The Dissent Thread

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Conky
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The Dissent Thread

Post by Conky » 07:54 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Split from this announcement as it was getting astonishingly off-topic. Feel free to comment. Admin 1st May 2008


As a dissenting voice, and I'm happy to be in a minority of one. I personally dont think we need this concession. Roy has a great site, and good luck to him. I look forward to meeting him, and he is clearly a great Port expert, and friends tell me, a good man.

But we set up this site because of issues surrounding freedom of speech. We freely offer links to his site, and until that is reciprocated, dont agree to piecemeal deals. Just get on with life and wish FTLOP well, but deal with them from a position of strength, and not as somehow subservient.

Alan
Last edited by Conky on 10:02 Wed 30 Apr 2008, edited 1 time in total.

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KillerB
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Post by KillerB » 08:33 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Conky,

I understand your point here but I see this as a good thing. FTLOP has its rules and we have our rules: ours are better, obviously :twisted: Roy has changed his rules so that people on his site can get involved in our off-lines meaning potentially more people turning up. The full reciprocation thing would be nice but the most important part has always been the off-lines and now we can have open links, on this subject, between the two busiest Port fora on the web - surely a good thing.

We are not the weak partner in this as our forum is currently the more active but FTLOP has more members. I'd say evens. It is not subservience, it is not even a partnership, it's just links.

I hear your dissent and accept it as a valid point but I believe that this is an improvement and I'm fully in favour of it.

Cheers,

Alex
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Post by AHB » 08:59 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Conky

I have no problem with you being a dissenting voice or even the only voice with a dissenting view. Keep it up. There are things which you have said to me in the past which have directly affected the way in which I approach situations.

For example, I know you have worries that we are becoming too geeky on the forum. I would love for you to start a thread on this because the last thing that I would want is for the tone of this forum to put off potential new members or new recruits to the world of the Purple Sunshine (sorry, closest colour I could find).

Alex
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Post by Conky » 09:34 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Al-K & Al-B,

Fair points, and thats the way it should be done. Listen to all points of view and then go with the majority.
Having aired my concerns, I will now wish this development well, and hope it is as you suggest.

Alan.

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Now we are being invited to be Roy’s enforcer of Roy’s rules

Post by jdaw1 » 14:36 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Conky wrote:But we set up this site because of issues surrounding freedom of speech. We freely offer links to his site, and until that is reciprocated, dont agree to piecemeal deals. Just get on with life and wish FTLOP well, but deal with them from a position of strength, and not as somehow subservient.
Broadly, I agree with Conky. Last June I asked a portophile what to do about yet-another-editing of one of my posts (which—horror!—changed not just the words, but also the punctuation!). The portophile checked and expressed surprise that I hadn’t been cc’d about :tpf:, which I why I joined a day ‘late’.

Now we are being invited to be Roy’s enforcer of Roy’s rules. I decline. In fact, the :ftlop: rules on linking have helped keep me off that forum.

Edit: though I disagree with Conky’s dislike of geekiness. I sometimes post on a forum seeking help (e.g.), exactly because the geekiness reassures me about the frequent posters’ competence.

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Post by Rubby » 19:16 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Conky wrote:But we set up this site because of issues surrounding freedom of speech.
As a newbie (I still see myself as one), I was wondering about this for some time.
I found this forum by Googling for Port related websites. It was also on this forum where I first heard of the FTLOP website, on which I am a lurker for quite some time now.
What is the historical relation between this forum and FTLOP?

If you don't mind me asking...
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KillerB
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Post by KillerB » 21:18 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Rubby wrote:
Conky wrote:But we set up this site because of issues surrounding freedom of speech.
As a newbie (I still see myself as one), I was wondering about this for some time.
I found this forum by Googling for Port related websites. It was also on this forum where I first heard of the FTLOP website, on which I am a lurker for quite some time now.
What is the historical relation between this forum and FTLOP?

If you don't mind me asking...
Now, if you'd met me for that beer I could have told you to your face.

It was set up by a few of us that were on FTLOP. We just wanted a more relaxed place to discuss our passion for Port. Roy has a good site but it can be a little too formal for some of us on the forums. One night we just set this place up with immense help from my wife (Treacle/Tracie) and started posting.

We're still going :tpf:
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Post by Conky » 21:23 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Rubby wrote:
Conky wrote:But we set up this site because of issues surrounding freedom of speech.
As a newbie (I still see myself as one), I was wondering about this for some time.
I found this forum by Googling for Port related websites. It was also on this forum where I first heard of the FTLOP website, on which I am a lurker for quite some time now.
What is the historical relation between this forum and FTLOP?

If you don't mind me asking...
Rubby

I'll try and explain this one without hopefully re-opening old issues to much, or being judgemental (Which I was at the time)
There were a handful of Posters on FTLOP who watched a situation develop. One particular Poster, was making some rather strong points that the organiser didn't appreciate. There were a few barbed comments and warnings. Then there started to be a few Post deletions, and eventually a Poster was suspended.
This handful of Posters I mentioned thought this suspension a tad severe, but expected the situation to resolve itself. It didn't.
So the idea of another Forum was kicked around, and with the technical ability of KillerBee's better half, Tracey, the idea became reality.
It was founded on the ethics of democracy, with the aims of enjoying and learning about Port. It was also decided to be a little irreverent and humorous.
That also gave us the thought that both this site and FTLOP serve slightly different purposes. I haven't got the right to speak for FTLOP, but it is a little more highbrow and serious. It also has a commercial side, with a holiday/tourism angle.

