Yeah funny how it is that some of the most distracting (too me personally) are the most prolific - a couple of them have like 4 or 5 thousand posts and usually these are excessively verbose posts too - Whoa! Think how much time that is just to write all those posts!
I've also gotten a lot out of your forums and website - not just learning but also from the community. It's amazing how this forum brings together people from all around the world.
I would not like a pro only forum, though honestly I would like more relevant conversation and a lot less of the same questions.
Regardless whatever I want is not relevant as this isn't my house, it's Michael's.
Still, there is a lot of good thought and inspiration that comes from all areas of photography and when you step back and think about it, who is more enthused or even pure about photography than the artist that does it only for the love of the photograph?
It's easy as a professional to get the nose in the air attitude, but honestly even on very large budget projects some of the most inspiring comments or suggestions comes from the "non" creative side of the room. (personally I don't believe there is a non creative side of the room).
Whenever I speak to a school, the first thing I ask is why do you want to be a photographer and what do you want to photograph. Usually when it gets down to the person that says "weddings/portraits" there is a snicker from the other students, but when you think about it, nothing lasts longer than a personal portrait or hopefully a wedding album (well at least 50% of the wedding albums).
We can all brag about seeing our name in print, or our work in times square but in reality those images usually end up in the bottom of the birdcage in 60 days.
It's the photos that hang on walls and in bookshelves that last.