Good morning everyone,
Yung here. Hope you're all having somewhat of a good week.
I've been keeping a close eye on a number of threads started in the past few days and rightfully so.
As I said from the very beginning, my role here is to handle the day-to-day ops of this site from a tech standpoint and to lend my experience in keeping the peace here when the situation calls for it. I have zero experience in terms of owning a dog at a level that most of you are on so you have probably never seen me post in any threads related to discussions about dogs. This will come in handy later on.
There has been so much written back and forth in the past 48 hours, much of it voicing dissatisfaction of how things are done here and how people are treated.
I wanted to address that in the best manner I can. Bear with me. This is going to be long. Also, if you can't handle a post that isn't sugarcoated, STOP READING NOW
RESPECT and Behaviour
I have been around online communities and offline communities (ha) long enough to have learned a few things. Every community has it's own uniqueness and similarities in values, rules, guidelines and what is or is not acceptable.
I think some of the hurt expressed in the past few days stems from a misunderstanding or misconception of how the community operates here.
One thing I have always known is that people will be protective of what they are passionate about. It can be GSDs, it can be photography (for me), it can be food, it can be fitness and health (like me again) -- pretty much anything.
The very reason why many of you congregate here is because you are passionate about animals, dogs and more specifically, German Shepherds. Make no illusions about this -- there will be and are users on this site who are VERY passionate about their GSD and they make no bones about it.
10 years ago, if I came on this site or a site like this, I would have probably had my arse reamed and handed back to me. I would have not liked it and probably cried foul about it to anyone who would hear. Along the way, something called maturity creeped into my life and I began to understand why some people behave in the manner they do -- it is because they are passionate.
My own immaturity blinded me from seeing that and in all honesty, I missed out on many opportunities to connect with people who I could have been life long friends, who could have supported me in bad times and who I could have gained a tremendous wealth of information from (this was in the in photography and health and fitness circles).
My own immaturity would not allow me to see that others were trying to help me with the very honest feedback I was asking for in because of that, I took offense to it and one thing lead to another.
A whole world of difference maturity makes. Some have it. Some don't. All of us need more of it.
At the same time, this does not give passionate users a blank cheque (ha, notice how I spelled "check" the Canadian way?
) to ream out users who are not as passionate, experienced or knowledgeable as you are. It really is a two way street.
For me, I've always operated under this premise: If no one asks for my input, I won't give it. But if someone does ask for my input, I'm going to give it and there's no sugarcoating it baby.
So whether you are a new user or a long standing member, I would advise that you refrain from asking questions in the PUBLIC forums IF (and that's a big IF) you can't handle the truth (thank you Jack).
Instead, why not browse around and get a feel for some of the knowledgeable people around here and perhaps, begin a dialogue with said people in PRIVATE (i.e. email or private messages)? I started doing this a while back ago and I still do this now. I think many of you can attest to my preference for keeping things PRIVATE right?
This helps me segue to something else that caught my attention. If you're reading this, please take this with a grain of salt. I'm not calling anyone out and I mean no disrespect at all.
I have rarely (if ever) seen any good come out of a thread created to announce your departure from an online community because of unsettled differences, hurt, anger, bitterness, etc.
The only time I have seen this work favorably is when a user announces they are leaving the community because they have personal matters to deal with (i.e. someone in the family is sick, they got a new job, etc.) Even then, there were a few crows pecking at their feet trying to bring them down.
The reason why I'm saying this is because every time I come across one of these threads, whether it's on this site or any online community I manage or am a part of, I CRINGE. Really, I do.
Here's are some reasons why you shouldn't exit this way.. they are my reasons because I've done this before:
- nobody really cares (sorry, it's the truth)
- you're burning bridges (remember, communities like this one are a huge breeding ground (excuse the pun) for making contacts with people that can help you now AND in the FUTURE)
- nobody really cares (sorry, it's still the truth)
- you potentially end up looking like an arse (imagine down the road, you meet up with people offline who ironically visit this place online quite a bit... now you're faced with how do you get back into this community without people calling you out?)
For me, I would rather users FOR THEIR OWN GOOD not post any kind of "I'm leaving thread" in our community. In fact, this is something I will speak to the mods/admins about adding in as a rule of sorts.
If you are going to leave, do it quietly. If you must bash this site, people on this site, and the admins/mods, do it in a PM.
The admins/mods here are not naive to think that there will be no friction on this site. In any kind of group setting, there always will be. They have and will always do their best to keep the peace around here in an unbiased manner.
Speaking of the admins/mods....