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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Making a better online Flatpicking community.


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.flatpickerhangout.com/archive/16915

slowhand - Posted - 09/16/2010:  12:32:13


This post was inspired by something DaddyJ said in one of the innumerable threads about whether or not the scope of this website should be expanded to encompass all acoustic guitar styles:

quote:
Originally posted by DaddyJ
I’m also a little perplexed as to why the conversation isn’t, “How can we make this a better, more vibrant flatpicking community?” instead of, “Hey! Let’s shift the focus away from flatpicking!” There’s this automatic assumption that flatpicking is the problem. Maybe it’s not the problem.



So, for those who want to keep this a flatpick-centric website, let's have that conversation.

Assuming that Eric ultimately decides to keep this site focused on flatpicking (which I think is unlikely, but let's assume it anyway) what could be done here to attract more flatpickers and generate more activity on the site?

Here are my suggestions:

1. Moderate the content postings (videos and MP3s) and remove the ones that don't contain at least some flatpicking. The ones that are already here could be grandfathered in, and stay.

2. Put a list of the 5 most recent MP3s on the front page. Don't make people have to find the "Newest Additions" page to find them.

3. Put a "Newest Blog Posts" section on the front page for member's blogs posts, similar to the "Latest Forum Topics" section. Perhaps it could replace the News Blog section, which rarely changes.

5. Moderate the forum posts to keep off-topic threads in the "Off-Topic" forum section.

6. Don't show threads in the "Off-topic" section in the "Latest Forum Topics" list on the front page.

7. Have a list of the most recent comments posted on the front page, excluding those in the "Off-Topic" section. This is great for getting a lot of people involved in discussions.

It only stands to reason, that flatpickers will be drawn to a flatpicking website. But for the most part, this site has been flatpicking-centric in name only. All kinds of non-flatpicking music has been posted here, and nobody complained, but when nobody paid special attention to it a lot of the people who posted started to agitate to change the site. And in the meantime, any flatpickers that happened by would see a lot of non-flatpicking content and a lot of arguing. Not really that enticing to a flatpicker, IMO.

So to sum up, I think this site should totally, unapologetically, devoted to flatpicking, to the express exclusion of everything else. It was the good nature and tolerance of the flatpickers toward those who never had any interest in flatpicking that created the situation we're now in. It was a case of the bad driving out the good, and I think that to make this into the single most vibrant online flatpicking community, that trend will have to be reversed.

Redstone - Posted - 09/16/2010:  13:08:41


You make a good point Sir!

Laurence Diehl - Posted - 09/16/2010:  13:51:42


Those are some constructive suggestions, but if you are going to characterize flatpickers as GODS and non-flatpickers as 'whiney crybabies' then you are going to derail the discussion. The problem is NOT that flatpickers started out on the site, then went to sleep when they saw that non-flatpickers - whiney ones - were showing up. Or if that is true, then it's crazy. I am a flatpicker myself, so I guess that puts me in the God category (watch this get locked for religious content). As I said before, I would be happy for this to stay with the flatpicker name - but adding some forums for other styles - IF we can stir things up a bit more, get some discussions going, post some files, comment etc.
Laurence

ccravens - Posted - 09/16/2010:  13:56:34


I think it would be a good idea to make this a strictly flatpicking site. I thought that's what I joined.

This approach would be a true "sink or swim" for a true Flatpicker Hangout. And end the endless strife of people trying to change the site to fit their desires. One member even posted Rock 'n Roll videos a while back! (Thanks Dixie!)

I like to sing, play fiddle, mando and other stuff, but I wouldn't have the audacity to come on a "Flatpicker" hangout and post all that stuff. Instead I've taken it upon myself to try & learn about flatpicking and fit it in with the concept. And I've found a bunch of really nice, supportive people who love flatpicking and are knowledgeable about it and other subjects. Maybe they don't jump up and down and give ten smiley faces to everyone who posts, but I'd rather have honesty than sugary superficiality anyway.

