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34 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

Deltango said this: "I never took to SLU, not so much because of the hostility, but because of the design. Funny thing to say, huh?"

Yes but there is a lot to it. The overall design will always set a certain mood.

Second Life is a very good example since we have different viewers and you keep hearing people saying how much better the graphics are with one than with another. And they're right even though the render engine actually is exactly the same. It's the overall UI design that makes everything look different.

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I'm not sure what magic happened when they opened the new forum, but I am amazed by how different things feel now. The forum was an angry, intimidating place before, but now I really enjoy it here! It

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55 minutes ago, ChinRey said:

Yes but there is a lot to it. The overall design will always set a certain mood.

Second Life is a very good example since we have different viewers and you keep hearing people saying how much better the graphics are with one than with another. And they're right even though the render engine actually is exactly the same. It's the overall UI design that makes everything look different.

McLuhan's "The medium is the message" is an overstatement, but still worth contemplating. With each change in the forum software, we've observed a change in the tone and tenor (and inhabitants, for reasons Del mentioned). Design can set mood, and that's part of McLuhan's point. This thread is an expression of that.

We also observe a difference in the nature and subject of conversations we have in the forum vs those we have in-world or in RL. Social networks like Twitter and Facebook put these things under a microscope and learn how (and how much) message length and "Like" button affects the social discourse.

External moderation is often cited as the biggest lever affecting the character of this forum. I'm not sure that's true. There are other mechanisms that, intentionally or not, affect how we participate here. One of those is our own individual contributions. We collectively shape this place. Those who don't like the result leave, the rest stay... until there's another disturbance in the force.

Edited by Madelaine McMasters
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The overall design may well aid in setting an overall forum mood, but don't forget that there's something else that's different now. Lindens. In the previous versions, the moderation was done by 3rd party outfits, who could affect things in the forum but could themselves not affect a person's SL. Since this new version came into being, we've had various Lindens pop into various threads and so people may be reluctant to get into forum conflicts due to Lindens being around who can affect one's whole SL. It's a possibility.

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18 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

Since this new version came into being, we've had various Lindens pop into various threads and so people may be reluctant to get into forum conflicts due to Lindens being around who can affect one's whole SL. It's a possibility.

It certainly is a possiblity. That is, it's possible some people here are a bit cautious because they feel that way. But if the Lindens thought that way, I wouldn't have been here today. I'm not going to mention specific support tickets and other incidents of course but I can assure you that if they were the kind of people to be easily offended and prone to personal revenge, they would have found an excuse to get rid of me long ago. And they certainly wouldn't have missed the chance they had last week. ^_^

I will keep complaining about Linden Lab and the way they run Second Life because they do not really provide the level of customer service se should expect and they have a tendency to become very evasive when confronted with that. But I will never ever doubt the good intentions of any current Linden. They are doing their best, it's just that there are so many skeletons in the closet.

Before I get flooded by protests from the old-timers, yes, I do know it wasn't always so and yes, they do fall back into their old sins every now and then. Bad habits are hard to break.

Anyway, there is a positive side to having Lindens more active in the forums and I think that far outweighs any negative effects. We've always complained about LL's lack of communication, haven't we?

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Oh, I'm with you, ChinRey - and I'm an old-timer :) I've often posted that I have no time at all for Linden Lab, and that I wouldn't lift a finger to help the company. That's still true. But when I've posted it, I've always added that I mean the company and not individual Lindens, some of whom are very good people, such as Guy Linden. I'm against the company, not each employee. I would guess that many LL employees would agree with our points of view but, of course, they'd be very foolish to say it if they value their jobs.

I do think it's positive that Lindens pop in here to reply to some posts. It's very positive. I hope that it continues and doesn't fade away.

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1 hour ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

McLuhan's "The medium is the message" is an overstatement, but still worth contemplating. With each change in the forum software, we've observed a change in the tone and tenor (and inhabitants, for reasons Del mentioned). Design can set mood, and that's part of McLuhan's point. This thread is an expression of that.

