Chase topic minefields

Sep 7, 2013
569
399
21
Strasburg, CO
Seems kind of odd, these conversations...are we supposed to be embarrassed to be chasers, to try to hide it like a functioning alcoholic?

Why can't we just enjoy this oddball past time without having to be scrutinized for how we go about it?

Maybe I should go buy 1000 watts of amber LEDs just to help pull the proverbial stick out of some people asses. Its supposed to be fun...if you're not having fun, stay home.
 
Jul 5, 2009
875
600
21
Newtown, Pennsylvania
Valid point. In that case, we need to add an entire volume associated with the science of meteorology, including topics such as
-what is a dryline
-what is a supercell
-why do supercells split/move right/move left
-what is a derecho
-why do tornadoes form
-what gives supercells rotation
-where can one typically find the dryline
-what does lapse rate have to do with forecasting severe weather
-what is pressure
-...
-...
-...

This list could go on for a few hundred entries.
This raises an interesting point. There are a lot of new threads started that pertain to topics that have already been discussed. But I think that reflects both the nature and the limitations of the discussion forum format.

It's the nature and purpose of this type of forum that people want to *discuss* something, so we are sometimes more inclined to start a conversation than to use this forum as a reference library.

Of course, it is also in fact an awesome reference library, but that's where the limitations of the forum format come in. Discussion forums are not, in my opinion, designed to be research applications. They are not created for ease of reference or to facilitate efficient searches. The information is organized but not really curated, which is not the same thing. This is especially true outside of the Target Area section, where there is less structure and a lot of overlap/redundancy of topics.

None of this is meant as a criticism of Stormtrack! It is just an inherent limitation of the discussion forum format. Again I think the main purpose is to *discuss*, and the new conversations often have a different angle/perspective/spin than existing threads. It's more like a magazine that revisits topics periodically, but each time there is a new flavor and voice to it, and it will grab the attention of new people that can contribute fresh thinking and the latest information.

I guess maybe I am off-topic now but that's how conversations go sometimes!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
 
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Jun 19, 2005
791
40
6
New Mexico
Valid point. In that case, we need to add an entire volume associated with the science of meteorology, including topics such as
-what is a dryline
-what is a supercell
-why do supercells split/move right/move left
-what is a derecho
-why do tornadoes form
-what gives supercells rotation
-where can one typically find the dryline
-what does lapse rate have to do with forecasting severe weather
-what is pressure
-...
-...
-...

This list could go on for a few hundred entries.
[sarcasm]
No these topics shouldn't be brought up either, they have already been discussed before as many have pointed out to newbies. Just search the archive, rehashing old topics serves no purpose.
[/sarcasm]
 
Nov 25, 2008
219
31
11
Dallas,TX
www.wxdallas.com
At the beginning of this thread was mentioned the list becoming a sticky or content in a new user email. Why not post the list in a FAQ along with links with each item that point toward some of the threads associated with that particular topic? That way new users could see for themselves what type of responses / answers their potential question could garner. A link to the FAQ could be included in a new user welcome email along with other helpful information about ST.
 

STexan

EF4
Feb 11, 2012
316
38
11
Athens, TX
Is there a place on stormtrack where general [and current] road information and cellular issues can be shared? For example today I was doing some running around in OK and found a few noteworthy issues for the upcoming 2015 spring season ...

For instance, on 3/23/15, I found that Wilburton, OK has ZERO Verizon network available and had to get halfway between Wilburton and McAlester before I got a signal again. Not sure if there was an upgrade going on or what that day or Verizon just has no carriers there. And furthermore, the Mcdonalds there in Wilburton has a very weak wifi (could not browse on it)

Also, Wainwright Road that runs e/w and connects US-69 to US 62 (S of Muskogee) has a lot of really bad pot holes as of 3/23/15. It's drivable but use caution especially at night. Pot holes are where your right side tires would be and are scattered about every mile or so, and all the way from 69 to 62 (about 10 miles)

Also the dirt roads in eastern/central OK are all mostly "dry" and easily passable for all, except some low-lying areas are still muddy -as of 3/23-

Anyway this is the type information I have to share today and was wondering if there was an area where this type of [current] info could be posted. Thanks
 
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Another one to add to that list, Dan.

A Storm Spotter, or Skywarn Magnet isn't going to deter law enforcement from harassing you. I'm sure there are a few LEO's out there that if they suspect you're storm chasing, they will harass you and a little Skywarn Magnet isn't going to help.
I've found that knowing some of the local cops, fire fighters and other officials helps. Having some sort of report and credentials comes in handy when you're on public roadways too. "But I'm filming stuff for science!" doesn't fly. LE will not care what you're objective is, if you're blocking traffic or causing problems; they'll either ticket you or tell you not to do whatever it is that you're doing. This happened to me a few times but most of the cops in my area know me, as do many fire fighters. They rarely are bothered by me because they know I'm not a mindless drone with a camera.
 

Steve McQueen

Enthusiast
Jul 20, 2015
1
1
0
Quincy, Illinois
I am new here and have to say that this appears to be a less than welcome environment. I may need to find a less uptight group of weather enthusiasts that still recognize that there is a 1st Amendment. Throughout my life I have run into people who have done something for a long time and don't want to give any ground to the new guy. That is the vibe I am getting.
 
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Dec 6, 2003
263
8
11
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
I am new here and have to say that this appears to be a less than welcome environment. I may need to find a less uptight group of weather enthusiasts that still recognize that there is a 1st Amendment. Throughout my life I have run into people who have done something for a long time and don't want to give any ground to the new guy. That is the vibe I am getting.
I have been on this forum forever. I don't believe it is unwelcoming. However, like all large communities, it certainly has it's routine and predictable sources of strife. It is a hobby full of some very passionate and opinionated people. The topics on this thread aren't any banned list of topics as much as simply a list of things that draw out the strong opinions from some people. I would encourage anybody new to stick around. This community would only benefit from new people.
 

