Nov 26 2013, 11:32pm
the message boards date back to May 1999. Those boards were reset weekly 'to keep issues up to date'.
just in case some are not aware...
In June 1999, a more 'permanent' system was set up. Old threads/posts didn't disappear but only a few most recent ones were active. The rest were essentially locked. There's lots of reminiscing that can go on about those old boards. The bottom line was, the set up and server couldn't really handle the load and things often went 'wonky'.
In March 2007, the boards we are on today opened. We all said good bye to the old boards and had a party to welcome these new ones. It was a festive and reflective day.
But if a newer person were to look at the first threads here and see a 2007 date, they might think the boards were initiated on that date, and that they were Hobbit focused from the get-go. That is not the case. In fact, I can remember when we had one board for 'Movie' and that was 100% LOTR movie. As the Hobbit started becoming more of a reality, Hobbit news started dominating the 'Movie' board, making it hard to conduct the more reflective conversations we were having about the LOTR movies. I can't remember when the Movie board was officially split into two: one for LOTR and one for TH, but all threads connected to the TH were moved retroactively to the new Hobbit movie board so you can't look at the earliest thread on that board to determine the date.
Between the time when the LOTR movies were pretty much done and the Hobbit started buzzing, we held lots of regular, scheduled discussions in the Reading Room and the (LOTR) movie board. There were also lots of regular fun amusement threads (Scenes from the Hat, Short Attention Span Theater, Middle-earth Conspiracy Theories, etc.) and just lots of spontaneous conversation of all types among people who pretty much all got along together with little fireworks or drama (not that there weren't moments....).
People who have met on the message boards and/or in the chat room have been gathering for moots large and small for years. Lots of us share actual mailing addresses to send trinkets, cards, and gifties to each other or to visit each other while traveling. We had a travelling journal where people added a page about themselves into the album and mailed it on to the next message board member. Some have even gotten married to people they've met through TORn.
People come and go, sometimes in waves. We lose touch with some, some come back after years of absence. But what I would want any visitor of any length to know about the message boards is, for a good number of us, we have considered this a 'home' for any where from 1 to 14 years. We care about each other and we are invested in making this place a vibrant and inviting place to visit. We hope many who visit will stay and also feel invested in making this a lovely place to be. I'm glad you feel that you'd like to linger. :-)
LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide