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akiy
08-07-2002, 01:01 PM
Hi everyone,

I just started up several new forums here in the AikiWeb Forums on an experimental basis.

The first is the "Voices of Experience" forum which is open for posting for people with at least twenty years of active aikido experience. The forum is viewable by all, but you'll need to fill out a form (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/experience.html) if you wish to get permission to post in it. You'll find more information in the forum's charter located here (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/announcement.php?forumid=57).

Also, I just opened up a handful of forums specifically designed for people who wish to discuss aikido in a language other than English. I have tentatively opened up forums for the German, Spanish, French, Japanese, and Portuguese languages. You'll find them at the bottom of the main forum page or you can follow this link (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?forumid=59) to get to them.

I'm hoping these experimental forums will enrich the already fertile enviroment for discussions that we have here already. Please feel free to let me know if you have any feedback, suggestions, or thoughts!

-- Jun

jk
08-07-2002, 10:29 PM
Jun,

The "Voices of Experience" forum sounds like a great idea; a relatively chatter-free environment may encourage some very experienced aikidoka to de-lurk. I hope it builds critical mass soon.

BTW, my thanks for your continued good work and energy in maintaining Aikiweb.

Regards,

rachmass
08-08-2002, 07:07 AM
Jun,

The "voices of experience" forum is an excellent idea and it will be interesting for all of us to see. Are you going to float some topics out there for the VOE to get started on? do you have any idea what percentage of your readership/participants have that much ACTIVE experience (I've got 20 plus, but two were inactive, so I've got to wait another year plus)?

Thanks for the great job you've been doing with this website!

Rachel

akiy
08-08-2002, 09:14 AM
Are you going to float some topics out there for the VOE to get started on?
One idea I had was that I could "moderate" the forum for questions people may have of these people with experience.

Any thoughts, oh those of you already with access to the "Voices of Experience" (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?forumid=57) forum?
do you have any idea what percentage of your readership/participants have that much ACTIVE experience (I've got 20 plus, but two were inactive, so I've got to wait another year plus)?
I don't think it's a very high percentage, but I sure hope it'll go up!

There's only a handful of people who have access to the "Voices of Experience" forum currently. I personally have quite a while to go before I can post there!
Thanks for the great job you've been doing with this website!
You're very welcome! Without everyone's contributions and open communication in the spirit of sharing, the website wouldn't be the place it is.

-- Jun

akiy
08-08-2002, 12:39 PM
Also, please feel free to let others know about the new "Voices of Experience" forum as well as the new foreign language forums. The more, the merrier!

-- Jun

IrimiTom
08-08-2002, 01:45 PM
Thanks so much for the foreign languages forums and all the work you put into the website, Jun.

Is Kami "in charge" of these forums or something like that?

akiy
08-08-2002, 01:52 PM
Thanks so much for the foreign languages forums and all the work you put into the website, Jun.
You're welcome!
Is Kami "in charge" of these forums or something like that?
No, Ubaldo is just another one of the prolific polyglots here.

I may have to try brushing off my Spanish and German myself, huh?

-- Jun

akiy
08-08-2002, 05:34 PM
Hi everyone,

In hopes of helping people read some of the foreign language posts (as well as help translate English posts to various languages), I put in a "translation" feature at the bottom of every thread.

You should now see a "Translate from" drop-down box near the bottom right side of the page when you're looking at a thread.

It may not provide the best translations and puts the page into an ugly frame, but, hey -- it's free...

-- Jun

akiy
08-08-2002, 06:03 PM
You should now see a "Translate from" drop-down box near the bottom right side of the page when you're looking at a thread.
Following up here, I just put the same "Translate from" drop-down box at the bottom of pretty much all of the static pages (articles, interviews, book/video reviews and such) here on AikiWeb.

Hopefully, this will enable non-English speaking folks who are interested to read a rough machine-translation of what's here on AikiWeb.

I have to admit, though -- some of the translations are pretty darned weird!

-- Jun

Jim23
08-08-2002, 10:13 PM
Jun,

This forum leaves a strange taste in my mouth: a forum where senior people can talk to each other and others can only read what they say. If they want to communicate with each other this way, fine. Keep it private and don't let others in on their conversations.

A bit elitist for aikido, is'nt it?

Jim23

akiy
08-08-2002, 10:31 PM
Hi Jim,

I hear what you're saying, and I've had the same kind of thought myself.

However, I've received feedback over the years from people who participated in (or tried to, in any case) different kinds of aikido communication venues. One piece of feedback that I received was that some folks wished there was a way to communicate with other "experienced" people. I wanted to create that venue but still keep it "public" in the sense that the general public could read what they were writing.

There's nothing preventing anyone, of course, from starting up the same kind of thread in the other forums and inviting the experienced folks into it.

As I said, the "Voices of Experience" forum is something experimental. I'd like to see where it goes before I label it as anything.

Thanks for the thoughts, in any case. Anyone else?

