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  1. #1
    J3L 2404 gbcb's Avatar
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    The Decline of the Online Message Board

    An interesting piece from the NYT:

    If urban history can be applied to virtual space and the evolution of the Web, the unruly and twisted message boards are Jane Jacobs. They were built for people, and without much regard to profit ... By contrast, the Web 2.0 juggernauts like Facebook and YouTube are driven by metrics and supported by ads and data mining. They’re networks, and super-fast, but not communities, which are inefficient, emotive and comfortable. Facebook — with its clean lines and social expressways — is Robert Moses par excellence.
    Read the rest here.

    I think this mirrors my own experience with BF in general and Foo in particular, although a great and very busy new job has a lot to do with my less frequent reading and posting these days. What do other Foosters think?

  2. #2
    Senior Member JonnyHK's Avatar
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    It's not dead yet!

    As some readers/contributors fade away, others arrive. The old 'faded' folks will still check back in from time to time for specialist information.

  3. #3
    Caustic Soccer Mom apclassic9's Avatar
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    I don't use those social networks - precisely because of the data-mining basis. I like the pace & thoughtfulness of message boards.
    As with mud, life, too, slides by.

  4. #4
    Banned. ModoVincere's Avatar
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    meh...Facebook just feels to corporatey for me.

  5. #5
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    Not to bring up a touchy subject, and everyone save me the nonsense, but I'm an... avid member of the shooting community. I shoot 1-2 times a week at a handgun range. There is a good community there, but nothing like the fellowship of biking. I also do photography on a small scale, nothing professional. But there is a photography community. Nothing... .like the bike community. Lastly, By the name you can tell a bit, I'm a jeep freak. The jeep community is unique to a degree and enjoyably.


    Of all the mini communites I'm involved in I've never been in one like the bike community. I can't just drive up on someone in a jeep and be like "wanna jeep together a bit brother?" at times, I've met a couple of people at the range that I still regularly shoot with, but that's rare. In the photo community, people are.... well, I'd say but you'd just see a lot of "***" everywhere and that wouldn't help, lol. There is not fellowship in photography. Biking though, has been amazing. I've met more people in the last 3 months riding at 4-6am than years of shooting, jeeping and photography combined.

    This community is much the same online. No one treats me like a "nub" here. I'm as green as possible with biking but I'm never treated like my skill level, I'm treated like a human being here.


    THIS, is something facebook can never replicate. Nor the pages and pages of knowledge, nor the unique mindset of the biking community.

    Seasons of the year effect time consumption online for obvious reasons. Here, more than most places. I think you'll see that the traffic here is up in the colder months. Those of us up north don't get 60 degree winters. I've had weeks here where the temps didn't get above zero and the windchill was -20 or lower for days. Not exactly biking weather. During the summer months, i'm on the computer as little as possible, during the winter I may as well sew my ass to this recliner, lol.

    One last thing, new people will join this sport/hobby/past time all the time. Some will leave, some will be unable to continue, some will just lose interest. The unique was places like this treat new people will keep it alive for a long time. The regulars at some places strive to run new people off. Then the regulars find something else to do and you're left with few people. Here, I haven't seen but a few times where people are disrespectful. As long as new people are treated as people, who happen to enjoy the same sport as the experienced guys and girls do, it will always exist.

  6. #6
    J3L 2404 gbcb's Avatar
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    Great post, ifjeepmadeabike. There's definitely an ebb and flow to traffic here, and as Jonny says, you see some people sticking around and others fading away (I think I'm among the latter). In my own case, I've noticed that while a few years ago my first instinct upon seeing an interesting link was to share it with Foo, now I'm more likely to do that on something like Facebook.

    Facebook has been fantastic for me, in that it's enabled me to keep in touch with actual friends of mine all over the world much better than I'd be able to do otherwise. I imagine it suits my own situation -- growing up in one part of the world, going to university in another and working in yet another -- better than if I had stayed in one place and actually had roots and close links to a smaller group of people (I am sometimes jealous of people with strong connections to one place -- it's something I've never really experienced).

    The thing I've always loved about Foo, though, is that it's put me in touch with really cool people I would probably never have had a chance to interact with otherwise: Totally different interests, living in parts of the world I have no connection to, of varying ages, social groups and political stripes, who just happen to think bikes are nifty for any one of a zillion different reasons. I don't know many people in the real world who, to take a highly incomplete sampling of Foosters, are rat lovers, gun nuts, muscle car freaks, bamboo bike builders, belly dancers, BMX riders or former Siberian truckers, but I'm glad I've been able to find them here.

    So while I may not post as much as I used to, I like coming back and seeing that it's still going strong. That, and the muscle memory: I frequently find myself clicking the shortcut to Foo without even thinking.

  7. #7
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    I like both. FB edges out BF due to its ignore feature and the diverse group of friends I have there. If I have a cycling question I tend to find that it is answered quicker and more accurate on FB.
    Here we run the spectrum from honest folks to trolls.
    BF is amusing in a train wreck sort of way.

