The chat room/forum problem (& an apology to @Technosailor)

I’ve been doing online communities for more than 20 years, starting in 1985 when a friend had a BBS. One thing I’ve noticed over and over again is that chat rooms and forums start out fun and then devolve over time for various reasons.

But in 2000 I discovered that blogs had the opposite effect. They got more interesting over time.

Why is that?

I call it the chat room/forum problem and I think I’ve discovered the cause.

See, in a chat room no one is in control. But usually some small group starts one. They are interesting at the start. I remember when a small group of us joined Microsoft’s NetMeeting forum back in 1996. Those were the days! They were fun. Extremely so. Some of us are even still friends today and we always love to talk about the early days of that group.

Why?

Because all of us had a common interest (a new product) and we were a small group and we were at the same level at the beginning (all of us were newbies).

But it devolved.

How?

First, wave after wave of newbies came in. They all wanted their attention and you couldn’t tell the experienced users (visually) from the new ones. At first the newbie waves were a lot of fun because we were able to teach new people the tricks we had spent months learning (like how to get a certain brand of video card to work, etc).

But after six or so waves the experienced users started getting tired of answering the same damn questions over and over. See the newbies weren’t willing to search for already-answered questions and, because it was a forum, no one was able to take control and segregate things.

Then it got worse. The bad actors arrived. IE, trolls and spammers. Trolls I can handle. After all, I troll once in a while too. Spammers? No way. They destroyed any last joy I had in participating in the group. Some of us left. Others of us hung on (I did) until Microsoft killed the product. But it wasn’t fun at the end.

Here’s something I’m noticing: my Facebook has the forum problem. It’s getting noisier and noisier. Facebook is trying to solve this problem with filtering and with a new feed, which only shows “popular” items. But it has the Forum/Chat Problem and no amount of lipstick will cure that problem.

As long as you only have your really close personal friends in Facebook, this is NOT a problem at all.

But Facebook’s leaders want to change to be more like Twitter. More open, so they can defend against an oncoming Google and Twitter and Microsoft onslaught of social networking technologies.

But the more public they make Facebook the more connections each user will have, and the more noise each of those connections will bring.

At first this looks like a positive thing, right? Over on FriendFeed people are telling me “we have more conversations.” That’s true, but the more conversations I got involved in the less I found I was learning.

This came full circle tonight when I checked in my “best of day” feed on FriendFeed, picture of that experience here.

I didn’t see any geeks. I didn’t see any tech. I didn’t see anything that was teaching me anything. I had stopped getting much value out of FriendFeed.

But over the past week I’ve found that Twitter is gaining in incoming value, the way blogs got more interesting over time (and if they didn’t, I just removed them from my reader).

Why do blogs bring more value over time?

Because bloggers get smarter over time and they have more experiences to pull on.

I noticed this in talk radio, too. Generally a talk radio host will get better over time. Why? As she or he gets more popular he/she will get better guests, be invited to better events, and become better studied on the topics they are talking about.

In other words, they become an expert.

I find I’m craving experts lately. People who build things. People who do things. People who make things happen. Tony Robbins, when he spoke at the Twitter Conference last month said that Twitter is his knowledge machine. He uses it to import great minds.

The thing is in the early days of a community having serendipity, which is what Facebook and FriendFeed’s forum features bring, make things a lot of fun. After all, it makes finding people who are like minded with you easier.

But eventually the experts (ie, people who are teaching you stuff) get drowned out and you are left with an experience that looks more like the magazine rack at a grocery store than a book shelf at Harvard.

So, what happened on Friday?

Twitter got lists.

This let us throw together a list of experts. For instance, I put together a list of people who have started companies. Compare that feed to your average Facebook feed and you’ll see it in stark black and white: your Facebook feed is “fun” but isn’t teaching you much.

It becomes even more stark when you do a list like my tech news brands list. See, this is NOT a forum! It is NOT a chat room!

No one can enter this community without being invited. Now compare to FriendFeed. We could have built a list like this over there, but it would have gotten noiser because of a feature called “Friend of a Friend.” That drags in people the list owner didn’t invite. Also, anyone can comment underneath any items on Facebook or FriendFeed. That brings people into YOUR life that YOU DID NOT INVITE!

Again, at first, this seems very democratic and very nice. After all, it’s great to throw a party for the whole world and let them drink your wine and have conversations with your kids. But, be honest here, would you rather have a private dinner with Steve Jobs, or would you rather have a dinner with Steve Jobs and 5,000 people who you don’t really know?

