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Splitting Up The 'general' Forum?


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#1 Dinny

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 02:16 PM

Following up on Wim's invitation in the 'Welcome home Dinny'-topic I would like to continue the discussion here.



Henry seems to feel that the forum tends to be something like a restricted area for a handful of people knowing each other (this apparently due to the joking between us) and I would be sorry if this is the impression we give newcomers. But I honestly don't feel that we (intended as the frequent flyers here) are giving this impression to other people just joining. Actually, I think everybody is given a warm welcome when they approach the forum. Still, I'd like a forum which I read every day to be cozy and friendly, I like the ping-pong'ing between us, even if it's sometimes (ehrm, most of the times) not very serious. The problem, of course, is that sometimes we get SO totally off track considering the title of the topic that some might find it frustrating.



Two solutions to avoid it: Forcing everybody to be deadly serious, no humour, no joking allowed, strictly business. If the topic is f.inst. "Anogia", heavy fines for whomever dare to speak about the war. Don't mention the war!!! Oops, had a sequence of Faulty Towers in my head! Erase, erase. :P

Second solution would be to create a 'corner' - separate under-forum in 'General' - allowing free speach, silly replies, racing off the track from the topic title, whatever makes you feel comfortable. Such a 'Speakers Corner' might initially have the full attention only of the frequent users, the little handfull, the dirty dozin, the not so serious members of this site. But eventually others might want to join, when they discover that we actually like newcomers with a load of humour....



Personally, I think the very friendly and humorous tone in most of our posts is the convincing factor for newcomers to join us. Apart from Wim being a little 'touchy' at times ( :D ) I think most of us are quite friendly and love to help whomever is joining this site to get information. They will surely get the information they want, and in addition, maybe also a few humorous remarks and off-track considerations.... So what?



What does our Lord and Master (i.e. Yannis) think about it?

#2 santo

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 03:03 PM

Go Girl B) :D :D

Totally agree, in fact one area you didn't mention whilst on your "soap box" is that friendships are also formed off the back of this forum, and i for one (when holidaying) will always visit the members that i know that live in Crete even if just to say hi. :D :D

I sincerely believe this website performs all it's possible functions in assistance and knowledge to any new member asking for help, perhaps the newest ones could add their thoughts as to how helpful or informative the group are, I do know that i have received pm's with thanks that are not published and in some way isn't that how we are judged
:P :D
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#3 Wim

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 03:10 PM

Ooohhhmmmfff,

I'm touched by Dinny.

Ain't gonna wash for a whole week :D

Stay in touch :P
True is that adage: "He who yields to rule by wooden heads, becomes himself a fool."

#4 Dinny

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 03:46 PM

THIS IS AN OFF-TOPIC REMARK!!! (I've warned you!!)



Wim, I still think that your suggestion to change the 'Meet in Crete" forum to 'Meat in Crete" is the prize winner for this year!



OK, OK, just wanted to throw this at Wim before he went into hiding without washing for a week! :P

I'll get back on track.... NOW



TO NEWCOMERS: Why don't you let us have YOUR opinion on how you feel the impact is when you join this site? Would be nice to know ... :D

#5 DaveW.

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 07:07 PM

Personally I was appalled at the suggestion to 'break up' the forum.
I think that we, that is the members, in the whole are an extremely responsible group of people, some of whom have become both real and virtual friends. Anyone can join in the banter which on the whole is good natured.

Some of the other sites about Crete I can only describe as being full of some very sad people who seem to delight in putting each other down and being downright rude and objectionable to each other and to general enquiries about aspects of Crete. The other day someone enquired if anyone knew about the cost of a taxi from one of the airports. What was the first response? Ring a taxi company! Very helpful to a probable first time visitor. On this site, when I enquired if anyone knew about Marathi, I received loads of helpful advise and this is what makes this site so special. The willingness to share experiences, without sarcasm, helps to make this site what it is.

Yes, I believe that we are a community on this site, and a responsible one at that. We may not agree with everything that is posted but we appear to respond in a responsible manner.
I believe that if we broke up the forum into seperate sections that it would make it even more insular and alienate new comers to an unacceptable degree.

Let us carry on as responsible people who share a common 'hiraeth' (love/longing) of Crete. OK we may have a 'muppet' every now and again but they usually move on in a short while.
Right, that is me off my soap-box...someone else can carry on now.............................................., :P :D
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#6 Pam

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 07:09 PM

Well, I'm not a total newcomer, started viewing the posts last November and finally registered in February. I spent a bit of time viewing posts from that time to remind myself of why I liked it then -

The variety of posts many asking about facilities in various resorts, (honeymoons seem to be a recurring theme), others about current issues - proposed oil terminals, containerbase in Timbaki (that's gone quiet recently, must be an update shortly?), happy Christmas etc. I actually like the variety of posts and the good-humoured fun that the memebers have.

