No. of Recommendations: 117
As we march on towards 30K msgs and the 2 year birthday of this board, I am confronted by the following question. When did the REHP message board morph from an invaluable site of highly concentrated ER information to what is far closer to a cocktail party?

This is not intended as a rant, but I would like to offer some observations. I was turned on to this site over a year ago and have found information that is invaluable and priceless. I am grateful for those who have been so generous with their knowledge and time. For me, it is unfortunate that the pearls of wisdom are becoming harder to find. In part, that is due to my increased wisdom. Another component is the volume of messages that one has to sift through. One component of that is the increased popularity of the board which must be viewed as a good thing. The other seems to be a loss of discretion in postings.

My own experience with msg boards is probably not unlike most. They can be educational, offering a venue for teaching and learning. They can be social where people of common interests and varying degrees of free time [often quite alot] get together to chew the fat. My take is that we are encountering considerably more of the latter than the former. Mind you, I fully understand that I can come and go as I see fit and if the board doesn't suit my needs, I don't need to follow it. I have certainly learned from my experience here where I can find information that suits my purposes. I only offer some observations in the interest of maintaining the level of quality.

I am certainly guilty of having used msg boards on a social basis and have even been involved in a number of interchanges that were nothing more that long winded bickering over minutiae and differing points of view. While looking in the mirror one day and reminding myself to "Get a Life" as they say, I reacquainted myself with the notion that it is one thing to have and post an opinion. It is quite another to repeatedly and incessantly present it to people as a means of correcting them. To me, the latter is a sign of insecurity and weakness and I hope that I have done a good job of rehabbing myself in that regard.

I observe much of the same behavior here. It occurs to me that by whistling 1-2 posters off the ice and into the penalty box, I can reduce my messages by as much as 10%. By judiciously selecting a half dozen I can probably push 25-30%, although I realize that select group can vary with time. Truth is, I hate to do that because there is the chance that one of them may deviate from their norm and post a pearl.

I went back to msg #2 and read the original charter for this site and the intent of its moderator, the honorable intercst. When posting, we may want to ask ourselves if we are in harmony with the original intent. Another thing we may do is aspire to the likes of Hocus, by monitoring our recs. If we are posting many messages without many recs, perhaps we need to exercise more thought in our postings. The fact that Hocus' recs are about 6X his posts is a solid testimony to the value of his posts. In support of this, readers might be more diligent about assigning recs for messages they find valuable.

If you find yourself posting 10+ times a day on the board for any length of time, you may wish to apply for a Soapbox. If accepted, you now have a venue for advancing your agenda. If they don't accept you, it may be a reasonable indicator that what you are posting on this board isn't all that important.

One other important point is that rather than posting every response to the board, consider using the function where you e-mail your response to the poster only. If its one on one, there's no need to clutter the board.

No doubt there will be some or many who disagree with this issue as they see it as a more social gathering. In times past, I may have even agreed with you. Thats OK. I just wanted to make the observation that for me, the board's intended purpose was diminishing or no longer being met. It also occurs to me that in the past, I might have just gone after the individuals who differed in their approach to this board. That of course, would only exacerbate the problem that confronts us all. I also accept that it is difficult to establish guidelines for worthwhile posts as we each have differing opinions on what constitutes such. Instead, I simply offer the premise that those who are so adept at accepting personal responsibility for their financial well being may have the capability of being equally responsible about the value of their posts.

There is no need to make this a lengthy thread. If you agree, "rec" me. If not, thats OK too.

Seemingly sifting through a lot of fluff on the REHP msg board since what seems like 1902
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