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Sad to SEE [moved from Ontario]

Am I wrong, or does it seem that the participation of CH members has slowed considerably over the last few months? I used to look forward to stimulating comments, reviews and opinions, but now it seems most mundane to read the topics and thoughts. I hope I'm wrong......any thoughts? If I'm way off base, then let's get back at it folks! We all love food, restaurants and ingredients, so let's start pushing the envelope again and try to make a difference! You would all be surprised how many people in the industry read our opinions. Let's give them something to think about!

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  1. For me personally, it has become uninspired to post in this community. It seems like the only people who post are part of the same socioeconomic background in real life (many of them even go out for dinners with each other as well) and suggest the same restaurants again and again. And whenever there is an actually interesting, stimulating topic, it gets deleted by moderators almost immediately. I'd rather post on Yelp! where I can have whatever views I want without feeling chastised.

    1. yeah i sincerely wish this place wasn't so heavily moderated, i have a constant fear that what i post will just magically disappear because some anonymous guy doesn't like it.

      i also wish there was more diversity amongst the userbase but i can't really fault the site for that i guess

      1. Not wrong, sadly. I've always been more a lurker than a contributor, so I have no one to blame but myself, but I agree that the same tired thoughts seem to be cropping up over and over. Has Chowhound jumped the shark (fin)? Maybe. Though I'll still read anything Charles Yu writes!

        1 Reply
        1. re: schmecks

          ditto. mostly a lurker. CH is always my first stop for reviews though. i have much respect for many members on this board, versus something like yelp.

        2. There is still a lot of interesting stuff being posted, but I have to agree: not as much as before.

          I have definitely noticed a slowing down.

          Over-moderation? Maybe. About a quarter of my postings get turfed -- for a variety of reasons, I guess, since they are all on different topics with different scopes.

          Some of my faves such as estufarian, do not seem to be posting as much. And I have slowed down too.

          I do like the new Costco thread.

          But too many conversations move into "cheapo" land, to get the best value for the dollar without any consideration for the food itself.

          Will this post survive? I'll check back, making a safety copy.

          1. *dons flame retardent suit*

            Or, maybe the TO dining scene is stagnant?

            2 Replies
            1. re: CocoaChanel

              as someone who enjoys eating out more than the average man, at a huge variety of price points and atmospheres and parts of town, i don't think that's fair at all. if anything there's too much that i want to try that i don't have time for/can't afford to do it all. and also as someone who has many close friends who work in various positions at eateries both well regarded and otherwise, i know that most of them agree with me. stagnant doesn't seem fair at all, or maybe you're not trying hard enough?

              "But too many conversations move into "cheapo" land, to get the best value for the dollar without any consideration for the food itself."

              i think this is completely untrue. really, we're all here because of the food. if we weren't interested in quality we'd all be eating at like, sassafraz or something instead of talking about food on the internet. that being said, no one likes being ripped off so certainly discussion of value has to come into play

              1. re: disgusti

                I eat out a lot. My waist line is testament to that.

                Why do the same places keep coming up. It can;t be that "everyone" isn't trying hard enough

            2. moderation sucks.

              yelp seems to be taking over, it has an app, you can easily add pictures...although you can write a review it must be posted from the webpage rather than directly from the app...

              i don't like yelp for a couple of reasons...owners and their friends use it to promote-er- i mean 'review' their own places and disgruntled employees use it to trash-er- i mean pan their former employers - although yelp says that it weeds out most of both. so many 1 and only reviews by these people should be a tip off...i mean we all see it-why doesn't yelp?

              i also think the technology is old...we were promised an app but i haven't seen one yet...the site works best on the google chrome iphone app but i'd like to see chowhound develop its own app.

              2 Replies
              1. re: ingloriouseater

                Surely the paradigmatic example of dysfunctional moderation was the recent decision to yank a negative review of Daisho. It got posted to Yelp, David Chang heard about the situation, and contacted the poster to make things right.

                So here we have a situation where a major chef takes a diner's report of a bad experience seriously enough to travel to Toronto from NYC, calls the poster to apologize and invites them for a special meal.

                Chowhound moderators, on the other hand, removed the "offending" report within a few minutes of its being posted. What an embarrassment.

                1. re: antirealist

                  "Chowhound moderators, on the other hand, removed the "offending" report within a few minutes of its being posted. What an embarrassment."

                  fluffythemonkey says he did not post it to Chowhound because it could be deleted, not that it was deleted.

              2. After reading this thread earlier this afternoon, I had to hunt it down in the "Site Talk" forum, even though it's specific to Toronto/Ontario. Which is indicative of the problem isn't it?

