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why is this site so often.....


in contrast to the last posting as to why lightstalkers isn’t running (and for the record in the time it’s been up it’s been much more reliable than unreliable) think about why it does function: because so many people work so many selfless hours in making it work. because of their success it’s now a site for thousands from all over the world, however to keep it available it now needs money. new servers, bandwidth are costly so, everyone, donate and keep this community working. (ironically enough when i wanted to write this post the site was down. in a way not a bad thing because in such moments it makes a person realise how important it is.) so instead of being petty little gregory fuming about the times when it’s down give at least 15 dollars so that those interruptions will be less frequent. or, if 15 doesn’t do it for you, give more, give less, but GIVE.


by [a former member] at 2006-08-05 19:29:32 UTC (ed. Mar 12 2008 ) nyc, the greatest rotten apple , United States | Bookmark | | Report spam→

:)))))) !!!!!

by [former member] | 06 Aug 2006 02:08 | Toronto (home sweet), Canada | | Report spam→
I’ll be happy to give, but first I’d like to get something. I just joined, and maybe I just joined at a bad time but nothing seems to work.

I can’t find any link on this site to groups, so I can check out what other people are interested in or find people who have similar interests. If there is such a link, it’s so well-hidden I can’t find it.

I can’t do a search for a person in specific location to find the person who first mentioned Lightstalkers to me, and the desire to look at this person’s work was why I joined in the first place.

I can’t do a search for a person by their name. When I do this, I get a “list” with nothing at all on it.

And what I suppose this means is that nobody can do a search for me, either. Or find me. Which seems to defeat the whole point of joining a site like this.

I also can’t find a link that puts me in touch with any sort of tech support, so sorry to vent in this forum. I’d really just like to be able to figure all this out without devoting multiple evenings to the task that could otherwise be apportioned to website development.


by Michelle Posey | 22 Aug 2006 01:08 | Little Rock, Arkansas, United States | | Report spam→
No group links as such exist, there never seemed a need for it, but you can begin to form your own group if you like. Post a thread, explain what you are looking for and see who bites.
Why you cannot search for a person I dont know. all you have to do is type the name in the Search field at the top right hand corner of the page. You will then be given a choice of where to search, so you click “members” on the menu. That should find the person, so long as you have spelled the name correctly. I fyou dont know the name, then you can search for people in the member directory link at the top left corner, but that particular search feature needs some ironing out, as it doesnt appear to be functioning very smoothly at the moment. We have so many members that I imagine it needs some tweaking.
There is no link for tech support. There is no team of experts running this thing like a web hosting outfit. This is not like any other site you will find, for good and for ill. Read the Manifesto (bottom left of page, link) and you will see what we are about. If you have a tech problem you can post a query as you have done, start a new thread, or PM Shinji Kuwayama who is the wizard behind this little OZ. But he is just one person doing a very big job. Let me bring you up to speed, history wise: LS started little over a year ago as an idea shared among a handful of people, including Shinji and Teru Kuwayama. When it began there was little demand on the software and hardware as we had a small core of pioneers running the thing, most of whom spend their time shooting or writing in odd dusty corners of the globe. Eventually the thing got hugely popular and they had to upgrade both the software and the hardware. Hence the call for donations, which are just a temporary means of getting some funds for immediate repairs. A new server is now up and the new software is running better than it was, but it needs tweaking. REmember there are 10,000 members, 75,000 photos, a million or more hits per month, etc etc. We are not Sportshooter, ASMP or any other such “professional” organ; we are an eclectic group of shooters, writers, editors, aid workers, soldiers, and other odd characters who are used to a good amount of chaos, unorthodoxy and improvisation. There are no rules — except maybe respect each other as much as possible — and you will find that threads meander, people say and write what they wish, no one monitors their output, no one censors them and no one governs what goes on. We are making it up as we go along, and that frees us for some surprises as well as some disappointments but the ride has been quite interesting.
As for searches and finding you, I dont know whether that is in fact the “whole point of joining a site like this.” But if for you it is, remember that each of us has a profile page with its own URL and you can link that to anything you wish and have people link to it, or view it, even if they are not members. I am always having editors look at my profile, they seem to find it easily enough even when I dont give them the addrss, but there is also a link from my website to LS and vice versa. If I type your name in the search field, I find you easily enough, so no worries.
And dont worry about donating either right away, See if you like the place, and then consider your options.

