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This site isn't the same as it was

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 

I had a lot of fun here, up until a year ago, maybe 18 months? This site has really changed. That's why I hardly ever come here any more.


Edited by OregonYeti - 12/17/11 at 11:19pm
post #2 of 45
Thread Starter 

I'm not sure what happened--either Nicko sold out, or changed his way of running the site, or is not really running the site. But anyway, that's why a lot of people have lost interest. I do wish Nicko well, as he made an awesome site where I could connect with great friends I met here.

 

Edit: my bad, I crossed out the parts that I can see are not true.


Edited by OregonYeti - 1/13/12 at 5:25pm
post #3 of 45

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion!

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply
post #4 of 45

No site stays the same. As new members come in and older members burn out, the tone and style shifts. It's part of what happens in an open active site.

 

Sure, people burn out on the topics that recur a lot, but you can and should start topics of interest to you. Help keep the site relevant to your interests.

 

The shift to Huddler instead of VB for operating the site brought some changes, true.

post #5 of 45

Sites change a lot.  I used to post a lot with Chef2Chef, but they went through some website changes and it died a slow, hard, agonizing death.  It was blamed on facebook and the new site changes.  Same with Webfoodpros about 5 years earlier.

 

I can't find any decent websites for chocolate/confectionary, which is what I do.  There are a few sites like 70%, but the traffic is sooooo slooooow, it's not even worth remembering the password anymore.

 

Then there's e-gullet of which to be a member you need to sign off your first born or make hefty donations.  I have never had any issues with my nationality (CDN) on C.T or any of the other sites, but boy, do I sure get it with the gullet.  Perhaps I should't have pointed out that certain states who pay sub-par minimum wage for servers is a lousy idea and needs to be changed....

 

So, Yeti, What kind of knives are the best ?  I mean, like, there's only a zillion brands of crap and only one right choice, right?  I drop fries down the frier at work, therfore I am a "Drop-chef" .  I am entitled to this title, I invented it , and I'll put it on wikipedia to make all legal like.  I am a professional chef, so how do I make chocoalte chip cookies covered in chocolate?  Why does the Chef get so mad when I check my f.b. status when I'm working? I mean c'mon, it's only for a second, or two...

 

Wishing you all 7 hrs of sleep every day for 2012,

Edward

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #6 of 45

Yeti, what about the site has changed that you don't like?  I have been around since the very beginning of Cheftalk and I have seen lots of changes, some for the good and some for the not so good.  I admit the move to Huddler was probably the biggest change to have taken place in many years and while there have been some down sides to that move there have also been a number of good things also.  The site will continue to evolve and change, hopefully for the better, but without knowing what bothers you about the way things are now, Nicko, the administrators and the moderators can't look into and discuss those issues.  And believe me we do discuss them.  Sometimes we can't bring about changes due to the way the system is set up, sometimes we decide not to make changes for "the good of the whole" and many other times we come up with a solution to the issues.  So, please voice what your issues and concerns are.

 

As Phatch said the other big change, that is happening all the time, is in the active membership here on the boards.  Having hung around for over 10 years I have seen lots of membership changes.  Sometimes I wish old members would come back and sometimes I wish some new members would just go away.  There are times when the boards, and membership gets kind of stale, times when I find myself not particularly liking the majority of members, sometimes when we all get along great and sometimes when it seems that the whole boards are tense and edgy.  And sometimes I find that I just need a break from the boards, what which time I might drop out for a few weeks and come back with a fresh perspective.  But I always come back because I truly feel like there is not another community like this anywhere else on the web.  Yes there are things about the site that frustrate me.  I don't care for all the changes that came with Huddler, I don't like everyone that is active in the forums, and I may not always agree with the way that Nicko has chosen to run the community, but for every con I can find about the site there are many, many pros, at least in my opinion.  If the pros don't outweigh the cons, for you, then I totally understand you wanting to leave and far be it from me to change your mind.  If you do decide to leave, I hope that you will, at least, check back occasionally as chances are that the site will go through changes again and you'll find that it has recaptured what drew you in, in the first place.

http://www.onceachef.com/ is my personal blog where I share many recipes, my passion for cooking, and all things food.
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http://www.onceachef.com/ is my personal blog where I share many recipes, my passion for cooking, and all things food.
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post #7 of 45

 

So this is a long post, go get a cup of coffee or wine and read on. biggrin.gif
 
You are absolutely correct Oregon the site is not the same. A little over two years ago we have changed the platform in the hopes of creating a more unified web site. As the guy who started ChefTalk I was really looking for one platform that could meet our current needs and grow with our future ones as well. 
 
