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Remembering back... Steven

This is the place to ask your BBQ questions, share information, and more.
Post Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:02 pm
beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2288
Location: Southern Californy
I remember the good ol' days when this forum hustled and bustled with activity, participation, and interaction. Those were the days when many, many folk had a CharGriller SuperPro or similar. In fact, many of us found our way here through the CharGriller site. As many moved on to other alternative models of "pits," (eg. Big Green Egg), so they moved on to other forums.

Do you remember Steven? Are you listening? I yearn for this forum to be like it once was-- THE forum to be, rather than its current ghost town like state. May I make, for now, two simple suggestions?-- One, take the initiative to get on the new Kamado bandwagon (which is going to give the BGE a run for its money), and direct those people here, perhaps through CG, or something along those lines. Remember, when this place bustled, the overwhelming popularity of the CG thread. Also, I would like to offer testimony as to how valuable and important such a simple thing like a plethora of emoticons for incorporating into posts really is. People just have too much fun with those, and can communicate on an extra special level.

I, for one, would sure like to know that you care about your forum. I apologize if I am missing something.
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Post Fri Apr 12, 2013 8:03 am
d_holck well done
well done

Posts: 846
Location: Illinois
It has certainly quieted down around here. A couple years back, new threads filled a page every day or two.
"... mmmmmmm 'bacon'."

CG Outlaw w/SFB
UDS
Old classic Weber Kettle

Post Fri Apr 12, 2013 9:05 am
ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 7572
Location: Stoughton, WI
Back in "the day" a lot of us first came here to ask questions and gain knowledge when grilling and barbecuing was picking up speed as a national pastime. Since then most of the questions have been answered and people are far more experienced, which contributes greatly to the shift to a results-oriented board. And few people are going to grill and photograph and post on a daily basis, so volume drops.

Plus it seems to me that barbecuing isn't as hot (ha ha) as it once was. A lot of people were getting into it in a short amount of time, and I'd be willing to bet that a good number of them peaked at the novice griller stage or dropped out completely. But that's just my observation.

Post Fri Apr 12, 2013 1:00 pm
Trollby well done
well done

Posts: 1303
Location: MadCity, WI

I know for me that my job and other family stuff makes the all day smokes not as frequent as I would like.

I now find that when I plan a smoke dinner I make 5-6 times as much as I need and divide up in vacuum bags for later meals.

Also I have been bad not posting, even when grilling and smoking lately.

Post Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:21 pm
beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2288
Location: Southern Californy
ScreamingChicken wrote:
Back in "the day" a lot of us first came here to ask questions and gain knowledge when grilling and barbecuing was picking up speed as a national pastime. Since then most of the questions have been answered and people are far more experienced, which contributes greatly to the shift to a results-oriented board. And few people are going to grill and photograph and post on a daily basis, so volume drops.

Plus it seems to me that barbecuing isn't as hot (ha ha) as it once was. A lot of people were getting into it in a short amount of time, and I'd be willing to bet that a good number of them peaked at the novice griller stage or dropped out completely. But that's just my observation.


No doubt there is much truth in what you say, Brad. There is something however, that still begs the question-- Why are a few other forums bursting at the seams? I mean, it's entirely possible if someone does not respond to one's post, that post can get buried off the front page in as little as two hours! I see plenty of newbies there as well as seasoned pitmasters (many of whom I recognize from here!). I very much appreciate your undying dedication above and beyond the call of duty to this forum, Brad. I don't know how you do it under these circumstances, and you deserve quite the commendation. But look, see?-- still no input from Steven or his staff! Where's the passion? Where's the obsession?

There is so much that can be done to get folks back here, including something as simple as issuing a general PM inviting at least the former members with a significant number of posts back. There are all kinds of ways and things. Revise the forum for a new birth. Subtle changes can make a world of difference.
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Post Fri Apr 12, 2013 4:52 pm
Patdakat medium-rare
medium-rare

Posts: 60

I'll speak for myself.
The reason I don't post on a regular basis, is because I have other cooking interests besides BBQ, such as pizza and ethnic cooking.
I use the forum for research. I post when I have something new to add or contribute to.
I don't have time to read posts that say good looking chicken, ditto, save some for me, etc. It's no wonder that people lose interest.
It seems to me that you want forum that resembles Facebook, a social interaction among members so to speak.
Steven is not the one that is going to make that happen, only members who have the same interest will.

pat

Post Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:36 pm
beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2288
Location: Southern Californy
Patdakat wrote:
I'll speak for myself.
The reason I don't post on a regular basis, is because I have other cooking interests besides BBQ, such as pizza and ethnic cooking.
I use the forum for research. I post when I have something new to add or contribute to.
I don't have time to read posts that say good looking chicken, ditto, save some for me, etc. It's no wonder that people lose interest.
It seems to me that you want forum that resembles Facebook, a social interaction among members so to speak.
Steven is not the one that is going to make that happen, only members who have the same interest will.

pat


For someone who is speaking for himself, you sure do have a lot to say about other folk, Pat. I don't think you have enough posts under your belt to understand a vested interest in this forum. Moreover, this forum IS intended to be socially interactive. Hence, Steven himself refers to it as a "community." At least you are partly right about the role of members-- people who just lurk and use this place are just part of the problem rather than being part of the solution.
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Post Sat Apr 13, 2013 9:15 am
d_holck well done
well done

Posts: 846
Location: Illinois
Trollby wrote:
I know for me that my job and other family stuff makes the all day smokes not as frequent as I would like.

