CityCyclingEdinburgh Forum » Infrastructure

citycyclingsheffield.info?

(50 posts)
  • Started 6 months ago by lionfish
  • Latest reply from rider73

  1. lionfish
    Member

    Hi - as chdot suggested a year ago...

    Background: lyndsey(minimoth) and I(Mike/lionfish) moved from Edinburgh (via Uganda) to Sheffield, where we've been for two-three years.

    There is a cycle sheffield group - but their meetings are maybe a bit heated the last couple of times I went. I think they do have a (closed?) forum somewhere. Anyway: I was wondering whether setting up a citycyclingsheffield.info forum like this one might be a good idea? In the hope that the positive effects of this forum will happen in Sheffield too! Just wondering what your thoughts are? How much time does it take to set up and run? How come this one is so active and friendly? Any other advice? :)

    It looks like a very busy job, chdot, keeping this forum active and growing it?

    Posted 6 months ago #
  2. I were right about that saddle
    Member

    How come this one is so active and friendly?

    That, @lionfish, is a very good question. I think there are three key components;

    1) Light-touch curation by Our Leader.
    2) Mix of on-line and real-world activity.
    3) Retro feel to the on-line presence.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  3. chdot
    Admin

    “It looks like a very busy job, chdot, keeping this forum active and growing it?”

    Essentially no (now).

    Set up takes as long as you want in the sense that some thought went it the categories and looking at software.

    BBPress is sadly ‘obsolete’.

    Now I would probably use the forum plug-in for WordPress. There still seems to be no ‘really good’ and easy to use forum software that looks half decent (but I’ve stopped looking).

    Yes, in the early days, I put a lot of time into posting new threads and relying on a small number of people to respond and/or do the same.

    There was a contact list of my own (after doing cycle stuff in Ed for many years) PLUS Anth’s email list from his .citycycling on-line magazine.

    Best advice -

    Show this site to people you know (and others you know of) and say ‘WE could do something like this’.

    Stick to two rules!

    ALSO (as I have said before) it was assumed that CCEers (it wasn’t a thing then) would be more likely to be ‘campaigning types’ (undefined).

    It soon became clear it was just ‘people’ with a wide range of reasons for thinking about bikes (including ‘I would like to cycle in Edinburgh’...)

    High proportion were/are car owners who prefer to commute by bike.

    Also also, maybe, consider some localised version of http://cyclefridays.wordpress.com

    As to ‘heated meetings’ and local politics avoid being seen as the mouthpiece of any group or faction OR oppositional!

    But clearly that depends on who could be attracted to any forum - and whether they stuck to the rules...

    Enjoy.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  4. Frenchy
    Member

    Stick to two rules!

    Is this Rule 8?

    Posted 6 months ago #
  5. chdot
    Admin

    1) Light-touch curation by Our Leader.

    Can’t deny that helps, but a lot is down to people on here (some have gone away). Genuinely having the two rules is a factor.

    2) Mix of on-line and real-world activity.

    Was fascinating how quickly people wanted to meet/do stuff - rides and ‘activities’ (inc. relocating Festival adverts on MMW). Next was the number of Audax converts. PoP is to a fair extent a spin-off - NOT initiated by CCE.

    3) Retro feel to the on-line presence.

    Really?? Is that like ‘nostalgic’?

    Posted 6 months ago #
  6. chdot
    Admin

    I’m sure things had reached rule9 (on another thread).

    Posted 6 months ago #
  7. lionfish
    Member

    Thanks both for the advice.

    Good points @saddle: I think point (3) is very interesting - and in general it's very easy (I think) to get started on this forum. I also liked the meet ups at PY (does CCE still do that? have you been back to the canal boat cafe?)

    @chdot - I love the 'friday start' page, really inspiring!

    Also you're right about getting my friends involved as the first step - I've not really talked about this - as I wanted to make sure I approached this in the 'right way'. I'll ping it out to my cycling (and non- or interested-in-cycling friends) and see what response I get!

    I'll look at the wordpress option. Have you had any trouble with hacking/ddos attacks?

    You're also right to call me out on being oppositional - I didn't mean to sound like that - so I need to learn to be a bit more careful myself :). I guess it's a bit like how SPOKES/CCE/PoP can all coexist?

