At 2:25 PM -0400 8/13/10, Ernie Buford wrote:
>It's all in the interpretation, isn't it?  That's one reason I was 
>soliciting feedback.  To be
>completely transparent, I was on the fence about your announcement. 
>It didn't particularly bother
>me personally, but I also share some concern expressed in a small 
>number of past complaints about
>the volume of photo links in some of your messages.  On the other 
>hand, I've appreciated much of
>what you have to share, and I expect that lots of subscribers enjoy 
>seeing your photos.

Thanks for the feedback.  I don't post here a lot, and the vast 
majority of what I do post here is specifically photo links because 
that's what I have to share.  I make a point of not updating the 
group every time I have photos to share.

I'll just put this out there for everyone to think about: I don't 
read most of what's posted here.  Unless there's something unusual 
way up North, I don't pay a lot of attention, because it's a bit out 
of my way.  But I just delete the posts that don't interest me.  And 
since I do camp and travel throughout the state, I love that at any 
point during the regular birding season, I can get a good sense of 
what people have seen up in, for example, Victory Basin, so having 
that living and evolving archive of what's going on throughout the 
state is something that I think of as an extremely valuable resource.

I also love the photo links that other birders share, both as a 
photographer and a bird lover.  Seeing the photos of the Northern 
Wheatear from a few years back was a lot more interesting than just 
reading about it.  This is one of the many reasons I share my own 
photos from time to time.

I've maintained listservs in the past and I still maintain internet 
forums on a variety of topics.  It's a bit of work and it's work that 
generally goes unpaid and underappreciated.  I like VTbird.  I think 
it's low enough volume to be able to keep up but high enough volume 
to keep a constant variety of posting and interest.  I don't see any 
need to pick any aspect of it apart or to narrow or expand its focus 
any, especially since I do have that wonderful piece of technology 
known as either 'the delete key" or "the mighty finger of doom," 
depending on your perspective.

But as someone who's run different forums on different topics, I want 
to say one last thing: it is extremely easy to set up your own e-mail 
group.  It's not even that hard to create a community blog (I've done 
a bunch of those, too).  If you find that the content is not narrowly 
focused enough for your own needs, you might find other like-minded 
individuals who are interested in only, for example, seeing rare and 
unusual bird reports and can easily create your own group that's 
limited in that specific fashion.  Our community is diverse and 
complex enough that there is room for both, even if I don't 
personally see the need.  Similarly, if I were to feel that VT bird 
became too limited in terms of what was and was not allowed in the 
group, I could easily set up my own more expansive group if I felt it 

This was my long-winded way of saying that Ernie doesn't owe any of 
us anything here. and that I respect whatever decisions he chooses to 
make with respect to the group.  If the group ever becomes something 
I truly don't want, I can always create my own and see what happens.

I've written considerably more than I intended to here.  This may, in 
fact, be the longest post I've ever sent here without any bird 
photos,  so I will mention that last week I -finally- got good looks 
at a green heron, something that usually happens far earlier in the 

Enjoy :)

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	We've heard that a million monkeys at a million
	keyboards could produce the Complete Works of
	Shakespeare; now, thanks to the Internet, we know
	this is not true.

			--Robert Wilensky