We ended up choosing a platform called huddler and we were an "early adopter". Being an early adopter can have pluses and minuses and I think in the beginning we all felt there were a lot more minuses than pluses. From an administration perspective it was lot better in that everything is integrated, something we never had before. Now, when you are reading a forum thread about a certain topic you will see products and articles related. Things you may have not know were even on the site. This is a good thing because often we have really excellent articles on a certain topic as well as previous discussions.
 
Some negatives that came with the switch were nothing short of painful. Those being that the site performance suffered for a long time. We seem pretty stable now but I find the site is really at it's best if you are using an ad blocker. The ads definitely slow down the site and that is frustrating for everyone. In addition we had a massive load of spam the first year which I believe really overloaded and frustrated the moderating team and myself (something we did not deal with as much on our old platform. 
 
Another negative was the user experience and usability of the site was totally different from our previous platform. This sadly was one of the biggest minuses in my opinion because it caused us to lose many long time ChefTalk All Stars due to frustration. People like Momoreg, Michele B, Delta Doc, Cape Chef, Kyle W and many more moved on. This was a huge loss to our community.
 
However we have had some great things the past year things like Q&As with Steven Raichlen and Mario Batali (Steven was a better Q&A in my opinion but hey Mario B is Mario B). Great give aways with awesome prizes (knife sets, chef pak, wine chiller, books, cheftalk mugs etc). Admittedly the past 6 months we have not done much but that is mostly because of personal reasons. I simply have not had time to pursue contests, special guests etc etc. Hopefully we can get this going again.
 
Ultimately the state of the community is depend ant on "the community". We all need to chip in and help by helping find new special guests, coming up with contest ideas (and helping run them), prom toting good discussion, sharing knowledge with articles, photo galleries, product reviews. And I also think we as a community need to think about what is our mission statement. 
 
In the past ChefTalk was originally conceived by two chefs who wanted to share their extensive knowledge with other chefs and people who simply like to cook or want to cook more at home. Hence the tag line "A food lover's link to professional chefs". While I would like to keep this original idea at our core I have lately been thinking about how can we better define our mission statement. For many of we have literally talked about certain cooking and culinary school topics to death. And as a result I think there is a natural burn out rate among community members. 
 
I would like to hear from the community how we keep things interesting and lively here so that members don't burn out. So that community members feel like they are getting as much as they are putting into the community. 
 
My end point is this. Maybe it is time we change our tag line so it reads "Share what you know and help other grow". Personally, I would love to see more people sharing their knowledge and not just by way of discussion threads. Just the other day I spoke with someone who made their own chorizo and I thought "man why don't they post a how-to on the site for others to learn the tricks and pit falls?". Even I need to do this more. I make bacon all the time and should post a how-to on what I have learned over the past couple years. And, we are all cook equipment junkies so why are we not sharing reviews about the products here? Knives, cookware, etc.
 
So those are some of my thoughts. I would very much like to hear from the rest of the community on how we move forward and keep ChefTalk a great place for all.
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
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Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #8 of 45

nicko,

CT  seems to need a bit of a transfusion in regards to new forum ideas, imo of course... here's a few ideas..... one subject that seems forever popular when it comes up is bbq-grilling-smoking. didn't you just get a new smoker?  perhaps make it have broader appeal to include equipment, butchering, salami, sausage, chorizo making etc. 

i've mentioned this before but a forum place for those of us who tend to cook and live outside the lines and want to discuss 'other' current topical subjects and yes, even at times 'politics', to gather.......ok, that's all i know for now....enjoy your day and happy new year....

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #9 of 45

 

Firstly, I have just read your feature in which I have learnt a little more about the background of the community tool that you had started. Very informative and interesting.