Anyway, thats the diplomatic and polite version of how it all came to be (I hope!). If you want the juicier, full-blooded version, you'll have to come to a Tasting, and share a few bottles of Purple Sunshine. Mind you, there will be many such tales, and you wont remember half of them the following morning! :D :wink:

Alan

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Post by Rubby » 22:39 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Thanks for sharing.
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Post by Rubby » 22:56 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Oh, and I also like to grab this occasion to thank everyone on this forum for their kind help and patience in answering the questions of this newbie.
I've already picked up so much important knowledge in my short stay here.

Tonight I am enjoying my second VP ever (Bomfim 1996, indeed maybe too young, but what a revelation after my first, the Kopke 1980!).
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Post by Simon Lisle » 22:57 Wed 30 Apr 2008

I broadly agree with Alan as long as it's a two way thing I think there will be no problem.I thought the posting of the harvest tour was a bit of an advert which would cause eruptions if done vice versa.For example if we all organised a trip to the Douro would the ftlop let us post our trip to anyone wanting to join in I think not.But all in all this is a site which takes things in it's stride and we can criticise the port shippers as much as we want without any polite but sometimes terse reply.

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SushiNorth
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Dissention

Post by SushiNorth » 23:07 Wed 30 Apr 2008

Conky won't be the only one with a dissenting opinion on this.

Commercialization of content, particularly content generated by other paying members, always smacks me as an abuse of the open potential of the Web. When I'm not drinking port (or sake), I work with megacorps to explain why -- in web communities -- open is better than closed, and why restrictive forum rules lose out to more permissive systems. I do not think we can prevent our Offlines from being discussed (or linked to, or whatever) elsewhere, but I dislike the idea that they might:
A) Be used as a marketing bullet or be used to profit from the contributions of members here on TPF
B) Become swamped by folks with lots of $$s just looking for the next open port bottle.

Specifically for point B, as members of this community, good behavior and etiquette are demanded at Offlines or we risk being ostracized from the community on the website. Outside joiners are not invested in this community and therefore are not under the same obligation.
Furthermore, only users who are familiar with this community by registering and watching the Offlines list are regularly aware of our events. This makes them knowledgable of who's who, personalities, and the discussions. It provides a common thread at the offlines which non-members won't have. Thus, the price of knowing about offlines is to know about the online activity in the community.

As a compromise, I would propose that people who come to our offlines be members here who have introduced themselves on the introduction forum. I don't think it will happen, but I'd also ask Roy to list this forum as a link in a public (non-member) part of his site if his site will be benefiting from our content.

On a related note, it may be time for a statement about re-use of content from this site (I generally recommend Creative Commons Share-Alike w/ Attribution)

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KillerB
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Post by KillerB » 23:45 Wed 30 Apr 2008

SushiNorth wrote:I would propose that people who come to our offlines be members here who have introduced themselves on the introduction forum.
Good God no. Many of our off-line attendees are friends of site members. The nature of this site is very open and this puts an enormous restriction on the thing that we do best. We will have to see how it progresses before doing anything as drastic as that. Members and invitations only maybe.

May have to look at the content issue though, especially as we now have many members who have joined via Google and Wiki - I don't give a stuff if somebody pinches my {cough} work but others may object. Thanks for the tip.
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Post by DRT » 00:03 Thu 01 May 2008

Jdaw,

Can you create an "I've-opened-a-can-of-worms" emoticon, please?

:roll: :lol:

Derek
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Post by KillerB » 00:10 Thu 01 May 2008

Does anybody object to this thread being split? I will put it in Site Stuff but the discussion is slightly distracting from the point. I don't want to hack it off without getting views, just that most of it is Site Stuff and nothing to do with Tastings.

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Post by DRT » 00:18 Thu 01 May 2008

Please do.
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Post by AHB » 09:03 Thu 01 May 2008

admin wrote:Does anybody object to this thread being split? I will put it in Site Stuff but the discussion is slightly distracting from the point. I don't want to hack it off without getting views, just that most of it is Site Stuff and nothing to do with Tastings.
Yes please.
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Post by AHB » 09:07 Thu 01 May 2008

Simon Lisle wrote:I broadly agree with Alan as long as it's a two way thing I think there will be no problem.I thought the posting of the harvest tour was a bit of an advert which would cause eruptions if done vice versa.For example if we all organised a trip to the Douro would the ftlop let us post our trip to anyone wanting to join in I think not.But all in all this is a site which takes things in it's stride and we can criticise the port shippers as much as we want without any polite but sometimes terse reply.
Simon,

I want to emphasise that Roy only posted his message about the short duration harvest tour in response to my suggesting that he did so. I have the distinct impression that he would not have done so if
(a) I had not suggested it; or
(b) he had anticipated how much reaction it would have created

However, he did it as a favour for me (believe it or not!) to save me some effort as I was rushed off my feet at the time and did not have decent access to TPF. If Roy hadn't have posted his message, I would have posted a link to it (as I did anyway) and we probably would not have had anything like the same flurry of discussion and messages that followed.

