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Current Tone on the Boards

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I would've titled this thread "Pulsetaking the Zeitgeist", but I wanted somebody beside linguafood to read it.

The thing is, more and more, it has become palpable that there is a "bad vibe" in the air. The acrid smell of burnt sugar, the perfume of rotting durian, the stench of a spilled bong, have permeated my nostrils, soured my iron-coated stomach, as well as those of some other 'hounds with whom I have communications off the Site. Where does this weirdness come from? Under which floorboard does that hidden, evil heart beat? I don't recall such a cloud darkening in the virtual skies we share since the days in '08 when Jamie Dimon and his cronies got on their knees and unzipped Paulson's fly - "We will gladly pay you Tuesday for a few Billion today . . . ."

Fine. I see some things that are identifiable.

I mean, there is a recurring feature on "Pet Peeves". Clearly, that kind of message from the home planet can't be a positive reinforcement (I have a Pet Peeve, it's people bitching). There have been a bunch of comments by 'hounds concerning a feeling that there are others they want to "ignore" without even seeing what they've posted. Complaints about how individual posts that have been deleted are taken as affronts. Queries about how to disengage from those who won't stop barking, etc. There is also a growing lack of sense of humor when reading posts - not everything on a food geek exchange should be so serious, after all.

Look, I love you guys. I'll spar with any of you that wanna be assholes, but I do that with my own brother too. Pick on a defenseless, little Omega pup, and expect the Alpha 'hounds to howl. That's how packs work. It's just the dog in me, right George? At the end, we all break bread, lick wounds, and consider where to find the best bowl of kibbles.

Any other thoughts on the State of the Site? Any other temperature takers? Maybe we could turn my ramblings into a productive discourse? "Forgive me my trespasses . . . ." after all?

  1. I enjoy clever humor, gathering food knowledge, and rational debate that comports with Robert's Rules of Order. I estimate that 10% of hounds like me, 10% hate my guts, and 80% couldn't give a shit. Those are about life's averages.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Veggo

      I woudda put that ratio at 25:30:45 for you. 72.5:25.5:2 for me.

      1. re: MGZ

        You are a cocky, arrogant, egotistical, narcissistic delusional bastard, but that's partly why some of us like you. Thank you, by the way, for upgrading my scores...:)

        1. re: Veggo

          And, thank you, for fueling the delusions. . . .

      2. re: Veggo

        And me percent loves you!!

          1. re: Veggo

            first off, veggo, thank you for using "couldn't" for the constipated 80%. too many people are incorrectly using "could" for "give a shit, give a rat's ass, care less," etc.

            and, now, to bring it back to a food-related post, i'd like to recommend prunes, pears and flax seeds, to those 80 percent suffering from constipation. these foods have a gentle, laxative effect.

            1. re: Veggo

              but what if I'm the one who hates my guts and everyone else is purely ambivalent? run those %'s...

              seriously, I don't see this negativity as being all that different in recent months. it ebbs and it flows. the political analogy would be single-issue voters for whom the single-issue changes from cycle to cycle.

              1. re: hill food

                Like your last paragraph a lot.

            2. I see the bad moon arising.
              I see trouble on the way.
              I see earthquakes and lightnin'.
              I see bad times today.

              [Chorus:]
              Don't go around tonight,
              Well, it's bound to take your life,
              There's a bad moon on the rise.

              I hear hurricanes ablowing.
              I know the end is coming soon.
              I fear rivers over flowing.
              I hear the voice of rage and ruin.

              All right!

              Hope you got your things together.
              Hope you are quite prepared to die.
              Looks like we're in for nasty weather.
              One eye is taken for an eye.

              1 Reply
              1. re: jrvedivici

                Great musician, Fogerty. Too bad for Saul Zaentz' interference in a great career. "Zacks can't Danz but he'll take your money"

              2. I think there are a lot of people that would like this thread, and it's participants thus far, to just go away.

                1. "I have a Pet Peeve, it's people bitching"

                  Ahem...(and no cover is provided in bitching about bitching by the throwaway line "Forgive me my trespasses..." due to the length and vehemence of the preceding passage of this post)

                  20 Replies
                  1. re: Servorg

                    The quote from The Lord's Prayer was offered as invitation, though, admittedly, with a bit of agnostic sarcasm.

                    And, any note of vehemence was certainly not intended. The purpose was simply to open discussion, albeit, not in the simplest possible way.

                    1. re: MGZ

                      What's that one about people who live in glass houses? I will channel the Beatles on the 50th anniversary of their Ed Sullivan show debut and just say "Let it Be" and leave it at that.

                        1. re: jrvedivici

                          In California? You must be kidding. It's a requirement that they sleep in the nude. Our hillsides are denuded and so are our glass house denizens.

                          1. re: Servorg

                            And nobody really cares or pays attention until the hillsides catch fire. 2 of my OC golf buddies lost their homes.

                          2. re: jrvedivici

                            These people http://nalatanalata.com/journal/an-la... were digitally "dressed" after the photos were taken...

                            1. re: jrvedivici

                              Is there any other way? Who wears fucking clothes to bed??

                              1. re: linguafood

                                If fucking, I would wear no clothes. Who has fucking clothes?

                                1. re: sal_acid

                                  All clothes are fucking clothes. Just not in bed '-)

                                  1. re: linguafood

                                    I hear some guys leave their socks on, especially in cold weather.

                                  2. re: sal_acid

                                    However I'm sure I've muttered more than once over the years "Fucking bra" when removing/dealing with an especially tricky clasp that some young lady thought to buy just to frustrate excited and clumsy men...

                                    1. re: Servorg

                                      ME TOOOO!!! that's why I tell her not to wear one!

                                      1. re: PHREDDY

                                        First dates tend not to go well with that sort of pre date edict...

                                  3. re: linguafood

                                    Remember we are talking about living in a glass house. If you were my neighbor you would pay me a pretty penny to sleep fully clothed.

                                    1. re: jrvedivici

                                      I don't look into my neighbors' windows. What they do in turn, I cannot say....

                                      1. re: linguafood

                                        If I was your neighbor, you'd know. . . . Hell, you'd probably invest in Windex.

                                        1. re: MGZ

                                          I have a feeling we'd be looking out of the same window while sharing a few herbal varieties...

                                          1. re: linguafood

                                            As the boy's sang on number II, "What Is and What Should Never Be".

                                          2. re: MGZ

                                            When we were 12, we didn't need Windex. We could pee up to the roof. It was an amazing tool in its days.

                                  4. re: Servorg

                                    No sweat, my friend, I'm a Golden Rule guy - I try to remember everybody, "in my hour of darkness".

                              2. How about two new buttons?...A" bitching" button and most importantly a "I'm sorry" button?

                                1. I haven't been on the boards very long, and maybe I just wasn't paying attention before, but I seem to have noticed a lot more complaining threads on the site talk board in the last few weeks. I'm talking about the ones that are complaining about the mods or other posters, etc, and not the ones that are reporting technical problems with the site, etc.

                                  Anyways, to sum up, I agree that I don't really like the tone on the boards as of late, but it is what it is. I shall continue to post as long as topics on this site interest me, and dare I say, entertain me!!

                                  9 Replies
                                  1. re: SaraAshley

                                    I hope you stay with us, Sara. You add sparkle.

                                    1. re: SaraAshley

                                      Thus, my pretty, young friend, you have added to the notions of the battle-scarred, dirty-ugly, old bastards who have come before you, in a way that might further my initial entreaty. My sincere, hat off, appreciation . . . .

                                      1. re: SaraAshley

                                        Should I have the crew introduce more bugs to shift the focus of complaints away from other posters?

                                        1. re: meshane

                                          Or figure out how to put some Adderall in the feed...

                                          1. re: Melanie Wong

                                            I think benzos would be more helpful for a number of posters....

                                            1. re: linguafood

                                              But no alcohol with benzos . . . or maybe that's what you're suggesting. ;-J

                                              In truth, my reference to ADD/ADHD is because I feel bad that the OP's question is not getting addressed by many in this thread. But if MGZ doesn't care about the topic at hand, I guess I needn't either.

                                              1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                As always, Melanie, your sagacity is a welcome contribution to any topic before the Community that has attracted my own interest. Moreover, I take your "bad" feelings as an expression of reciprocal geniality. As usual, I find myself with a smile as I respond to your thoughts.

                                                With that in mind, I note, that a Valium or two with a few beers, can make for a very pleasant time - be it flying across the Nation, binge-watching "House of Cards", or Christmas dinner at your Sister-in-Laws's. (Please be aware that I left out those moments when, for example, you're coming down from three hits of "liquid" at a "Show", and the only way you're going to get to sleep before Noon on day two is some diazepam and four fingers of Stoli.)

                                                Most importantly, I offer the following notion: Sometimes, one asks a question and looks forward to the answers of those who put forth such thoughts. At the same time, one can also look forward to learning from the thoughts of those who choose not to put forward an answer. Patience and appreciation are often elusive friends, but they often bring the best "hostess gifts".

                                          2. re: meshane

                                            I doubt it would diminish the unavoidable reality that the boards are no longer moderated to keep things "friendly and fun."

                                            And I've never been a moderation basher.

                                            1. re: meshane

                                              maybe the mods could plant feints and red herrings within a thread to get the (few) truly indignant off on a tangent and then "the Team" could politely delete the exchange all together ("Ignore the (wo)man behind the curtain")

                                          3. and here I was, thinking that the boards have been pretty tame of late. It seems to wane and ebb...perhaps this is just another cycle.

                                            You posted an admonition just this morning to "lighten up"....perhaps it applies to everyone here?

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: sunshine842

                                              The thoughts contained in the post you quoted, as well as the content of thread to which it was contributed, were a part of the genesis of the instant thread. The time stamps should help to illustrate. Hell, I even made a self reference herein ("There is also a growing lack of sense of humor when reading posts - not everything on a food geek exchange should be so serious, after all."). I'm just trying to allow a forum to discuss why things "feel" the way they do. So, in the pertinent part you chose to attach to "lighten up", keep in mind, I'm not looking to bite into any jugulars.

                                              BTW - Why not respond to the lighthearted post you reference?

                                              Edit: the post to which sunshine is referencing: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9670...

                                              1. re: MGZ

                                                because I had nothing to add

                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                    what is that supposed to mean? That doesn't mean I agreed with you or didn't agree with you -- doesn't mean I thought it was brilliant or inane...just that I had nothing to add.

