BRF 15 years. let us look back.

RamaY
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby RamaY » 09 Feb 2015 05:39

KJo, MatrimC Garus...

Chillax Saars ... I lost few limbs, Chaddis and half of my brain with warnings and bans... 8) whatever of I remained is still allowed to read interesting discussions and to post.. For that I am thankful.

Mods are humans too and are doing their job... I am really impressed that they could find only a couple of dozen objectionable posts from 15k posts of mine ... That means they are doing an awesome job given their time...

That need not mean Mods cannot miss foundational aspect of our great nation or key socio/industrial/techno/political/economic trends especially given the fast changing and highly volatile geopolitical turmoil we live in...

Like I said somewhere, the general direction of this forum will move only as fast as the most ideological & stubborn poster against a given PoV. And we have many such posters.

That is the strength of this august forum. It makes others to validate their PoV from all possible angles; like how Pakis & west test the limits of secularism Hinduism of India.

BTW: I made quite a few wonderful friends on this forum. If one good friend is worth a life, BRF is worth many lives :)
Last edited by RamaY on 09 Feb 2015 23:30, edited 1 time in total.

sanjaykumar
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby sanjaykumar » 09 Feb 2015 06:00

Hehe...got banned by one Calvin for calling out the hypocrisy of certain righteous ideologies when BR Effers were prim and proper and bent on maintaining polite fictions.

Fabulous technology....like meeting under the village banyan tree whilst scattered across the globe.
I should try going without BRF and see if I am still master of my domain.

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 09 Feb 2015 07:06

RamaY wrote:That is the strength of this august forum.

:mrgreen: RamaY sAyebu gAru: Now you are descending into the Stygian depths of Athens and Vatican. august (from Augustus Caesar, I guess - please correct) and forum - of course the Roman forum.

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 09 Feb 2015 07:08

sanjaykumar ji: I used to love the posts from one Mohan Raju ji based in the cold country whose citizenry settled on their southern border. Still it is cold, eh?

KJo
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby KJo » 09 Feb 2015 07:19

My earliest memory goes back to Fall 1997. I was in Madarassa and in a crucial semester. My project team mate (was a good friend and still is) seemed to spend all his time working on a Navy website much to my annoyance instead of working on this Tcl Tk project of ours which was causing me a lot of stress. Then that Navy site was assimilated into what became Bharat Rakshak!

nandakumar
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby nandakumar » 09 Feb 2015 12:52

I stumbled upon BR in the course of researching for a topic I was working on, a long time back. A google search on the subject threw up a link to BR website ( Funny that in more recent times search rarely throws up BR links. But then strange are the ways of workings of Google search algorithms). Didn't register as a member for a long time. This was partly due to a strange mental block that led to me avoiding any web forum (BR is still the only forum I am registered with. I am certainly not adding to the valuation of Facebook and Twitter if private equity and the stock market continue to value them on number of users!). And the fact that there was an extremely limited range of subjects on which I can pretend to have any expertise was the other reason.
So naive was I about the internet that for a long time I thought that the writing style should mimic that of youngsters texting to one another on their phones where punctuation marks and capital letters are deemed relics of a Victorian era in communication. On my first post, had my ears pinned back for such impertinence by Dileep, who remined me that punctuation marks in English language were there for a purpose! So much so when I posted something about Mullaiperiyar dam controversy saying that had Devikulam taluk of Munnar District was atttached to Tamil Nadu, there would never have been a controversy in the later years, Dileep pointed out that geography dictated that it was attached to Kerala. I refrained from joining issue with him that the basis of State reorganisation in 1950, was linguistic and not geography. I was terrified. In later years, I became more comfortable with the idea that contribution to a discussion on any online forum need not be measured by the number of posts but that by even being a passive follower one adds value in some osmotic way.
BR has been professionally a very useful tool for me. I remember many years ago I was invited to give a lecture on recent trends in Indian Economy, to faculty of various universities gathered at the Annamalai University as part of a refresher course that the UGC had organised. I shamelessly lifted various news links in the thread on Indian manufacturing and built a coherent narrative on one aspect (manufacturing) of the Indian economy and held forth for nearly three hours. The lecture went down very well. Not just by the fact that i wasn't booed out of the class room but that many came forward to say that they found lot of interesting stuff in my presentation. So thank you BR. Hope to be around with you, for another 15 years.

Theo_Fidel
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Theo_Fidel » 09 Feb 2015 22:42

matrimc wrote:Right after that I had some threats too - a matchbook was placed in mailbox with only four burnt out match sticks - the flat kind- with one side painted black.

