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Difference between the Talk Baja forum and Facebook group?

  • Difference between the Talk Baja forum and Facebook group?

    Posted by McBaja on October 5, 2022 at 9:28 am

    Just curious as to why there is a very large Talk Baja discussion group on Facebook and also this smaller discussion forum? What’s the difference between the two other than one being on Facebook?

    trekker replied 1 month, 1 week ago 27 Members · 58 Replies
  • 58 Replies
  • offroadrage

    Member
    October 5, 2022 at 9:32 am

    For starters, not all of us use facebook.

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 6, 2022 at 12:29 pm

      Duh, of course. My common sense apparently west on vacation yesterday. 😜

  • boe4fun

    Member
    October 5, 2022 at 9:48 am

    Agree completely. I dropped out of Facebook months ago and it was a royal pain to do so. Albeit it seems that the Facebook group was much more active. I hope that this forum expands to a wider audience.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by  boe4fun.
    • BajaGringo

      Organizer
      October 5, 2022 at 7:43 pm

      Our discussion forum alone is getting a lot of drive by lurkers, now averaging over 3,000 unique viewers (not counting search engine bots) each and every day. It seems there are many just too shy yet to stick their toe in the water but we are seeing that slowly change.

      I suspect that in the coming months as we build up a bigger database of topics and more and more of those lurkers will begin to participate.

      The best way to entice them is to start more of your own Baja related topics…

    • AndyP

      Member
      October 6, 2022 at 7:27 am

      I like this forum format and chemistry and am inviting some of my friends to join. It really is up to us after all to build up the activity level here, not the forum admins.

    • miraflores

      Member
      October 9, 2022 at 6:22 pm

      I was on Face book to stay in contact with my grandchildren living in Colorado 10 years ago but now they have moved back and living close by me so I don’t use Face book very much now. I am a member on Talk Baja on Face Book but only read, never participated.

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 9, 2022 at 6:36 pm

      I don’t think Facebook is going away any time soon but the way we use it has definitely evolved. Part of that is because most today use FB exclusively on their phones I think and FB itself has changed too. A lot more ads now, more rules, fact-checkers, filtering our feeds and notifications, etc. I can see where people will simply decide they’ve had enough and give up on social media but still want to stay connected with Talk Baja, so I guess it makes a more sense from that perspective.

  • shark

    Member
    October 5, 2022 at 2:08 pm

    I don’t really know how any of this works but I had thought the facebook site would have been imported over here? was that ever a consideration?

    • BajaGringo

      Organizer
      October 5, 2022 at 7:45 pm

      That isn’t possible simply because I don’t have access to all the facebook databases, but I am not sure I would want to even if I did. This is a different format that I personally prefer and as we grow here, more and more will see the value including a percentage of the thousands of lurkers we see each and every day…

    • Volcan

      Member
      October 8, 2022 at 6:29 am

      All of the TalkBaja data on facebook would probably contain several TB of data and represents a gargantuan level task to attempt an import based on sheer volume of data alone, not to even mention other factors like attributing posts, comments and media to facebook members who aren’t members here, etc.

  • BajaGringo

    Organizer
    October 5, 2022 at 7:35 pm

    Thanks for the question @McBaja and it’s one I have been asked often via PM’s.

    My reasoning behind creating this forum was several-fold:

    1. Surveys say that somewhere between 30 to 50% of the general public either uses Facebook infrequently or not at all and I wanted to create a platform off of Facebook for folks to participate on the topic of Baja in a discussion forum format.

    2. We have benefited greatly from the Facebook platform over the years but I have no control over the way Zuckerberg chooses to to run it or much say (although they do ask our opinions from time to time) on changes forced down our throats over time.

    Facebook groups have changed dramatically since I first started on the platform nine years ago in terms of their policies, many of which now place unrealistic restrictions on how I can manage and operate the group.

    Many of our Facebook group users complain to me about different aspects of the management of the group on topics that I often have little say or control over, because of these new facebook policies.

    Because our Facebook community has grown so large, I felt an obligation to create an alternative – an offramp of sorts, for our Facebook members to migrate to if and when they do leave the platform out of frustration.

    3. This platform allows for – what I believe to be – much better, in depth discussions on topics instead of conversations flying down your screen as happens with Facebook.

    I welcome your questions, comments and feedback.

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 6, 2022 at 12:32 pm

      So you envision a time where possibly this website could become the central hub for TalkBaja?

      • BajaGringo

        Organizer
        October 8, 2022 at 9:25 am

        I do believe that this website will over time take on a much more predominant role in bringing in new members by building our database of information on Baja. How these new members will participate; be it here on our forum on talkbaja.com or migrate to our groups and pages on Facebook is something that I am watching closely and tracking to help me to continue to refine how this all works.

        • McBaja

          Member
          October 8, 2022 at 10:49 am

          I must admit that your approach is unique, at least to me.

          • maxmo

            Member
            October 9, 2022 at 6:12 pm

            When @BajaGringo first started branching off sub-groups, I thought he was crazy, believing it would dilute the interest in Talk Baja but in fact just the opposite happened.

