Newbie Section Poll

The place for new forum requests, suggestions, bug reports and other issues relating to AST.

Newbies (to AST and/or the hobby): Would you want to participate in a hidden newbie section?

Yes! That would definitely make me want to join in!
7
88%
No! I just want to read the content and be left alone!
1
13%
 
Total votes: 8

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Xen
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Newbie Section Poll

Postby Xen » Sun Mar 02, 2014 12:32 am

I've been thinking about adding a section for newbies only and need your input.

The idea would be to create a "safe zone" for members that are new to the hobby (or have basic skills) and new to forum participation. A place they could post and interact with other members within the group, without fear of being "watched" or "judged" by the community. The section could act as a stepping stone, that allows each member to dip their toe in the water, before interacting with the rest of the community.

Social phobias and forms of anxiety were mentioned as a possible cause for folks not talking part. Ever since I read that, it's made me think of what I can do to help. From my research, I've found out it's very common on the Internet. Particularly on forums and other groups. You wouldn't think so, in the age of social media, but it's something to be taken very seriously. AST prides itself on having a friendly and helpful community. However, I'm all for thinking outside the box to make AST even more inviting.

It might be a dismal failure. All the same, I won't know unless I try. I'd welcome your thoughts, one and all. :)

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Tesral
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Re: Newbie Section Poll

Postby Tesral » Sun Mar 02, 2014 8:38 am

Xen we don't bite (much) and I've seen that the community generally either supports new members and modelers or is at least keeping their peace if they consider that model dreck.

I don't think segregation is a good idea. How then do we encourage them if we can't participate together?

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Re: Newbie Section Poll

Postby curt » Sun Mar 02, 2014 3:48 pm

This is a good question! I have been on forums for years and the thing I hate the most is when you post a question and get flamed imeadiatly by more advanced hobbiests. A question of whats the best way to do x,y,z? An the responce is" you idiot everyone knows you do this."

It is very dishearting. I am not an advanced modeler by any means, nor am i nessasearly a beginer either. However it is great to look up and aspire to be a feyman shipyards, or one of the other execlent builders here. An most on this forum seem to be very willing to help. But as newbies come on they feel intimadated by such greatness. A place they could call there own and ask questions without fear moderated by some one one the same or a little higher leval then they, IMHO would be a good thing. Then a second step mabye would be a mentoring section. Where newbies could be paired with advanced modelers to further their skill sets.

Tesral, i dont feel it is segragation. It is a place that some one new, or with a limmited skill set can ask a question, or post an experiance; to help others on the same level without feeling like an imeadiate judgement will be passed on them by a more advanced builder.

Just my 2 cents.

Curt

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Del
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Re: Newbie Section Poll

Postby Del » Sun Mar 02, 2014 5:28 pm

The only problem I see with a newbie section, is that if the newbies are asking questions, who will be answering? I was a newbie once, and I felt intimidated. Heck, I still feel intimidated at some other forums because the builds are just excellent. I may be a kit maker now, but my builds are still improving with each kit I release. I am in no way an expert on anything, and still learn something new each month from the folks here at AST, be it a new technique, greeblie item, or color mixture.

I don't believe that a newbie-only section would be helpful. It may allow them to feel less intimidated, but the folks with the experience won't be able to help them with difficulties they might be having. Another issue is when do you kick them out of the nest? When are they no longer a newbie and therefore be restricted from using that section? Could make some folks angry when they are forced out.

EDIT: Oops! :oops: I just realized that you were asking the newbies for their input, and not the rest of us. Oh well, you have my 2 pence anyway. ;)
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Cubey Terra
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Re: Newbie Section Poll

Postby Cubey Terra » Sun Mar 02, 2014 8:25 pm

I've never felt a need to have newbie-only conversation here. Since I joined, everyone has been welcoming, supportive, and very willing to provide tips and tricks and other help — even if my questions are really low-level or even just dumb. :) It's a sign of a healthy online community that newbies are made to feel welcome. I think setting up a hidden section might run contrary to that.

By the way, I think you need a third option. "No, a hidden section isn't necessary to get me involved!"

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Xen
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Re: Newbie Section Poll

Postby Xen » Sun Mar 02, 2014 10:21 pm

Actually, when it came to feedback in the thread, it was open to "one and all" (as stated). However, I can see why the regulars might have been confused, since the poll question was aimed at newbies/new members/window shoppers.

This is something that hasn't been tried before. Which is why I wanted to see what the community thought. I just checked my PM and e-mail. I have 5 PM's and 8 e-mails from newbies asking about this. They would rather contact me directly, than post here. 5 Yes votes and 1 No vote so far. They care enough to vote, but still wish to remain anonymous? I think there is definitely something worth exploring here.

I agree that segregation is risky, as it could alienate the main group. However, I don't think the regulars would mind, provided they knew the reasons behind it (and weren't missing out on something special). It would treated as a social experiment, that could easily be changed back if it didn't work. The method behind the madness, is to get that large group of people used to actively participating, in what -they- deem a "safe" environment. Shielded from any possibility of "retaliation". I know no one at AST thinks that way and you're all great with the new members. The fears and more serious phobias can wreck havoc though. Something like this, might provide folks with a much needed stepping stone. If we're lucky, a lot of new members will end up using both sections.

I want to start from ground zero, making sure the brand spanking new modelers and basic skill level "newbies" have everything they need. What all the terms mean, what tools are needed, where to find them etc. All located in one place. If Joe public buys their very first kit and wants a place to learn, they can come here and use that stepping stone.

No one would be kicked out. This idea is still a work in progress. I'd like to think folks who join, enhance their knowledge/skills and overcome their fears, would return the favor, by helping the next wave of newbies. I quite like the sound of that. Good karma.

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Re: Newbie Section Poll

Postby jkb-1 » Mon Mar 03, 2014 2:08 pm

Xen wrote:I have 5 PM's and 8 e-mails from newbies asking about this. They would rather contact me directly, than post here. 5 Yes votes and 1 No vote so far. They care enough to vote, but still wish to remain anonymous? I think there is definitely something worth exploring here.


Yeah, that says it. What Lincoln would call far above my poor power to add or detract. Sounds like it would be worthwhile to open a section even if it never lead anyone to the rest of the forum.


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