Which one would be a better place for you to learn something? Have an experience you can brag to your friends about?

See, tonight I had another experience on Twitter. One that ripped this whole thing wide open.

Mike Lee watched a friend die. Mike Lee is an engineer at Apple. His friend was Vinay Venkatesh, one of the top engineers at VMWare (he worked on the Fusion product). This afternoon Vinay had an accident on his motorcycle in the hills above Silicon Valley.

Listen into Mike’s Tweets:

Today
1

News

2

Update

3

No no god no

4

I regret to report

5

I held

6

Tragic, my heart is out to everyone involved.

What do you NOT see?

You don’t see any stupid YouTube-style commenters making light of the situation. You don’t see anyone posting pictures that would be inappropriate.

You don’t see anyone entering a conversation that should be viewed on its own in its own totality.

Twitter does NOT have the chat room/forum problem.

Let’s go back in history and discuss other forums/chat rooms.

I started out with BBSs. They had it. They started out interesting, but then as more and more people figured out how to do BBSs their value both devolved (more noise, and slower lines) and increased (more files to download — files for some reason don’t have the same problem that chat rooms do).

Prodigy? Yes. I was on that back in the 1980s. It started fun and then devolved. Now it’s gone.

CompuServe? Yes. Same thing.

AOL? Yes. In fact it was SO devolved that when AOL joined up with Usenet all the geeks on Usenet gave a collective “oh damn” when their own conversations saw an intrusion of newbies, bad actors, and spammers.

YouTube? Just go to the average video and you’ll see full scale devolution on going.

Digg? Absolutely. Devolved big time.

TechCrunch comments. Yes, but notice that they are now moderating their comments (some posts saw deletions of more than half of the comments), which dramatically improved them. As soon as the moderation stops on comments, they too will devolve and drive out anyone interesting.

My comments? I’m moderating them now too.

But notice that top-level blogs don’t have this problem.

Also notice that Twitter doesn’t have this problem.

If I only want to listen to, say, Louis Gray, there is NO WAY ANYONE ELSE CAN GET ONTO MY SCREEN (on Twitter)!

On FriendFeed? No. Louis Gray’s feed drags in tons of others.

On Facebook? No. Louis Gray’s feed drags in tons of others (even though you need to be “friended” by Louis to see his feed there).

But, Scoble, this makes you an elitist jerk!

Bing! Bing! Bing!

But at least I’m learning something and I’m not being dragged into cat photo land if I don’t want to go there. By the way, if all you care about is cat photos, a forum is a BAD place to be. Someone will post dog photos and ruin it all. Blogs even win here.

Which brings me to why I’m apologizing to Aaron Brazell and Mike Arrington. Earlier this year both of them deleted their FriendFeed accounts for various reasons.

I was bent because I saw the geeks leaving and the utility of the forum changing. At the time I didn’t want to internalize what I already knew, that the forum problem was rearing its head. Arrington left because he didn’t like the mob attitude that reared up over there. Brazell left because he didn’t see the utility in FriendFeed.

I fought with both of them, even blocking Brazell because I just didn’t want to taste the medicine they were dishing out. After all, I’ve posted 31,876 comments to my FriendFeed account. I’ve clicked on 21,981 things to “like” them. I’ve shown FriendFeed to dozens of audiences at conferences and consulting sessions. I’ve talked about it with the press. I’ve pushed it incessantly on Twitter (which, I figure, got me unfollowed there by at least 5,000 people).

In hindsight they were right. Why was I blindsided? Because FriendFeed had some features that made it different than other forums in the past. For one, it was decentralized conversation (in old-school forums the conversation was chosen for you. In FriendFeed you could start a new conversation with each item). For two, we had decentralized moderation (I can delete any comment underneath my items, and I can hide any items that come into my view).

But these newfangled features were not enough to keep the geeks after Facebook bought FriendFeed. After the geeks left (I was one, so this story is influenced by me in part) the tide was too much and now it just isn’t for me anymore.

I will still use it here and there and drop in on a conversation when I see something interesting, but that’s less and less.

Anyway, this is a pattern that I’ve seen. I don’t know if there’s anything you can do to counteract it, but this is a dangerous pattern for social software companies to ignore.

And don’t think that Twitter has learned this lesson, either. It is testing a new retweet feature (they used to call it “sharing” internally) that is very controversial.

