Important Request: Your input needed regarding the "Newbie Forum"

Discussion in 'Woodturning Discussion Forum' started by Bill Boehme, Oct 23, 2017.

?

What should be done with the Newbie forum?

Poll closed Oct 31, 2017.
  1. Leave it as it currently is

    5 vote(s)
    10.9%
  2. Move all of the Newbie Forum threads to the "main" Woodturning Discussion Forum"

    36 vote(s)
    78.3%
  3. No opinion (a self contradiction since "no opinion" constitutes an opinion)

    5 vote(s)
    10.9%
  1. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    8,150
    Location:
    Dalworthington Gardens, TX
    Home Page:
    The Newbie Forum was created in April 2009 following the requests of a number of new turners and subsequent discussions about its purpose and goals. Here is a link to the sticky thread that summarizes the purposes of the forum.

    Based on my own feelings and numerous comments from others, both beginners and long time turners, I feel that the existence of a separate Newbie Forum often sends a negative or confusing message to forum users, both new and long time members. At the worst, I'm concerned about the implied message telling beginners that their place is in the kiddie corner and they're not ready to play with the adults. It's also is confusing to beginners who don't know whether or not a question should be asked in the Newbie forum. Also, I haven't seen much evidence that the original intent of the forum has actually occurred.

    I wouldn't want there to be the existence of even the slightest hint of second class status to any forum member and that is what has been bothering me about having a designated separate place for beginners. Of course, it's obvious that I'm only hearing from those wanting change. People aren't going to contact me and say, "I'm happy with the status quo and don't change anything" if they don't know that a change is being considered. So this is the time for everybody to make their preference known on this question. Vote in the poll and post your opinion in this thread. I'm anxiously awaiting what you have to say.

    (As a separate unrelated matter, I am planning to create an Introductions Forum, but I'm still working on the details.)
     
  2. Fadi Zeidan

    Fadi Zeidan

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2016
    Messages:
    187
    When I first joined the forum, I thought I should only post in the newbie forum because that is what it is called and was inviting to ask very basic questions. Now I post in the newbie section because I feel my questions are basic and advanced turning topics can be discussed in the regular forum. Would I have not posted if it wasn’t there? I still would have but maybe hesitated at first.

    If you do remove it, maybe have a section or a pinned thread for “New Members Intoductions”
     
  3. Gary Beasley

    Gary Beasley

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2017
    Messages:
    34
    Location:
    Marietta, Georgia
    Maybe the perception of the forum would be better if it were renamed Basic Questions or something along those lines. Either way would be fine by me.
     
    Paul Lajoie likes this.
  4. john lucas

    john lucas

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2004
    Messages:
    5,832
    Location:
    Cookeville TN USA
    I agree with Gary and Bill. I also thought it gave a negative connotation to the questions. Perhaps a new name is all that's needed.
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.
  5. Paul M. Kaplowitz

    Paul M. Kaplowitz

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    161
    I think it is unnecessary. I don't think I have ever gone to that category. There are not that many postings, and the new turners questions are the most interesting. A great many of the main postings appear to be from members who have nothing better to do than post nonsense.
     
    Andy Chen and William Rogers like this.
  6. William Rogers

    William Rogers

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Messages:
    102
    Location:
    Haubstadt, Indiana
    When I first joined this fourm my first impression was that the Newbie fourm was the fourm I should use as other than pens I didn't have any experience with bowl, platters, etc., however what I wanted was help from the experienced turners. I felt the experienced turners were not even going to look or provide help. It did give me the impression of a tier level. I now realize this is not the case being a member for a short time, but still wonder where I should post some questions. In 2009 the reason may have been valid for that time, but I really don't see much difference in the two fourm at this time. It was intimidating to me initially and also thought I shouldn't post a reply in the main fourm even though I had experience with the subject matter. I just don't see the need for it as far as posting.
     
    Bill Boehme and Andy Chen like this.
  7. Clifton C

    Clifton C

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Messages:
    193
    Location:
    Hampton Roads Virginia
    When I visit the Forum, I click on the "New Posts" link and get all the new posts from all the sub forums, and usually read them all. Our Woodcraft store advertises a "Woodturning 101" class, it is for beginners, but also for folks who want to brush up on their skills, unlearn bad habits and relearn good ones. But the perception is, it's 101. For the older (?) folks, the reaction is I'm xx years old, I'm not taking a 101 class. Short sited, maybe, but it's the feedback I get from my unscientific polls from club members and folks who eventually decide to take the class. I don't think it's just semantics, I think perception has a lot to do with it. I like the "Newbie forum" I think it needs a name change. Bill, too your statement,
    I just went to the first page of the Newbie forum and see all valid questions, some may not have been asked if the poster had thought they are too basic for the main forum. Would it be possible to add a forth option to your poll? That would be "Rename the Newbie forum". So what would be a new name? How about,
    Turning questions answered for free (valid answers 5¢)... Well, maybe we should ask the members for help on that. My vote is for keeping the forum, but with a name change.
    Bill, thanks for all the "behind the scene" work that you do.
    c
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.
  8. Doug Rasmussen

    Doug Rasmussen

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2015
    Messages:
    123
    Location:
    Seattle
    As to this forum in general (the main forum), the thing that's puzzled me most about it is the overall lack of participation.

    I look at two woodturning forums, this one and Sawmill Creek. Just now I counted the recent (last) postings of today and yesterday, five here and nine at the other forum. Of course, the count is variable by day, but never having counted before it still does seem reasonable the ratio might be accurate. The other forum consistently appears to have more daily postings.

