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Old 03-10-08, 04:06 PM   #1
cc_rider
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ATTENTION - Mid-Atlantic Forum Discussion

Since the regional forum system was set up, there has been an ongoing discussion about having a Mid-Atlantic forum. The states around the Chesapeake Bay tend to see themselves as a coherent region, with common interests. Distinct from the southeast of Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas, and distinct from the northeast of New Jersey, New York and New England. The current division between northeast and southeast occurs at the Potomac River and splits the Washington, DC area in two. Postings of interest to riders in the region are often posted in one forum (missing the other) or in both (double posting) or for lack of a better home, in one of the non-regional forums (commuting, road, etc.) Talk of having a separate forum has been going on for over a year. The Mid-Atlantic roll-call has grown to nearly two hundred names.

I think it is time that we decide what we want. To keep the structure the same or ask for a change.

The BF administrator has asked that we get a consensus on:
1) if we want a separate Mid-Atlantic forum,
and if yes,
2) what geographic area that forum would cover.

I'd like invite everyone concerned to discuss, express their opinions, say yay or nay. Please keep posts polite and to the topic. Since this proposal affects two existing forums, I'm double posting this in both northeast and southeast. Please join in either or both threads (I'd like to do it all in one thread, but we don't have a forum for it yet )

The goal is to discuss and get to some consensus.

I'll throw out the first pitch....

My preference would be a separate forum covering Virginia, DC, Maryland, and Delaware. This would be a clean break along state border lines. Since I live 10 miles as the wheel rolls from the Potomac River, the current split has been more than a little inconvenient. My regular riding range goes from the Shenandoah Valley to Baltimore, Fredericksburg to Gettysburg. I would still visit other forums, particularly northeast and great lakes, but I'd like a forum that I can call home.
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Old 03-10-08, 05:01 PM   #2
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Honestly I'd say leave it as it is. I live in MD, and quite frankly given the Washington DC corridor, VA might as well be 3 states away.

Bottom line is that no matter where you draw the lines, someone on the fringes will be unhappy. So I say leave the lines where they are.

-D
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Old 03-10-08, 05:29 PM   #3
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Traffic in here seems somewhat light. I expect splitting this off to two regions would reduce traffic further. Not sure if that would actually constitute a problem.

How 'bout adding a poll?
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Old 03-10-08, 06:16 PM   #4
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Why even define what the new forum would contain? Let it sort itself out.
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Old 03-10-08, 06:27 PM   #5
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Why even define what the new forum would contain? Let it sort itself out.
Before the administrators make any changes they need a proposal. Brian asked us to discuss it and come to a consensus.
That consensus could by yes or no to a new forum.
But if yes, we need to give the administrators a proposed geographic boundary.
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Old 03-10-08, 06:42 PM   #6
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Honestly I'd say leave it as it is. I live in MD, and quite frankly given the Washington DC corridor, VA might as well be 3 states away.

Bottom line is that no matter where you draw the lines, someone on the fringes will be unhappy. So I say leave the lines where they are.

-D
I'm curious. Does that mean that you feel that your interests are more in common with New York and New England than with Virginia? Or is it that you feel the forum structure doesn't really matter?

I agree about some people on the borders feeling left out. The border has be somewhere. It's just that under the current division the very large concentration on BF members in the Washington DC area is left out on a border and split between regions. Except for perhaps St Louis, no other major urban area seems to be split that way. And unfortunately DC is left off the list entirely.

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Old 03-10-08, 06:50 PM   #7
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Traffic in here seems somewhat light. I expect splitting this off to two regions would reduce traffic further. Not sure if that would actually constitute a problem.

How 'bout adding a poll?
Traffic is a good point. I wonder if the mods could do a traffic analysis of other regional forums.

But you are right - traffic may not be a real issue. I see the purpose of having a regional forum as being to discuss issues and events of interest to particular region. While I often go to NYC to ride, I don't consider it to be the same region as Richmond, DC and Baltimore.