Dan Robinson

Staff member
Jan 14, 2011
2,548
2,215
21
St. Louis
stormhighway.com
I don't understand the objections here. If you're a new chaser, don't you want to know what the controversial issues are before you make a fool of yourself as your first impression to the community?

If you do any of the things listed in the original post, you're going to be an object of scorn and ridicule to the entire chasing world, not just on Stormtrack. I thought some newer chasers might appreciate knowing about these so you don't have to learn it the hard way.
 

B. Dean Berry

Moderator
May 25, 2014
267
87
11
That's kind of funny, as I've been chasing since 1997. Since then, up to today, I have had rear-facing amber flashing lights on every vehicle I have chased with. I sometimes have a small Skywarn sticker. I have, at various times, had a weather station on my truck. I have been involved with a few local Skywarn teams, and even some Emergency Management Agencies with the aim of............protecting life and property. I have been involved in university met field studies which - shock - involved research and gathering data. I have *sold footage* which *monetized chasing* for me.

I should be the wide-spread subject of scorn and ridicule by those rules, and should have been for the past 18 years.

But I'm not. Most people have never heard of me, and most of those who have think I'm OK. I wouldn't know, because you almost never hear of someone by name in this hobby, unless you are a major problem or a living legend.

Dave Drummond, one of the (in my opinion) Living Legends of Storm Chasing (tm), is (or was?) on this forum, and he crosses a bunch of those hits off the list. People don't seem to think any less of him.

It comes down more, in my opinion, to your primary focus. If you have all that stuff, and your primary focus is indeed the weather, then you should be alright. If you have all that stuff, and your primary focus is looking cool and getting a TV show, well......you are either blackballed or you get a TV show - 50/50 shot.
 

Dan Robinson

Staff member
Jan 14, 2011
2,548
2,215
21
St. Louis
stormhighway.com
You guys are missing the point. Lightbars and flashing lights ARE controversial. Post a thread about it and see what happens. And I have amber strobes/reflectors in my rear window, and have for years. If you go overboard with those things, or run them full-time, or post a lightbar thread with shots of your blinding high-powered LED setups, don't expect praise and adoration.

If you don't care what anyone thinks, then do what you want. Just don't say no one ever warned you about what will happen.
 
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Apr 13, 2015
20
2
1
Dubuque, IA
Should just create a standing thread for each of the topics and let the debates roll on and let everyone get their gripes out in one area. 99% of chasers here and everywhere else are amateurs. Everyone does it for a different reason and with different level of skill. If anyone is making their full time living doing it, then they can be considered a pro. The chase community should really come together with some etiquette on how to responsibly chase. Nobody is really any more important than any other member of the general public out on the roads. It'd greatly improve the issues with law enforcement/emergency responders and the general public. I agree with the lights as a hot topic, there's no real need for them. I have had a surplus traffic advisor bar and strobing amber taillights on my car for 10 years. I think I've activated them twice in that many years chasing. One for a tree down over the crest of a hill at night and another for a flooded roadway during a storm. Standard 4 ways will do all you need 99% of the time. The rest is just wanting to feel more important.
 

B. Dean Berry

Moderator
May 25, 2014
267
87
11
Well, the question that hinges on this discussion is quite simple. Do you want to welcome more people into the hobby? Do you want to actually help mold new chasers?

OR

Are you a cantankerous old man who wants to stand in the front yard, waving a cane at "those damned kids" and chasing away anyone who threatens "your dominion"? Because if you want to do that, a Rotary Club or an ARES group may be more your speed.

In the days before the debut of The Great Internet Hate Machine, we let people make mistakes in a controlled fashion, so that they learned. They are called "teachable moments". We didn't light out after every slight perceived infraction with the goal of blackballing and driving someone away so thoroughly that their reputation is ruined forever.
 
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Jul 2, 2004
1,775
91
11
Hastings, Michigan
www.stormhorn.com
The original post reads, "I thought it might be beneficial for newer members to see a list of topics that are almost guaranteed to elicit a negative response on the forum and on social media. This isn't to discourage the discussion of these topics, just to prepare the poster for some of the responses. In other words, if you talk about doing any of these things, you need to expect criticism and have some thick skin in preparation."

That is not a condemnation of topics. It's just a heads-up from a veteran of this forum who has been through the flame wars, knows the turf, and wants to make newcomers aware of historically hot subjects. He wasn't judging anyone, not discouraging anyone from talking about whatever they want to (as he plainly states), just saying, "Know what you're getting into." And he's right. Over the years, I too have seen newcomers get their heads shot off over exactly the topics Dan has mentioned; not everyone here is gracious. The fact that this thread has devolved into a point of contention just underscores what Dan was getting at. Thankfully, and typically, the contentiousness here is balanced by other thoughtful comments that make for fruitful discussion, James Caruso's being one that struck me.
 
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Mike Marz

EF3
Mar 11, 2014
209
286
21
31
Minneapolis, Minnesota
I am new here and have to say that this appears to be a less than welcome environment. I may need to find a less uptight group of weather enthusiasts that still recognize that there is a 1st Amendment. Throughout my life I have run into people who have done something for a long time and don't want to give any ground to the new guy. That is the vibe I am getting.
This is such a false and broad brush statement about something that you admit you are new to. See some storms, post pictures and reports here, get involved in some discussions, have a few disagreements, it's a part of life. I think you'll learn that it is not as uptight of a place as you think. Don't run and become immediately offended, like everyone seems to do these days. I think if you were to simply get involved on this forum you would recognize that it is a fairly welcoming environment as long as you have some common sense.