Sweeping

Porch_broom

I’m going to open this by apologizing for not giving you something juicy and/or entertaining to read. To that end—sorry. What follows is the blogging equivalent of sweeping the porch, and while not sexy, there are a few points I do need to communicate to all you who are kind enough to drop by here.

First up: The RKP Store. Simply put, our store is down. Now for those of you who have clicked on the link only to be taken to a page with absolutely nothing on it, this isn’t what you’d call news. The reason I’m bringing it up here is that A) We are aware of it. And B) We have no clue (so far) why it isn’t working. My troubleshooting skills on this particular WordPress plug-in are as comical as an episode of Archer. Nevertheless, we are working have it back up ASAP. In the meantime, if there’s something you want, just drop us an email at: killerkit [at] redkiteprayer.com. I might add, it would help us all if you request something that we’ve sold in the past; that ’63 Jaguar you’ve had your eye on isn’t something we have in stock.

Next up: The Comments Section. This is probably a bit overdue. RKP’s readership has grown a good deal in the last year and we’ve had an occasional issue with things written in the comments. The biggest point I want to make is that the more civilized and cordial your comments are, the more likely others are to join in the conversation. We’re pleased that part of RKP’s reputation is based on the almost complete absence of idiocy in our comments section. That’s a testament to the intelligence of you lot rather than any sort of confirmation that we do good work. That said, even as our readership grows, we want to keep things that way. So, here are a few requests: Think of RKP’s Comments Section as a dinner party, an event at which polite engagement is the norm. I expect everyone present not to insult my family (contributors), friends (readers) or the food (posts). That’s not to say you can’t disagree; we just want the comments to remain civil and be constructive so that they drive the conversation forward, rather than shutting it down. Similarly, please contain your comments to the subject at hand. That also means that if we review a jersey from Company A, your review of a jersey from Company B isn’t an appropriate comment. We’ve had to clamp down on this especially hard because we have no way of knowing if said review is written by an employee of the manufacturer in question. Which brings me to my final point, which regards comment length: If you feel a need to review something yourself, or your comment is turning into a 500-word essay on the nature of man, we ask you to reconsider it. Brevity helps the conversation move. If your comment is more than a couple of hundred words, you might be in need of a blog of your own, or you might consider sending us a query. Robot got started with a query; think how much less interesting this site would be if he hadn’t. Just to reiterate: Feel free to disagree with us or with another reader; all we ask is that your comment be both civil and constructive.

Last up: Advertising. I’m in need of some advertising sales help. Our last hire didn’t work out. The position, based on our current needs, is part-time. There may come a point when the need will increase, but the amount of time this requires would allow someone a second gig. And while the gig is sales, the position is mostly relationship management. There are some introductions to be made, but there won’t be any cold-calling. Also, we pay a commission that is in-line with the rest of the publishing industry. Someone with a real work ethic could make good money. If you know someone who might be a fit, tell ‘em to drop us a note at: info [at] redkiteprayer.com.

As always, thanks for reading.

14 comments

  1. Chromatic Dramatic

    Re the comments… can you also look to moving to nested comments.

    Using your analogy of a dinner party, it is like everyone is talking at once (or at least taking it in turns) without reference to what anyone else has said. As such many things are repeated or not given the attention they deserve.

    Most other sites (with nested comments) I will go through the comments and see what things people are saying, and I find it helps expand on the topic. Here I don’t tend to bother as it is too hard to work out who is replying to who.

  2. Wsquared

    Padraig

    Just to be clear, are you requesting that we not make any references to products in the same category from other manufacturers if we comment on a review, or are you just asking us not to write lengthy counter reviews? Thanks!

  3. phillipivan

    One revision to RKP I would like to see is a more elegant means of browsing old articles. The respective “Read more posts from this category” links are not terribly efficient tools for looking up old RKP Articles”.

    The nested comments is also a good suggestion.

  4. scaredskinnydog

    A dinner party, SWEEEEEET! As usual I show up late, uninvited and smelling like whiskey. Hey Padraig you gonna eat your fat?
    Seriously, I’ll try not to be too big of a dufus when I post. Cheers!


    1. Author
      Padraig

      Everyone: Thanks for your comments, especially in light of the content of this post.

      Wsquared: Mentioning a product of the same type that you’ve used successfully is entirely appropriate. Case in point, I plan to check out the Arundel seat bag based on multiple suggestions when I reviewed a Lezyne seat bag. However, 1000 words telling RKP readers how I don’t know shinola about wheels and how the latest set of Ultratanium Zootrifics are literally the greatest wheels anyone has ever ridden and everything else is crap, well, that won’t work. That’s true even if your email address doesn’t end in @zootrific.com.

      Philipivan: Your point is taken. I’ve yet to find a WordPress plugin that does a good job. Honestly, what I do when I need to refer to old content (and this happens on a weekly basis) is to put in a search term and “red kite prayer” into Google. I have even found old comments I made. Google seems to be the best tool going currently.

      Shawn: Wilcockson was on holiday. We’ll be starting up again soon.

      Rich: Word. Our readers rock.

      A final note on nested comments. I have some concerns about implementing such a change because I’ve seen those nested comments devolve into a side conversation with no relation to the original post, civility or lack thereof aside.

  5. Mike

    “Next up: The Comments Section.” – Amen. And thank you for calling out the occasional douche for being being, well, the occasional douche.

    And +1 vote for nested comments please.

  6. Eto

    Patrick,

    Thank you for continuing to lead your ride. You are consistent with your high expectations of yourself (and family) and of us, your friends. I appreciate it.

    I enjoy writing the occasional response to a piece that inspires me. I really wish more readers would contribute. We know you have an intelligent readership. It would be great to hear from them.

    Keep up the pace!

  7. tinytim

    Yeah, the last thing we want is the comment section to become rowdy, drunk and out of hand. I mean, did you hear what that guy said about carbon clinchers?!!? Theres no way we can keep bashing the manufactures that bring us the over-priced crabon fibre breakable forks (see VeloNews write-up 1/25/13) or the sweet product testing or the training camp perks. I don’t think that the comment board is a place where egos are to be stroked 24/7 or where praise is given to every product reviewed. Conversely, the comment content shouldn’t be on the punk rock side of the spectum. From an outside perspective, the collective comment content has been really great in the past. There is no reason to come down on a comment that lies in the realm of cycling, yet deviates and is intangible to the article it addresses.


    1. Author
      Padraig

      Tinytim: The sarcasm that underlies many, if not most, of your comments is a great example of what we’re talking about. Criticism is fine, but it needs to be constructive.

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