            • miraflores

              Member
              October 9, 2022 at 6:24 pm

              Is there a list of all these other groups somewhere?

            • BajaGringo

              Organizer
              October 10, 2022 at 12:18 am

              I knew it was a risk when I started splitting off the other groups but it seemed the only way I could provide a way for our members to focus on a specific sub-topic such as road conditions, weather, border traffic, caravans, classified ads, etc.

              Facebook offers groups no way to effectively manage sub-topics other than hashtags which IMHO does not work as multiple hashtags could apply to the same topic and it does little to help filter the group’s feed.

              And when members get frustrated at seeing the same posts repeatedly (that don’t interest them), often rude comments follow which escalate and fighting soon follows, causing the group to break down.

              Facebook could easily solve this by simply providing group admins with a tool to create something like tabs or a submenu system to manage sub-topics where members could choose which tabs / sub-topics they wish to follow.

              In absence of that, the only solution I saw viable was to create a number of connected groups covering the most popular sub-topics. Those posts can be shared back and forth with the main group, based on urgency and interest and serve to keep all the groups connected together in the larger community we have built.

              • mx-rider

                Member
                October 11, 2022 at 5:54 am

                Judging by your growth and the size of the Talk Baja audience today, it was a smart move.

  • DuckDive

    Member
    October 6, 2022 at 8:26 am

    I have a facebook account but rarely access it anymore, mostly use IG. I recognize that the TalkBaja facebook group is probably the busiest of all the online discussion groups related to Baja and I feel confident that if something is going on down there that I need to know about in terms of affecting any travels plans, it will be a hot topic in the facebook group and and I trust that it will be shared here too where I feel more comfortable posting vs a really large group. And I suspect I am not alone in that feeling.

    • bajajeepers

      Member
      October 8, 2022 at 4:46 pm

      Nope, same here with me.

  • nashsimpson

    Member
    October 6, 2022 at 9:46 am

    I don’t like Facebook for the simple reason it’s just too much – checking into my activity feed updates I see a whole lot of things that I am supposed to see of which very little really interests me. Here I can participate in the discussions that interest me and ask to be updated by email of new responses on those that I want to keep on top of. And yes, I wish more lurkers would participate.

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 6, 2022 at 12:34 pm

      Your notifications feed is whatever Facebook wants for you to see. 😆

  • blitzer

    Member
    October 6, 2022 at 10:09 am

    I use facebook but mainly to keep up with friends and family who aren’t close by. The Talk Baja group on facebook has gotten so big it’s hard to follow some thread sometimes but I will give Ron credit for the way he manages to keep it civil and off of politics. So many groups and forums today have gotten ruined by fighting including one popular Baja forum where it seems like politics bleed into every single thread. I for one really appreciate this website.

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 6, 2022 at 12:36 pm

      You mean Bajanomad I presume?

      • blitzer

        Member
        October 9, 2022 at 7:02 pm

        Yes, Nomad was once a great resource but it degraded down into where it is mostly David Kier’s personal sandbox to push far right politics in a majority of the threads today. They may not start that way but they end there if the thread stays active long enough. Nomad stopped being a useful tool when the Forum owner let that happen.

        Another one was fulano’s forum. It started out pretty good when he just focused on posting translated news stories. But over time he allowed his sarcasm and personal views to seep into his news posts which became red meat for a few dozen trolls that joined and he encouraged. Some alleged that a lot of the trolls were fulano himself posting behind aliases / alter egos. Who knows and who cares. Over time the fulano forum went from being a good news source to just a webpage to bash anything Baja related where he would air his personal grievances with people. He was always trying to humiliate and dox anybody who disagreed with him and it really made him look narcissistic and childish.

        He lost me and most of his followers when he turned that corner and his forum didn’t last much longer. I heard his Facebook group followed a similar pattern and is gone too. Today it’s really easy to get the news from Mexico translated automatically, so he really lost his gimmick I think. It’s too bad because he started off initially with something that worked.

        • SolSeeker

          Member
          October 10, 2022 at 7:16 am

          I have seen bajanomad.com but don’t think I have ever been on the fulano forum.

          • LowCal

            Member
            October 11, 2022 at 9:33 am

            Nomad still has a some good info but you have to filter thru the old grumps, trolls and politics. Only visited Fulano’s blog once and it was just an online clubhouse for people who hate Baja and Mexico in general. <yawn> Never went back and didn’t even know it was taken down. No surprise.

            • screeski

              Member
              October 12, 2022 at 6:28 pm

              Fulano’s blog was an ugly mess. He had some useful info sometimes but it was all shrouded in hate and anger with some real nut jobs posting on there.

  • six-one-niner

    Member
    October 6, 2022 at 12:27 pm

    This is much easier to follow than Facebook.

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 6, 2022 at 12:37 pm

      Facebook seems to be making everything more difficult to do these days. I manage two different pages on Facebook and they have added so much BS and it’s all pushing you to advertise with them.

