Friday, 17 August 2012

Canalworld and I Finally Part Company

I've finally had enough of CWDF a.k.a the Canalworld forum here on the internet and have decided to stop posting there.

It's a good forum if you have a boating question, as it has a hardcore of experienced, but overbearing boaters who have opinions on everything and will put you straight, before arguing amongst themselves to prove their superiority to each other, until the post gets locked or turns to dust.

All large forums have this to some extent, but their mob rule is getting out of hand.

Several wise boaters have told me recently that they use CWDF to gain answers to their problems, but then once the information is gained, they stop viewing the post and let the regulars turn their original post into chaos with their bickering and bitching.

I've been a member for 7.5 years and have around 2600 posts to my name, but it's been getting worse in the last few years, with some posts just resorting to rudeness and open insults. The moderation is very laid back and a minority have effectively seized control.

Half the time, people can't even be bothered to read what you've written and just hijack the thread to talk about what they want to talk about.

I stopped posting answers on my speciality, electrical matters, some years ago because I was finding that I would answer the original poster with my professional opinion and then spend the next 5 posts defending my answer to others looking to pick holes in my response. I found myself writing essays to cover all the angles for even the simplest questions. Life is just too short for that sort of nonsense.

The sad thing is that I have met quite a few boaters who admit they like reading the forum for its wealth of information but do not post or even reply to the posts of others for fear of being trampled by the hardcore.

That is a real shame and of course is a form of censorship all in itself. It's all very well for the hardcore to say "grow a thick skin" and "if you can't take the knocks don't play", but why should you have to ?

Not everybody who likes canals wants to spend their evenings arguing and point scoring..

The end result is that the meek get meeker and the know-all's become the only posters.

There is a distinct lack of respect for varying peoples opinions which is just ignorance.

It seems to me that forums like this have a lot of people on their board who think that an evening's entertainment ideally comprises of large amounts of alcohol and winding people up as much as possible.


  1. totally agree with you, posted a comment about CCers on the forum and because it was my first time I was treated as an idiot. The feeling was if your not in their click forget it, although I,ve been a CCer [and I do CC all year] going on 11 years my knowledge compared to some of the clicks is a lot more than what is on the back of a postage stamp.I have myself now un subscribed as well..Jak

  2. What I think many fail to understand is that proper discussion and debating is rational argument without sarcasm, rudeness or shouting people down by repeatedly saying the same thing. It comes down to how you want to cover a point. My preference is for different people to voice their opinion and make their point and then let others have their say, so people reading the topic can make up their own mind. Unfortunately, there are too many who just want to keep posting the same message until they beat the other into submission. As I said, its good for technical information (how to fix things cheaply, etc) and sitting with a bag of popcorn watching the regulars use each other as a verbal punchbag, if that's your thing. It's not for me to condemn if that's what people want and it seems that those you see posting there, do want that kind of thing. It's just not for me, you by the sounds of it and probably others who just vote with their mouses and can't be bothered to even discuss it further.

  3. Hi mark
    Hope you're keeping well. Sad though it is, most forums end up the same way. Another non boating forum I am a member of got so cliquey that I gave up posting and used to PM users instead!

    Anyway you can't hide from all of us, I still have your email address somewhere!

  4. Not sure if I totally agree about all forums being the same. I belong to a few, some non-boaty and I don't think any are as bad as CWDF has become. It largely depends on the level of moderation. If people can get away with abusing others, then a minority will.

  5. I'm new to CWDF & so far, I haven't experienced any problems like this & its very sad that you have to such a degree that you feel obliged to call it a day. I know where you're coming from as I experienced the same clique attitude with Cutweb. Even when I knew 100% that I was right, I still got roundly derided by the few morons who's opinion differed from my facts. Their opinion was the only one that counted as far as they were concerned, so, like you, I decided that I had more important things to take up my time with than trying to educate the uneducateable (not sure if thats a proper word, but you know wht I mean!). I also participate in other forums & I do have to say that by far the worst for abuse are the football fan based forums, they can get downright disgusting in their personal abuse. I'm afraid that we have very little choice. We either put up/ignore it, complain to the moderators with all the grief that can bring if the moderator is mates with the protagonists, or we leave. Its a shame that really useful & good forums end up blighted in this way. All the best.

  6. CWDF is no better or worse than most forums on the web, be they canal based or otherwise. They mirror life, and I compare them to what happens in the pub; there are different factions with different ways of dealing with things, and mostly the two don't mix, but there is no need to throw your toys out of the pram just because not everyone agrees with your views, you just ignore them.

    1. I don't think I am throwing my toys out of my pram.
      I've made a personal decision not to post any longer and I've posted the decision and my reasons for those decisions on my personal blog, nowhere else. It really only affects me and as people keep telling me on CWDF, everyone is entitled to an opinion. It's a shame that my opinion leaves me open to abuse and I have to reject abusive comments from other CWDF members who don't respect my right to free speech.

  7. I think you've hit the nail squarely on the head.


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