Why is it controversial? Because it brings people into your view that you didn’t ask to see.

The chat room/forum problem should not be ignored. I’m sorry I ignored it and burned bridges with Aaron (I talked with Mike tonight and he barely even remembers our spat, so we’re cool).

I’ve unblocked Aaron and put him on my lists. Hopefully he’ll forgive me. But will Twitter and Facebook learn from this? Probably not.

About Robert Scoble

As Startup Liaison for Rackspace, the Open Cloud Computing Company, I travel the world with Rocky Barbanica looking for what's happening on the bleeding edge of technology and report that here.

149 thoughts on “The chat room/forum problem (& an apology to @Technosailor)

  1. It's tough. I had a system going that I called 'Zareste's Grid' and it had some popularity during its short run. It was a Flash program with a huge 2d board where anyone can post pictures, and they could group pictures by similarity. (as opposed to choosing categories) It worked very well, giving people a lot of freedom with very little corruption. And the 'comments' were merely a chat box in the corner that could be turned off

    I wonder if this 'sort by space' idea could apply to forums. My next project was going to be a 'message tower' in which people could place new messages near similar ones on a giant list of messages, so we could have all the messages in the world and still be able to find and create them spacially.

  2. Bravo! I sure hope Twitter doe'nt go down the “loss of control over my conversations” road. If I can't craft my experience without intrusion…for the almighty $$…then I'll be gone. GREAT POST! Thanks for sharing.

  3. It's tough. I had a system going that I called 'Zareste's Grid' and it had some popularity during its short run. It was a Flash program with a huge 2d board where anyone can post pictures, and they could group pictures by similarity. (as opposed to choosing categories) It worked very well, giving people a lot of freedom with very little corruption. And the 'comments' were merely a chat box in the corner that could be turned off

    I wonder if this 'sort by space' idea could apply to forums. My next project was going to be a 'message tower' in which people could place new messages near similar ones on a giant list of messages, so we could have all the messages in the world and still be able to find and create them spacially.

  4. Hey! Check out this cool photo tagging software called Fotobounce! It can help you sort your images using face recognition! It can also download & tag your photos from facebook & flickr! You can even use it from your cellphone, get it for free at: http://fotobounce.com/index.php?blog

  5. I agree that it matters what a person's intent is when choosing a system. Twitter is my favorite as well, but I think some people like FF for tracking their own personal learning. Facebook I find is more for close family and friends.

    The NY Times has an article today that is relevant to the conversation. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/09/business/09li… Geolocation is soon to be added to Twitter and may help filter some messages by context. The article also mentioned the open-source project Ushahidi. The software has text messages mapped by time and location.

  6. For me, Facebook is very much something that is almost entirely for fun. Twitter is where I learn things about technology, my field, helpful tools, some good news stories, new blogs etc. I don’t spend time on Facebook expecting to learn anything outside of what is going on in people’s personal lives.

    But that is also why my Twitter is almost entirely people I don’t know face to face, while on Facebook I pretty much consider everyone I have on my list to be a friend in the face to face.

  7. I wish that Twitter stole the “hide posts like this” feature from FF and Facebook and let me hide all the Fourquare/Mafia Wars or whatever tweets without blocking the person utterly.

    But for now, ruthlessly unfollowing people whose noise to signal ratio has climbed too high has helped me keep Twitter excellent.

  8. I think that “waiting until X isn't cool anymore” is a really valuable strategy. I'm barely logging into Facebook these days because it's so noisy, but my old LiveJournal (yes, yes, I know) has begun a resurgence of relevance for me – the only people left happen to be good friends and so it's calmed down to a gem of highly interesting (to me) content.

    I'm nervous about Twitter – at the moment it's a really great source of new ideas and great connections, but as more and more features get tacked on I wonder if what made it special will dilute it. I mean, they are one or two badly designed features away from accidentally turning Twitter into a forum and importing all of those problems that Robert lists. I mean, trending topics became a useless morass of noise months ago. The new re-tweet feature, if done badly, will be very, very bad.

    Meanwhile, IRC has become a forgotten near-dead communication tool, but those of us still using it, like it just fine.

  9. Thank you for encapsulating my experience so well. I remember all the services you mention…even tried my own forum…for high school kids..what was I thinking?

    I think you or spot on rergarding Twitter. Lists have turned my internet activities rightside up again.

