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I wish that...

I wish that I could "disengage" from threads that have gone awry (inside fighting, way off-topic digressions, etc.), but once I have posted on a thread, I'm "stuck" with getting it bumped up when new posts occur.

Is there any way to do this (without having to remove my post)?

I'm sure there are other "wish list" items that you have, too.

I really do hope the Chowhound team can accomplish this. Thanks.

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    1. Great suggestion.

      There are times when I won't reply to a thread in its infancy knowing that down the line it's going to morph into an off-topic shouting match.

      E.g. "What's the best hamburger in [insert city]?"

      1 Reply
      1. re: ipsedixit

        some morphing is fine, but pissing matches are tiresome.

        although i do enjoy some back and forth, and often learn lots.

        and i'm certainly guilty of going off-topic.

        i guess i just want a way to disengage on threads that i no longer want to follow.

      2. I'm not sure what you mean. Do you get some sort of notification when a thread you've posted on has a new post? Am I missing this feature? Can't you just disengage by not reading the thread? I'm confused...

        2 Replies
        1. re: roxlet

          yes, roxlet, there is a little highlighted area that says "new" in red print (on the gray) -- on the left of the thread title. any thread that you have posted on is then moved to the top of your "my chow" "my posts" que.

          and yes, one can disengage by not reading. but the threads will still do their moving to the top of your que as long as others are posting.

          1. re: alkapal

            I guess that I never really go to My Chow so that's why I never noticed this.

        2. I totally agree! In fact, on a few occasions I've requested that my post be removed so that I wouldn't have to see updates on "my chow".

          4 Replies
          1. re: Marge

            Normally the mod's are pretty reluctant to remove content from threads so that posters won't "have to see updates" on their MyChow page. Did you have any other reason than that for requesting the deletions?

            1. re: Servorg

              Yes--if I responded to something that was removed, so my response is now outof context and meaningless.

              1. re: Marge

                That makes perfect sense and have done the same thing a few times.

                1. re: Marge

                  The mods have always deleted my reply to a deleted post if the context of my post now makes no sense. In fact, they have deleted posts by other Chowhounds that go out of context with no additional info if I report them.

                  I don't report the latter often, but sometimes a reply to a deleted post looks so nuts that leaving it will cause responses about it.

            2. No, sorry, there's no way to do this, and we do discourage posters from requesting removal of their posts for this reason... and we won't do it if the post has replies, as that will cause the replies to the now-deleted post to seem out of synch with the conversation.

              In our experience, such threads most often appear on the Not About Food and Food Media & News boards, so we encourage those who don't want to get "stuck" with threads like this to post with a very light hand on those boards.

              5 Replies
              1. re: The Chowhound Team

                <sigh> as i suspected..... drats!

                yes, i'm needing to be more judicious about where i stick my nose. ;-).

                chowhound team, wouldn't you say that the "home cooking" boards are the "nicest" (i.e., least contentious)?

                1. re: alkapal

                  Since we've introduced them, both our Home Cooking and Gardening boards have remained remarkably civilized. We don't keep official stats but the general moderator consensus is that those boards are the least work-inducing. ;-) Posting on those boards won't guarantee that you won't get threads "stuck" but you'll hate those stuck threads a lot less.

                  1. re: The Chowhound Team

                    Bit of a dustup brewing on HC re rice, broth, and technique re risotto. Gloves aren't totally off yet.

                2. re: The Chowhound Team

                  But why not just have an "unsubscribe" feature?

                3. I understand the pain here. But it's not something that really bothers me. I know when I've disengaged - which I try to before I respond to some tosser with a remark that will get me banned from the site (about once a week on average) - and just ignore the "bump".

                  It's when they resurrect themselves two years down the line and all the shite starts up again.

                  1. You can always check the box (at the top of the thread list on your profile page) that will order the threads chronologically according to when you posted on them. It's not a perfect solution though, since something that interested you years ago might have a helpful new post which you'd miss unless you periodically scan distant pages on your activity list.

                    1. On my wish list... a pm or private chat feature. There have been times when I wanted that feature because if I posted, I knew that certain particular people would chime in, and rare was the time that I was disappointed.

                      1. ..that shilling was punishable by something else than the restaurant beccoming "unmentionable." Why not tag the offending posts with a statement that it was self-promotional and allowing Hounds to draw their own conclusions. The reason I mention this is that when a really great place is censored, local Hounds are deprived of really helpful information and guidance. Thus it's really the community who is punished. This happened a couple of years ago with the top restuarant in our area, and many threads were missing a great recommendation.

                        And as has been pointed out many times, vet hounds can smell a smear or shill a mile away.

