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Miscellaneous Topics other than strictly NAN Fishes


26 replies to this topic

#1 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 27 September 2016 - 01:07 PM

Matt DeLaVega, on 26 Sept 2016 - 2:50 PM, said:

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I have tried Mark, but we just can't figure out the logistics. Yes it could go rogue. However if it were members only, it would not be seen by the general public. We may need to eventually have it so that we can compete with Facebook. I think I am the only staff member remotely open to the idea, so don't count on it in the near future. It could build friendships between members, but it could also do more harm than good.

 

I haven't followed FB closely, but it seems mostly civil, no?  But tell me how this forum is failing to compete with FB.  I'm not asking you to defend anything, just exploring ideas and requesting facts/impressions.  I don't have an agenda, just brainstorming.

 

FYI, for people joining this thread, the discussion started around a forum poster who knows a lot about Chinese natives, and whether or not subjects like that could be discussed somewhere on this forum, such as a general free-form conversation area.



#2 Dustin

Dustin
  • Forum Staff

Posted 27 September 2016 - 03:51 PM

This has been discussed for years behind the scenes of the forum by the moderators.  I see where there would be interest in discussions that aren't directly related to native fishes but I have also seen over the years how quickly these discussions can evolve into political, religious or other explosive topic. 


Dustin Smith
At the convergence of the Broad, Saluda and Congaree
Lexington, SC


#3 Michael Wolfe

Michael Wolfe
  • Board of Directors
  • North Georgia, Oconee River Drainage

Posted 27 September 2016 - 03:59 PM

I think there is a perception that there are more people posting 'stuff' on the facebook page than on the forum.

I've never been concerned, as I see FB and the forum as serving two very different populations. And I see the 'stuff' as being of very different value.

I like talking to NANFAns about all sorts of things, but that is not what the forum is about. It's about North American native fishes.
Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. - Benjamin Franklin

#4 lilyea

lilyea
  • NANFA Member
  • Peace River Watershed, Central Florida, USA

Posted 27 September 2016 - 06:36 PM

In another thread entitled, "Fish from Central China" the moderators chose to leave the thread open with the implication that it was appropriate as long as there was a comparison or connection back to North American natives.  IMHO, I would love to learn more about the lesser known fish from around the world, however I think it needs to be framed in connection (i.e., compare or contrast) to fishes specifically described in the NANFA species list.  If this is allowed then it would seem that the threads should be placed in the general discussion area until there is enough content and interest to generate a dedicated area.

 

I can remember many times standing on the shores of various bodies of water around the world (including in China) and wondering about the fish in the water in front of me.  Although they sometimes reminded me of a familiar species I had no idea what they were or where to turn for more additional information.  I see the potential for this style of thread to be a benefit to the traveler/explorer as well as to the researcher looking for future project inspiration.  I encourage an inclusive approach as long as relevance to NANFA is established.



#5 Leon

Leon
  • NANFA Member
  • Los Angeles

Posted 27 September 2016 - 07:08 PM

Just read the post"Fish from Central China": http://forum.nanfa.o...al-china/page-3and surprisingly realized I know this guy, Young! He is also a member of the Chinese native fish club I mentioned in the Trading Dock Section. Glad I'm not the only Chinese here. Unfortunately(or Fortunately), he has introduced a lot of native Chinese fish in the topic, no need for me to post again and causing chaos. 



#6 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Board of Directors
  • Ohio

Posted 27 September 2016 - 07:41 PM

Facebook, has no rules really. Talk about whatever on the FB page is how it seems. We cannot follow suit here. I suppose that has a certain appeal to some people. If you look at how many people have joined the FB page vs. here in the last bit, it seems that that format is preferable to many nowadays.Or many may just be catching up. What more can I say, we are comparing apples to oranges. However I believe in days ahead and even now forums are and will have a hard time competing with the simplicity and freedom of social media. I spent a while spending a good bit of time on FB, but really, it is not for me. Now I check my account every couple weeks. Entirely too much junk and politics, and other stuff I have no interest in. I prefer it here, but the freedom afforded there is hard to offer on the forum that represents us officially. You may notice that there are two NANFA FB pages. One just is, and is a bit of a free for all, and the other is more official and is  more moderated. It is a concern for our forum in the future. Not sure there is much we can do as the times, they are a changin'


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#7 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Board of Directors
  • Ohio

Posted 27 September 2016 - 09:10 PM

Just read the post"Fish from Central China": http://forum.nanfa.o...al-china/page-3and surprisingly realized I know this guy, Young! He is also a member of the Chinese native fish club I mentioned in the Trading Dock Section. Glad I'm not the only Chinese here. Unfortunately(or Fortunately), he has introduced a lot of native Chinese fish in the topic, no need for me to post again and causing chaos. 

