Thank you for your commitment to this community and to this project.
I woke up this morning to several texts, some email, and even more PM's. I'll admit, I was pretty disgusted when I threw in the towel and went to bed last night. People sometimes forget that mods have lives too. We have jobs (not always safe from layoff), marriages (not always safe from strife), children (not always safe, happy, and healthy), and more tolerance than most people should be required to have (which is not always impermeable). Last night I lost my cool and kicked the proverbial dog. For that I am sorry.
We spend tending to this forum - following discussions - reading the subtext over long-periods of time to get a feel for what people are really saying. We do it because we believe we can do this better than its been done before. Our goal from the outset has been to repair the fractured community, to restore the self-moderating community that once was, and to share a little joy with regard to our collective affinity for PRS Guitars. When I read comments from people saying that "this is one of the most respectful guitar forums [they've] ever visited", I know all of the hard work (most of which is incredibly subtle to those who just skim the discussion) is paying off.
But lately... I see a few people poisoning the well and it REALLY pisses me off. There are people who seem to come here and see how much they can get - or how much they can away with. I do not understand this mentality in any form. I see a lot of taunting going on lately as well. People are posting completely harmless comments and then saying "Gee, I hope I don't get banned for this" or "this will probably get the thread locked by saying this... ". What's that all about? On the flip side, we have people posting things that aren't harmless at all and saying "gee, I hope this doesn't get the thread locked." Well of course it will. Should we just ban people instead locking the thread? Do we give up on the idea that we all grow? That we all have the potential to learn from our mistakes? That people might come to know, love and protect a community they once treated with disdain? I think about my own selfish behavior and taunting posts when I joined BaM in 2006. I sure am glad Jamie, Big Mike, and Frankie were tolerant. I didn't always agree with them but they were big enough to accept me the way I was instead of taking the easy road and clicking the ban button.
Those lessons must be applied. So I ask you... should I just ban the offenders or do we lock threads to help shape the discussion? Do we become the monster we're trying to destroy? I hope not.
I agree, there have been a few more threads than usual locked around here lately. In my opinion, it's because there are a lot of people testing boundaries. The rebel in me understand that need but some people seem to be on a mission. And they know that I don't want to so they take advantage of the situation. That's not fair. It's bad enough that we have people logging on under multiple usernames to continually grind their axe. I don't have to deal with that too. But... it comes with the territory.
Let's talk about those boundaries for a moment. Do you know how much porn is available, for free, on the net? Why do we need it here? Look, I'm a straight guy. I like hot chicks too. I like photos of hot chicks. I LOVE hot chicks with guitars. We can have a thread called Hot chicks with PRS guitars but how long to do you think it would be until someone posted a photo that went too far? Given all the bear poking going on in the last few weeks, I'd guess it would happen on page one. That SUCKS because the thread would get locked and then someone who'd love to see this place fail would say "Hey look, another thread got locked. What a shocker."
Lame. Lame. Lame.
I totally get the need to find out other ways we might all be connected. It's human nature. But there should be some BASIC sensibility that we, as grown-ass-men (and a few ladies) should apply.
Look, this site isn't trying to be all things to all people. If that's what you want, go to the gear page. Its an AWESOME web site for all things gear-related and you can discuss just about anything you want (but even they have boundaries). There are also lots of places to discuss guns. I am a legally documented, gun carrying, supporter of the 2nd amendment. I can and will use that right to protect my other rights. But THIS is not the place for me to argue over those rights. This is the place for me to argue over a forum guitar. So let's argue over a forum guitar and not all the money-grubbing capitalists who somehow managed to screw you over (again), shall we?
I've met with Jack (President of PRS Guitars) on three occasions about this project. There are NO promises on the table from PRS guitars but I haven't been told "no" yet. There are details I can't share yet; things I think you guys will be pretty happy about IF we get the green light. But we have to agree on a SINGLE set of specs for about 25 guitars or this isn't going anywhere. People are going to have to let go of the idea that they're going to get a forum guitar that exactly matches what they would build for themselves through the PS program. And the SE guitar WILL NOT HAPPEN. It's too expensive for a short run. There must be compromise on specifications. I have let go of many things I want for myself. To such a degree, in fact, that I might not buy one at all. But this guitar isn't about me. It's about doing something together.
Now, I need a head count on Rev 3. In or out?