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Unfortunately, this forum seems...DEAD.

Discussion in 'General EDC Discussion' started by DCBman, Jan 19, 2022.

  1. adnj

    adnj Loaded Pockets

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    Info: Seventeen threads have new posts within the last 24 hours.



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  2. aicolainen

    aicolainen Loaded Pockets

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    I never intended to criticize the show and brag/tell threads, or the regular contributors there, but seems like the conversation is pulling in that direction.
    I was also new here (and to EDC in general) at some point, and those threads are important for inspiration and just getting a feel for what actually exists out there. I could never find the motivation to contribute in those threads on a regular basis, so hats off to those who do, regardless of where they find their motivation.
    My point is that a healthy internet forum can not sustain on that type of content alone, the SOME platforms does that stuff so much "better" ...well, efficient, rather.

    When I joined (5 years ago) there was still an interesting mix of in depth discussions and superficial picture threads. Sure, as a noob, the bar isn't set very high for a conversation to be described as in-depth, but I'm quite certain a lot of that has waned out in recent time.

    These days I pretty much know what I like, what I prefer and what I need. To improve on that is much harder, but with that confidence comes the risk of getting stuck in habits and overlooking improvements where they still can be made. In that situation there is absolutely no value for me in heading over to Instagram to see a dozen or even hundreds of others show off the same stuff, so I can get my confirmation bias. I want my ideas to be challenged, I want to come here and have someone hit me in the head with a shovel and tell me how narrow minded I am, and make a compelling argument as to why.
    And like @tera tike , though light years behind, my focus with regards to EDC items is slowly shifting from a consumerist approach to a creative approach. I try to only buy what I can't make myself, which is still a lot, but I will work to close that gap to the extent it's possible. Watching endless streams of people proudly posting their brand new, mostly unused, production item, yet their only achievement being that they were able spend money on a(nother) shiny object, does almost nothing to feed my appetite for information and knowledge. Not here. Not anywhere.

    Not throwing in the towel before I've done my part though. I'll make an effort to contribute more, but I'm not going to fabricate topics for the sake of post count. After the pandemic began to make a noticeable impact on my life, I've been very careful with how I spend my time. Keeping myself and my family healthy, fit and making sure my day job is profitable has been almost my sole priority for more than a year. Not much time to engage in long running in-depth forum threads and well documented DIY projects. Hopefully I'll soon find the time and energy for that type of stuff as well..
     
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  3. DCBman

    DCBman Loaded Pockets

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    And (unfortunately) probably half of those posts are on this thread.
     
  4. kukla

    kukla Loaded Pockets

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    Maybe we should have more latitude in what we discuss.
    Granted, politics and "the pandemic" are subjects that sometimes generate volatility but they're also key factors in all of our lives.
    Otherwise, we can limit our discussions to paracord and flashlights, but face it, other than the introduction of new products, those discussions
    just don't tend to progress very far anymore.
     
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  5. charlie fox

    charlie fox Loaded Pockets

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    Most specific forums have a finite life span. One can only post one's toys so much and there are many of us that have had to "pull in our horns" financially due to the current situation and can't afford too many changes anymore. I think areas of a forum that allow frank and open talk about current social/political topics are appropriate as long as they the expectations are laid out in advance and those expectations are rigorously enforced. That is where most forums fail - if allowed, an area to let people vent can devolve into a cesspool of personal attacks, insults and uncivility. Most administrators don't have the time to censor (bad word, I know) posts daily.

    I will say that, once upon a time, this forum attempted to be too strict and experienced a sort of "palace revolt" that led to many abandoning it and going elsewhere. I don't think it's ever fully recovered.
     
  6. demPho

    demPho Loaded Pockets

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    I felt this happening toward the beginning of the whole Covid thing. I attributed it to the newness of the situation and everybody’s focus being shifted to that, rightfully so at the time.

    I agree that some of the topics here have progressed as far as can be expected. But I have always valued this forum more so than any others because of the vibe and camaraderie that is apparent in this space.

