Fishlore's history, context, general idea, etc.

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armadillo

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Ullooo

Here's another suggestion. I was wondering what got the forum started, what its history was, what the idea behind it was (for its founders), that sort of general info, and I couldn't find it in the home section. Perhaps it would be nice to have a little introduction to Fish Lore above all the strings on the home page? Or perhaps it's there and I've gone blind (again)!
 

COBettaCouple

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I think it was when Mike found a book at a yard sale called "online fish forums for silly fun" jk.. the current site is the result of a lot of work i can tell, but the origins are clouded in mystery (those lousy fish aliens again! >!).. or is it just me who's cloudy?
 
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armadillo

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he he he. Very mysterious indeed!
 

Tom

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I think it was when Mike found a book called How to Start Fish Forums for DummiesTM. lol
Tom
 

COBettaCouple

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Tom said:
I think it was when Mike found a book called How to Start Fish Forums for DummiesTM. lol
Tom
shhhh! you don't want to upset the fish aliens! :
 

Tom

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(Whispering)I don't think they heard me.(Insert erie music) lol
Tom
 
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Mike

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LOL! You're crackin me up.

As far as how the Fishlore forum got started - Cue the music and the flashback sequence please...

Several years back (pre 2004) I frequented many of the online fish forums and would often read rude or disparaging posts from more senior folks directed towards those new to the aquarium hobby and it always ticked me off when I came across those posts. It seemed like this behavior was starting to spread from place to place - prolly the same rude people, just with different user names on the various forums.

I wanted to create a place where those new to the hobby could come to ask questions and not feel stupid or get ridiculed for asking those questions. I also wanted a place where there was an underlying respect for ALL of the members, not just the senior members. On some of the other boards it seems like the senior members have forgotten that they too were new to this hobby at one point. Some of those senior folks really thought of themselves as experts, I mean really, how could anyone possibly be an expert in this hobby?

I also wanted to create an atmosphere that supports a free flow of information among hobbyists. Alot of the fish and aquarium books you read are written by ichthyologists or marine biologists and I think it's great that they are willing to share what they know, but I think that most of the future advancements, breakthroughs and innovations in this hobby are going to come from the hobbyists. For instance, reef tanks are really gaining in popularity, but there is so much that is NOT known about the exact care requirements of most of the inverts and corals that are being kept or going to be kept in the future.

Besides the flaming posts on some of the other boards, an even more disturbing trend is that most of the small fish stores are being taken over by the larger chain stores as they move into more and more areas. This is kind of sad, since the owners of the smaller stores were (often) extremely knowlegable and wanted you to be successful. If you were successful that meant more future sales for their store. This doesn't seem to be the case with the larger chain stores. These chain stores compete by hiring minimum wage workers with no formal training in the animals they are selling. I guess I have mixed feelings about these stores... You are able to get equipment cheaper since they can buy in bulk and pass the savings on to you, but you don't get the opportunity to ask the really important questions before you buy the animal. That's were sites like Fishlore can help. We can help each other by sharing what we know about the various species and topics related to fishkeeping.

The FishLore forum is growing all the time and the moderators and members here deserve all the credit. I just try to keep it running by writing articles for the html side of the website, implementing suggestions from the mods and members and keeping the riff-raff to a minimum.

Hope that answered your inquiry.

Mike
 

COBettaCouple

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That's what sets fishlore apart from the others and why we joined here, but nowhere else. everyone's equal and we can disagree and still treat each other decently.
 
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armadillo

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Mike said:
LOL! You're crackin me up.

As far as how the Fishlore forum got started - Cue the music and the flashback sequence please...

Several years back (pre 2004) I frequented many of the online fish forums and would often read rude or disparaging posts from more senior folks directed towards those new to the aquarium hobby and it always ticked me off when I came across those posts. It seemed like this behavior was starting to spread from place to place - prolly the same rude people, just with different user names on the various forums.

I wanted to create a place where those new to the hobby could come to ask questions and not feel stupid or get ridiculed for asking those questions. I also wanted a place where there was an underlying respect for ALL of the members, not just the senior members. On some of the other boards it seems like the senior members have forgotten that they too were new to this hobby at one point. Some of those senior folks really thought of themselves as experts, I mean really, how could anyone possibly be an expert in this hobby???

I also wanted to create an atmosphere that supports a free flow of information among hobbyists. Alot of the fish and aquarium books you read are written by ichthyologists or marine biologists and I think it's great that they are willing to share what they know, but I think that most of the future advancements, breakthroughs and innovations in this hobby are going to come from the hobbyists. For instance, reef tanks are really gaining in popularity, but there is so much that is NOT known about the exact care requirements of most of the inverts and corals that are being kept or going to be kept in the future.

Besides the flaming posts on some of the other boards, an even more disturbing trend is that most of the small fish stores are being taken over by the larger chain stores as they move into more and more areas. This is kind of sad, since the owners of the smaller stores were (often) extremely knowlegable and wanted you to be successful. If you were successful that meant more future sales for their store. This doesn't seem to be the case with the larger chain stores. These chain stores compete by hiring minimum wage workers with no formal training in the animals they are selling. I guess I have mixed feelings about these stores... You are able to get equipment cheaper since they can buy in bulk and pass the savings on to you, but you don't get the opportunity to ask the really important questions before you buy the animal. That's were sites like Fishlore can help. We can help each other by sharing what we know about the various species and topics related to fishkeeping.

