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Old 02-25-20, 02:20 PM
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canklecat
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Part of the issue is deciding what we want from a photography discussion forum.

Most are oriented toward gear obsession rather than photography. Some folks do put that pricey new gear to exceptional use. Most don't.

The internet has had plenty of time to demonstrate that most folks aren't seriously interested in what it takes to develop as a photographer. Almost any other creative craft insists upon excellence (even when it isn't always rewarded commensurately with effort) and pushes participants toward refining their craft: acting, music, painting, sculpture, etc. All eventually involve inescapable criticism, sometimes constructive, but not always.

But photography thrives on kudos, gold stars, gimmicks and mutual backrubs.

Many photography sites have attempted to incorporate constructive critiques of user submitted content, and almost all have failed. That includes photo.net where I used to hang out as a mod.

I also moderate a Facebook page for street and documentary photography, only because a friend had the notion that the internet needed yet another forum for street and documentary photography. It doesn't. My friend has been too busy actually making a living as a professional photographer so the FB page is pretty much up to me. I've done absolutely nothing to develop the community or encourage participation, hoping it would die of neglect.

Inexplicably, we keep getting new members. Not one of them has ever heeded my introductory statement for the group, which encourages participants to avoid the trap of daily begging for affirmation of one photo at a time, and instead work toward a theme or project and submit samples for a critique of a body of work in progress.

Most folks on every Facebook photography group fall into the same trap of wanting daily doses of affirmation. Not critiques. And that pressure tends toward a certain kind of safe, accessible, familiar sameness. Occasionally someone will try to differentiate their monochrome photo from the masses by specifying which film and developer they used.

But, hey, check out my new full frame mirrorless etc etc etc...
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