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Newbies are worthless!

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by Cave Diver, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. Cave Diver

    Cave Diver Divemaster Staff Member

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    At least that's the attitude that a lot of people have. I'm paraphrasing a couple of recent comments, which is what prompted me to post this thread.

    Those two quotes are from different threads, but often go hand in hand. New divers don't feel they have anything relevant to share and the old hands think the newbies should keep their uninformed opinions to themselves. Kinda seems like both groups are in agreement, doesn't it?

    But...

    If it weren't for newbie questions, where would we be? For all the guys that know everything, there's nothing left to discuss right? So we'd all just hang around, patting each other on the back and talking about how perfect our trim is and how great we all dive. How boring would that be? :calle:

    Newbie questions:

    * Give us a chance to share knowledge
    * Helps build camaraderie
    * Spark discussions that may never have happened otherwise
    * Bring out alternative perspectives we may never have considered
    * Ensure that the freshest practices and training procedures are being discussed
    * Exposes us to new equipment we may not even have been aware of
    * Reinforces our own learning as we explain ideas and concepts
    * Provides insight to regional or cultural differences


    So tell me, what has a newbie done for YOU lately?
     
    ScubaNoey, Jim Baldwin, KWS and 20 others like this.
  2. Wookie

    Wookie ScubaBoard Business Sponsor ScubaBoard Business Sponsor

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    I have 2 divers on their first ocean dives on the boat with me today. They have re-awakened the wonder of diving in me, and the smiles on their faces make me remember why slogging this damn boat around the Caribbean is worth it.
     
  3. freston4

    freston4 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Charlotte NC
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    Unfortunately, when some people gain experience and expertise, they grow larger ego's and intolerance. They often forget that they were once newbies themselves and someone exercised patience with them and took the time to answer their questions. It's all about the person. Go on any scuba diving trip and you will always be able to spot the person that is all about themselves with little thought or concern for others. Its called a lack of humility.

    As for your question; a newbie recently reminded me that I shouldn't take myself so seriously and laugh more. Diving is supposed to be fun!
     
  4. Dr Dog

    Dr Dog DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Okanagan/Shuswap BC
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    I would consider myself a Newbie. I have about 15 dives to my name. But that is not to say I am unknowledgable. I spend a lot of time researching stuff that I am interested in, and diving is no different.

    I will be the first to admit my shortcomings with diving. My trim is terrible, my breath control could use some work, and my anxiety exists on all dives. But I am aware if these things, and i am working hard to get better at them. When I am driving around daily, i practice my breath control.( twice as long on exhale as inhale).. A tip given to me by a pro.
    I do not feel, any of the "PROS" here could really help with any of this stuff,k just what is someone on the internet going to do to help me with my trim? Nothing! Other than some insight, but to be honest, that would depend on how much info I am willing or have the foresight to share.

    I do not find the overall sentiment to be "holier than thou" here. BUt the one thing that does bug me, is when someone( newbie) admits they made a mistake on a dive. But 40 people jump in and say how bad they are and say the exact same thing. An example would be a thread that had two divers experiencing a freeflow situation on a training dive in terrible viz. I found it sickening how many people jumped down this OP throat over what they seen in the video. All chastizing this guy for admitting his mistake and even living up to his errors, and showing us the video of what happened.. He did not need to show us anything, but he did. And we should be happy. that he shared it for us to learn from. Not beat up on the guy, for not doing what a seasoned professional would have done.

    Just that thing there would make me shy away from experienced divers, as I am no longer a child, I do not allow others to speak to me like I am one
     
  5. tstormdiver

    tstormdiver ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Kentucky
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    As an instructor, I help introduce people to the underwater world. I get the biggest kick out of when they take their first breaths underwater, when the light bulb goes on & they nail their buoyancy & when they can finally clear their mask without even thinking about it. For me, those rewards are waaaay more worth any pay I recieve. To see the wonder in their eyes as they see their first reefs, sharks or whatever else catches their attention. I certainly do not mind when they ask questions that we, as more experienced divers, see as maybe silly. That is how people learn. How often have stories been handed down the generations until today? What if those stories are lost? It was said that those who forget history, are doomed to repeat it. If we didn't keep those often repeated questions alive & going, then there would quickly develop gaps in knowledge & prevent those newer divers from becoming the best they can be. It was not too long ago, I was a newbie & asking the same questions. I thank my lucky stars that there are kind & knowledgeable folk, who can put aside a little frustration to answer the same question for the godzillionth time, for the benefit of the new diver. I was taught something several years ago, "NEVER forget where you came from". We were all beginners at one time & we had to learn from others & ask questions to get to the state of knowlege where we are now. If we forget our past, we will lose our future.
     
  6. Jax

    Jax Responsibility Dodger ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: AZ TX
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    First off, I *still* consider myself a newbie -- and agree with all the above. I believe the "newbie stigma" is perpetrated by a very few insecure egos that think they need to put people in their place.

    On the other hand, we ALL (newbie and experienced) need to remember a new person might couch a question in terms that seem like s/he is asking an "OMG that's way dangerous" question that everyone jumps to conclusions that the person is doing something dangerous . . . when a simple "Why?" might expand on the real quest.