However, this all moves us closer to our next goal of 15,000 messages!

Alex
Top Ports in 2018 (so far): Niepoort VV (1960's Bottling), Quinta do Noval Nacional 1994 and San Leonardo Very Old White (Bottled 2018)
2017 Ports of the year: Fonseca 1927 and Quinta do Noval 1927

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Post by Simon Lisle » 17:31 Thu 01 May 2008

I did not know that there was an invitation to post the message however I think it would be a good idea if we had a permanent link for the FTLOP and they had one for the port Forum this would solve quite a few issues arising in the future so people who just happened across either site would be aware of the other.

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Websites with an official dogma claiming …

Post by jdaw1 » 18:05 Thu 01 May 2008

Simon Lisle wrote:good idea
Websites with an official dogma stating that they are the only website on a topic do not allow outgoing links. Websites intended to help users do encourage relevant outgoing links. :ftlop: is in transition: it might happen, but won’t yet be seen as a “good idea†. Wait a year.

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Post by SushiNorth » 05:42 Fri 02 May 2008

KillerB wrote:
SushiNorth wrote:I would propose that people who come to our offlines be members here who have introduced themselves on the introduction forum.
Good God no. Many of our off-line attendees are friends of site members. The nature of this site is very open and this puts an enormous restriction on the thing that we do best. We will have to see how it progresses before doing anything as drastic as that. Members and invitations only maybe.
(Waited for the split)

Members and invitations seems fair, I just want to avoid having our offlines taken advantage of by an uninvested parallel community. I've been to lots of profit-focused tastings, and they tend to involve the tasters "getting the most for their money." I just think members of this community (and their guests) will stay on better behavior.

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Post by Conky » 11:42 Fri 02 May 2008

Sushi,

If it was a very important Tasting, with strictly limited numbers, I agree with you. Members get priority.

But...

Most of our tastings are generally informal, where someones gives up their home and invites a mate to make up numbers. Or they choose London as the venue, and then generally struggle to fill the numbers because of cost for those that cant do a Day-Trip.

So I feel that although you are right theoretically, it would actually be in practice, an unnecessary issue. I'll look forward to when it is a genuine problem though. For example, if you were to make the extra-ordinary effort to cross the pond to attend the Cockburn Tasting in October, I personally would say you would simply have to have a seat at the table, and if thats a problem, we need a bigger table. It's all relative :)

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Post by RonnieRoots » 20:32 Fri 02 May 2008

First of all, I think it is good that we are now allowed to post links to offlines from ftlop. A number of us post there and it is silly to have to pretend on ftlop that this site doesn't exist. It is always good to meet portlovers from around the world and it's a fact that ftlop has more members than us, just as it's a fact that the majority of worthwhile offlines is organised through this forum.

I always felt Roy was being slightly paranoid by laying out such strict rules. I guess his motivation was mainly protecting the commercial side of the website (his harvest tour and the members area of ftlop). Therein lays also my main objection to his site and the forum. Because there is no clear boundary between the commercial area and the forum (the forum is an open space to chat about port, but it's also used as advertisement space) I become quite hestitant to post on certain topics. Furthermore, I also get suspicious when I see a post from Roy on another forum. E.g. when he posts a tasting note here, I can't help but thinking that he wants to draw attention to his tasting notes database, which is 'subscribers-only'.

What I love about this site is that we are all just a bunch of portloving people, sharing our passion and knowledge. By doing that, we have created an invaluable database of information on ports, producers and tasting notes. And we also get to know new people, who share the same passion.

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Post by 10Anos » 08:21 Sat 03 May 2008

Question to those who regularly post on :ftlop:: is it really noticeable that this is a commercial site? In other words: do certain products seem to attract above average attention which can be attributed to e.g. being mentioned more often than other products (read: sponsor vs. non-sponsor-products)?
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Post by DRT » 10:15 Sat 03 May 2008

10Anos wrote:Question to those who regularly post on :ftlop:: is it really noticeable that this is a commercial site? In other words: do certain products seem to attract above average attention which can be attributed to e.g. being mentioned more often than other products (read: sponsor vs. non-sponsor-products)?
It is noticeable that it is a commercial site, especially from the home page as that's were you will find links to "partner" sites and access to the subscriber only features of the site such as Roy's Tasting Notes, the Newsletter, the Subscription page and info about the travel business side of the site. There is one area on the Forum that is dedicated to Travel (but has morphed into a place to discuss food and Off-lines too) which is where you find the threads promoting specific tours to the Douro and Madeira.

Roy doesn't miss an opportunity to drop a reference to these "products" into some of his posts but, given that this is how he makes a living, I don't consider that to be a problem.

Derek
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