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IanG
18-Dec-2012, 15:10
Is there any chance we could have some regional Forums like APUG has, I'm asking about UK/Europe in light of the demise of the separate UK Large format forum. which gets about one post every 10 days (except for it's sales sectyion).

A UK/Europe sub-section for sales would be useful as well.

The third point is when will we get non US moderators ? It would be great to broaden the moderator base in a more meaningful way, maybe one from Europe & one from Australia to counter the excess bias that prevails.

Ian

Steve Smith
18-Dec-2012, 15:14
All volunteers take one step forward!


Steve.

IanG
18-Dec-2012, 15:16
All volunteers take one step forward!

Steve.


You just have . . . . . . . . Admins - he'd be very able and . . . . . . . . . . .

Ian

Kirk Gittings
18-Dec-2012, 15:20
Excess bias meaning regional? For myself when nominating a moderator, I could give a damn where anybody is from or now lives. I'm not aware that any moderator was ever picked for that. In all cases that I have been involved in there was usually one person who at that time distinguished themselves in terms of frequent civil and flame calming contributions, not violating the rules and who showed some evidence of a backbone,

But I will put it to the moderators, certainly worth some discussion.

IanG
18-Dec-2012, 15:34
Kirk, in fact I haven't seen an issue at the moment but there is a percieved bias, rightly or wrongly. More importantly having one or two non US moderators would help promote the website outside the US and there are many members from other countries/continents.

A benefit as I've pointed out before is they would straddle different time zones.

In addition they might break this awful tit for tat US political banter that's been seething here, I'm not blaming this forum itself for that at all we all see the entrenched views of both US camps and the total lack of tolearnce for opposing view on the International news daily.

It's not so much the moderating of individual posts/threads but getting a better balance, there's no doubt there's been some very odd moderating this past year. I think broadening horizons might help significantly.

Anyway moderation was the minir point, Regional sub forums were my main question.

Ian

Steven Tribe
18-Dec-2012, 16:15
I understand you raising this Ian, given the number of threads I have kept away from this past few weeks (like the plague, in fact!). But I fear that a non-US mod would have been seen "in an even more unfortunate light" if he/she had been involved in the more dramatic interventions. And we don't have the background to understand all details of the historical/current conflicts. Disposing of Spam and Moving to appropriate section OK, but not the rest of the stuff.

I, personally, would like to continue with the current thread divisions. It is always fun to see what people out West have written during the night - and likewise, we (Europe) provide a similar entertainment for the early mornings in North America. Most of the threads where I place my puny contributions have a majority of contributors from the US.

But most of all, there is the problem of "mass and momentum".
I just don't think there are enough active UK, German, Italian French members to keep it alive, thriving and interesting.

mdm
18-Dec-2012, 16:41
Why fragment the forum, its active because it aggregates people from all over the place.

Ken Lee
18-Dec-2012, 18:55
It's active because it aggregates people from all over the place.

Yes !

Internationalism is one of the forum's most attractive qualities

El internacionalismo es una de las cualidades mßs atractivas del foro

интернационализъм е един от най-привлекателните качества на форума

国际化是本次论坛的最吸引人的特质之一

internacionalismus je jednÝm z fˇra atraktivnÝch vlastnostÝ

quốc tế lÓ một trong những phẩm chất hấp dẫn nhất của diễn đÓn

अंतर्राष्ट्रीयता मंच के सबसे आकर्षक गुणों में से एक है

国際性は、フォーラムの最も魅力的な資質の一つである

al■jˇ­arŠkni er einn af mest a­la­andi eiginleika Ý Forum

Sal Santamaura
18-Dec-2012, 21:29
Is there any chance we could have some regional Forums like APUG has, I'm asking about UK/Europe in light of the demise of the separate UK Large format forum. which gets about one post every 10 days (except for it's sales sectyion)...Demise? The UK large format forum is working just fine


http://www.lf-photo.org.uk/forum/index.php?sid=1c01b4ce22c61a739e54504d1ac371bf

and seems content to be what it is, despite your insistent, rebuffed attempts to change it Ian. Do note that For Sale/Wanted posts make up a substantial portion of the traffic at this forum too.


...A UK/Europe sub-section for sales would be useful as well...Having complained that the UK forum gets only sales posts, you want to duplicate that activity here??


...when will we get non US moderators...to counter the excess bias that prevails...If and when the owner and moderators of this forum decide to seek additional moderators, I hope they will choose from the best available volunteers, regardless of location. However, the "bias" you describe is nonexistent. Moderators enforce the rules, period. There is nothing biased about it.

I am categorically opposed to regional categories. There's nothing to be gained and a lot to be lost by fragmenting the participation of members here. Let's continue integrating the best from everywhere.

Leigh
18-Dec-2012, 21:47
I am categorically opposed to regional categories. There's nothing to be gained and a lot to be lost by fragmenting the participation of members here. Let's continue integrating the best from everywhere.
+1

Well said.

- Leigh

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 02:21
It's active because it aggregates people from all over the place.

Yes !

Internationalism is one of the forum's most attractive qualities

I'm not suggesting fragmentation, quite the opposite, boosting the International appeal of this Forum. Fragmentation occurs when groups leave setting up separate forums taking some of membership with them.




But most of all, there is the problem of "mass and momentum".
I just don't think there are enough active UK, German, Italian French members to keep it alive, thriving and interesting.

In the UK and Europe there's a significant increase in LF users from a low after the mass exodus to digital and most of the photographers I meet feel that the UK LF site doesn't cater for their needs and has been stagnant for the past few years, virtually all weere once active participants and some feel this site is too US biased. Now in using that word bias thats what others have told me, obviously the site has a largely US/Canadian active base but there's still many of us from elsewhere.

