5+ Year Member
10+ Year Member
Hall of Fame Inductee: January 10th, 2012
Hall of Fame Inductee: January 10th, 2012
The current moderators staff of ClubCivic.com are honored to announce that Anfrey will be the first inductee into the ClubCivic Hall of Fame. The decision was made by a vote of at least 75% approval by the current staff, which includes:
I had the pleasure of interviewing Anfrey about his time on ClubCivic. The interview follows:
Joe7987: Do you remember what first brought you to ClubCivic?
Anfrey: well, let's start from the beginning. as many of you know, i was born and raised in chile. after graduating high school, i moved to the us to pursue my higher education, mostly because i was interested in a career in it and the it industry in the us was booming at the time (this was the late 90s - remember the dot com bubble?). anyway, about a year after moving to indiana, i bought my first civic, an fbp ej6. the bmv (for some odd reason, it's bureau instead of department here in the hoosierland) was even nice enough to issue me a cool plate: 76K666 - perfect for a flamenco black pearl car, right?
so i had pretty much just moved to a town in another country, overseas, 5200 miles away from home. i was on my own and a novice to the world of automobiles and motorsports, lacking much of the knowledge many of us take for granted these days. sure, i had driven plenty of cars by then and was already good at driving stick shift (due to just most cars in chile being manual rather than autotragic), but i lacked the technical and mechanical know-how. to tell you the truth, i barely knew anything at all! in fact, my automotive knowledge was limited to how to drive a car, basic automotive mechanical knowledge (it's required for the driver's license exam in chile) and performing very basic maintenance (oil changes, battery refills, brake pads, etc.). anyway, things started changing around that time. i was making friends with people who had a decent degree of experience with cars (much like you or me these days) and i had a car i felt engaged with, interested in its care and performance. maybe it's because it was my first 'all mine' car, or maybe i had been just driving boring cars all along. the latter wouldn't surprise me, considering the cars i had driven by then were a nissan bluebird, a ford taurus, a ford explorer, a vw kombi bus, a citroen c15e, and an automatic db teg.
well, it was this newfound interest in all things automotive that led me on a quest for knowledge, and what better way to find it than the internet? that's when i discovered most of the automotive knowledge base was amassed in forums. the first one i found was automotiveforums, which catered to all kinds of automotive topics and was so broad most popular makes were included. this was quite daunting for me, so i tried to see if there were more specialized forums. that's when i discovered a forum called superhonda (a.k.a. sho), where i gained a good bit of knowledge over the next couple of years. there were good people there and i even drove three hours (each way) for a small meet once. anyway, there was a point where sho started getting bigger and the sense of community was getting lost. people started getting large egos and i lost interest in that site.
that's when i discovered clubcivic. it was a small, new, fledgling community back then. i think around the time i joined, clubcivic had only been around for nine or ten months. i made a few posts, started getting to know the members and really liked the feeling i got from the forum. i became good friends with a trio of dudes from stockton, california (of which only one is still on cc), as well as everyone else. people were having meets, everyone was friendly and pleasant, and there was an overall feeling of friendship and respect amongst everyone, something that had been missing from sho.
tl;dr - bs on the other honda forum i was on leads to me finding this small friendly community.
Joe7987: What made you stay?
Anfrey: first of all, friendship. everyone was so kind and courteous from day one that it would've been hard not being friends with these people. it was nice to feel welcome and open. my other reason were all the new members to the site, many who were in a position similar to where i was a few years prior. there were many people with questions about their civics, about modifications, and about general auto mechanics as well, and i wanted to help them get their answers without all the hassle i had to go through (such as reading through page after page of pointless discussion to get an actual technical answer). i made it a point to try to answer every question i had to knowledge or experience to answer. as for those questions i was miffed about, i would use them as stepping stones to further my automotive research and learn more. eventually, i'd be able to return to the original poster with a helpful answer or suggestions. clubcivic was a small developing community and i was glad to be able to lend a hand.
td;dr - friendship and wanting to help others with their car questions
Joe7987: You've been a member for almost 9 years now. How has the site changed over the years?