  10. I brought this up while in wave a few weeks ago. How do we keep the good stuff and skip the not so good stuff?

    First off, any service that lets me choose is great. Let the social pipeline be the sum of all the noise and all the signal. Then let each user artistically craft their own input stream from the flood.

    User curated communities are pretty common now (HackerNews, reddit, friendfeed). Personalized views of a flood of data, not so much.

    I rarely see anything I don't want to on my super human filters list on friendfeed. It's a group with a dozen or so people and I'm always happy to check it out.

  11. I agree with Aaron, if when deleting an account, friendfeed deletes all the comments that are associated with it, your problem is with friendfeed.

    One could approach the argument differently to say that you should ask friendfeed to provide a second copy of all your comments somewhere so that they still 'exist' for you.


    Scoble, to the larger point you make in your article, it is well put on the noise factor, though I think the flaws/problems on other mediums definitely have an opportunity for smart people to improve the experience.

  12. Wow, you really blocked someone for choosing a different Web site? I’m surprised, you don’t come across as so hotheaded. Kudos for apologising at least.

    The only thing we all need to choose is the Web. If it doesn’t work well enough, we’ll have to improve it…

  13. @Scobleizer What do you think about bringing more and more conversation to the blog? Integrate your photos, videos, tweets, bookmarks etc., from other services in your blog and let your readers read and comment? Your blog becomes the hub of your digital activity. The community is that of your readers. You can moderate the comments. Its relatively noise free. If you could organize the external content flexibly in your blog you could do more with this..

    Would love to hear your thoughts.

  14. if i was having dinner with steve jobs and 5,000 of his friends, i would like to think that steve jobs has some very cool friends who are worth knowing, i suppose that is why facebook is so great for marketing and social proof but i do find it annoying when people upload a photo that has nothing to do with me and then tag me in it, they should really set it up so that the person being tagged approves before it is displayed publicly, i know that it's possible to remove a tag afterwards but really, it should be an opt-in not an opt-out

  15. I see what you are saying, I agree with what you are saying, but for the majority of the users that follow you, it explains your actions perfectly, but doesn't apply to the majority of US..

    You summed it up with

    “As long as you only have your really close personal friends in Facebook, this is NOT a problem at all.”

    Which for the mear mortal out there, is usually all we have!! even with my extended network from the tech startup scene, I do not create enough noise on any medium!

    This is a Blog entry for the special followers you have/ and information explaining what and why you do things for for the rest of us.!

    Don't get me wrong, keep it up. Its of interest, its informative, and it covers real issues in my scene of interest.

    on a side note! you mentioned the “list of people who have started companies” and still I havn't made it onto the list.. I know my pitch to you in cambridge was short, and while you were on the way to a pub!! but a founder I am!

  16. Really interesting read actually.

    You'll recall that Facebook already saw the “delete” scenario and attempted to prevent it before the backlash you outline (Feb 2009). Yeah. That went well.

    This highlights two things: 1) perception 2) prevention

    Perception of the meta, the commentary, the extras, the interaction, the flow, the dare I say…. wave. Who owns the flow? If you added a brick to the wall, does it become your wall? Pick any flawed analogy and start taking notes.

    Prevention of the orphaned meta commentary becoming orphaned or all derivatives or resultant items surrounding some corpus of unique content (assuming no edits) or the GUID that pins all things back together…. this is the folly of our software development decisions. Again, playback, and control of the everliving asset with full revision control might be the wave people want but don't know it yet… or might change their minds.

    I've been around on Slashdot and Livejournal enough to see this play out a few times. Here's the thing… you don't see Slashdot and Livejournal come up a lot these days? Why? They are the BBS of their times… there is always going to be another one.

    What we as users/members/etc of any such BBS must always endure? The learning curve of the software developers that are either just starting or have stolen all the best ideas or refined them.

    The nuclear option is to “delete” and it is as old as any angsty teen saying they won't go somewhere or leave their room to interact with others. Would you deny this option?

    The best elements of LiveJournal, Slashdot, Digg, DISQUS, and the publishing ease of FriendFeed and Twitter might collapse into something one day… and it seems that Facebook is about trying to get there. Maybe.

    This is what happens when you force kids to read The Fountainhead and “pick sides”.

  17. Very interesting notes, though as a “Normal” person, I often find it rather hard due to a limited social circle to get enough people I know well to fully make use of stuff like FriendFeed and Twitter. I worry that such a issue such as the Chatroom problem may swing too far in the other direction, creating near-impenetrable niches and circles that leave newcomers completely out to dry, and echo chambers increasing dramatically.

