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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2017 12:55 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2552
Alexander D. Mitchell IV wrote:

(And, please. Spare those of us who have been here a while the repeat chorus of how badly these places treat your pieces and how they're not willing/able to pay you what you think they're worth.)


And you wonder why the place is dying?


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2017 3:15 pm 

Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:45 am
Posts: 75
I have been on this forum from probably the beginning, and was a subscriber to the late "Locomotive & Railway Preservation" magazine. I don't post very often, but I probably check in here at least 6 days a week. I am one who still find the site very useful, and I wouldn't be coming here if I didn't think so. I love to hear factual information on the status of projects. I don't like flame wars or having a situation where someone thinks they are the final authority of what is allowed, or worthy of posting. I love to read the updates from Strasburg and other places that are truly inspiring.

I don't mind, and in fact I welcome discussion of what is going on in a various project, even if it requires airing dirty laundry. How many museums have locomotives in "exploded view", but continue to move on to other projects. This has a negative effect on "Preservation", so even if it comes across as critical, it has to be related to preservation. Learning from one mistake will help others from doing the same thing. How did this happen? "Oh, well, that project was started by John and Fred, and they lost interest!" "Sam and Steve were working on this project and they ran out of money." These failures teach museums that they need a plan on how to deal with this kind of situation. If Sam, Steve, John and Fred wanted to work on a project, the museum leads the project and assigns them to work together, with a plan to bring it to completion or at least leave it better than it was then when they started on it. These discussions only should be moderated when they involve personal attacks or stray far from the topic at hand. The recent brush up over the 2100 should be a learning opportunity to figure out best practices and move forward.

Steven A. Carlson


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2017 3:33 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2004 9:21 pm
Posts: 99
RyPN is a priceless resource for those of us in the preservation field to get our questions answered by some of the nation's foremost experts in the field who have "been there and done that." Do you want to know where to get a 250W, 32V bulb for your steam locomotive? Do you want to know where to get replacement batteries for your Diesel? Do you want to know the possibilities pro and con for various on-board toilet facilities? Look at past postings on RyPN or ask the question.


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2017 4:06 pm 

Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:24 pm
Posts: 113
With all the valuable information available on this site, if it were to all go "poof" and dissapear (and it's definately possible in this day and age) is the data backed up somewhere? If not, could it be backed up, preferably in multiple places?


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2017 6:39 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 2:34 am
Posts: 449
Location: Port Jefferson, NY (LIRR MP 57.5)
John E. McNamara wrote:
RyPN is a priceless resource for those of us in the preservation field to get our questions answered by some of the nation's foremost experts in the field who have "been there and done that." Do you want to know where to get a 250W, 32V bulb for your steam locomotive? Do you want to know where to get replacement batteries for your Diesel? Do you want to know the possibilities pro and con for various on-board toilet facilities? Look at past postings on RyPN or ask the question.


Well said, John.

I'm a relatively new member of RYPN (<3 years I believe) but I try to visit every day and I find the information and expertise shared here to be invaluable.

-Philip Marshall


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2017 10:24 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 10:49 am
Posts: 668
I have been here quite awhile, and I have actually met some of you, and e-mailed others.. I love RYPN because I have never not gotten an answer to a question, and it thrills me when I can help someone else answer a question.

Yes, I was here before the Rowland fiasco, and I think this is a place not only worth saving, but worth fighting for.


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:59 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:42 am
Posts: 1734
Location: Seattle, WA - Land of Coffee
I too think that RYPN still very much has and fulfills a useful purpose.

I know that I have not been posting nearly as often as I was just a few years ago (I hope that changes; those "Surviving Car" threads have been collecting digital dust, unfortunately), but I still check in here every day to keep up on goings on and to pitch in with information when I can.

Thanks to all of those who are currently, or in the past have been, involved in the moderation, editing, operation, financing, and upkeep of this great resource. You do us all a great service.

_________________
Ted Brumberg


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 3:17 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:52 pm
Posts: 914
Hi,

A saying from somewhere I recall: Change is the only constant.

RyPN is evolving and changing into something else that is still useful.

Baldwin was the BEST steam loco builder but could not evolve into something useful with the coming of the diesel.

Recall the frequently repeated "best buggy whip maker" saying.

Doug vV


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 3:34 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:54 pm
Posts: 1821
"When I first started browsing RYPN 17 years ago, you didn't post information unless you were willing to sign your real name on that. A voucher if you will. Now with internet privacy, identity theft, and other things, I understand the why's and how's of using a screen name. "

Well, it's been that way for a while, but I'm glad others are figuring out the problem of public disclosure.

Of course last night, I saw a politician on FB being besieged by people eager to give their opinion to said politician, and their "bona fides" to the entire world.


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:45 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:19 pm
Posts: 1745
Location: Pottstown,Pa.
As its been over a decade since the infamous "Rowland fiasco" went down I must admit that some of the small details have left my memory. What I do remember was that I felt strongly that " selective editing" was severely abusing my right to defend myself. In my view it had gotten so one sided that my only realistic recourse was to take the guilty parties to court and let a 3rd. party fact finder decide who was in the right.

Fortunately that proved to be unnecessary as the worst offenders dropped their weapons and disappeared into the night,..... never to be a bother again.