We also observe a difference in the nature and subject of conversations we have in the forum vs those we have in-world or in RL. Social networks like Twitter and Facebook put these things under a microscope and learn how (and how much) message length and "Like" button affects the social discourse.

External moderation is often cited as the biggest lever affecting the character of this forum. I'm not sure that's true. There are other mechanisms that, intentionally or not, affect how we participate here. One of those is our own individual contributions. We collectively shape this place. Those who don't like the result leave, the rest stay... until there's another disturbance in the force.

The message we got before this iteration of the forum was that our forum was of no value to LL -- and neither were we faithful forum dwellers. The forum medium was a monumentally difficult and badly designed thing and no one but us cared. To those of you who nevertheless stuck it out and provided information and entertainment for lo these many years: thank you. 

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7 minutes ago, Pamela Galli said:

The message we got before this iteration of the forum was that our forum was of no value to LL -- and neither were we faithful forum dwellers. The forum medium was a monumentally difficult and badly designed thing and no one but us cared. To those of you who nevertheless stuck it out and provided information and entertainment for lo these many years: thank you. 

There is a fine line between "no value" and "priceless"!

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1 hour ago, Pamela Galli said:

The message we got before this iteration of the forum was that our forum was of no value to LL -- and neither were we faithful forum dwellers. The forum medium was a monumentally difficult and badly designed thing and no one but us cared. To those of you who nevertheless stuck it out and provided information and entertainment for lo these many years: thank you. 

I've always wondered what value the forum has to LL and presumed the attention paid to us is proportional to that value. It's gratifying to see more attention paid to us, but I'm not going to presume our value has increased, or that they've suddenly recognized it. The forum makeover and increased intention might well be preparation for Sansar. I will say that I'm enjoying the presence of Tommy, Kristin, Dakota and the others and I hope they're enjoying us in return. I like win-win.

1 hour ago, Phil Deakins said:

I'm against the company, not each employee.

I could hardly be against the company that provides SL, that's counter productive. I heap my share of criticism on LL's decisions, but my intention is generally to be constructive.

I have to bite my tongue when discussing politics for the reverse reason. I'm not against the "company", I'm against it's top "employee". And that's also potentially counterproductive, the employee is trying to run the company. So I have to step back, take a deep breath, and carefully consider what to criticize in public. Privately, though the animals in my back yard don't understand English, they know something's up.

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32 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

The overall design may well aid in setting an overall forum mood, but don't forget that there's something else that's different now. Lindens. In the previous versions, the moderation was done by 3rd party outfits, who could affect things in the forum but could themselves not affect a person's SL. Since this new version came into being, we've had various Lindens pop into various threads and so people may be reluctant to get into forum conflicts due to Lindens being around who can affect one's whole SL. It's a possibility.

I'm sure the Linden presence has some effect. I'm also sure I don't know how much. Their recent participation here doesn't make me feel there is more, less, or different moderation than before, but that's me.

I participate in several professional forums where moderators have a very light to nonexistent touch. Yet there's a marked difference between them that I attribute primarily to their structure/design and the usefulness of their search mechanisms and the presence/absense/nature of their ranking systems. One forum has a very clear layout, well thought out sections, a good search mechanism, and no member ranking (only post ranking). That forum has also been revamped at least three times since I joined in the early 2000s (each time provoking a change in the feel of the community). There are always the standard newb questions, but not many get repeated so often that the oldbies get peeved.

Another forum has almost no categorization, the search facility is a mess and ranking works like it does here. It's been that way for at least a decade. Newbs there get trashed regularly for asking "dumb" questions. I don't pretend to know the calculus for the different feel of those forums, but they do feel different and moderation isn't a big differentiator.

Meanwhile, I visit two non-technical forums that do have active moderation and it's pretty common for that moderation to be criticized... for not being active enough.

There's no way I'll ever know which levers are the most important. That seems like a job for AI.

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1 hour ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I could hardly be against the company that provides SL, that's counter productive.

I'm different. I can be against the company that provides SL, and it's not counterproductive. If I were to take steps against the company, it would be counterproductive, but I don't, so the company and it's customers are totally unaffected by my views.