    • miraflores

      Member
      October 9, 2022 at 6:25 pm

      100% agree with you

  • BajaBundo

    Member
    October 7, 2022 at 7:16 am

    The biggest difference to me I suppose is that I compare it to being north and south of the border. Facebook reflects life in America today, it’s fast paced, high energy and full of people with short fuses where you have to think twice before saying anything in groups because someone is always ready to pounce.

    This forum reminds me of why I go to Baja to get away from all that. Just like life south of the border, it’s a bit slower paced so you can come back later in the day and not have to spend 20 minutes trying to find a topic that interested you in the morning. People here aren’t so quick to judge or jump on you for something you say and although I know there are different opinions here, we can actually have a civil conversation on topics, even when we disagree.

    • boe4fun

      Member
      October 7, 2022 at 8:51 am

      Well said!

    • mx-rider

      Member
      October 8, 2022 at 6:45 am

      X2

    • McBaja

      Member
      October 9, 2022 at 6:37 pm

      Good analogy.

    • Volcan

      Member
      October 17, 2022 at 7:44 pm

      I hadn’t thought of it that way, but you’re 100% right.

  • enchirito

    Member
    October 7, 2022 at 4:48 pm

    I love this forum Ron created for us off of Facebook and while I still use Facebook from time to time, jumping into discussions on social media these days is often a full-contact sport, something I try to avoid when possible.

    I admit that I am guilty of lurking more than participating but I do enjoy the discussions here.

  • mx-rider

    Member
    October 8, 2022 at 6:49 am

    I think we have different types of discussions here that are impossible to have on social media nowadays. I love it how we can have a thread on Chinese motorcycles without it crashing down into a fight on trade and politics. It would be great to see this forum grow but not sure I really want it to become a duplicate of the Facebook group.

    No offense intended @BajaGringo

    • BajaGringo

      Organizer
      October 8, 2022 at 9:34 am

      None taken. For what it’s worth, I really don’t want to duplicate it either…

      • MikeyD

        Member
        October 9, 2022 at 8:55 am

        😁 I for one appreciate the honest answer,

        • LowCal

          Member
          October 11, 2022 at 9:38 am

          I have been reading the posts here and finally joined today. What I like about this forum is the modern format where I can subscribe to only the topics I want to see, first I have seen that does that.

  • amandae

    Member
    October 8, 2022 at 9:33 am

    I visit a lot of online forums looking for info but don’t post too often for some of the same reasons shared by others here. This particular forum has been exceptional not only with all the useful info shared but avoiding so much of the mean and rude comments we see so much of online these days. I hope that doesn’t change as it grows.

    • bajajeepers

      Member
      October 8, 2022 at 4:47 pm

      It’s up to us to make sure it doesn’t.

      • miraflores

        Member
        October 9, 2022 at 6:28 pm

        Yes however one bad apple can do a lot of harm if not removed quick.

        • McBaja

          Member
          October 9, 2022 at 6:43 pm

          The moderation on Talk Baja is one of the things that makes it work in my opinion. I know there are some people out there who gripe about it but they are mostly the same people causing all the trouble. I for one appreciate it. I can think of a several Baja topic forums that let members post anything they want and they are either gone or lost most of their members with very limited activity today. Talk Baja is the only one that has thrived and continues to grow that I know of.

          • blitzer

            Member
            October 9, 2022 at 7:11 pm

            Some of the members who were banned from Talk Baja have even formed their own group where they can scream, rant and attack each other all they want with no moderation. I couldn’t think of a better place for them – LOL!

            • SolSeeker

              Member
              October 10, 2022 at 7:17 am

              😆

            • AndyP

              Member
              October 12, 2022 at 10:14 am

              They sound like small children throwing a temper tantrum

      • amandae

        Member
        October 10, 2022 at 8:23 am

        Very true and I promise to behave and bite my tongue when I have to. I hope everybody else makes an effort to do the same. It really isn’t that hard.

  • Wrench

    Member
    October 16, 2022 at 7:01 am

    I’m new here but it seems like this forum a lot less combative than the Facebook group, in fact most groups in general today on Facebook. I like it.

    • cabodream

      Member
      October 16, 2022 at 11:13 am

      Completely agree. And welcome!

      • Wrench

        Member
        October 17, 2022 at 6:05 pm

        Thanks. Was a lurker for several months and finally decided to join.

        • DuckDive

          Member
          October 18, 2022 at 8:07 am

          Welcome!

          • Wrench

            Member
            October 18, 2022 at 8:12 am

            Thanks, I’ll see if I can put some photos together to make a trip report for my last time down.

  • Coyote

    Member
    October 18, 2022 at 10:47 am

    It seems to me that Facebook groups are a good tool to find a quick answer to a question, for example if you break down in Guerrero Negro and need a lead on a good local mechanic.

    Forums are much better designed for longer discussions on topics that can take off in different directions like you would have with friends at a BBQ or just kicking back with a 12 pack of beer.

    There is a place for each platform and I like using them both, only you do have to have some thick skin at times on Facebook.

  • trekker

    Member
    October 24, 2022 at 7:15 pm

    I find myself only using Facebook on my phone and I at home after work I’m mostly on my iPad where I prefer this format and overall vibe. One is not necessarily better than the other, just different.

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