A Request, No Trash Talk Please!
by: David Coulson 3/15/2011
Something happened today and it really made me angry. A member decided to bash Fish Explorer and its members on Fish Explorer. We see and receive criticism for our actions, and that is alright. I recognize that we're not perfect, heck we'll never be able to please everyone. Further I recognize that not every member, me included, is perfect. I'd go so far to say none of us are perfect. In fact, I don't even know what perfection should be.
What I do know is Fish Explorer is meant to be a community of fishers helping each other learn to be better fishers, not only gain fishing skills, but hopefully come to understand and respect the resources we all use. The staff of FishExplorer.com has always and will continue to promote conservation and wise use of our resources. We believe the future depends on it and we further that knowledge is key to the protection of those resources.
We have been blamed for ruining fisheries. That is pure hogwash in my opinion and I have so argued. I recognize that people using/viewing the site may gain knowledge to catch more fish, which they can get that from magazines, other sites, shows, friends, books, also. I know I do. And I recognize that some will use this knowledge to exploit a fishery beyond what maybe they should. Yeck, I see folks promoting catch and release of bass, then willingly promote heavy harvest of sunfish, crappie, perch, and catfish, then turn around and complain about fisheries being trashed. Yep, all this happens and likely will continue.
Further, not everyone who uses this site is a member. I encounter a large number of folks who look in, but don't join. They find what they need from the forum and other materials viewable without logging on. While I encourage them to join, it is their choice.
Here is the bottom line. We're not perfect. Never will be. So we encourage input from the membership on how we can improve. Over the years, we have woven many of those suggestions into the site. While no one loves critism, we accept it, take it into consideration, and encourage it, although we prefer it come to us directly and not through public airing on the forum.
But what I won't tolerate is using our forums and comment sections to bash/trash members, others, and/or the site. Take it elsewhere. No, we're not perfect. Yes, we can improve and want to hear from you on how we can. But, DO NOT COME INTO MY HOUSE AND TRASH TALK ABOUT MY HOUSE. Do so and I'll toss you out.
Blog content © David Coulson
KAK, CO 3/15/2011 11:00:00 AM
I too was bothered by the accusations and conflict alluded to in the message. The good that FishExplorer does FAR outweighs any negatives. We also know and believe in FishExplorer intentions. It is to spread knowledge and goodwill and not destroy any resource. We can find enough conflict in other places in today's world. Let's appreciate the treasure we have in FishExplorer and imagine a world without it! It would be more empty.
So let's enjoy spring and open water and the good things we have...
ObsessedFisherman, CO 3/15/2011 11:41:24 AM
Glad the House is safe cause I for one love it and all that comes with it good, bad and ugly it is just life IMO but could be worse................
TroutGod, CO 3/15/2011 1:35:21 PM
fishhooker, CO 3/15/2011 3:37:05 PM
Regarding the open forum and the smaller bodies of water getting blasted once someone posts about them on the forum: I would suggest to make it where you have to be a member (not neccasarily + membership) to view most of the forum. I have seen other forum sites (fishing, hunting and other activities) do this and I like it. I know that FxR is about helping other anglers, and is a great resource for that. Just wanted to throw that out as maybe a compromise and maybe even gain more positive membership. I know there are a lot of "lookers" that may not like that idea, but its still free.
llombardi87, CO 3/15/2011 3:51:25 PM
I agree fishhooker... the forum can still be free, but requiring a login would eliminate a lot of the looker attention the site gets. If people would like the benefits Fish Explorer has to offer, then maybe they should join up and be a part of our community.
jamesavp, ND 3/15/2011 7:52:04 PM
I do use the site and help those that ask for it. I have also met some great people from this site. However I do not post pics anymore. When I crop the back ground out I got bombarded for it b/c i wanted to hide my spot. I do agree that once you post nice fish from a sweet spot it could get exploited. And fishing pressure increases. Its not just this site but any local fishing websites. It is a double edge sword b/c you want to promote sportsmanship and share the great pleasure of fishing however you could be hurting you fishing of that spot or small lake, or pond at the same time. tough situation for sure. So now I will just stick to commenting and helping where I can.
P.S. "Please Catch and release trophys so my kid can enjoy catching one too"
paulent, CO 3/15/2011 8:07:42 PM
let's try to keep the open and free exchange of ideas without getting personal about it. It's possible to make a point and still keep it polite. Lots of anger going around.
fom, CO 3/15/2011 8:19:37 PM
Bravo brother !!!!!!!
COYOT, CO 3/15/2011 9:34:26 PM
A great big thankyou!
Catfish goon, CO 3/15/2011 9:46:58 PM
I agree with JamesAVP wholeheartedly. there's nothing wrong with sharing information, as long as you are smart about it.
I love this site and have met good people from here.