IMHO the forum remains a valuable asset and on balance is a good place to exchange info and stay current on doings in the industry, despite the posters who insist on hiding behind phony names and the abundance of personal "stuff".

While Trainorders has grown to where it gets nearly 10 times the viewership ( quite amazing when you consider that it's a paid site) that RyPN does I still think this forum is worth continuing, pimples and all.

Ross Rowland


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:22 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:28 am
Posts: 2528
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
co614 wrote:
What I do remember was that I felt strongly that " selective editing" was severely abusing my right to defend myself. In my view it had gotten so one sided that my only realistic recourse was to take the guilty parties to court and let a 3rd. party fact finder decide who was in the right.

Fortunately that proved to be unnecessary as the worst offenders dropped their weapons and disappeared into the night,..... never to be a bother again.


Yes, people typically no longer want to participate in online discussion when one party acts as a bully and threatens to sue, and take the personal assets of people who manage and moderate a railway preservation forum as a hobby. When you act like that, people are more likely to just get offline instead of putting up with your foolishness and general asshattery.

The bottom line is that you acted like a bully, you threatened to sue people over a railway preservation forum, and as a result, forum participation dropped significantly as a result. That is called a chilling effect. You got your way, and the new moderators caved and let you continue to participate. I imagine you, at the time, were pretty proud of yourself, and probably still are.

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--
David M. Wilkins
<Insert Impressive-Sounding Job Title Here>
<Insert Impressive-Sounding Organization Here>

"They Love Him for the Enemies He Has Made!"


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:24 am 

Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2010 11:08 am
Posts: 217
Location: Whitefield, ME
I'm going to keep this post short and concise. Be sure to read to it in its entirety before reaching any judgement.
RYPN is not dying as a useful forum. There are hundreds of people (perhaps more) who get exactly what they want when they come onto this forum, and are happy with what they find here. In this sense, rypn is flourishing.
The problem, I believe, lays in the fact that the forum's content has shifted away from what a certain group of members came to expect from the forum. Perhaps it is from a sense of pride, or a sense of ownership, many have been unwilling to accept this forums cultural change.
Personally, I have limited my posting here and avoid reading many of the posts, mostly due to uneccesary editorializing. I want a source that presents news on railway preservation in an objective, informative manner, perhaps even in a "scholarly" writing style. As others have pointed out, there is still lots of good information here, especially if you have good questions to ask. It is all about how willing one is to sort through to find the cream.
I have many more thoughts which I've yet to synthesize, but I'm excited to see how the revamped RYPN that Kelly mentioned.

Steve


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:46 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:54 pm
Posts: 1821
"Fortunately that proved to be unnecessary as the worst offenders dropped their weapons and disappeared into the night,..... never to be a bother again.

IMHO the forum remains a valuable asset and on balance is a good place to exchange info and stay current on doings in the industry, despite the posters who insist on hiding behind phony names and the abundance of personal "stuff"."

Two words: vexatious litigant.

As for me, I am a transanimist, I identify as a superheater, so there.


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:54 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 1491
Location: Strasburg, PA
wilkinsd wrote:
We have forgotten what RYPN is supposed to be about… It is not a forum to advertise your products/services, though such an approach often opens up useful discussion on best practices, sources, materials, etc.

I assume that line was aimed at my “Latest from the Strasburg Rail Road Shops” posts. Would you prefer that I cease and desist for the purity of the forum? Since we do work for other organizations, anything we do and anything I post could be construed as an advertisement, while most other organizations could post the same material and it would be applauded since without contract work, for them it wouldn’t be “advertising”.

I for one try to post information that is valuable in its own right and discontinuing it would be another nail in Rypn’s coffin.
wilkinsd wrote:
I want to say 2006 was the year that RYPN almost died, when the unnamed forum user threatened to personally sue Hume and the others. The site when down for a while, and then came back under the then-new leadership. That might have been the beginning of the end insofar as posting articles.

I agree. Threatening to sue someone who is performing a public service as a hobby is wrong in too many ways to count. Rypn hasn’t been the same since, I assume because the departure of those who were chased off were the driving force behind the “extras”.

Never the less, in my opinion, Rypn is nowhere near dying. While there are much fewer posts than other sites, the mean content is much more substantial. As far as I am concerned the biggest threat to its future at this time are these types of threads where everyone gets all worked up over examining our own belly button lint. All of the raised blood pressure reduces the chances of someone with something worthwhile to add on a preservation subject from posting because of his frustration due to this kind of thread.

_________________
"It was not easy to convince Allnutt. All his shop training had given him a profound prejudice against inexact work, experimental work, hit-or-miss work."
C. S. Forester

Strasburg Rail Road Mechanical Department


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 Post subject: Re: RYPN as a Useful Forum is Dying (A Rambling Rant)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:08 pm 

Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2005 4:03 pm
Posts: 776
Kelly,

One of the goals/hopes/aims of a redesign/strategy...

(sample here: http://savethetrains.com)

...was to help elevate the type of content you submit and turn them into articles that then automatically create their own threads.

And to do that with other people authoring and providing similar content.

Ideally that's something we can pursue if/how/when…

- The Other Kelly

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Kelly Lynch
Vice President
Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society, Inc
http://www.fwrhs.org


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