Never a Dull Moment
by Dani Osborne

Dani Osborne

Things are never dull at Dimensions Online. Under the seemingly quiet exterior of the site's main entrance, there's a teaming hub of activity. With more than 2000 visitors a day, anything is likely to happen, and often does. At first glance it may not be obvious, but with so many different areas of interest, there are always things to do and people to meet. Dimensions Online editor is a job that I enjoy, but it's not always an easy one.

One particularly active area of Dimensions Online is our discussion boards. If you're not familiar with what discussion boards are, the only thing I can compare them to is a group of people discussing various issues over a table at a local coffee shop. The only difference is that itís not face-to-face and the group of people involved would not only fill up a table, they'd probably fill the entire coffee shop! With a group of people this large, the discussion is often lively, and may even cause some tempers to flare. Sometimes we're forced to mediate the discussion, however, most of the time the participants handle problems quite well on their own. In fact, we've had some really interesting and insightful discussions.

At times people on the discussion boards do tend to get very upset when others disagree with them, but they need to sit back and remember that the internet is made up of so many different people with different points of view that not everyone is always going to agree. There are those with legitimate points and there are those who just like to "flame" people. On the internet the term flame means to argue just for argumentís sake. In other words, they like to stir up the pot a bit just to see what negative reactions will result. We have also had a few people that try to pass judgement on Dimensions itself, claiming it is a T & A magazine obviously without ever having viewed a copy themselves. Even though we may not always agree with some people, we strive to provide a place where all people and all opinions may be expressed.

Another of my favorite areas is our chat forum. This is a lot like our discussion boards, except that itís in real time. Chat forums are not new to me, in fact, I met my husband in one. In spite of that, I can honestly say that our chat areas are among some of the most interesting I've visited. I doubt you'll find a more diverse group of BBWs and FAs anywhere on the World Wide Web. On many occasions, when I've decided to drop in, I've even observed several Dimensions models chatting. The chat is virtually unmoderated (since we can't watch it 24 hours a day), so we get "trolls" visiting from time to time. By the way, the word troll is a term used on the internet to describe someone who is a troublemaker. The best way to deal with a troll is to ignore them, and usually they'll get bored and go away. Despite these unruly folks, most of the "regulars" are friendly, mature and intelligent people. Discussions here are often playful, in contrast to some of the more serious subjects discussed on the web boards. Recently, several of our regular chatters had a real life "get-together." I was invited, but I couldn't make it. Hopefully I won't have to miss the next one. I enjoy meeting and interacting with so many great people, it definitely one of my favorite aspects of being Dimensions' online editor.

One of the more controversial sections of Dimensions Online is the Weight Room. This is an area that caters to weight-gain enthusiasts (feeders and feedees). By far, the Weight Room has generated more controversy than any other section of Dimensions Online. There have been livid discussions on the bulletin boards, in the chat areas and even in Dimensions magazine itself both for and against it. There seems to very little middle ground on this issue. Both sides refuse to budge one way or the other. I've received roughly equal amounts of email from both sides. Some just to say "thank you" and others to say "no thanks." We have also provided the Weight Room with its own discussion board so that people who really aren't interested in reading or participating in this type of discussion don't have to. In spite of the heated arguments about feederism and its place here at Dimensions Online, weíll continue to offer this forum. Love it or hate it, itís here to stay.

Along with keeping up with these challenges, I scour the internet daily for any size-related news which we post on our main page to help keep everyone updated on whatís going on. Updating all of the other areas of the web site, particularly the gallery, an area where frequent visitors to Dimensions Online can post their photos and personal information, keeps me pretty busy as well. I also receive a lot of feedback regarding Dimensions Online via email. Although I don't have time to respond to every email I receive, I do read each one. The feedback that people give is a wonderful tool to help us keep things fresh and interesting.

As Dimensions' online editor, my job is not always easy (I always have a bottle of Excedrin handy at my computer desk!), itís a daily challenge, but one that I enjoy. Believe me, thereís never a dull moment! Ŗ

Dimensions Online Column