 

1) There have been times, when I had pondered about a Travel Section ( or Epicurean Escapes ) which are travel related however, veered towards dining and / or where to go to dine. For example, my article on Bilbao or Sevilla, Spain. I also believe that by categorizing by Continent ( North America - The USA and Canada,  Central & South America, The Caribe, Europe, Asia, Australia & N.Z.) perhaps, those most interested in destination stated, would be more apt to read and respond to the articles they spent time reading. For example, I had a gent write me, very much interested in Barcelona as he has a dear friend travelling there for a Computer Convention. We have been in contact with a restaurant and market list, tapas bars and an English Bookshop too, plus what not to miss.  

 

2) Another point, for example, on Recipes: there is a lovely thread on Pears in Red Wine and all of a sudden, there is a fab recommendation for a BBC TV programme about a Chef from the Amalfi Coast working with Chef Jaime Oliver in London. This is great information however, shouldn´t  it go in a Food Related TV Programmes Category so all of us know about it, as it is a new series being broadcast across Europe and hopefully in the USA and of interest to those who could catch this programme as I had Saturday morning.

 

3) Another point of view is that, if a non professional has a background in professional areas and it is not too technical ( example commenting on fotos as I did by accident or a recipe that u know how to make and a Chef does Not ! ), why then, are we segregated from replying. I believe this Professional Category should be divided into 2 parts: One for highly technical only Professional Kitchen Matters and one for Professionals Open Category. I am a Licensed Sommelier and a Licensed Journalist. I grew up in a Trattoria and worked in one for 7 years ( 15 yrs old as the Hostess all the way through University and beyond not only as a Hostess, however, I ran the Front of the House and was bartender - sommelier too down the line ).

 

Thanks, for listening. Kind Regards.

Margcata ( Margaux Cintrano. )

 

 


Edited by margcata - 1/8/12 at 6:01am
post #10 of 45

nicko -

yup. the site has changed and yet it's pretty much the same.

there's this "professional" section which is randomly enforced.  
if you want a professional section, make it closed to the public and require prospective members to submit their credentials before giving them access to the professional section.

people who worked in a kitchen 40 years ago for 2-3 years and since pursued an unrelated profession are not "professional chefs" - regardless of how many thousand words they need to post a reply.

I was a busboy in high school; I'm drawing social security; am I qualified as a professional?
heh, wait!!  I also ran the dish rinser / washer.  that cans it.  I'm a pro.

then there's folks who were - 50 years ago - involved in the profession - now they have a computer and a lot of real outdated and quaint "memories" but still think they are "current"
the home cook is not interested in packer case quantities and negotiating brokered prices based on tons of chicken per quarter purchased.

who was the fellow who taught in Delaware? . . . had a "bash day" - gave the site info.  I'm about 1 hour from there - would have been happy to go support his efforts.  the site had not enough information for me to know when or where to show up; pm'd the "chef" - no response.

and when moderators decides to side with the "chef" who thinks mustard gas comes from canola oil plants . . . well, there's no defending that, at least for anyone who is actually professionally involved and has a brain.

 

the software . . yeah, has it's issues - all software does.  stop blaming the tools and reconsider the tool users.
it might be time for a major rethink and clean-up of the organization.

post #11 of 45
Thread Starter 

I guess for me, first the change of platform was frustrating. It's been a couple of years, so it's hard for me to say what in particular I liked better about the previous setup. And I can't say too much because I've never created a site like this.

 

Then came a whole lot of new members, some who care and some who don't really, and all the spam. IMO this site became too populated to retain the same character it had, which is not necessarily bad, but changes it. I know I'm new here compared to some, so I can't complain too much about newer immigrants :^)

 

Nicko, thank you for your response--I can see that you still care a lot. And I can see that others are here to build the site up as well as enjoy it--cool biggrin.gif

post #12 of 45

Hello OY - long time, no 'see'!

