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Old 11-29-2005, 02:49 PM
joseelias joseelias is offline
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 871
Default Motivation is down the drain…

From a long time now that I’ve personally decided to reduce the amount of weekly postings. The pressure of posting / critiquing everyday kills all the fun and turns a pleasure into an obligation in my case.

Still, I must say that all these recurrent and ABSOLUTELY STUPID threads about:

- Imaginary “point-trades” – sometimes it even sounds like a crime compared to international drug-traffic…
- friendships - that are compared to Mafia-connections full of ill-intentioned members
- smileys use - as if it it’s use has any real influence over a members improvement and learning
- Competitive attitude of some members - look at TE as a contest for the best photo and not as a sharing community

…do in fact lower a lot my motivation and the will to participate. Many times the stress of these accusations in the forums drains strength that I could use in critiquing. But it’s my nature. I cannot shut up when I see injustices being done.

All these accusations are made toward a group of members, known usually as “Active Members”, and this attitude is self-destroying of TE. If people claim for more critiques why should the active members be criticized? Why not turn our attention to those that do not critique at all or very few?

Unfortunately, people seem not to realize that the biggest problem in TE is that the number of critiques written is far insufficient for the amount of photos posted. This problem is even bigger than the quality of what is written.

Many times I felt that by the fact that I was active, a lot of pressure was over me. As there were few members critiquing, new members always end up falling on those who participate more actively, asking for help. If more members were critiquing, more members would get attention, and less ignored photos/photographers would exist. And this leads to the second important issue: Critique Quality

Besides the fact that I’m not a pro and cannot give “prize-winning” critiques, the amount of pressure over me makes that the quality of my critiques may be lower than it could be. Of course I’m not forced to write critiques to no one, but if I see someone needing some help, I like to give it. The problem is when I feel that there are thousands of people in this situation and only some dozens contributing… Obviously the critique quality will suffer a little as less thorough critiques are probably made… And that will make “me” a target of accusations in the forums again…

Summing up, I’m today much less active because I feel that being an active member only makes me a target of IDIOT accusations. That people prefer to criticize who the way others members critique (and their activity profile) than starting themselves to critique in an active way and setting the example.

This is a very superficial analysis of the situation but it states more or less what I feel. Being active in TE does not compensate for me anymore as it did. I don’t want to be praised to be active at all, but I certainly don’t appreciate AT ALL being accused by others who haven’t contributed a tenth of what I did, in some cases…
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Old 11-29-2005, 07:52 PM
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kinginexile kinginexile is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,537
Default Re: Motivation is down the drain…

salut, Jose,

The problem is maybe that you take what is considered as a an impediment to improving the runnning of the site as something personal insulting you. I wonder why, since no one is ever pointed at in these threads you talk about. This in itself would point that you may have forgotten the idea about logging in is not to work, but have fun, learn from each other and accept some may not feel the same as you about how the community here is inter-acting. If one is happy about the site, why read the "points" threads? most of the posters who start them are not "important" members, or "impointant", ahaha.
It's easy to avoid, especially if it's a waste of time and felt as a personal insult.
Just a thought. And you know Adam is pretty much on the side of keeping things as they are. so, it's not like the castle is under attack! :-))))

about motivation, I think if one asks oneself why one takes a camera and wants to keep on shooting or improving, we will get the answer why we start to feel routine or lack of motivation. If someone wants to simply post pictures and show them to a few evryday, without asking him/herself too many questions, it can be done for years. But for many, questions about what one intends, what one is doing, what one wants to share (just for me, I don't want to share pictures, i want to share emotions and a sense of marvel at all things/people thru the mean of photography) and what is truly shared here, then, routine is indeed the enemy.
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:23 AM
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dolin dolin is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,704
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

l'esprit de compétition?
mhhhhhh je crois que tu l'as aussi il me semble non?
si je regarde certaines des photos que tu critiques, je me dis que c'est surement pas pour leur force ou leur qualité, car même mon fils serait capable de faire mieux ;) Je ne vais pas mettre d'exemples en lien car je me ferais de nouveau sensuré comme quand t'étais à l'armée ;)
Donc en votant des trucs pas terribles et en posant un vert, je pense que c'est juste pour un retour sur investissement....
et à mon avis ca va pas faire avancer le contraire, et des photos pourries on en verra toujours.
perso j'ai pris la décision de ne plus faire du copain copain et de voter uniquement ce qui me touche ou que je trouve intéressant et tant pis si je ramasse moins de points....d'ailleurs je l'ai mis en noir sur blanc dans mon intro.
Je ne veux pas te descendre en disant ca.....mais je tout le monde est libre de voter ce qu'il veut et comme il veut...donc voilà....mais je pense qu'avec ton talent, t'as pas besoin de crois que tout le monde connait la valeur de ton boulot !
C'était peut-être pas le bon endroit pour en parler....mais pas grave ;)
En espérant que tu prennes la chose dans le bon sens.
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:33 AM
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naxius naxius is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 911
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

Thanks to all for your feedback about this situation. I found it very interesting to share our thoughts and to try to see what we could do to tackle this issue.
From what I understand, this is not an easy thing but it's true that if people stay in their own position it won't be a success.

First of all, as said by Fred (dolin) we could/should try to be really honest in our critiques and comments we write each other. Do we want to increase our ego by writing so many Wow! Great! Breatheless! bla bla bla and to auto congratulate ourself about our pseudo talent?
Or do we want to put TE at a better level with really constructive critiques and comments?

Today I tried to writer better critiques and comments but sometimes, it can be really difficult to write "good" critiques. But I am sure that by doing this exercise it would be a great benefit for our little talent we have.

