The Health Of This Board
Outdoor Ontario

The Health Of This Board

Axeman · 15 · 357

Axeman

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I've enjoyed this board for the past 15 years -- I've enjoyed sharing...learned a great deal from others sharing and just as important, I've had a few laughs along the way. I'm sure I'm not the only one.


I'm also sure I'm not the only one that has noticed that we seem to be fading. There are more than a few contributors that I miss hearing from: Rob'in'To, Megan, Reuven are a few that I can come up with now...the truth is there are many more...I'll admit that I'd look forward to posts by regular contributors and even considered them a category of friends...


the days between new posts or replies even has been lengthening....back in 2005 when I joined there would be several new posts each day...it seemed like there was something new going on in each new category....I had the luxury of ignoring areas that I didn't have an interest in...I'm not sure when exactly I noticed but it's definitely been a few years...pre-Covid for sure...


I have no idea what's behind this waning trend. Is it competition? New technology? Has this board lost its lustre (hard to believe given the revamped look -- two thumbs up btw on that....I realize I was a bit of a curmudgeon when it first happened....geez I'm too young and immature to be an old fart...shaking my head).


I hope a few read this...and feel the same...and make an effort to share more and reply more when other share. (No my feelings aren't hurt when I don't inspire a response lol I just love reading what people share.)


My grandfather had a saying -- it's in Punajbi. Forgive me but growing up in Canada in the 70's and 80's, I did not learn a great deal of Punjabi so if your Punjabi is stronger than mine I'm sure you'll know that I've butchered this...but here goes...the saying is "jhoog jhoog gio" translates to wishing you a long life...but the actual intention is a blessing of good fortune...he used to say it whenever someone did a solid whether he had the opportunity to thank them personally or quietly to himself. I don't know who started this board...when....or why but to you, I wish a jhoog jhoog gio. And I have many times over the years.


Dinusaur

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Axeman, "Joog Joog Jio" is very much the same in Bengali - my mother tongue. You got the phrase right. "Joog" in Bengali is a decade, so "joog joog" will be multi decade or decades.


About the forum, yes it is in decline for a while as most of the original members slowly moved on to more popular social media sites because of their reach and also mobile friendly interfaces. Interestingly though the moderators are still the same, I presume they do take a look at the forum content to ensure rules are obeyed.


Axeman

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Now that you mention it....yes it is weird that the moderators are the same and yet you don't see posts from them....back in 2007 when I was a kid, there were occasional posts I believe from moderators....but...I'm guessing moderators of course are volunteers and as a volunteer for many things, I am grateful for their moderations....although we're a tame crowd lol


jhoog jhoog Gio ! lol


I hope we can find a way to revitalize at least a little.


Axeman

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I notice that the adminstrators have changed -- one of those things I'm sure happened a little while ago but I'm only realizing now....anyway to the "retired" moderators, jhoog jhoog gio....and to the newish ones, jhoog jhoog gio.





Dinusaur

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The other thing to note is the summary that's available at the home page. For example, when I logged in it showed:


Most Online Today: 180. Most Online Ever: 257 (May 16, 2022, 01:16:14 am)

Most online ever was only yesterday -now that's very interesting. I had to think that 'Ever' here is more like from the date this new server was put in place (two years ago?) and not when the site was first formed. The online number is still healthy, we may still have hope for the site. We have to encourage people to post.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2022, 08:21:56 am by Dinusaur »


Axeman

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oh that's always been there -- show you who's logged into that forum that is reg's plus umm weirdly unregistered guests.


Dr. John

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While I have been on this site for years, I have always been more of a reader than a poster.  I am on many times per week and value reading about what people have seen and particularly enjoy the pictures.  I would post pictures myself if I ever got around to using a photo sharing site.


I have been on several forums since the 2000s.  All have had some decline in activity and one shut down entirely.  My sense is that forums are an earlier platform and many people have migrated to more current social media options, which also capture potential new recruits.


TransAtlanticGoose

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That is a wonderful phrase. I think English would do well to adopt a sentiment like that.

I can only imagine what this site was like in it’s heyday (I’ve only been here for a couple of years now), but looking at historical posts I can certainly imagine the rich contributions that the regular members made. While I imagine that a few members have moved on to Facebook-groups or other social-media platforms, I suspect that most of those original posters have dropped off the posting radar due to a lack of time to post (or worse still, time to photograph!). 

The big shame is that their illustrious mantle isn’t being taken up by a new generation, and that is probably due to the simple fact that searching the web for sites like this one are not as easy as it used to be. (And that’s assuming that a new generation even knows to search for such a forum. … and I suppose knows what a forum is for that matter…)  This forum certainly doesn’t employ the fancy search-engine optimization techniques used by the big players.