    For me, I have staples of interest that last, and I also find new interests that tend to vacillate with time. A good majority of those interests are applicable here, while others have their own forums. I think the social element of edc stuff living more on platforms like Instagram is more indicative of the current social construct than it is of anything to do with this forum. We see this in most aspects of our culture in these days. The microwave culture. I don’t post any of the things I do on this forum on any other social media because I just don’t care for that type of interaction. I feel that the audience here is on a similar wavelength and has a similar depth of understanding and appreciation for these hobbies, and I feel safer sharing them here.

    I think this post is necessary and thoughtful, and maybe some of us can breathe some new life into this forum with this in mind. I am personally guilty of padding the Watcha Wearing thread lately, but that’s because it’s become one of those new interests. I’m also guilty of being so buried with work and personal projects that I have far less time than I’d prefer for engaging in edc philosophy discussions lately. I will say that those discussions and this platform are far less depressing than regular social media, the news or anything of the like. And that, I like.


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  7. DCBman

    DCBman Loaded Pockets

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    A couple thoughts on the subject at hand...

    1.) "EDC" - I remember the first EDC thread I saw in the interwebz (it wasn't here though). At the time I didn't really know what "EDC" was, but I can remember thinking to myself that it was a cross between 'Art' and 'Gadgetry'. And, I honestly think that's how "EDC" started out. I actually found EDCF while attempting to find out more about it. Few, at the time, knew what the acronym "EDC" even stood for, much less than it being a 'thing'. EDC was wildly popular and very trendy then...because not everyone did it (or even thought about it). Today, not so much.

    Since then I think the World has seen EDC traverse the entire trajectory of it being a unique thing. Now the term EDC is pretty much accepted into every day life as something everyone does to a certain degree. It's no longer a mystery. To this end, I think the forum needs to age with the times. The whole 'artsy' element of EDC is kind of tired. I think there would be more participation on the forum if discussions migrated away from the novelty of EDC (which isn't all that novel anymore) to more of a technical nature were products are discussed and evaluated on their engineering merits and technical make up as well as their performance and functionality. The "Look at Me!" aspect of EDC is old and dated. And candidly, it's pretty narcissistic too.

    2.) Today I think EDC is more about form-factor and function than it is about fancy brand identity. I personally believe that the fancy brand identity turns a lot of people off because they feel like they can't "play". I think there would be a lot more enthusiasm in discussions if they were more task oriented, rather than product oriented. In other words, ...'Here is the task I need to accomplish, and here are the tools I feel are best suited to accomplish this task. Obviously, EDC focuses heavily on portability and this is fine, but I think there would be a lot more participation if there were more context around the 'tool'. Just because something is expensive doesn't make it good. Likewise, just because something is not expensive doesn't make it crap. Again, it's all about the task/job at hand.

    I'm going to pick on a couple common EDC items here, watches and prybars (and also knives, but to a lesser extent). There will always be niche-collectors/enthusiasts of just about anything, and that's all fine and good. However, an Atwood tool is never going to replace a straight-up iron wrecking bar. Watches is another one. I love fine watches (and even collect a few, but rarely, if ever, post about them), and looking at a pretty watch is nice for a moment, but I'd always much rather read about or see a beat up Casio / Bulova / Seiko watch that has been drug through the depths of Hades and back again and still tells the accurate time. That, or read stories about how consistently accurate a budget watch is over say a bunch of endless pictures of several thousand dollar Breitling, Rolex (or other) which rarely see the light of day, and would never show up on a construction site or other dirty job. In other words, I think tools (EDC and other) which "Work" hard for their owners, day in and day out, rain or shine, would generate a lot more discussion than posts trying to one-up the last guy. Yeah, those posts generate some "likes", but that's about it, no real discussion.

    Just some thoughts.
     
    #27 DCBman, Jan 21, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2022
  8. Bad Company

    Bad Company Loaded Pockets

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    Perhaps the edc scene as a whole is stale.
    Just go on to CandlePowerForums. There are no new custom flashlight makers. They've all retired, or just disappeared. Custom pens seem bent on just making bolt action pens. Just examples.
     