A poll is a good idea. I'll try to set one up in a separate thread.
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Old 03-10-08, 06:57 PM   #8
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One possible division is to have:

New England, which according to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_England) includes Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. And having experioenced some people's attitudes when you lump even New York into New England will instruct you on the error of your ways.

The rest of the current Northeast forum could be the new Mid-Atlantic. Possibly adding in VA and WV.

Although, those south of the Mason-Dixon line may be considered by some to be South, I think to even things out, including a couple of other states under the generic term Mid-Atlantic makes sense.

EDIT: I also think there is at least a small chance that shrinking the regions to a fewer number of states might increase traffic.
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Old 03-10-08, 07:11 PM   #9
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If the people in New England feel that a separate forum would serve their interests, I'd like to see them get what they want. There is already some discussion about a separate New York forum.

The status of Pennsylvania would be my question, too. I tend to think of Gettysburg, Harrisburg and Philadelphia as part of the mid-Atlantic region. Perhaps there should be discussion about southeast PA being included.

West Virginia is another good issue. I'd like to know how the people in WV feel.

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Old 03-10-08, 08:51 PM   #10
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NOVA is more in line with DC and parts of Maryland in Mid-Atlantic, while ROVA (Rest of Virginia) would more likely be considered southeast. When I lived in DC, NOVA, and PG, I met people who had never been to Richmond. Of course, there were plenty of folks in NOVA who were too skeered to go to DC, so go figure.

If a Mid-Atlantic forum is established, I'll visit both it and Southeast.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:59 PM   #11
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I live in New York but enjoy riding in New Hampshire and Vermont. I ride on the Crescent Trail in D.C. and have peddled many miles in Middleburg, VA and Poolesville, MD. I for one would keep the North East Forum intact or add to it if necessary. I believe that posts are clearly labeled if they deal with regional specific items but I would miss hearing about the best bike shops in the D.C area etc. I guess I just don’t understand the need for separation.
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Old 03-11-08, 10:41 AM   #12
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If anything, it would make sense to split a New-England forum, and leave the Mid-Atlantic from NY to VA IMO. Splitting PA wouldnt make much sense either, since where do you draw that line? The Lehigh Valley? Scranton? I-80? It would be less confusing to either include a complete state than it would cutting it all up. I say leave it as it is- there really isnt enough traffic to the forum to make it hard to read anyway.
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Old 03-11-08, 10:43 AM   #13
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As a resident of NE PA, I agree. Don't strip off Philadelphia into a different forum because of some arbitrary line other than a state line.
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Old 03-11-08, 03:54 PM   #14
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As a resident of NE PA, I agree. Don't strip off Philadelphia into a different forum because of some arbitrary line other than a state line.
I tend to think of PA south of I-81 / I-78 as being mid-Atlantic, but I'm not particularly in favor of splitting states up either. Do the people in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh think of themselves as being from different regions?

I hadn't thought of the idea of a mid-Atlantic forum from New York to Virginia, but it does make sense.
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Old 03-11-08, 05:31 PM   #15
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I tend to think of PA south of I-81 / I-78 as being mid-Atlantic, but I'm not particularly in favor of splitting states up either. Do the people in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh think of themselves as being from different regions?

I hadn't thought of the idea of a mid-Atlantic forum from New York to Virginia, but it does make sense.

And there in lies the difficulty. No matter where you draw the line someone gets left out.
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Old 03-11-08, 06:05 PM   #16
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You know you're in trouble when you start citing Wikipedia in order to make a decision.
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Old 03-11-08, 06:58 PM   #17
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I'm curious. Does that mean that you feel that your interests are more in common with New York and New England than with Virginia? Or is it that you feel the forum structure doesn't really matter?
I guess you could say that in that my interests with NY and New England are about on par with VA. Basically little interest. Given that due to traffic patterns I can get to Philadelphia in about the same time as areas of NoVA I tend to go north more than south.

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I agree about some people on the borders feeling left out. The border has be somewhere. It's just that under the current division the very large concentration on BF members in the Washington DC area is left out on a border and split between regions. Except for perhaps St Louis, no other major urban area seems to be split that way. And unfortunately DC is left off the list entirely.