A couple of points struck me - some people who were active have disappeared (Yorgos, Mavrolio, Birgit, Nick, to name a few), who did post entertaining and constructive topics and replies - I wonder what happened to them.

It does seem that the community has reduced to a smaller group of regular posters in recent weeks, although there is a regular flow of new members.

So, like Dinny - a plea to newcomers - tell us what you like or don't like, does it seem too cliquey, are you afraid to post (Iknow I was a bit nervous at first). Also there have been a few recent new topics by newcomers, with no responses, which must put people off. Perhaps the regular members should make a point of responding to new members even if it is just to say welcome.

Finally, I don't think we need to split up the General heading, my personal opinion is that it is fine as it is. When the Crete Gazette fnally comes back on-line (hint, Yannis), I promise to contribute to that forum, though.

Pam

#7 Kritsa Yvonne

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Posted 18 July 2006 - 11:53 PM

There is that old adage - You can please some of the people some of the time but you can't please all of the people any of the time - it certainly seems to apply here.

Sometimes I laugh out loud, sometimes I cringe, sometimes i have time and/or interest to post and sometimes I don't BUT this is the only Cretan website I bother with as all the others just don't "do it" for me. I expect there are other people who visit Explore Crete for a while and then decide it is not for them as they find another site more to their liking.

Yannis is quite innovative with the different pages and styles of information some technology driven and some to develop wider interest. As a result I think this is a great site even without the forum and blogs - they just make it more fun/interesting.

I probably learnt more about Crete from this site and the contributors that any other resource and I frequently recommend it to other people. So, for me it is great and the less "rules" the better - there is enough to cope with in other aspects of life and this is part of my escapism!

Yvonne
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#8 harribobs

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Posted 19 July 2006 - 12:04 AM

my thoughts...for what they are worth ( about 2d in old money)

i don't consider myself a regular here anymore, having just come back to contact a member and got drawn into the chat

while i was a regular here, i never left a posting unanswered even if i didn't have THE answer.. i'm pretty sure the forum was much more active then

on the plakias forum, we use the same method and we welcome new members on forum and contact them thru pms as well.. ( just looking at the plak forum stats today...we had 27 posts in the last 24 hours)

a good forum is driven by it's senior members, chat is great and can provide lots of information and laughs but i think you should be pushing it along, providing information, posting about places, pictures, inviting newcomers to post


there you go! :P
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#9 Minotaurus

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Posted 19 July 2006 - 07:22 AM

It is good as it is now. A limitation to the length of a message should sometimes very good. Also a automatic deletion of enpty lines.
Xerete

#10 Wim

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Posted 19 July 2006 - 12:56 PM

Hi all,

When I posted my remarks in the "Coming Home" topic (which you all read) it was merely to help the poor novice readers who enter this site to find information about Crete and/or read the existing info offered in the forum topics.

The first line of information can be found underneath the tabs and in the search bar.
The second line of info is the forum with it's topics. Here you can find more or less 800 topics (General) with a shattered info. Reading all this info is as I called it a "sysiphus(sisyphus) labor. Hence visitors start duplicating questions and results. Now I don't mind, but one must be of the more "chatting" type to answer all those again. Let alone if the answer could easily be found in the first line help or on the internet.

What I mean to say is:
If we want to offer information it must be; clear, plain, explicit, lucid, obvious and evident. I think we can arrange this by sub dividing these topics into a quantity of headers that cover the contents. That's all.

It has nothing to do with the lengths of articles etc. It's about making a comprehensive data base for our visitors who want to explore the forum.

Next to this info we can also (of course) have the members forum where we can "all" fool around.
Call it e.g. "The Fools Forum :P " 1 member has already applied...

Be intuitive :D
True is that adage: "He who yields to rule by wooden heads, becomes himself a fool."

#11 Pam

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Posted 19 July 2006 - 03:16 PM

Well, I don't have very strong feelings about whether the general forum should be split up, but it must be recognised that this would be more work for Yannis, so we really need his views.

Also, so far we have had no newcomers contributing to the discussion so come on - all you newcomers, don't be shy - give us at least a one-liner on what you want to see on the forum.

#12 Birgit

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Posted 19 July 2006 - 09:15 PM

First to Pam: I have not disappeared, don't worry, I read the forum EVERY day, but thanks for your thoughts. I might not post as often as others, but I have other "duties" here at the site, such as maintaining the Danish part of explorecrete.com.
Besides, I post an answer if I feel I have a good answer, if not I leave the answering to others who might know more about it than I do.