                        14 Replies
                        1. re: louuuuu

                          Hear hear. Small bpards suffer SIGNIFICANTLY more than larger boards. In FFD CTY CT if you lose a restaurant it is equivilent to losing 100 restaurants in San Fran

                          1. re: jfood

                            To "lose" a restaurant implies that it is no longer around for you to enjoy eating at (its main purpose for existing). You and louuuuu and others can still happily eat at said restaurant (if you so choose). You can blog about the restaurant (if you have a blog). You can write the restaurant up on Yelp (or some other discussion site) if you like. It seems like the "loss" of being able to write about the restaurant here is rather minimal in the overall scheme of things.

                            1. re: Servorg

                              Come on, JFood was being figurative, not literal. The restaurant obviously hasn't evaporated into thin air. It's just that Chowhound readers, many of whom rely on it for guidance, are deprived of its recommendation.

                              Besides the subject of this particular threat is what we'd wish for on Chowhound, not Yelp, CtBites, Trip Advisor, Zagat or in the "overall scheme of things." If that were the case, my wishlist would be never ending.

                              1. re: louuuuu

                                "It's just that Chowhound readers, many of whom rely on it for guidance, are deprived of its recommendation"

                                That's not exactly a heavy price to pay to keep the scourge of shills at bay here. Restaurants that do get banned have to really work at it to earn that distinction. If that's the game they want to play they should not be rewarded for it in any way.

                                All you would be doing is convincing all the other restaurant owners (who do play by the rules now) to say "Screw that. I'm getting into the shilling / smearing game too" And that would destroy this site. So you'll have to pardon me if I get a little passionate over the wish to let shilling go here. Just the off topic chatter/screaming back and forth about "This is shilling!" and the counter "No it's not!" that would break out would ruin Chowhound as we know it.

                              2. re: Servorg

                                yes and in LA there are 100's more to go to. when you cannot discuss current offerings in regions where there are 10's not 100s of good places it is totally different.

                                jfood will stop now so he does not get deleted.

                                1. re: jfood

                                  As I pointed out, there are a myriad of ways to discuss any restaurant you wish. Just not here.

                                2. re: Servorg

                                  in this area Yelp is horrible. the average person thinks a frozen daiquiri is the cat's meow of fine cuisine

                              3. re: louuuuu

                                Ahh. But there may be "shilling" and "Chowhound shilling".

                                I understand the former. But I fail to understand the logic, practicality or desirablity of a recent email to me from the moderators where I was asked to "not post reports about any places where you're known to the house".

                                Frankly it is a nonsensical position for the moderators to take - not least, as we all know, there are very many Chowhound members who are regular customers at a place and, therefore, are "known to the house". However, I shall abide by such a ruling and will not post or comment about anywhere where I might be known. Might mean I'm not posting on too many places at all, of course.

                                1. re: Harters

                                  Ahh but there is 'known' and 'known'

                                  It is sort of like rare banned restaurants. There are only a handful of those places where one is REALLY known. If a virgin or two needs to be thrown into the volcano to satisfy the food gods and keep the board safe from shills and misleading reviews ... we are all the better for it.

                                  I had a restaurant that I went to for over a decade. When it closed, the bardender went to another joint. Knowing this person for so long, I helped her out in a crisis. Chowhound asked me not to post about the place.

                                  At first I thought this was dumb. The chef didn't know me. Why should it matter?

                                  Then I thought about it. The bartender would often ask the kitchen for extra tastes for me. I often got comped on wine. My experience wasn't that of the stranger walking in the door.

                                  I could rave about the place ... not because of the comps but because I really did like it ... I wouldn't be eating there as often as I did if the food was swill .. but still, I wasn't getting the average experience. My experience may be misleading to other customers.

                                  It sttil gives me pangs when someone attacks the joint and I can't rush to its defense. But you know ... there are lots of posters on the board ... the place really is good and someone always stands up for it. My little comment or lack of it doesn't mean much in the vast picture.

                                  Then there are places you go to regularily. They know your face if not your name, but they don't treat you any differently. You are just a customer they more or less see regularily.

                                  There is 'known' and 'known'

                                  If the policy works overall ... despite the sometimes mystery ... I'm not really going to try to fix it ... anymore.

                                2. re: louuuuu

                                  In general, we simply remove shilling posts. Labeling those posts as dishonest would put us in a bad legal position, if we happened to be wrong.

                                  We disallow discussion of a given restaurant when it's not possible for us to reliably determine which posts are coming from shills and which are not. It'd be nice to be able to leave up posts from good, trusted hounds in those situations, but that just prompts more posts from not-so-good, not-so-trusted hounds and leaves us with more work to do trying to tell them apart. And we have more information to judge that on than the users of the site do, so when we're no longer able to tell, you can be pretty sure the site's users can't be sure, either.

