

Second, my website complies with the CONTROL commandment.

Third, the ENTRY commandment means process... and that's exactly what I'm in the middle of.

Fourth, and most important, I asked myself these questions:
  1. Is there a need in my area for a this website?
  2. What are similar websites that exist doing wrong that I could do better?
  3. What improved value do I offer?
  4. What assets do I bring to this community?
  5. Is this website founded on a selfish premise?

These are the answers I came up with:

  1. No comprehensive database exists so people have no idea what is available for them.
  2. No platform specifically for sober livings exists. And sober livings will always exist.
  3. Sober livings that the community loves go out of business either because a) they run out of money because not enough people are aware of them (especially when their first option is full already) and b) one idiot complaining might cause a place to shut down because the rest of the community has no way of championing that sober living.
  4. There’s no way to know what living at a sober living is actually like before you move in.
  5. No platform exists to host a public conversation about what’s going on at these places. This makes for unfit homes serving the wrong type of person leading to ineffectiveness across the whole industry.
  6. Sober livings are not licensed, regulated, or policed. A review site is the best way to hold them accountable and ultimately raise the industry standard.
  7. The recovery community is a tight community already who wants to help each other.
  8. Once the site grows, cash pay sober living operators will finally have the most cost effective and widest reaching platform that targets their specific market.

It was founded when I decided to run ads on Google for one of the few sober livings that I would recommend to someone. Google's policy would not let me (lacking CONTROL commandment). I was trying to help people be aware of this solid sober living while at the same time helping this sober living stay in business. That’s not selfish. And google would not let me. Which I had no control over. So I decided to make a website where a) solid places like this could have more exposure, and b) all the stories, complaints, opinions, reputations, could all be accessed in one place so everybody can be on the same page about what’s going on. That’s why this website was founded. It is not selfish. Especially considering the fact that I haven't generated a profit yet.


Making friends and solving problems!
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Oct 30, 2019
So here is what I'm going to do. I'm going to focus on growth, not profit. I set up my LLC last night (I've already had a sober living threaten a lawsuit for being on my website), I spoke to a lawyer and figured out what I can and cannot do, and now I'm revising the guidelines, processes, terms of service, and privacy policy to focus on building the audience and generate reviews. I set up the staging site and got the plans for the next update to my web developer to start working on. This next update is going to include a few structural changes that solidify the infrastructure of a user-generated website focused on fostering a public conversation about sober livings without the interference of the rest of the treatment industry.

Then its all about building out the database, growing the audience, and getting more reviews.

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