To be more specific, I am against the company's policies and attitudes towards its customers. They come from top management, and not from most of the employees, so I have nothing against any employee below top management. One of the company's policies is to treat it's customers as fodder. Once in a while it changes but it doesn't last. There was a time, for instance, when employees were told to be informative to the users - write blogs and such. It was when a new CEO came in but I forget which one. Soon afterwards, that was changed, and we went back to being mere fodder to be dumped on when useful, and to be largely not treated as customers.

There have been too many times when the users where dumped on by the company, so I am against the company's policies and attitudes towards its users/customers through the years, which has to mean being against the company.

Edited by Phil Deakins
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11 hours ago, Pamela Galli said:

The message we got before this iteration of the forum was that our forum was of no value to LL -- and neither were we faithful forum dwellers. The forum medium was a monumentally difficult and badly designed thing and no one but us cared. To those of you who nevertheless stuck it out and provided information and entertainment for lo these many years: thank you.

THIS, positively this!!! It was as if the official forum was a step child. We were mostly ignored, and because of that, some cave (oops, I meant forum) dwellers took that as a nod to behave any way they wanted to. 

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12 hours ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I could hardly be against the company that provides SL, that's counter productive.

The one thing I resent, and I really mean resent, about the way LL has been running SL is the overselling. It's better now than it used to be but there is still too large a gap between what they (implicitly and expilicitly) promise and what they actually deliver.

This goes all the way back to the early days of SL. The first Lindens believed in their own hype. They were convinced that the innocent little shootup game they had made for fun could develop into the Brave New World of the Future. This is very obvious to see in that other virtual world some of them launched recently. They just don't understand that you need to have your feet on solid ground to be able to build castles in the air.

Then for a while SL and LL went on in its own little bubble and they failed to notice that the world and internet around them evolved faster than them. The incident I had last week is a good example there. A server glitch lost me so much and vital data I just couldn't go on unless it was restored. Proper backup and data restoration routines is something you really take for granted on the internet these days, at least when we're talking about paid services. Linden Lab didn't have that. I had to push them really hard before at the last minute they managed to come up with an acceptable solution. (I tried not to push too hard though and I know at least one of the Lindens involved survived.)

It has grown better recently, no doubt about that. Among other things, they brought in somebody with experience from a major modern internet company and he must have noticed many of the issues right away. They still have a long way to go though. (Disclaimer: I'm talking about Second Life here, not Linden Lab's entire product range. I won't say if these problems apply to Sansar too since I'd rather not test the limits of that NDA.)

 

13 hours ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I'm not against the "company", I'm against it's top "employee".

Oh no! Ebbe is wonderful!!! And believe, me, it's not easy for a Norwegian to say that about a Swede - it's like a Canadian praising USA or an Irish admiring England.

He's not really here though. That is the one serious negative effect Sansar has had on Second Life: It seems the LL top manangement is so busy with this new project they don't have time enough to give SL the attention it needs.

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6 minutes ago, ChinRey said:

The one thing I resent, and I really mean resent, about the way LL has been running SL is the overselling. It's better now than it used to be but there is still too large a gap between what they (implicitly and expilicitly) promise and what they actually deliver.

This goes all the way back to the early days of SL. The first Lindens believed in their own hype. They were convinced that the innocent little shootup game they had made for fun could develop into the Brave New World of the Future. This is very obvious to see in that other virtual world some of them launched recently. They just don't understand that you need to have your feet on solid ground to be able to build castles in the air.

Then for a while SL and LL went on in its own little bubble and they failed to notice that the world and internet around them evolved faster than them. The incident I had last week is a good example there. A server glitch lost me so much and vital data I just couldn't go on unless it was restored. Proper backup and data restoration routines is something you really take for granted on the internet these days, at least when we're talking about paid services. Linden Lab didn't have that. I had to push them really hard before at the last minute they managed to come up with an acceptable solution. (I tried not to push too hard though and I know at least one of the Lindens involved survived.)

