Inactive LumberJocks or Silent Lurkers

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Forum topic by ShopTinker posted 06-21-2012 05:05 AM 2904 views 0 times favorited 54 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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884 posts in 3009 days

06-21-2012 05:05 AM

Topic tags/keywords: lumberjocks members question comments

I finally got around to downloading and searching the LumberJock directories put together by KnickKnack and searching through it for folks in Indiana. Specifically any within a 30 to 45 minute drive of my house. I thought it would nice to try and make a LJ connection or two.

It was a little sad to see how many people are inactive. Many of the ones that I checked haven’t posted a comment in 270 days or more. Several hadn’t made a comment or post in almost two years. Maybe they are still out there reading and keeping their thoughts to themselves. I’ve never developed that ability. Recently I’ve been really short on time, and traveling a lot, so I haven’t commented much on the projects that I’ve looked at. When I do steal some time to look at what my LJ buddies have been up to I generally look and leave, but I still end up making a comment on one or two projects.

That leads me to believe that these Jocks aren’t on the site if they aren’t commenting. It would be nice to know when the last time a person was on the site was. Some kind of indicator they they were still around even if they aren’t posting anything. It doesn’t need to be specific. Maybe a “Last Logged on date or when it’s been more than a month it should say so. “Last logged on: One month ago”, two months ago, etc… Maybe it could say they are Inactive after 60 or 90 days without checking in.

Maybe I’m the only one who cares about this.

-- Dan - Valparaiso, Indiana, "A smart man changes his mind, a fool never does."

54 replies so far

View patron's profile


13641 posts in 3582 days

#1 posted 06-21-2012 05:18 AM

the only indicator i know
is to go to their home page
and their comment s section keeps tabs on that
(not if they have been lurking)
some come on without logging in
and can slide around without showing on ‘who’s online’

i looked recently at who had ‘favorited’ some thing i made
and found some guy i never heard of
so i went to his home page

he has been here for 2 years
and never commented anywhere
or posted a project or a blog or forum

but he did have 167 things ‘favorited’
from all over LJ’s

i wondered if he just comes for ideas
and has some ‘original custom’ works he sells
on the net

i know we all share as we can here
so i had to forget what it might mean from him
everything comes out in the wash
sooner or later

i do know it is nice to meet and get to know some
of our buddies in real life
i’ve been fortunate to met many in my travels

maybe a PM to some of those around you
might just be up to having some company too

it’s worth a try anyway

good luck work safe

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View rance's profile


4267 posts in 3401 days

#2 posted 06-21-2012 05:32 AM

I don’t think it makes much difference unless you are looking for locals. I could care less how many inactive members there are. The time span on a pulse page is much more important to me.

Edit: Yeah David, I’ve seen that too. Kinda weird.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View Ted's profile


2875 posts in 2452 days

#3 posted 06-21-2012 05:39 AM

I think it’s just the nature of the Internet… lot’s of people just looking for information, inspiration or just curious as to what’s out there, but not really into partaking in online communities or meeting people they don’t know personally.

I was running a home improvement forum some years back and noticed that only about 20% of the people who signed up ever posted anything. They didn’t have to, to see all the posts, as it was completely public. Only thing private was members’ profiles, and that’s only if the members opted to make it private (only their friends could see it), which most of them didn’t. I’m figure the lurkers signed up just to see if they were missing anything, and quickly realized doing so just allowed them to post topics and replies.

I have also done random searches on facebook to find that many members signed up but never did anything more than that. It’s just how the Wild World Web works I guess.

-- You can collect dust or you can make dust. I choose to make it.

View Ted's profile


2875 posts in 2452 days

#4 posted 06-21-2012 05:46 AM

Then again there’s always wood fetishes…. just sayin’

-- You can collect dust or you can make dust. I choose to make it.

View KnickKnack's profile


1094 posts in 3807 days

#5 posted 06-21-2012 06:19 AM

I’m with you Dan – I think it would be nice to see some sort of “last logged in” info – that’s the nature of the beast that is me :-)
I can’t see it happening though.

-- "Do not speak – unless it improves on silence." --- "Following the rules and protecting the regulations is binding oneself without rope."

View ShopTinker's profile


884 posts in 3009 days

#6 posted 06-21-2012 12:05 PM

David: Those 167 Favorited things with no comments is very weird. I can’t understand liking something enough to favorite it, meaning I want to make one like it someday, and not giving the creator kudos for their effort.

Rance: Your right, it doesn’t affect our use of the site. Unless you’re hunting for locals, which people like to do.

TedW: Did you hear about the guy who had an uncontrollable wood fetish. His fetish for all things made from wood was so bad that it created a terrible strain on his marriage. It became so bad, in fact, that when he was on a woodworking site browsing projects; and fantasizing about cutting, planning, and sanding wood that he had to hide what he was doing by quickly switching to a Porn site whenever his wife walked into the room?

Yea, me neither!

Roger: I didn’t figure there was much of a chance it would ever happen, but if it wasn’t mentioned it was guaranteed to never happen.

-- Dan - Valparaiso, Indiana, "A smart man changes his mind, a fool never does."

View Tennessee's profile


2893 posts in 2755 days

#7 posted 06-21-2012 12:21 PM

The guy probably favorited the things because it created a neat list of items he would make and sell. What better way to refer back to a rather large list without having to write it down or print out pages?

