“All too easy...”

I like to think of MOCpages as a sort of condemned public housing block, cut off from the rest of the world and occupied by squatters. Indeed, all that seems to remain are roaming packs of feral youths and an intrepid band of hold-outs who have barricaded themselves in the basement with a stockpile of food and ammunition. I’m not talking about the builders who retain a sort of dual-citizenship on both MOCpages and Flickr; I’m talking about the hardcore…the loyalists. The MOCpage building still has power, mind you, but there are frequent blackouts and a general breakdown of services and over-watch. While such an environment is far from ideal, there is action to be found there and nowhere else. Case in point is this gem of a diorama depicting a famous scene from the last great Star Wars movie, 1980′s The Empire Strikes Back. I’m not typically one to prattle on about the details, I figure you can make them out without my help, but the technique Markus 1984 uses for the center of the floor is brilliant.

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5 comments on ““All too easy...”

  1. Photobrickabrad

    I’ve been coming to Brothers Brick for years. In fact, I’ve had you guys bookmarked from the first day I found you guys. I’ve enjoyed the high quality builds that you’ve featured, and even been lucky enough to have been featured for one of my builds, which I greatly appreciated. I always thought it was a really high honor to be featured on your site.

    But lately I’ve been very surprised by a sense of elitism that’s been sneaking into your posts. And this post in particular – one that seems to go out of it’s way to bad-mouth MOCpages – has caught me very off guard.

    What’s going on with you guys?

    Instead of just featuring the build, which is stellar and deserves to be seen, did you need to throw in the commentary disparaging MOCpages?

    I’m not trying to troll – it’s an honest concern. LEGO is about having fun, and I visit sites I feel embody that. But lately I’ve really felt that Brothers Bricks has been increasingly negative – and unnecessarily so.

    Wondering if I should find a new home for custom LEGO features?

    Sincerely,
    Brad

  2. michael.rutherford

    Brad.
    I think you are missing the larger picture here because of your own defensive biases about MOCpages.

    Keith lays it on pretty thick where MOCpages is concerned… but so what? I ask that question for a few reasons.

    First, Keith gives credit where it is due. Look at this particular part of his post: “The MOCpage building still has power, mind you, but there are frequent blackouts and a general breakdown of services and over-watch. While such an environment is far from ideal, there is action to be found there and nowhere else.” In two sentences, Keith offers accurate observations about the sites short falls, and then he deliberately highlights important information about the sites strengths.

    I spend most of my on-line Lego time on MOCpages (I’m a creature of habit). I find his comments regarding blackouts to be both relevant (in terms of evaluating the quality of the site), and entirely accurate (it’s true man). Unfortunate and vexing perhaps, but accurate.

    Yet he also points out (in a decidedly objective manner) that there are quality builds on that site that are not found elsewhere. Consider the context of his statements after all! He has just posted an excellent specimen of “MOCpages Culture” on TBB. That is an endorsement that transcends mere “Words” and resides squarely in the realm of “Action.” The latter speaks louder than the former. Do you disagree with this assertion?

    As for all of his bleak rhetoric about the urban poor, the disenfranchised, and the downtrodden… that is Goldman boiler plate. Keith uses dramatic hyperbola and stereotype often and effectively. In this particular case, he is doing so for two reasons. He is deliberately appealing to the prevailing perceptions of the online population, AND… because it’s funny.

    You make a statement in your post that really sticks out:” But lately I’ve been very surprised by a sense of elitism that’s been sneaking into your posts.” I assume that you made the statement on Keiths post because you feel that his post is exemplary of this “elitism.” Keith and fellow Brother Brick Nannen Zhang post lots of stuff from MOCpages (certainly more than most other Brothers Brick) so the tie in to elitism eludes me.

    You go on to ask: “Instead of just featuring the build, which is stellar and deserves to be seen, did you need to throw in the commentary disparaging MOCpages?” I would observe that while you are agitating for selective reporting, TBB (and certainly Keith) strives for comprehensive reporting. TBB is not just a clearing house for images and praise. They often adopt an almost adversarial perspective, taking good hard looks at the topics covered. TBB has shown pretty consistantly that it values accuracy and depth as much as it values the production of warm feelings.

    You ask an interesting question: “Wondering if I should find a new home for custom LEGO features?” Obviously our desires differ. I value perspectives that challenge my beliefs as much as those that reinforce them. I LIKE good news, but I TRUST mixed reports. I like discourse and analysis. I can only speculate on your needs based on your post, but in answer to your question, I would recommend the site called brickshelf. There you will find a large volume of excellent builds, presented in an environment which is almost devoid of debate, commentary, or any other unhappy thoughts. I’m serious. It’s a good site.

    I hope I haven’t missed your point Brad.

    Mike

  3. Keith Goldman Post author

    I don’t think anything is going on with “you guys”, I think you’re pretty clearly talking about me, so lets talk. I’m not interested in just posting a model with the minimum facts about the build; I like to add an opinion or rant or humor or some kind of interesting rhetoric. Sometimes that extra material can be offensive to a certain demographic of our readers who like things happy and sterile, but I make no apology for it, I have to enjoy this unpaid gig or else there is little reason to continue it. As for this specific post, I don’t thing there is anything inaccurate about my description and I thought I was quick to point out that there is still content on MOCPages that you can’t find anywhere else.

    I have no idea where your charge of elitism comes from, I try to blog everyone I can from as many diverse locations as I can, and I think the same is true of the other Brothers.

    As for your ultimate question about whether or not to leave TBB for happier places, only you can answer that, but I will offer a few suggestions. You could just ignore the weekend posts and 95% of what you find offensive will vanish. Or you could bail out for any number of blogs that focus on LEGO custom models. BrickNerd might be a good fit for your outlook on the hobby, or perhaps the good folks at The LEGO Car Blog. I appreciate the sincerity of your comment though, and good luck to you buddy!

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