So guys, friends, eFriends I should say ;-) stop with this win-win excercise and try to say really what you feel when you see a photograph. The play is worth to try.

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Old 11-30-2005, 01:17 AM
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toni_al toni_al is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 304
Default Re: Motivation is down the drain…

Personnellement je partage 100% l’avis de Jose elias.

Tout le monde connais les buts el les règles de TE, mais pire que des critiques légers c’est des poster et ne jamais participer, cela n’encourage personne, et personne en profite, c’est mon avis
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Old 11-30-2005, 09:42 PM
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MKING MKING is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 376
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

This is like any other web-based community-- you put opinionated people together and you'll get discussions about 'issues'. And you can't say we're all not opinionated; we're photographers and having an interpretation or idea is the crux of our passion.

What is brilliant about this place is that it's so open-- we all have our ups and downs and you can rekindle your interest either by taking some time off from this environment or by throwing yourself deeper into it.

I think we need to think A LOT less about the 'how' this place works and 'how' photography works and get back to the 'why' and the 'what'. At least the how is definitely secondary. EG: The TOS policing of late has lost the spirit of its implementation-- it's there to safeguard against photos of pets, friends and flowers that lack any reason or opinion behind them.

Photography is a tool to communicate with and we have a ready audience here. What do we want to say to it and why do we feel it's important, what can be say about the places we've been and why do we say them? The joy of TE is that it gives us all a forum to express our ideas about where we've been or where we live-- it isn't just postcards and facts locked in a 600X800 frame. Less 'how' and more 'what/why'. If we're feeling lost as a community then maybe it's time to sit down and work out what we want to say, perhaps then those who have become disillusioned with TE will return.
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Old 11-30-2005, 10:25 PM
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simonekarl simonekarl is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 124
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

Dear All
If I may add my thoughts here.
I belive that when writing a critique it should be honest, tactful, polite and if possible helpful.

generally we tend to critique the higher stanard images shown here, and the crtiques tend to state the obvious (beautifl colours, great DOF etc etc) but to write a critique is actually very difficult and time consuming. At least for me anyway. How can I, a humble beginer critique photos from the masters? The answear is simple I do want I can and I'm honest about my comments, even if it goes against the grain. After all I might not be able to give a technical critic but I can state my taste.

Secondly we photographers are not just taking photos to post on TE are we? Only a very small percentage of what I shoot, I post here. When pointing my camera I am looking for THE shot, not looking for soemthing that I can post on TE. Again just my opinion.

Generally speaking I am very happy how TE works. A lot of us have jobs and families and can not spend many hours being active. We all do what we can. I try to write between 3-8 good critiques a day, sometimes it will be more depending on the postings. But I am well aware that there are many members who want to critique with smileys much much more. It's up to them.

Recently I have been admiring some of the really old postings here on TE, and when I have time I will critque them too. The memembers might not even be active anymore, but it doesn't matter, as my opinion will be associated with their image for everyone to see.

OK enough blabbering now, I hope I managed to get across what I feel. Jose I understand how you feel, I am sorry to here about it. I hope it is just a rut, and you will be posting again soon.

Happy snapping
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Old 11-30-2005, 10:34 PM
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ngraha ngraha is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 19
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

I think you are correct.

I have been an active member for a while and feel that not enough people are posting reviews of images.

I have lots of views on my images however I very rarely get feedback. I take it this is because people do not like the images.

If people do not like my images - they are bland? The composition is out? Light? Whatever I would really like to have negative feedback. In fact I prefer the negative feedback and workshops more than anything. I use this site as a tool in improving my knowledge and skills as well as learning about other places and culture. Too often however people feel they should only leave nice positive remarks or nothing at all.

I have also noted that more and more recently there are images which go against the TOS - close up flower images - etc which I have had removed for this reason. Maybe the standards of the administrators are slipping or maybe the workload is too great. If you remove my images because the go against the TOS - then you should do the same with other peoples images which also go against the TOS.


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Old 12-01-2005, 03:59 PM
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eleparc eleparc is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 5,326
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

I fully agree with most of what has been said in this forum.

May I add that being honest, does not mean slash on people just for the fun of it. Always remember how hurt we felt ourselves when some comments were cruel or inappropriate on our own photos. So my recommendation would be to first try to find one positive element in the photo (there is always something worthy to see) and then only explain why we do not like it or feel there is something wrong with it, emphasizing on the improvements that could be made or things that could be corrected in the future. After all don't we all try to improve as photographers?

Some critics have helped me improve more than some congratulations... But having said that, please do not refrain to say all the good you may think of my own posts... haha! once again it is a matter of balance, and i'd rather not comment sometimes than be mean.

here is what I do :I choose my preferred photographers through my personal lists and concentrate on them. Now once in a while, i discover someone new because he/she commented on my posts, or because someone tells me about him/her. Anyhow, i do not have the time to review the gallery on a daily basis and there is too much material to be seen nowadays to be exhaustive. And i always try to go and check the gallery of those people i do not concentrate on through my lists and who have taken the time to put some words on my photos. And i assure you that I have discovered some marvels that are now added to my lists...;-)

This is my thought.

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Old 12-03-2005, 09:48 PM
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Hanssie Hanssie is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 880
Default Re: TErs, do something to help TE spirit

For a long time, I also had the idea, that the spirit of TE has "gone". TE is too big, too many members, new ones who find the site and post the most "common" pictures, I'm busier on TL now.
Also on "the other site" I commented uncritiqued pictures, to try telling why it is and what could be done but it's really not a very thankful job, if I may say. Sometimes I have a look here and sometimes I post a picture but as said, it's not the same anymore and I also miss a lot of gone members....
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