I don't think by having sections for specific UK/European discussion or sales that the site will be diluted at all, and it needs careful thought before changes are made anyway but what I am suggesting is that the site become more appealing to non US participants. I'm suggestiong options to make the site more inclusive, not exclusive.

Sal's comments have to be taken with a pinch of salt, and are largely irrelevant.

On the subject of the Sales/Wanted forum this probably needs some modifications anyway (but that's up to the moderators), there's so many new threads daily (which is great) that the section has become unwieldy and probably needs some sub sections anyway. Most sellers in the UK posting their items on the UK LF Forum are alsoposting them onthis forum as well, so there's already some duplication, but UK/European prices are higher (for general items) so anyone selling into the US is too expensive, remember that we are frequently paying over 30-35% in taxes & charges when we buy from the US so a specific UK/Europe sub sales forum is a posible idea.

Ian

Emmanuel BIGLER
19-Dec-2012, 02:44
Regarding European LF forums, there are at least three active forums which I am aware of:

- The British, as mentioned by Ian http://www.lf-photo.org.uk/forum

- Ze frenche houanne, houaire a´lle hamme houanne ovve ze modÚratorts : http://www.galerie-photo.info/forumgp/index.php

- Das deutsche Gro▀formatfotografie forum http://www.grossformatfotografie.de/

If I add our US forum, where I'm currently writing this message, this makes quite a lot of things to read and do.
Regarding sales, I've successfully bought here an item from a gentleman living in Northern America whith whom I have exchanged e-mails in English, hence I do not see any barrier regarding for-sale/wanted as well. The transaction was for me one of the smoothest ever !

Regarding the low traffic on the British LF-UK forum, one of the reasons, if compared to our French galerie-photo.info forum, is that our French forum is exceedingly permissive, since we discuss of medium format cameras as well. A strict barrier is preserved, though, regarding 35 mm and sub-35 mm film photography, totally banned as well as sub-24x36 mm,digital photography.
As of 2010, taking into account the actual evolution of professional equipment and real business life in professional photography, we have decided to accept discussions regarding digital cameras with a sensor of a minimum size 24x36 mm.
In our for sale/wanted section, however, the minimum required sensor or film size is 4x4 centimetres, in order to filter out all 35 mm and sub-35 mm stuff, be it with film or silicon sensors. Those rules are strictly enforced by the moderators.

The LF-UK forum is very strict like an old gentleman, not as permissive as us on the French MF/LF forum http://www.galerie-photo.info, since the LF-UK forum does not take into account anything detected or detectable with any kind of sensor with an area smaller than 100 square centimetres. This filters out anything 35 mm and medium format, film or silicon.

The main issue IMHO is the language barrier, still a formidable challenge in the XXIst century.
The European Union has 27 countries and almost 27 different languages ... not taking into account Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland (where the 4-th official language is Rheto-Rumansch ;) )
We do have some English- or German- speaking friends regularly reading and posting on our French forum.
Daniel W. Fromm (hello, Dan) has contributed several superb bi-lingual articles as well on www.galerie-photo.com, the companion web site of our forum.
But in order to do so, you should not be afraid to write text in a foreign language, and written things, even on a forum, have almost the same impact as any official document can be. Hence people are reluctant to participate in forums in a foreign language, by fear of writing inappropriate text, or by fear of being mocked at, for their low level in the language in use on the forum.

But this language issue is totally irrelevant for Ian, I apologize (and apologise as well).

Struan Gray
19-Dec-2012, 03:39
The UK forum might be a little more active if they ever got round to sending out those confirmation emails to new members.

Or perhaps they just don't want me :-)

I prefer to use a flat index and my own powers of reading. Dividing things up into endless small subforums just makes the occasionals look lonely. The single biggest improvement would be if the new, tougher mods would delete any For Sale postings which do not say where the item is located?

I love to read about LF photographs and cameras in languages I only have vague grasp of. I still treasure the discovery of the loopbodenkamera (http://www.luxe-immo.com/fiche-artiste-en-689-hendrik-kerstens.html).

Steven Tribe
19-Dec-2012, 05:16
The single biggest improvement would be if the new, tougher mods would delete any For Sale postings which do not say where the item is located?

I love to read about LF photographs and cameras in languages I only have vague grasp of.

Or perhaps they just don't want me


Yes, Yes and Yes.
Or, in connection with the 1st, make location (not just "Earth" or similar!) a requirement of initial registration. And mount a campaign for current members to add sensible information in this rubric.

Denis Pleic
19-Dec-2012, 05:57
The UK forum might be a little more active if they ever got round to sending out those confirmation emails to new members.

Or perhaps they just don't want me :-)


Same sentiments here. I registered more than a month ago, sent emails and whatnot, but still no word from admin(s) there.

EOTS
19-Dec-2012, 06:27
Ian,

I also think it would only lead to fragmentize the sheer power of knowledge accumulating from the internationality of the forum participants.

This outweighs the aspect of "not having to read" the US politics related threads (which I find interesting myself BTW) you mentioned.

If you look at APUG, the regional forums itself seem to stagnate or are quite "low-traffic" ...
http://www.apug.org/forums/forum136/

Where it would make sense IMHO are regional announcements (meetings, exhibitions, ...).

Best regards,
Martin

Renato Tonelli
19-Dec-2012, 07:03
I would prefer to keep it as it is.
Some members seem to have a propensity for going ballistic - sometimes it takes some self discipline to refrain from joining in or ignoring the post or thread.

I think that moderators, on the whole, are very accommodating. I have seen threads that amount to blogs.

When I want to know what's happening in Italy, Large-Format-Phototgraphy-wise (not that much), I log onto fotoavventure.it which is also very well moderated but does not have the large amount of information available here.
There is an EU forum as well but haven't looked at it in more than a year because there isn't much to look at.

Forgot the quote:

It's active because it aggregates people from all over the place.

Yes !