    BTW, Many, many thanks to all of you that answered and are answering all my "why" questions! :D

    There's a saying that the best teacher is s/he that just learned to do it him or herself, as they remember clearly what thought processes and activities turned on the "ah, HA!" moment.

    I enjoy looking up things, and trying to phrase them in ways that are easily understandable.

    I like the practice of putting myself in another's shoes, and trying to understand the other perspective - it is always good to practice. Some jump to conclusions and make presumptions on what "someone really thought or meant", which is a poor communications practice.

    You've pretty much hit on all the other things a newbie does for us.


    I really, really like the designation of "New" and "Basic" to flame-free zones. I also enjoying the more free-for-all in the advanced forums, since some of the snark replies can ignite serious debates and are enormous fonts of knowledge . . .
     
    lowviz likes this.
  7. Avonthediver

    Avonthediver Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Ocala, Florida
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    Its good to see wonder in our lives young or old.

    to remmber what it was like trying to get trim right in a new suit.
    learning how to use a new computer right.
    And last and this is my time favorite quote..."What does this thing'a ma bob do and how do I use it?"
     
  8. Jax

    Jax Responsibility Dodger ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: AZ TX
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    Hi, Doc!

    I think a lot of that came from people that were horrified that the poster didn't seem to have an appreciation for how very dangerous was the situation, and perhaps the lack of knowledge of the proper response. Yes, there was a lot of the "same thing".

    That is a shortcoming of the written forum. When readers perceive that someone is doing / considering something dangerous, they tend to jump on the bandwagon to convince the poster that this really, really, really is dangerous.

    Here is a fine example of how such a misunderstanding turns into a blame-storm: I heard a story from some tech divers about an OOA diver that grabbed their deco bottle reg, and the idiot was freaking out later because he was given voodoo gas. (Never mind the details.)

    I phrased a question - If I'm diving and my pony is full of EAN40, and an OOA diver (assume not Nitrox trained) gloms onto my pony, is there any sort of liability to leaving him/her on that gas as you ascend?

    Instead of addressing the question, the thread exploded into 8 pages of how the 40% was too rich, I'm going to die, challenges to the choice of gas, and how stupid I was. :) To exacerbate the problem, I blew off all the EAN40 questions/challenges, because none of that had to do with my OP and I didn't care to answer. I was interested only in the liability question.

    Now, was all that from concerned people? Or was it from "let me show you how stupid you are" egos? I submit it was about half and half.

    TSandM is absolutely brilliant in how she always answers the newb question first, and then expresses concern. I strive to be like that.

    Again, consider that we are all different. Some people's style of imparting information is different. What you perceive as "speaking to me as if I were a child" may simply be that person's persona when they put themselves into the mindset of "basic thinking". I understand that because I am very prone to 'skip-thought' as if people can follow my logic, when I skip explaining some steps in my thought process. So, won't you be patient with those that are trying to be clear? Please?
     
  9. NWGratefulDiver

    NWGratefulDiver Mental toss flycoon ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Pugetropolis
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    A constant influx of new divers is what keeps ScubaBoard interesting for me. I remember when I was a new diver, and a very experienced diver here "adopted" me. Actually, a couple of them did ... Uncle Pug was local, and I got a chance to learn a lot from him. There was another fellow on here at the time named BigJetDiver who I also got a lot of wisdom from ... often through responses to my posts, and sometimes through PM's where we could pursue conversations on a more personal level. Were it not for them, I would not have developed in the manner that I did.

    I met TSandM here when she was a new diver with a ton of questions and some incredibly entertaining stories about her new diver experiences ... she's since become one of the best diving friends I've ever had, and I'd have missed out on an awful lot over the years if she'd chosen to remain silent at the time because of her lack of experience.

    There have been many new divers over the years who have contributed heavily to making this board the unique resource that it is. Many are now experienced divers, paying their hard-earned knowledge forward. Where would they be if they'd not participated back when they were new? Probably not here.

    The breadth of experience on this board is what makes it so interesting. The new divers among us are an important part of our community, and their posts often provide us with an insight that the more experienced among us need to hear from time to time ... if for no other reason than to remember what it was like to be where they are at right now. They keep diving fresh and exciting for a lot of us.

    If you're not one of those experienced people who enjoy interacting with new divers ... and there's nothing wrong with that ... then please just skip those threads and leave it to those of us who enjoy interacting with the new divers. There's certainly plenty on ScubaBoard to maintain everyone's particular interest and taste ... so there's no reason at all to respond to threads that don't appeal to you ... and you'll be doing the rest of us a service by not mucking up a thread you have no intent to contribute to anyway.

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
     
  10. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest

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    I have over 50 years experience on SCUBA and thousands of dives yet I still find there is much I can learn about diving from folks here who have a different set of experiences than I have enjoyed. I think we old timers owe it to the "newbies" to provide them with the best possible answer to any question asked with serious intent. Of course there are those (old and new alike) who have opinions not well backed by good theory, but even so it is easier to get them to see the point if one responds with patience. To those who are really hard to read, there is always the ignore list.

    If we are to keep the activity of SCUBA going strong (and help keep dive equipment manufacturers and dive operations in business for our own use) we need tio promote diving among newer divers, not discourage it.
     
    ScubaNoey and Bob DBF like this.

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