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  9. gdwtvb

    gdwtvb Loaded Pockets

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    Years ago I used to haunt the candlepowerforums. Back when Peter Gransee and the Arc was the greatest thing since sliced bread. I still run into my old arc AAA every now and then...ahh good times. Back then, to get a bright LED flashlight you could build it yourself, get a custom/small shop one, or not have one. Today, even Ray-o-vac and Energizer have pretty decent LED lights available en mass at the local wally world. Right now for under $20 you can get an advertised 1300 lumen Energizer flashlight on big river. The modders and creaters can't compete with mass production. Why get a custom for 10X the price that barely does better than something readily available off the shelf? I visited those forums twice in the last ten years. Once when I decided to sell off my vintage Surefire lights, and again when I was searching for a light for my son. (He wanted a penlight, 2X AAA form factor. I wanted to find what was best.) I'm not a collector, I'm a user. I don't need an upgrade. It was an exciting time on the Candle Power forums when LED lights were new and it seemed like every other month lumen levels and runtimes doubled, now a 100 lumen single aaa keychain light is normal and honestly more than most anyone really needs from that form factor.

    Atwood pretty much brought the idea of mini prybars into the forefront of the EDC community. We pretty much all wanted one, and some of us even found them useful. (I used one for years when I worked in a warehouse, nowadays they are scattered about in pocket organizers unused.) Some people still collect Atwoods, but if you need a small prytool, there are a plethora of choices for under $10. How many in-depth conversations can you have about a 3 inch prybar? Hey I found a new use for my prybar, I can use it to open cans of paint! You never know when you will win the heart of a beautiful maiden by opening her paint can, better keep a prybar on your keychain at all times. The only differentiating factor is if they are prettier or rarer because of limited production.

    There was a time I lugged a 30 pound pack around everywhere. I still sometimes carry the micro grappling hook around, just because. I'm not trying to impress anyone anymore, except the fair maiden needing her can of paint opened. Now it's a wallet, one knife that might get used a single time in a day, a lighter just because, a cellphone, a pen, keys, and a bandanna. Even the flashlight isn't an EDC anymore, theres one on the cellphone and I'll know ahead of time, like camping, to carry a real flashlight if I'm likely to need it. I still like to see whats new, but other than expensive upgrades with minimal true improvement of utility, I'm covered.

    I think maybe most of the people that were more active on this forum might have grown beyond the heedless consumerism and now just check in from time to time to see if anything is new. And like me, have their needs figured out. I still lurk pretty often, but my needs seldom change and as I rarely purchase anything new, I have little to offer in the way of reviews. I have no great desire to post pics of my gear.

    I'm considering getting a new knife. I don't need a knife...God knows I don't need another knife. I just want one. If I wanted I could decide to buy some five or six hundred dollar instagram worthy blade, but I'll lilkely buy a Spyderco lil' Native slipjoint, because the idea of a modern slipjoint appeals to me. It should cut just as good and last just as long and I'll save about four hundred dollars. I don't know that I'll even bother to post in the "What have you got in the mail?" or "What knives do you have inbound?" threads. Again, I'm not looking to impress anyone, and I don't want to encourage the fallacy that happiness can be delivered via Fed-Ex.

    With so many ways to communicate, forums are less active than they used to be. Who even remembers computer bulletin boards? I'll be here 'til the end and turn the lights out when everyone else has gone home.

    Grizz
     
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  10. DCBman

    DCBman Loaded Pockets

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    @gdwtvb - You make a number of excellent points. Points similar to some of the same points I was trying to make earlier. I'd like to take a moment to highlight some of your snippets for clarity and possibly add a little commentary as well...
    '
    You said...

    "... Today, even Ray-o-vac and Energizer have pretty decent LED lights available en mass at the local wally world. Right now for under $20 you can get an advertised 1300 lumen Energizer flashlight on big river. The modders and creaters can't compete with mass production. Why get a custom for 10X the price that barely does better than something readily available off the shelf? ...
    Further to my point earlier about "EDC" becoming more mainstream today. People don't see "EDC" as some novelty niche any longer. It's just an 'every day' thing just about everyone does, but possibly without thinking about it like "EDC" as if it's some rare and exclusive society that only certain people know about or participate in.

    "Atwood pretty much brought the idea of mini prybars into the forefront of the EDC community. We pretty much all wanted one, and some of us even found them useful. ... How many in-depth conversations can you have about a 3 inch prybar? Hey I found a new use for my prybar, I can use it to open cans of paint! ..."
    Well, the whole Atwood craze never really interested me, and I never got, or wanted one. It was fairly obvious to me, early on, that the Atwood tool was nothing more than a very niche oriented tool designed expressly to keep prices elevated due to limited runs. You hit this nail squarly on the head! Homey never bought something because it was "cool", but rather only because it served a need and a purpose.

