Why is passing of potential company information in this forum so secretive?
For instance, "can someone tell me who has replacement sliding glass doors in the marin area?"
I noticed a post earlier where someone was apparently looking for a recommendation and everything had to be done via personal email? That seems to defeat the purpose of an open forum.
Can someone explain this concept to me? Why the cloak and dagger?
No cloak and dagger--nothing near as interesting as that ;-) just practicality.
You can probably appreciate running a website, producing the newsletters, and the various other "for free" services The Eichler Network makes available to the community is costing someone. Part of the costs are offset by companies who are screened and pay a fee for advertising on the site. Since those guys pay for the privilege that makes this forum available to you, it's not really kosher to be promoting other companies on the site.
That's not to say you can't promote favorite companies outside the forum--Eichler owners do share information amongst themselves on a regular basis. The site provides a great opportunity to connect and discuss. It's just out of respect for the host and sponsors of the site who make this forum available, that recommendations of non-site sponsors is done privately. And there isn't an issue with recommending a manufacturer or hardware chain--just service companies, I believe.
Of course, if you think a company would benefit from greater exposure and the eichler community could benefit from their services, this can be a win-win situation. Point them to Marty for information on becoming a site sponsor.
Does that help any?
rquinan: there are no secrets, just rules. If you go back and read the Chatterbox Ground Rules at the bottom of the entry page into the lounge, you'll notice item #3 asks that posters do not mention companies by name. This is because of all the service partner relationships established by the Eichler Network, which keep this publication going. It's there to prevent other service providers, who don't support the publication from posting free advertisements, which I would call spam.
Without the support of the EN's service partners, this forum would cease to exist.
Before we bow down too far to the Eichler Network, its worth noting that the cost of running a PHP based web forum are miniscule. For instance, EZboard will do all the work for you and charge $5 / month, and I believe the web hosting company I've been using will now do this for $10/year.
I've mused about this idea: Why not start up a competing Eichler board with no annoying restrictions? The biggest issue would be moderating. I think the initial thrill of being able to allow anyone to say whatever they want about whatever vendor they want (and we know some great ones we've been unable to mention) would quickly be displaced by the effort required to moderate the jerks.
I think your rebellious nature is compelling you to start a bootleg, unmonitered open forum Eichler chat room. I don't know how long it will last, but it would be fun to see where it goes
To any one else wondering why there are restrictions,
It is easy to drive from the back seat. I have personally witnessed the amount of B.S. the publisher of this site and newsletters has to deal with on a daily basis, and trust me he can have it.
It is more than a full time job managing all this stuff. It goes beyond just running a web site. There are writers to pay and edit, cracking the whip all interested parties, screening and staying on top of the companies that
advertise on this site and in the newsletters and so on. Not to mention postage, printing costs, paying IT to service the site.
The Eichler Network is also dedicated to preservation of the X-100. The owners have just finished phase 1 of restoration (in which, I ran the project and performed some of the work), and trust me, the publisher and his partners are digging way deep in to their pockets to restore this house and preserve it. They hosted an open house so all the people in the neighborhood could tour the house, and people came from all over the West Coast to see it. They put a lot of time, effort, and money in to this simply to share it with everyone else to enjoy this piece of Architectural history. In my opinion, that was done out of an honest concern.
This network is certainly a biz; last time I checked, the bay area is still among one of the most expensive places to live in the country.
If you know of any indepdently wealthy tech savvy Eichler enthusiasts that are willing to put about 50-60 hours a week into running a comparable organization, let me know.