                                                    This conversation also brings up an old sales/customer service saw that an unsatisfied customer will tell 10 of their friends, while a happy customer will only tell 1 person...

                                                    There seems to be a parallel....it's a lot more "sexy" to bitch and moan than it is to say "hey, this is great!"

                                                      1. re: sunshine842

                                                        S842: I think my family crest contains the phrase "not happy until unsatisfied - not satisfied until unhappy"

                                              2. I think in general, people are assholes. Always have been, always will be. I of course include myself in that statement. I don't think people are acting any more assholeish, but more people are complaining about it.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: donovt

                                                  "Lady, people aren't chocolates. D'you know what they are mostly? Bastards. Bastard-coated bastards with bastard filling"
                                                  -Dr. Perry Cox

                                                2. Thank you for having the courage to address the elephant in the room.
                                                  I am so fricking sick of right-fighters here. By and large, we're discussing opinions, not solving world hunger and brokering world piece, so lighten up.

                                                  My biggest pet peeve is when I read "you don't understand, you OBVIOUSLY missed my point"

                                                  Really?
                                                  Really?
                                                  Could you be any more insulting? It's not ME, it's you, OBVIOUSLY.

                                                  GET OFF YOUR HIGH HORSE, SALLY!

                                                  Try this next time- "Let me rephrase..."
                                                  It's so much more civil, but then again, I think many CH'ers have made a career out of beating dead horse.

                                                  Say you piece and move on. You're not as compelling and interesting as you think you are.
                                                  Oh, and the more you right-fight, the more insecure you look.

                                                  How's that for tough love?

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: monavano

                                                    Honey, we need to have a little talk...
                                                    Just kidding, you are wonderful, and those are the words a man least wants to hear...)

                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                      Particularly, when his head has just hit the pillow.

                                                      1. re: MGZ

                                                        And a bad moon is rising.

                                                  2. I haven't read a single comment yet but ssenks for ze Cherman shoutout '-D

                                                    1. People seem a bit fiesty lately, not sure maybe it's the long winter.

                                                      47 Replies
                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                        Good point, my friend. If the mercury in the thermometer keeps reading below 30, nobody is happy when it gets reinserted.

                                                        1. re: MGZ

                                                          I think we're all tired of it. Though some of seem to be frustrated, stuck in the house and thinking of all the wonderful, tangential ways to argue about recipes in restaurants and hydration of cows in California.

                                                        2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                          You're not kidding.
                                                          I'm finding myself tiring of the long winter. I'm usually a snow GEEK, but the prospect of over a foot of snow on Monday just isn't doing it for me right about now ;-(

                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                            I grew up in CT, now I'm in FL, we call that cabin fever. End of winter, northerners are irritable and grouchy. But in 2 months the daffodils bloom and the robins return. Patience is the operative term.

                                                            1. re: Veggo

                                                              My crocuses (croci?) look like they will pop any day. Too bad they will be covered in snow in the next 24 hours.

                                                            2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                              Um, look fldhkybnva, if we want your opinion on the subject we will ask for it, ok? Face it. You are just a trouble maker with all the kitty talk and stuff so maybe if you think people are feisty it is because YOU are the problem!!! :-) :-) :-) :-)

                                                              In all seriousness, I would not necessary blame it on the weather. Until maybe a week ago or so I had been offline since last fall and when I returned it was basically the same people that were always being mean in the Spring and Summer, well, still being mean.

                                                              1. re: Fowler

                                                                I know...did you see Harters call me out last week? Poor little Shiitake, he's just so cute, he can't help it and neither can I.

                                                                Haha, I think you're on to something. It seems to be repeat offenders. I bet they are the most pleasant people in person :)

                                                                1. re: Fowler

                                                                  Um, wow. Just. Wow. Fowler.
                                                                  Apparently, you did not read her post.
                                                                  Too much chit chat going on here.
                                                                  I only come here to learn about food, not to discuss animals (that I may or may not be allergic to).
                                                                  You are just putting up a straw man argument, so I am done. Done with it, outta here, I tell ya.
                                                                  I just flagged this...because it is so inappropriate.
                                                                  In fact, I will flag this entire thread, because it is not about food.
                                                                  Oh...and your grammar is wrong in your second sentence.
                                                                  So there.

                                                                  I don't see anything wrong with the tone on these boards.

                                                                  :D

                                                                  1. re: sedimental

                                                                    You know what sedimental? I am done with your type of abusive, sarcastic responses to my comments. Screw this board. I will never post again!

                                                                  2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                    I think it's because tons of unpleasantness and snark are left up, of the type that used to be swiftly deleted. That preserved an overall really friendly tone to new posters getting a sense of CH and oldbies knowing the firm boundaries of the "friendly and fun" discussion that was highest priority here.

                                                                    Folks join, they see a lot of juvenile, non food related messing around, snarky, snotty exchanges that stay up as a norm for all newbies to be guided by, and oldbies give up and lash out at antagonists instead of flagging them because mods no longer give a shit for what they used to reinforce in words and deed.

                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                      From the messages I've received from the mods and via their silence/lack of action, I infer that there's a labor shortage. They seem to be trying to do more with less, hence the new layout being tried on the food quests board. And in their heart of hearts, I bet they agree with everything you've said that like attracts like.

                                                                      Or at least they did previously when they posted this:
                                                                      Chatty, "all chime in" discussions are addictive and contagious. Here's why it's a bad thing for Chowhound:

                                                                      1. we're trying to build a data trove, not a chat room. The chattier we get, the more chatty people are drawn into the site, and they dilute the other boards (and the great signal-to-noise ratio that attracted you here in the first place).

                                                                      2. All of you don't chime in on every discussion...because not everyone has feedback re: lasagna in Boise or brunch in Berkeley. But chatty discussions inflate far bigger and faster...it's like 1000 people getting on an elevator meant for ten. It takes over like kudzu.

                                                                      So, please resist the urge to use Chowhound like a chat room. One can go just about anywhere on the internet to chitchat. Let's keep Chowhound an oasis from all that.

                                                                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                        And this from the current FAQ:

                                                                        "In that same spirit, we avoid topics that are simply chatter. Threads should contain or solicit useful information and tips, rather than existing merely to give others something to post about. Chatty questions include (but aren't limited to, these are just a few examples) those that result in anyone and everyone chiming in with an item to add to a list ('every food reference in a movie ever'); questions that you're asking out of curiosity ('I'm curious if anyone else feels the same way about kumquats as I do'), questions that are basically rants in disguise ('this waiter was rude, am I right?'); questions based purely on personal preference which anyone can answer and no answer is more or less appropriate than any other ('foods no one else likes that you love'). If you just want to start a conversation for the sake of having something to talk about, it's probably chat, but if you're interested in the specific answers, and they'll help you eat better, it's probably okay."

                                                                        But I can't find the post where she/they said they had relaxed their stand about chattiness.

                                                                        1. re: c oliver

                                                                          Here's the exact quote from Jacquilynne:

                                                                          "In the last couple of years, we've tried to be a little more open to friendly personal interaction across the site. We don't want every thread to be all 'and then my puppy did this' all the time, but we're trying to be a little less staunchly 'Thou Shalt Be On Topic.' As long as things stay friendly and don't launch a cascade of off-topicness, we tend to leave alone friendly jokey asides and personal anecdotes that might not be strictly on point."

                                                                          And here's a link to the full post:

                                                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8885...

                                                                          This is just one of several such posts the mods have made on the topic.

                                                                          1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                            "don't launch a cascade of off-topicness,"

                                                                            Well, I'd like to see that "cascade" get reined in a whole lot.

                                                                            BTW, thanks for finding that.

                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                              I would too, but I don't see that happening. At all.

                                                                              You're quite welcome.

                                                                        2. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                          Thank you for this, Melanie. That post, about the chattiness and the stance that was taken at that time, really resonated with me.

                                                                          And that was one of the strongest appeals of CH for me, too: this was (and still is, though the signal-to-noise ratio is currently less than grand) a treasure trove of information. Easily accessible tidbits and morsels, offered by people who genuinely wanted to share their finds, and who didn't mind guiding someone new to the boards or to the region.

                                                                          I come here for the Chow. For the finds. For the suggestions. For the intelligent disagreements that are based on the food, not the Hound's personality.

                                                                          I don't come here for banter, rudeness, chit-chat, or anything else along those lines: I don't see this as being a social networking site.

                                                                          Or maybe it is, and I just missed that notification.

                                                                          1. re: ElsieDee

                                                                            Certainly some people use it as their social networking site. I find FAR less chatter on FB than here.

                                                                            1. re: ElsieDee

                                                                              I almost feel as if we're in the middle of some kind of social experiment. Maybe the mods are letting things go on chit-chat and nastiness in the hope that some sort of community self-policing will arise to the occasion. Or the complaints will grow louder, traffic continues to fall, and additional staff resources can be justified. Guess we'll find out what the community's limits are.

                                                                              Interestingly, yesterday "greygarious" found and bumped up a thread on the General Topics titled "Please No More Chatty Surveys" that defined them and why they were not welcome on the site. It was from 2003, before Chow's ownership. It has been deleted, and I guess that's understandable in some ways since it was a different ethos then. But here's a link to google's cached version:
                                                                              http://webcache.googleusercontent.com...

                                                                              On the other hand, the text I posted above, is from 2006 after the merger with Chow.com, and with the current manager.

                                                                              1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                I've had email from the moderators telling me that my reports about off topic chatter (and I'm both including myself in the "repeat offender" category and will never beech and moan about any of my joking replies being yanked into the ether, either) are not going to bear fruit as there is a new "relaxed attitude" about that subject.

                                                                                I guess the Sheriff in town never thought that his Colorado community would go "up in smoke" but yet, here we are. I should feel more ashamed and aggravated than I do at being co-opted and becoming part of the problem and not the solution. But the social networking bug has done its worst in my bloodstream too evidently.

                                                                                In any case I think the chit chat boat has sailed and we will just have to grit our collective teeth and ignore it, or contribute to it, or start beeching about it here on Site when the going just gets too rucking fough.

                                                                                1. re: Servorg

                                                                                  Veggo's reference to Lord of the Flies may be more apt than we thought.

                                                                                  The chit-chat and the snark attacks are more noticeable because of the paucity of food-centered discussion. If folks would spend some time swapping food tips be they about restaurants, ingredients, bargain shopping, bakeries, et al, there'd be something real to talk about instead of pointless attempts at air-headed humor and sniping at each other.

