Not sure how much interest this will generate since members who've left audio forums, or at least this forum aren't here to comment.
Anyway, I've been one to come and go from forums of all kinds over many years, this for any number of reasons. So recently I've been lurking again, checking in perhaps once a week, came across a recent post where a member stated he was leaving because he felt unappreciated. Got me to thinking how much this sentiment enters into people decisions to participate or not participate in this forum, or any other forum for that matter.
Based on my observations and experience, being unappreciated and/or underappreciated is inherent to the hobby/obsession. Unless one has very wide experience with equipment in their home system or systems they have only limited empirical evidence to offer. For instance I'm exclusively involved with SET, custom build and modification. only limited numbers of members have interest in this, so appreciation only goes so far.
Seems to me, a whole lot of people on these forums speak on things they've only heard from others, or have very limited experience with, suppose this makes them feel important. And then some are provocateurs, get their need to be appreciated fulfilled in this manner, guess arguing feels like appreciation for them. Based on my observations the need to feel appreciated is important for people both to continue to participate and in decisions to leave.
I've also been perusing some past posts where members are leaving and remarking about how audiogon was a more friendly place at some time in the past. I don't recall a time when that was true, there have always been bully's, provocateurs, self important people here. I believe this nostalgia comes from a time when this individual was still making many new audio discoveries. I suspect many of us settle down into satisfactory and/or dream systems and no longer have much interest in new discoveries. I for one don't see this forum ever changing much, members come and go, always newbies and oldies, same arguments and agreements go on and on.
For me, interest in talking about audio waxes and wanes, never get tired of listening to music over a fine system, just get tired of talking and thinking about everything that goes into creating and maintaining a system. Feeling like you're repeating yourself and seeing the same old posts gets stale for me, so I leave. If past repeats itself I'll likely find audio talk to be of interest at some point in the future.
Just interested if others have similar experiences or observations.