I’ll admit, I look at things that people build to get ideas, but I always try to at least leave a great comment when I look. I think most of us have done that. We take an element here, a part there, and hopefully come up with something that is nice, but ours. But many just are looking for things to build and sell. Take a look at, at his bandsaw box lineup. Not much original there, most of us who have made these things have made ones like his. And his “trademark hidden drawer” is a bit of a stretch, calling it trademarked. But he apparently is making a killing.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View Milo's profile


869 posts in 3560 days

#8 posted 06-21-2012 12:50 PM


After my Dad died I was off the board for almost a year or so. People come and go. I wouldn’t surprise me if people come and go like the tide…


-- Beer, Beer, Thank God for Beer. It's my way of keeping my mind fresh and clear...

View JusticeBeaver's profile


26 posts in 2749 days

#9 posted 06-21-2012 01:48 PM

I confess, I lurk. Love looking at projects. Love to search for solutions to my many, many woodworking dilemmas (like, how do you keep from stumping your toe on the mobile base of a bandsaw?). I don’t post much because I either find the answer to my question by searching or don’t have enough experience to answer anyone else’s question.

Also, I’m probably the slowest woodworker ever so I don’t make that many projects so not a lot to post there!

-- Lonnie - Peachtree Corners, GA

View dbhost's profile


5767 posts in 3473 days

#10 posted 06-21-2012 02:02 PM

I used to be much more active in the truck forums than I am now. So I am sure I look like either inactive or a lurker over there. But I do still participate periodically…

There are some LJs whose profiles are still here for archival purposes, their digital remains as it were. We have sadly lost a few members of our community over the years, and it would be a tragedy if their historic contributions here were taken away from us by arbitrary deletion.

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View DamnYankee's profile


3312 posts in 2803 days

#11 posted 06-21-2012 02:12 PM

While I am fairly active on LJs, I can also say that my posting on various projects/forums/blogs etc has at least narrowed if not dropped.

I no longer post “nice job” “wonderful work” type comments on ALL the projects anymore because I found if I did that I wouldn’t stop posting as 99% of the projects I see here are wonderful.

Additionally, as I have moved through this woodworking addiction I’ve become more selective in what forums/blogs/reviews I read. I use to read almost all the tool reviews, but as my tool collection has grown I do so less and less. As far as forums/blogs I am finding that if I posted I am the latest in a long string of posters saying the same thing. So other than some of my “buddies” blogs/forums I usually only post when I feel I have something to add (like this one).

In the end, we all end up using this site for different reasons. Heck, in many ways I use LJs almost more as a woodworker centric version of social media.

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View ShopTinker's profile


884 posts in 3009 days

#12 posted 06-21-2012 02:21 PM

Milo: I certainly understand about life getting in the way of interests.

Lonnie: I understand completely. I haven’t post any “real” woodworking projects. All of my projects this year have been doing stuff for the wife or helping my kids at their houses. It seems that most of my projects this year have been plumbing, gas lines and sink drains.

dbhost: I agree with you. I would not want to delete a profile that had been active. Especially those who’ve passed on. I have an an adult nephew that drowned about two years ago. His friends and siblings still post comments to him on his Facebook page when they are thinking about him.

-- Dan - Valparaiso, Indiana, "A smart man changes his mind, a fool never does."

View Kookaburra's profile


748 posts in 2465 days

#13 posted 06-21-2012 02:48 PM

For those not posting a comment but favoriting – quite likely English is not their first language and they are hesitant to post. I have faced that issue on several other forums I have moderated. They may be taking the text part of the projects or forums and running them through babelfish to get the gist of the discussion. One of the nice things about the internet is gettting comments from all over the world – I wish there was a way to convince these members that perfect English is not a requirement!

-- Kay - Just a girl who loves wood.

View Kernal's profile


29 posts in 2518 days

#14 posted 06-21-2012 03:10 PM

I can chime in as a regular lurker. I’m fairly new to the site; only made an account a few months ago, but I check the site a few times a week, and always look at all the projects. I’ve only made a few posts (3? 4 now?) in that time, but that doesn’t mean I’ve left the site.

The biggest reason I don’t post is entirely a style issue: I tend not to make comments that have no content. Being fairly new to woodworking, I generally don’t have a lot to say so I say nothing. Naturally there are many cases where I probably should make comments even if there’s no content, for example stating admiration of someone else’s project, but I haven’t been.

I’m sure every lurker’s story is different; this is mine. I hope it helps you understand a little more.


-- A new version of the old adage - "Count twice, buy once."

View Karson's profile


35154 posts in 4641 days

#15 posted 06-21-2012 03:18 PM

Those of us in the English Speaking world, many times don’t realize that a good many people don’t use english as their language. They might be able to speak it but are not comfortable reading it.

I could see making a list of favorites where I could see the pictures to help make a project.

There is a person on LJ that lives about 20 minutes away from me. I have made him my buddy and he has made me his buddy. But, the address in his workshop doesn’t exist. The shop looks great. He doesn’t reply to any emails, but his profile states that if you want to drop by send him a message and he’ll be there.

I can’t figure that one out either.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia †

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