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Offline JohnN

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The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« on: November 23, 2009, 02:04:08 PM »
You may or may not know this, but initially I was against adding a message board to Two Stroke Motocross.

Just like every other human on the planet I have my opinions about message boards, based on experiences that were not so good. In so many cases I've read stuff that was just terrible on so many levels. Some complete slander, some lies, and much of it extremely disrespectful.

I wondered why this situation could be so bad, until this morning.

Usually I follow the back-links on my site, just to see what folks are saying about two strokes. This morning I followed a link back to a site that shall remain nameless, and found a post in where the author insinuated  an article on my site might not be true. He didn't come out and say it but he certainly implied that it was not true.

So after being a lurker (a reader that does not contribute to the conversation) for almost a year, I felt inspired (pissed off actually) and wrote a post to defend the article. At least in my mind I hoped that is what it would do! LOL

Well the guy writes back, not only does he ignore the question I asked, but sidesteps it. In effect asking me to prove myself by answering a couple of his questions.

Honestly I saw red!  >:( I was so mad, that I wanted to rip him a new..... well ... um.... well I was really upset. Lucky for me I needed to drive to the city just when I would have been typing some idiotic comeback, to show this guy I was right. While driving in the car I had a coupe of interesting thoughts.

First one was, no matter what I wrote, this guy will either side step it or turn it around and make another snide remark. That would probably get me even more upset. Even after coming up with a dozen come-back ideas to write in my defense, I felt that not one of them would "convince" this guy of anything different. His mind was made up and closed a long time ago.

Which made me think, I didn't have to defend myself at all. Which made me feel much better.  ;D

Then came the doozy... this guy was baiting me so that I would fight with him on the forum.

Why would someone want to do that? Then I looked around and saw all the ads on the message board. Did you know that, that when you own a web site, you can charge for advertising based on the number of impressions that your site gets? The more "hits" on the site the more money you can make.

Once I thought that, I realized something very interesting. Could it be that these forums purposely hire, set up or ask friends to post things that gets people's emotions boiling, just so they can get more traffic to their site?

It's possible that they don't give a hoot one way or the other about what is written on their board! As long as lots of people visit their site and they are able to charge as much as possible for advertising.

Of course this is only my opinion and it could be crap. But what if I'm correct?

Well whichever is true, I thought of a few tips for when you are cruising the internet message boards. Feel free to use these or ignore then, it's up to you, but they may just keep your blood pressure in check!!

1. Always be respectful... every single time you post. This one tip will probably be more than enough to make your message board experience a wonderful one.

2. If someone accuses you of something, calls you a liar or blasts your opinion, ask yourself is this guy serious or just trying to bait me and drag me into a forum fight?

3. If they're serious, I'd feel bad for the guy, he probably has low self-esteem and he's trying to make himself feel better by putting you down.

4. If they're attempting to bait you, ignore them. No..... I mean not just ignore them, never answer them when they write anything, directly to you or not.

For the most part these guys are bullies. They goad you into a fight in order to show you (and everyone else) how superior they are. Or they purposely mis-understand your meaning and turn it around on you. Usually while dripping with sarcasm and self righteousness.

Now some people just do this because they are emotional, having a bad day or something is not going very well in their life. Give normal people (like me and you?)  :-[ a chance to apologize. Ask them what they meant by what they wrote. If it was an honest mistake, let it go!

It's so easy to misunderstand the written word. Unless you are a writer by trade or have a knack for writing, it can be difficult or impossible to express some emotions via the written word. Give folks a break.

On the other hand you have the guys that live for this stuff. If they disagree with something, they are right and everything you write is wrong. Not only that but they speak down to you, like they are better than you. At least in their minds they think they are better.

These are the guys to ignore.

Why do I say to ignore these folks? Because when they can't engage you in the sport of one-ups-man-ship,  a game in which you will never win, one of two things can happen. They will get bored with you and leave you alone. Or they will continue to write crap on the board, "yelling" because you don't answer them. At that point, it's time to feel sorry for them.

My feeling is that these message board bullies chase away the interesting folks that could offer some excellent insight. I've seen them do this to folks in the industry. Folks that took time out of their busy lives to add something to a board, but they get attacked by those who need to feel superior and the Industry folks just leave.

That's why I resisted diving into starting a forum. I won't allow that to happen here.

Hence the rules on this board are very short and to the point. Be respectful. Disagree or hold different opinions in an adult manner without attacking others. Otherwise your post will disappear. Do it often enough and you will be banned.