by Jon Anderson | 22 Aug 2006 02:08 | Bonao, Dominican Republic | | Report spam→
PS: you need to fix your link to your website. Always put the http before the www or you just get a weird configuration that reads, www.lightstalkers.org.www.yourURL.com like that.

by Jon Anderson | 22 Aug 2006 02:08 | Bonao, Dominican Republic | | Report spam→
IMO, it takes some real balls to complain about something that’s free. If someone gives me a sandwich, I don’t complain that it has mustard instead of mayo, or that the crust is a little stale. I eat the sandwich and thank the kind person who fed me when I was hungry.

Instead of just thinking about what you’re getting, give something, and then you’ll at least have a leg to stand on.

If you’ve ever got an assignment, sold a picture, found a great fixer, had a great discussion, learned something, or made a friend while surfing this site…pony up and give something back.

by [former member] | 22 Aug 2006 02:08 | Sacramento, United States | | Report spam→
Hey Max, I think Michelle is brand new to the site, only a day or so, so she hasnt had time to benefit from it yet in the ways you suggest, all of which are indeed regular advantages of being here. Particularly the friends and colleagues bit — in all the years prior to LS that I was shooting I was rarely aware of all the other people working on similar projects and now we can compare notes, provide help, and even work together, exhibit together (that has already happened here on LS a few times) and so on. But if she sticks around, she will figure it out. By the way, giving to the community has nothing to do with donating. Just participate. Your expertise, your advice, whatever you have to offer.

by Jon Anderson | 22 Aug 2006 02:08 | Bonao, Dominican Republic | | Report spam→
Hey Jon, I hope my post didn’t come across as singling out Michelle, because that was certainly not my intent. I was just expressing my feelings about the complaints that have regularly cropped up on the site over the past months. Hopefully folks who have reaped the advantages of this great resource will do something constructive to make it run better, smoother, and hopefully make Shinji’s life easier…instead of merely complaining about it.

by [former member] | 22 Aug 2006 03:08 | Sacramento, United States | | Report spam→
I understand Michelle’s legitimate concerns, since she’s a new arrival and has not been a beneficary of the history behind LS, its growth, development and all the extraordinary resources/opportunities it has afforded its members THROUGH OUT the world, nor should she feel compelled to donate. With time, she’ll see the benefits, so I understand her frustration and I do not think she should feel compelled to donate; infact, i feel that all members who have been here less than 2 months, should not feel compelled (although, i’d love it if they donated)

However, I feel that all the members who have haunted this place, allowed for its development, and have been members for at least 3 months or more (ok, 6 if need be) should donate something. To me, frankly, its shameful that so many members (still lurking and utilizing this site, even if they dont post or contribute, they’re reading, and swallowing information) have not taken the time to contribute. A single donation of $10 (or less) is an act of hugess in my book and even the donation of $1 is a gesture infinitely more singular than avoidance. It’s becoming a kvetch-filled hovel….however, that’s the nature of our bestiality: look at me, look at me, listen to me: …o, you need help?, from me?….

by [former member] | 22 Aug 2006 12:08 (ed. Aug 22 2006) | Toronto (home sweet), Canada | | Report spam→
Hey, everyone,

I was trying not to come accross as complaining, but I just was trying to figure out how things work and what I should be able to do and how to do it. I did come across the Manifesto, which is cool but not the same as a FAQ, so I felt my only recourse was to ask some questions.

I’m a donating sort of person; if I feel I’m getting something out of a group I want to give back. I do really want to understand what I’m doing, though. Jon, thanks for the heads-up on the URL; that’s just the kind of thing newbies like me need to know.