Internationalism is one of the forum's most attractive qualities

El internacionalismo es una de las cualidades mßs atractivas del foro

интернационализъм е един от най-привлекателните качества на форума

国际化是本次论坛的最吸引人的特质之一

internacionalismus je jednÝm z fˇra atraktivnÝch vlastnostÝ

quốc tế lÓ một trong những phẩm chất hấp dẫn nhất của diễn đÓn

अंतर्राष्ट्रीयता मंच के सबसे आकर्षक गुणों में से एक है

国際性は、フォーラムの最も魅力的な資質の一つである

al■jˇ­arŠkni er einn af mest a­la­andi eiginleika Ý Forum

anglophone1
19-Dec-2012, 08:34
+1

[QUOTE=Renato Tonelli;968516

It's active because it aggregates people from all over the place.

Yes !

Internationalism is one of the forum's most attractive qualities

El internacionalismo es una de las cualidades mßs atractivas del foro

интернационализъм е един от най-привлекателните качества на форума

国际化是本次论坛的最吸引人的特质之一

internacionalismus je jednÝm z fˇra atraktivnÝch vlastnostÝ

quốc tế lÓ một trong những phẩm chất hấp dẫn nhất của diễn đÓn

अंतर्राष्ट्रीयता मंच के सबसे आकर्षक गुणों में से एक है

国際性は、フォーラムの最も魅力的な資質の一つである

al■jˇ­arŠkni er einn af mest a­la­andi eiginleika Ý Forum[/QUOTE]

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 08:54
Where it would make sense IMHO are regional announcements (meetings, exhibitions, ...).


That's along the lines I mean, I'm not suggesting anything more than very specific UK/European (or any other regions) news.discussion.

Ian

Sal Santamaura
19-Dec-2012, 09:24
..Sal's comments have to be taken with a pinch of salt...Given their factual basis, why would a reader do that?


..Sal's comments...are largely irrelevant...On the contrary, they are directly relevant to your suggestions and potential motivation for making them.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 09:57
If you look at APUG, the regional forums itself seem to stagnate or are quite "low-traffic" ...
http://www.apug.org/forums/forum136/



Part of the reason for that is that many of the active UK APUG members splintered off and formed FADU which had quite an effect on the volume of posts from the UK. I know the reasons why they did this and it's not really pertinent to this forum and the issues discussed in this thread, and if they'd asked Sean he'd have been able to accomadate their requirements.

Ian

sanking
19-Dec-2012, 09:57
Given their factual basis, why would a reader do that?

On the contrary, they are directly relevant to your suggestions and potential motivation for making them.

Yes, facts are very useful in discussions. Making changes because there is a "perceived bias" does not make much sense to me. In my experience "perceived bias" is mostly in the eye of the person who sees it, not in reality. I certainly have not seen any bias on this forum, either directed toward regions or in terms of politics. But not to confuse issues, I highly value the international component of this forum and would welcome good moderators from other parts of the world.

But above all else, keep the stinking political discussions off the forum.

Sandy

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 10:12
I highly value the international component of this forum and would welcome good moderators from other parts of the world.

Sandy

That's all I'm really saying. If we looked at the overall membership, then the fact that all the Moderators are in the US and many on the West Coast then that is a bias however one looks at it. Others read the words biased and percieved bias quite differently rather than a broader diversity and a better representation of the membership in the Moderator team if it included non US members.

Ian

Pete Watkins
19-Dec-2012, 11:15
Ian,
I'm very happy with this forum as it is. The UKLF forum is dead! Very few posts and it really should be named "The Ebony Appreciation Society". If you don't own one (no need to use it, just shoot yer gob off about it) they try to make you feel inferior. Half of the UK members seem to spend most of their lives in France for reasons better known to themselves and this strange practise is also a something to brag about. So if you spend a lot of time in France and have an Ebony for decoration you're the ideal UK forum member. Oh, I forgot your UK base (if you bother with one) needs to be north of Stoke on Trent.
Sal, you're not a UK resident so what the heck has a specifically named UK forum got to do with you anyway???
Pete.

Ed Bray
19-Dec-2012, 11:19
I applied to join the UK Large Format Photography over 6 months ago, never had a reply or my membership verified despite several emails to the mods asking what was happening.

Not too disappointed as I like this forum.

Pete Watkins
19-Dec-2012, 11:38
Ed,
You need to claim ownership of an Ebony and preferably apply from a French E-Mail address.
Pete.

Kirk Gittings
19-Dec-2012, 11:42
IanG
the fact that all the Moderators are in the US and many [moderators] on the West Coast then that is a bias however one looks at it.

Really? Have you even looked? What a fantasy. Me and Ralph are in New Mexico (the Southwest), Rick is in Virginia (East Coast), Ken is in Massachusetts (East Coast), The owner who does almost no moderation is on the West Coast, Tom is in Minneapolis (Midwest) and Neil-I don't actually know because it is not actually important to us. He might be in Madagascar.

And would you please explain what bias has been exhibited towards.........what non-US members? European Cameras? European Film? What? Please give real examples you are talking about when it comes to actual moderation activity. "Broader representation? What the heck are you talking about?

It is truly amazing to me what the moderators get blamed for here. Not getting enough info about Europe or Asia? Make some posts!

What do you think concretely, exactly, would change if there were some non-US moderators.

We have had to ban US members probably 100 to 1 against non-US members. Should we restrict bans to numbers representative with the membership from various parts of the world?

You have been very vague about what difference this would actually make.

The only compelling point you have made is about time difference and thereby having 24 hour moderation.

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 12:03
That's all I'm really saying. If we looked at the overall membership, then the fact that all the Moderators are in the US and many on the West Coast then that is a bias however one looks at it. Others read the words biased and percieved bias quite differently rather than a broader diversity and a better representation of the membership in the Moderator team if it included non US members.