And I've come to really like flatpicking in the process, something I wasn't even doing when I joined. Maybe slowhand's suggested changes would help the current situation. I'd sure be willing to try.

slowhand - Posted - 09/16/2010:  14:30:08


quote:
Originally posted by Laurence Diehl

Those are some constructive suggestions, but if you are going to characterize flatpickers as GODS and non-flatpickers as 'whiney crybabies' then you are going to derail the discussion. The problem is NOT that flatpickers started out on the site, then went to sleep when they saw that non-flatpickers - whiney ones - were showing up. Or if that is true, then it's crazy. I am a flatpicker myself, so I guess that puts me in the God category (watch this get locked for religious content). As I said before, I would be happy for this to stay with the flatpicker name - but adding some forums for other styles - IF we can stir things up a bit more, get some discussions going, post some files, comment etc.
Laurence



Please don't put words in my mouth, Laurence. I never characterized flatpickers as gods, nor did I characterize non-flatpickers as whiney crybabies. I only applied that label to a handful of individuals who have whined and cried incessantly.

Laurence Diehl - Posted - 09/16/2010:  14:59:44


Okay. Well, I've enjoyed the discussion, but I think I've run out of things to say so I'm signing off. Anyway, I need to go play my guitar...
Laurence

DaddyJ - Posted - 09/16/2010:  15:40:21


I'd be happy with either scenario posted above. Strictly flatpicking, or the compromise of adding a few subforums for other styles while keeping the main focus of the site on flatpicking. What I object to is changing the identity of the site away from flatpicking and making it another generic acoustic guitar forum.

I don't have anything against other styles. In fact, I could probably discuss blues, jazz, folk, or rock with equal or more knowledge because those are all styles I've been familiar with and, in some cases, passionate about longer than flatpicking. But I joined this site because flatpicking is primarily what I'm into these days and this is a flatpicking site. The fact is there just isn't a great online flatpicking forum out there that I've found that's organized or set up as well as this one. And there needs to be because flatpicking deserves it.

Stringnut - Posted - 09/16/2010:  18:41:00


Wow, "crybabies and GODs". I have no idea where that came from. I didn't get that at all from Slowhand's post.

Slowhand, you make a great point and you made it in a sane, sensible and unoffensive manner. I really like your suggestions, especially the one about keeping the off subject thread off of the front page. I've been to acoustic in general sites before and I get overwhelmed by all the junk. I have to really struggle and waste a lot of time wading through a bunch of threads before I can find something specific to what I am looking for in a discussion. Lot's of generality is not necessarily a good thing. I would love to see less bickering and baiting going on and more focus on expanding "flatpicking" as an interest we all have in common. I always know what I'm looking for when I come here. I'd like to just sit down on the front porch and trade a few tunes.

Dan

erikrolfsen - Posted - 09/16/2010:  22:30:55


The internet is all about niches, and flatpicking is a niche. Broadening the scope of the site to include other styles would only water it down. There are already sites out there devoted to other styles, and they do what they do well. I doubt any section of Flatpicker Hangout devoted to fingerstyle blues would top the best existing fingerstyle blues site, so why have it at all? The other one's only a bookmark away.

Do one specific thing, do it the best, and you'll always have an audience. Just my opinion.

Erik.

Laurence Diehl - Posted - 09/17/2010:  08:17:01


quote:
Originally posted by Stringnut

Wow, "crybabies and GODs". I have no idea where that came from. I didn't get that at all from Slowhand's post.

Slowhand, you make a great point and you made it in a sane, sensible and unoffensive manner. I really like your suggestions, especially the one about keeping the off subject thread off of the front page. I've been to acoustic in general sites before and I get overwhelmed by all the junk. I have to really struggle and waste a lot of time wading through a bunch of threads before I can find something specific to what I am looking for in a discussion. Lot's of generality is not necessarily a good thing. I would love to see less bickering and baiting going on and more focus on expanding "flatpicking" as an interest we all have in common. I always know what I'm looking for when I come here. I'd like to just sit down on the front porch and trade a few tunes.

