• Welcome to ScapeCrunch!

    We are a friendly, online community of people interested in planted aquariums. We support and help each other learn and grow. It is our sincere hope that you will join us and find our tight-knit community valuable and fun!

    ScapeCrunch is different than Facebook Groups. Here's how:

    • It is a place where you can make long-term friends in the planted aquarium hobby and have long, multi-day talks on specific subjects.
    • Unlike social media, online communities like ScapeCrunch are much better at curating collective knowledge and in fostering deeper relationships.
    • They lend themselves better at long-form discussions.
    • You can maintain a thread on your personal aquarium with pictures and details. Other members can comment, help and ask questions. You can do the same with their Member Tank threads.

    Where Facebook is more like a large city-wide party, ScapeCrunch is more like your neighborhood bar "where everybody knows your name. And they're always glad you came." It's always fun to go to large parties but it's at the local bar that you feel people really know you. The great part is that you can and should go to both!

    Please consider joining to become a full fledged member of our growing community of planted aquarium obsessed enthusiasts. Let's grow together!

    Join Us!

That didn't take long


Community Member
  • Jun 11, 2023

    After: 0 new postings of any kind.

    One (1) private message, to one (1) single individual, inviting that person, privately, to come over to Scaperunch and see what we were doing with CO2.

    A message including the words "Aqua Rocks Colorado", it is true, in clear and blatant abrogation of the rules of, well, I'm not sure 😂

    Call me.. Dr Spam


    I posted only once, ever, I just wanted somebody who asked for help on a really big tank to be aware of the reactor, as it can be challenging to do big tanks with vertical bubble reactors. That was seen as "self promotion" and deleted. This was a long time ago and since then I have not logged in to my account.

    I also got banned, just an hour ago. How I can be a repeat offender with just one post in my entire membership is a mystery to me.
    Huh, I wonder if they thought I was secretly you? Because the title of the ScapeCrunch CO2 thread that I referenced in my private message had your handle in it?

    Okay.. that's a level of paranoia I hardly know existed 😆😆 especially given my account had been active since 2011 🙄

    You know.. we all assume that these actions come from some hyper reactive, low-skill young moderator. But, what if what we're seeing is just a bargain-basement implementation of some really bad AI? 🤔

    That would be kind of hilarious.
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    I wonder if they thought I was secretly you?
    I am trying my best to interpret this as a compliment :unsure: Just joking :ROFLMAO:

    my account had been active since 2011 🙄
    Really sorry to hear this. You may try a ban-appeal.

    Some forums hurt themselves with admins/mods stubbornly refusing to admit that mistakes were made and correct for these.
    Two more bans on TPT today, we'll see what happens here. For me limited loss, because I had enough after the intervention on my first and only post.
    Very few will get how @GreggZ could have been banned, one of the best threads on that forum removed and a big loss of value to the community. Even if he wouldn't come back actively it would be better to just settle it, restore his once famous thread, and appoint @GreggZ "member emeritus".
    Then, as long as another forum will live with an untruthful narrative (I am being polite here) about @Yugang ban, I wish them good luck with upholding their credibility as friendly forum with high standards and values.
    Admins have unchecked power, some know how to master the art or moderation, but even then the reality is that only members can make a forum strong. Count the current members who stay and help to grow, not the past 20.000 of whom most have left after a year or two.

    That would be kind of hilarious.
    It would be, if we wouldn't have spent so much of our time and passion.
    Really sorry to hear this. You may try a ban-appeal.

    Yea no worries, I had just checked in to see if I could be helpful. There's very little of value that goes on there anymore, at least it's good they have Joe still on board to provide some constructive input from time to time.