Also, what is the best way to be an active member of the site? Post on discussion boards? Link to other members? Form a group?



by Michelle Posey | 22 Aug 2006 14:08 | Little Rock, Arkansas, United States | | Report spam→
Kvetch, Kvetch. It’s a legitimate strategy that has worked for generations. The squeaky wheels ultimately get oiled.

I don’t think that it is unfair to expect those who can give something monetary to do so. Many in the community cannot easily give money, but information is also valuable. There was this radical German philosopher who once said “from each according to his abilities to each according to his needs.” While this proposition may not work in all settings, I suggest it provides some guidance in the LS community (yes, I know there will be those for whom this is a red flag).

Enough said this time…..

by [former member] | 22 Aug 2006 14:08 | Washington, DC, United States | | Report spam→
No worries Michelle, we understand. You will get used to the eccentricities of LS after a while, and either you will enjoy it or abhor it. some members have disappeared, but not too many, because if you participate the rewards are pretty big. I have connected with people all over the world, I have gotten assignments and sold photographs (though LS is not meant as a marketing tool, but still it does kind of function as your virtual rep or office), I have learned a heck of a lot about various digital tools, legal matters and other things about which I was pretty ignorant, and I get to use the board as a means of testing ideas, which for me is a very valuable aspect of LS. Just the ability to connect with people all round the world is in itself more than benefit enough to compensate for the oddities of various functions on this site. We all of us pretty much survive and prosper by making such connections.

As far as participating goes, as I said before, there arent any “groups” on here, though I think some of the women are gradually forming something, and there are members in various regions who arrange get togethers from time to time (the Belgians look to be having the most fun!), but feel free to create one if need be. Me, I tend to keep tabs on the Latin American photogs since that is where my interests lie in part, but there is no formal group, we just write in Spanish occasionally (so far we have had Japanese, Flemish, French, Spanish, Tagalog, and Russian conversations pop up from time to time). However, everyone pretty much just posts threads on whatever topic, though many are technical in orientation there is also a good bit of philosophizing (courtesy of Bob and me and a few others), discussions of the state of the industry, and logistical arranging, the last being perhaps one of the main purposes of the site as it was originally conceived. You need to get into Cuba, this is the place to figure out how to do so, that sort of thing.

by Jon Anderson | 22 Aug 2006 15:08 | Bonao, Dominican Republic | | Report spam→
LS seems just right for the kind of people who like to use manual settings on a $5000 fully automated digital camera (or a Leica), which is one reason it succeeds.

by David Gross | 24 Sep 2006 07:09 | Istanbul, Turkey | | Report spam→
david:??…u have to be joking, right?….LS is right for any photographer/writer/editor/pimp (mike the hack ;))) ) interested in the world and profession of photography: and has nothing to do with what or how or when or why they shoot….

…LS succeeds because (even through fighting) brings together the entire spectrum of people who tell stories by chasing down light (that’s documentaries, “art”, photojournalism, family albums, school projects, whatever….

and besides, the only thing i own that costs $5,000 might be (collectively) all my books ;)))….i shoot film and yea, i have a bunch of cameras, from toys to “professional” boxes, and none of it matters, which, to me….

yea, lots of folks squander their time chitchatting about leicas and new digital boxes and ok, so what, that’s part of the fog that surrounds this field/occupation/love, whatever…that’s cool for them, for me its immaterial….

i might add that I know there are “famous” members here and there are at least 2 members (its a secret) who are younger than 17, so, your constrictions dont seem to work, mate…

p.s.: david, your work is beautiful by the way! :)))))

its all good, and the house could use some dough as well! :)))


by [former member] | 24 Sep 2006 16:09 (ed. Sep 24 2006) | Toronto (home sweet), Canada | | Report spam→

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Michelle Posey, Photojournalist Michelle Posey
Little Rock, Arkansas , United States ( LIT )
Jon Anderson, Photographer & Writer Jon Anderson
Photographer & Writer
Ocala Florida , United States
David Gross, Photographer David Gross
Los Gatos , United States ( SJO )


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