Dan


Well, maybe you're just not paying attention. I am quoting directly here from slowhands post on page 8 of this other topic:
flatpickerhangout.com/topic/8942/8
quote...
So I've got nothing to lose by saying a few parting words to the self-centered non-flatpicking crybabies whose unrelenting efforts made it happen.
...end quote
Oh, yeah - I made up the GODS part. But in the end, who really cares?
Okay, now I'm done
Bye

slowhand - Posted - 09/17/2010:  08:32:05


quote:
Originally posted by Laurence Diehl

Well, maybe you're just not paying attention. I am quoting directly here from slowhands post on page 8 of this other topic:
flatpickerhangout.com/topic/8942/8
quote...
So I've got nothing to lose by saying a few parting words to the self-centered non-flatpicking crybabies whose unrelenting efforts made it happen.
...end quote



If anyone reads that quote in context, they'll see I was not implying that being a non-flatpicker makes one a crybaby. The specific crybabies I was referring to happen to be non-flatpickers. Or to borrow DaddyJ's analogy, they're the people who want to eat Italian food, so they go to a Chinese restaurant and complain about the menu.

rookie_davis - Posted - 09/17/2010:  09:26:54


I don't see a problem with this site being strictly confined to flatpicking. No offense to other styles and players, but what's stopping them from starting a fingerpicker hangout, etc. etc.

Stringnut - Posted - 09/17/2010:  17:17:42


quote:
Well, maybe you're just not paying attention. I am quoting directly here from slowhands post on page 8 of this other topic:
flatpickerhangout.com/topic/8942/8


Oh, I was paying attention alright. I was paying attention to this thread. If you want everyone to understand where you are coming from you need to quote your source at the time you post. That would be most helpful in the future.

quote:
Oh, yeah - I made up the GODS part. But in the end, who really cares?


I care. You need to let go of your anger Larry and re-read what Slowhand said in this thread at the begining. Pretend you don't remember anything that was said in the other threads and really listen to what he is saying. When somebody hands you a peace offering, you need to recognize it.

So, let's clean up our attitudes and get back to guitars and music.

jazzrambler - Posted - 09/18/2010:  05:51:41


Okay, I'm weighing in on the subject, not the Gods v. Whiners controversy.
Back in 1997 I got my first computer. I did an internet search for Django Reinhardt and found a couple hundred like minded souls on a Yahoo group. I made some real friends, good contacts and learned an @ss load over the next few years. I traveled internationally with some of these guys. It was great.

There are about a godzillion guitar related sites out there encompassing every niche imaginable.

I came to this one to learn more about flatpicking. To the proprietor's and the members' credit, it worked.
If I decide to learn about lawn darts, necromancy or join a Lindsay Lohan fan club, I'm sure I can find those forums, too.
The same goes for bottleneck slide, clawhammer banjo and concertina. Please keep this site limited to guitar, played with a pick, I'm not too particular about what tunes or genres. If you want to play 'Ace of Spades' in the style, fine. If you want to play 'Red Haired Boy' on the pennywhistle, no.
There's my take on it.

Tom Smith - Posted - 09/18/2010:  06:48:48


quote:
Originally posted by jazzrambler

Okay, I'm weighing in on the subject, not the Gods v. Whiners controversy.
Back in 1997 I got my first computer. I did an internet search for Django Reinhardt and found a couple hundred like minded souls on a Yahoo group. I made some real friends, good contacts and learned an @ss load over the next few years. I traveled internationally with some of these guys. It was great.

There are about a godzillion guitar related sites out there encompassing every niche imaginable.