                                                                                  I feel that the decline in expert discussion about chow is where the real downfall is.

                                                                                  1. re: Servorg

                                                                                    You report off topic chatter? That's hilarious.

                                                                                  2. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                    And the one I posted is on the current FAQ thread.

                                                                                    I think your first paragraph is quite astute, MW.

                                                                                    1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                      I hadn't noticed they disappeared the revived 2003 thread. I wasn't looking for it at the time. A writer posted a query about why people go to AYCE buffets and I was trying to find the recent CH Team post about how surveys all belong in a particular thread (since found it - it's Chowhounds Wanted, on GT). I think I was searching using "calling all chowhounds" or something about volunteers, and the sole result was that 2003 thread. Since its parameters are SO different from current practice, I thought it was worth a revisit.

                                                                                  3. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                    Melanie Wong,

                                                                                    What is your criteria and the guidelines we should all use to avoid being chatty by your definition? If I were to say on the board that I drove up to Nicasio on a beautiful sunny afternoon to try their cheese and also mentioned how I enjoyed talking with the owner and mentioned their philosophy regarding farming would that violate your no being chatting policy when I disclosed that on our board? Do you simply want the cold, hard tasting note of the cheese and we cannot mention anything else in the note?

                                                                                    1. re: Fowler

                                                                                      What you've described is the art of story-telling in reporting on your visit. All good, I'd welcome the full account! If your post talks about something that goes in your mouth and what made it special (or terrible), it's not idle chat. And even better if it actually relates to the thread topic.

                                                                                      What I consider chatty are the posts that have nothing to do with food at all. Some examples would be posts that say:

                                                                                      "Amen!"

                                                                                      "+2!"

                                                                                      "Could you explain why the affordable care act is so expensive for my mother?"

                                                                                      "You're such a rebel."

                                                                                      ":-)"

                                                                                      "Poof!"

                                                                                      "You said it sister."

                                                                                      "me percent loves you!!"

                                                                                      Not every post needs a reply and affirmation from every head-nodder that is reading along. It just contributes to thread bloat and makes it harder for those who access the site via mobile. When I open a new post, I'd like some assurance that I'll learn something from reading it and not just find myself in the middle of some irrelevant back and forth.

                                                                                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                        wow what you refer to."middle of some irrelevant back and forth". that which you say offers nothing of any value to you I for one do "learn" from. I see which posters agree with others.I get a sense of conversation. I learn about interests of other posters. I have learned which posters have an intrest in history and who lives in the country and provides great gardening advice. there is always something to learn.

                                                                                        1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                          So the examples that MW gave above are things that provide value to you? What conversation? Other than food, why would one want to know "about interests of other posters." This is, after all, a food site. True social media gives every opportunity for what you describe/see. An interest in food history is a worthy topic. An interest in astronomy - no. BTW, there is a gardening board in case you've missed it.

                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                            Yes.. getting feel of " who " the poster is worthy to me...perhaps I am the oldfashioned one. I like knowing Mr.Greenjeans411 grows his own vegtables... that way if the thread is about Organic food being shipped causing an artifical sense of "pure" I read his posts with a different understanding.I have come to realize some posters are very well traveled. I appreciate reading their posts on exotic food.

                                                                                            1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                              So things like the following give you that?

                                                                                              "Amen!"

                                                                                              "+2!"

                                                                                              "Could you explain why the affordable care act is so expensive for my mother?"

                                                                                              "You're such a rebel."

                                                                                              ":-)"

                                                                                              "Poof!"

                                                                                              "You said it sister."

                                                                                              "me percent loves you!!"

                                                                                              And, yes, I agree with you. If every post had to do with food, I'd be very happy. Since we travel quite a bit, I so appreciate the recs I get. But I'd be cranky if I got replies that told me nothing.

                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                No but Ms Wong prefers a sterile text book of board. No Personality allowed just state your food bussiness stick to it and only it. I am saying A I do "get something" from a witty remark or an odd rejoiner.. maybe not an emotincon but ..a wandering thread has lead some interesting places...

                                                                                                1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                                  If that's your take away from what I posted above, then I guess I haven't explained myself well enough.

                                                                                                  The real life examples of chatty posts I gave above ONLY say those things and nothing else. This is a food site and I don't think it's unreasonable to ask that conversations be about food. My sense of community comes from our shared passion for food. I realize everyone has different ways of associating, but that passion is what unites us here. When that gets chipped away at, why should anyone stick around.

                                                                                                  Be as witty and playful as you like, we'd all enjoy good writing. But please direct it via the lens of FOOD. While I hate to hold up my own posts as examples, this one is specific to Fowler's question of how much leeway I would look for in reporting on a visit to a cheesemaker. This is a discussion of a day-long tour by a group of chowhounds to several cheesemakers and eating/drinking venues. Everyone who posted was engaged with what they learned and what they ate, and that passion and new knowledge shines through. Yes, absolutely talk about sustainable agriculture, animal husbandry, and pasteurization temperatures. Take a look,
                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/2572...

                                                                                                  Or this piece titled, Duck Jaws at Cooking Papa and the Joy Of Eating Without Worrying About Manners [Foster City], sets the stage by sharing some personal context to help us understand how much he fully enjoyed this dish. He's on topic, and I don't find the account at all sterile. But maybe you do,
                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/902579

                                                                                                2. re: c oliver

                                                                                                  Well since you specifically used one of my comments as an example, I will respond. What exactly is your problem with those responses? Is it the length of them? I find a smiley face to be the perfect response in many instances, but then again, I like to smile. :) I assure you I'm not out here looking for bs ways to comment with a smiley face. And if someone just wants to show they agree. They can't just say amen? Perhaps they don't feel the need to elaborate or have no further points to make. And yes, I will let one of my fellow posters know I love them if it's relevant to what I'm responding to, but then again, I love love and try to find reasons to love everyone everyday.

                                                                                                  1. re: SaraAshley

                                                                                                    You may want to look upthread and see that I was copying from Melanie Wong's post. You may want to address your questions to her.

                                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                      Only saw your post, so my apologies, but I don't feel like reposting this shit, as it really isn't a valuable use of my time in the first place.

                                                                                                        1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                          Do you? Awwwww come here Dawg!!!!! {{hugs}}

                                                                                            2. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                              ehhh, some of that +2 and Amen! stuff is a holdover from the pre-'recommend' days. I don't see it so much anymore. not to say there isn't log-rolling to be found.

                                                                                              1. re: hill food

                                                                                                But, hill, things like "sounds great" are the equivalent. And I don't find the 'recommend' button to be all that successful. Just me.

                                                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                  what, you're not self-centered enough to laboriously pore over a multi-hundred post thread to see if any post of yours has been tagged as a 'recommend'?

                                                                                                  some people need more brashitivity.

                                                                                                  1. re: hill food

                                                                                                    Ya know, I know a CH who quoted that very thing to me, i.e., "I have X number of recommends today vs. your Y." :) or is that :(

                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                          I for one NEVER lie on CH. True.

                                                                                                      1. re: hill food

                                                                                                        brashtivity....it has a nice ring to it

                                                                                        2. I could really do without the snarky replies that CH ers seem to love.

                                                                                          Don't begin a reply with "um..." which is internet shorthand for "you stupid asshole"

                                                                                          Don't have to agree with everything, but learn to disagree in a genteel and informative fashion.

                                                                                          31 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: sal_acid

                                                                                            "Don't have to agree with everything, but learn to disagree in a genteel and informative fashion."

                                                                                            I agree, sal. As I implied, we're all just here, when push comes to shove, to find out who leaves the best snausages, in the biggest bowl, on the warmest porch.

                                                                                            In other words, if you gotta be a d*ck to somebody, at least extent the courtesy of sniffing their as* in a friendly fashion first.

                                                                                            1. re: MGZ

                                                                                              Right, don't fuck me with my pants on!

                                                                                              1. re: monavano

                                                                                                If nothing else, it makes for easier clean up that way.

                                                                                            2. re: sal_acid

                                                                                              Add "wow, just wow, to that that list, please.
                                                                                              Seriously, "um" is like, what?? If you fart while your writing a response, must you annotate that as well?
                                                                                              <fart>

                                                                                              1. re: monavano

                                                                                                When I dive with my 1/4 inch neoprene wet suit, which zips from the back, sex is not an option.
                                                                                                Many claim they pee in it to get some warmth started, but I choose not to believe their story. I assuredly don't. Ever.

                                                                                                1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                  Oooh, I'm feeling warm all over ;-)

                                                                                                  1. re: monavano

                                                                                                    Golden shower? Not my style as a New Englander.

                                                                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                      Oh no! I meant more peeing in pool ;-)

                                                                                                      1. re: monavano

                                                                                                        My grandfather had a sign by his pool. "Defence de wringer ici". About the only French I know. Don't pee in the pool.

                                                                                                          1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                            Um... Veggo, "Ne pas faire pipi dans la piscine". How many times do I have to tell you?

                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                              !!! You are wonderful! Quick Sidebar: a pool in latin-speak is either an alberca or a piscina. With a hard-core gringo friend from Texas on a dive trip to Costa Rica, we stayed our first night at a fairly elegant hotel in San Jose, the Cariari. As we followed curving, well gardened paths to the pool, following directional signs, Tony barked out "I'm not swimming in anything called a piscina"

                                                                                                              1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                Neither would I. Love Tony!

                                                                                                              2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                Thank God you finally showed up to deal with him, Gio. It was getting exhausting.

                                                                                                                Just before sunup, he stirred. The front of his jeans soaked and the dregs of a bottle of Triple Sec clutched in his scaly fingers.

                                                                                                                I looked over, laughed, and offered him the better half of a roach I had scrounged from a dirty ashtray. "G'mornin', Man. Hellova night, eh?"

                                                                                                                Silence. . . .

                                                                                                                More silence. . . .

                                                                                                                So much silence and then just a palpable, steady-building awkwardness as I pocketed the last of the grass before that glassy-eyed, far-away gaze as it followed my crusty movements.

                                                                                                                "Coffee, Veg?"

                                                                                                                Silence . . . .

                                                                                                                More silence . . . .

                                                                                                                "I just made a fresh pot. I think one-a the girls went out for bagels."

                                                                                                                Silence . . . .

                                                                                                                More silence . . . .