-- Jun

MaylandL
08-09-2002, 02:13 AM
Hello Jun

Glad you enjoy the Camp. I *really* wish I was there :( . It sounded like lots of fun. Oh well maybe next time.

I like the idea of the New forum. From what I've read there's nothing stopping others from discussing the posts.

Perhaps others (with less experience) on this forum could put requests to those on the New Forum for discussion. Kind of like a question to the panel of experts. You as the moderator could vet these questions. Just a thought.

Btw..great job with the website. Thanks :)

Deb Fisher
08-10-2002, 06:33 PM
One of the reasons this is a great forum is the frequent contributions by Ledyard, Clark, Goldsbury, et al, and it makes sense to condense that knowledge. I'll be an avid reader of the new forum, but I wonder if it would be less 'elitist' if it functioned more like the polls and articles forum. What if there was a link at the end of a VOE thread to a separate forum where all the aikido-obsessed and bored-at-work 5th and 6th kyu like myself, who are long on opinions and shortish on knowledge, could discuss the VOE thread amongst our ignorant selves?

This would make the VOE thread function a little more like school. It's more complicated, though, and that's rarely a good thing.

Whatever, that's my $.02. Thanks for aikiweb, Jun. May I never get work done at my desk again!

Deb

mike lee
08-11-2002, 03:27 AM
When the elitists take control, all dissenting voices will be crushed by those with the biggest tire around their waist! Long live the new world order!!! :eek:

P.S. Look before you leap.

Chuck Clark
08-11-2002, 09:31 AM
Mike,

I think you have a good point. That's why its good that the VOE forum requires a specific choice before you click to enter it. If you don't like the idea, you have the choice to not enter. Problem solved.

Deb Fisher
08-11-2002, 12:19 PM
This is an art that takes a really long time to learn; dojo function as meritocracies, they aren't democratic. Of course they are - we are all there to learn.

I feel like I have plenty of rope on aikiweb already - as a 5th kyu I can expound like crazy on a multitude of topics and use the knowledge that I do have - this is part of learning.

So is listening. I think there is a place for listening to people who have done it longer on this forum.

... or it could just be part of an aikido plot - the VOE forum could take over the world! Whoahahahahahhahaha!

Deb

akiy
08-11-2002, 12:20 PM
Hi Mike,

I agree with what Chuck said and would also like to point out that there are 22 other forums here in which everyone (including one for anonymous postings) can post. There's nothing stopping people from starting the same topic thread on another forum and there's nothing stopping the folks participating in the Voices of Experience forum from participating in the other 22 forums.

As I have mentioned before, The Voices of Experience forum is an experiment. Let's see how it goes for a while before declaring it a "new world order," huh?

-- Jun

Jim ashby
08-12-2002, 10:24 AM
The VOE forum is a great idea. I'm really looking forward to learning a lot from those eligible to post. I am very lucky to be part of a Dojo that has a lot of people in it with over twenty years experience, when they talk I listen, I don't have to agree with what is said but I do listen.

Have fun.

Jim23
08-14-2002, 01:18 PM
Hi Jim,

Do you ask questions too? :D

Personally, I don't like it.

Let's see, we listen to the senior people (just a handful) discuss various topics, then we can either discuss their views in another thread (sort of behind their back) or start a new one and maybe they'll respond (again, sort of behind their back).

And the comment about not entering the forum if you don't like it ... right.

Although I have no problem with the content of the forum - interesting reading so far - I think it reeks of ego which supposedly has no place in aikido.

I seem to be alone on this one, but that's my opinion. Only time will tell.

Jim23

Jim ashby
08-15-2002, 03:41 AM
Hi Jim. Yes I do ask questions, mostly of myself. However, the VOE forum is not open to me as a poster. I will keep an open mind and also I will probably post on any other discussion regarding their forum. I hardly think a side discussion thread is "behind their back" as it's on the same server and is available to the members of VOE!!.

Have fun.

mike lee
08-15-2002, 03:59 AM
Let them pump up their egos and their spare tires while we pump up our training. :do:

Jim ashby
08-15-2002, 04:03 AM
Mike, surely you're not suggesting that they don't train?

Have fun.

PeterR
08-15-2002, 04:25 AM
So let me get this straight Mike. Chuck, Chris and whoever else gets to be in VOE got togeather and offered various assorted inducements for Jun to come up with an idea which by its very nature excluded him. Yeah right.

And what was that idea? For some people to discuss issues that might be of interest to a wider group but free of the chatter delivered by the rest of us plebes. Face it there is an awful lot of that.

What burned your toast - did you try to get into the group and fail. For infos sake how often do YOU train. Why do I get the distince feeling its a lot less than those you are attacking.

mike lee
08-15-2002, 04:47 AM
Refer to my previous post on making assumptions.

PeterR
08-15-2002, 04:58 AM
Refer to my previous post on making assumptions.
You seem to be making some pretty broad assumptions yourself.

