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The death of the forum

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Initial post: 31 May 2014 20:23:32 BDT
Last edited by the author on 20 Jul 2014 08:56:47 BDT
Malx says:
Given the lack of comment and activity on this forum is it fair to say this forum is deceased or am I being overly pessimistic.
Since I first started reading/posting three years ago the forum has been a source of interest and information but the last month has made me wonder where the contributors have gone.
I can't really believe that everything of interest has been said, or have the negative voters finally won the day.


Posted on 31 May 2014 21:50:05 BDT
Lez Lee says:
I've been thinking that too Malx. There's only the 'What are you listening to?' thread which has any sort of life. The Music Forum isn't much better, it's really only because we know each other and chat amongst ourselves that it keeps going.
I've defected to the American Classical Forum which is quite lively and there's usually something of interest.

Posted on 31 May 2014 23:08:12 BDT
Last edited by the author on 31 May 2014 23:08:29 BDT
John Ruggeri says:

We Americans seem to be a chattier lot.
I have seen you posting there and please stay with us.


Posted on 1 Jun 2014 09:36:52 BDT
I think there are various reasons the forum has become moribund. It only ever had a relatively small number of regular contributors and some now seem to have given up.

Some of the discussions turned nasty and this possibly put some people off.

The constant negative voting by one individual upset some but not me. I actually became more annoyed by people continually drawing attention to his (probably) antics. I ignored the person though latterly I have started giving positive votes to the people who were the victims of his irritating habit.

Certain subjects and composers have been over-discussed and I gave up on most discussions because I knew in advance what certain people were going to say before they had said it. No doubt some people think the same way about me.

I haven't even been contributing much to the 'What are you listening to' thread but that has partly because I have been doing more reading than listening and partly because the stuff I have been listening to has been collections of short works and too time consuming to enter the details thereof.

I tried the US forum for a time and gave up. Many of the features (and the people) who irritate me in the UK are present there also but that is a purely personal reaction.

Posted on 1 Jun 2014 10:32:43 BDT
MacDoom says:
Long periods of inactivity happened before (some two years ago, I think) and will no doubt happen again. Somehow, new blood tends to find its way here nevertheless, and something will probably kick-start it at some point. At the beginning of better weather, many people may prefer a real life over a virtual one. Quite a healthy attitude, too!

Posted on 1 Jun 2014 12:12:27 BDT
Mole says:
I took a look at the forum a couple of days ago. I was surprised at how it had dwindled so I did some historical research to see what had happened. You all used to call me a troll because I was forthright and personal in my views. And because I dislike posers. But all the time you had one or two real trolls amongst you. And you let them attack forum member after forum member until the most active and stimulating people were gone. There are other example in the threads before the end but just ask yourself what happened to JJD and why none of you defended him from gratuitous attacks.

Posted on 1 Jun 2014 12:45:37 BDT
Last edited by the author on 1 Jun 2014 13:10:26 BDT
Lez Lee says:
Mole - unfortunately JJD was far from sweetness and light himself. He was often unreasonable and intractable and after a couple of run-ins I stopped responding to him as I don't like confrontation - not very edifying for onlookers either!

Posted on 1 Jun 2014 18:20:04 BDT
kenpat says:
There may be many like myself. I come here every day. John Ruggeris posts are the normal begining to my musical day. What I don't do is post very often, I have no explanation why. (I don't make many posts in any forums I belong to) I do appreciate the knowledge, anecdotes and inspiration to be gained here, and when I remember vote yes to counter the sod who does the opposite.
I will try to do better in future.

Posted on 2 Jun 2014 06:23:56 BDT
Nick says:
My impression is that any forum divides roughly into those who start a debate/thread and those who react to a thread or comment. Any thread - except the generic "what are you listening to" etc have a natural life span before becoming moribund no matter how interesting or worthwhile the topic. If you look at the threads here there have been very few new ones in recent times and hence little new debate. The people who are no longer contributing - whether one agreed with their opinions or not - were the ones who initiated these new threads. As it happens I'm no great starter of threads myself but enjoy contributing to those started by others. Perhaps we should all try to start some new ones on NEW topics!

Posted on 2 Jun 2014 09:10:07 BDT
gille liath says:
BONG! The bell tolls...

It's not just this one; all the forums have been dying a slow death. It may be partly because, about a year ago, Amazon removed the links from the product pages. That makes it almost impossible for any new people and new views to find their way to the forums. On the Religion forum that possibly isn't regarded as a drawback, but for most of the others it is.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 09:28:43 BDT
Last edited by the author on 2 Jun 2014 09:29:29 BDT
Bruce says:
As Nick says - I have tried to start threads - especially about the Proms, which I see as a hugely positive thing for CM as a whole in this country - but generally I get condescension, sneering or indifference, with the odd fellow afficianado chiming in - but not enough to sustain a forum.

Posted on 2 Jun 2014 14:55:28 BDT
Lez Lee says:
Bruce, I think the problem with the Proms is that they are seen by many as 'Londoncentric'.
The posters on your 2014 Proms thread are all able to attend in person, the rest of us rely on radio and TV. You might well get more interest when they're actually broadcast. I didn't notice any sneering, though!