    "... I still sometimes carry the micro grappling hook around, just because. I'm not trying to impress anyone anymore, ..."
    Grappling hooks. I don't think anything screams "EDC Geek" quite the way a grappling hook does...with the possible exception of an Atwood tool! LOL! Regarding 'impressing others'; you've hit the nail on the head again. That's what the original generation of EDC was all about, impressing others. Today, that pursuit is wearing thin, particularly as it relates to something common which everyone does.

    "I think maybe most of the people that were more active on this forum might have grown beyond the heedless consumerism ... I have no great desire to post pics of my gear."
    That's exactly what it was too, heedless consumerism. People weren't buying things because they had a need, they were buying them because they could, and it 'looked' cool. Why else would someone arrange their (shiny unused) gear in some sexy pose and take an artsy picture to share with others? To me it was always about fulfilling a need, not about making myself feel cooler than someone else because I could buy some expensive brand named tool which I would never use but could point to on my keychain on the rare occasion that someone asked about some obscure device on a keychain.

    "... instagram worthy blade, ... I don't know that I'll even bother to post in the "What have you got in the mail?" or "What knives do you have inbound?" threads. Again, I'm not looking to impress anyone, and I don't want to encourage the fallacy that happiness can be delivered via Fed-Ex."
    Instagram **Sigh**. Who could possibly say more about pure unadulterated narcissism, ego and "Look at me!" on the interwebz than by uttering the word..."Instagram"??? Thankfully, yours truly will never have an Instagram account (FailBook, or any other self-adoration social media platform) geared solely to the whole "Look at Me!" culture that is modern times.

    "With so many ways to communicate, forums are less active than they used to be. ..."
    Of all the things you said, this particular statement is probably the single most important. Participation in virtually any other bulletin board forum these days is plagued by this issue. EDCF is not unique here. Forums in general have been struggling to keep up with the social media sites which don't make any bones about being solely about "ME". Why go to a specific forum when you can post about all manner of "ME", from what you ate for breakfast, to some specialized tool, than some of the powerhouse social media scourge? And, it all boils down to advertising sponsorship dollars to offset costs of operations, at the end of the day. I am actually surprised EDCF has lasted as long as it has in this regard, but I personally believe EDCF serves a larger purpose than just "ME", and this was what I was trying to hit at with my earlier suggestions. Forums have to change with the times. EDCF will never compete with FailBook, or Instagram (or any other heavy hitter like this). BUT...EDCF does serve a valuable need if it can manage to stay relevant. One of the ways to do this is to evolve the focus into more technical aspects of EDC, rather than ad-nauseum posts screaming..."Look at ME!" We really need to get past this!

    Overall, excellent post! You captured the very essence of why we need to embrace the original underpinnings of EDC, and that is "utility", not 'looking' cool!

    Well done!

    P.S. I love EDCF, and I very much want to see it live on. While some of the things I say may seem overly critical, they aren't really. They are intended to be constructive, and in hopes of logging into EDCF many years from now and still learning something as I always have here.
     
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  11. DCBman

    DCBman Loaded Pockets

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    Note - Sometimes I wish I could "like" a post more than once. The above post by @gdwtvb is one of those posts!
     
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  12. SwampDonkey

    SwampDonkey Loaded Pockets

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    Great discussion which was what DCB wanted. I will be more simple in my reply.

    - I seem to visit this forum and lurk and or add stuff now and then cyclically. The lack of activity definitely factored into how often I came back but as a whole, I agree, most forums are dying due to other means of engagement. I am a youtube junkie and learn more there than on forums.
    - Polarity in our society has created friction/risk in espousing opinion, openly displaying what you have and more.... which sucks. No one wants to get cancelled because they said what they believed, on their couch, in their castle whilst sipping on coffee or bourbon. The great reset can suck it as far as I am concerned, I'll die with my boots on.
    - One thing that kept me returning to this forum, besides being EDC focused, was the motley cool crew of regulars that participated and the well rounded approach to "man craft". Watches, blades, lights...etc. Just better more well rounded banter than a sole focus on one topic (ex: firearms or blades). I have gained knowledge from some of the threads here. That said, this is not a specialized forum that provides subject matter expertise on any one topic/brand/etc. When I do go to forums, sometimes that's what I need (ex: HK firearms date code formula).
    - Quality members exist here....it is self evident. I don't see a lot of tacticool larping faux operators/posers posting up, mainly common sense stuff. Renaissance men, this forum has them.