And back to the subject about splitting up the forum: Why do that? Many of the regulars also have a blog - why not leave all the personal remarks there and put a small note on the thread that you have answered on hers or his blog?

Just a suggestion - and no, I haven't got a blog of my own - I have an entire section of my own :P

Greetings from Denmark
Birgit
(Coming to Crete August 6th .......)

#13 yannis_s

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 01:19 PM

Due to the problems we have experienced with attacks from hackers recently, a new forum is being prepared for Explorecrete. The cost will be significant but it will solve the security problems. We will try to move the old threads from one forum to the other, but this is a complicated procedure and the results cannot be guaranteed.

As for splitting the GENERAL forum, I don't see how this will help. My opinion is that it will make things more complicated for new members and at the end there will be more poorly-functioning subforums. If you have a specific suggestion though, I am open to discuss it with you. Please contat me directly by email, instead of starting a new discussion here.

What I am not happy with, is the REVIEWS sub-forum which has very few topics. I don't understand how it is possible with so many experienced travellers of Crete, to have so few reviews. Why are you reluctant to share your experiences with the other members of the site? I think most people who will travel to Crete, will be very interested to read your suggestions about hotels, restaurants and other types of businesses in Crete. The poor performance of this subforum has made me to decide to discontinue it in the future and return to a more "conventional" way of submitting reviews. Hopefully it will make it easier for visitors of the site to add their reviews.

Finally, I want to say a big "thank you" to all of you who help to keep this forum lively and answer the questions of the new members. The Blogs section is also doing great, as well as the Photoalbums section. These sections will also be altered in the near future and we will do our best to create a functional, friendly and secure system.
Yannis Samatas
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#14 DaveW.

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 01:34 PM

Yannis,

I can't answer for others but my reasons for not placing any reviews are purely self centred and selfish.
I don't want to share places that I have fond experiences of with the 'fish 'n chip' brigade who now seem to be holidaying on the island. I don't want to tell people of a small taverna where I can sit for an evening and watch the world go by without any of the intrusion of loud, drunken, unruly folk who do not know how to behave in a foreign land. I am sorry if I am being selfish but if I want to keep my part of Crete as it is, then I will. If folk want to know about restuarants/taverns then go and explore the real Crete, move away from the tourist 'full English breakfast' and 'English beers sold here' mentality. :D

Oh hell, I'm rambling now. :D

You can tell I've had a hard morning in work and it is time to go back. Anyway from numero uno selfish person....have a nice day, yo all. :D :D :P B)

Yo ho, yo ho, it's off to work I go..............................................................................
.. :D

P.S. I've just read this and it sounds as though I am tarring everyone with the same brush, but I think you know what I'm trying to say.
If you look like your passport picture....you probably need the holiday!

#15 Tinks

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 01:56 PM

I know exactly what DaveW means.

A colleague of mine just went off to spend a fortnight in Malia. I asked him if he planned to visit any historic sites, or explore in the mountains.

No, his reply was... (in his words, not mine)

"I'm not going for that sort of crap, I'm gonna spend the entire time totally wasted in the English bars and chase after hot birds, innit..."

Classy.... :P
Curiouser and curiouser.....

#16 santo

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Posted 20 July 2006 - 02:13 PM

:D :D B) Why do i feel like i've been told off.......................... I'm a bit like DaveW only younger ha,ha,ha,ha,ha, :D

nah seriously I haven't put any recent reviews because I forget too !!!! and also because I don't really want to visit Crete with a notepad for reference involving everywhere and everything i did.

perhaps i'm not contributing enough to the site for some people ??, perhaps i'm contributing too much in the wrong areas all i know is, i say something when i feel the need or if someone asks ??? is that enough only others can say.

said my bit now. :P :D
Santo

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#17 Lala

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Posted 22 July 2006 - 08:01 PM

I have to confess that I have only skimmed the forum to get the gist of what this is all about, so I might have the wrong end of the stick, and if there is an end with pooh on it, that is the end sods law gives me.
My personal view is that the forum is already divided up into enough sections.

#18 harribobs

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Posted 22 July 2006 - 11:34 PM

eh up Lala :rolleyes:

not heard from you for ages

how you doing chuck?
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#19 bu67

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 03:17 PM

I like the General Forum and do not feel it needs to be split up. I really enjoy the "conversations" and hope to meet up with all of you on future trips to Crete.

Jeff
Texas
:rolleyes:

#20 Dinny

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 04:20 PM

Thanks, Jeff! It's good to hear we're not that 'scaring' after all! :rolleyes: Looking forward to meeting you whenever you and Pat decide to visit the South.