It has grown better recently, no doubt about that. Among other things, they brought in somebody with experience from a major modern internet company and he must have noticed many of the issues right away. They still have a long way to go though. (Disclaimer: I'm talking about Second Life here, not Linden Lab's entire product range. I won't say if these problems apply to Sansar too since I'd rather not test the limits of that NDA.)

 

Oh no! Ebbe is wonderful!!! And believe, me, it's not easy for a Norwegian to say that about a Swede - it's like a Canadian praising USA or an Irish admiring England.

He's not really here though. That is the one serious negative effect Sansar has had on Second Life: It seems the LL top manangement is so busy with this new project they don't have time enough to give SL the attention it needs.

What loss and solution exactly, Chin?

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14 minutes ago, Pamela Galli said:

What loss and solution exactly, Chin?

If you really want me to bore you with details. ;)

One of my tenants accidentally rezzed something that had an LI a bit too high for the sim to accept. All the failsafes failed and rather than return or refuse that particular item, the server cleared three fairly big parcels - about 1/5 of the sim - completely. To make matters worse, some key items of the build weren't returned to owner, they simply vanished without a trace. And to make matters even worse, about half the affected items were part of one of the Lutra City games (completely breaking the game of course) and the owner of those items weren't available to restore them.

This is mainland so LL couldn't do a regular rollback, especially not since it took 20 hours before they even responded to my support ticket. The four Lindens who were on the case at various times were really trying to help but the simply had no idea how to handle it. And they should because anybody can set off a prim bomb by accident. How many here can claim they always know the land impact of every single object they rez?

LL's standard answer is that they can't guarantee the safety of our data. It's in the ToS and we have to accept it or leave. How many customers have chosen the second option? And more to the point: how many customers can LL afford to loose that way? I had already started work on the goodbye letter to my tenants but only two hours before the final deadline I had given them, LL managed to come up with a way to restore the damaged parcels without affecting the rest of the sim. The deadline was well past midnight in my time zone and I was already exhausted so I had gone to bed. The next morning was truly a beautiful one. ^_^

In the end I lost one tenant, one night of sleep and about 30-40 hours I could have spent on more constructive work. On the plus side I gained a reputation among my tenants as a landowner who is really willing to stand up and fight to protect their homes.

Techincally the case is still open btw. I reopened it and posted and evaulation of the incident as a whole and how it was handled. They haven't responded yet but that's ok, no rush anymore. It'll probably take them a few days to read that last message. I had a lot on my mind and I shared it all with them. I do hope they learn from it though so that next time something similar happens to somebody, they're prepared.

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13 minutes ago, ChinRey said:

One of my tenants accidentally rezzed something that had an LI a bit too high for the sim to accept. All the failsafes failed and rather than return or refuse that particular item, the server cleared three fairly big parcels - about 1/5 of the sim - completely.

Do you mean that the server accepted the item and rezzed it, but cleared other stuff out to make way for it?

Whatever happened, it was an awful thing to have happened. If LL doesn't get to the bottom of why it happened, and alter the programming to ensure that it doesn't happen again, it'll be just another reason to be against the company. The same applies to the vanishing inventory. If everyone were using SL for free, then, imo, it wouldn't matter if they fix it or not. But everyone isn't using SL for free. Many people are paying customers, and letting things like that go without a fix, and telling the customers that it's been fixed - would just be another demonstration of the low regard in which the company holds its paying customers.

ETA: We've digressed a bit haven't we?

Edited by Phil Deakins
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19 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

Do you mean that the server accepted the item and rezzed it, but cleared other stuff out to make way for it?

I assume the offending item was returned too but I wasn't there when it happened so I don't know. The owner may have removed it himself afterwards.

 

19 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

If LL doesn't get to the bottom of why it happened, and alter the programming to ensure that it doesn't happen again, it'll be just another reason to be against the company.

Yes, I really hope they take heed. There are at least two safety measures built into the software that should have prevented this from happening at all, at least four others that should have helped reduce the damage and they all failed at the same time. That's not really an ideal situation.