RonnyCast, CO 3/15/2011 11:50:58 PM
I didnít see the response that Dave had to remove but I can extrapolate as to its nature. In a perfect world, knowledge would and could be free flowing with no chance of such knowledge being put to use by those who would seek to do harm. Unfortunately we donít live in such a world. Surely the vast majority of the Fishexplorer users are seeking knowledge in an effort to make themselves more skilled as well as more responsible angles. Itís not those folks we need worry about. Itís those who desire to do harm and perhaps deliberately break the law that we need to be cautious of. Knowledge unearned is often knowledge unappreciated.
FireFish, CO 3/16/2011 11:52:36 AM
Grubs, CO 3/16/2011 12:44:46 PM
Dave, I started using Fish Explorer a few years back and it really has made me a better fisherman. In addition I have met some wonderful outdoorsmans and made a few new friendships. But I did make the mistake of posting a hunting success story a few months back and was immeidately attacked by a certain member. A lot of +members and others stood by my side through this but when it was all said and done (edited), it seemed as if the rules outlined only apply to certain individuals.... just because you have 2000 points next to your name it shouldn't give you the right to bash others. So I hope that in the future you stick by your guns with the zero tolerance towards trash talking and toss out those that do regardless of there status! And yes,,,,,, I understand that this is a fishing site and will not post hunting successes anymore:)
Weezy22, CO 3/16/2011 2:55:52 PM
I can respect your wishes listed above - I will give my two cents and try not to be too negative.
I think a lot of the "FishExploiter.com" attitudes come from the fact that there is a lot of irresponsible fishing reports posted here.
For example: if I get on here and post a report on a small metro pond with some pictures of bass, that place will get hammered and abused very quickly. So obviously, I choose not to post locations here or on the other ColoradoFisherman.com site. However, not everyone uses this common sense, and you will see some negative results on local fisheries.
As some others posted above, a lot of the traffic on these sites comes from "guests" who are just here to browse, take information and go fish what's hot. I support making everyone become a member to view reports - I think this could help immensely.
Furthermore, I think eliminating names of smaller bodies of water could help as well. Some of those fisheries just can't handle the type of pressure this resource creates, not to mention the litter created.
I think most of the negative attention this site and others get can be accounted for with some of the reasons listed above. I do not mean to "bash" the site, but it always sucks when you see a post on your favorite fishing hole, and a resulting crowd trashing the place...
fbfb, CO 3/16/2011 3:02:53 PM
by fbfb this site is great for info and tips,as long as your fishing with a lic. keep or catch and release, quit bashing the other group
Tiny Stevens, CO 3/17/2011 2:22:44 AM
I agree and thank you for your time and efforts Dave and all of the staff ! I think that some of the issues, and disrespect have come due to the "growing pains" of the site. Which, in my opinion , just proves how great of a site and wealth of information that it brings ! if it is the place that non members go to get up to date info and tips and techniques, then clearly, it is the best site available. I am all for having a sign in/ login process in order to view the forums . Better yet.. we all need to be smart about our posts, and think about things before we post pics, specific lake info, etc. I know, I am guilty of this as well.
Just my opinions, that's all.
Keep up the great work !
MakoMyDay, CO 3/17/2011 7:28:32 AM
I for one have been very irresponsible with my posts on this site. I will not do it again though. I don't mind helping some people out but all the over exposure cant be good. For example, If I post I caught 60 nice fish in a half day at a specific lake and 1200 people (most of them being "lookers" and non +side members) view it, guess where they will be going. I have seen it happen 1st hand. I like looking at pics and reading fish stories so I'll just stick to that. I am leaving CO in a few months so it doesn't really have an effect on me but it does to others so I wont do it anymore.. Im not trying to trash your house im just trying to say less is more when posting some things. You can toss me out if you want but I had to say it. ps If you don't want your honey hole to be pillaged then crop the back round of your photos. Peace out homeys, Mako
David Coulson (Flyrodn), CO 3/17/2011 8:35:44 AM
Thank you all for your comments. It is interesting that we promote the exchange of information, helping you fellow sportsmen become better fishers, which I see as including educating about conservation, all species not just bass. We provide lake pages with information on the state's waters, where we pull together in one place what can be found elsewhere (no secretes reveled) and we work with the agencies to ensure the information is accurate (yes we error on occasion). We ask for conditions reports from our members (not seen by non-members), not fishing reports. Never have we asked anyone to post a honey hole, or secrete spot (no such thing) or even a fishing report on the forum. Yet, that is what everyone is complaining about. I read in a B.A.S.S mag a humor section, "What they really are saying." When your buddy promises to not reveal your honey hole, what he really means is he won't tell anyone other than his brother and he'll make him promise not to tell his 86 fellow bass club members. Point. If you tell anyone, it's no longer a secrete, everyone will soon know about it.
Tbubb, CO 3/17/2011 9:29:04 AM
They say a secret is something you tell just one other person... but that chain continues. I just had a discussion with another member offline (actually it was Mako) about this. If each person tells one other person, the whole world eventually knows. The only difference is the speed at which it happens.
No less, the question is how many people actually react to it and 'pursue' your honey hole. I'm one of those guys that doesn't chase after the new 'best place.' But I'm sure that there are people who do.