                                                                                                                Then, finally, a terrible, awful howl. The sound was that of polar bear trying to deliver a breached cub. That of a near dead gladiator, broken sword in his gut, blood dripping from his mouth, looking up at Nero's downturned thumb.

                                                                                                                The words, I'll never forget:

                                                                                                                "WHO FUCKin' PISSED My pantsssss????"

                                                                                                                1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                  Cruel, pal. But if you Google up Key Largo Costa Rica you will get answers to your questions....Ticas!

                                                                                                                  1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                    First of all, I had my office wire payment for that, shall we just call it, "TAB"?

                                                                                                                    Second, thanks for permitting me to further the basic notion behind the OP, the vast, creative potential for online communication, friendly intercourse with other food geeks, patience and appreciation for one another, a recognition that we're not solving the problems in the Ukraine, etc. It may have been momentarily at your expense, but something tells me, we're more likely than most to be atop the barriers when the rockets fly.

                                                                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                          I'll just say I hate being cold

                                                                                                      2. re: sal_acid

                                                                                                        Hmm, I learn something new every day on CH. I have been known to start a post or two with "um." I tend to think of it as my thinking sound; never even occurred to me that others may interpret it as "you stupid asshole." Guess I'll switch my "ums" to "hmms."

                                                                                                        1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                          When we got married, my loving wife of 22 years always says one of my endearing qualities was/is my bluntness....she knows where I am coming from....sorry if some CHs don't get that...

                                                                                                          1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                            I think "hmm" is better. "Um" sounds like 'uh, duh" to me.

                                                                                                            1. re: monavano

                                                                                                              That's the fun of the internet . . . no facial expressions or tones of voice to cue what is being expressed. And no personal knowledge (people who know me know I wouldn't reply with "you stupid asshole" even if I was thinking it ;)

                                                                                                              I'll try to be cognizant of the "um" connotations in future posts.

                                                                                                              1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                "I'll try to be cognizant of the "um" connotations in future posts."

                                                                                                                Just tack on a Y in front of that um and you're covered...

                                                                                                                1. re: Servorg

                                                                                                                  Good suggestion Serv :) But I refuse to add "my" to the end.

                                                                                                                  1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                    Then I am guessing that O is a no GO too.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Servorg

                                                                                                                      Yep. I only use yummo when referring to delish sammies ;)

                                                                                                                2. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                  I always use "Sheesh" to imply "you stupid asshole".

                                                                                                                  1. re: grampart

                                                                                                                    I say "you stupid asshole"

                                                                                                                    and then the mods delete the post.

                                                                                                                    Sheesh

                                                                                                                1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                  "hmms."

                                                                                                                  My take on those who start with hmms is.....

                                                                                                                  I am/must be, a really a stupid asshole.....

                                                                                                                  1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                    Awww, c'mon man. I hear voices on these boards.

                                                                                                              2. Know what you mean; I'm still stopping by but don't get as much pleasure in speaking my piece anymore. I'm sure some posters are thrilled!

                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: coll

                                                                                                                  And what makes it worse, when you respond in kind to the arrogant morons, YOUR post gets deleted, not theirs.

                                                                                                                  1. re: sal_acid

                                                                                                                    Better to say nothing at all, no matter how hard that might be. I'm trying, with varying success.

                                                                                                                    1. re: coll

                                                                                                                      (sometimes, it's just too easy...)

                                                                                                                  2. I think much of the negative tone on these boards has to do jealousy....there are those who think they are the only ones who are right and definitely smarter than you....in life, choices, tipping, cooking, wit and etc....they clearly show a lack of respect for any one else, their thoughts and opinions.

                                                                                                                    They clearly resent the fact some are respected for their contributions and theirs are not.

                                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                      Yes, it's a little to personal to some.
                                                                                                                      Shame.

                                                                                                                      1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                        It's more than a little perosnal to some. It's like a battle for the death to see who can shout their opinion louder.

                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                          A personal word...
                                                                                                                          You are educated as I am an informed plumber...let it go, do not respond....just go to another board....
                                                                                                                          (this plumber went to law school) so what?

                                                                                                                      2. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                        I love you fourunder, but just because I can tell by #%^£€$@&'s posts that I despise them and everything they stand for in RL, doesn't mean I am jealous of them!

                                                                                                                        ;-p

                                                                                                                        1. Thank you mods and fellow posters...I have been on other forums that are dead or dying because of lack of good mods.
                                                                                                                          Since CH is not political,you have an easier task then some and should feel glad about that....Thank You!

                                                                                                                          1. This is probably the most boring, self-involved ever thread on CH.

                                                                                                                            15 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                                  OK. If we're submitting nominations, I'm going with the "best compliment" series of self-congratulations: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/915793

                                                                                                                                  And, pika, I'll accept that I may be self-involved. Hell, most of my life involves the thoughts and actions related to feeding myself. But, to call my OP "boring"? That hurt. Surely, you could open almost any thread, read the first few lines of text, and see how much more ennui the words must instill in the average reader.

                                                                                                                                  Please find another descriptor? Perhaps, "lyrically flatulent"? "Offensively over-important"? "Obnoxiously obvious and overtly offensive"? Even, "stupid" would have been more appropriate.

                                                                                                                                  Or, am I wrong entirely? Are you saying that considering "tone" in the expressions of the community is inherently monotonous?

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                      Yeah, you gotta love the Dean and Professor Emeritus of the Chowhound Cooking College, Meat Roasting School, calling out the "self-importance" of an opus of his own. It's like ol' man Darwin callin' "On the Origin of Species": "That silly essay".

                                                                                                                                      In the end, however, for anybody who doesn't recognize either, my overarching subplots and attempts at different ways of communication, or how others have helped further such "advances", please just take a breath and reread with such a concept in mind? After all, it's possible to provide a recipe in a story and a story with a recipe.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                        ...As for a recipe in a story and vice versa, that's where my twains will never meet. I like a good story, and I like a good recipe but not both together at the same time simultaneously.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                          Hat's off, Gio. You're certainly the type of soul who "gets" more than she "sees". Or at least, takes the time to "ask".

                                                                                                                                          Likewise, I left the Cave and have seen a lot. That old Greek predicted that guys like me would have no choice but to return and point out the frailties of the shadows on the wall.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                            Ah, but sometimes it's better to see those frailties and then accept the person for what he or she is, knowing that those very frailties are what endears that person to you. On the other hand... there are times when one takes a certain pleasure in pointing out a frailty or two.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                              To that end, Gio, I'll simply agree by noting that Sartre holds more tracks on my mental iPod than anyone else. Nevertheless, I'd never delete Plato's "Classic Album".

                                                                                                                                    2. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                                      Okay, that thread put me to sleep.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: pikawicca

                                                                                                                                    That's a rather interesting reply to a thread about a negative tone on the boards.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                          Third. One of my all time favorites.

                                                                                                                                    1. I especially enjoy the scolders and correctors and provers that your opinion is invalid and simply wrong, since they know otherwise in their less then humble opinion. I was just invalidated for my personal experience on a Paula Deen thread. Hey yaaaawwwl, aint that a kick in the payants!

                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                      1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                        " IMHO" is almost equal to the "Um..."
                                                                                                                                        ""IIRC" is rounding the bend

                                                                                                                                        1. re: kewpie

                                                                                                                                          how so? IIRC is "if I recall correctly" -- when I use it, it usually means "I think that's what it was, but this particular post isn't important enough for me to dig around and post the reference"

                                                                                                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                            That's how I use it. And I will preference something with IMO to make very clear that it's an opinion and not necessarily a verifiable fact.

                                                                                                                                      2. I am encouraged that people here still want to dissect all manner of food topics down to the micron level.

                                                                                                                                        I feel glad that I have a place to ask stupid questions about whether expired food should be eaten.

                                                                                                                                        I like that topics that bore me grow to hundreds of entries in a week's time. Seriously. What's for dinner is not my cup of tea, but it's segregated into discrete threads I can and do skip over. I know there's a wealth of information contained in each one, but I don't like chitchatty threads.

                                                                                                                                        And that is the crux of my frustration: the cronyism and divisiveness that accompanies chitchat. And, sorry to say I lay blame for this entirely at the feet of the moderators. This is the wave of the present, so I am trying to adjust my expectations and desires to the reality that is the new, 'cool' Chowhound.

                                                                                                                                        For the most part I am still happy here. That's not to say I like the trend of allowing chitchat to reign supreme. And, yes, I realize this is entirely a chitchatty thread ;~)

                                                                                                                                        60 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                          Most of the divisiveness that I see comes from the 'serious' posters, the ones who come to 'site talk' and complain about chitchat. I don't see chitchatters complaining about posters being too serious.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                            In regards to Chit Chat. .

                                                                                                                                            “People who love to talk food and theater are never at a loss for conversation.”
                                                                                                                                            James Beard (1903-1985)

                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                  Good question fldhkybnva. To use WFD threads for example, the "chitchat" actually generally brings us closer together. It reminds us that we are all humans and go through similar highs and lows in life.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                    That's a community. Diversity, not divisiveness.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                      I think that's the perception if you're part of the community. if you're not a regular part of WFD and you post there, it's not uncommon for your advice, comments and opinions to be overlooked and seemingly ignored. I don't want to call out a specific post/thread, but when two posters post similar information, and the poster who was addressed seems to make a specific point of thanking one poster and ignoring the other, it's perceived as divisive even if it's not meant that way. I'm a big girl and I can take it, and I don't need to be thanked for my contributions, because I know the information I post helps more people other than the poster I'm responding to.

                                                                                                                                                      But I think people on WFD who think they're part of this big inclusive community don't understand how little things come into play to make people who might want to contribute there feel like they are crashing someone else's party, and not bother posting there again.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Chris VR

                                                                                                                                                          Sorry you had that impression, Chris VR. I find the WFD thread to be the single-most friendly and inclusive on the entire board, save for very, very few exceptions.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                            I agree. I was intimidated to post initially but was quickly welcomed and wished I had participated earlier.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Chris VR

                                                                                                                                                            While I don't participate in the WFD thread, I enjoy reading it everyday. I like reading about what people are having for dinner, and of course there's always some useful knowledge and tips in that thread to be gained. I also enjoy it because of it's "tone." To me it's positive, warm and welcoming. Lots of seemingly happy people on that thread lending support, well wishes, etc to their fellow posters. I will also say that every time I see someone new post on there and they start their post with "This is my first time posting on WFD......" They are always greeted and welcome by at least a few regular posters on that thread.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Chris VR

                                                                                                                                                              Interesting perception, Chris. Yes, I'm a regular on WFD. And I see it as probably *the* most inclusive in including new posters. On the most current thread, three or four new-to-the-thread posters have joined in, and have been welcomed. They weren't shunned; each of them got a lot of recommendations on their initial posts, as well as welcome to WFD comments.