 

There are still a few of us, soldiering on here - and some of the new members have been very supportive and educational for the membership. 

post #13 of 45

Yeti

I agree with you, the site really isn't as fun as it used to be, but I keep coming back because occasionally I find some useful information and technical support. I also keep coming back because this site is the most varied and accessible. eGullet has become way too dense and hoity-toity-they should rename it eFoodSnob. Nicko has created something wonderful here and the moderators do a great job of keeping things from flaming out. 

 

And yet-

For me, the problem mainly stems from the handful of posters that must, absolutely MUST, post on almost EVERY thread to do one or both of two things:

1) Prove to everyone who bothers to read their long-winded posts that they know more than anybody else, and/or 

2) Ridicule whatever they deem beneath their superior (yet narrow-minded) point of view in some snarky manner that almost reaches cleverness, but not really.

 

My eyes glaze over every time I see another thread about knives (yawn), cupcakes (over), "I'm a new cook and the chef is killing my passion"! (sorry, that's life), home-based catering business and , well, I'm sure you catch my drift.

 

Still, I come back. I like this foodie home. It would be nice to have some new forums for food stylists and other food media professionals without the bombast of the self published. I think it would be a good thing to be a source information for those who would pursue non-foodservice culinary careers. A forum for professionals who cater to those with food related health issues might also be useful, but too many here tend to give short shrift to any conversation that veers in that direction-missed economic opportunity in my view. 

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

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www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

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post #14 of 45

HEY Nicko ... 

 

After reading this thread, anything that has ever bothered me is of absolutely NO importance anymore.

Thank you for doing what you do, and giving us this site. 

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

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"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

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post #15 of 45
Thread Starter 

I think there are great suggestions here for more attention to some arts that don't get much of it.

 

I also agree with the comments about overkill on some subjects, and those who think they are owed the status of "brilliant" even though they have just a year or two of experience and don't pay a lot of attention to what they are paid to do, and then those who seem to think their paycheck depends on how much they can look more right than anyone else on this site. These things are harder to control, and maybe more moderator intervention is needed? I'm all for that, even if some complain about it.

post #16 of 45
Thread Starter 

I just thought of something else ... although maybe this is not a new idea(?)

 

(..xxx..)

 

Edit: Someone pm'd me and this is not a new idea :)


Edited by OregonYeti - 1/13/12 at 6:10am
post #17 of 45

It's interesting to see that the site was created mainly for professionals to give advice to non-professionals.  A very generous thing.  Yet it seems that more often than not the posts are by people like me (who just cook a lot at home) and we are giving advice, and often arguing with the professionals!  (I am, I know - I hope not offensively)

I always hope i'm not one of the obnoxious posters that make everyone groan when they start writing  but i imagine that happens too sometimes because much of my knowledge is just self-taught and completely based on home experience. 

 

However, in many ways, while those with professional experience have taught me much here, there are many areas where the professional's knowledge and experience is not as relevant to a home cook.  In a professional kitchen there are a lot of people cleaning up and doing the chopping and peeling, so a recipe can be very time-consuming to reproduce at home.  Also there are questions of food safety that are important for a restaurant where you might get a client with a particular susceptibility to infection which is not the same in a home kitchen.  In baking i know from over 40 years of experience that the precision in measurement is not so relevant to the level that is necessary in a professional bakery, when you're dealing with kilos of flour rather than cups.  so there will be disputes on this. 

 

I like to hear from other home cooks and their first-hand experience and they've taught me a lot.  As have the professionals. 

 

So this is one thing i like about this forum, the interaction of home and professional cooks.

 

I'd be interested from oregonyeti just what it is that has changed. 

 

A suggestion might be that when someone is doing something outside the guidelines, rather than just block the post, to ask them to revise it and say why and how.  Some stuff will just have to be censored, but some can probably be part of a process of change, with specific feedback from the moderators.  

 

One thing i would LOVE to see this happen to is those threads that say something entirely generic like "help me with this" - if the poster got a message from a moderator saying "please change the subject line of your thread to be more specific - like 'i need help with broken hollandaise" it would be way better for us all!

 

And if someone said to me "your post is way too long, can you break it down" i would find it helpful. smile.gif (I know i'm wordy)

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #18 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by foodnfoto View Post

 

And yet-

For me, the problem mainly stems from the handful of posters that must, absolutely MUST, post on almost EVERY thread to do one or both of two things:

1) Prove to everyone who bothers to read their long-winded posts that they know more than anybody else, and/or 

2) Ridicule whatever they deem beneath their superior (yet narrow-minded) point of view in some snarky manner that almost reaches cleverness, but not really.

