[Sticky] March Survey Results
I'd like to thank those that have taken the time to respond to the brief survey that Raaj sent out last month. This Topic summarizes the results. Where I could, I've tried to distill the responses to there essence, but please feel to reach out if you think the summary missed an important point. Also, I've kept the individual responses mostly anonymous, just in case anyone was concerned.
- Lots of positive feedback. (Phewww! -LB)
- But, some important recommendations
- Set realistic guidelines for participation.
- Please see comments under "Expectations" in Question 2, below. I'd appreciate additional perspective on this one. -LB
- Make it easier to be aware of, and to track, postings.
- Good point, Ulana. I'll address awareness in a separate Topic. Tracking may be better related to the next point.
- And, related, provide an image-based index to our postings
- Great idea, Kevin. This will take some research, and possibly some cash. Ideas welcome, and I'll be looking around for an approach. -LB
- Keep number of members to a manageable level
- I'd extend this to say the "number of active members". I don't know the right number, and certainly member will fade in and out of participation as their lives dictate. Char suggested "double the number", and I'd be comfortable adding another dozen to take us to a couple of dozen, or so. Any other thoughts on this? -LB
- Set realistic guidelines for participation.
5 of 12 members (Raaj and I excluded) responded. 42%
Question 1: Are you getting what you like from the community?
4/5 Strong yes
1/5 Moderate yes
- "Appreciate the no-BS feedback"
- "Thoughtful comments"
- "Honest criticism"
- "Could stand even more brutal criticism"
- From Lucia's research on Cafe Guerbois (the actual name of 19th century artists community), the Guerbois Cafe concept was to debate what makes a good photograph - "we have just started to scratch the surface".
- "Useful criticism is damn difficult and I appreciate everyone’s efforts in that direction. The forum is requiring me to up my game."
- Keeps me motivated
- "Things like discussions re. gear and shooting expeditions. These are all good additions."
- "I like the community. The idea of fellow photographers that share a passion for excellence in their work is very appealing. In contrast to open forums where there are commentaries (often without merit), this forum provides a place for skilled photographers to learn from each other and obtain various points of view on their work. It works for me. I was done with public forums."
- "I like the intimacy of the group ... we are all skilled photographers with diverse photographic interests makes it a good platform to learn and evolve our craft"
- "As a 99% color photographer I appreciate the many excellent B/W images (as well as the ones that do not work for me as B/W)"
Question 2: Does the Forum work for you? Why? Why not? What can be improved?
- Life gets in the way for some respondents who rue their inability to be as active as they would like.
- "I do find it hard to keep track of the discussions and sometimes miss postings. My workflow is to go to the bottom of the screen and check out recent topics and recent replies. If there has alot of activity I sometimes miss topics. Perhaps there is better way of keeping track of discussions than my process."
- Good point. I've made a (hopefully acceptable) change to help with this - which I'll address in a separate Topic. -LB
- "I like that participants are posting their best work as well as interesting works-in-progress (emphasis added -LB)."
- "I like not having to worry that a cat picture might pop up on my screen." 😎🐱🐱🐱😎
- The Monthly Challenge is important to me as I need nudges, both to show my work as well as to create new images outside of my usual photography habits or patterns."
- "I suggest an informal but serious “rule” that each participate post at least one new image a month as well as comment on more than half the images posted."
- "Perhaps we could be clearer about what is expected from each person to make this work. The idea that we each should provide feedback to everyone who posts a picture doesn’t seem realistic."
Question 3: Should we broaden the community?
- "I prefer a smaller group to encourage and support each other, to be committed to honest feedback, though I am open to a bigger group."
- "Not sure."
- "I think that it’s important to have a close knit group. Once a group gets too large, it becomes impersonal and that (in my opinion) leads to the bashing type mentality. The “personal” aspects are removed. A sense of community is what makes this special. If it was to grow, I would suggest that it be community focused. Create more communities but don’t create huge ones."
- "I have one or two photographers in mind but I agree that we do not want too large a group."
- "Perhaps double the number of participants ... Any nominee should, obviously, be a serious photographer as well as having photographic interests off a tangent from what other group members share (emphasis added - LB)."
Question 4: Other thoughts, concerns, and ideas?
- See "Expectations" comments under question 2.
- "Since this is a photography forum, it would be great to have a page that indexes everything by image in addition to the existing forum posts. One place to simply browse a grid of thumbnails that is an aggregation of everyone’s combined postings; a sort of flickr view. This really represents the forum community works. Clicking on an image would then take me to the relevant forum discussion. I think this would be a great feature."
- "Not at the moment, other than keep participating!"