                                                                                                                                                              Not everyone gets thanked for a contribution; that would then just cause exactly what some don't like - excessive chit-chat and thanks! and +1 posts. Perhaps some folks don't know about the Edit capability to go back to say "Oh, and thanks ChrisVR!" Perhaps they've read the first post and thanked that person before reading the second post, and chose not to thank them too - to prevent just what some complain about. Who knows.

                                                                                                                                                              ETA: As for myself, I've drifted away from the Boston board, specifically *because* I don't eat out with the frequency with which others like you do. So I have nothing to contribute there. The Home Cooking board, while perhaps not everyone's style, *is* my style. While it may take focus away from what the original CH was all about - finding deliciousness in restaurants in your area - it's *still* about making deliciousness - just within your own home.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Chris VR

                                                                                                                                                                As one of the new posters on the WFD thread this week, I must respectfully disagree. I've been reading the threads for a while and have lways admired the sense of community and caring shown by all those who regularly post there, as well as found it incredibly helpful for inspiration and learning (so my dinners have evolved from more than grilled chicken on greens... every... single... night...).

                                                                                                                                                                So this week I thought maybe I could dip my toes in and say hello, and I've had nothing but positive responses. Of course I am not as "close" to the other posters as someone who may have been regularly posting and sharing stories together for much longer time, but I definitely do not feel like I am crashing. I hope you'll give it another chance!

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: sharebear

                                                                                                                                                                  Exactly, I've had rare if any experiences of feeling unwanted. I jumped in a year or so ago as you have and was readily welcomed.

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: Chris VR

                                                                                                                                                                  >>>if you're not a regular part of WFD and you post there, it's not uncommon for your advice, comments and opinions to be overlooked and seemingly ignored<<<

                                                                                                                                                                  Have you checked in recently? There are a number of new participants on WFD who have all been recognized and acknowledged. Quite frankly, if you thought some of your comments and opinions were overlooked or ignored that may be more a sign of needing some sort of personal validation and not a fault of the fine people that post on WFD. I hope you will give WFD another chance and not worry if everyone does not respond to one of your posts.

                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                Close groups on the web tend to breed divisiveness. Look, I'm not saying people should not strike up friendships, but when the virtual pileups happen it's usually helped along by people backing up their buddy with whom they were just chatting. That has been my observation.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                  None of the divisiveness around here is on the "chit chat" thread, there's no shouting and battles of wills and opinions as found on other threads which to me is divisive. The pileups are on threads about the price of ground beef and recipes in restaurants not in What's for Dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                    I'm not so sure about that, fldhky. I know at least one person who left the WFD thread b/c they were beaten up for having the audacity to say they did not like a particular type of cuisine.

                                                                                                                                                                    And this was a prime example of what a poster here describes as people "backing up their buddy (real or perceived)", and jumping on somebody's differing opinion.

                                                                                                                                                                    Of course, people who overdo that kinda shit are often sent on a little "offline vacation," which tends to mean a vacation from those toxic people for everyone else who is here to share thoughts on food. '-D

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                      I see, I guess I've missed those posts or as with others that I don't like I keep on moving down the age.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                        You probably did. It was a rather lengthy time-out that particular poster had to take.

                                                                                                                                                                        As I said -- people who can't help themselves but consistently attack others get suspended or banned.

                                                                                                                                                                        It's a good system.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                          Do you know if the poster was banned for a while or simply decided to take some time off for medical reasons, work issues, etc.?

                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                        "I know at least one person who left the WFD thread b/c they were beaten up for having the audacity to say they did not like a particular type of cuisine."

                                                                                                                                                                        And some people simply do not have a personality compatible with participating on an internet board. I have mentioned before the example of my elderly Mother.

                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                        and pretty much anything in Not About Food.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                          Not About Food- the rabbit hole of CHland.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, Not about food *and* general topics have a ton of threads where some are just *made* for light hearted, not too serious chit chat. How can you not chit chat on a thread asking about "feeding squirrels peanuts" or asking if "a hot dog is a sandwich"?

                                                                                                                                                                            If the negative posters show up on those "fun" threads, I hope the chit chatters get there first and run them out. Unfortunately......the negative posters just run to a tipping thread, Lol.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                          "but when the virtual pileups happen it's usually helped along by people backing up their buddy with whom they were just chatting."

                                                                                                                                                                          I have noticed examples of that as well, but it has never bothered me. Keep in mind that some people act as though they are still in high school. Cliques will form and people will back up the people in their clique regardless of what idiotic ideas their buddy espouses. If I were to say that the sun will rise in the east tomorrow, there is a certain poster here that would tell me I was wrong and her buddy would immediately click on the recommend button even though her buddy was incorrect. I just laugh it off and from talking with others on the board through e-mail they notice things like that among various people and just shake their heads.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                            Sure, like Lord of the Flies.
                                                                                                                                                                            Ralph: "Kill the pig. Spill his blood."
                                                                                                                                                                            And trust me, it's not just a guy thing.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                              Spill the wine dig that girl

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                I wish you would let me kill the pig, no you just make me squeal like one.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                  And you fall for it every time.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                                What kind of database do you use to keep track of cliques and posting buddies?

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                  I think it's called the human brain.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                    Maybe it's just me, but while I follow the discussion in various threads, I rarely keep track of who are buddies. For example, I recognize your name, but I couldn't say who your posting buddies are. But then I'm not that great with the names of real people.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                      for 9.95 Pay Pal Ill send you a flowchart (joking mods)

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                                                                                                                        Is this our kid posting?:) Very funny.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                            The caption of this New Yorker cartoon reads: "On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog."

                                                                                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                              Grey, you and I are of like mind on this.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                        I have never noticed "posting buddies" either. They might exist, but I haven't noticed them with that particular definition.
                                                                                                                                                                                        ..and not just to you Paulj, but....my thoughts....

                                                                                                                                                                                        Do they know each other IRL? Are they on the same regional boards? Or are they just in the regular group of top prolific posters across all the general boards?

                                                                                                                                                                                        I tend to only remember individual posters that always seem to want argument or debate and/or seem to rarely offer any substantial food contributions, or are here "bloviating" more than contributing. Those individuals stand out to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I can also identify some that have a sense of humor and like to have fun talking about food too. They frequently jump in and lighten things up and "chit chatty" or not, I welcome a bit of that. They are stand outs as well, and sometimes change "the tone" of a thread from naughty to nice.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I can't see posting buddies (as described) on the regular boards, but I do see similar thoughts on a topic vigorously supported or disagreed with by like minded hounds, of which many are regular posters (of course). That is the definition of a "clique" and it is a normal part of development in any community, online or off. Cliques change all the time though.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I was looking at some old threads ( 2000 to now) when searching for a type of food (on the home cooking board), and it really struck me how the group of regular posters changes dramatically every few years. If there are posting buddies here now, they won't be for long.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                                                                                                          I'm actually a "posting buddy" for hire, kind of like a discussion board escort. Whatever the occasion is I can chime in with you on any thread, I own a tuxedo, I'm perfectly adept to commenting on a thread about pairing the perfect meal with a 1986 Bertani Amarone, or about the best wings / beer combo at a local bowling alley.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I enjoy long leisurely discussions during a walk on a beach at sunset, or "quicky" chat's at an hourly rate motel during lunch hour. Whatever your discussion appetite is I can accommodate your chatting desires and discretion is always practiced.

                                                                                                                                                                                          When you need a posting buddy, keep me in mind, my rates run from hourly to flat monthly fee's depending upon your particular needs.

                                                                                                                                                                                          For references please email;
                                                                                                                                                                                          MGZ
                                                                                                                                                                                          Veggo
                                                                                                                                                                                          Caralinadawg
                                                                                                                                                                                          Linqua
                                                                                                                                                                                          C. Oliver
                                                                                                                                                                                          SaraAshley

                                                                                                                                                                                          "Jr's posting buddy's, always off topic all of the time"

                                                                                                                                                                                          Any money exchanged is for conversational purposes only, anything else is that is shared is arbitrary and between two consenting adults.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                            Good to know....but I only thought THAT kind of buddy for hire was only legal in Vegas..... ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                              Jr, I am willing to pay for what I get. Would you prefer payment in bitcoins or cuban money?

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                There are two Cuban currencies. Both are problematic, and each can be used only with certain types of merchants and transactions, and by natives or visitors. Communism is indeed a strange, strange system. There is still a black market for American currency, but it is tricky and risky.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                                  "Communism is indeed a strange, strange system."

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Which one isn't?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Servorg

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mine. I pay cash, always have.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Many think that is strange, also, but it works for me.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    If you're looking for an ATM machine in Cuba, you never should have left home and you are soon to have a really bad day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Fowler are you seriously trying to insult my intelligence? Everyone knows bitcoin is a bust and Cuban money is printed at the charmin factory. Please don't insult me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I don't trust the "recovery" either so years ago I invested heavily, everything for that matter, into Europe. Not that fly by night Euro-trash currency the "euro" but actually into a small European nation with it's own stable economy. Yep, all of Jr.'s money is invested in the Ukrainian hryvia.....what can go wrong in a peaceful nation like the Ukraine? Yes, I'm laughing all the way to the bank Fowler...........

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Now if you would like me to be your buddy, I'll email you my wire instructions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Trust me, the only thing you want from the Ukraine is chicken Kiev for dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Talk about a dish lost in time, when is the last time you have seen Chicken Kiev on a menu? Must be in the 80's Reagan scared the shit out of the commies so bad even Chicken Kiev ran for it's life.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                        George W. Bush said you can run, but you can't hide, and that applies to chickens. Putin is a heavy handed guy, so I expect chicken Kiev will return soon to a convenient restaurant near you, with fries and slaw for a popular price.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Jr, I should not have attempted to "low ball" you by offering bitcoins or Cuban currency for your services. I apologize and ask if you would instead be willing to accept a better offer of Greek or Puerto Rican T-Bills as payment for your fine buddy services. I will even throw in an MCI/WorldCom stock certificate to sweeten the deal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                        That's more like it! My momma didn't raise no dummy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                            The exception proves the fool?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: sedimental

                                                                                                                                                                                                    To the paranoid mind, there's a connection between everything and everybody :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I probally should hold off offering any sort of buddy services... might make people squimish

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Or they may get to meet Chris....