Go for it. Use this thread as far as I am concerned, keep the discussion there, but have at it, as we have many similar species. As long as it all stays in this existing thread, I won't give you any trouble. Maybe the other mod's will be okay with it since it exists and is only one thread. Can't promise, and can't say I am doing the right thing, but if it stays there, enjoy. Please try to compare or relate to native American species as much as possible.Really in discussion, be sure to show how sympatric the species in that area are to ours.


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#8 littlen

littlen
  • NANFA Member
  • Washington, D.C.

Posted 27 September 2016 - 09:58 PM

I am really into the tropical hobby as well.  Both fresh and saltwater.  I enjoy NANFA because it is very specific and it is the place I come to for NANFish inquiries.  I could just as easily join Monster Fishkeepers, or ReefCentral.....and many of group specific forums if I want to discuss fish from other parts of the world.  I think we have something very unique here and shouldn't dilute it.  MFK has a north american native section, and it isn't up to par with the same type of valuable information we share here.  

While we may not grow in leaps and bounds as the FB page does, we have the 'big guns'/'old timers'/'science-y & environmental gurus' here.  Some may also dabble in FB, but the best info is disseminated in this forum.  I am all for a Wal-Mart type forum where you can discuss all your fish and aquatic needs.  But on that same token, I wouldn't go to Wal-Mart to buy any fish.  I would go to a LFS where the quality and knowledge is much better.

I think it is very productive to have this conversation and see where we stand with it.  But as I've heard often, more sub-forums equals more time for our volunteers and board members to patrol which we're already short on.  Perhaps if folks spent a little more time detailing their profiles, we could simply search and find out who has interests in other areas.  Then PM's or private emails could be sent to discus.  (I recently emailed gerald for about some SA cichlids, having figured out he was in to them as well).

Just my humble 2 cents.  Cheers. 


Nick L.

#9 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Board of Directors
  • Ohio

Posted 27 September 2016 - 11:12 PM

I am really into the tropical hobby as well.  Both fresh and saltwater.  I enjoy NANFA because it is very specific and it is the place I come to for NANFish inquiries.  I could just as easily join Monster Fishkeepers, or ReefCentral.....and many of group specific forums if I want to discuss fish from other parts of the world.  I think we have something very unique here and shouldn't dilute it.  MFK has a north american native section, and it isn't up to par with the same type of valuable information we share here.  

While we may not grow in leaps and bounds as the FB page does, we have the 'big guns'/'old timers'/'science-y & environmental gurus' here.  Some may also dabble in FB, but the best info is disseminated in this forum.  I am all for a Wal-Mart type forum where you can discuss all your fish and aquatic needs.  But on that same token, I wouldn't go to Wal-Mart to buy any fish.  I would go to a LFS where the quality and knowledge is much better.

I think it is very productive to have this conversation and see where we stand with it.  But as I've heard often, more sub-forums equals more time for our volunteers and board members to patrol which we're already short on.  Perhaps if folks spent a little more time detailing their profiles, we could simply search and find out who has interests in other areas.  Then PM's or private emails could be sent to discus.  (I recently emailed gerald for about some SA cichlids, having figured out he was in to them as well).

Just my humble 2 cents.  Cheers. 

Nice in many ways Nick.


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#10 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 08:35 AM

Yes.  Makes sense.  I have no agenda.  Just brainstorming.  One thing to consider:  allowing free form discussion in a small segment of this forum makes it more attractive to a wider group of readers.  If those readers are here they will be exposed to the more disciplined discussion in the other areas of this forum.  Then they will get the good stuff we all appreciate.  Really it comes down to the individuals and their personalities.  I do appreciate that there are monitors here to police the discussion, but only because there are trolls that need policing.  I would just suggest that forum members report trolls to the monitors so that they can be blocked.  Let's not "let the terrorists win" by preventing us from doing things that will benefit us and native fishes.  Again, no agenda.  Just stimulating thought, hopefully.  Well, maybe _that_ agenda :)



#11 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 08:45 AM

I also think there may be a little bit of PTSD (Don't mean to minimize the significance of that condition in its original context).  When forums like this, and the foregoing email list serve, started, there was no social media.  The trolls, instigators and nut-jobs had no where else to go to anonymously irritate people.  Now, with the proliferation of social media, I think their effect is dramatically diluted.  They don't have to bother us native fishheads any more to get their fix.   There are so many other, more gratifying, outlets for that kind of fixation.