Ian

(Note: Kirk started typing his short message while I was typing my long one. We are needing the same information to proceed, but I'm taking the far more pedantic approach just to make sure nobody will think my becoming a moderator will save them from my excessive wordiness. I have my image to uphold, after all. Choose which post to respond to, heh.)

Bias does not follow--this is a logical gap you are trying to fill on the basis of assertion only. Sorry, but that isn't good enough. That said, I'm unwilling to refute the value of your perception by making my own assertion, at least not without giving it some fair thought. But the burden of demonstration is on you to reveal what you are perceiving, not on us to prove it does not exist. One can't prove a negative. So, let's think about it, but without depending on assertions alone.

One would hope that the principles of this forum, as embodied in the guidelines, are not nationalistic in scope, other than being English-centered which is unavoidable.

Thus, if the moderators are staying true to those principles, there should be no bias. Again, specific examples would help us understand what you are perceiving. Any moderator added to the pool of moderators would be selected in part because of their demonstrated compatibility with those principles. Beyond that, I don't think anybody is concerned where they come from. But if there is a bias, and your desire is to overcome that bias, then you would want somebody specifically incompatible with those principles, as demonstrated by the current mods. Assuming the mods would agree (which is not a given at all), following that advice would require more clear articulation on your part in order to proceed usefully. Otherwise, we might implement your recommendation (a non-U.S. mod) without addressing your concerns (by choosing a non-U.S. mode that is just like the U.S. mods).

Having a moderator in a distant timezone seems useful, but I doubt that is really what you are driving at.

The notion of for-sale posts identifying point of shipping for the item being sold, and the location at which payment is made, seems reasonable to me and we are discussing it. But that was Sal's idea, and I doubt that is what you are talking about.

It is (obviously) true that most of the political discussions are driven by North American members, and thus center on North American controversies. Remember that moderators have only two tools in performing normal actions: They can delete posts, and they can ban users who persist in flouting the rules. Moderators have no control over what is encouraged, except by posting the same sort of encouragement anyone can post, and with the same authority.

Given that the toolbox for moderators is limited, there are therefore two possible errors when making moderation decisions: That posts get deleted and users banned when they should not, posts do not get deleted or users banned when they should. A North American bias might be that political posts from outside North America are not deleted and users not moderated appropriately. But the opposite error is less likely, that non-North Americans have more of an interest in the posts that ARE deleted than North Americans have. All political discussion is prohibited. This is not the place for non-North Americans to find out about North American politics--that is easy to do elsewhere. So, that leaves the only likely error that some non-North American political posts slip by because we North American moderators don't recognize them for what they are. Thinking back, some of those who have been banned for persistently flouting the no-politics rule (or who have left because they could not tolerate the moderation) have not been North Americans, probably in reasonable proportion to the presence of non-North Americans on the site, so I'm not sure this error has much data to support it.

I suspect that the perception of most decisions about moderation have more to do with the political point of view of the perceiver, rather than by where they come from. But given that American politics is not exactly broadly representative of participants from elsewhere, there may be a greater percentage of them whose ox they think has been gored by moderator actions. But, really, the objective of moderation is not to take action on the basis of point of view--political discussion from all points of view is prohibited. As moderators, we strive to transcend our personal points of view.

I can name a couple of examples of the types of subjects that run into this problem. One is gun control, very much in the North American news these days. Most non-North Americans live where gun control exists at a much higher level than in the U.S., and so people from those places might not understand or be sensitive to why the issue is so contentious here. Another is health care, where most non-North Americans don't understand the issue as North Americans might, and again don't recognize the contentiousness of the issue. Thus, they may think that moderator actions are too strong because that contentiousness is not visible to them. I would argue that perhaps those actions aren't strong enough in that case. (My use of these two examples is not a reason to discuss them. Bringing up examples and trying to re-litigate them is not the same thing.)

There is a lot to think about here, but as the moderators debate it, it would help if we could really understand what is driving this perception. If no further clarity is articulated, then I'm not sure what action we could take that would not be riskier than leaving it alone. Mutatis mutandis.

Rick "not willing to change the formula on the basis of broad assertions of perception" Denney

Kirk Gittings
19-Dec-2012, 12:12
Thank you Rick. Well stated as opposed to my impatient rant. That is why you were such a great candidate for a moderator.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 12:34
IanG

Really? Have you even looked?

Yes, but I have in other threads alluded to other peoples perceptions of bias based comments in their post. And then you muddle regional bias with bias in terms of thought, (possibly politics), & actions on the forum.

You ask why should we have International non US moderators as well - it'll attract more International members.

There's a very partisan attitude in your replys Kirk. Why are you so against having non US Moderators. RDenney's post misses the point as I'm not talking about bias in the terms he thinks, sorry Rick because I did state clearly I'm talking about regional bias not the bias of individual moderators thoughts.

Is it important, some of us outside the US think so but we'd expect high quality moderators who'd bring their own views to the way the forum's run.

Ity's easy for those in the US to be complacent and you are :D I am suggesting expanding the moderation maybe by one or two. Maybe some people would like to make suggestions of possible new non US Moderators by PM to Kirk, Ken & Rick.

Ian

Kirk Gittings
19-Dec-2012, 12:53
There's a very partisan attitude in your replys Kirk

I have stated again and again, I don't care where the moderators live. Period. I am not against non-US moderators. You made that up.

AND you have yet to give a single example of how the forum would change except extremely vague generalities "bring their own views to the way the forum's run". Would you please attempt to give us an actual example?

Also, as an aside, for those of you who don't know. QT grew up in France.

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 12:58
You ask why should we have International non US moderators as well - it'll attract more International members.

Okay, since we are missing the point: Tell us how having non-U.S. moderators will attract more non-U.S. members.

What action do we take to attract members in the first place, American or otherwise? I don't see any, other than by maintaining a civil environment that allows equal access. We certainly strive to do that.