:eek: :eek: :eek:
Now I'm rethinking my involvement on this forum.
There are a few such crazies I have the misfortune of working with...

jamwal
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby jamwal » 09 Feb 2015 23:15

When I first found BRF, I was in Jammu on dial up connection. Even the home page took minutes to load up. Can't remember how I exactly found the website. Most likely it was searching for pictures of weapons which I didn't like very much because of intrusive watermarks. Then I found Shankar's scenarios and became a regular visitor, then a poster. Around that time, some paper or magazine had published a scenario about India attacking Pakistan in retaliation of some for terrorist attack. They had used "Resolute Sword" for Indian operation and "Resolute Shield" for Paki response.

This forum has done a lot to change me from an apologetic dhimmi to almost a pakka RSS wallah :D



Some time back, someone contacted me through my website's chat window and spent some time teaching me editing wikipedia. I strongly suspect that he was a BRF member, but never asked. I wonder who was he.

Frederic
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Frederic » 09 Feb 2015 23:18

Joined on 03 Dec 2008.

Was a lurker for several years before I started posting.

Afghanisthan - Great Game thread was truly an eye opener for me. From that point I got hooked and there was no going back.

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 09 Feb 2015 23:24

RamaY garu: I do not have a problem if i got a warning or a ban for crossing redlines. For example bad language or abuse which was the case just recently. It is more to do with a personal attack by a webmaster/mod. I could not put him on my ignore list at that time. I did the next best thing - I stopped posting. If he were not to be a Mod, he would have gone straight to my ignore list which was empty then. It is empty now as well.

Sometimes - heck most times - extreme views get weeded out. Some who hold bigoted views are prisoners of their own small rigid minds. They will be given as much space as they give others. IOW, none.
Last edited by Vayutuvan on 10 Feb 2015 07:35, edited 2 times in total.

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Feb 2015 00:08

Theo Saar: That was not the only incident that took place. Another time, one poster wanted a book which I found to be in our university library. By the way this was when I was under my real name. So I told him here on the forum that I would get it for him from the library. This was a book regarding Pakistan. So I checked the book from the library portal and went to the stacks to get it. This is one of the top three or four libraries in the US and the stacks are huge. Undergrads are no allowed into the stacks. Usually not too many people are in the stacks as different colleges have their libraries. Either the library staff can get the book for you or if you are in a hurry you can go int get it yourself. Since the circultaion desk people were busy and I had been to the stacks several times already, I decided to get it myself. When I got to the shelf of the call number, all the books in that shelf were on the ground in a heap. The stacks are usually quite empty at that time. I was scared sh*tl*ss. Nevertheless I rooted around a little bit in the pile and found the book I was after and almost ran out.

Yes there are some Pakistanis or people with agendas on this forum as is true with any other forum on the net.

My feeling is that as long as I was member of good standing at BRF, I was not threatened openly. Once Sri Arun_S ji, being a mod, made a personal attack on me, the Pakistani opposition felt it is OK to start their own intimidation.

Speaking for myself, I do not like to hide behind a pseudonym. I want to be open about my views, but I learnt a lesson the hard way that there are some people out there who, being drunk on power, want to bully others.

It is a truism that mods' actions of a forum have consequences for posters of the forum. It is especially so if the posters are posting under their real names. It is understandable that mods do not post under their real names.

Unfortunately that sets up an information asymmetry. Mods know - approximately - who the posters are yet the posters do not knowing who the mods are. That is the downside of a moderated forum.

Well, one has to live with it. It is not always fair. Not necessarily :eek:
Last edited by Vayutuvan on 10 Feb 2015 07:33, edited 1 time in total.

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Feb 2015 00:23

ldev ji: Since you were a mod at that time, you probably remember that shiv posted a bunch of photos with several Mods in the pictures. Those were taken down after somebody piped up and said that it is not a very smart thing to do. Believe it or not I can recognize both Shiv and Philip if I meet them. Some people have photographic memories.

Theo_Fidel
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Theo_Fidel » 10 Feb 2015 00:30

matrimc wrote:My feeling is that as long as I was member of good standing at BRF, I was not threatened openly. Once Arun_S, being a mod, made a personal attack on me, then the opposition felt it is OK to start intimidating me.

Even though I do not like to hide behind a pseudonym and open about my views, I learnt a lesson the hard way that there are crazys out there who want to bully others.


Wow! I for one am glad you are back, personally I would not have returned after such incidents.
Last edited by Theo_Fidel on 10 Feb 2015 02:27, edited 2 times in total.