#12 Dustin

Dustin
  • Forum Staff

Posted 29 September 2016 - 09:49 AM

I would love to have this sort of area.  Obviously, we all have other interests outside of native fishes and probably share many other interests that we could discuss.  The biggest issue is that we have to have rules that govern the activity of the forum and these rules must be specific and uniformly enforced.  Once you allow some amount of leniency, some people will continue to challenge the moderators, much like children when testing boundaries.  The moderators have had to ban multiple people over the years due to this type of behavior, at least a few of which are/were active NANFA members.  This has led to some feelings getting hurt on both sides of the argument but the moderators have always had the valid argument that all rules are enforced uniformly and absolutely. 

 

I would propose a section that allows for the discussion of fishing and fish keeping that is not directly related to NA natives, with the caveat that any posts that even remotely delve into the realms of politics, religion, etc. will be removed immediately and with the possibility of locking the thread.  This is a fish related forum and I don't see the need to discuss anything outside of fish and fishing.


Dustin Smith
At the convergence of the Broad, Saluda and Congaree
Lexington, SC


#13 Doug_Dame

Doug_Dame
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 11:24 AM

Like a "Social/Other, not fish (and not political/religious)" forum ?

 

I kinda like the idea, because I have NANFA friends and acquaintances who I don't see elsewhere, except on (too-sporadic) field trips. On the other hand, that's what Facebook is really good for, although I personally don't use it much. My main concern about having an open-ended forum is the question of whether it would add to the moderators' burden or not. Which we could theorize about forever, but is ultimately an empirical question that experience would answer. (That's if we decide there's some benefit of having a Social forum that makes it worth trying.) With all volunteer organizations, it's useful to bear in mind that we only have so many volunteers and volunteer hours that sustain the organization, and we have to be careful in spending those. 

 

I would like to say that the Fishes of China thread by Young was one of the very best we've had in a long time. Superbly done, and I found it extremely interesting. The apparent "niche similarities" between many fish we know, and the Chinese fish, was striking. But obviously, while all fish are native to somewhere, those are not native to North America, as in NANFA. So I would really like us to figure out a way to allow/support/encourage more postings along those lines. Perhaps we allow discussions of native fish in their native habitat, but prohibit discussions of non-NorthAmerican fishes simply purchased at a pet store and brought home for an aquarium ... there's plenty of general fish-keeping info available elsewhere. 


Doug Dame

Floridian now in Cincinnati
 


#14 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 11:44 AM

The problem with a bunch of rules and stipulations is that, then, someone has to be tasked with enforcing them, reference your volunteer-resources comment, Doug.  So maybe the first question is whether folks could live with an only superficially monitored and enforced section where, hopefully, well-intentioned people can talk about whatever they want.  I do like the idea of having a social/BS venue for the purpose of relationship building.  Call it, say, The NANFA Tavern?  Then, folks know going in that some will be overstimulated or under restrained, just like in real life.  We used to do much of this on the list serve.  I'm trying to let Matt, et al off the hook as far as moderating responsibilities.



#15 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 11:46 AM

No, wait, name change:  NANFA Hospitality Suite.  Those of us who have attended various fish conventions will understand what that suggests in terms of human interaction.



#16 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 11:49 AM

I'd like to reiterate that, with the passage of time, and the greater experience with online interaction, I'm hopeful that folks have adapted to a mode of civil interaction via remote, online venues.  There _was_ a lot of testing in the past of the limits.  Maybe we have put most of that behind us.  Maybe???



#17 Doug_Dame

Doug_Dame
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 12:15 PM

One possibility would be to limit the ability to post in the Hospitality Suite to NANFA members. I don't mean to be exclusionary in suggesting this. It's just that with NANFA members, there's a track back to a real person, and that person has made some level of investment in the NANFA org and goals. And so has a reputation to protect, so to speak. That helps with self-discipline, and thus greatly reduces the (likely) need for much in the way of moderator (adult) supervision and intervention.


Doug Dame

Floridian now in Cincinnati
 


#18 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 12:41 PM

One possibility would be to limit the ability to post in the Hospitality Suite to NANFA members. I don't mean to be exclusionary in suggesting this. It's just that with NANFA members, there's a track back to a real person, and that person has made some level of investment in the NANFA org and goals. And so has a reputation to protect, so to speak. That helps with self-discipline, and thus greatly reduces the (likely) need for much in the way of moderator (adult) supervision and intervention.

That's an option, but of course limits the utility in terms of outreach.  Maybe if the conversation looks good, it becomes a recruiting tool?



#19 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 12:50 PM

That also creates an administrative task in terms of controlling access to members.



#20 Doug_Dame

Doug_Dame
  • NANFA Member

Posted 29 September 2016 - 12:55 PM

That also creates an administrative task in terms of controlling access to members.

 

True. But presumably it's a one-time setting ?


Doug Dame

Floridian now in Cincinnati
 




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