Date: 10/25/19 8:58 am From: JILL PUNCHES <punches1...> Subject: [obol] Re: People enjoy birding and contribute in different ways
I agree with Caleb and Philip (and now see Courtney’s response) and thought this morning’s earlier post might be a good time to turn off OBOL.
From my perspective, the comment mentioned expressed the joy of finding a rare bird and a love of birding. I, too, share that joy and hope to encourage others. As someone new to the birding community, I’ve noticed that love of language and birding go hand in hand. I appreciated Courtney’s way of expressing finding that bird.
I have felt harmed by the mean comments on OBOL, even when they’re not directed at me. When Oscar originally posted, I happened to be camping by myself in pouring rain, realizing the water table was about to beat the waterproofing of my tent and already felt quite vulnerable.
I would like to note that scrolling through EBird guidance, I missed any mention of silly/immature comments.
I hope we can all work together to share our common love of birds, while encouraging others to learn and being tolerant of how we express ourselves.
Have a good day!
Sent from my iPhone
On Oct 25, 2019, at 8:18 AM, Philip Kline <pgeorgekline...> wrote:
Wonderfully said Caleb and I can say the recent comments have rubbed a number of us the wrong way, so please continue and don't be discouraged by the grumpiest among us. Honestly, people wonder why obol turns so many people off. There are some great birders in our State that choose not to participate on obol for precisely this reason.
I respect everyone on this forum and enjoy meeting them and birding with them in the field. That's why I've been on OBOL for 4 years now, and have mostly loved getting to post because of the friendship and community and interesting perspectives I've encountered.
Not everyone has this experience on OBOL. People who seem different that the average birder, for example, don't tend to fare as well. Maybe they are a 'silly' person who likes reporting Mandarin Ducks at the park, maybe they're just new and have some new ideas that not all of you are used to, maybe they like using eBird different than the Colloquial Birder Authoritied have decided one should.
We have seen ten or more people basically harassed on OBOL since just the beginning of the summer for having different ideas than the norm, by many different people in our community. I myself didn't agree with most of them, but was sad to see it, because this is what keeps young people, women, and cultural diversity out of birding. All of us do what has always been done, or the community let's us know we're wrong. Apparently part of that status quo is going off at anyone we disagree with and having fun defaming them on a public forum.
eBird has, in past disputes, supported the posting of whatever comments we use to document our birding experience. Many people love them, and choose the have fun with the ways we are different and enjoy how we 'humanize eBird'. If you don't feel that way, consider this: no one asked or told you to read our comments. There are plenty of other eBird lists to look at. I have fun with comments like these, and always have, even before the lists were shared with me. In 300 years, I think there will still be people who find these in the database and have a good time reading them. They will know what it was actually like when we birded, not just what we saw.
However, if I keep getting negative, unnecessary comments, I'll be inclined to do as many others have done: disable my posts from the rare bird alerts and stop posting on OBOL. Then nobody will know when I see a rare bird, and that will be the community's choice. Our community excludes many good observers because of the abrasive, angry comments we make to each other.
I say this all with love and hope for our Oregon birding community. If you have something to say, please consider that not everyone has the same perspective or understanding of the world as you, and at least try to have a discussion instead of ridiculing or throwing insults.
I look forward to seeing you all again in the field, where you are generally all kind, thoughtful people who I respect very much.
Hope you all enjoy this beautiful Autumn morning full of color, love, and avian wonder waiting to be discovered away from our keyboards.
Good birding and warmest wishes to all,