Anfrey: oh boy. clubcivic has changed since the early twenty aughts, more in regard to social interaction than site design or layout (which has evolved quite a bit in the past decade). i distinctly remember the first social issue the forum had. as i mentioned earlier, everyone on clubcivic was very kind and courteous. in fact, flaming and trolling were highly looked down upon. just about everyone would see someone acting like a childish ass as exactly that. however, as the internet got more accessible to everyone and the average maturity level decreased, things started getting out of hand. i blame the social direction this society has taken, such as the wide acceptance of calling things and situations 'gay' with negative connotations.. but that's another discussion entirely. it felt like the selfishness and stupidity from the rest of the internet was seeping into our temple. well, to make things short, campaigns were had, concessions were made, and a general set of etiquette guidelines was finally drawn. we purposely called them guidelines since 'rules are meant to be broken.' while these guidelines have changed a bit and been updated as new situations and circumstances arise, i believe the current set of clubcivic guidelines is still based on our original draft.
anyway, not all changes on the site have been so dramatic. i mean, it's a forum, not a nation, right? i've seen a lot of trends come and go (and some that come back years later) and i think they've all made the community closer and tighter. things like putting santa hats on our avatars during december, replicating our cars as mangacars, photoshop contests, photography contests, sig creation services, post whoring competitions (i think i had over 37,000 posts at some time), tech sticky threads, the temp incident, the rise of regional subforums, and, of course, our vip lounge shenanigans (remember the pic request thread?), to name a few. the site certainly has gotten a lot bigger in the past few years and people have come and gone. many of them i'm still friends with, even if they no longer frequent the forum. there are many members who are not only willing, but glad to drive hours out of state to help other members out. hell, some of us will do that just to say hi and visit for a few days. i feel the sense of community here is still strong. that's one of the things that certianly hasn't changed over the years. the comradery and fellowship is still there, and, imho, that's the heart and soul of clubcivic.
tl;dr - it's adapted to the times, but we're still a tight-knit community
Joe7987: At one point, you were a moderator on ClubCivic, when the site was in a very different state than it is today. Could you describe your experiences as a moderator on ClubCivic?
Anfrey: as the cc communtiy started to grow, i realized i wanted to help out. it wasn't about just helping people any more. it was about helping build a friendly and respectful community, something i had found to be quite rare on the internet. as i mentioned earlier, there were some social issues that needed ironing out in order to maintain a certain level of respect and integrity for the site. i started out as a regional moderator for the midwest forum, but due to a bug in the software or perhaps an unintentional/accidental setting, i was added to the supermod group, which allowed management over all forums rather than just one. it wasn't a big deal and i was glad to have the ability to help out all over the site. eventually, people started coming to me directly, alerting me to spam, possible flame outbursts, people posting misinformation, trolling, and the such. eventually, people started trusting me with not just site management issues or car questions, but their life troubles. i guess i had become more than just an amiable guy helping manage a forum, but friend to many and mentor to some. it's been a great experience to share in these people's lives and see one another through.... ha, look at me calling myself a mentor. i think i'm taking this whole thing too seriously lol... so yeah, i feel my tenure as a moderator was great, even with how busy it was and how many hours of my day it took. it was something i really enjoyed doing and certainly don't regret.
tl;dr - busy but satisfying
Joe7987: Do you see any particular challenges facing ClubCivic at this point in time?
Anfrey: the one thing that comes to mind is probably the same challenge all automotive forums face and the same challenge clubcivic has been facing throughout its existence: redundant questions and redundant threads. i don't mean to sound like a scrotum, so please bear with me. while i understand that every person's situation is different and everyone would like tailored advice, some questions have very straightforward answers. just how many "what exhaust should i get?" or "cai vs sri" or "i want a drop, what should i get?" threads have we seen throughout the years? worst of all is that the answers are usually the same as they were a couple years ago. wouldn't it be better if all this could be avoided? i think it'd be a lot easier for people searching for knowledge to have the information they need in an organized fashion rather than having to read a dozen threads with the same title asking the same question in order to get any value for their browsing.
tl;dr - redundant threads
Joe7987: How would you fix them?
Anfrey: we've certainly tried a lot of things throughout the years, haven't we? i think the idea with the sticky faq threads was great, but they need to be kept up with. hell, the last update to the 6th gen faq was twenty months ago! i think if these were filled to the brim with information, it would certainly help. i'm not usually one to point out how others are doing things and suggesting we duplicate it, but the "unabomber's manifesto" faq series over on nasioc is a wealth of information and covers so many bases. as far as gathering knowledge on a forum goes, this is worthy of admiration. we were on the right path with the sticky faqs, we just need to actually use them.
i was actually thinking about this the other night and thought that perhaps a wiki would be a good way to amass this knowledge. it's got a very organized structure and an open platform. it'd be an easy and simple to access method to share and read definitive information. i think this could really cut on the clutter and provide a basic starting spot for people needing to diagnose a problem, compare parts, install parts, etc. i'm not saying replace the forum, but it'd be like having a tome of knowledge to go alongside the discussion.
oh, and let's not forget the basic fix: emphasizing the use of the search feature. imho, it's better to add to an older thread than to create a redundant duplicate. please, search before making a new thread.
td;dr - actually use sticky faqs. a wiki perhaps? oh, and use the search everyone!!
[to be continued in the next post]
[to be continued in the next post]