                Moderation on this site seems to be a group of frightened volunteers who keep up the false bonhommie (right you "hounds"?) while eviscerating anything that gets remotely interesting. Humour? Not allowed. Even slightly off topic, Not allowed! Someone posting 147 photos of their latest fine dining experience? Bring it on.

                This site has all the character and personality of a piece of cardboard.

                16 Replies
                1. re: hal2010

                  I'm curious. Unless I'm missing something, how is this post specific to Toronto/Ontario?

                  1. re: hal2010

                    Frightened volunteers, eh? They certainly seem to be too frightened to allow any mention of the recent incident concerning David Chang's Daisho.

                    A major chef took a diner's report of a bad experience seriously enough to travel to Toronto from NYC, called the poster to apologize and invited them for a special meal.

                    Chowhound moderators, on the other hand, removed the "offending" report within a few minutes of its being posted.

                    Chang takes the report seriously and acts on it; Chowhound won't even allow it to be posted or discussed. That's a big part of what's wrong with this site.

                    1. re: antirealist

                      That Chang review on Yelp is discussed here:

                      I think your previous post (which got deleted along with my reply) misrepresented the role of Chow moderators.

                      1. re: paulj

                        The original Chang review is not discussed in that thread - that's kind of the point. Two people asked what happened to the initial review. The OP said it was removed, but could be read on Yelp, and the CH moderators promptly deleted both of those responses.

                        I don't believe either of my posts on this issue misrepresent the actions of the CH moderators. A report of a bad experience was deleted by the moderators. Any references to the the report or its deletion have also been removed. Fortunately the owner of the restaurant took it the report very seriously, and acted appropriately.

                        1. re: antirealist

                          I understand this post
                          to mean that the review could have been posted on Chow, not that it was.

                          1. re: paulj

                            No, in that post she's referring to the report of her second special meal at Daisho, courtesy of Chang. As she says above, "Chow hound didn't really want me to post it here since it's considered special treatment and not a fair review."

                            I think you misunderstand what I'm talking about here. It's the deleted report of her first meal at Daisho I'm referring to, not the review of her second special meal, which she posted on Yelp instead of CH for reasons explained in the above paragraph.

                            Unless you were fortunate enough to be able to read the original posts before they were removed, it might be hard to know what went on:

                            The OP initially reported a bad experience on CH. That post was removed. She posted it on Yelp. She got a special meal at Daisho in compensation. She wasn't allowed to review it on CH, or even explain why she received it in anything but the vaguest terms. She reviewed it on Yelp instead. She wrote praising David Chang on CH. Any references to the first Yelp report or to the deleted CH report were deleted by CH moderators.

                            1. re: antirealist

                              Is it your belief/contention that the original "bad review" was taken down simply because it was a report of a "bad experience?" That has never been the case on this site that I have seen or experienced, ever...

                              1. re: Servorg

                                I have no idea why it was removed, and the CH moderators aren't saying. Yelp didn't delete it, and you can read it in full on http://www.foodnerds.ca/ and decide for yourself.

                                It seemed to me to be a factual report from someone with a reliable CH posting history. Certainly David Chang took the incident very seriously.

                                But unless you have one of your own negative reviews removed, or are lucky enough to catch one before it disappears, you really have no idea what sort of "bad reviews" are taken down. You only get to see what stays up.

                                1. re: antirealist

                                  I read it and it is very apparent why it was removed as it violated the site rules for CH. More than that I'm not going to say. No conspiracy theories needed.

                                  1. re: antirealist

                                    It was removed because of the mention of the hair. The posting guidelines very clearly state that

                                    "Reports of health violations, including food poisoning, bugs and foreign objects found in food are not permitted, as our breezy forum is not an appropriate venue for handling such urgent and serious issues. In order to be a trustworthy, useful resource in this area, we'd have to offer accurate, complete and timely information on health code violations and we're not in a position to do that -- and we'd rather not play host to inaccurate, incomplete or out-of-date information on such serious issues. Please report these issues to the appropriate health authorities, but don't post about them here."


                                    You may not agree with the policy (I don't), but it's not at all mysterious.

                                    1. re: antirealist

                                      I don't find the 'foodnerds' review on Yelp, though there are 2 reviews about Changs followup.

                                      1. re: paulj

                                        I didn't find it either. Could it be that the reviewer had it removed after getting a free meal? You gotta love the wonderful new world of social media.

                                          1. re: small h

                                            Indeed, but it's no longer on Yelp.

                                            1. re: SnackHappy

                                              Are you suggesting that the reviewer requested that her review be removed from Yelp once she'd gotten her free food? I don't have a dog in this race, and I really couldn't care less who profited or lost here, but I'm intrigued by the veiled accusations flying around.

                                              1. re: small h

                                                Well, somebody removed it. Let's ask the person concerned and see.