    Posted 6 months ago #
  8. fimm
    Member

    There's a CiryCycling Glasgow forum (spin-off from this one I think?) I think Darkerside may be/have been involved in that. Maybe worth posting this question on there too?

    chdot, have you ever banned anyone? ;-)

    Posted 6 months ago #
  9. lionfish
    Member

    good idea,
    thanks fimm!

    Posted 6 months ago #
  10. chdot
    Admin

    “You're also right to call me out on being oppositional”

    I wasn’t actually meaning you, just being aware about the potential potential for users to use CCS as ‘their’ platform and/or just becoming a forum for unresolved things (which could be a good thing).

    Posted 6 months ago #
  11. chdot
    Admin

    “I guess it's a bit like how SPOKES/CCE/PoP can all coexist?”

    Don’t think coexist is appropriate word.

    PoP is an entity with symbiotic relationships with the other two.

    CCE was partly started because the Spokes forum wasn’t really active and definitely peripheral to the main Spokes’ interests.

    In other cities, with other personalities, things may have become (or just seen as) oppositional.

    Actually one motivation was the fact that the less than wonderful CyclingScotland forum had finally had the plug pulled.

    Starting a Scotland-wide forum would have been a bad idea!

    Posted 6 months ago #
  12. neddie
    Member

    I think CCE is also kept active and lively because Our Leader periodically rejuvenates topics, keeps topics alive when needed and posts relevant mainstream-news items.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  13. lionfish
    Member

    What nedd1e says! I think chdot maybe underplays how important this is :) it's a bit what's put me off starting one here - as I doubt I'll be able to be dedicated enough :) I think I'll give it a go though!

    Posted 6 months ago #
  14. chdot
    Admin

    "periodically rejuvenates topics, keeps topics alive when needed and posts relevant mainstream-news items."

    The last bit is more true/relevant than the others, but I'm not the only one who does it.

    It helps if you spend too much time on Twitter...

    Posted 6 months ago #
  15. chdot
    Admin

    "have you ever banned anyone?"

    Only one (you know, the one who couldn't understand why 'we' weren't more concerned about making CEC put cyclelanes everywhere, overnight...) waited until he used an unforum word.

    A couple of people have been suspended for a short time (possibly to protect themselves).

    There was someone whose 'banter' drifted to point where some CCEers complained. They didn't agree there was a problem so stopped posting.

    There are people who have found CCE too cliquey (there have been threads).

    Can't please everyone all the time.

    There have been rows - notably over h*lmets (which is why there is THE helmet thread).

    Conversely there have been epic threads - notably about IndyRef - where there were serious debates between people of different views and no fallouts. Indeed quite a few people thought the info/debate was more informative than in any other place!

    CCE works on many levels, for many reasons - but primarily because of the people who contribute.

    Must be possibly to do similar elsewhere.

    Ed pop 500k

    Sheff pop 575k

    The metropolitan population of Sheffield is 1,569,000.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheffield

    Plenty of commuters then...

    Posted 6 months ago #
  16. fimm
    Member

    Oh, him...

    I have to admit to keeping out of the IndyRef and Referendum threads. And indeed mostly the one about headwear as well (someone will now demonstrate that I've posted in that one...)

    Posted 6 months ago #
  17. wingpig
    Member

    Wonder if there's anything in the Spokes 40 exhibition about His request to them to 'introduce' royalty payments to Him.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  18. Frenchy
    Member

  19. Ed1
    Member

    I see Glasgow city cycling does not have much activity. I guess the most important thing for a web forum is for there to be daily users. If Sheffield cycling starts it may be best to write posts for 10 “fake users” chatting daily until a real user joins. If someone looks at a forum an no recent activity would guess unlikely to join or come back. In theory it may be that CCE only has 2 members one of which has many different names.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  20. lionfish
    Member

    @fimm yeah - same (again likely to be disproved) - but I think it's nice that there's enough space on here for people to talk about the different things that interest them.

    I was worried that now twitter's so big - there's no place for a forum like this - but seems like it's still in demand.

    @Ed1 - yeah - I think maybe making fake users is a bit too much - but pay my friends in pints to use it until it grows might be the way to go. I'll look into building it in the next few weeks.

    @Ed2 - I hopefully managed to disprove that by meeting many of the users at the pub + PY. But maybe they were all just actors, paid by the puppetmaster...

    Posted 6 months ago #
  21. ih
    Member

    It would be interesting to hear how forumites first came to hear about CCE, and it might help lionfish in Sheffield.

