K Bean & Coffee Snobs
Paul here again. After 10 years and 3000 posts on Coffee Snobs as firstly a member, and then secondly as a Melbourne Coffee Snobs sponsor, I have a story to tell …and here it is.
The heart and soul of the Coffee Snobs forum is a handful of “salt of the earth” hobbyists who are there to help others with fantastic advice. I really admire these members. There are members who buy coffee equipment on a budget and with the help of the community they find ways to brew magnificent coffee without that second mortgage. There are people who join up to just to say a quick hello and to share their experiences. There are also gear freaks who love trying out the latest coffee machines and other toys. And yes, before I started up the K Bean Coffee Machines business I was a well known gear freak on Coffee Snobs.
Of course there are the commercial players and the usual forum trolls as well but as a hobbyist they are very easy to ignore. I really enjoyed the Coffee Snobs forum as a member.
When K Bean became a new Coffee Snobs sponsor things really changed. As a new sponsor I was harassed by a couple of long-term sponsors along with a number of forum trolls. The most hurtful attacks were the personal ones. I wasn’t in it alone though, with members rallying to help me out and encouraging me to “hang in there” when threads started heating up. This encouragement really got my chin off of the ground some days.
Coffee Snobs Admin was a disappointment as I called out many times for support and was either brushed off or completely ignored. I felt like I was in a school yard being kicked by bullies and getting the classic “just ignore it” response. I recall one time when I was accused of “BS” by another sponsor and the advice from the Admin truly was just these words “Don’t Respond.” It was so frustrating.
One major conflict occurred when a controversial new machine arrived from Italy and I was targeted in very nasty ways for selling it. Again, Admin ignored my pleas and responded with something along the lines of “we build the sandpit, you to play in it.” Seriously, that was the response.
Another conflict occurred when another Coffee Snobs sponsor left the forum but kept on posting with a new account where he posed as a regular member. With this account the ex sponsor continued from the shadows with his normal anti-K Bean catch phrases including “bean K Beaned” and various references to “BS.” BS was a favourite acronym of this ex sponsor. The 24/7 harassment was so just difficult to cope with and it took a huge emotional toll.
As a 3000+ post Coffee Snobs forum veteran and ex Melbourne Coffee Snobs sponsor I am bitterly disappointed in the way that this all worked out. However, I have hung up my gloves and departed Coffee Snobs completely.
That’s enough of my little rant. I’m happy to say that, with the Coffee Snobs nightmare set aside, K Bean Coffee Machines has bean a dream come true. Please move on to read about my happy trek from coffee hobbyist to Italian espresso machine retailer by taking a look at my K Bean Journey blog by clicking here