In May 2002 after seeing Joe for the first time I ventured to Jbonamassa.com to check his tour schedule and found my way to the then antiquated forum. Joe posted somewhat regularly under the pseudonym Opie. I registered as Andy of Mayberry just to continue the Andy Griffith theme. Joe’s dad even posted back then. When I realized Joe already had a dad and maybe proclaiming myself as the Sherriff of Mayberry I was being a bit pretentious, I re registered as jim m.
The original forum for those of you that remember it was the Wild West and not very user friendly and the only contact with Joe’s management was Joe. During that first year I like many of you became obsessed with my new found discovery that awoke the love of music in me again. I traveled to many nearby states to get to witness the birth of a legend. In those days you even got to help set up and grab a beer at the bar with Roscoe, Kenny, Eric and even Joe. I was surprised that he even knew me by my handle from the forum.
Having already written about the history I have with Joe I’ll keep this to forum history. As Joe’s popularity grew and more people began to post there appeared some strange personalities with some argumentative qualities I will just say. I’m not naming any names, but it just seemed that the old forum was ill equipped to handle the chaos that sometimes ensued. It definitely kept things interesting in hindsight but not without a bit of unnecessary drama. Phil Cornell and I proposed moving to another platform which is the current platform we know today. It had the ability to moderate and with a few simple directions and basic rules we proceeded to try and take control of the mayhem. This was all in April 2006. Nicki Joe’s original Webmaster took on the task and this forum was born.
It is now March 2016 just a few weeks shy of ten years since the inception of the new forum. Over those ten years I have checked in at the very least twice a day and sometimes many more depending on what potential problems might surface. Occasionally when out of town I might miss a day or two but always would try to keep up with things since the volume of posts could be overwhelming if they accumulated for a few days. Even though there were not as many members they seemed overall more active.
Things have changed as of late one being the office admin has recently upgraded the platform to control the spam bots. Something we had hoped for because the last few years that is really the only thing I needed to take care of day to day. The forum community really made the talk of keeping things civil easy. There has been the occasional dustup but none in recent memory. One other change has been removing me as moderator. Which was a bit of a surprise simply because of no explanation, but after sleeping on it I realized it was for the best. It is time for me to just be a contributor and fan. As Joe’s growth has continued exponentially it is time for the office to have control over the content without my interpretation of policy which I’m sure isn’t always in line with management. Joe has an army of office personnel and a Social Marketing department and I have always said this was Joe’s original Social Marketing tool.
I just ask that the presence and contribution of Joe’s team, which has always been desired here truly is committed to guiding this forum and take an active role here. Get to know the people, understand their needs and make decisions on the direction this platform takes. It has always been a resource and a history of the evolution of Joe’s career. I’m just going to return to my role as a participant and provide content and discussion that might be interesting and keep people informed when necessary as well as provide opinion and answers to any questions my experience might allow me share. I’m no longer moderator but I’m still jim m.