After all, the moderators are not listed in a way that a prospective member can see. The moderator activities can only be observed by happening upon them while digging through threads, or assumed by reading the guidelines.

I can see regional bias being visible to prospective international users in two ways:

1. The subjects of the posted threads ("All the talk is about American stuff--I want talk about European stuff.")

2. The locations listed for the membership at large, seen as prospective users navigate around in forum. ("Everyone here seems to be American. I want to talk to Europeans.")

Both are controlled by the whole membership, and it's hard to see how we few moderators could influence that one way or the other, other than by segregating the non-U.S. members so that they become uniquely visible. Is that part of what you are suggesting? I think that idea has not generated any support other than in your own posts, Ian. If I were an international member, being so segregated would be negative, not positive.

Now, having a forum in a more comfortable language for non-English speakers is another matter. But I don't know how that can be solved, especially to the liking of someone from the UK.

Rick "still not getting it" Denney

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 12:59
I have stated again and again, I don't care where the moderators live. Period. I am not against non-US moderators. You made that up.

AND you have yet to give a single example of how the forum would change except extremely vague generalities "bring their own views to the way the forum's run". Would you please attempt to give us an actual example?

You try and twist words Kirk, there's a huge dirrence in saying you have a partisan attitude to me accusing you of being against non US mderators.

I've stated before and I'll state again it broadens this Forum and it's base, you're agruing for the sake of it.

Ian

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 13:00
Okay, since we are missing the point: Tell us how having non-U.S. moderators will attract more non-U.S. members.

What action do we take to attract members in the first place, American or otherwise? I don't see any, other than by maintaining a civil environment that allows equal access. We certainly strive to do that.

After all, the moderators are not listed in a way that a prospective member can see. The moderator activities can only be observed by happening upon them while digging through threads, or assumed by reading the guidelines.

I can see regional bias being visible to prospective international users in two ways:

1. The subjects of the posted threads ("All the talk is about American stuff--I want talk about European stuff.")

2. The locations listed for the membership at large, seen as prospective users navigate around in forum. ("Everyone here seems to be American. I want to talk to Europeans.")

Both are controlled by the whole membership, and it's hard to see how we few moderators could influence that one way or the other, other than by segregating the non-U.S. members so that they become uniquely visible. Is that part of what you are suggesting? I think that idea has not generated any support other than in your own posts, Ian. If I were an international member, being so segregated would be negative, not positive.

Now, having a forum in a more comfortable language for non-English speakers is another matter. But I don't know how that can be solved, especially to the liking of someone from the UK.

Rick "still not getting it" Denney

You miss the points by such a long way . . . . . . A shame really as usually you make sense.

International means others as well as Americans, it's simple really.

Ian

Sevo
19-Dec-2012, 13:01
Is it important, some of us outside the US think so but we'd expect high quality moderators who'd bring their own views to the way the forum's run.


The job of the moderators should NOT be to bring their own views to the forum beyond their regular (and previous) role as regular visitors. The lack of moderators in other, distant time zones (and hence sometimes delays in spam cleaning during European morning/Asian noon hours) would be a more valid reason to internationalize.

Andrew Plume
19-Dec-2012, 13:01
............and for me, I agree with Pete Watkins, in that I'm entirely happy with this Forum (sorry Ian) and really see little reason to change anything. It does all that I ask for a Forum (even though my comments are minimal), I read, observe and take in

and it seems very beneficial to me to have all of the mods on pretty well the same time zone (give or take the odd hour), since if there's a particularly high profile issue that needs immediate resolution, then it can be dealt with pretty quickly, rather than waiting for someone to get up many hours later

andrew

Sevo
19-Dec-2012, 13:03
and it seems very beneficial to me to have all of the mods on pretty well the same time zone (give or take the odd hour), since if there's a particularly high profile issue that needs immediate resolution, then it can be dealt with pretty quickly, rather than waiting for someone to get up many hours later


... unless it is during the time when all moderators sleep.

Andrew Plume
19-Dec-2012, 13:06
sure

but the majority of the posts etc are from North American members

andrew

Kirk Gittings
19-Dec-2012, 13:08
You try and twist words Kirk, there's a huge dirrence in saying you have a partisan attitude to me accusing you of being against non US mderators.

I've stated before and I'll state again it broadens this Forum and it's base, you're agruing for the sake of it.

Ian
Really. Here's is a direct quote from you, "There's a very partisan attitude in your replys Kirk. Why are you so against having non US Moderators". I was initially for this proposal and took it too the moderators as a suggestion with some merit. I'm trying to get you to give some actual examples which add some fuel to that position besides time zones. But I'm seeing that this is a waste of my time.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 13:11
Andrew, I'm not making any points here about the way this forum is run, just that they should think about how we want the best possible moderators but that might include non US for a change.

Non US moderators would send a very positive message about the International nature of the website/forum.

Ian

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 13:20
Really. Here's is a direct quote from you, "There's a very partisan attitude in your replys Kirk. Why are you so against having non US Moderators". I was initially for this proposal and took it too the moderators as a suggestion with some merit. I'm trying to get you to give some actual examples which add some fuel to that position besides time zones. But I'm seeing that this is a waste of my time.

I should have asked "Are you against" not "why are you gainst", my error.

The truth is for those of us active here I doubt it makes much difference but to lurkers and new posters from outside the US I think I could make a significant difference. The whole point of my thread here is about how this site appears at first to non US members.

It's just suggestions, maybe others can come up with other and better ideas to make this Forum more welcoming to non US new/potential members.

Kirk, it's not a waste of time to encourage and keep new mwembership.

Ian

Andrew Plume
19-Dec-2012, 13:22
thx Ian, understood

regards

andrew

Andrew, I'm not making any points here about the way this forum is run, just that they should think about how we want the best possible moderators but that might include non US for a change.