What do you guys think?
« Last Edit: November 23, 2009, 02:20:47 PM by John Nicholas »
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Offline eprovenzano

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2009, 05:02:15 PM »
John this is your board, and as such you have the right to run it as you see fit. 

I for one am happy that you opened it up.  It's a pleasure to discuss the merits of the two smoker with fellow smoker enthusiast.  I have no problem debating in an adult manner the age old smoker vs. thumper topic.  Many times we may just agree to disagree.  They have their opinion, I have mine (most likely we are both wrong) and that's OK.  As long as its not personal attacks, they are free to express their opinion, as I too have the same right.

Again I'm just happy to be here, and as I'm sure many others would agree, what ever we can do to make this forum better, please let us know.
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Offline JohnN

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2009, 05:24:02 PM »
eprovenzano,

Thanks for the comments.

Although I had a thought while reading your post. I think the whole 2 vs 4 debate thing has gotten way out of hand (on both sides!) and we should just concentrate on providing a place for guys (and gals... of course) to read about, share stories, ask questions and talk about two strokes.

They are light, fun to ride and bring a smile to your face. What could be any better?

As for who is right or wrong, if changes are not made in the near future (with sound, etc), we will all be talking about the good old days when you could ride motocross, using an internal combustion engine. At some point we may be on electric bikes or bikes powered by a source that hasn't yet been invented.

Let's enjoy what we have, while we can. :D

As for making the forum better, we'll just have to figure that out as we go along! We're in it together.
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Offline Hondacrrider

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2009, 05:40:06 PM »
well, electric bikes, are already here, but not very competitive, the zero mx wouldn't really have a chance against even a 125, and the company designed the bike to compete with 250f's
I'd rather be riding...

Offline JohnN

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2009, 05:42:43 PM »
The electric bikes of today are nothing like they will be in five or ten years.

Besides, what I mean is that we will all be riding them, because the internal combustion ones will have been legislated out of existence.

My hope is that is a very long way off!
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Offline Alec S

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2009, 07:06:42 PM »
A lot of 4T riders are pretty defensive these days.

Imagine you've just spent 6-7K on what you think is your dream bike and now you find people from Jody W down to Joe from Asshatville telling you it's the "wrong choice".  Most people react emotionally and defensively when facing criticism. Expect it.

Testosterone is another common problem of forums.

As for dealing with  "issues" on a forum......Don't give an inch or they'll expect a mile atmo.

Focus on issues and not individuals. There are plenty of places to act like a spoiled child on the web. This isn't one of them.


Offline compmoto

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2009, 11:17:47 AM »
+1 , here!  I too, am glad u started this. I have been toying with the idea of starting one myself, for some vintage roadracer guys I race with ...2 strokes, again! old Yamaha RD 350/400s ...and some others, can't seem to remember what kind they were... ;), Kaw pies, somethin'or other... Maybe these forums are a good place for the "old guys"... I'm definately not as young as I used to be...that how it feels, anyhow...Keep up the good work!
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Offline westyzkx

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #7 on: November 25, 2009, 07:50:41 AM »
Ok well this was a good idea John, you can be sure of that.

My 2 cents is I don't think there is any danger so long as you keep in mind what this site and forum is for and don't let it get watered down. Let me make it clear - if someone comes on and starts banging on about how great 4 strokes are then they should be politely told to leave and / or be blocked - this is a 2 stroke site. If we wanted a place for both 2 strokes and 4 strokes then they should start a new site called 2 AND 4 stroke motocross - but I wouldn't join..

We needed a place / forum that allows people who beleive in 2 strokes to be able to chat / laugh / discuss and have common ground with other people who enjoy the 2 strokes.

Their seems to be 2 schools of thought when it comes to 2 strokes and 4 strokes - there are those who say 'live and let live' and are happy to accomodate both - and perhaps I would have been one of those if the 4 strokes hadn't almost killed off the 2 stroke bikes I love.

Im one of those who has had enough of 4 strokes and don't want anything to do with the things, I believe having that attitude can help bring back the 2 strokes, just like they have done in the UK where they realised they were an endangered species and action had to be taken to protect them. The solution was an exclusive 2 stroke series.. Once that was done and their future secured - yeah sure they gave the 4 strokes a look in with an equal displacement race the day after the exclusive 2 stroke one (which the 4 strokes lose on).
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Offline JETZcorp

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #8 on: November 25, 2009, 11:54:36 AM »
I disagree, actually.  I think that if someone comes on here and politely advocates four-strokes, electric bikes, or even six-strokes (yes they exist) they should be allowed to do so.  There's a lot of danger wrapped up in getting rid of people who don't agree with your premise.  It's possible that we're all wrong and someone could show statistics that four-strokes are better.  It's probably not going to bloody well happen, but they should be given the equal opportunity to speak their piece.  The road to discovery isn't lined with pillows and used tires; it's lined with people who disagree because of X, Y, and Z.  So long as X, Y, and Z aren't personal attacks, they should be embraced with open arms.  The last thing I want to see this board turn into is a massive orgy of "look how brilliant we all are!"