The FishLore forum is growing all the time and the moderators and members here deserve all the credit. I just try to keep it running by writing articles for the html side of the website, implementing suggestions from the mods and members and keeping the riff-raff to a minimum.

Hope that answered your inquiry.

Mike
That's really interesting. Indeed, I feel free to ask silly questions (being careful to try to place them in the right section of course!) and I won't be shot down in flames. I haven't found another forum like this. You've definitely succeeded in your non-bullying mission. Really big thumbs up, really. Strings like the 'are you a boy or a girl' would have soon degenerated in most other forums, so again, congrats on keeping it all well organised, easy to find and mostly respectful to all!

Your history/philosophy of the site explanation could really be placed on the home page (in my humble opinion) because it's your baby, and it's really nice to know what got it all started.
 

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Thanks for the history Mike. I do spend time in other forums - mostly Reef Central learming as much as I can about marine tanks, but I always come back in here, and when I do I realize that this forum makes you feel like part of a family more than any other one. It's kinda like coming back home. And I totally agree that there are no "experts" in this hobby, except in certain peoples' own minds. There are a lot of ways to successfully do things, and one way doesn't suit everybody. And the hobby, knowledge ane even equipment are always changing. Keeping an open mind about what works best in fishkeeping is to me the best policy to follow.
 

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This is such a great thread!! As the saying goes "It takes a village to raise a child" the same goes for our site "It takes all the members to make it great". You guys/gals are so smart- just think of how much we know when we put all our minds together. keep up the good work and Mike thanks for the history.
Carol
 

capekate

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Thanks Mike,
For creating such a wonderful site. Easy to maneuver with knowledgable information here. I have not been a part of other fish forums, but have been part of a few other of a different topic. I agree that the bashing etc can be horrible and the rudeness unacceptable IMO. I love this site, the folks here are fantastic.. wonderful, sharing and caring people. ;D
 

Tom

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And I am quoting the AKA(American Killifish Associasion) that said, 'We weere all beginners once; we're all beginners still'. It is so true. It is also like the saying, 'You learn something new everyday'.
Tom
 
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Mike

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Everyone's equal and we can disagree and still treat each other decently.
And that's what leads to productive conversations.

And I totally agree that there are no "experts" in this hobby, except in certain peoples' own minds.
Yep and they're only fooling themselves.
 

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i find this forum the most friendly and not just serious stuff either which is obviously crucial, but also the friendly non fish banter too. always nice to come online after a hard days work for a little chuckle and help those in need too! i have only joined one other forum (celestial pearl danio site) but there;s very few members and hardly any posts, so only go on once every few weeks to read the one and only new post!! there's always something to read on here!! always welcoming and can ask any question no matter how daft it seems! if you dont ask you wil never know! as i read somewhere somethingn along the lines of "being stuck isn't a bad thing, staying stuck is". and that people respect each other regardless of age/experience and no bullying/intimidation. we can can agree to disagree on things without it being an issue. no-one is rude, vulgar or offensive - perfect for a welcoming place - especially since kids use it.
keep up the good work!
tan
 

atmmachine816

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tan.b said:
i find this forum the most friendly and not just serious stuff either which is obviously crucial, but also the friendly non fish banter too. always nice to come online after a hard days work for a little chuckle and help those in need too! i have only joined one other forum (celestial pearl danio site) but there;s very few members and hardly any posts, so only go on once every few weeks to read the one and only new post!! there's always something to read on here!! always welcoming and can ask any question no matter how daft it seems! if you dont ask you wil never know! as i read somewhere somethingn along the lines of "being stuck isn't a bad thing, staying stuck is". and that people respect each other regardless of age/experience and no bullying/intimidation. we can can agree to disagree on things without it being an issue. no-one is rude, vulgar or offensive - perfect for a welcoming place - especially since kids use it.
keep up the good work!
tan
I agree, i think MIke has accomplished what he set out too. People can post anything they want here and people are good enough to not go crazy about it and everybody helps other people from being "stuck"
 
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armadillo

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And some great debates on sensitive issues wihtout people getting hysterical, fanatical and abusive. Huge thumbs up for that thread on single sex marriage.
 

Tazmiche

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Thanks Mike, you are fab!!
Leaving boring details out I was at a real low in my life when i decided to start fishkeeping and found this site whilst researching how to start. I too searched other sites but this one had me hooked from day one. I needed something positive to focus on and i found it here.

Not only did i gain all the knowledge i needed to buy my first tank etc but i found an escape from my life reading the nutty threads that were not fish related. Without sounding like a drama queen this forum has done me the world of good ( oh, apart from the chronic MTS of course!!)

I log in at least 5 times a week and it gives me a buzz. Nice to talk with an online community, all as unhinged as me that are genuine.

Good work mate, you're a star!! ;D
 
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