    I first came across it when Googling the George St bike track and tent experiment. I was riveted by the Great Simon Parker War, and now I can't put it down.

    There are many good things about CCE, but its civility and slightly retro feel are certainly up there for me.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  22. HankChief
    Member


    It would be interesting to hear how forumites first came to hear about CCE

    It was Laidback who told me about CCE. I was interested in buying a non-standard bike and I think he wanted me to see there were other non-standard cyclists out there so I wouldn't be worried about being a trendsetter. How times have changed...

    The things I like about CCE are

    - 30 posts per page (there are other fora with only 20 and it really annoys me)

    - resurrected threads allow you to catch up on the whole story (Twitter is very annoying for not know where things start)

    I dislike that photos are very hard to add from a phone with a flikr account.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  23. I were right about that saddle
    Member

    I found CCE through Google in one of those 'nothing has changed in the South Edinburgh cycling experience for twenty years surely somebody must be doing something behind the scenes' moments. We've all had those, yes?

    In some ways the Simon Parker Affair was maybe the making of the place? Disruption firmly and politely dealt with.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  24. chdot
    Admin

    "In some ways the Simon Parker Affair was maybe the making of the place?"

    Hope not!

    Though it might have encouraged an extra level of 'resilience against an invader', but I hope that was because of reaching the conclusion that he was misguided and not just that he was trying to upset a cosy concencus!

    Posted 6 months ago #
  25. SRD
    Moderator

    I found CCE after chdot and the late much lamented Wilmington Cow got themselves - and the forum - into the Evening News. Good use of oldskool media to promote their brand.

    ADMIN EDIT

    Just to make it clear -

    He’s left, not deceased!

    Posted 6 months ago #
  26. Arellcat
    Moderator

    Nice to see your name again, lionfish!

    This all has a bit of the 'Rock Family Trees' about it. I knew of Wilmington's Cow in his original nom de plume from the Raging Bike website, and later from the cross-pollination of ACF, yACF, the Cycling Scotland forum, and the League of Gentlemen Cyclists and Intrepid Sorority (which was a tangent from the C+ forum). I was an early fan of .citycycling magazine*, and all that followed.

    Quite separately I often crossed paths (workwise or leisurewise) with TryCycling in Edinburgh, and chdot, Maggie Wynn, Laid Back and donny murdo who were behind that endeavour.

    I think it was actually Jacquie Phelan, on one of her much missed sojourns to 'Edenburrow', who mentioned to me the new idea for an Edinburgh cycling forum, and its was probably Laid Back who confirmed the idea to me, which is why I was one of the early members. But also at that time, Kim was writing a blog about bikes and stuff** and it's possible that I heard about proto-CCE there too.

    * I was rather hoping it was still online somewhere but seems not.
    ** All-purpose term in lieu of remembering the precise content.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  27. chdot
    Admin

    “still online somewhere but seems not”

    Not strictly true (but mostly) -

    http://web.archive.org

    Posted 6 months ago #
  28. lionfish
    Member

    Thanks everyone for all the advice! This is really useful.

    OK step 1: looking at CCglasgow. It seems better/more shiny - I like that it doesn't bother showing the list of forums - which I assume everyone here ignores on CCE? On the other hand the list of Latest discussions is quite clear on CCE (Topic->add new, Posts, Last Poster, Latest Post), while the CCG has (Votes, Posts, Views) bit less intuitive. Guess that can be fixed.
    I think it's the retro 'used' look of the CCE that is part of its appeal though!

    I'll look into hosting. At the moment I use dogsbody hosting for my own page as it's a friend of a family member's and they're really responsive and helpful (but it is expensive...).

    I don't know if I want it to look as shiny as CCG, but it would be good if it works well on a mobile etc.

    Thanks again people!

    Posted 6 months ago #
  29. neddie
    Member

    the retro 'used' look of the CCE that is part of its appeal though

    I'm not sure a retro look per-se is required. What people like is the simplicity.

    Google have spent a lot of effort purposefully designing their home page to be as simple as possible - this is why people use it by preference.

    I dare say you could create a modern forum on a modern platform and still keep it beautifully simple. Good luck.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  30. I were right about that saddle
    Member

    It may just be me but I find our western counterpart visually very unappealing. Also, although they're not much used, the mere presence of up/down vote buttons is unsettling.

    Posted 6 months ago #

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