A couple of weeks ago, when we welcomed you into the new year, I wrote that 2022 wasn’t going to be the year of “talk.” It would be the year of “do.” (Read that essay here.) In order to “do” we’re sort of doing the opposite: We’re pumping our brakes a little bit—slow and steady wins the race, doesn’t it? I’ll explain.
We want to make this website, this newsletter and all of our others, better. So how do we do that? We can’t keep adding a million more projects onto our plates. It’s like adding more leftovers to the fridge every day. That’s not the point! Nobody wants to finish a half-eaten sandwich three days later (ew). Plus, why would we still cook when we have three days of leftovers already? Do you see where this is going? We’re starting at the bottom. We’re making the things we have right now better.
We’re cleaning up the website. We’re going through our categories and tags and advertisers and old articles and code hidden behind more code to speed up the site, to make navigating the site easier, to make more articles available… And there’s no stopping us until we’re the best that we can be! We like being the best!
So, all that being said, while some of us are working in the background to do all of the above (it’s easier said than done, trust us), our incredibly knowledgeable, super friendly, suuuuper funny Q&A Maintenance & Repair expert, Dave Solberg, is working on a special project for you. (You see, while we’re still catching up on leftovers, Dave is cooking up a four-course meal!)
Here’s what Dave has to say about it:
“Hey, we need your help!
Articles have been the mainstay of RVtravel.com for 20+ years. They’re a good source of information and education and will continue to be. Recently we had a writers’ meeting via Zoom to discuss topics and ideas for future articles. The discussion turned into an unbelievable wealth of information and one of the writers said, ‘We should have hit record and posted this!’
He was right, we should have! So… the idea bloomed. We’ve decided to test a new concept of an ‘RV Travel Tech Talks’, which is not the official title… yet! We are looking for the top ten issues faced by RVers today so we can assemble a team of industry experts as well as experienced RVers to discuss these issues live via virtual format and taped for posting at a time that is convenient for most of our readers. We are asking for your help in submitting the topics and issues you would like to have discussed.
Once we get the topics defined, we will then post the topic and ask you to submit specific questions on those topics. We’ll ask those questions of our panel as well as one or more outside experts that have agreed to join us. Some experts may include: a slide room mechanism manufacturer, battery technician, solar panel expert, campground owner, and others. This will provide us with a broad spectrum of knowledge and different perspectives to cover your issue and provide the best information possible.
We will be starting with a ‘Live-to-Tape’ format since it can be difficult to get projected panelists to commit to a dedicated schedule, especially with RV show season upon us and busy weekends ahead.
So, let us hear what technical questions you might have, new products to cover, concerns, anything that may be an issue in your RV world so we can assemble the best team to help make your RV experience much more enjoyable. Just fill out the form below and submit it. We’re looking forward to hearing your ideas.”
Okay, folks, you heard him! I’ve got to get back to work doing all that cleaning-up-and-making-the-website-better stuff, so get in touch with Dave and he’ll take it from there. We’re excited for this project and hope you are too! You’re going to learn a whole lot.
I for one like video, and the comment section that comes with it Of course it depends on the quality of the video.
I’m reluctant to pile on here but am going to overcome that reluctance and state that I agree with most all the comments that favor written vs video as a general preference. I watch videos and I listen to podcasts but I gather and learn far more from the written word.
While I submitted a topic, I like others have said in these comments prefer to read, I usually fast forward videos looking for interesting parts, I don’t generally like podcasts as I read faster then they speak and I can skim for something I want to read. Waiting to see what changes you may bring.
For what it is worth, I agree with what Martin and others have basically stated about videos and reading. There is another “news letter”, or podcast, or whatever, that has their conversation on video and then transcribes it below. I totally skip the video and go to the transcribed section. On the other hand, there are now many others out there, that were brought up on video, even in school, that may only respond to video – I don’t know because I am not one of them. If your platform needs to move that direction to keep or attract new viewers, then that is the way for you to go. RVTravel is my favorite just because it reads like a magazine. It is still what I consider to be journalism. Frankly, if RVTravel were also in a real magazine form, I would subscribe to the paper edition rather than the computer version. Just continue your journalistic work no matter how you must evolve with the times.
I have to agree with most of the other comments, I really have no interest in watching videos on repairs that are not specific to my RV. So I will probably not watch any. Also I personally absorb info much better reading.
I applaud your efforts to move forward with new ideas. In regard to technical stuff – this is where motorhome and trailer owner/operators are most concerned especially with a breakdown away from home base. The former Highways and Motorhome magazines had excellent “Tech Topic” sections – both are missed by all of us who remember. While video’s are great for “seeing” an explanation – the written word is easier to comprehend and save for future reference. In a perfect world – I would support both formats, as long as they support each other. That may seem like overkill, however it would get both/all factions on board.
Maybe a pole to find out what kind of internet speed your reader have. I for one is at the mercy of campground and other “slow poke” internet services. Video need lots of band width, not good for us. Love the newsletter, looking forward to the “new” version.
Dave, one thing to keep in mind on video is that some of us who are on the road need to be careful with our bandwidth usage. You don’t need high-def for most of this stuff — 480p is plenty. If it’s a video on a problem I need to solve ASAP then I’ll watch it regardless of the resolution. But, for example, your video today on solar charge controllers and battery life wasn’t of particular interest to me. So I did not watch it. But if it were text on a page I would have read it because you never know when you’ll learn something.
Best of luck with the new project.
Here is another vote for text over video. I like a good video to walk me through an actual repair, but otherwise, I MUCH prefer reading info than watching. Also, I am full time, and in some locations, my internet just isn’t up to streaming video.
I much prefer to read a transcript rather than watch a video. That way I can skim until I find a topic I relevant to my interests.
So, like Rubber Tramp Rendezvous presentations, on the web. Their attendance is down drastically this year. Not that big an audience for general discussions on major topics any more.
People want to ask questions when they need particular advice or something breaks, not sit for hours soaking up info which does not apply to them.
Some young folks are still video-nuts, but they like to follow gurus, not listen to panel discussions.
Please see my email answer on this.
You may get a meh! response to videos. They have their place, but there is already enough video content out there.
I for one, much prefer the current format.
You will find production cost, manpower, scheduling and stress much higher for videos than articles.
Thanks. Just my 2 cents.
I agree with Tim, YouTube is full of videos covering just about any issue you may come across on your particular RV type.
Years back, before the takeover of Good Sam Club by the current and not so well respected ownership, their HIghways Magazine had a great tech ask and answer section. I have saved many of those old mags as a reference library of sort for real everyday issues RV’ers come across with their own RV. This would be a good model for RV Travel to mold their tech section after.
Agree, more media and videos are not my preference, I like this format.
I guess I’ll add my 2¢ to this. I much prefer to read the answers to questions rather than watch videos. ‘Printed’ stuff can be Copy and Pasted in my own RV tip documents that I can save and pull up for future reference, unlike videos. I guess I’m “old school”.
I totally agree with you and to the comments below. If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.
Videos have their place, but not in troubleshooting or repair . Who wants to keep ‘rewinding’ and pausing a video.
Videos showing installation or repair procedure are great since it’s a hands on way of showing the install.
I have professional videos for working on my motorcycle. They are good for showing how to disassemble and reassemble, but once they get into the technical aspect of troubleshooting, I pull out my service manual and read the procedure.
Plus most people remember what they have read.