    Any ideas why more turners don't participate here? At first glance you'd think this would be the place "everyone" would post since it's sponsored by the AAW. (I don't participate more because my interests are more in automated, CNC, turning.)
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.
  9. Grant Wilkinson

    Grant Wilkinson

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Messages:
    131
    By the standards of most of the people posting in the main forum, I am a newbie. Perhaps not so much in terms of the years that I have been turning, but certainly in the amount of turning that I have done. That said, I would not hesitate to post a question in the main forum, since, from my perspective, that is likely where the members who can answer my question will see it.
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.
  10. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    8,150
    Location:
    Dalworthington Gardens, TX
    Home Page:
    You provided part of the answer to your question. :D There was a very long thread several months ago that discussed this same question. Click HERE to read it. (short version is that it is a question without an answer). The thread also has comments about the Newbie forum.

    We could also ask why such a small percentage of woodturners are AAW members. The reasons are as varied as there are people who get involved in woodturning.

    But, anyway, this is drifting off a bit and right now I would like to keep this train on the tracks as much as possible. I'm also wanting to stay out of the discussion at this point because I don't want to steer the results one way or the other.[/QUOTE]
     
  11. odie

    odie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2006
    Messages:
    4,432
    Location:
    Deep in the woods
    Well, you are in control, Bill.....:)

    Why not merge the two forums, and see what happens? (Looks like that's where you're taking this, anyway.)

    I've been posting in both the newbie and main forums. Some subjects in the newbie forum tend to stay around longer. These might get responses that they probably wouldn't have, because they're still on page 1.There is somewhat of an advantage to that. Threads that "drop off the cliff" to page 2 don't seem to get very much traffic, and they die.

    My guess is threads that get revived from the back pages, usually do so as the result of a search, and not casual reading habits.......

    -----odie-----
     
    Lamar Wright likes this.
  12. Tim Leiter

    Tim Leiter

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2016
    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Central Michigan
    I have never visited the Newbie forum because I didn't see a need for me to do so....... I just looked at the forum and the questions seem the same type of questions that are on this main forum. I don't see a need for the Newbie forum myself. In my opinion it isn't needed at all. Now I'll have to go back to that forum to check them out, I think those questions should have been on the main forum, this one. Now I will have to go back and forth to read both...........time after time, just don't see the need for both
    Tim.
     
    Lamar Wright and Bill Boehme like this.
  13. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    8,150
    Location:
    Dalworthington Gardens, TX
    Home Page:
    The answer to your "Why not"question is that the merger is irreversible AFAIK.
     
  14. odie

    odie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2006
    Messages:
    4,432
    Location:
    Deep in the woods
    I see......I guess you could always re-start the newbie forum from scratch......

    The purpose, I suppose, is to ultimately inspire new and more forum participation.....is that correct?

    If the two forums were merged, then the subject matter on the first page will be reduced by half. That, in itself, may result in less participation......simply because there will be less information on the first page to generate interest. Whether the two forums are merged, or not, it's possible that interest could be increased, by simply having more subject matter on the first page. Is it possible to squeeze more threads into the first page?.....either smaller space taken up by the individual threads, or maybe having more than one column.

    -----odie-----
     
  15. Regis Galbach

    Regis Galbach

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2017
    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Mount Juliet, TN
    I have been a user of the Newbie forum. I think the concept is great because when I ask there, I don't have to explain that I just got my lathe x months ago. Everyone knows I'm a beginner and my questions are reletively simple. The title doesn't bother me but could change as long as the new turner concept remains.
    I've been learning a lot here. Thanks
    Regis
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.
  16. RichColvin

    RichColvin

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2016
    Messages:
    130
    Location:
    Dublin, OH
    Doug,

    Do you do ornamental turning ?

    Rich
     
  17. RichColvin

    RichColvin

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2016
    Messages:
    130
    Location:
    Dublin, OH
    Bill,

    I'd vote to merge them. We all have "newbie" questions from time to time, and I would doubt any of us is an expert in all the stuff we'd like to pursue / play with.

    And further, I have seen that no question is treated as stupid. What I think is most critical is to censor those responses that do so.

    Rich
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.
  18. Leo Van Der Loo

    Leo Van Der Loo

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2016
    Messages:
    203
    Location:
    Rainy River District Ontario Canada
    I am in the “rename” it quorum, rather than use the “Newbie” something like “Turning questions answers” would feel less denigrating (not the right word) but it gives that feeling of for the dummies maybe ??
     
    Bill Boehme, Lamar Wright and odie like this.
  19. Jesse Tutterrow

    Jesse Tutterrow

    Joined:
    May 5, 2017
    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Saint Louis, Missouri, USA
    I agree with Regis.

    A forum, by any name, where people who answer questions know and understand that the person asking is a beginner is good. My only question is when does someone graduate from "beginner / newbie" to "advanced"?

    If we merge the two forums then I would encourage some method of marking the question as "beginner", "intermediate", or "advanced" so others can filter the questions into whatever level they wish to respond to.
     
    Regis Galbach, odie and Bill Boehme like this.
  20. Tom Albrecht

    Tom Albrecht

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2014
    Messages:
    412
    Location:
    Midwest USA
    I have long been an advocate of doing away with the "Newbie" name/ forum.

    How long does the vote last?
     
    Bill Boehme likes this.

Share This Page