KJo
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby KJo » 10 Feb 2015 00:30

matrimc, interesting and scary experiences. I was the openly Hindu Indian admin for an Afghan Discussion forum back in 2001 until 2006. Talk about risk! I signed up as a member because I found it right after 911 and thought that Afghans were like Pakis and wanted to check them out. I got the shock of my life reading how much they hated Pakis. The Afghan owner saw that I was a software guy asked me to help and gave me admin access :eek: . Then the owner because an Afghan minister and died after meeting Paki officials in Karachi. So I became the sole admin. There were some who hated me simply for being Hindu/non Afghan, but other Afghans friends shielded me from them. One fellow would threaten me on the forum but nothing more than that.

Once in 2002 I got yelled at by shiv (was he admin then?) and I was pissed. Then someone told me in the Chicago meet that he is 'x' years old which was about 15 to 20 years older than me and I was really surprised.

I have not had any run-ins with Arun_S that I remember. Matt T, yes, and I disliked is crude arrogant attitude. You can tell members to cool it politely like archan, ramana, suraj do. RB and Singha, you guys are new, still in period-e-honeymoon, the jury is still out :P

Overall, the current mods are doing a great job IMO.

I met Sunil Sainis (BRF owner?) who came from Toronto I think, to join our BR meet in Chicago in 2002. I didn't know who he was at that time ha!

I have always wondered how mods themselves get kicked out or leave. Do the mods have power struggles? Is there a Mod Mahdi?

VikramS
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby VikramS » 10 Feb 2015 02:22

Definitely here before Kargil...
Its been a long time. Learnt a lot about life & world here.
Sometimes wonder if ignorance was bliss.

Miss Sunil Sainis, Imtiaz Ahmed, of course Harry...

ldev
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby ldev » 10 Feb 2015 02:59

matrimc wrote:ldev ji: Since you were a mod at that time, you probably remember that shiv posted a bunch of photos with several Mods in the pictures. Those were taken down after somebody piped up and said that it is not a very smart thing to do. Believe it or not I can recognize both Shiv and Philip if I meet them. Some people have photographic memories.


:lol: I have never had the misfortune of being a BRF moderator!! But I do remember the incident of the photos of the meeting being posted and then taken down.....

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Feb 2015 03:01

KJo ji: No it was not a run in or anything like that with Sri Arun_S ji.

Another instance I remember is when he posted an article by some western arms control analyst in which one "Arun Vishwakarma" was quoted extensively. In his re-post of that article, Sri Arun_S ji highlighted in red every mention of the name "Arun Vishwakarma".
Last edited by Vayutuvan on 10 Feb 2015 06:07, edited 2 times in total.

Suraj
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Suraj » 10 Feb 2015 03:41

Posters are advised not to resort to assassinating the character of those who are not here or in a position to respond to you. This is a thread to reminisce about the past, but not a venue to take it out on everyone who did anything to you in the past.

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Feb 2015 03:53

Suraj ji:

So only one side of the story is allowed that a certain dude was humility personified? He personally attacked me and it is on record. I will edit all my posts that I can still edit to remove my commentary and leave in only the incidents I remember. I am sure these can be found in BRF backups.

In any case, how would one respond to personal attacks like race or SDREness or the way their parents, their height or lack thereoff, or hair color, shape of the nose rather than their views?

There is no defense against bigotry.

Suraj
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Suraj » 10 Feb 2015 04:07

matrimc: what he did may not be fair to you, but what you're doing isn't fair to him either. It's really not this forum's or thread's purpose to provide you the means to get your own back.

Most posters think moderation is about providing justice to individuals. It's not. Our priority is to calm down the debate and get it back on track. If someone gets caught in the crossfire, that's unfortunate. It's in posters' best interest to stay out of angry arguments. If you sought to have an angry emotional argument and yet be treated with complete fairness, I'm afraid you're seeking something that's never been on offer, at any time during the existence of these (or for that matter most other) forums.

If you seek to be a martyr to your personal cause, you're asking those who have no personal involvement in your tiff to give you the freedom to 'right it' the way you deem fit. We can't enable that, not because we're insensitive to your concerns, but you seek something that's never been on offer to anyone. Personal issues with others - especially those who aren't even here anymore - are best conducted offline.

During the process of moderating debate, threads get cleaned up, and then members are handled in a generally consistent but not perfect manner. I'm pretty sure I've had some posts of mine deleted or otherwise censured with no rhyme or reason, in my early days here.

No more on the matter here please.

Gus
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Gus » 10 Feb 2015 04:09

heh..people who joined a couple of years back would be VERY surprised if they were to look at brf of mid to upto late 2000s.

a good chunk would be banned too by mods of that time (both ex and current mods who are continuing..)