I now find that when I plan a smoke dinner I make 5-6 times as much as I need and divide up in vacuum bags for later meals.

Also I have been bad not posting, even when grilling and smoking lately.


beercuer wrote:
Patdakat wrote:
I'll speak for myself.…
pat


… I don't think you have enough posts under your belt to understand a vested interest in this forum.


OK so here’s a couple thoughts. Totally agree with Trollby, and this happens to me too. Combine that with some of the challenges in posting photos (certainly not quite as simple for novices as it is on FB) and you’ve got some factors that might be contributing to the situation.

That said, beercuer, I’d also point out that all of us were once novices, or folks with low post counts. When a new member joined, there used to be 10-15 “welcome to the board” replies to their early posts. Why is that not the case? Don’t know, but it’s on all of us to reach out in welcoming new/novice members. Just about everything I know about smoking and grilling, I learned here.

Your point in terms of involvement from Steven is spot on. I hope this comes across as dialogue, not “thumping”... I admire and respect your point of view, your commitment to the board, and your intentions in bringing it up.
"... mmmmmmm 'bacon'."

CG Outlaw w/SFB
UDS
Old classic Weber Kettle

Post Sat Apr 13, 2013 11:42 am
beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2288
Location: Southern Californy
d_holck wrote:
OK so here’s a couple thoughts. Totally agree with Trollby, and this happens to me too. Combine that with some of the challenges in posting photos (certainly not quite as simple for novices as it is on FB) and you’ve got some factors that might be contributing to the situation.

That said, beercuer, I’d also point out that all of us were once novices, or folks with low post counts. When a new member joined, there used to be 10-15 “welcome to the board” replies to their early posts. Why is that not the case? Don’t know, but it’s on all of us to reach out in welcoming new/novice members. Just about everything I know about smoking and grilling, I learned here.

Your point in terms of involvement from Steven is spot on. I hope this comes across as dialogue, not “thumping”... I admire and respect your point of view, your commitment to the board, and your intentions in bringing it up.


Thanks for your input, Doug. Yeah, I guess I am running in "tough love" mode now, and you raise some interesting points and insights.

I do really like the new folk, especially now more than ever to regrow this place. I just regret losing some that only appear for a little while, and there does not seem to be much chance in getting them back. Excellent point about the welcoming committee. I know how much I appreciated that when I first joined here too. I don't know either what happened to that tradition. I do know how upset I was when I saw that some were making picture drops, and completely ignored Brad's posts for several days. And I certainly appreciate how disappointing the new PhotoBucket can be to some of us.

I know all these issues can be resolved. It's extra tough when there are just a few of us. I've seen the other forums, so I still maintain that sense of hope.
Got beer???

Post Sat Apr 13, 2013 1:22 pm
ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 7572
Location: Stoughton, WI
Pat does make a good point about the different ways people can use the board. For some it's a reference material while for others it's more of a social site, and it's beneficial both ways.

When we came back online after Hurricane Sandy one of the first things I did was PM all members with 250 posts or less and a few select others who'd become inactive, in hopes that at least some of them would be more active again.

I'm hoping that everyone's following this thread. Post suggestions here and I'll make sure they get to Workman. Thanks!

Post Sat Apr 13, 2013 2:46 pm
Seattle-Q well done
well done

Posts: 439
Location: Kirkland, WA
I check the board everyday when I get home from work.

I would not mind seeing a non grilling/smoking section. I don't grill as often as I used too and have moved on to other types of cooking. I really got into homemade bread and pizza dough for a while and then got into slow cooker cooking for a while too. Now I am on a big homemade pasta kick.

I would love to share and ask or answer questions about other types of cooking styles but this forum is for BBQ and for to talk about Steven's books not just a general cooking forum like cheftalk.com or egullet.org

There is a nice community here sure and I wish I could contribute more.

Post Sat Apr 13, 2013 4:23 pm
beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2288
Location: Southern Californy
ScreamingChicken wrote:

I'm hoping that everyone's following this thread. Post suggestions here and I'll make sure they get to Workman. Thanks!


Way to go, Brad!!! THANKS. Until you posted that, and not getting a response from Steven or his office, I really had one foot out the door for good.
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Post Sat Apr 13, 2013 4:32 pm
beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2288
Location: Southern Californy
Seattle-Q wrote:
I check the board everyday when I get home from work.

I would not mind seeing a non grilling/smoking section. I don't grill as often as I used too and have moved on to other types of cooking. I really got into homemade bread and pizza dough for a while and then got into slow cooker cooking for a while too. Now I am on a big homemade pasta kick.

I would love to share and ask or answer questions about other types of cooking styles but this forum is for BBQ and for to talk about Steven's books not just a general cooking forum like cheftalk.com or egullet.org

There is a nice community here sure and I wish I could contribute more.