    I'm sure I am wrong, though, and that this won't happen. It is hard to see how the flow of communities will go in the future, there's a lot of ways it can go, I just hope that someone leaves the door open for well-meaning newcomers.

  18. I forgot to mention that the karma system and friend/foe system on Slashdot also help users choose which people they want to read comments by, call it “soft” following/blocking. If you like someone's comments consistently, you can set them as a friend and give them (in your eyes) automatic moderation up so you are more likely to see what they say. Likewise for someone you don't want to see, you can set their starting point lower. Karma does the same thing, but bases the starting point on moderation of past comments.

    Disqus brings some reputation to the system, and does let you follow people's comments, but it doesn't seem to have much impact on the visibility of comments at the source. (I haven't used Disqus as a publisher so I don't know all of its features.) Maybe Disqus, or something like it, is the place for a site-spanning slash moderation system that gives that power of crowds to sites that don't otherwise have the necessary traffic? Just a thought. Visibility could even be based on the average reputation, perhaps excluding outliers so “heavy hitters” don't completely overshadow others. And now I'm rambling…

  19. Well, as you wrote on the post if you watch things this way could be elitist, as someone pointed out below you don't have 100% of tweets granted with value. But as you teach me, the best part is in the art of the “Answer the correct Following” :-)

  20. Google Wave takes the Forum Problem and makes it 10x worse. For me Twitter is it, maybe with some RSS aggregator (but one stripped down so it loads fast, Google Reader can't deal with being a social network — my instance takes more than a minute to startup).

    1. Not yet :-)

      Let’s see in six months from now (but I’m betting the smart folks at Twitter will have found a better way to solve this problem).

  21. Twitter does NOT have ANY spam on my home feed. None. Nada. And it doesn't have a single person I DID NOT INVITE THERE. Not like other social networks.

  22. No, even if you filter to “just louis” you will get likes and comments made by other people. Unless you explicitly block everyone. Which is just too much damn work.

  23. YOU deleted your account, FriendFeed didn't. There was no reason you needed to delete it. But, whatever. I'm over it and I apologize for calling you names and blocking you over it.

  24. Your fight is with FriendFeed then. Not me. As you indicated, it is my account and my content. If FriendFeed is built flawed, then that is outside of my control.

  25. At least all I do is “TELL” my users what to do. You DELETED MY CONTENT AND YOURS OFF OF FRIENDFEED AND FORCED them to move to follow you. Which is worse?

  26. I think you tend to make enemies when you tell people what to do and use. It's not very community-like, when participating in other communities anyway, when thats the tone you take. I think you have enough capital to command respect for your opinions, but when that respect is not mutually lent, then you get into sticky situations where you piss people like me or Mike off.

    I left FriendFeed for very legitimate reasons and offered those very legitimate reasons. What happens after that is up to you and other people in the community. Agree or disagree but do so respectfully.

    Like you said, onward.

  27. Slashdot seems to have (largely) escaped the problem of the mob by leveraging the mob itself. All the crap gets hidden and the moderation system brings the best stuff to the top. With enough moderation and comments, an intelligent and informative conversation emerges. In fact, I rarely read the actual article posted since the comments are often much more informative and accurate.

    Digg attempts to do the same, by default showing comments with higher diggs or whatever, but in doing so completely destroys the threading. The default view now leaves all comments without context and instead of a logical discussion is just a bunch of noise.

    It's a shame that the Slashdot model isn't more common, but it really requires a critical mass of comments and moderators for its emergent properties to work.

  28. So what's next? Google Wave? or more Twitter?

    I think the Blogs are where it's at, and even while I continue to use some Twitter, Friendfeed and some Google Reader social features, the Blog is where quality conversation will remain!

    Now, lets figure out how to grow Blogs, Disqus is a step in the right direction, but not it. I think MovableType has something up their sleeve on real-time conversation around blog posts, and hopefully WordPress will have something also (since that's my platform of choice right now).

  29. So what's next? Google Wave? or more Twitter?

    I think the Blogs are where it's at, and even while I continue to use some Twitter, Friendfeed and some Google Reader social features, the Blog is where quality conversation will remain!

    Now, lets figure out how to grow Blogs, Disqus is a step in the right direction, but not it. I think MovableType has something up their sleeve on real-time conversation around blog posts, and hopefully WordPress will have something also (since that's my platform of choice right now).