 

 


 

I will probably get flamed for this but here it goes.

 

If I am totally honest with you all I agree with the bold text above posted by foodnfoto. In fact I have found that I post less because I am tired of the posters who seem to over take every discussion. It just gets old.  Sadly, I also believe these posters have driven off great posters like Cape Chef in my opinion. 

 

 

Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #19 of 45

Got to say, I agree with you Nicko!

 

Perhaps we need to start to wield a big stick? biggrin.gif

post #20 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by foodnfoto View Post

. eGullet has become way too dense and hoity-toity-they should rename it eFoodSnob.

Ahh, but that's the fun of it. 

 

I relate my experiences from the owner's side of the cash register, and the resentment and contempt I get are thicker than cement.  The more I patiently explain and the more sense I make, the harder and off-beat other e-gulleter's argue.  It's almost as much fun as when the dog ate a half a box of latex gloves and left interesting messes behind for a week.  Invariably, the threads morph into politics and I get locked out.  Being a Canuck, I can't vote D or R--- which is probably even worse than making sense. 

 

But we don't have that here, so I do what I can.  C.T. is intersting and fun, but we need jerks and know-it-alls to make things a bit more interesting as well.  Everyone loves to hate a jerk.

 

Think I've been here since '06,  and probably will be here for a long time yet.

 

So.....what kind of knife is "the best"?

 

Ooops, I didn't say that, back to regular programming......

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #21 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:

 Invariably, the threads morph into politics and I get locked out. Being a Canuck, I can't vote D or R--- which is probably even worse than making sense. 

 

 

So.....what kind of knife is "the best"?.



lol.gif  Thanks ...

post #22 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicko View Post


 

I will probably get flamed for this but here it goes.

 

If I am totally honest with you all I agree with the bold text above posted by foodnfoto. In fact I have found that I post less because I am tired of the posters who seem to over take every discussion. It just gets old.  Sadly, I also believe these posters have driven off great posters like Cape Chef in my opinion. 

 


 

 


 

Dear Nicko,

 

You are right in your assessment, but just know I will always consider CT my friend & appreciate everything you have done.

Peace,

CC

Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
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Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
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post #23 of 45

Point taken, I'll try to be less vociferous in the future crazy.gif

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #24 of 45

The fact that these threads have been around for so long, many of the topics have been answered "ad nauseum."

Newbies don't always do a search before asking questions.

Agreed there are too many know-it-alls but they are always going to be around in any forum.

post #25 of 45

Pete M, I never took you to be one who spoke up in every thread. I could be wrong but I don't think so.

Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #26 of 45

No, Pete - you are not one of the 'know-alls'!!!!

post #27 of 45

Oddly enough, the people I think who comment on just about every thread have not commented on this one. Ironic.

Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #28 of 45

Ironic?

 

No, just an example of those who are clever in how they participate here!

post #29 of 45

OK then. I guess since I've already said something, that leaves me out. Swell. 

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

Reply

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

Reply
post #30 of 45

I have a pretty high post count, and I go back to the "old days". I was fortunate to be able to meet some of the members at a couple of Get Togethers (GTGs) in the past: Nicko and Colleen, Cape Chef, Momoreg, MBrown, Jim, Suzanne, Kuan and more. It was cool to be able to arrange to meet Kuan and his wonderful wife and son for dinner when I was at a convention near them. I buzzed down to Chicago to have dinner with Nicko and Suzanne when she was in town for a food writers' meeting. Nicko and Colleen met my husband and me for dinner a couple of times when they've visited Milwaukee. Those GTGs are priceless and were an important part of why I value the people and the site. I think having more GTGs would help build that for others, too. I know there were other GTGs- one in California, for example- and I think we're overdue for more. I may be traveling to the UK in the future, when a family member retires there part-time, and I'll hope to meet CT members who are nearby.

 

So how about a Midwestern U.S. get together? 

Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
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Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
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