The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

I really want TFL to be an awesome site: just here me out

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mikeofaustin's picture

I really want TFL to be an awesome site: just here me out

With all the crazy economies and such, people are really in a bind.  I've experienced that recently with  it's a site mostly for us old people that swing a metal detector and talk about it.  However recently, the site owner sold his site and there is no longer a forum that us old people/ I can go to, to meet my firends and talk about what ever crazyness crosses my mind.   

   I remember this site from a long time ago, as being a place for very respectable people, and I'm thinking that perhaps we can make this into the next 'Friday night drive in", where everyone goes to to talk about current events, or even what ever is on their mind.  This might sound silly at first, but I truly thing that, that makes a web site. as much people as possible coming together to talk about what they are equally interested in.

The reason I shot my vocal chords out in this forum, is that I didn't  see another forum that listed "crazy peope, Everything else, what everers on you mind, ...etc" you get the idea.  I remember this site as being a great site.. but I really want to make it a site where people come to talk about "doesn't fit anywhere else" forum.    


perhaps I'm late in the game, and there already is a forum with that in mind, but to the host of this site, it wasn't immediately obvious to me.  And I would really like to see a "everything else that doesn't fit" forum.  Of course, this is your site, but I'd like you to test that theory just a bit. Perhaps you could create a forum where "everything else" goes.  Because as you already know, people have a lot more to talk about that yeast.  :)

pmccool's picture

I may be missing your point.  It sounds like you may be looking for the electronic equivalent of the old general store front porch where people can sit around talking about anything and everything under the sun.  If that is more or less your intent, I think this site's objectives may be too narrowly focused to make you happy.  As the banner at the top of the page says, this is a site with "news and information for amateur bakers and artisan bread entusiasts".

If bread (or cakes or cookies or pies or tarts or other baked goods) is what interests you, then jump right in.  The inmates are a generally friendly bunch and willing to offer help, encouragement, insights, or plain old opinions about all things relating to bread.  For most of the members, it is an awesome site already because it fits their passion or needs regarding bread.  For those who might want to swap lies about their recent fishing trips or debate the finer points of 9mm versus .40 caliber cartridges or talk about the deficiencies of today's youths, not so much.  But then, it wasn't set up for those kinds of topics. 

Unless Floyd Mann, owner of the site, changes his mind about site content and focus, I fear you may find us to be rather boring and, perhaps, monomaniacal.  However, if you want to talk about bread, pull up a chair and chime in.

Best of luck with your search.


LindyD's picture

MikeofAustin, TFL already IS an awesome site precisely because it stays on the topic its members are interested in:  bread and artisan baking.

You should look into Yahoo Groups, which would allow you create the "anything goes" type of forum you had in your treasurenet group.

I wish you well.

DerekL's picture

Indeed.  I've seen more than one site go from 'awesome' to 'run far away, far, far away' precisely because they added a "discuss all the stuff not related to the topic of the site" forum.  That drags in politics and religon and all manner of other topics that cause hurt feelings, anger, etc... etc...

dstroy's picture

I think it's highly unlikely that we shall pursue the route of "anything goes" simply because what makes the site run smoothly is keeping the tone respectful and generally speaking, eliminating much of the noise that other forums with free-for-all discussions generate.

As it is, with the amount of traffic that this site gets, I can assure you that it's a pretty time-sucking operation to weed out spammers which seem to have absolutely nothing better to do than to join bread sites and talk about the random stuff they're selling. If we didn't do that, you'd have to spend an hour for every 10 minutes of reading to find a post that wasn't just a sales pitch, and who has time for that?

And then, there's always the stickier situations when you get bully-type shut-in personalities that may be talking about bread, but marginally, and at the expense of insulting or offending virtually everyone else on the site. There are lots of sites where topics are more broad where you can have plenty of off-topic/whatever-topic-you'd like discussions.  Ning, Yahoo Groups, community groups on Livejournal... these are just a couple examples...but there are probably hundreds to choose from.

Without any sory of moderation at all, this would just become another one of *those*, and that's not what either of us want to be spending time maintaining, because even with a topic as narrow as breads, dicsussions can spiral into unpleasant loops if left unmoderated, and we'd like to keep these forums civil and respectful.

Opening up the topics of discussion to "anything" would also open up liabliity problems for us as website moderators - and frankly, I'm not up for being held in any way responsible for the discussions that might go on in a forum where the topics are open to "whatever crazy ideas" folks may feel like talking about. ;) (Technically, we're not "responsible" for individual discussions on here, but we can and do reserve the right to come and cut short discussions that cross into the realm of spam, blatent commercial solicitations, labor grievances, personal attacks and insults, and other wildly-off-topic or offensive content.) Y'all are fine though, if we mostly stick to the baking talk.

Floydm's picture

Others have already said it quite well. TFL  is already an awesome site with great community.  The site has worked so well precisely because of its narrow focus and the moderation (originally mine but increasingly community driven) that have kept us from driving off into a ditch. We simply do not have the staff (any) and infrastructure to take this from a highly specialized site to a general purpose discussion site in any way that won't mess up the current value of the site.  If you know of a venture capitalists who'd be interested in funding such a project, by all means, give them my name.

Does what is discussed here encompass all aspects of any of our lives?  Certainly not.  I don't think any single site does, but there are plenty of other that try to.  Check out Yahoo Groups or Facebook.  Even  your local newspaper's website may have a good forum that can provide  that "Friday night drive in" experience you are looking for.

Good luck!

Bigears's picture

If I want an outlet for a vast cornucopa of ideas and opinions on general topics there are plenty of them throughout the Internet.  I participate in TFL because it is dedicated to bread making (even though it does have some forum topics that extend somewhat beyond that genre).  I think it's fine (a perhaps the best of its kind) just the way it is.  If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Frequent Flyer's picture
Frequent Flyer

...on several forums without loss of focus.  There's even a group of grumpy Texans talking BBQ that have a section for general discussion on things not BBQ.  A trout forum and an outdoors forum round out the list of those I have spent a lot of time in.  I also am a host on 2 forums (part of one large community) that I feel is barely succeeding in managing the "whatever goes" forum - at the expense of several hosts.  The reason some work and others don't, I think, is the size of the communities.  The larger it is, the more difficult it is.

So, Mike, it seems the group here is not in favor of it.  I'm fine with it, but a whole batch of folks (several at the top) are not. 

I think asking is always appropriate.

neoncoyote's picture

a forum titled "Off Topic" for precisely the purpose the original poster is asking about...?