Non US moderators would send a very positive message about the International nature of the website/forum.

Ian

Steve Smith
19-Dec-2012, 13:22
Another advantage of a non US moderator is that there would be more likelihood of 24 hour coverage as we're not all awake at the same time.


Steve.

Sal Santamaura
19-Dec-2012, 13:29
...Sal, you're not a UK resident so what the heck has a specifically named UK forum got to do with you anyway???...About as much as this US-based forum has to do with you. :D I've been registered at the UK forum for years, visit it regularly and post there occasionally.

There's a thread currently active at the UK forum lamenting low activity level; several participants in this thread posted there too. A moderator's response blames, among other things, "the IG era." Anyone who's regularly read the forum understands that he's referring to Ian's period of insistent posting about how bad their forum was and what "improvements" it needed.

I strongly suggest that the moderation team here not expend much of their limited, volunteer energy dealing with this thread and it's "suggestions." Neither they nor the membership ought permit one loud voice to sway them from a path or drive them away.

Change is something that can happen, but, contrary to a frequently heard platitude, it's neither inherently good nor bad. In my opinion, it shouldn't be implemented unless there's good reason. In this case, I don't see any justification.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 13:44
About as much as this US-based forum has to do with you. :D I've been registered at the UK forum for years, visit it regularly and post there occasionally.

There's a thread currently active at the UK forum lamenting low activity level; several participants in this thread posted there too. A moderator's response blames, among other things, "the IG era." Anyone who's regularly read the forum understands that he's referring to Ian's period of insistent posting about how bad their forum was and what "improvements" it needed.

I strongly suggest that the moderation team here not expend much of their limited, volunteer energy dealing with this thread and it's "suggestions." Neither they nor the membership ought permit one loud voice to sway them from a path or drive them away.

Change is something that can happen, but, contrary to a frequently heard platitude, it's neither inherently good nor bad. In my opinion, it shouldn't be implemented unless there's good reason. In this case, I don't see any justification.

Actually Sal, we remember your trolling there :D

This thread here is because of the UK site's demise, but the person you quote was not a player in the scenario, which is actually very actively under discussion and probable ongoingaction by the way, all the points I made over a year ago were acted on but the site's 2 admins hadblocked the moderators implementing them I learnt today. It's a case there of the Moderators being held to ransom by inactive admins who happen to own the domain name and host the site. You need to get some facts right for a change.

I make suggestions Sal based on knowledge, if they aren't implimented I won't be upset or bothered, but they come from many comments from UK members who for some reason or other don't post here.

Ian

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 13:56
You miss the points by such a long way . . . . . . A shame really as usually you make sense.

International means others as well as Americans, it's simple really.

Ian, where did I give you any impression that I didn't know what the word "international" means? Given that all moderators at present are Americans, one logically assumes that anyone suggesting the need for international moderators would be wanting to add non-Americans. I did not accuse you of wanting to replace American moderators with non-American moderators.

If I'm missing your points so consistently when I don't usually, perhaps the only logical conclusion is that the problem is not with the reception, but rather than transmission. My lengthy replies are aimed at taking your terse statements enough distance to try to ascertain what they mean. With all due respect, you are not making your points clearly enough or meaningfully enough so that we can understand them. Maybe it's our fault, maybe it's yours, but the burden of clarity is on you--you are the one with something you are trying to get across. I'm open to it and I admit sometimes I'm dense.

Again, I ask you how lurkers and prospective members would detect this regional bias of which you complain, or even how they would know the identity and location of the moderators in making their decision whether or not to join and participate? And what visible actions could moderators take that would rectify that bias? Adding non-American moderators is not a problem, but it is also mostly if not completely invisible to lurkers. So that wouldn't solve your problem.

Rick "trying, hopefully not in vain" Denney

Pete Watkins
19-Dec-2012, 13:57
I've got to give it to you Sal, you're always good for a laugh!
I respect your sense of humour.
Keep it up,
Pete.

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 13:57
Another advantage of a non US moderator is that there would be more likelihood of 24 hour coverage as we're not all awake at the same time.

Agreed. But I don't think that alone is what's on Ian's mind.

Rick "feeling like a doctor whose patient won't go past 'it hurts'" Denney

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 14:01
...but they come from many comments from UK members who for some reason or other don't post here.

Such as?

If there are many comments, give us, say, the top ten.

Rick "wondering why this is so hard" Denney

Sal Santamaura
19-Dec-2012, 14:02
Actually Sal, we remember your trolling there...I have never "trolled" there or anywhere else. Ad hominem attacks demean only the attacker.


...all the points I made over a year ago were acted on but the site's 2 admins have blocked the moderators implementing them I learnt today. It's a case there of the Moderators being held to ransom by inactive admins who happen to own the domain name and host the site...So you're saying that the UK forum's owners didn't like your suggestions and decided not to have their moderators implement said suggestions? And you think there's something wrong with the owners of a private venue doing what they want with it?


...You need to get some facts right for a change...Please point out any facts I've gotten wrong. You've not identified any so far.


...if they aren't implimented I won't be upset or bothered, but they come from many comments from UK members who for some reason or other don't post here...I won't be upset if, should your suggestions not be implemented, some UK residents decide not to post here. There are plenty of members from the UK and other countries around the world who have, do and will continue to post at this forum. Its archive is replete with valuable information. I see no benefit in changing that by fracturing the membership into regions.

Rather than moving from one large format forum you want to change to another large format forum you want to change, creating havoc in each place, why not start your own UK large format forum? Invest in a domain name, server space and forum software (or write your own), then run it as you see fit.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 14:06
Ian, where did I give you any impression that I didn't know what the word "international" means? Given that all moderators at present are Americans, one logically assumes that anyone suggesting the need for international moderators would be wanting to add non-Americans. I did not accuse you of wanting to replace American moderators with non-American moderators.

