Lately I've been leaving a couple forums. I can't say the mood has been sudden. I think it's that I'm finally starting to listen to what I have been thinking and feeling about them for a long while now.
First I left FUS. I was at FUS for probably 1½ years. Then when I saw someone (who I didn't really know by the way) being repeatedly bashed by some of the forum visitors, I felt disgusted with the place. There were other problems too -- didn't get along with the admins, and I didn't like the negativity around FUS. A lot of people were speaking out against the bashing that was going on, and I used that moment to leave. My leave was well understood by many... or at least that's the story going around.
Then just the other day I left SFGHQ. I had been going to these forums mainly to promote my ProSonic project. I had been posting less frequently the last few months I was there for two reasons -- ProSonic interest seemed to take a dive (I guess they wanted less talk and more visual), and I've noticed some members getting pushed around by rude comments. I too have been the subject of rude comments. I usually push them to the side or make a low-level defensive statement against them. However when I made a topic about my recent GAO encryption I've been discussing, few people seemed interested. That was fine, but then one comment finally fired me up -- "Am I the only one who thinks this statement comes off as incredibly pretentious?" (referring to my October 27 deadline). Some people don't see the big deal, but I do. I argued and he continued on to say that my encryption would fail and basically never become anything. Never would he discuss what I truly wanted to discuss. So I left, and people thought it was the dumbest reason to leave... or at least that's the story going around.
If you compare these two situations, they're the same, yet they're different. I had a feeling I wouldn't get the same type of feedback I got from FUS. It's all timing. If you leave when all the problems involved aren't right up front where people can see them, then they're only going to look at the icing instead of the entire cake. They're obviously going to think you're nuts. If you leave at the moment when bigger problems are apparent, people probably won't think you're so crazy. It's interesting how people react so differently when distress is in the air around you than when it's only in the shoes you walk in.
Truth is I was planning to leave SFGHQ for months, but I never did because I thought maybe things would get better. It's not a horrible place, but I just don't like some of the attitudes of people -- "elitists" I call some of them. Elitism is thinking you're above others... but I look at it with a stereo-type that so far hasn't failed me. The stereo-type of an elitist is someone who thinks he/she can say whatever they want with complete disregard to anyone's feelings. If you have a problem with what they say, tough -- "that's life" they always say. But I say its people like them who make life that way. Outside the internet, it's like I live in a very different world. It's still life, yet I am surrounded by people I actually like! Perhaps that's because there's less of that elitism that I talk about.
The moral of all of this -- if they think you're wrong, you might be, or it could be that they're blind to see anything your way because they're used to their own environment. Just do what you believe and stick it to anyone who wants to laugh at you because of it. In most cases, you know if your actions have been warranted or not.