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I guess I should have added the disclosure "posting buddy services for chow's 18 years or older". Actually my daughter is 18 so that's out now, 25 and older? Ugghhh I don't know anymore, what's a guy to do if he can't live off his ass-ets?

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ask Ratso Rizzo advice on that one..it is out of my zone of experince... maybe open a peanut butter and jelly food truck that offers a jam of the month with a glass of exotic milk on the side?

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. I think a large part of what you're referring to is a byproduct of the mods decision to allow the chit chat, silly jokes and other totally off topic nonsense.

                                                                                                                                                                                      9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                        I don't understand why chit chat is always the only thing labeled as "off topic." I finally unsubscribed fro ma thread that transitioned from the price of ground beef to a circular argument about water in the west. The mods did nothing, it was completely off-topic and relentless and "nonsense."

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                          f, I just reread most of that thread and found nary a single argument. And the price of any food is frequently caused by environmental issues. No different than freezing temps in Florida, damaging the orange groves and the prices go up. I completely understand "unfollowing" a thread. I do it frequently when I'm no longer interested in what's being discussed. Perhaps the mods didn't find it "completely off-topic and relentless and "nonsense." Just my two cents of course.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                            I didn't label the chit chat as the only thing off topic. But it IS the only off topic talk that has been singled out as ok by the mods.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Edit to add: and said chit chat has overtaken this site like kudzu on an abandoned farm house.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                              cd, you make a good point. Just this morning I had a note from a mod, saying that they'd had to delete a post of mine cause they'd deleted the one I replied to and it then didn't make sense. All I can remember of that post is that it was a BIT off-topic. It was a thread I started YEARS ago about internal temp for cooking pork. It engendered a side topic about 'heritage' pork and commercially raised ones. Yeah, off-topic but not at all "chit chat."

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                I agree I think your post was just a spin off from the main topic which will happen on nearly any thread, we are humans after all. I think sometimes it strays too far but for the most part the "off topic" posts including the "chit chat" are a part of engaging with another person, one of the many reasons I like this site.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                  But c. oliver's post nicely encapsulates the maddening inconsistency with which moderation is applied.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Right. That bit of off-topic commentary got deleted but you can find threads that go flying off into a dozen (easily) bits of "nonsense." And they don't get deleted. I do continue to wonder if "hits" to build advertising is the name of the game.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Threads drift, it's a just a thing that happens, and we don't try to keep people narrowly to the original topic unless they drift into nastiness. It's enough for things to be relatively on-topic for the site for them to stay. We removed that particular post for reasons other than that it was off-topic. If we had felt that conversation was off-topic, we wouldn't have sent you your reply back to edit and repost.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jacquilynne

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks, Jacq. During the time that passed and when I got your note, obviously something happened that I never saw. Good to know cause I thought that was pretty interesting.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Hmmmmm! MGZ is bitching about everyone else's bitching. MGZ is a case of "hoist by his/her own petard."

                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Doctormhl1

                                                                                                                                                                                              Although, "For tis the sport to have the enginer Hoist with his owne petar". I don't think that's the case here. MGZ has given his opinion and has opened a discussion. The petard won't come back to get him, it will simply give fuel to the fire he started.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. I noticed you not you not being around.. and I do notice many of the posts have lost that "dinner table" conversation feel. Sometimes post have that annoying knuckle wrapping tone.In example" There was a thread about this 7 and 3 months ago" sorry if this sounds rude but way to cock block a new poster... Totally makes them feel unwelcome. Just answer the question. The information bar on the left will show them other threads on it. annnnnnyway....I know I have been snarky ..I have been deleated... but geeze people... I have also laughed at good natured jokes and have learned lots of interesting things...I like coming here to "talk" and do miss some of the conversational tones about food history and food memories of some of the threads.
                                                                                                                                                                                              EDIT:
                                                                                                                                                                                              after icing my knuckles I have re-read this and decided to let it stand. If you can't understand it....I think it has more to do with not recongnizing different styles of prose than my lack of using fomal testing grammar this evening.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. I don't recall such a cloud darkening in the virtual skies we share since the days in '08 when Jamie Dimon and his cronies got on their knees and unzipped Paulson's fly - "We will gladly pay you Tuesday for a few Billion today . . . ."

                                                                                                                                                                                                That is certainly not an appropriate entry for typical climate of this setting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. The majority of the posts on this thread exemplify the croneyism that the OP so prolixly decries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Makes me immediately think of three of my favorite quotes

                                                                                                                                                                                                    “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Anne Frank

                                                                                                                                                                                                    You must be the change you want to see in the world. - Gandhi

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Leo Tolstoy

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                      By croneyism on this thread, do you mean by the Mods? That the mods let some posts stand because they like the poster?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I could send flowers and chocolates to the mods in a feckless attempt to curry favor, it wouldn't work. But this thread has made me a better man with the addition, with credit to greygarious, of "prolixly" to my vocabulary!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                                          What address would you use?

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Back Room Power Brokers, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          123 World Chow Domination Blvd.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Metropolis USA?

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Servorg

                                                                                                                                                                                                            attn:
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Miss Nurse Mildred Ratched
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hades

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Don't read the NAF board. Problem solved.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Bob Martinez

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sure, let the inmates take over the asylum!
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Letting cooler heads prevail is stoopid.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference. —Mark Twain

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                              There's a lot more latitude given on those general topics boards, esp. the NAF board, than there is on the regional boards. I don't see that as changing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Complaining about it is like complaining about the weather. To be sure, I sometimes do it myself but I never expect God to listen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Bob Martinez

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Complaining about it is like complaining about the weather. To be sure, I sometimes do it myself but I never expect God to listen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                --> From your lips to God's ears?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                No, really, a great point.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Bob Martinez

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Wish it was so simple. Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide. My only safe zones are my local board 99% of the time, and gardening!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Not sure if this directly addresses your point, but my short answer is yes, I do think the tone has changed in the last couple years. Both more unpleasantness and more harmless but not really helpful chatter. As a poster, I would place myself in the vast middle ground between lurkers and "drive-byes" at one end and prolific, "known" posters at the other. I post semi-regularly on my local board and home cooking, and once in a while on the regional boards of places that I'm visiting. Sometimes I can't help myself and I wade into the morass that is the NAF board. I don't have "posting buddies" and I'm not really looking to make any; I don't flirt or banter or argue on the boards. I come here often for information and opinions beyond what I can get from people I know IRL or from random internet searches (and, I hope, to contribute some of the same to others) and to read whatever threads catch my eye even if they don't directly relate to my geographic area or interests. I avoid WFD and similar threads, and occasionally I get annoyed when a thread I was enjoying gets too heavy with banter or worse, sniping.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Only once have I had the experience of getting a response to a post that was so nasty in a personal way that I was actually sitting in my kitchen shaking, wondering what I had done to invoke such ire from a person I had never met for a posting on a food board. I sat for a bit deciding whether I should respond to it, ignore it or report it. By the time I had composed a measured response, someone else had apparently flagged the post in question and it was gone, and my faith in Chowhound was restored. But I'm still trying to avoid NAF.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: cookie monster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                The only time I ever went on NAF was 3AM when I couldn't sleep, to pass the time, but now I just read a book instead. NAF will never let you get back to sleep at the rate it's going!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: coll

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I do not subscribe to NAF but sometimes posts show up on the general home page and I feel myself being pulled in. It truly is my downfall but I absolutely know better and am ashamed when I give in and go there. The terrible part is I go there when I am tired and cranky, the absolute worst time for me to read controversial threads.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Could it also be because grumbling sorts of comments don't belong on subject boards, so some of us come here for a safe place to grouse?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'll admit - I've had my set-tos with a few people since I started on CH in the early 2000s, and have been deleted for some of it. Eventually I just flip my personal Ignore switch. I've gotten better at doing that, or would like to think I have. But I don't want an Ignore button on CH.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    For the most part, I don't mind the chit-chat; I participate in it on the WFD thread, and on the Top Chef recaps.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I take what I want from CH and leave the rest. But the cannoli comes with me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. I think it's boredom. More than half of the country has been buried in snow and ice for the past three or four months, and they're cooped up inside, have run out of things to write about, so start fights.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: EarlyBird

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Isn't this why there are so many autumn babies? I'm a Virgo.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: EarlyBird

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I suggested this upthread but was reminded that some are angry yearlong.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Using a profiling tool (re. a deleted 'ignore button' post) I looked at recent traffic on several of the Chow boards. It was interesting to note that some of the most prolific posters on 'Site Talk' this past week were also prolific on 'General Topics'. One familiar poster had a 3x lead on GT.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I was the most prolific poster on Media at a massive 24 posts.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Isn't there some old saying about pointing a finger, and 3 pointing back?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            But everybody seems to forget the donut holder, the thumb.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Truly neutral.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. As a newbie (less than a year) my observations are thus:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            CH is extremely cliquey. If you're a newbie, you will rarely receive a response, and usually those responses will treat you as if you are a dolt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            'Hounds tend to be elitists. This is saddening, as good food is had in both lowbrow and highbrow situations and institutions. 'Hounds complain...a LOT...about food which they deem to be substandard, which often isn't even the case. There seems to be a lot of scorn for "trends" even when the food is good stuff, just hyped at the moment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            There are a lot of good people with interesting, helpful info on here. But the tone seems going more towards those who use food as a way to feel better about themselves and insult others. While I'm new, I don't believe that's what the original intent of this board was.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            43 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Since you ARE new, I think your comments are quite important. You've not been corrupted...and I'm not putting sideway, smiley icon behind that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  >>>Hounds tend to be elitists.<<<

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wow. I am a beer and a grilled brat, fart and belch kind of person and even I do not think Hounds (in general) are elitists.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      When did I claim elitist equated to "high brow" or even "expensive"???