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 17:55:36 BDT
kenpat says:
I think there is a general sniffiness about BBC Radio 3 as a whole, not just the proms. Some people liken it to Classic FM, or accuse it of dumbing down, I think it does a far greater service to classical music. Almost all new music I hear I hear first on R3.
Like the phoenix I'm sure the forum will rise again.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 19:22:02 BDT
enthusiast says:
I've stopped visiting regularly as nothing much was happening here. I'm not sure why but the habit of visiting was surprisingly easy to drop. I don't think it would once have been so easy.

But I do have a question to post so perhaps I will provide a test of Nick's theory that new threads may inject new life.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 20:44:02 BDT
As someone who has been sniffy about R3 and accused it of dumbing down and aping the worst aspects of Classic FM I should reply. I was specifically criticising its morning output. In a desperate attempt to win listeners they introduced phone-ins and endless brainless witter, all introduced by droids reading from an autocue. There must have been other complaints as, on Sunday morning at least, they have reverted to minimal chat and knowledgeable presenters. I may now
even try their weekday offerings.

Posted on 2 Jun 2014 21:49:48 BDT
Lez Lee says:
Geoffrey, I'm sorry to report that weekday mornings haven't changed significantly. There's still the pointless, idiotic 'quiz' and exhortations to 'tweet' etc. I can't believe Rob Cowan and co. voluntarily embrace this. However the recent 'guests' have been mostly interesting and knowledgeable about music.
What really annoys me is that R3 asks for comments and suggestions and yet, without warning, they cancelled their only classical requests programme on Sunday afternoons. One of my favourite programmes and I'm still seething.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 22:18:25 BDT
kenpat says:
Geoffrey, I dislike the phone ins as well. However if it keeps the last bastion of quality music alive then I'll live with it. Where else will we get the chance to discover Mieczyslaw Weinberg, this weeks composer, or hear new music as played in Hear & Now on a Saturday night. I just feel the good far outweighs the bad and that we should really appreciate the fact that it exists. I'm sure there are classical music enthusiasts around the word that really envy us.
I feel much appreciation for these CM forums, they educate, enlighten and entertain me. That adds to my enjoyment of my music.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 22:41:08 BDT
Bruce says:
You seem to be equating the Proms with Radio 3 - but my consumption is either by attending in person or by watching events on BBC4 with surround sound in HD - I hardly ever listen to Radio 3.

The Proms is the biggest festival of Classical Music we have and of course it's going to be in London, where there are the biggest potential audiences.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jun 2014 09:27:30 BDT
kenpat: I used to listen every morning right through to (and including) Composer of the Week but the phone-ins, guests (a mixed blessing) and witless blather put me off. I am listening now, for the first time in months, to give R3 another chance and there is a promising line-up presented by Rob Cowan; it is a matter of 'so far, so good'.

There is much in the afternoon and evening programming that is excellent but they are not the times I usually listen.

For convenience, ie. my laziness, I would like to be able to just listen to R3. However, since I switched broadband providers I now have access to literally hundreds of radio stations worldwide, many of them classical stations. As you would expect they vary greatly in quality and I haven't had time to find the best ones yet but some offer competition to R3. I realise that not everyone has this option but it is one that is going to grow in the future.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jun 2014 11:52:32 BDT
kenpat says:
Geoffrey, if you're streaming then you could do a lot worse than stream in the iPlayer some of the Through the Night shows from radio 3. My goto when I'm feeling lazy. A varied selection from around.
Also would recomend Venice Radio. Mainly baroque and early music but very nice.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jun 2014 11:58:10 BDT
kenpat says:
Bruce, It's very difficult to separate the two, you are indeed fortunate in being able to attend, but I suspect (as Lez Lee pointed out) the majority of people on here can't.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jun 2014 12:02:25 BDT
kenpat says:
My horror story re R3 is one morning going early with my wife to do the shopping, (R3 is always on in the car) and they gave the result on the news for a match I'd recorded to watch later. SPORT ON RADIO 3!!!!! Thank god they've never repeated the offence. She thought it was hilarious as I fumed and fretted all the way round Asda.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jun 2014 12:13:03 BDT
kenpat: I can play the broadband radio through my hi-fi. The app I have is called tunein but I also use the BBC iPlayer from time to time so I will look for Through the Night. I haven't explored tunein very thoroughly; it arrived ready installed on my new PC and I have been overwhelmed by all the new gadgets, features, apps etc - most have now been discarded.

There seems to be quite a number of German classical stations available and this morning I tried out BR Klassik - it had a fairly eclectic selection of music - Poulenc, Saint-Saens, Ronald Binge, J Strauss II, Chopin and more. More importantly, less chat.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jun 2014 12:22:02 BDT
Last edited by the author on 3 Jun 2014 12:22:35 BDT
Bruce says:
Watch the Proms on BBC4 - much better! Especially in HD with surround sound.

Posted on 3 Jun 2014 12:29:23 BDT
Lez Lee says:
Geoffrey/ kenpat
If you have any sort of TV recording box or VCR you can record radio just as you can TV. I've been successfully recording 'Through the Night' for years. There's the advantage of being able to fast-forward unwanted bits, too.
I've always found iPlayer quite fiddly to use.
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