                                  You also have to keep in mind that our audience is not just veteran hounds -- we have new hounds, people who are just reading along, etc. The site has to be reliable and honest for all of them, not just those who are adept at spotting shills.

                                    1. re: Jacquilynne

                                      If someone accidentally posts about one of these "unmentionables," is it just removed like that? Do you let us know that the reason it was removed was because posting on that particular restaurant aren't allowed? How does a person know if speaking of a certain restaurant isn't allowed...just curious...and how common is this? I am guessing it is pretty rare, but it is weird to think that an established hound wouldn't even be able to post about it.

                                      1. re: iluvtennis

                                        It is prety rare these days. IMO, it is because of the policy to ban restaurants that fewer places try it.

                                        I would guess I'm an established hound and one of my favorite places was banned. It was sad I couldn't post about it but I look at the whole picture. There are a lot of good restaurants I can write about. If there is one or two that I can't, the world doesn't end and if I really think it is fab, I can post on other sites. It is not like Chowhounds are lacking for good eats if a handful of rotten apples are tossed out of the barrel.

                                        My experience has been that if you write a report about a restuarant that is banned or under investigation, it is removed and the mods send an email about suspicous behaviour or some such thing.

                                        If you are just replying breifly to a post ... i.e. I recommend xxx ... it will be deleted and depending on how busy they are you may or may not get a reply. It has been so long since I've posted about a banned joint, I'm not really remembering.

                                        It took me a while to get the logic behind this, but it works better than most, so it doesn't bother me.

                                      2. re: Jacquilynne

                                        "I wish that.."

                                        That was the fun tone and subject of this thread.

                                        A wish is not a rant. Don't be so defensive.

                                    2. Chowhound threads are way too pristine. Mixing it up should be both interesting and informative.

                                      Wish lists? A few thoughts come to mind:

                                      1). Move contentious threads to a "Thunderdome" board. There is nothing wrong with heated argument. I suggest that passion can be invigorating and entertaining. Some measure of oversight would be required but that goes without saying.

                                      2). Breaking down boards by strict geographic boundaries doesn't work. Greatly expand the number of boards and allow Chowhounders to pick/select the boards they wish to form into a satisfying whole. It's not rocket science, just good customer service. Programming this modest feature is neither difficult nor expensive.

                                      Lots more but you get the idea.

                                      24 Replies
                                      1. re: steve h.

                                        A Road Trip board has a certain appeal to me.

                                        1. re: steve h.

                                          In my experience, customer service is something one gets in connection with something one has paid for.

                                          1. re: MMRuth

                                            Nothing like starting the day with a laugh. Thanks for that, Ruth.

                                            1. re: MMRuth

                                              And all the posters have paid for the service with their time and thoughts. Paying with money is just one form of payment.

                                                1. re: jfood

                                                  Or the mirror image to that idea, that the sight has paid me so much more than I ever thought possible, with untold (if I told then I'd really be in trouble!) hours of pleasure discussing and learning about something that I have always enjoyed (but even more so now because of Chowhound).

                                                  1. re: Servorg

                                                    yes, i too love chowhound, and mr. alka has a love-hate relationship.

                                                    "are you on chowhound *again*?"

                                                    1. re: alkapal

                                                      Gee, i've never heard that from MY husband... ;-)

                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                        My husband accepts it because he's the beneficiary of many CH tips, recipes, restaurant recs. etc., etc. :-)

                                                        1. re: chowser

                                                          exactly, chowser!

                                                          "what does chow say?"

                                                        2. re: alkapal

                                                          I'm not a huge TV fan and also for most shows I can be on the laptop and watch a show at the same time. So that's kinda our after-dinner routine. But he love's being the beneficiary of my increased and hopefully increasing cooking skills. Also he's "gotten to know" some of you from my reading to him so he gets chuckles also. The religion-themed dinner is our current fave :)

                                                        3. re: Servorg

                                                          In a business transaction there is consideration granted on both sides. Here it does as well. just like you pay for a meal with cash and enjoy the meal, here you pay with time and enjoy the thoughts. it was the idea that the posters are not a "customer" or a "vendor" or have something in this other than take-take is what jfood disagrees with.

                                                          1. re: jfood

                                                            "...here you pay with time and enjoy the thoughts."

                                                            I just never think of my time here that way. Never. If I ever get to the point here where it feels at all like work, then I'll be gone. I do this because I enjoy it. Simple.

                                                            If I can be of help to pay the site back for all it's given me I do so by taking the time to create new place links or by tracking down a web site to put into a place link. But again, I couldn't possibly come within a light year of giving back enough to pay for all the enjoyment I've received from Chowhound.

