A new Gauge One Forum

Discussion in 'G1/32' started by David Halfpenny, 12 March 2014.

  1. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    Today, G1MRA's Yahoo Group is superseded by a new group open to all Gauge One enthusiasts.
    It's called Gauge One Railways, with the abbreviation g1-rlys:

    As List Owner of both, I am trading my legendary 'tact' for intolerance of intolerance: it will be a polite and positive modelling forum, with the Association strictly Off-Topic. I shall prune chat and dross to leave a reasonably intelligible searchable Archive.

    It's not a rival to Here - to start with, it's still a Yahoo Group with a baggage of mixed feelings.
    And judging from its founder-member list, it's going to start mostly live steam and mostly 10mm scale.
    But it's There, and anyone Here may find it an additional resource and entertainment.
    [If you can't be arrised with Yahoo! ID, just subscribe to emails-only by firing a blank one to:
    g1-rlys-subscribe@yahoogroups.co.uk ]
    (Anyone who was a member of the G1MRA Group when I slammed the door can still search and view the mothballed archive. Contact me if you struggle.)
    David Halfpenny
  2. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    New-Owner Verizon will close Yahoo Groups completely on 15 December.

    So we've moved Gauge One Railways to the Groups.io platform at:
    gauge1railways groups.io Group

    All welcome regardless of what organisations you do or don't belong to.

    I have both the 2003 to 2014 and the 2014 to 2020 groups Archived.

    David Halfpenny
  3. David Naysmith

    David Naysmith New Member

    Just a general couple of comments to give you some feedback on what I think might help you get this new forum off the ground.

    I think there's a desperate need for a new gauge 1 forum as evidenced by the success of the facebook G1 group - probably 90% of my on-line gauge 1 time is spent there - and I'm not even a FB member, so I can't actually get involved or post there. The main problem is the FB format is not as easy to follow or search as the 'normal' forum format of sub-forums and specific, dedicated, easy access threads like on here.

    Another critical need is for free and open public access so potential members can make a leisurly assessment of whether or not a particular forum is for them. I cannot recall ever joining a forum where I have not had unfettered access to the sub - forums before deciding whether or not to subscribe.

    Probably another reason for the FB group success is the simple and inclusive definition of what is considered legitimate content namely - anything that runs on 45mm gauge track.

    Hope this helps .... :)
    Last edited: 20 December 2020
    Devonbelle likes this.
  4. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    It certainly helps, David, thanks!
    I agree completely with your analysis, if not all of your conclusions :)

    The Facebook Format is perfect for 'disposable' conversation, but not for archiving anything even slightly involved.
    Having said that, at least a Facebook Group does have a Keyword Search (unlike ordinary Facebook) which is useful for finding anything obscure, albeit overwhelmed by anything common.
    Since there's no subscription, I haven't grasped what anyone gains by reading the posts without signing up.
    On the other hand, I gain a great deal by requiring readers to declare an interest and an identity, even if it's faked.
    Your third point has several layers to it.
    I have fought to keep "anything that runs on 45mm gauge track" as part of the formal G1MRA Articles, and it's most certainly what I do myself. Yet both volume and diversity bring challenges in keeping people's attention - it's easy to miss things one is interested in when it's swamped by large quantities of things one isn't. I certainly find that on Facebook.

    So I'm consciously, rather than accidentally, retaining the following formula:

    For all Gauge One enthusiasts, with special but not exclusive emphasis on:
    - making models,
    -- standard gauge,
    --- British railways,
    ---- Live Steam.


    Devonbelle and isambardme like this.
  5. David Naysmith

    David Naysmith New Member

    Wow! - many thanks David for your timely responce.

    Well it seems we're broadly in agreement there - and thanks for the tip about Keyword Search, maybe it just doesn't work for non members like me.

    The phrase that springs to mind is - 'the only time I learn anything is when I stop talking' .... ;)

    But seriously, I think there's a natural order of precedence here - since you are offering people the oportunity to join your forum I think it would be apropriate to make clear just what your offer includes. Then, potential members can know what they're signing up to without first signing on and only then possibly finding out it's maybe not for them. Don't forget - that if it's really important to you to 'qualify' potential members, you can institute an 'vetting' step after they subscribe, but before approving them. I think that the fact that 'most' forums operate on this principle may indicate that it has certain advantages.

    Well of course I totally respect your right to run your forum as you see fit - and I take your point about keeping peoples attention - but why would you want to give the impression that you were discriminating - no matter how slightly - against things like the wonderful Cape 3ft6in Gauge Garrett locomotive running on 45mm track, currently being discussed on FB?

    Another possible indication that this approach maybe costing you valuable contributions, is your message count history.

    Just saying .... :)
  6. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    "if it's really important to you to 'qualify' potential members, you can institute an 'vetting' step after they subscribe, but before approving them."

    Yes, David, that's exactly what I do.

    In practice, we do have Cap / Cape Gauge. And G1MRA has approved a Special Interest Group to cater for it.
    After all, it's been the second most common Standard-for-its-Country gauge worldwide, after 1435mm.
    And one I've been modelling for 20 years.
    Message count is indeed something to keep an eye on.
    The new group kicked-off at over 100 per week from just 200 members, which was high enough to cause people to drop out. This month it's calmed down.
    Given that there are several forums to choose from, I'd prefer a gentle steam of traffic that solves real people's real problems than a catch-all display of everything going on, all in one place.
    I belonged to 9 Yahoo Groups directly related to various forms of G1, plus as many again on relevant prototypes.
    Anyway, it's there :)

  7. Devonbelle

    Devonbelle Western Thunderer

    Very interesting Davids. Ive just applied to join the FB group and the Yahoo group David H references.

    Inspired by Simon's Pomparles siding Ive got myself into G1; buying and building the excellent Bowaters Models G1 Ruston 88DS kit. Just finishing chassis and awaiting rechargeable battery kit. Im thinking of some wagons next. Its all leading to a planned 1970s/80s Black Country industrial setting; freight only.

    BTW I could not recommend the Bowater Models kit highly enough - brilliant vfm, laser cut kit, battery operated 4 wheel chassis and some clever gizmo with a chip, to control my loco on the iphone! All the best Paul aka Devonbelle