Vayutuvan
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Feb 2015 04:33

Suraj: fair enough. No more from me on this thread.

Supratik
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Supratik » 10 Feb 2015 11:12

@ldev


I used to post with my real name on the internet. Then I was threatened with expulsion and deportation by FOIL types. Also issues with people in my Institute some of whom came to know of my nationalist views and made life difficult.

Sridhar K
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Sridhar K » 10 Feb 2015 11:40

Joined in 2002, when I was in Toronto for an year and was active during those days. Used to participate a bit on the oil and gas thread with Peregerine and SSridhar. After that has been in lurk mode but not a day passes off without me reading BRF. Folks at my home always taunt me by asking if I am reading BRF when I ever I am in front of a PC and nowadays on smart phone.

Had attended three BRF meets i.e.
a) Toronto in 2002 where Spinster a.ka. John Umrao a.k.a stayed at my place overnight after the meet, cooked me some tomato bath and andhra style pappu). The other attendees were Akula mithaiwala a.k.a Rakesh Koshy, LDev and there was one more.
b) New York meet with Rudradev, Anantha and a few others in 2004/5
c) Chennai meet with Rajaram, SSridhar, Yogi_b right after the arihant launch and Gagan's coconut diagram.

abhischekcc
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby abhischekcc » 10 Feb 2015 12:27

I found BR on the FAS site (Federation of American Scientists) looking for info on Indian nuke/missile capabilities.

panduranghari
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby panduranghari » 12 Feb 2015 18:39

negi wrote:Secularism khatre mein hain types quit this forum some time back , allah ki kasam this has been a far better place since then, at least sophistry and hypocrisy meters have not been redlining these days.


Why did they leave? Not that I care, but curious. Where did they go? Its great to rile these people.

Amber G.
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Amber G. » 12 Feb 2015 22:44

One perspective on users name in brf -

I have been involved in forum type activity, probably longer than anyone here on brf. In 80's (1981 or so) there was a network (bitnet) where some university professors and students used and developed this type of activity. One company (and a few others but VERY few) used it internally (the user base grew to 50,000+ in those early days!!). Here the usernames were real names and people learned very fast that they have to be very careful in what they say ... just like they said/wrote/ in other type of media. Some times they did not realize the audience, but once they put something in email - it could and did travel much further than intended ... and some results were very serious (including getting fired or disciplined from their bosses).

About 10 years later I was also involved in a math type forum where, along with many teachers, many participants were younger school students but forum was open to all. Here the rules were - If you are an adult you can use your real name (first and last) and title but for minors - the policy was - First name or nickname only. This was important to protect the participants.

Here in Brf - there are many who use (or used) their real name, and I certainly respect their choice. But as many pointed out, results can be unnecessary unpleasant. Because the nature of the forum, where one need not watch every word for accuracy and political correctness, my advice is to use a nick name (specially do not advertise the last name, professional title etc - google removes any privacy ).

One still gets familiar with nick names, and discussions can still be useful. It at least makes a little harder for unsavory characters to target good people.

OTOH as most know, keep in mind using a nick-name really does not help to hide you. With IP tracking it is really trivial for people to know who you are. You must assume that there is no guarantee of privacy, so you should, as always be careful in what you post.

Just my thoughts.

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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby SBajwa » 13 Feb 2015 00:34

by Sridhar
a) Toronto in 2002 where Spinster a.ka. John Umrao a.k.a stayed at my place overnight after the meet, cooked me some tomato bath and andhra style pappu). The other attendees were Akula mithaiwala a.k.a Rakesh Koshy, LDev and there was one more.


If this was in an Indian restaurant then I was there too!! others I remember are JE menon, Koshy, Ramana, I forgot the name of the gentleman from Garhwal hills a professor at University of toronto. We were discussing Kargil, etc.

KJo
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby KJo » 13 Feb 2015 00:41

When I joined, I used my real name. It is still in the forum archives. :shock:
I think Matt or one of the admins banned me on that account and I was out for some time and then got back. I progressively shortened my nick into what I have today for privacy to the level possible.

Amberji is correct, one never knows who is reading. I wouldn't be surprised if the real person 'Kunal' was reading about the BRF character Kunal and wondering how the hell someone could be such an $%#$%
:eek:

abhischekcc
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby abhischekcc » 20 Feb 2015 14:53

panduranghari wrote:
negi wrote:Secularism khatre mein hain types quit this forum some time back , allah ki kasam this has been a far better place since then, at least sophistry and hypocrisy meters have not been redlining these days.


Why did they leave? Not that I care, but curious. Where did they go? Its great to rile these people.