And under your proposed solution what of say, the delaware people. I would think they ride more with the NY, NE PA, NJ folks than VA. They would probably feel as you do now.

And as far as structure, for better or worse it has been the way it is for long enough I think everyone is pretty used to it. And I don't need yet another subforum to keep my eyes on.

-D
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Old 03-11-08, 07:45 PM   #18
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I tend to think of PA south of I-81 / I-78 as being mid-Atlantic, but I'm not particularly in favor of splitting states up either. Do the people in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh think of themselves as being from different regions?

I hadn't thought of the idea of a mid-Atlantic forum from New York to Virginia, but it does make sense.
If I-81 was the split, then I would be about 5 miles from the Mid-Atlantic where I live, about a mile where I work, and in the Mid-Atlantic for my favorite rides...

I'm even closer if we use the Susquehanna... I can see it out my back window when the water is high, and cross it to get to work.

And as for another person's comment, I only cited Wikipedia because it matches what I have been told by a person from New Hampshire.

By the way, I am leaving a lot of messages, but I am really not that passionate about the issue.
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Old 03-12-08, 12:46 PM   #19
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Obviously, if we're going to have these regional forums at all, boundaries have to be drawn somewhere, and occasionally people who might naturally group themselves together will find themselves in two different forums. In most situations, these boundaries are set up in a way such that the splits don't affect a whole lot of people. The main problem, it seems to me, is splitting a more or less distinct urban area into different forums, which means that large numbers of people who might otherwise make a community are forced to post in different forums (or to double post, etc.). This means that, e.g., NY-CT-NJ (metro NYC) need to be in the same forum, as do NJ and PA (metro Philly) (though I suppose North Jersey and South Jersey could be split into two forums, as could Eastern and Western PA, etc. if the need arose). Those of us who live in DC may well ride in DC, MD, and VA, and want to communicate with others who do the same. On the other hand, we probably have little connection to riders in, say, Roanoke or Hagerstown (or Wilmington, for that matter), and I don't know that it makes sense to drag those folks out of their more natural regions to join our little forum.

This is an overly long way of saying: hey mods, just give Metro DC its own forum. It won't make up for the lack of congressional representation, but it's a start.
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Old 03-12-08, 01:46 PM   #20
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That is pretty much what was suggested as "Mid-Atlantic"

DC, VA, MD, DE... Basically Metro-DC with some stragglers allowed from the parts of the state away from DC.

I did look at the number of threads in each forum, and Northeast has the third most threads, behind only Northern CA and Southern CA... So, if any forum is ripe for splitting, it should be Northeast. We also include the largest number of states.... Admittedly a state out here is nothing compared to the size of west coast states, but even so, We cover from the Permafrost of upper Maine down to where people rarely see snow.
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Old 03-13-08, 05:22 PM   #21
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A Mid-Atlantic split would be good, I don't use this forum because it covers way too much geography to see useful to me. I'd vote the following to be included:
MD
PA
DC
VA
DE
WV
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Old 03-13-08, 05:53 PM   #22
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I also don't read the form very often because it covers so much that I am not interested in.

I think PA and DE should be together. When I lived in PA I felt closer in spirit to NYC than DC.

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A Mid-Atlantic split would be good, I don't use this forum because it covers way too much geography to see useful to me. I'd vote the following to be included:
MD
PA
DC
VA
DE
WV
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Old 03-13-08, 06:52 PM   #23
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How about

New England--ME, MA, CT, RI, NH, VT

NY, NJ, PA

DE, MD, DC, VA

As others have said, I don't use this forum as much as I might because it covers too much territory.
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Old 03-13-08, 07:47 PM   #24
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I would be interested in a VA, DC, MD, DE, PA group.
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Old 03-14-08, 06:29 AM   #25
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I'd support a mid-Atlantic group.

West Virginia might want in on it too, though I don't know if there are many WV folk around.

I'd say DC, MD, VA, DE, WV.

The problem with adding PA is that it would then put a split on Philly for the NJ folk. And if NJ were included, it'd split New York City.

A poll could be put up for the Pennsylvanians to vote their allegiances.
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