    I did send a brief note to VerticalScope, it baffles me how they'd be expecting to maximize ad revenue ROI routinely running participants off this way. If this is a live mod team, may be time for some corporate training refresher 🙄🙄

    Or if it is really a glorified chatbot, somebody will want to consider some serious algorithm tweaking.
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    Thats why the active member base has become 90% beginners. Nothing wrong with that of course. I still sell a little bit over there so I chime in every now and then to help somebody out. But unless youre wondering why your beta is bloated or why you still have algae with 0 nitrates...theres just no real draw to be there
    Thats why the active member base has become 90% beginners. Nothing wrong with that of course. I still sell a little bit over there so I chime in every now and then to help somebody out. But unless youre wondering why your beta is bloated or why you still have algae with 0 nitrates...theres just no real draw to be there
    My thoughts exactly.
    I got banned after I replied to a post where a guy was specifically referencing a post on the 2hr Aquarist site that discussed low pH/dKH tanks. And my tank was referenced in the article. He was worried about a pH crash with low dKH. I told the guy not to worry to much about it as many in the community run zero/low dKH tanks on purpose and that pH crashes are mostly a myth. It is almost always the result of VERY poor maintenance.

    The amazing thing is the guy who banned me is now saying almost the exact the same thing that got me banned. I mean he pretty much summarized exactly what I said.

    The end result was a thread with over 200 pages and over 4K posts was removed from the site. And the thing about that thread is that is was not just my thoughts, it was the thoughts of a large group of successful people in the hobby who regularly chimed in. What a shame. The guy should self reflect on that decision but I doubt he ever will.

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    Follow the money, follow the key drivers that shareholders and other stakeholders monitor.

    TPT is owned by VerticalScope Inc., a listed company (TSX: FORA). For understanding their main objectives, and drivers for decisions, just check their communications to share holders.

    We read that the key drivers are MAU, the Monthly Active Users, and organic revenue growth (advertising and probably sponsoring as well).

    Now, how could this help understanding moderation on this platform, where shareholders are in the game for traffic, growth and revenues. Just my personal guess (We don't want legal challenges to ScapeCrunch):
    • As a member, you will not make yourself popular by helping other users with references to other external sources of information, as this may create a leak on the forum's Monthly Active Users and help these other competitive platforms to grow at VerticalScope's expense. Conflict of interest?
    • The platform will thrive with a continued state of confusion regarding hobby related issues, as that will reliably keep users searching and help the growth of Monthly Active Users. While this statement may seem a bit of an overreach, there seems some credibility to a guess that the forum would not really look for fundamental solutions to the challenges in the hobby as some hobbyists (incl Yugang) would hope for. Conflict of interest?
    • You will not make yourself popular by proposing solutions that are not in the interest of sponsors. Conflict of interest?
    • Quality of content matters, reputation of contributors matters, but only if it attracts more active users who continue to come back. Other than that, this is all about traffic irrespective of quality or value to the hobbyist. Conflict of interest?
    The operating costs for running a platform, assuming volunteers help, are not high. The admin on another forum shared that it will cost about 1500 pound sterling annually, so roughly 2000 USD. They have 8 sponsors, plus contributing members so that seems not a bad deal.

    So indeed, if we want a platform that is a safe and productive place for our hobby, if we want to avoid misalignment with listed company shareholders, sponsors, and moderators then we should know that this is entirely possible from a financial point of view and there is no need for conflicts between business and hobby objectives.

    Finally, there is nothing wrong with shareholders, sponsors or advertising. I am also not in any way suggesting that forum moderators who work for listed companies are not ethical, but I do suggest that they are aligned with the organisation goals and management. To a lesser extent this could happen when a forum is run by, or depends on commercial partners from the trade, as the saying goes there is no free lunch.

    ScapeCrunch, I believe, balances financial necessities much better with hobbyists interests than any other current platform, but it is important to remind ourselves that it is not easy to keep a forum clean and aligned with hobbyists interests. I hope ScapeCrunch will grow, collect a reasonable revenue as needed for its success, but continues to be a platform for and by hobbyists.

    I am quite passionate about this topic as I have had an extremely bad experience (btw not on TPT), nearly three years ago, proposing a new technology that was not in the interest of certain manufacturers, retailers or sponsors. I cannot prove that sponsors were involved, but up to three times I got no reply asking somebody who desperately tried to argue it could not work, if he was a hobbyists or rather from the trade defending his business. This thread led to my first official warning on that forum, an IP block on all my devices so that I could not login or even visit the site as a guest, the entire valuable (for the hobby) thread locked and later deleted, and a twice repeated advice to not post more innovations on that forum.
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