- Martin Thoene
- Posts: 11186
- Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2005 5:38 am
- Location: Toronto.....Actually, I've been on LOL since September 1998
Of late, the Moderation Team have noticed an increase of the number of PM's that they have been receiving. For some this has reached quite a high level.
We exist as a kind of LOL police if you like to ensure that this great website continues to be a productive and pleasant place for people to come and receive fresh knowledge about the fish we all love. Historically this site has and continues to receive accolades for how "nice" it is to be here.
LOL is maintained as the prime learning facility on the web for those who want to increase their knowledge of Loaches and better serve the pets they bring into their homes. These forums and the LOL website itself are constantly linked from other websites because of the depth of knowledge and experience gathered here. This is good and something that everyone who participates here should be justly proud of.
Education is at its best when disseminated to the maximum number of people. The Internet is unquestionably the best spreader of knowledge on an international level that mankind has ever had access to. The keeping of Loaches in a proper way has without doubt increased dramatically since LOL's earliest version in 1996. That is because a dedicated team of enthusiasts have joined one by one and their own knowledge has grown and matured. Through dedicated study and observation we now know what works with these fish.
People recognize this and the LOL moderators are truly honoured that people trust their knowledge and send them PM's asking questions about their fish. Sometimes people say that they're sending a PM because they think their question is "silly" or "stupid"....they're embarrassed in other words. We see this a lot with new fishkeepers or people who are new to Loaches specifically.
The only "silly" or "stupid" question is the one you don't ask. This is true in all of life. Sure, in life there are people who will put you down for stuff like that, but here we try steadfastly to nurture a proper learning environment and will jump on anyone who puts another down for a "stupid" question. This is just one part of why this is a "nice" place.
Asking any question best serves the fish we keep because the answers received on an open forum will be viewed by many, many eyes and there's no way of knowing how many others (and the fish they keep) may benefit because you asked that "stupid" question. Asking it in a PM only benefits you and your fish. You also only get one answer or opinion that way.
We have always seen LOL as a community. You, the member are as much a part of it as us moderators are. We want to help you, but we want you to help others too. Asking those questions, even if they seem a bit off the wall can reap enormous benefits for the increased knowledge of others. Often we only see the problem we ourselves are having with our fish. It's easy to forget that there can be many others who might read your post and the answers it generates who are having exactly the same issues. They benefit too........and their fish.
Ultimately, that's why we exist. To spread knowledge of these awesome fish and how to keep them correctly in home aquaria. Just placing text on page does that. Countless unknown eyes all across the world may see the words. It doesn't matter if they're registered members or just lurkers. If the fish benefit then it's all good.
Please, please don't take this as us not wanting to receive PM's. It's not. We are highly eager to receive your concerns or suggestions for improving the site. All suggestions are welcome and will be discussed with the other moderators. Good ideas will get taken on-board and incorporated. We are always looking to improve Loaches Online in any way possible.
You can PM any one of the team. We all have busy lives so please remember that answering can be delayed by life, family, business, illness or whatever. We're only human.
An additional paragraph relating to PM's is now added to the Forum Rules so that newcomers may be aware:
Just like anything in life, as soon as we get up the courage to air that "silly" or "stupid" thing, we find others feel the same way, or are facing the same problems. It also seems once it's out in the open, people are more understanding than you had thought. Thank-you for addressing this so openly and honestly, and for maintaining that standard of "niceness" on this site. I have felt somewhat embarassed to ask some things myself, and I know there are others who feel the same. But I believe having this feeling is also showing you care, and are willing to ask questions in order to do better. There is so much to be learned in this hobby, and for me, (as I'm sure it is with many others), that's part of what keeps it interesting, involving, and fun. After all, we all had to start somewhere.
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