    Maybe the call to action is for us to preserve the good this forum provides and put a little more elbow grease into it????
     
  13. DCBman

    DCBman Loaded Pockets

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    BINGO!!

    (even simpler reply! LOL!)
     
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  14. J_C
    • In Omnia Paratus

    J_C Loaded Pockets

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    I still read regularly but don't often have anything to add to a discussion. It is a gear forum, with multiple sub-categories. I originally joined because I was looking for information about one particular category, and then over time looked around at the others. Some I became interested in, some did not apply to me.

    Eventually I had educated myself to an adequate level for my needs in the various categories I cared about, acquired those things I needed or wanted, and then I was done. The only category I got into collecting, rather than just filling a need, was pocket knives - in particular "traditional" folding slipjoint knives (Case, Queen, GEC, and others). I got over the collecting bug about 7 years ago, and have not bought any new pocket knives since then.

    Everything else - flashlights, multi-tools, pens and pencils, notebooks, components for a mini first aid kit, I learned about, got what I needed at the time, and still have those things. No need for more.

    I am getting old and my life has changed a lot in the last few years. My job does not require tools these days, and I work from home. I live in a city and don't need to worry about surviving in the wilderness. As retirement looms, I only spend money on things I actually need. I have not really bought any new stuff in years. I have all of the "EDC" stuff I will ever need.

    Most gear forums are all about buying (and showing off) the next new thing. When you are no longer buying, and I was never into the showing off aspect, there is just not a lot to talk about.

    I really only drop by out of habit, now.


    Edit: I realize I kind of echoed what many people expressed much more eloquently above. :) Well, I guess this is +1 to most of the above posts.
     
    #34 J_C, Jan 22, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2022
  15. 0dBm

    0dBm Loaded Pockets

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    Last edited by 0dBm, May 8, 2022
    #35 0dBm, Jan 23, 2022
    Last edited: May 8, 2022
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  16. SwampDonkey

    SwampDonkey Loaded Pockets

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    :censored:! Powerful honesty and appreciated but....I have to ask...what made you convert your approach in earnest? I have been a prepper/nerd/warrior/prior service/head on a swivel guy since a young man...and as the world has become more chaotic it has only served to reinforce the "see...I was right!" confidence in my mind to amp up EDC. Anything you would share as to your mindset?
     
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  17. Norseman

    Norseman Loaded Pockets

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    Sometimes newbies are intimidated to “look stupid” so they just lurk. And then the search function in these forums can be horrendous. Your search either returns hundreds of topics and you are overwhelmed or it says “no results” so you ask for the help you’re looking for and the more popular/active members jump all over you because that topic is old and been hashed out before.

    Also maybe since the economy is so stagnant people aren’t looking to buy new gear. I know for me when I start reading through the forums and discover some knife everyone likes or a Leatherman or some other kit that looks awesome I start watching YouTube reviews and then BOOM! I gotta have it and end up spending money. So with the market down, inflation on the rise and EDC items in demand - also contributing to rising costs of these types of items - I try and stay away just so I don’t end up spending money LOL


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  18. victograph

    victograph Loaded Pockets

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    I know a lot of this forum is a showcase for gear, and it can be intimidating. Sat down recently and looked at my gear, to get it in my head, yep that’s what you’ve got..Don’t worry about it, or all the other stuff. Get out enjoy your time and make the best of what you have. If it works great, if it doesn’t change it. If some one wants to know about it share your experience help them learn. Only took me the best part of 70 years to finally learn a lot of what my Dad kept trying to teach me. Very smart man.


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  19. victograph

    victograph Loaded Pockets

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    [​IMG]
    Still sorting, and following the forum. Still learning.


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  20. victograph

    victograph Loaded Pockets

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    It’s not dead, but I could use some help with cpr. New posts. Replies and shares.


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