First I want to say to Garry I really understand what you are saying, and I think I understand what you are trying to accomplish.
I also look at but have only posted once to another bike forum, that the name escapes me as I write this. Some of the stuff that is written on that forum is just plain ridiculous. People call each other names, and insult each other for the stupidest reasons. "you ride a what? you #$^&", Real jerky stuff.
This forum does represent the SWAMP Club, and as far as I can tell it really is a unusual club, in the way the rides are conducted and how it is a very social club, not just a bike geek club (I mean me too
Because of the nature of the club, and the apparent openess (sp?) of the people involved, the conversation flows freely. We share and debate ideas. Disagree even, but generally respect each other. We seem to value each others opinions. There are about 20 ish of us that are on and participate here a lot. So we sort of know each other in some capacity. Everytime someone new chooses to participate, every one of us welcomes them with open arms.
In my opinion the guy or girl that is looking at this forum, in Washington, or New Mexico,or Osh Kosh should see what a great community Swamp is and how naturally the conversation flows, and how much we love off road biking here in Florida. It is however; incumbent on them to realize this is a Forum not a Bulletin Board. It is up to us to behave as adults.
Perchman, I too take this personally sometimes. So I understand your reaction. I have had it too.
Now don't get me wrong, I don't think that this is a forum about our spouses, or our nephew's nursery school. Off road biking is what brought us together, we will talk about all of that other stuff while we are together, and as we get to know each other better while we are riding, but in the middle of the thread, someone says "we should go ride, how about thursday?" Or "how is your injury healing?" This is clearly biking related. If it is biking related, it should clearly be part of this forum. Just remember, (and here is where I am guilty!) that if that converstation that is off topic continues for more than a post or two, move it to a private message or a new thread, or even a phone call.
I had a debate with someone this past week or so, that when I said that these were conversations, they disagreed with me. Please look up the literral definitions of Forum, General , and Discussion
. I believe you will see what I mean. It is literally an open public converstion, we "the club" just choose to make it about biking.
That means, again in my opinion, Tires, Injuries, trail conditions, and time trials, and riding safety...snakes...etc.......
In summary I do believe that there should be oversight, and I think that Garry, and Kevan deserve tremedous credit, the reality is without them, we wouldn't have this forum. They don't get paid, they work this into their spare time, and they do it because they love biking. Conversely this is NOT a Bulletin Board, which means that there can and should be back and forth with some leeway (sp?) side to side.
As for the issue of applause or smite. It is an issue of respect, as far as I am concerned. If you don't agree or like what I have said , you are completly entitled to that and frankly I don't expect you all to do so. Either reply with an opposing opinion and let's learn from each other, or send a private message telling me what jerk I am , or just move on, But don't under a cloak, disrespect me, or anyone on this forum, we are here because of our love for off road biking, and presumably because we enjoy the forum.
Those are my thoughts, thanks for letting me share them with you, I will continue to participate in this forum. I have rambled enough.
BTW, As I rode Panther today, I thought how much I love my hardtail
Just saw the group hug that Jonathon posted!! Love it!