Jump to content
Mike G

SADLY CONSIDERING LEAVING FOTOZONES.

Recommended Posts

I've been a member of Fotozones and its predecessor NikonGear for over eleven years.  Now I find that due to the creation of the private clubs such as "Carspotters" which I'm strongly against, because its closing down Fotozones to little schisms.

In my mind this is definitely a retrograde step and in my case probably a step too far!

I've been a member for eleven years, joining in 2008. even through the break up of NikonGear!  I visit Fotozones almost on a daily basis and up until the formation of the non general forums have been quite happy. Now there seems to be the start of a fracturing of the forum with these private little schisms. I refer you to the "About Fotozones" statement at the bottom of this page! it appears to me that these new forums is the antithesis of that statement!

So having got that off my chest I'm going to disappear for a while while I consider my position


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike, I was about to reply to your email, but I see you have decided to post this on the forum anyway, so I'll respond here. 

 

As you very well know already, Fotozones has gone through the wringer over the years. I have had more than my fair (and unfair) share of dramas amongst the community, be they about my vision for the site, the way I have dealt with unreasonable people over the years, whatever. It's not easy to be the guy who has to dole out the discipline, especially when some people deliberately try to advance their own agenda (in blatant contravention of the site rules) while still claiming to be your friend. It sucks when the rest of the world will only see those people as the victims when in fact those people knew full well what they were doing and the consequences of it, giving scant regard to the position that their behaviour put me in. So, do I let those  "friends" off the hook and risk retribution from the rest of the community, or do I apply the penalties to them the same way I would to anyone else? I can tell you that regardless of the approach one takes as a leader, it makes no difference to the outcome. You're still the "unreasonable bastard" or as one other former forumite put it "apartheid nazi" when you try to apply the rules equally. C'est la vie. 

 

So, a few very vocal people didn't like the way FZ was changing away from their brand oriented snug and they formed a breakaway site, surreptitiously drawing away the core membership from here to there. Fair enough, I did the same thing to Nikon Cafe when I formed Nikongear's original forum back in 2006, so I can't complain when it is done back to me. However, I was subsequently left with a "dead" membership here, which actually costs a fair amount of money just to have on file if you want to send out bulk emails. Long gone are the days when you could simply send out a bulk email to your membership. Now you have to pay handsomely for the privilege. In the past two years I have been doing a form of "shedding" of those dead memberships by introducing the Dormancy Policy (any accounts not logged into for 3 years are removed) and that has to a large degree solved that particular mail issue. I would rather have a small group of engaged members than a tanker full of names who are neither hot nor cold. 

 

However, I am still left with the issue of re-igniting the forum activity here for the remaining members. Somehow. 

 

So, I thought it would be a good idea to use a new feature of the high end software I have invested in to run Fotozones and create these clubs. Why clubs? Well, from my personal experience in managing this place since 2006, diversity may be what the vocal amongst forumites are calling for, but diversity is certainly not what they are prepared to put up with (as illustrated by the above recounting of NG/FZ history)! By having clubs it is possible to provide the necessary niches that keep everybody happy under the same roof. Not interested in cars? Don't join that club. Not interested in Lightroom? Don't join that club. Want to create your own discussion area for macro lenses? Buy a subscription and start your own club dealing specifically with that. That's the intended purpose for clubs. 

 

Where I may have to fix things is excluding the club topics from appearing in the general feeds that non-members may be encountering them in. I can do this, but then if I do, nobody would ever know about the clubs and those specific niche discussions may never gain an audience. It's a delicate balancing act. 

 

As far as I can tell it is not a drama to join and/or leave a club. I think it's literally one or two clicks. There are no forms to fill in or anything like that. 

 

Sorry, I know it may sound like I am venting a bit here, but I do place a lot of importance on keeping Fotozones interesting and appealing to a diverse audience. Hence the long-winded response. I do hope you will consider why I have done this and what the long term goal is for the Clubs. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On the other hand, Dallas, in the absence if the "clubs" there is nothing that prevents, say, a Lightroom aficionado from starting a Lightroom-related thread in the general forum.

Segregating topics into separate niches which are invisible to the general forum browser (unless he or she is interested enough to join) reduces the overall level of traffic on the general forum and ALSO prevents the casual browser from viewing and contributing to certain discussions.

 

i fail to see how this could be a good thing.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know, Vivion. It's a tricky business and to be honest, I have wrestled with this aspect of the community setup for quite some time. A while back I considered moving all the brand boards into clubs but then as you rightly say, this kind of defeats the purpose of having a general forum in the first place. I wish we had the clubs feature back before certain people got offended at the changes FZ was going through and there was traffic to justify them. Right now I see how they can be beneficial for large sites, but maybe the ones I have created aren't niche enough? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, vivionm said:

On the other hand, Dallas, in the absence if the "clubs" there is nothing that prevents, say, a Lightroom aficionado from starting a Lightroom-related thread in the general forum.