I came to this one to learn more about flatpicking. To the proprietor's and the members' credit, it worked.
If I decide to learn about lawn darts, necromancy or join a Lindsay Lohan fan club, I'm sure I can find those forums, too.
The same goes for bottleneck slide, clawhammer banjo and concertina. Please keep this site limited to guitar, played with a pick, I'm not too particular about what tunes or genres. If you want to play 'Ace of Spades' in the style, fine. If you want to play 'Red Haired Boy' on the pennywhistle, no.
There's my take on it.



Straightforward, non-offensive, & true. Couldn't have said it better.

skyraider50 - Posted - 09/18/2010:  06:57:57


quote:
Originally posted by jazzrambler

Okay, I'm weighing in on the subject, not the Gods v. Whiners controversy.
Back in 1997 I got my first computer. I did an internet search for Django Reinhardt and found a couple hundred like minded souls on a Yahoo group. I made some real friends, good contacts and learned an @ss load over the next few years. I traveled internationally with some of these guys. It was great.

There are about a godzillion guitar related sites out there encompassing every niche imaginable.

I came to this one to learn more about flatpicking. To the proprietor's and the members' credit, it worked.
If I decide to learn about lawn darts, necromancy or join a Lindsay Lohan fan club, I'm sure I can find those forums, too.
The same goes for bottleneck slide, clawhammer banjo and concertina. Please keep this site limited to guitar, played with a pick, I'm not too particular about what tunes or genres. If you want to play 'Ace of Spades' in the style, fine. If you want to play 'Red Haired Boy' on the pennywhistle, no.
There's my take on it.



YO'.......


Edited by - skyraider50 on 09/18/2010 06:58:46

cwsnow - Posted - 09/18/2010:  11:09:25


OK, so sometimes I hold the pick between my thumb and first finger and pluck a string or two with my middle and ring finger, referred to in some circles as "chicken picken". Is it OK for me to be here or do I need to go somewhere else?? (I wouldn't want to be a crybaby) (I've never heard a chicken play guitar anyway)

SLKmartin - Posted - 09/18/2010:  12:25:43


Guitar Gods, Oh My. How about" Guitar Gods hang out" .......................................Steve

flash of the gap - Posted - 09/19/2010:  08:10:16


quote:
Originally posted by SLKmartin

Guitar Gods, Oh My. How about" Guitar Gods hang out" .......................................Steve



steve j. - Posted - 09/20/2010:  07:20:05


quote:
Originally posted by cwsnow

OK, so sometimes I hold the pick between my thumb and first finger and pluck a string or two with my middle and ring finger, referred to in some circles as "chicken picken". Is it OK for me to be here or do I need to go somewhere else?? (I wouldn't want to be a crybaby) (I've never heard a chicken play guitar anyway)



No you must leave immediately!!! LOL I loves me some chicken pickin, stay and teach me some.
Steve

Stringnut - Posted - 09/20/2010:  13:01:42


Well said Jazzrambler.

SLKmartin - Posted - 04/06/2011:  19:27:20



Well its decided then, the fiddle tune wins just dont post a fiddle mp3.       



Edited by - SLKmartin on 04/07/2011 07:38:50

AllenShadd - Posted - 09/29/2011:  11:38:23



quote:


Originally posted by erikrolfsen



The internet is all about niches, and flatpicking is a niche. Broadening the scope of the site to include other styles would only water it down. There are already sites out there devoted to other styles, and they do what they do well. I doubt any section of Flatpicker Hangout devoted to fingerstyle blues would top the best existing fingerstyle blues site, so why have it at all? The other one's only a bookmark away.



Do one specific thing, do it the best, and you'll always have an audience. Just my opinion.



Erik.






Bravo! Couldn't have said it better! Flatpicking is a niche, and so a forum dedicated to it is likely not going to be as active as some other styles or genres, and I'm ok with that. I appreciate having a place on the web for it, when I do get the chance to hang out here a little bit. If ti isn't active enough for ones personal taste, there are plenty of sites with more activity, styles, etc, no need to feel captive here. It's kind of like the analogy of someone moving near and interstate then complaining about the noise.


 


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