Human nature is not that different no matter the sport. As a rock-climber of 20+ years, I've seen this battled out in the outdoors and in internet forums before. Substitute 'routes' for 'fish' and 'crags' for 'lakes' and you have the exact same discussions over and over. Shoot, surfers beat each other up and vandalize cars over 'locals only' beaches.
In every case, a touch of civility would improve the situation.
MLP5420, CO 3/18/2011 8:58:25 AM
This site has helped me so much ever since I joined. Not so much as to where to fish but how to fish, what to look for and when to go. i love this site and reccomend it to almost every fisherperson i encounter.
Personally, I think honey holes are always going to be found and exploited. No honey hole will ever be kept a secret forever and I kind of enjoy the search for new honey holes, could be better than the last.
Champsheart, CO 3/18/2011 10:54:12 AM
This is the first time I have ever posted on this forum, but i feel the need to weigh in on this. While this site does do good and helps some people become better fisherman and promotes conswervation, it does do harm as well. The issue is you have hundreds and hundreds of people looking at this site, and more and more as time goes by. A percentage of those people are not responsible or respect other fisherman, so what happens is when a body of water is posted on this site with nice fish it brings all kinds of riff raff in and in large numbers. In my honest opinion I think the site does more harm than good. I have 2 spots that at one time i considered my favorite spots, hardly ever any pressure and if there was a few people there, they where always very considerate of the resource and other people, WELP each place someone decided they wanted to show of the fish they caught, nice fish, next thing you know in each situation the place was pounded with people who where inconsiderate, casting over folks, leaving litter, dead fish on shore, and just ruined both spots. After this occured i decided these sites mean well, but really cause some issues. If I take someone out to fish and they catch anything, I always plead to not post anything on this site, please. The issue really comes down to there is a lot of wrong in our society and a lot of peopl who just dont care or have respect anymore, these sites bring them on in great numbers because all they want to know if where are the fish being caught.
BCIII, CO 3/20/2011 8:47:25 AM
i don't recall seeing the ignorant comments, as it doesn't really matter either. I've always said and will continue to say this. It's a public forum. Free will if you say.... Ignorance and or mis educated folks will roam these parts like havalinna pigs. I wish people could take this site for what it is and leave it at that. But as long as you have access to create a username or password you will continue to get those comments down the road. Ya know what's sad.... It's the cost of providing useful, helpful, entertaining information to the general public. I agree 100% with ya Dave. Hopefully your message gets read.
Catfish goon, CO 3/20/2011 11:45:58 AM
Champsheart said exactly how I feel. I'm not going to namedrop examples but there's lakes on here I won't fish on here anymore because they got ruined thanks to reckless information sharing via the internet. while I'm for sharing information on larger lakes, I think the smaller ones need to be left alone and to only be discovered by the curious fisherman with a "fishing close to home" book. but unfortunately, this isn't my site and this is only my opinion. the only thing I can do is speak up when someone's being irresponsible.
jmoore4303, CO 3/24/2011 2:59:44 PM
The fact of the matter is that Colorado warmwater fishery is very small we have 5-7 major bodies of water to fish from and virtually 50-60 small acre rural and city ponds to fish. These small bodies of water cannot hold up without committed catch and release programs. I have bass fished from California to Texas for about 35 years and I have yet to see a more unstable warm water fishery then Colorado I am not saying there are not good fish to be caught because there is... it just takes them 7 or 8 years to get to a nice size. All I am saying is I have never cooked any Colorado bass. Catch a fish take a pic let it go for the next person to enjoy...it really is that simple. As far as sharing your favorite spot do that with your kids. Give general information I have played this game long enough to know you can hand a person in the boat or on shore with you that bait you are catching everything with and they couldn't buy a bite to save the day and there is no secret in your fishing world unless you tell no one and lets face it we all need those 1 or 2 places that really are your own.
MakoMyDay, CO 3/24/2011 4:10:46 PM
People keep and eat bass out there? Wow no wonder the bass fishing well below average. Im from back east and Ive never met or heard of anyone keeping bass. C.G., Ive been doing good at a lake for lakers and I wont even think about posting it on here. Not that I won't share with some but I wont put it on here.
Mountainbilly, CO 3/30/2011 7:40:02 PM
Alot of us Hardcore anglers never harvest fish. If you still harvest fish think about species, location, and numbers that would be present at that location. Selective harvesting can be beneficial to a fishery. On the other hand irresponsible knuckleheads yankin fish out left and right for the frying pan need to educate themselves on the damage they can do to a productive fishery. I heard they are good but seriously who eats largemouths? Trust me I love catching a ten pound carp but you wont catch me with it on my plate.In addition the regulations need to be more lake-river specific. Step your game up D.O.W. and the rest of us will follow suit.
Catfish goon, CO 3/30/2011 11:57:29 PM
I'm gonna say as a side note...bass tastes real good. like a firm bluegill or crappie. don't dog people who enjoy eating bass. people in the south eat em up.
marky marmooska, CO 4/1/2011 9:05:19 PM
We should not forget that we're all in this boat together fishing for the same fish. Why not help the next guy net a fish.
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