I do believe myself if spending time on a project or website can be time consuming but very rewarding when you see results, not all websites need 10s of thousands to get seen on the web, a lot that spend a large amount of money is when a big company launches a new product to get it effectively seen very fast, gradual growth is usually good over rapid growth with uncertainty, when big company ls spend a lot they split test there marketing tactics to find the best then reduce spend once they find the perfect way to promote their new product,
For everything I typically do, I generally haven't had much of an issue, other than the first year of bugs in the system after the free upgrade (was upgrading from 8.1, so 10 is better in that regards), and the issue of them not fixing the backwards compatibility until one of the last two recent major updates. I had a few programs that I wanted to run that I didn't want to be forced to purchase a digital copy to run, so I was stuck with other software till they finally got around to fixing the backwards compatibility.
Honestly, I have never really liked it. And I've always understood that if I am going to post my personal information online, I am personally responsible for the actions because of that posting, and the only way to remove that, is to and get only those mentions deleted. If the whole thing of privacy is an issue, government shouldn't have to legislate something that is common sense. Post private information online, and it is automatically public, unless it is in encrypted areas where no general user can access.
It is the whole common sense argument of, you wouldn't post your address, telephone number or personal payments to the power company online now, would you? Now why would you want to post your personal information publicly, if you wanted it to be private in the first place?
I guess it could in one sense or another. Partly why XenForo took off, was because of bad publicity because of the suing that was taking place early on in their development. I guess it depends on what is being made public, and if it sounds creditable enough to make it plausible.
Well, from being on the net for as long as I have, I have noticed that some forums or sites can gain rapid growth by using next to nothing in terms of money to advertise. Then again, it is easier to get word of mouth out, if you spend some money upfront in advertising. Doesn't have to be a 5 figure amount though, $100 here, $100 there could be all that is needed to get something off the ground.