To keep things "on-topic" we might try subdividing the forum into sections, such as "Two-Stroke," "Four-Stroke," "Other" (Cars, trains, etc.), and "Off-Topic."  The first would obviously be the largest, with the second being a place to discuss (anti) four-stroke news, and for some to, perhaps, make their case for the thumper.  Other would be a nice place to talk about somewhat-related interests and information (such as the fact that America's railroads run on two-strokes.)  Off-Topic is self explanatory.

That's what I think.  Maybe I'm just crazy.


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Offline westyzkx

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2009, 04:06:13 PM »
« Last Edit: November 26, 2009, 04:10:51 PM by westyzkx »
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Offline JohnN

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2009, 05:50:12 PM »
While it's true that I don't mind if four-stroke folks do come on here and post, I don't think that I'll ever have a section for four-strokes.

Yes I'm interested in technology, whether it pertains to two-strokes, four-strokes, six strokes or electric bikes, the guiding principal of this site will be guided in great part by the name of the site.

Two Strokes and Motocross.

Not to say that folks can't post about all the other stuff. it's just that there are so many other forums and places for people to do that.

In my imagination I see this place as being a bit... well different. A bit more focused and certainly much more sane and respectful.

Honestly I think we should let it grow organically and see where it takes us. This is new terrain and may have some rough sections, off-cambers and steep hills that will require careful navigation.

Let's take it one step at a time! The forum has been open since November 20th - only 6 days!!

It will grow and we'll try to make it the best, most fun place to share two stroke info on the web.
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Offline AFG

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2009, 06:12:19 PM »
I for one would like to thank you for creating this forum. I really like the idea of being able to able to have intelligent (even not so intelligent but funny)dialogue about M/C's, 2T's in particular w/o getting slammed because an idea or question may seem goofy(if someone ask then it's probably not goofy to them). The zero forum "bully" policy is great. It is kinda cool to see this forum at the start. Most probably feel the same.

Offline Helmut Clasen

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2010, 02:22:53 PM »
Hello John.
I read your beginning and I agree totally with you.
Being a member on several foren around the world(on which I often help with information I have collected over the 50+ years of racing and over 35 years running a dealership.)I have seen some bad moufhing people.The only way to beat them is given them one warning and ban them for good at a second time.
Life can be great,and we can make it interesting for sure without idiots.
Keep on doing what you started.
Cheers...


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Offline JohnN

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2010, 06:10:13 PM »
Thank you Helmut!!

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Offline ford832

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Re: The Dangers of Message Boards - Thoughts and Tips
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2010, 06:45:45 PM »
I disagree, actually.  I think that if someone comes on here and politely advocates four-strokes, electric bikes, or even six-strokes (yes they exist) they should be allowed to do so.  There's a lot of danger wrapped up in getting rid of people who don't agree with your premise.  It's possible that we're all wrong and someone could show statistics that four-strokes are better.  It's probably not going to bloody well happen, but they should be given the equal opportunity to speak their piece.  The road to discovery isn't lined with pillows and used tires; it's lined with people who disagree because of X, Y, and Z.  So long as X, Y, and Z aren't personal attacks, they should be embraced with open arms.  The last thing I want to see this board turn into is a massive orgy of "look how brilliant we all are!"

To keep things "on-topic" we might try subdividing the forum into sections, such as "Two-Stroke," "Four-Stroke," "Other" (Cars, trains, etc.), and "Off-Topic."  The first would obviously be the largest, with the second being a place to discuss (anti) four-stroke news, and for some to, perhaps, make their case for the thumper.  Other would be a nice place to talk about somewhat-related interests and information (such as the fact that America's railroads run on two-strokes.)  Off-Topic is self explanatory.

That's what I think.  Maybe I'm just crazy.

Agreed.Everyone is entitled to an opinion and as for myself,I love a good argument-baiting and all.It makes you think,sometimes revise your opinion-or maybe give the other guy something to think about as well.On the other hand,I may be a little different,I don't even get offended by vital mx ;D
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