I think they got tired of fighting a losing battle. I was one of the most voluble Hindu nationalists in the early days : 1999 and later. Got into major fights but somehow avoided a ban. :mrgreen:

I tend to tune off a thread whenever some emosunal nonsense starts there.

KJo
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby KJo » 20 Feb 2015 21:34

I was a big Congresswalla back in the day. Rajiv Gandhi supporter though it wanted after Narasimha Rao left PMship. Not a sickular, but a centrist. My other friend who was my madrassa mate and who introduced me to BRF, was a hard core BJP wala and we would have these heated discussions. Later on, as years passed, I became the hard core Hindoo nationalist extremist and he became more of a centrist (though not Congressi). :shock:

Allah works in myst-e-rious ways.

RoyG
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby RoyG » 20 Feb 2015 21:56

Ahh FAS. Does anyone remember when they concocted that stupid idea of India placing a nuke bum on PSLV and sending it to Massaland?

negi
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby negi » 20 Feb 2015 22:38

^ Well I am surprised that BRFites think it is an outrageous thought , bentagaan actually believes in such $hit.

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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Paul » 20 Feb 2015 22:55

There was a pompous person named prof raghu in the late 90s. I think I have been here for 17 yrs or more.

Vikas
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Vikas » 21 Feb 2015 00:14

How many of you have lost BRF Oldie status and had to go back to trenches to get some respect back in you post count. I was once wiped clean from 1500 posts to 0 due to some forum software upgrade.
Yes post count is like my-count-is-bigger-than-yours.

Shreeman
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Shreeman » 21 Feb 2015 00:42

The question no one wants to ask is why we (BRF) have lost the real experts, even the committed individuals who will routinely jhaadu-safai the main site.

Shiv has hinted at this. Those that know, now refrain from speaking on subjects where they are expert-e-note. Half for being discovered, half for facing the position-e-power brf resident experts. Anyone here for a decade will see subjects and debates go uncommented where you know insights are available with membets.

Except for the odd SNaik, a lot of hullaballoo is rehashing blog posts, from DDM that I wouldnt personally teach to read/write again if they lost their memory.

This lack of -- share what you know -- is the greatest danger going forward.


The other being the new great nature of social media --- talking over each other instead of talking to anyone.

Gus
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Gus » 21 Feb 2015 01:28

do post counts even matter? i don't even look at that.

brf used to be a place where a few experts posted a lot (relatively) and rest of us lurked. posts were also less. we had a 9 page limit on threads???

now we have more posts from more people, so S/N ratio will suffer. but people are graduating to become better postors as well..

when shiv took a voluntary break and came back, he said there are better forums out there. maybe for some things in some context.

but overall, brf remains the place to go for..whatever it is that we seek from here. for me, topmost is, there is no other place that filters news and gets you the essence without the spin. on this, brf is without any peers for indians.

JE Menon
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby JE Menon » 21 Feb 2015 18:53

Sandeep, I've never been to Toronto. I have unfortunately not had the pleasure of meeting you yet.
Have only been four mini-BRF meetings in nearly 20 years, in London (where I had the distinct pleasure of engaging with Peregrine), at the Bangalore Club as shiv's guest (merlin & nitin were there too), just outside Mumbai International Airport while in transit, and in Boston (where I met Rony and Negi over lunch)... The only admins I've met are Shiv (now ex admin) and Kapil.

Bade
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby Bade » 21 Feb 2015 18:59

Gus wrote:but overall, brf remains the place to go for..whatever it is that we seek from here. for me, topmost is, there is no other place that filters news and gets you the essence without the spin. on this, brf is without any peers for indians.


Unfortunately that is not true anymore. There is a lot of politically motivated BS posted nowadays but it has full approval. So no hope. I used to use BR as a source of news, not anymore.

RamaY
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Re: BRF 15 years. let us look back.

Postby RamaY » 21 Feb 2015 19:30

Bade wrote:Unfortunately that is not true anymore. There is a lot of politically motivated BS posted nowadays but it has full approval. So no hope. I used to use BR as a source of news, not anymore.

+1 Badeji,

I miss the golden era of UPA1 & UPA2 when the national governance, policy, defense and R&D Labs were free of politically motivated individuals, agendas and policies.

I go read First Post whenever I miss the pre-2014 style BR discussions on socio-economic-national security-political issues.

It's sad to see the blatant anti-national linkage between media, Babusom, corporates & politicians getting exposed in the public eye. It is permanently destroying the legitimacy of our apolitical and secular news sources & readership. Radia Media is much better than politically motivated BS posted nowadays with full approval of forum software.


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