I think you have a brilliant idea there, SQ, about a section for alternative discussion-- from inhouse cooking to even just general shoot the breeze interaction. That's just pure genius. It fulfills the needs of those who wish for more interaction, as well as a narrow focus for those who have neither time nor much inclination to get involved on that kind of level. (Like you, I do a lot of cooking indoors as well).
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Post Sun Apr 14, 2013 5:04 pm
Old Smoker well done
well done

Posts: 1247
Thank you Beercuer for this post and spot on, this forum has changed significantly over the past few years, the new look is nice but could still use a little tweaking but it seems some of the biggest drop in followers came when whole sections started disappearing the Chargriller thread being the biggest one and I know the kind of grill or smoker one uses is usually based on what one can afford but then there was this large turn where all I saw was BGE this and that and how bad everyone wanted one the forum seemed like it was loosing it's diversity no one was simply saying here is what I accomplished today but look what I did on the egg, no offense to the many owners of BGE here, they are a very nice grill but a tad to pricey for me, I like to cook and this place was a great place for info and input. I don't intend to be a gourmet chef or be an outstanding master of the grill like Steven so I read a little here now and then but rarely post because it seems like who really cares if it wasn't done on an egg. Most people can see what you cook on by your signature or the pictures you post and if a novice comes in here with questions about an ECB,WSM,CG or SNP or something like that they'd think they came to the wrong place maybe I just need to come here more often but this is one of the reasons I don't come here like I use to. I have seen questions asked about other grill/smokers with little to no reply. This is only my opinion and based on my observations during my sparse visits .
22.5 WSM - Chargriller - Traeger Texas
I cook to eat not to compete

Post Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:19 am
CharredGriller User avatar
BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 5900
Location: Central Alberta, Canada
Here are a few things to keep in mind as well - and from a member who has been here for about ten years:

1) Steven has been posting a bit more in the past 2 1/2 years than previously, if that's any consolation. Keep in mind that for a fair bit of time he was also touring the planet picking up recipes for Planet Barbecue, starting up Primal Grill, and so on so he's busy.

2) The board is always quiet from the week after Thanksgiving to mid-April every year without exception. It's a seasonal board, for the most part and it always picks up in the spring. This year will likely be the same.

3) This board goes through phases all the time. First it was competition BBQ, then WSMs, then CharGrillers, then Kingsford issues, then Ugly Drum Smokers (UDS) and a lot of others. Now it's BGE-mania and "Click here to see the full post on my blog". That last one is a bit troubling as it draws members away from the board. A lot of those other sites won't even allow members to post URLs inb their signatures, let alone post blog links.

The point here is that trends and members come and go but the board is still here. Even with the Egg-heavy blog posts, we still get a fair bit more variety in grilling season.

Oh - and check out Steven's show Primal Grill - he's used everything from Weber Summit and kettle grills to BGEs, hibachis, UDS rigs and offset smokers - and this board reflects that. Steven was on the BGE bandwagon before there was one.

4) A bit more about BGEs: yes, it's a good unit but we've got owners of CharGriller, Weber, Broil King, Napoleon, and scads of other grills here, including CharGriller and other kamado-style cooker users. And yes, I've sensed a bit of "BGE snobbery" in some posts - sorry - but it's there sometimes!

I have to admit, though, that I sometimes just skim these posts without replying too. :oops:

Old Smoker - The only way I can see around that is for the other non-BGE members to post more. Once again, I think things will change in spring. Heck - maybe some other newfangled grill will become all the rage and then we'll have a whole bunch of new posts about it instead. :twisted:

For that matter, my BioLite camping stove has a grill attachment. Maybe that might get popular this year. :D
http://www.biolitestove.com/

5) Just a little note: the number of posts any member has doesn't reflect the amount of time any member has spent on the board. We have loyal members who've been here for 10 years who haven't posted regularly or often. They're just as welcome as anyone else and certainly aren't part of any "lurker problem".

6) As for a general "shoot the breeze" section, I don't recommend it. I've seen similar sections on other BBQ sites and they've either degenerated into off-color jokes and political rants, or interest in them just disappears once the novelty wears off. PMs work just as well.

And this being the Barbecue Bible site, I don't know if a non-grill section would fly at all. However, I've seen a ton of non-grill-related posts on this board (usually with OT in the subject), and no one's ever really raised as stink so so there's no problem with posting these to the General Discussion board.

7) Keep in mind what ScreamingChicken mentioned above - BBQing isn't necessarily as popular as it was a few years ago, and a lot of members have moved on. But once again, things may pick up in summer.

Personally, I don't post the 40-60 times a week as I used to either. This is in part because I've switched to a new job in summer of 2012 and I've been running a small business on the side since 2009 so my time is a bit more scarce. It's also in part because this has been a really long winter and I've still got spots in my yard under 2 1/2 feet of snow. The first time I grilled this year was yesterday (pork steaks) and it was still nasty enough outside that i didn't want to bring out my camera.

But once again, things may change this spring. :D
Unlike propane, you'll never wake up scorched and naked in another county because you mishandled a bag of briquettes.

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