                                                            1. re: jfood

                                                              One doesn't to pay with time or thoughts -- the site is here for everyone to read, regardless of whether they post or not.

                                                              1. re: limster

                                                                Chowhound sells a product to its advertisers. Readers/contributors like us provide the measurables that Chow presents to advertisers.

                                                                As most know, limster's contributions are legendary. He shares his prolific and insightful IP for free.

                                                                1. re: steve h.

                                                                  Thanks for your kind words, but given that many of the first generation chowhounds, including Jim Leff himself, still use the boards actively in pretty much the same way and in the same spirit as before, the credit needs to go to them first.

                                                                2. re: limster

                                                                  guys, you're missing jfood's point.

                                                                  this started with the posters not being "customers". In a community, of which CH is one, everyone is a customer, a seller, a user, a giver, a taker, a vendor, an owner, a lover, a hater, a deletee, a contributor, a lurker, etc. It is a community. at some point each and every one of us has worn each of these jerseys.

                                                                  some people have a credit balance, some a debit balance.

                                                                  if you guys want to disagree with that, then you and jfood will agree to disagree.

                                                                  1. re: jfood

                                                                    As often, I find myself in agreement with jfood.

                                                                    I'm an active member of another board (entirely different subject). The creation of one man, it started small (I'm member #72). When it was small, it was very focussed and ultra-friendly. Now it's large and very significant in its field. It's no longer in the ownership of the guy and, unsurprisingly, the ethos of the place has evolved. The community is still a community of sorts - not the close friendly one but a wider one. But it is still much as jfood describes for Chowhound, which has also evolved into something obviously different than the founder's original thought, with contributors having those different roles at different times (and, indeed, having several roles at the same time).

                                                                    1. re: jfood

                                                                      Howdy, jfood.
                                                                      I was in agreement with you and, by extension, myself. I wanted to make it clear that limster is a prolific contributor and brings a currency, his insight, to the table.
                                                                      I apologize if I was obtuse.

                                                                      1. re: steve h.

                                                                        not obtuse at all, jfood also reads limster with hopes of learning. More harder is being in disagreement with oneself. :-)

                                                                        1. re: jfood

                                                                          ah, the curse.
                                                                          ...and the blessing.

                                                                      2. re: jfood

                                                                        I agree CH is transactional -- a "give and take". Which brings up another wish: that OP's asking for recommendations report back on their choice and experience. I'd say most do not. And thats "take" with no "give."

                                                                        1. re: louuuuu

                                                                          "And thats "take" with no "give.""

                                                                          A website that mirrors real life! Who would a thunk it? ;-D>

                                                            2. re: steve h.

                                                              I like the "Thunderdome" idea. There was a recent thread about risotto that got somewhat heated and got highly editted. That editting removed a huge amount of great information about stock versus broth. (I know, I know, not something a non-CH would want to read a huge amount about but still....) I'm glad I read it before the editting. I learned things I never knew before and it will positively effect my future cooking.

                                                            3. I wish the CH Team would no longer allow any comments or threads that have to do with food safety, food poisoning, etc. Every possible thing has been said, every possible bias has been expressed.

                                                              4 Replies
                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                The difficulty with that sort of blanket prohibition is, new approaches or discoveries are always being made, and that might relegate the dissemination of the information to delivery through other venues (where those hounds who might take advantage of it may not see it as early as they might of otherwise, or at all).

                                                                1. re: Servorg

                                                                  And I think the CH could write the moderators and say, "hey, I have some NEW info. Can I post it?" That eliminates all the same old, same old.

                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                    A lot of new posters with new information come here by "Googling" in. They are Googling an area they have interest in and they run across an existing CH thread on that subject. That spurs them to register and post. I think that losing that sort of serendipitous sharing of information on one of those banned subjects would be a negative for the site. And, at times, we have gained some great posters through just that sort of "out of the blue" mechanism.

                                                                    1. re: Servorg

                                                                      I know I'm talking "pie in the sky when you die":) But in a perfect CH world, all those posts would be locked with a note at the bottom saying "this subject gets much anecdotal and repetitive information. If you have new info,please send it to blah, blah, blah." Or I wonder if everytime people start on the subject within a post that's not strictly food safety related, then would reporting it get it deleted? It just goes on and on and often hijacks a thread. Just my opinion, of course.

                                                              2. I wish that....

                                                                Chowhound would start a new Food Preservation board. A place where we could exchange technique, recipes, info, and learn how to preserve all kinds of things from meats to fruits to cheeses to nuts to veggies, etc., in all the ways that foods are smoked, canned, frozen, cellared, dried, etc.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: morwen

                                                                  I think that's a fantastic idea. Really.

                                                                2. I wish that you could change your screen name without losing your history.