Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

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fountainhall
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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by fountainhall » Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:40 am

Gaybutton wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:30 am
How?
If had any clue I would have mentioned it long ago.

Going back to Dodger's point about farang not knowing about the three gay Thai chat rooms, I am certain the people he met are in the vast majority of expats here. For years I had a retired gay couple living next door to me. When I casually asked them the same question over drinks over evening, they told me they did not know such Boards exist! Besides, they are not interested in chatting or reading about other people's interests. They are very set in their ways. One visits Telephone Bar regularly to chat with friends. The other cruises in a popular shopping mall.

Of my various expat friends, not one ever looks at the chat rooms. Two are married to their Thai partners. They prefer to go out with groups of mutual Thai friends and frequent beer bars and non-sex clubs catering almost exclusively to Thais.

My only comment re a possible change is as mentioned in the last paragraph of my previous post - basically collating all information about specific gay issues and gay venues into a separate easily accessible thread.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by Gaybutton » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:12 pm

fountainhall wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:40 am
My only comment re a possible change is as mentioned in the last paragraph of my previous post - basically collating all information about specific gay issues and gay venues into a separate easily accessible thread.
If you're willing to do that, I'll be happy to accommodate the thread.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by windwalker » Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:17 am

Jun wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:22 am
windwalker wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:30 pm
Another reason may be "burn out" on the part of those running a forum. A great deal of effort must be exerted in running and maintaining a forum which could eventually lead the owner to quit?
From my limited observations, the only NET* reduction in the number of gay sites was when Ting Tong closed. In that case, the members drifted away long before the board was closed & one would presume almost no one posting would be a big factor in its closure.
[*I shall exclude bitch boards & a couple of short lived boards].
Undaunted raised the question as to why are Gay Message Dying; my reply was just to give an idea. I recall that Sawatdee Forum has had several "owners" over the past years beginning with Smiles. And there was Baht-Stop which also disappeared after two or so owners.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by Jun » Fri Jun 14, 2019 4:14 am

windwalker wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:17 am
I recall that Sawatdee Forum has had several "owners" over the past years beginning with Smiles. And there was Baht-Stop which also disappeared after two or so owners.
I forgot about Baht-stop, although wasn't that just one big bitching board ?

Luckily we do have 3 boards & as long as the management don't get run over by the proverbial bus, hopefully it will continue like that for a while.

The challenge is then to maintain or increase traffic levels.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by fountainhall » Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:25 am

I recall this topic being raised around 8–10 years ago on gaythailand. No doubt it's been raised elsewhere since then. It’s far from new and the posting base on all three Boards is now smaller.

It seems to me that finding new posters will be far from easy. As has been said by others, times have changed rapidly. In this mobile phone, faster-moving era, contributing to a chat room requires not only time, it surely also requires a degree of ‘ownership’. By that I mean a commitment to the objectives of the Board, a willingness to contribute and a desire to see it continue.

Pulling together the thoughts which have been expressed, these seem to be the possibilities for maintaining and increasing posting membership.

1. A reduction in general news items that are not specifically gay related.
2. More specifically gay-related topics particularly Thailand-related
3. Finding out why many thousands of gay expats in Thailand do not even know about the Boards and how they might be encouraged to become posters.
4. Is it desirable to try and encourage Asian gay tourists to become involved or is this to remain merely an expat/western visitor Board? If the former, how is it possible to make that happen?


Thoughts on the above.

1. One reason I enjoy posting on this Board is its openness to many general articles, Not because I wish to rehash what has appeared in the media. It’s more because I think gay people in general have a wide range of interests, including what is current in the news, travel reports particularly Asian travel, gay history, political events . . . and so on. As I mentioned in another post, ten years ago on gaythailand, the Beer Bar (dealing with non-gay non-Thailand general topics) was often the most contributed forum. As that Board has evolved, the Beer Bar is now much less important and the emphasis has shifted much more to reports of trip reports to gay venues in Bangkok and Pattaya by usually regular visitors. I just believe general topics are not a reason for a decline in either posters or readership.

2. I wish there were more posts on gay Thailand establishments and issues. But surely this depends on people being prepared to post - and to post in some detail. Had this Board been running between 10 and 25 years ago when gay sites were beginning to appear on the internet, I would have gladly written a vast amount. As a regular visitor and then resident, unashamedly I was a bar hopper, sauna visitor and loved gay massage. I think I was one of the first handful of visitors when Volt opened off Asoke. It was one of the first saunas in Bangkok. Same with Obelisks, the original Babylon and Chakran which in its early years I found the best of all.

In the 1990s V Club (in a separate building on Soi Aree and not its present location as part of the Chakran building) was a fabulous spa with masses of handsome masseuers, not a few of whom were models appearing in commercial advertisements or the various gay magazines which we could easily buy at the streetside stalls on Silom. I was at Albury literally on its opening day since I was staying with friends just around the corner. As I came to the end of my long week-end breaks from Hong Kong, I always visited one of the two massage spas on the fourth floor of Korea Town near the Sheraton Grande before getting a taxi out to Don Mueang. I loved Telephone Bar when it opened. It had several very handsome barmen, one of whom eventually ended up with me for several nights.

Even 5 – 7 years ago I was bar hopping. I remember and enjoyed the short-lived Heartbeat Club (what happened on the partly obscured banquettes was not dissimilar to what patrons could do in the relative dark on the long banquettes along two of the walls in the original Twilight sleaze Bar.) Super Lek had been a favourite for a while. After its demise Solid near Mango Tree took its place.

Now, though, times have changed and I have much less desire to hit the gay establishments. When off the leash, I find the offerings of Taipei and Tokyo much more interesting (novelty value? More than that, I believe). And I mention this only because they are two reasons why I do not post updates on what is going on in the gay scene in Bangkok.