  8. #8
    Banned. ModoVincere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DataJunkie View Post
    I like both. FB edges out BF due to its ignore feature and the diverse group of friends I have there. If I have a cycling question I tend to find that it is answered quicker and more accurate on FB.
    Here we run the spectrum from honest folks to trolls.
    BF is amusing in a train wreck sort of way.

    BF has an ignore feature as well.

  9. #9
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    It is crap. IMHO

  10. #10
    Senior Member zandoval's Avatar
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    KD5YVG
    -.. .. --. .. - .- .-.. / -. . - / .--- ..- ... - / .- -. --- - .... . .-. / .--. .... .- ... .
    (digital net is just another phase)

    I remember cheating on tests using Morse code in elementary school (till our teacher tapped out zeros from his desk) - Latter is was walkie, then CB, phones and bulletin boards via a blazing 2400 bps modem, Now Twtter, Facebook and others - Even Forums...

    Its not bad - At the very least we are somewhat communing... (KD5YVG)

    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/onceandfuture...ts/audio3.html
    (interesting cast on Morse Code)

  11. #11
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apclassic9 View Post
    I don't use those social networks - precisely because of the data-mining basis. I like the pace & thoughtfulness of message boards.
    +1.
    --Ben
    Carrboro Bike Coalition - putting the "bike" in "CARrboro" :)
    2011 Motobecane Fantom Cross Uno, 2009 Motobecane Fantom CX, 2011 Windsor Shetland
    Previously: 2000 Trek 4500 (2000-2003), 2003 Novara Randonee (2003-2006), 2003 Giant Rainier (2003-2008), 2005 Xootr Swift (2005-2007), 2007 Nashbar 1x9 (2007-2011)
    Current Linux Usage (by machine): Arch: II Debian: II openSUSE: I

  12. #12
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    I am an ETL coder working with CRM software. Y'all have no clue how much info "they" have on everyone.

  13. #13
    Senior Member no motor?'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apclassic9 View Post
    I don't use those social networks - precisely because of the data-mining basis. I like the pace & thoughtfulness of message boards.
    I use social networks more than I like, and really prefer BF and a motorcycle nongroup I still keep up with. I've met a bunch of people from the motorcycle site, and most of them are the type of people I'd like to spend time with. Just like the few people I've met here.

  14. #14
    Me and the cat... Pamestique's Avatar
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    Never been to MySpace. Have a FB account only to spy on my family. I have no public information listed and seldom if ever go there. I really don't get FB at all although my friends and family are very FB active...

    That said, I have over the years, participated in a number of message boards and enjoy them. In fact, the other day I was telling a friend how I ended up at BF - I actually started out at OLN.com (before it became Versus) during one of the Tour de France broadcasts and since that forum got so nasty at times, many people from there move to BF and another forum I used to post on.

    This one is by far the most active and interesting. There is something going on every day. I have belonged to Boards where sometimes there isn't a current post for days!

    Anyway, I hope Boards stay popular alittle while longer since I never want to do the FB thing.
    ______________________________________________________________

    Private docent led mountain bike rides through Limestone Canyon. Go to letsgooutside.org and register today! Also available: hikes, equestrian rides and family events as well as trail maintenance and science study.

  15. #15
    Old enough to know better willmw's Avatar
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    Boards have always been (and still are) my favorite way of interacting on the net. I learn so much from board users at many different boards. Long live boards!!!
    Dangit, I almost only post in Foo, so my post count is abysmal.

  16. #16
    Less is more Headphones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by willmw View Post
    Boards have always been (and still are) my favorite way of interacting on the net. I learn so much from board users at many different boards. Long live boards!!!
    Same here. I love the anonymity feel of message boards.

    I had Myspace and that was it for my social networking experience.
    -2011 Trek 7.1 FX
    -$85 spent on gas since June 01, 2011
    -2011 Monthly Mileage: Jun(50), Jul(109), Aug(79 and counting)
    http://pedalmybike.com/userTrackies/myTrackie3832.jpg

  17. #17
    GATC
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    Facebook is ... weird. Family members, friends, coworkers all jumbled together.

  18. #18
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    Facebook opens a giant hole in whatever security you have on your computer. Zuckerberg's own FB account got hacked.

    And even if it wasn't a security nightmare, it's gotten completely co-opted by businesses, not the least of which is FB itself, doing FB-only-knows-what with your personal information including all of your connections and history in FB.

    It's pathetic. I must get half a dozen emails per week from various online retailers and other companies asking me to go to their FB page and "like" them. Yeah, OK, if you say so, Mr. Businessman.

  19. #19
    Senior Member JonnyHK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg View Post
    Facebook is ... weird. Family members, friends, coworkers all jumbled together.
    You can filter and group a bit with your privacy settings...

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