Let them pump up their egos and their spare tires while we pump up our training.

mike lee
08-15-2002, 05:34 AM
Maybe, or maybe not.

memyselfandi
08-15-2002, 07:23 AM
From my scant reading here, it would seem that many people are very upset by this new forum. It seems to me that some feel that just because they do not have as many years training, it does not mean that they are any less qualified to give a "Voice of Experience". In fact, I'm sure that there are many here with much fewer than 20 years who are indeed more qualified to give advise.

Perhaps as compromise, a forum could be created (or VOE modified) for those who have actually taught in life. Those Sensei's and Sempai's who can tuthfully say that they have in the past given their "Voice of Experience" and it has been accepted and welcomed by their students. While there may be others who could give such quality advise, my guess is that those who have instructed for any number of years will be able to give better advise then the vast majority of those who have merely trained. (not to diminish anyones training, it just seems to me that teaching and training are very different experiences, and doing one does not mean that you are qualified to do the other).

Just my $.02, which I very well understand is not worth as much as it would be coming someone who as actually taken Aikido ;)

mike lee
08-15-2002, 10:34 AM
From my experience, forming exclusive groups in aikido is contradictory to its basic philosophy, and seldom results in anything positive. I would never become party to it.

Andy
08-15-2002, 10:44 AM
From my experience, forming exclusive groups in aikido is contradictory to its basic philosophy, and seldom results in anything positive. I would never become party to it.
Do you wear a black belt? A hakama?

mike lee
08-15-2002, 11:39 AM
No. I only wear a gi and a white belt in summer training. This is for several reasons: The class is small and less formal; I want the students to see my footwork more easily; I want the students to realize that we are all basically the same -- that is students learning aikido.
There are several reasons that most of our classes are open to all levels of experience. First, this approach enables new students to train more frequently with more experienced students. This helps to bring new students "up to speed" sooner. Second, it enables experienced students to train more frequently with new students. As the experienced students help the new students learn, this effort increases the experienced students' depth of understanding of aikido technique. Further, this approach avoids the tracking of students by outward signs of rank and experience, and emphasizes that all dojo members must work together to extend their understanding of aikido.

This is from the Web page of Aikido of Northern Virginia, and it sums up the way I have always been taught to train in aikido.

Kami
08-15-2002, 02:35 PM
Hi Jim,

As I said, the "Voices of Experience" forum is something experimental. I'd like to see where it goes before I label it as anything.

Thanks for the thoughts, in any case. Anyone else?

-- Jun
KAMI : Dear Jun,

Since you ask, I would like to make a point. I believe there's a big difference between the dojo and this Forum.

In the dojo, we have hierarchy and some separation; here we try to have a more democratic place with less hierarchy. That does not mean we do not recognize some people's experience and expertize and that we do not honour them. As for myself, I've come to respect many of them as George Ledyard, Chuck Clark, Peter Goldsbury and quite a number of others.But I really enjoy the way we may talk freely with other people, without fear of restrictions.

I really do not like the new forum.It creates a separation and it gives the impression (maybe wrong) of a group of venerable old man pontifying about mysterious things, without interference.

What we need is their participation with all of us, explaining/contributing to the general good.

It's different with the foreign languages forums. Here we have a place where people with small control of the english language can post freely and contribute to the discussions. That's why I'm contributing heavily in the first stages, even at the risk of Irimi Tom thinking I'm "controlling" those lists...:(

Anyway, I'm just posting my position. Now, let me get back to my cave, to avoid the blood-thirsty wolves attacking this poor frail old man...;)

Best

Chris Li
08-15-2002, 08:17 PM
I really do not like the new forum.It creates a separation and it gives the impression (maybe wrong) of a group of venerable old man pontifying about mysterious things, without interference.
Now, now, I'm really not that old, but that may be because I just made the 20 year requirement - the other guys, now they're old :) .
What we need is their participation with all of us, explaining/contributing to the general good.
I'd point out that there's nothing stopping anybody from explaining/contributing on a seperate thread, and that none of the people in that forum (I would think) would cease to participate in the open threads.

That being said, I had (and have) mixed feelings about it myself, but my opinion about these kind of things is that there's really no way to see how things are going to work without trying them out. Things may go well, or they may not, or the whole thing may never reach critical mass, I say just give it a try and see what happens.

Best,

Chris

Chuck Clark
08-15-2002, 09:35 PM
I feel the same way...wait a minute, what were we talking about??? Wait til I get back from getting another doughnut (creame filled, of course). I can hardly reach the keyboard these days...my spare tire, you understand. Oh yeah, the VOE forum.

I agree with you, Chris. I'm gonna say whatever I'm gonna say, no matter what the forum is titled.

Regards,

Kelly Allen
12-12-2003, 04:45 AM
I have been disappointed in the VOE forum because no one was posting. Now that Furuya sensei is posting it has turned into an enjoyable read what with no trolls screwing up the thread. I just hope more of the senseis that can post there will.

Kelly