Segregating topics into separate niches which are invisible to the general forum browser (unless he or she is interested enough to join) reduces the overall level of traffic on the general forum and ALSO prevents the casual browser from viewing and contributing to certain discussions.

 

i fail to see how this could be a good thing.

Vivion, I agree absolutely!

I just wished to make a comment about your Citroen van to say I think it’s the epitome of a French vehicle and screams French to me, but couldn’t!

I belong to three other forums that don’t have segregated section for vehicles, and there is lively discussion regarding those cars, trucks and vans and nobody is segregated!

Very sad


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike, sorry to know that you couldn't post your comment to the thread I had started in the "Carspotters".

 

While I understand your annoyance, joining the segregated forum is easy: just to click the join button.  No hassle or worry.  I don't think this is such a big issue as to make you consider to leave...

  • Like 1

"The eye is blind if the mind is absent." - Confucius

http://www.flickr.com/photos/akiraphoto/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Akira said:

Mike, sorry to know that you couldn't post your comment to the thread I had started in the "Carspotters".

 

While I understand your annoyance, joining the segregated forum is easy: just to click the join button.  No hassle or worry.  I don't think this is such a big issue as to make you consider to leave...

Thanks Akira, I am totally against artificial segregation, such as “carspotters” as I said earlier I belong to three other photo forums that have lively “Vehicle” sections that have no restrictions. It has always been possible to have separate forums for specialist interests , why does  Carspotters need to be a club? It doesn’t! And shouldn’t!

The irony is I actually don’t like cars, let alone spotting them, but because this is the 21st century I have to put up with them,  on occasions when need a car I hire a taxi

If I do have to leave I will miss many fine people. 


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike, you don't have to leave. I am really quite aghast that you're kicking up such a fuss about something so trivial. It's not the UN Security Council, you know. Just a little photography forum. And I saw that you had no issues joining the Lightroom Club, so why is this such a watershed thing now? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Dallas said:

Mike, you don't have to leave. I am really quite aghast that you're kicking up such a fuss about something so trivial. It's not the UN Security Council, you know. Just a little photography forum. And I saw that you had no issues joining the Lightroom Club, so why is this such a watershed thing now? 

I didn’t realise I was a member of a Lightroom club, had I realised that and that it was a closed club, I would have kicked up a fuss then. If it so trivial why bother doing it at all. I see it as a thin edge of a wedge  to a splintered Fotozones and that I don’t like the idea of that at all. FZ is drifting away from an all inclusive forum. I remember the angst when NikonGear split away! 
Please  think again, I really don’t want to leave FZ

 

 

PS I resign from the Lightroom club. 


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Mike G said:

I didn’t realise I was a member of a Lightroom club, had I realised that and that it was a closed club, I would have kicked up a fuss then. If it so trivial why bother doing it at all. I see it as a thin edge of a wedge  to a splintered Fotozones and that I don’t like the idea of that at all. FZ is drifting away from an all inclusive forum. I remember the angst when NikonGear split away! 
Please  think again, I really don’t want to leave FZ

 

 

PS I resign from the Lightroom club. 

Mike, I agree.

I see no benefits from the creation of these 'clubs'. I do see some downsides, as I have outlined above.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And I included the Luxembourg MGA in my Le Jog Archive just for you ! .. 😉

 

cheers, Maurice


"Wild things are always faster"

from 'Two Dogs' by Philip Hodgins

Wild-Things@btconnect.com

www.Wild-Things-Photography.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Mike G said:

Please  think again, I really don’t want to leave FZ

 

Well, that is your decision to make. Me? I get to make the tough decisions. Like whether having a forum on my website is worth it at all when nothing I do seems to please anybody anyway. Who really needs all this angst? To be terribly blunt, I've put up with about as much unnecessary whining and complaining as I think one man should ever be forced to endure. I'm going to take a few deep breaths here because I truly fear that if I don't I might say something really rash. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Mike, Vivion, please consider this. Dallas explained why he introduced the clubs. It's a simple construction and may not be to everybody's taste but such is life. As members we simple can't expect a tailor made forum (for whom?) especially as interest is already declining. Moreover, we've all witnessed over the years Dallas sharing his personal struggle with running this forum and his photography business. Members have only seen the tip of the iceberg what's it about running a forum. So please, let's all bear this is mind when we consider something on the forum not to our liking. I'm sure if we all sat together in a  bar for a beer or a wine we would have a great time talking about personal interests, travels and photography. For now, we're scattered around the globe which is in enough peril as it is. Anyway, cheers and I wish you all fair judgement and a nice evening.

Edited by Luc de Schepper
  • Like 1
  • Applaud 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I was close enough we could both and get pissed out of our heads and commiserate with each other!