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It seemed to me that you were saying that "elitists" are the opposite of "a beer and a grilled brat, fart and belch kind of person." Sorry if I made an assumption.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Well you know what they say about people that draw assumptions...:-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          No worries, You have made some very good points in this thread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Your story is anecdotal based on your experience, as is mine. I love both pedestrian food and more refined foods. I don't treat people rudely because of their preference, though, which I seem to see a lot of on the threads these days. And the cliques are definitely there. It's definitely off-putting to newbies and discourages them from posting. Again, purely my experience.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I am fairly sure there is nothing I can say to change your view that the fine people here are "elitists". All I can hope is that you give the folks here a second chance and maybe get to know them a bit before you tar and feather them while calling them elitists.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'd like to think that Boston doesn't have to do all the heavy lifting. That the rest of us can be a little more "kind and gentle."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Excellent point, c oliver. Perhaps you would like to change and set the example for the rest of the board? I'm in if you are!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Fowler, I got BFL'd for a couple of years. What you're seeing IS warm and fuzzy :) Or at least more tolerant.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What is BFL'd? Please do not respond if it involves something that happens in a prison cell.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Banned for life. Only with great groveling and many promises to TRY to behave have I re-entered the sancto santorum (did I spell that right?).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I don't think we are elitists and I'm truly sorry you feel that way. When I was a newbie it reminded me a lot of my time in prison.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There were cliques, them vs. us, fights in the lunch room, foul language and much more. Just like in prison i took a spoon from the cafeteria brought it to my cell and late at night when everyone was asleep I quietly sharpened the spoon into a sharp edged tool.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I knew if I wanted recognition and respect it was going to take more than the few dozen cigarettes I snuck in my anal cavity for me to get it so I prepared.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Back then the OP of this thread MGZ was the big man on our local cell block, known as The Dirty Jerzy block. Everyone had to give him their desert in dinner and when outside for rec you didn't walk by his area unless you had business with the man. I just sat and watched, day after day, while night after night I sharpened my "skill".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The day came when my hard work was going to pay off......I saw my opportunity and I took full advantage of it......I ran across the yard when his bodyguard wasn't watching and with my skilled work in hand I lunged for him, falling just short at his feet I fell. At first alarmed and angered by my sudden intrusion when he looked into my hand a small smile crossed his face. He kicked it out of my hand to get a better look at my work and the smile grew larger as he read "MGZ Rules" that I carved in a bar of soap with the knife I made. He bent down and picked up that sculpture and said "boy that's some mighty fine work, you got good hands boy" he grabbed my hand "and so soft too" he nodded to his body guards who lifted me to my feet where he said "you got a pretty smile too Jr, we're going to be special friends" and ever since then everyone has accepted me!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            BostonLover, as others have noted, your thoughts are VERY welcome. Perhaps, in a way, precisely the kind of notions I originally hoped to elicit without clearly being aware of it. Before I say anything else, please take this away (it's sorta the Golden Rule here): Bark how you wanna bark, when you wanna bark, and simply try to cover your ears when the time comes - just try not to wipe your ass on the carpet under the dining room table, no matter what has gotten stuck to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I am, admittedly, an elitist. I hold myself in very high esteem. I am brutally opinionated about food - from the table scraps I bury in the yard to the undersized bites I forego paying my cable bill to try - but, my words are not Gospel and nobody but me has ever seen me walk on water. You have my cordial invitation to call me an asshole or piss on my hydrant. Moreover, you have my invitation to do the same to anyone who seems "rude", but first try to sit back and see if maybe what sounded like a growl was really a yip-howl.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Nevertheless, I love bein' dropped off to play here in Doggie Day Care. I love when a new pup shows up wondering where to finds the good bones in the yard or which keeper has the Beggin' Strips in her pocket or how to go about gettin' her full belly tickled. I've got big teeth, but when you look closely, you'll see that years of gnawing has rounded their tips - I've never even bruised a duck I carried outta the water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sure, there's some unfriendly curs here, but you're a 'hound. Stick your nose in the Alpo and wag your tail. If another moans too much, try nudging the bowl in his direction and coming back in a few. In the end, there's a lot of half empty jars of peanut butter out there and mostly just kindly mutts who are willing to share tips about getting the lids off - no cliques, just a pack in which some have gotten used to the smell of the butts of a bunch of others.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The thing is, BostonLover, you find cliques on any message board. It's inevitable. The early adopters of any message board form a bond that is often hard for a newbie to cut through to join in the reindeer games, but it's very rare that it's elitist.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              If someone new posts on the Boston board and asks "Where's the best hot dog in the city?" and hasn't done some previous research to see the countless threads on the Boston CH board, they'll get a few responses. But perhaps not as many if they also add "I've tried Speeds, Fred's Franks in Wakefield, and Top Dog in Rockport. Anything better than those three places?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Chowhound helps those that helps themselves.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If someone new asked about hot dogs, I'd offer my opinion. I don't tend to pick and choose who is worthy of an answer, nor do I think most posters. Why should a new poster jump thru hoops and be vetted for their research abilities, before welcoming them with a simple answer of your own life experience?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I can only suggest that over time you'll learn to ignore those that have personalities that just aren't your style - which is why in my opinion this whole thread is very ironic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That said - you'll also find the same people who get upset about people posting threads that they feel have already been covered will also complain when you reply to or try to revive an old thread. With some people you can't win but others will share your enthusiasm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Personally if I see a topic which has been discussed ad nauseam on my local board I will often ignore it. At most I will suggest they do a search for it........re-hashing the same discussion over and over again is more a pet peeve of mine than chit-chat banter. Of course I'm only speaking for myself but I think Linda was expressing similar feelings in her post.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "At most I will suggest they do a search for it"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And that is a post that will immediately get removed if it comes to the attention of the moderators.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It's not a vetting of research experience or jumping through hoops. Where you got that from my response, I have no idea. If you want to offer your response if someone asks "Where is the best hot dog in the city?", feel free to do so.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      But knowing *what* a poster has tried helps other responders. It's often asked when someone posts a generic query "So what have you tried that you like/dislike so we can tailor our responses to what you're looking for?" If someone said "I don't like the snap of the casing on the hot dogs at Speeds", that helps others know the poster doesn't want that particular characteristic in their hot dog, and they can offer their recommends that fits into their desires.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Otherwise, 20 people say "Oh, Speeds has the best hot dog!" and the poster could potentially go away saying "Well, I don't like Speeds Dogs, so forget this..."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        But didn't Speed retire? And didn't his successor die? So why would 20 chow hounders in the know send them to a truck that no longer is?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I hope Linda doesn't hurt herself banging her head on her keyboard in frustration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chowhound rule #27 from A Few Good Men

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Downey: What did we do wrong? We did nothing wrong!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dawson: Yeah we did. We were supposed to fight for people who couldn't fight for themselves. We were supposed to fight for Willy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks for that...no idea what you mean by it, however.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Reach for it and you'll see it carolinadawg!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If a new poster comes t0 chow hound with a question, but doesn't know the best way to ask the question, or doesn't know how to research the boards to see if anyone has ever asked about - for example - where to get the best lobster in Greater Boston, is it not our obligation to help them, when they could not help themselves, rather then ignore them, scold them, and let them end up like Willy, dead to the forums that didn't reach out with a friendly paw?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ohhhhhh yeah then ignore my post about rule #72, I thought we were just going to bomb all the newbies. Sorry my bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Any of us can be a newcomer if we ask a question on regional board that we don't normally haunt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    An awkward question that I often see on the Seattle board is: 'Im a CH from NYC (or SF, LA etc) and visiting Seattle for 3 days. Where should I go for the best/unique/extraordinary etc dining?'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Regulars can get tired answering that sort of question.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Be the change you want to see in this world. Nobody is stopping you from rolling out the newbie welcome wagon.. I'd love to see more friendly, helpful posts on the Boston board. The more friendly and willing to engage with both new and older posters we all are, the more chow discussion we're going to see there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Chris VR

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think a lot of us want new posters to do a little work but I have looked back at some of my very early posts and been embarrassed by how *I* didn't do any work either. Just a couple of days ago a CH posted asked for places to eat in Rio, where we visit at least once a year. I compromised by giving him a fave place of ours, along with a link to a thread, as well as suggesting that s/he do some reading and narrow it down a bit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I will often respond to non searching newbies who ask w/o having searched with a link to a thread I've searched up, and a recco to check additional threads on the side of the page. If they haven't furnished such info, I'll suggest mentioning what types of places and budget to get better reccos.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I don't want to bark a gruff greeting at newbies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, I'll sometimes give new users a link to an older thread that I know has really good info, but now that I think about it, I wonder if it comes off as me dismissing them. I'm going to try harder to be a lot more friendly about it, so they don't think I'm trying to give them a brush-off.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "If they haven't furnished such info, I'll suggest mentioning what types of places and budget to get better reccos."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And that is what I meant when responders ask for more specifics as to what the poster is looking for. If they have tried something in the area that would give some insight, it's always helpful to mention so as to give better responses more closely tailored to what they're looking for.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Chowhound is a give-and-take. There will always be the fly-by posters who are asking one-off questions, don't come back and review, don't give their thanks. It's the name of the game on Internet message boards.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              But if you give a little (saying that you've searched and haven't found what you're looking for or that you've tried X, Y, and Z and are looking for something that is as good or better), you're more likely to get more back in return.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I don't think its appropriate for the mods to use the recommend button.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I think it's like Chowhound rule # 72 from Apocalypys Now;

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: You can either surf, or you can fight!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Willard: Are you crazy, Goddammit? Don't you think its a little risky for some R&R?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: If I say its safe to surf this beach, Captain, then its safe to surf this beach! I mean, I'm not afraid to surf this place, I'll surf this whole fucking place!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: Charlie don't surf!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: Smell that? You smell that?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Lance: What?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: Napalm, son. Nothing else in the world smells like that.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          [kneels]
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: I love the smell of napalm in the morning. You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for 12 hours. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn't find one of 'em, not one stinkin' dink body. The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          [sniffing, pondering]
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: victory. Someday this war's gonna end...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          [suddenly walks off]

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kilgore: What the hell do you know about surfing, Major? You're from goddamned New Jersey!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Does that clear it up for you Dawg?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I think you should stick to posting entire song lyrics on this site instead of extended movie dialogue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There are these things called "examples". Sometimes they're not to be taken literally or in the moment but are used just for illustrative purposes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This is one such time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Excellent reply Linda! On the regional boards I participate on it is not uncommon for a newbie to post something like, "My wife and I are going to be in town for 3 days. Where do you recommend we eat?" My standard reply is something like, "Please help us help you and let us know where you are staying, what type of food you like/dislike, will you have transportation, what is your budget, etc."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Often the poster will never bother to respond with the details of what they are looking for and probably scratches their head wondering why they never received any recommendations for where to eat!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: BostonLover