Oh, and thanks for the thumbs up on the revamping of the site. I know it was a bit of a change out of the blue, but I suspected that the old look would probably seem dated, and would be a potential turn-off for newcomers. Moreover, since the site needed to be migrated to a new server anyway, changing the look was really not much extra work.



To hopefully answer some of the other queries:

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‘it is weird that the moderators are the same’
- Well their accounts still exist, and I tried not to change the moderating assignments (except for those who asked to be removed), but really, none of the mods have been active in over a year, some longer. So there hasn’t been much moderation, except when I happen to notice a spam post coming in. And really, you guys don’t really need much moderation, you generally all get along pretty well. ;-P



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‘I notice that the administrators have changed’
- Yup. I took over from Andy when he posted that he was planning on shutting down the server because his health was preventing him from keeping it running.

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‘Most online ever was only yesterday’
- Sadly I suspect that a lot of those daily visits are bots crawling the site, rather than real users, because the number is roughly the same from day to day, which would be unusual for real people. - In fact, in the last year the number of fake-user signups have increased really dramatically (187 pending ‘new users’ today alone as of writing this!). I have actually had to disable automatic acceptance of new users because The Bots are becoming too smart, and can bypass the CAPTCHA and bird-related questions with ease these days. Now I have to manually review each ‘new user’ to see if their email is already in a database of spam emails, and if their IP makes sense. 
« Last Edit: June 26, 2022, 04:33:18 am by TransAtlanticGoose »


Ally

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I have not had a lot of time to birding, those times I do, it was super windy. I am making a trip to Windsor and hopefully to Pelee next week, so hopefully I will have something to post.


Axeman

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 To Ally -- Good luck in Point Pelee! I went there once and I didn't see much at all but had the misfortune of running into one of those clowns who feels the need to one up you....I saw 15 prothonotary warblers....blah blah blah....


To TransATlanticGoose.....THANK YOU for taking over from Andy -- I feel a little guilty though not noticing the change....and wherever he / she is, I hope they are doing better....I do now remember seeing "Andy" all over the board for admin.....a jhoog jhoog gio to both of you!


Maybe we can recruit some people to help you -- the work to check the new users sounds DRAINING.....


I truly do appreciate the board -- I've learned a lot and as long as this board exists, that trend will continue....I love being able to read out to help ID....I love being able to share birding and nature stories....and read...and comment.


Dinusaur

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And now Shortsighted has gone AWOL - he is not sighted for a while. What gives?


I knew one old member who went by his handle Bobobird was active in the forum for a long time. I met him for the first time while photographing Ospreys in Oakbank Pond, most likely in 2013 or 2014. Unfortunately he passed away in July of 2020, he was last active in the forum sometime in 2019.

« Last Edit: June 26, 2022, 07:54:45 pm by Dinusaur »


Ally

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To Ally -- Good luck in Point Pelee! I went there once and I didn't see much at all but had the misfortune of running into one of those clowns who feels the need to one up you....I saw 15 prothonotary warblers....blah blah blah....


I understand completely of what you mean. During my phrase of searching for Shortsighted, I used to ask every birder in the park with glasses: are you Shortsighted of the forum? Once I did that at Tommy Thomson Park, and that man said: No. I never post anything. Then I said: I just saw a snowy, and to which he replied: I saw seven today. I was super happy that he was not our Shortsighted.
Maybe I should go look for him again. I mean our Shortsighted.


Axeman

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Well the good news is that Shortsighted was last sighted on May 22 of 2022.....


you're going to LOVE my snowy story...I spent a winter looking for them a few years back....mostly egged on by Napper and his posting of Snowies all around the GTA....I'd hear from all sorts of people about snowies around....and it was the non birders sharing that bugged me the most....I mean it meant nothing to them....my doctor -- a fellow birder -- shared a pic taken by a friend of his...a non birder...who was out walking his dog and saw 60 in a field....I shared this with my kid and she burst out laughing (knowing all my efforts)..."this guy wasn't even looking for them and he saw 60"....anyway I went up to the general area where this fellow saw his parliament in a field (Chesley) and I saw a parliament...smaller but still....I saw 20 lol.


Ally

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He does that every year.
I don't do well with parliaments of owls, suit me well only sighting one or two once in a while.


Axeman

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He does that every year.


Surface on May 22?



I don't do well with parliaments of owls, suit me well only sighting one or two once in a while.


In Indian culture, Owls are seen as fools whereas of course in Western culture they're wise....I get a chuckle out of the fact that a flock of them is called a parliament....lol...is parliament a flock of wise folks or fools? lol you be the judge.