Author Topic: Is BOM melting down?  (Read 23807 times)

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Offline simson

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Is BOM melting down?
« on: March 04, 2016, 03:27:54 am »
Looking at the number of particpients and the number of votes I'm afraid they are getting down with every month. Why?
I know you have to have a subsciption of the magazin, but there are so many nice bows every month, to bad they don't take part.
Simon
Bavaria, Germany

Offline Josh B

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2016, 12:26:20 pm »
In a word...yes.  One of the very few disadvantages of this great and considerate community is that when something goes from being strong and vibrant to turning turtle, nobody wants to point out the elephant in the room that caused the problem for fear of offending someone.  In this case there are several elephants, all of whom have good reason for their decisions, actions or inactions that have led to this apathy that is killing the BOM.  I am not in a position that I can volunteer to help, so I am reluctant to start pointing out problems for that reason as well as not wanting to step on toes.  However, if we are to save a vital and uniquely PA feature that is not found anywhere else, somebody has to start the conversation.  Apathy always starts at the top and trickles down in one way or another.  Here are just a few elephants that I see. 
 
       1.  The decision to go subscription only to enter the BOM.  I know...I know, this has been discussed over and over.  I recognize a business's right to make such decisions and support that right.  However, now that a considerable amount of time has passed since that rules inception I would ask that PA take a look at the net effect of that decision and try to determine if the outcome of that decision was positive or negative.  Considering the low number of entries in the BOM contest, I can't see how the rule could have had a positive effect on subscription numbers in the long run.  It may even be having some negative effects as interest in the BOM contest wanes, maybe readership is suffering a similar demise.  I know it has with me.  I don't rush out to buy the newest copy off the rack anymore and my e-mag subscription wasn't renewed even though I paid for it.  So I didn't renew that this year.  Apathy

      2.  A side effect of problem one.  With the lower number of participants, the same few bowyers win the hat every contest.  This has led to folks believing that they don't have a chance, so why enter.  I'm not saying that the winning bowyers are not deserving of the honors, but every month I see dozens of bows that would give them a run for their money that aren't entered.  More apathy.

      3.  This is the tough one that I really don't want to point out.   Even though I consider the man that has had the reins for BOM for a long time a close personal friend despite never having met him in person, another problem that I see is the seemingly random manner in which the BOM is put up to vote on.  By that I mean the timing.  It used to be BOM was up for a vote within 2 or 3 days of the first of each month.  Now, it might be the middle of the month, the end of the month or skip a month altogether.  I realize that the skip a month/combination of months is usually due to lack of entries.  I also realize that the randomness is due to our amigo having a life outside PA.  I think everyone realizes that fact and understands.  I don't want to seem overly critical of a man that has put in a tremendous amount of effort into this contest and especially in to the excellent write ups for the winners.  Those write ups are something that I have really appreciated in the last few years.  For me, the lack of predictable timing has produced some apathy about voting.  Perhaps I am the only one that is effected by that.  I don't want to sound ungrateful for the effort or cause any hard feelings or regret, but it might be too much for one guy to handle alone.  It might just be a case of burn out.  In which case that would be entirely understandable.  Whatever the case,  some help or relief of the burden altogether might be needed.  Again I'm not in a position where I can help and that is regrettable. 

These are just a few things that I see contributing to the demise of the BOM.  I'm sure others have their own reasons or suspicions as to the cause, but these are what I see.  I really don't want to be the complainer/finger pointer that has no way of becoming part of the solution.  I'm just not wired that way.  At the risk of deeply offending someone that has dedicated much more than any of us can possibly imagine, I'm throwing this out there to get the conversation started.  If we don't identify the root cause(s) of the problem, there's simply no way to address them and save something vital and profound.   Josh

Offline PEARL DRUMS/PEARLY/PD/DRUMS

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2016, 12:39:12 pm »
I won several BOM and a BOY. I want to see others win them. 
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize we cannot eat money.

Offline simson

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2016, 01:21:57 pm »
Josh, thanks for your very detailed answer. And I'm with you in all three points you listed.
I have read your answer several times and come to the conclusion I'm probably one of the elephants you pointed at. If so, I apologize! I really want to help getting the BOM vital again. And seeing Pearlie's answer, I will also not participate the next time.
Thanks for pointing me on the right track again.
Simon
Bavaria, Germany

Offline Josh B

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2016, 01:39:50 pm »
Josh, thanks for your very detailed answer. And I'm with you in all three points you listed.
I have read your answer several times and come to the conclusion I'm probably one of the elephants you pointed at. If so, I apologize! I really want to help getting the BOM vital again. And seeing Pearlie's answer, I will also not participate the next time.
Thanks for pointing me on the right track again.

No sir!  That was not my point at all.  I would like to see more...much more entries, not discourage the faithful few.  Please continue to support the BOM.  I will endeavor to do a better job of the same.  Like Pearlie, I felt that I had already won my share of hats and only entered bows that I was sure had no chance of winning and even not posting  some bows at all that might have been contenders.  In hind sight, this did not help the situation but compound the problem.  Josh

Offline Aaron H

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2016, 01:42:22 pm »
Competing against the best makes us all better

Offline PEARL DRUMS/PEARLY/PD/DRUMS

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2016, 03:11:28 pm »
Simon my comment was aimed only at my personal feelings. I don't mind if you win 50 BOMS, you may have already :). I just started to feel like a BOM "hog", if you will. I stopped entering bows, which eventually evolved into not posting bows. I rarely post them complete anymore. Neither are good for the site. I should take the time to post them all and enter them all.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize we cannot eat money.