My only other point here is that there is now vastly more basic gay Thailand information available with comments from patrons on a wide variety of internet sites.

3. This is a really tough one. Frankly, I don’t know. Best, therefore, I leave further discussion on this to others.

4. Another tough one. I mentioned before that there is, as far as I am aware, only one Asian contributing regularly to any of the Boards, Spoon from Malaysia on gaythailand. There have been others who have alleged they are young Asians but were/are obviously (through their postings) fakes who were/are clearly as old as the average poster and as Asian as a citizen of Kiwirrkura in Australia (population 216).

Two questions immediately arise. Would the current posting membership want an input from likely Asian visitors to Thailand? Secondly, is the existing format of give and take between western posters likely to be of interest to Asian visitors?

My answer to both is ‘no’ – even though I have before advocated this, and suggested that with Asians being the largest group of gay tourists of the future, the validity of any Board surely depends on some input from that group. The key problem as I see it is that the current format is not geared to gay Asians. As yet again mentioned before, Asian tourists are an even more mixed group than western tourists. Some like the bars. Most – for the present – prefer saunas, massage and dance clubs.

From chatting with friends in Taiwan and when I have had Asian visitors, what they want to know is pretty simple.

1. List of saunas, their location and facilities, the type and age of clientele.

2. Same with massage spas – traditional Thai, off-the-street offering no-sex massage, and full service massage. Especially they want some detail of individual masseurs and their massage skills. In the blowingwind Traveller’s Hut forum, the skills of the masseur is probably the most discussed issue. Oddly (at least I think so) they are less interested in the ending. A simple hand job is what most seek whereas many westerners look for more.

3. Discos like DJ Station along with description of facilities.

4. Bars which have shows, what the shows include and likely timings.

In other words, they want listings and some brief descriptions rather than general chit-chat. That raises a whole new topic that has again been discussed many times on all Boards. In a fluid situation, how does anyone draw up and maintain accurate maps and lists? No one, none of the free magazines which exist and used to exist, none of the several gay Asian travel websites have managed this. The one posted by Smiles here is the most accurate I have seen. But for how long will it remain current? Is the idea of maps therefore a dead duck?

Just some thoughts.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by fountainhall » Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:42 am

Gaybutton wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:12 pm
fountainhall wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:40 am
My only comment re a possible change is as mentioned in the last paragraph of my previous post - basically collating all information about specific gay issues and gay venues into a separate easily accessible thread.
If you're willing to do that, I'll be happy to accommodate the thread.
If other posters think this is a good idea, I am happy to give it a try. But I can only start after I return from a visit to Hong Kong at the end of this month.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by ก้นconnoisseur » Sun Jun 16, 2019 9:38 am

fountainhall wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:42 am
Gaybutton wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:12 pm
fountainhall wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:40 am
My only comment re a possible change is as mentioned in the last paragraph of my previous post - basically collating all information about specific gay issues and gay venues into a separate easily accessible thread.
If you're willing to do that, I'll be happy to accommodate the thread.
If other posters think this is a good idea, I am happy to give it a try. But I can only start after I return from a visit to Hong Kong at the end of this month.
I, for one, think it’s a good idea. Gets my vote if fountainhall is willing to make the effort and thanks to him if he does.

ก้นconnoisseur

Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by ก้นconnoisseur » Sun Jun 16, 2019 9:39 am

Back in the mid-late ‘90s when everything was new I belonged to a gay message board on AOL. It was a small community of posters who, more or less, regularly contributed. With them it was easy to develop online friendships. There were larger, more popular gay forums but we liked ours.

Then one day we were notified that our message board was being shut down within a month. I remember one of the posters I had befriended tell me in a pm that, even though we could all join and find each other on the larger board, he was sad because he considered our board like the corner store where everybody knew each other and had a comfortable environment. I find that’s true of the Gaybutton site and why I like it.

Gay Guides is mildly interesting but a lot of Bangkok threads I have no interest in. And how many detailed Trip Reports can you read right down to what color socks his guy wore?

I check these sites about once a week while I usually check Gaybutton daily. I don’t post very often either because I don’t have anything of value to contribute (Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something.), or just don’t have the time. I still work and have a full schedule. I visit Thailand twice a year and so many topics like retirement visas and medical insurance don’t affect me. Mostly I’m interested in things I can do when I am there for brief visits but I follow all the news because I have friends that live there and might be able to offer them information. It is helpful to know how long immigration lines are just before you arrive, who has had good experiences with limo companies, hotel experiences, what’s it like at the beach and the bars lately, etc. from posters who you know what their general outlook is from years of reading their input.

So I like Gaybutton the way it is lately and thanks to GB for providing it

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by Gaybutton » Sun Jun 16, 2019 10:13 am

ก้นconnoisseur wrote:
Sun Jun 16, 2019 9:39 am
So I like Gaybutton the way it is lately and thanks to GB for providing it
I appreciate that, but I do not want my board used to post remarks about other boards. I'm sorry, but I deleted that portion of your post.

Folks, if you have something negative to say or complaints about other boards and/or their members, please post on those boards or PM the board owner, but please don't bring complaints about other boards to this board.

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Re: Why Are Thailand's Gay Message Boards Dying?

Post by GWMinUS » Mon Jun 17, 2019 10:59 am

ceejay wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 2:48 pm
Few new members and membership ageing. Few young people use message boards. They use Facebook groups instead.
I agree, this is definitely the reason.
Younger people just communicate differently.
Using Facebook, Instagram, and (GOD HELPS US) Twitter.

But I am one of those OLD FELLOWS and I enjoy reading Long Trip Reports.
So I hope our Gay Boards continue for a few more years!!
Cheers
GWMinUS

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