 

19 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

If everyone were using SL for free, then, imo, it wouldn't matter if they fix it or not.

Maybe, maybe not. Flickr spends a lot of time and effort on adequate backup for their free accoutns and so do all those cloud storage services of course. But anybody who has land in SL is a paying customer anyway, either directly or indirectly.

 

22 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

ETA: We've digressed a bit haven't we?

I'm afraid you're right. Let's get back to talking about how wonderful this new forum is. :)

Edited by ChinRey
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2 hours ago, ChinRey said:

Let's get back to talking about how wonderful this new forum is

Yes let's :)

I gave a shout for Guy Linden in another thread yesterday - or maybe it was this one - as an example of why it isn't Lindens that I'm against. He has always been a really good chap. So now I am going to give a shout for SuperTom and the crew, and to those Lindens who pop into threads with helpful posts. They definitely improve this forum no end. They actually make me think that LL has started to care about the forum. That's a new phenomena, and warrants a pat on the back from me.

There's another thing that's happened in this version. I've been becoming accustomed to some people who I don't think I ever noticed before. You are one of them, another is Aislin, and Chic. I don't know why it could be because none of you are new to the forums. Perhaps you majored in other sub-forums before, whereas I pretty much stick to this one. In other words, I'm getting to know some more nice people in this incarnation :)

 

Edited by Phil Deakins
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11 hours ago, ChinRey said:

LL managed to come up with a way to restore the damaged parcels without affecting the rest of the sim

That's good to hear -- but I hope they write the solution down somewhere. :/

I have rezzed multi-thousand prims (yes single prims) before, which started clearing the rest of the content on the region. I have always thought it a shame that we would not get a message saying the prim is too large instead of returning other stuff.

Edited by Pamela Galli
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3 hours ago, ChinRey said:

The one thing I resent, and I really mean resent, about the way LL has been running SL is the overselling.

You can put the original "blame" for this on Philip Rosedale. But I need to put a finer point on "blame". Over the years I have accused LL of incompetence. I must be more careful when I make such statements, I'm also incompetent in a great many things. Rosedale's original vision was lovely. He sold it well, as he should, but ultimately that vision was flawed. At the time he imagined what SL could be, nobody was competent enough to understand the future of virtual worlds. Things didn't go as envisioned. And so I put "blame" in scare quotes.

I have certainly disliked many things LL has or hasn't done over the years, but I haven't risen to the level of resentment. A lot of choices were made in the design of SL that I'm sure looked good at the time but have now become a serious drag on LL. I've been in that position in my professional career, having to live with decisions that were made by people who didn't know what they were doing, at a time when nobody knew what they were doing. And, if I am to pursue my dreams, I'm invariably going to be one of those people, too.

I wasn't aware enough of Mark Kingdon to have developed resentment, but I think he had potential. Rod Humble seemed nice enough, but I saw no spark. Nothing he (or LL under him) did or didn't do incited resentment in me. I just saw SL succumbing to the inevitable future of Rosedale's original vision. The Great Recession robbed a lot of people of glorious futures.

 

17 hours ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I have to bite my tongue when discussing politics for the reverse reason. I'm not against the "company", I'm against it's top "employee". And that's also potentially counterproductive, the employee is trying to run the company. So I have to step back, take a deep breath, and carefully consider what to criticize in public. Privately, though the animals in my back yard don't understand English, they know something's up.

3 hours ago, ChinRey said:

Oh no! Ebbe is wonderful!!! And believe, me, it's not easy for a Norwegian to say that about a Swede - it's like a Canadian praising USA or an Irish admiring England.

He's not really here though. That is the one serious negative effect Sansar has had on Second Life: It seems the LL top manangement is so busy with this new project they don't have time enough to give SL the attention it needs.

I was being too clever. I wasn't speaking of Ebbe. I agree with you about him, I like what I've heard. LL needs something other than SL to grow and Sansar must be that thing. I've no idea if Sansar will succeed, but Ebbe's vision makes more business sense than Rosedale's original one. You'd expect that given nearly two decades of accumulated industry wisdom. I was actually referring to Donald Trump, the USA's #1 employee.