If I'm missing your points so consistently when I don't usually, perhaps the only logical conclusion is that the problem is not with the reception, but rather than transmission. My lengthy replies are aimed at taking your terse statements enough distance to try to ascertain what they mean. With all due respect, you are not making your points clearly enough or meaningfully enough so that we can understand them. Maybe it's our fault, maybe it's yours, but the burden of clarity is on you--you are the one with something you are trying to get across. I'm open to it and I admit sometimes I'm dense.

Again, I ask you how lurkers and prospective members would detect this regional bias of which you complain, or even how they would know the identity and location of the moderators in making their decision whether or not to join and participate? And what visible actions could moderators take that would rectify that bias? Adding non-American moderators is not a problem, but it is also mostly if not completely invisible to lurkers. So that wouldn't solve your problem.

Rick "trying, hopefully not in vain" Denney

I think people are rather more fickle than you think Rick, you need to think from a non US perspective, and please I'm not complaining of a regional bias rather stating there is an obvious one in the moderator team, which cannot be denied, and suggesting that might be changed in the future. It's that simple no whole page replies :D

Ian

Sal Santamaura
19-Dec-2012, 14:07
I've got to give it to you Sal, you're always good for a laugh! I respect your sense of humour. Keep it up...Nothing I've posted is humor. It's deadly serious. Protecting the community here requires as much vigilance as helping stave off unjustified attacks on Ilford's quality and pricing. All are susceptible to reputation harm. None deserve it.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 14:25
So you're saying that the UK forum's owners didn't like your suggestions and decided not to have their moderators implement said suggestions? And you think there's something wrong with the owners of a private venue doing what they want with it??

Get it right Sal, just for once.

The UK LF forum was a collective originally, nothing to do with me, unfortunately the still active originators grew apart from the gradually less active pair that registered the domain name and host the swebsite. The fact that the active took on board changes which were suggested by many of us (inc 2 others in this thread) was up to them, and it's their issues with the admins that have crippled the website. I have zero to do with that - do you unsterstand that - it's very simple !!!!

In fact I'm saying just the opposite, the UK site's moderators came up with their own suggestions based on general consensus, sure they weren't exactly what I'd suggested but they were an excellent way forward and I gave 100% support.

The issue they have is they never agreed ownership of the domain name, and the original collective is disrpersed. So you really haven't been remotely helpful Sal.

Ian

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 14:33
sorry Rick because I did state clearly I'm talking about regional bias not the bias of individual moderators thoughts.


I think people are rather more fickle than you think Rick, you need to think from a non US perspective, and please I'm not complaining of a regional bias rather stating there is an obvious one in the moderator team, which cannot be denied, and suggesting that might be changed in the future. It's that simple no whole page replies

Ian, no offense, but these sentences use English words and all, but they just don't make any sense. I'll take my page-long descriptions if they have logic that can be followed even when it is wrong, versus your cryptic codes that can't seem to be decoded even by you.

First you say it's not about how moderators think, it's a regional bias, and I try to explain (since you refuse to) how such a regional bias would be visible to lurkers and prospective participants, whom you identify as the principle target of these issues. Then, you say it's not a regional bias, it's an "obvious" one that cannot be denied.

Well, Ian, I'm denying it. Now, prove me wrong. Hint: You'll have to avoid using words like "obvious" and start actually having something to say.

A bias on the moderator team would be reflected in behavior, not composition. We will NOT make changes achieve any particular composition on the moderator team just so that you will like the list you see. If we did, then everyone with an ax to grind would want somebody just like them to be on the moderator team, and there is no end to that. By the same token, we have absolutely no issues with adding moderators from other parts of the world, if they have demonstrated consistency with the guidelines and principles of this forum, and have demonstrated the judgment skills needed to deal with the problems that arise.

I do not believe that Americans are incapable of understanding issues faced by UK and European participants, just because they are American. I categorically reject that notion. If that is your belief, then say so and we'll stop this now.

But I do believe it is possible for Americans to behave in a way that seems particularly American to non-Americans, even to the extent that it offends them. Those behaviors we moderators strive to avoid, so if there are any, then we need to know about them and eliminate them. We keep asking you for examples so that we'll know what those behaviors are that we can correct by whatever means. Your persistent inability to articulate those (outside the time-zone issue), and to ultimately deny them, I'll take as meaning that you don't really have any in mind.

Rick "who thinks we have time for one more round before declaring this one fully talked out" Denney

Ian David
19-Dec-2012, 14:38
For what it is worth, as a non-American, I am happy with the way this forum works. I have been a member/lurker here for a few years, although I have been more active elsewhere for reasons that have nothing to do with any failings of LFPF. I have not perceived any problems with the existing moderation team or their style of moderation.

IanG
19-Dec-2012, 14:47
Ian, no offense, but these sentences use English words and all, but they just don't make any sense. I'll take my page-long descriptions if they have logic that can be followed even when it is wrong, versus your cryptic codes that can't seem to be decoded even by you.

First you say it's not about how moderators think, it's a regional bias, and I try to explain (since you refuse to) how such a regional bias would be visible to lurkers and prospective participants, whom you identify as the principle target of these issues. Then, you say it's not a regional bias, it's an "obvious" one that cannot be denied.

Well, Ian, I'm denying it. Now, prove me wrong. Hint: You'll have to avoid using words like "obvious" and start actually having something to say.

A bias on the moderator team would be reflected in behavior, not composition. We will NOT make changes achieve any particular composition on the moderator team just so that you will like the list you see. If we did, then everyone with an ax to grind would want somebody just like them to be on the moderator team, and there is no end to that. By the same token, we have absolutely no issues with adding moderators from other parts of the world, if they have demonstrated consistency with the guidelines and principles of this forum, and have demonstrated the judgment skills needed to deal with the problems that arise.