Offline Msturm

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2016, 04:56:31 am »
You get a hat if you win BOM? And your bow gets shown in the magazine right? Sounds like I need to make  a couple bows.  I could use a new hunting hat...

MSturm

Offline Del the cat

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2016, 05:10:30 am »
Well said Josh.. . you nailed it.
I for one didn't want to tread on toes and I have the general philosophy that if I'm not willing to step in and help then I should go along with the rules and keep my mouth shut! (A rare occurrence ;) )
The forum and BOM is a part of the whole and limiting BOM to subscribers is counter productive as it provides less material for the magazine.
I do try to support by voting for BOM even tho' I can't enter.
This is a superb forum and the only place where I'd ask advice and trust the answer, long may it continue.
Del
Health warning, these posts may contain traces of nut.

Offline mullet

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2016, 04:57:12 pm »
I agree with everything you said, Josh, and unfortunely I don't have the time to help out either with the traveling I do with work. And when did we start getting hat again?
Lakeland, Florida
 If you have to pull the trigger, is it really archery?

Offline Fred Arnold

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2016, 05:30:10 pm »
I neglect the BOM post more than I should. Unless one entry stands out hands down better than the others I may not even cast a vote because it seems unfair to vote for just one.

Also never entered a bow, main reason being I personally don't feel qualified to compete at my present level.

I will say that a lot of my inspiration and ideas come from the bowyers who participate on a regular basis. The bows are month after month some of the best I've seen anywhere. It would be a terrible shame not to be able to view the great work that is done here.

That being said, possibly I'll try to get more involved and may even enter one for a start. Even finishing last would no doubt be better than not entering the race.
I found many years ago that it is much easier and more rewarding working with those that don't know anything than those that know it all.

Offline Weylin

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2016, 07:30:59 pm »
Glad this is being talked about. I really enjoy the BOM. It created some extra motivation for me to put more effort into my bows. I have tried to submit my bows faithfully even if I knew there would be stiff competition. It's discouraging to see participation slide off and the pleasure of winning is certainly diminished by the lack of entries. I'd much rather lose 10 and win one with lots of great bows in the mix than to win 10 and lose one with only a couple of bows and a handful of votes.

I echo Del's sentiment of not complaining when I have little to add. I'm not in a position commit extra time to help out and I also really enjoy competing and feel that if I helped to organize then it wouldn't be right for me to enter.

We can't stop entering our bows or we are just driving the nails in the coffin of BOM. When I was just starting to make bows I would have never been very interested in entering BOM if I didn't see the best bowyers in the contest. I didn't care if I won or not but it was fun to see my bow up there with the other beautiful bows. If people are staying out of the contest because they are seeing Simon's awesome bows there every month then that is their problem, not Simon's. They should be stoked to go up against his bows, I know I am. We may not be able to change PA's mind about the subscription issue but we can put our energy into encouraging more submissions. I think if there was a concerted effort from the right people we could easily affect the numbers. I saw it happen a few months back when the Chris's got fired up about it. For one or two months we had a ton of bows and a ton of votes. We just have to sustain the energy for longer. I'm willing to do my part. I'll make sure to post on people's bows and encourage them to enter. The bow trades should help bolster the contest as well.
Swiftwood Bows

Offline derrick morgan

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2016, 12:24:37 pm »
I'm one of the newbies who ain't ever posted a bow yet but enjoy watching a lot!
it's sure hard for most to compete against the beauties that some of you "elephants" keep coming, but i think that if people like you simson, stop entering their work, that won't get the BOM nowhere, just makes it less interesting.
every time i see the new top notch bows it inspires me a lot for my own work. even though i won't ever reach a state to create such masterpieces, it's not at all discouraging - it awakens the appetite for carving!
i was just listening to a derrick morgan song when i registered. my name is stefan.
i live in tyrol/europe.

Offline simson

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2016, 02:06:59 pm »
Thank you all for your interesting input! This is a good thread.

Like Weylin I like the BOM and I'm with him, it adds extra motivation to take part. I was here often, maybe too often. I don't want to be a wall for anybody, but I will support the BOM nonetheless.

I think it is good to make a pause for some months. But I promise, I'm here every month to vote for the best!


@ Derrick: You are welcome!
Don't hesitate to post your bows. I have waited way too long chiming in and did my thing alone the hard way. Don't do it like me.
Here is a great community, in case of you need help - you will get it here.
Simon
Bavaria, Germany

Offline hammertime

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Re: Is BOM melting down?
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2016, 04:45:23 pm »
I would hate to see the BOM go away and when I first came upon this site(2006) I was just amazed at peoples bows and the talent on display. Yet in the same breath the same people to seem to win all the time and yes their  bows are awesome but someone who builds a great bow dose not have a chance competing with someone who is well known on the site or "part of the club"  I do appreciate the time that Cip and all others have put in but I think this is one reason folks are not posting. just my two cents-Hammertime