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                " If you're a newbie, you will rarely receive a response, and usually those responses will treat you as if you are a dolt."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm puzzled by that observation. My own tendency is to respond to the content of a post, not to who the poster is. I'm sure the many people, both old and new, that I have not responded to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Some people are just better (or have learned to better) at getting responses. They might ask good questions. They might give good answers (or reviews) and thus garner 'thanks'. Or they might be wrong, and get corrections. Or provocative.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I just got my 7-year CH lapel pin. (just kidding...) but frightfully, and to the chagrin and lament of my CH detractors, I am now in year 8. I wasn't sure I would live this long, and my heirs express mixed sentiments. Some of them fake it well, but I can tell.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. Maybe it's not about validity, but about page views and SEO.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Maybe CH wants to tolerate non-sense because they think it will generate more page views in the short term and increase their SEO across the board, rather than recognizing it will hurt them long term as all the non-sense becomes unbearable and more people leave outright.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                49 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've been using the 'All Discussions' tab on my profile page as my primary tool for following CH. I also use it to identify other poster's home boards. But I just discovered the 'posts' tab. That gives a snap shot of a person's posting habits - especially my own.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Looks like I'm not as frequent a poster as you (c oliver), but I'm long winded, even when it comes to trivial topics like hot dogs and sandwiches. May be I need to hang around the Ontario board to learn the art of a snappy reply. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm a very frequent poster but my replies are almost always short. Unless a restaurant or a dish really blew my mind.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        One thing that I'm trying to understand is the difference between your short good posts, and the 'chitchat' that juxtxpete finds objectionable. Is there an objective difference, or is it all in the eye-of-the-reader?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Same "sentences" posted over and over and over again in multiple threads on different/every topic by a few specific individuals.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There was more here but it was deleted.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Well, for me, it IS objective. For instance, here's a quote from MW upthread:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Could you explain why the affordable care act is so expensive for my mother?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Because I could eat lunch with one hand and scroll with the other, I read the full page of My Posts and see nothing of the sort.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I wish I could give you more examples of not just off-topic but total chit chat without a syllable that relates to food but then I'd be getting close to naming names which, quite reasonably, isn't allowed. And one like that too frequently, IMO, engenders even more, people wanting to "out wit" each other.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            PS: Thanks for calling my posts "good." :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Truth be told, four of those eight examples of chitchat posts I used were posted by you in recent months.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I apologize if this hurts your feelings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                LAUGH. OUT. LOUD. :) Well, I know it's not the one I quoted above since my mother died in 1975. Doesn't hurt my feelings at all. I'll never say I never have an off-topic moment but they're fewer all the time. And mine seem to never generate long subthreads. I'm obviously not clever enough.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: justxpete

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Actually the opposite would be true in the SEO world. Google and other search engines rank results by signal to noise. The more noise and irrelevant info, the lower a site drops. Given that 2/3s of visits to this site originate on search engines, Chow.com is challenged to get its food content recognized through the increased noise in threads. Right now, visitors to the site drop out when they land on a page that doesnt answer their question, whether for apparent snarkiness, chatter or poor answers. The public stats show the site declining in this important metric, and that translates to less revenue. The "workshop" format that hides lower relevance posts seems to be one step to addressing this problem, is what it looks like to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm really sorry that it's come to this. The balance point has shifted too far and the growing noise ratio is killing the viability of this site.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That's true in part - but I think CH mistakenly believe page views trump content. Or at least it's a possible reason for how much they've seemed to embrace completely inane and irrelevant chatter. I essentially said the same.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: justxpete

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          justxpete, let me ask you this question sincerely, this thread is this a fair example of the type of posting that has annoyed you with your home board, Toronto? Is this the kind of stuff that motivated you to create the "ignore button" thread?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          If not, is this still calm to you? If you can use this tread as an example of what you do or don't find troubling about Chow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            As I implied when responding to Melanie this morning, there is not a single post on this thread that is not helpful in answering the instant inquiry. They are all, in fact, useful and "on-point".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              MGZ, I think you may want to reread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I have, though I didn't.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Perhaps, my friend, you should revisit how I asked what I asked? You have been here with me long enough to feel how I "speak".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I respect the lightness of heart you have shown, but, remember, often answers come from both what is in the lines, as well as what's left in between 'em. And a conscious soul, seeking to have his questions resolved, must take EVERYTHING from outside to process inside.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: justxpete

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Melanie Wong is a model poster when measured by high signal to noise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Did I suggest otherwise? Not sure what you're implying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Melanie, I follow you faithfully. You keep me connected to my home county of Sonoma and the Bay Area. ( living near Lodi now). I read and follow you because the quality of your posts are concise, accurate,detail oriented and to the point. You are the gold standard. Most of us realize and appreciate that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "I'm really sorry that it's come to this. The balance point has shifted too far and the growing noise ratio is killing the viability of this site."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What's killing the viability of this Site is the notion that it is ever going to get the volume of traffic that Yelp or Food Network does. I mean, this place is never going to be Facebook with assholes like me making vague, Existential literary references and drafting six paragraph inquiries that boil down to nothing more than "Are you guys alright?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Maybe it's time to focus more on the health and value contained within a small, dedicated, knowledgeable community than the wealth and valuables to be taken from a large, transient, ignorant mass?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                CH doesn't aim to have large traffic of masses like Yelp and what used to distinguish it was that it was the small dedicated knowledgeable community. But, it's much less like that and becoming more like the Yelp you describe. The chatter has exponentially increased over the years and yet those important nuggets get smaller and smaller. People providing those nuggets are leaving and what is left are those only interested in chat. Newbies come in and are faced w/ chat--those w/ something to offer move on, those who want to chat remain so it only gets worst. Newton was right.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chowser & Dawg......I came across this site really by accident, but being a "food guy" and being in and around restaurant, club, bar business most of my life it intrigued me enough to stick around. (I know how happy that makes you) You both mention that many of the providers of valuable information have moved on, my question is; where have they gone? Is there another bastion of serious food discussion out there that compares to what Chow "was" in your opinion(s)? It seems most here seem to thumb their nose at sites like Yelp (never been on or contributed to that site) so where are those who have been run off going?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Just curious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think they have gone to (1) nowhere, they just are out there finding and enjoying food and not posting about it because there's nowhere worth posting to and (2) writing their own food blog.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      So you would say that Chow is still the "Best" of what is out there for the serious food person? Would that be correct? I'm not trying to put words in your mouth.........

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Its better than any other site that I know of, but it ain't as good as it used to be. And if it keeps declining, its going to continue to lose the good posters, imo.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "And if it keeps declining, its going to continue to lose the good posters, *imo*."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Does that mean we'll be left with nothing but evil posters? Those who post what you subjectively find to be disagreeable thoughts? Those who post in subjectively disagreeable ways?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            No, no, and no. I'm pretty sure you're smart enough to correctly analyze and interpret my simple statement, but maybe not...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            You did get one concept right...what I posted IS subjective. Thus my use of the shorthand "imo", meaning in my opinion. Opinions are necessarily subjective.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              '"And if it keeps declining, its going to continue to lose the good posters.'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              B.I.N.G.O.!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Happy posters vs. Negative posters..
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It's the negative posters that are making the happy posters leave.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And they (negative posters) don't have a clue that they are the problem.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Beach Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                "It's the negative posters that are making the happy posters leave."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Could you provide the data that supports that please? I'm quite interested in the topic and haven't done any research I admit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Say what you would like to say about me otherwise, but if nothing else I am a happy poster and if I were to leave in the immediate future, it would be due to negative posters and nothing else. So there is one small sample of data for you. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: Beach Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  So, if one has a bad experience at a restaurant, for example, they should refrain from posting about it on here because that would be considered negative? Its acceptable to only post about a restaurant experience if it was positive? Or if one has a negative experience, is it your expectation that they should post a positive review in order to avoid bringing a negative vibe to the site?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I try never to post anything 100% negative, you can always find something nice to say as a postscript if you try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hey! I have an idea. What if a single post could have no more than, say, ten lines? That wouldn't eliminate drivel but at least it wouldn't take up as much "space."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It would be interesting to know if new CHs are leaving the site sooner or in larger numbers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Actually, what's killing this site IS "(expletive deleted) like (you) making vague, Existential literary references and drafting six paragraph inquiries that boil down to nothing more than "Are you guys alright?""

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It is those posts that are, in fact, turning this site into Facebook, with (as chowser very correctly pointed out) the drivel drowning out the real food talk, running off those who actually have something worth saying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I've said this before (maybe on this thread?) that I find FB more concise and friendler but not silly. And I think the fact that one can't reply directly back to a poster helps with that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "And I think the fact that one can't reply directly back to a poster helps with that."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sorry but I'm confused, are you saying you can't reply directly back to a poster on Facebook? If so I'm sorry but you are way off base, you can respond directly to anyone who posts anything on Facebook. You can also reach out to them directly even if they haven't posted anything. Facebook is a user to user interface.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              If I've misunderstood your post, my apologies in advance.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Uhhh yeah. Unlike this site were there is no private message or chat option. Far more opportunity on FB to communicate than on here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: SaraAshley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I can't remember if CH has a "mission statement" but if they do it probably has nothing to do with non-food related communication. And anyone can put an email contact in their profile and chat to their heart's content. I got a number of emails just last night that had nothing to do with food so they didn't clutter up the site. Everyone wins in that situation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The "Posting Guidelines" say this:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Focus on Food

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There are lots of food-related subjects to talk about and lots of angles to approach them from, so there shouldn’t be any shortage of things to discuss. Of course, discussions drift, and sometimes issues that are only tangentially about food come up. Try to stay focused on food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'll repeat the last sentence: Try to stay focused on the food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pretty sure that doesn't include lots of inside jokes, silly poems apropos of nothing, song lyrics, personal expressions of affection, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I said nothing to the content of the communication. I was simply stating that there is more opportunity for communication on FB versus here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: SaraAshley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        But it's a different site with a different goal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    What I'm (poorly) trying to describe is that, yes, you can reply but it doesn't fall right below the person you're replying to. And, yes, you get an email. I think it limits some unproductive back and forth. I recently became part of a 'closed group' and not sure how long I can stand it. It's what I don't like about CH. All the silliness. I don't go to FB or CH to be entertained. I have RL sources for that.