I do not believe that Americans are incapable of understanding issues faced by UK and European participants, just because they are American. I categorically reject that notion. If that is your belief, then say so and we'll stop this now.

But I do believe it is possible for Americans to behave in a way that seems particularly American to non-Americans, even to the extent that it offends them. Those behaviors we moderators strive to avoid, so if there are any, then we need to know about them and eliminate them. We keep asking you for examples so that we'll know what those behaviors are that we can correct by whatever means. Your persistent inability to articulate those (outside the time-zone issue), and to ultimately deny them, I'll take as meaning that you don't really have any in mind.

Rick "who thinks we have time for one more round before declaring this one fully talked out" Denney


Too many words, to say nothing Rick.

How many times do I have to say bias in terms of geographic location is nothing to do with personal biases polital, artistic, whatever. It's how others percieve things, so they see only US moderators, some would be much happier to see a more International mix. Personally I'm not bothered but I think it sends a bad message having only US moderators on an International forum and that moderators from outside the US would help bring in more new members.

Ian

Pete Watkins
19-Dec-2012, 14:51
Sal,
The word is spelt humour, check the Oxford English Dictionary.
Nice to know that you're "deadly serious", Oh my gawd this is giving me problems! The tears are running down me legs, crap, I hope that they're tears.
Have I mentioned Ilford (you might find that the company is now called Harmon Technology). no? Have the moderators mentioned Harmon/Ilford, has Ian mentioned Harmon/Ilford? NO! What are you on? I would suggest that you were paid by Ilford to promote their company but you don't even understand that the company is now known as Harmon Technology. You need to know this for when you choose to slag me off next time (tha phrase "slag me off" might not be in the afore mentioned dictionary, check dialect websites, I'm sure that there would be a simple explaination there).

As I see it your priorities are:-
1/ Obtain a copy of The Oxford English Dictionary (readily available on Amazon).
2/ Discover the correct names of companies before you critisise those who have reason to boycott (you will possibly need the dictionary to understand this word, try Amazon) the company concerned.

One other thing you might need to be reminded of is that there is the letter "u" in the word colour. Check the dictionary (once you've bought it).
Best wishes,
Pete.

Sal Santamaura
19-Dec-2012, 14:56
Get it right Sal...You've still not posted anything to contradict what I wrote.


...the still active originators grew apart from the gradually less active pair that registered the domain name and host the swebsite...The latter being actual owners/funders of the venue.


...that the active took on board changes which were suggested by many of us (inc 2 others in this thread) was up to them, and it's their issues with the admins that have crippled the website...So the moderators wanted to go along with your insistent suggestions, but the actual owners/funders of the forum didn't. As owner/funders of the venue, it's their prerogative to run it as they see fit, even if that (in your words) "cripples" it. Although I'm not convinced the lower activity level there didn't result from your "poisoning the well" and a substantially smaller pool of potential participants in the UK than there are in the US.


...So you really haven't been remotely helpful Sal...Other than pointing out facts, which you've not refuted, what type of helpfulness would you have preferred I offer? Cheering on the idea of fracturing this unified global resource into regions?

The most helpful thing I can (and did) suggest was that you arrange funding for, host, purchase forum software for (or write your own) and run a UK large format photography forum. Then you can have things exactly as you like them. Moderators of your choosing. Categories to your taste. "Bias" as you prefer. Try it, you'll like it.

welly
19-Dec-2012, 14:58
As a British person living in Australia, I couldn't give a damn who the moderators are, where they're from or what colour socks they wear, as long as they do their job correctly and for the vast majority of the time I've been on this forum, they absolutely have.

Having non-US moderators would make absolutely no difference whatsoever to encouraging non-US members. How could it possibly, when new members don't even know who the moderators are? There's no disclosure on moderators and their nationality before, during or after signing up.

This has been one of the most bizarre, pointless and unnecessary threads I've read on this forum. I hope it dies soon, although I guess I'm not helping.

sanking
19-Dec-2012, 15:02
One other thing you might need to be reminded of is that there is the letter "u" in the word colour. Check the dictionary (once you've bought it).
Best wishes,
Pete.

Pete,

You are being funny, right? You do know that in the US the preferred spelling is humor and color?

Sandy

Sal Santamaura
19-Dec-2012, 15:08
...The word is spelt humour...Not in the country where this forum is based.


...Have I mentioned Ilford (you might find that the company is now called Harmon Technology)...Pete, your posts here and elsewhere frequently bash Ilford. My reference to defending this community's and Ilford's reputations was an allusion to that fact. It can't be disputed. I am an extremely satisfied paying (not paid) customer of Ilford products.

By the way, it's spelled HARMAN, not Harmon. Linguistic precision is a good thing.


...As I see it your priorities are...My priorities are supporting and protecting this community as well as assisting a fine film and paper supplier, whose products I enthusiastically use, with expanding its customer base. The latter includes negating unjustified trashing posts by those who think they ought promote boycotts.

rdenney
19-Dec-2012, 15:17
Having non-US moderators would make absolutely no difference whatsoever to encouraging non-US members. How could it possibly, when new members don't even know who the moderators are? There's no disclosure on moderators and their nationality before, during or after signing up.

No, you helped clarify my central issue from at least my last three posts (as boldfaced above by me). I'm all for finding nuggets of usefulness in even the most challenging presentations, and I thought there might be some here still undiscovered. But I think we've dug out all there is to be gotten from this topic.

So, it would seem that we have addressed the issue in full. There were a couple of nuggets that we are discussing and will take under advisement. And when the time comes to add moderators, we'll consider all possibilities no matter where they are from, as has been the case in the past.

Thank you all for your opinions. Let's consider this topic fully discussed and move on.

Rick "who'll add the 'u' in 'colour' if it really helps" Denney