 

I regret coming across as whining, complaining yes whining no! It was a very poor attempt to be emphatic! And indicate my displeasure. As I was typing my post this morning my computer told me of the latest PayPal subscription payment!
I shall linger longer and fervently hope you will change your mind regarding these damned clubs!

regards 

Mike

 


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Luc,

 

I appreciate your thoughts on  this.

I have not asked for changes to be made.

I did agree with Mike about the clubs.

I can live with them, but wonder whether they are a beneficial addition to the forum.

I hope that Mike decides to stay. I for one have always enjoyed his contributions and photos.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Luc de Schepper said:

Mike, Vivion, please consider this. Dallas explained why he introduced the clubs. It's a simple construction and may not be to everybody's taste but such is life. As members we simple can't expect a tailor made forum (for whom?) especially as interest is already declining. Moreover, we've all witnessed over the years Dallas sharing his personal struggle with running this forum and his photography business. Members have only seen the tip of the iceberg what's it about running a forum. So please, let's all bear this is mind when we consider something on the forum not to our liking. I'm sure if we all sat together in a  bar for a beer or a wine we would have a great time talking about personal interests, travels and photography. For now, we're scattered around the globe which is in enough peril as it is. Anyway, cheers and I wish you all fair judgement and a nice evening.

Luc, if we the members don’t inform Dallas of our concerns he will not know how we feel! I really do appreciate the effort Dallas puts in, I just think in this instance he has made a mistake, splintering the forum to closed clubs is going to be counter productive!

For some reason I lost my temper at what I perceive as a destructive move. For that I apologise, but I am anti these clubs when they exclude people from getting involved! May have been better to reorganise the “Forums” , I’m sure a “Carspotters” forum is possible especially if access to them is made easier such as a post topic button could be accessed from the latest posts page!

 

The idea of a big get together as you say could facilitate a change to the world, if not it would be good to try!

 

regards Mike


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, vivionm said:

Luc,

 

I appreciate your thoughts on  this.

I have not asked for changes to be made.

I did agree with Mike about the clubs.

I can live with them, but wonder whether they are a beneficial addition to the forum.

I hope that Mike decides to stay. I for one have always enjoyed his contributions and photos.

Bless you Vivion, as I said I’ll linger longer.😉


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-35, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe we need a Safari in Europe .. Lynxes in Spain, anyone ? .. 😎

  • Like 1
  • Happy 1

"Wild things are always faster"

from 'Two Dogs' by Philip Hodgins

Wild-Things@btconnect.com

www.Wild-Things-Photography.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Luc de Schepper said:

Mike, Vivion, please consider this. Dallas explained why he introduced the clubs. It's a simple construction and may not be to everybody's taste but such is life. As members we simple can't expect a tailor made forum (for whom?) especially as interest is already declining. Moreover, we've all witnessed over the years Dallas sharing his personal struggle with running this forum and his photography business. Members have only seen the tip of the iceberg what's it about running a forum. So please, let's all bear this is mind when we consider something on the forum not to our liking. I'm sure if we all sat together in a  bar for a beer or a wine we would have a great time talking about personal interests, travels and photography. For now, we're scattered around the globe which is in enough peril as it is. Anyway, cheers and I wish you all fair judgement and a nice evening.

 

Well said, Luc!


"The eye is blind if the mind is absent." - Confucius

http://www.flickr.com/photos/akiraphoto/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Luc de Schepper said:

I'm sure if we all sat together in a  bar for a beer or a wine we would have a great time talking about personal interests, travels and photography.


Thank you so much for bringing a voice of calm to this conversation, Luc. I wholeheartedly support the idea of get togethers between members so that we can actually get to know one another in person and not get bent out of shape over small things like this. If there is anything that has brought me immense pleasure about the journey I have taken with Nikongear and Fotozones it is that I have had the privilege of sitting in the company of many of you who have come out my way. I wish I could come out your way, but alas God has other plans for me right now, so those dreams have to wait. One day... 🙂

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
On 07/10/2019 at 10:09, Dallas said:

 

Well, that is your decision to make. Me? I get to make the tough decisions. Like whether having a forum on my website is worth it at all when nothing I do seems to please anybody anyway. Who really needs all this angst? To be terribly blunt, I've put up with about as much unnecessary whining and complaining as I think one man should ever be forced to endure. I'm going to take a few deep breaths here because I truly fear that if I don't I might say something really rash. 

 

I support your decision, at the end of the day, this is your forum and you get to make the tough calls. You can't make everybody happy. If somebody doesn't like it, they know what to do,. Nobody is forcing anyone to be here. I am surprised at all the whining over things like this, it's only an online forum for f*#$ sake, it is crazy people take this so seriously.

Edited by Mexecutioner
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By visiting this website you are agreeing to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy & Guidelines.