  30. Robert, I think there is another aspect you are missing here, and maybe it will help clear up some of the language barrier you have with Aaron.

    The network you choose to share in at a particular time is a function of what role you play. Are you playing the Innovator? The Connector? The Collector? The Publisher? The Stress-tester?

    To what degree are you influenced by what others are doing?

    To what degree is your success in exploring a space dependent on being “first” to a concept?

    A couple of years ago, Old Robert would have said that he wanted as many inputs from smart people as possible, so he could find the new cool shinies and share them with a wide audience. Old Robert's utility for many was linked to our proximity. If Robert stands to be among the first to know, we stand to be tied for second.

    However, there is only so much Connecting a person can do. Granted, you did it for a VERY long time. But there is a need to create, and develop ideas in their own linear path without all the branching and kibitzing and commenting that goes along with being the Great Nexus.

    Besides… sitting in the middle of that maelstrom dulls the hearing, if not the thinking. I wonder how many decent ideas you had, how many epiphanies you stumbled through at the collision of comments left by others… ideas and epiphanies that left your mind before you could even record them.

    Frustrates the hell out of me when it happens in my head.

    Add in the fact that a lot of the people getting most active with you at FriendFeed were ALSO Connectors. Being a node among nodes is fun, as long as there is still juice flowing through the brain.

    All of that to say this? Why make a public issue out of “walking away?” Why not simply say that you are eager to find a different way to use FriendFeed, and integrate it with your other online presences and services in a manner that reflects a change in your priorities? “I need to be more focused and linear, and not as random and scattered.” A simple declaration.

    Steve Rubel did this without drama – but then I see his role as far different than yours. Steve spends a lot of time tinkering and toying with networks, to see what is possible from an individual's workload standpoint. You (traditionally) have been more of the Stress Test bellwether. So why not try something different?

    I can't tell you what that is… but I can guess that it will involve getting out of the center of the galaxy and out to the fringes of a spiral arm. I hear there is life out there…

  31. Incredible quantity Robert, but … that doesn't always translate into quality, does it? (You're also a particular type of edge case.)

    And will you really get value out of those additional people given the tools Twitter provides to translate the data into information?

    I simply don't think adding more and more people is an effective strategy to getting the right content. That's really where we agree to disagree. As an example, I'm very happy to be on one list in particular. Here's a snapshot of that list: http://ff.im/aQouI

    Without looking at my profile, what's the list about?

    Still a fan Robert. And I'll be interested to see your opinion of lists after the halo effect has worn off.

  32. Sorry, because of my building43 work I +am+ part of a community that is trying to learn how to help businesses deal with the new world of the 2010 web. One nice thing about Twitter is that you can't decide who is in your community and who isn't.

    FriendFeed used to be a good Twitter client for me. That's why I was pissed at you. You took away an opportunity to use the Twitter client I wanted to use.

    Now that is moot because I've seen that FriendFeed isn't the best Twitter client anymore. Anyway, onward.

  33. In the past week I've found 8,000 new people thanks to lists. Are you REALLY going to lecture me that lists bring social inbreeding? OK. But we'll disagree.

    See, Aaron, this is the new Scoble. Sigh.

  34. Robert- you're not part of that community. That's not an insult. It's real life. You shouldn't want or need to be a part of every community. You said that in your post. Do you want to be a part of the Midnight Golfers community, or whatever the hell you called it? Of course not…. My community is a very specific community – NOT a general one.

    I hope you get value out of stuff I do and write, but you're not the target nor should you be. You're in a different world than me and have a different set of people you cater to. Your community is very much a tech heavy community that is early adopter-ish. Mine is a very conservative (not-political) group that is trying to get up to speed with the lowest impact to their business. Simple. Not the same community. If you take that as offensive, then that's on you.

  35. Robert- you're not part of that community. That's not an insult. It's real life. You shouldn't want or need to be a part of every community. You said that in your post. Do you want to be a part of the Midnight Golfers community, or whatever the hell you called it? Of course not…. My community is a very specific community – NOT a general one.

    I hope you get value out of stuff I do and write, but you're not the target nor should you be. You're in a different world than me and have a different set of people you cater to. Your community is very much a tech heavy community that is early adopter-ish. Mine is a very conservative (not-political) group that is trying to get up to speed with the lowest impact to their business. Simple. Not the same community. If you take that as offensive, then that's on you.

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