;-).

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1 hour ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I was actually referring to Donald Trump, the USA's #1 employee.

Oh. I kind'a mentioned him earlier in this thread and nobody responded to my straight line so I thought only us people who are interested in history still cared. ;)

But you were foolish enough to mention Trump and Humble in the same post...

I've noticed that there are quite a few people who are very strongly opposed to what Trump has done as a president, while many others are just as stronly in favor of it. Both sides are wrong because apart from making a lot of noise and offending a lot of people, he hasn't actually done much at all. The main reason is that a supreme leader isn't nearly as supreme as people tend to think, especially not a new supreme leader fighting against the inertia of the organization. I suppose I don't have to tell you what prevents Trump from doing much damage or good (depending on your "political" view).

Humble took over a company in disarray. Everybody had their own ideas where Second Life was heading and each department did their job the way they were used to do it, out of sync with each other and with the top management. It's hard to get much done under those conditions.

The results Altberg achieved during his first few months were actually astonishing. This may partly have been sheer luck, one of the heaviest anchors holding SL back had left only a month or two earlier, and I think part of it is that he is a good leader. But nobody is that good and I'm quit sure much of the explanation was that his predecessor had laid down some solid groundwork for him to build on. I think we should keep that in mind if we are to talk about Humble's achievements or lack of such.

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1 minute ago, ChinRey said:

Oh. I kind'a mentioned him earlier in this thread and nobody responded to my straight line so I thought only us people who are interested in history still cared. ;)

But you were foolish enough to mention Trump and Humble in the same post...

I've noticed that there are quite a few people who are very strongly opposed to what Trump has done as a president, while many others are just as stronly in favor of it. Both sides are wrong because apart from making a lot of noise and offending a lot of people, he hasn't actually done much at all. The main reason is that a supreme leader isn't nearly as supreme as people tend to think, especially not a new supreme leader fighting against the inertia of the organization. I suppose I don't have to tell you what prevents Trump from doing much damage or good (depending on your "political" view).

Humble took over a company in disarray. Everybody had their own ideas where Second Life was heading and each department did their job the way they were used to do it, out of sync with each other and with the top management. It's hard to get much done under those conditions.

The results Altberg achieved during his first few months were actually astonishing. This may partly have been sheer luck, one of the heaviest anchors holding SL back had left only a month or two earlier, and I think part of it is that he is a good leader. But nobody is that good and I'm quit sure much of the explanation was that his predecessor had laid down some solid groundwork for him to build on. I think we should keep that in mind if we are to talk about Humble's achievements or lack of such.

It's difficult to know what's going on inside organizations like LL or a government, even if you work inside them, even if you run them. Yet, to some extent, perception is reality, so the public face of a leader important, even if s/he's not actually doing anything. The US Founding Fathers created the singular position of President to act as both lightning rod and inspiration, while simultaneously placing checks and balances on his/her power. And a lot of Americans don't understand that those public employees who are required to take an oath swear their allegiance to the Constitution, not to their bosses. And the LL mission statement is probably argued over about as much as the Constitution.

You're probably right about Humble laying groundwork for Ebbe. Whether we'll look back in 10 years and like what was built on that foundation is unknown. I'm not competent to say, but I wish them (and us) well.

Excuse me while I go looking for your reference to Our Dear Leader.

;-).

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9 hours ago, Phil Deakins said:

There's another thing that's happened in this version. I've been becoming accustomed to some people who I don't think I ever noticed before. You are one of them, another is Aislin, and Chic.

Phil, you and I banded together against a rather grumpy old forumite  many moons ago. I'll only say that he certainly gave us a lot of "pep" lol! (although it was a different and highly caustic incarnation). I posted here and there after that, but usually quietly, and inconsistantly because of some of the nasty responses I would get from simple posts. ETA I was even accused of being a know it all in a rather nasty post just before they closed the last forum, that blew my mind. Not sure where they got that from!

Edited by Aislin Ceawlin
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