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From Aug 2006 - Nov 2013 WeDig provided a live forum for diggers & fans of Vindolanda. It has now been mothballed and will be maintained as a live archive.

Here you will find preserved 7 years of conversation, photos, & knowledge about a site many people love. Vindolanda gets under the skin. (Figuratively and literally as a volunteer excavator!) It's a place you remember, filled with people you remember!

Thanks for 7 great years!

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Hiatus; Fond remembrance of 7 great years
Topic Started: Oct 17 2013, 12:04 PM (1,566 Views)
SacoHarry
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Effective November 15th WeDigVindolanda’s administrators will be mothballing the site. No new posts will be possible afterward.

WeDig has been a great deal of fun, and a valuable resource for active volunteers and armchair archeologists around the world. But if archeology teaches anything it is that things change. Seven years is brief for an Empire, but an eternity on the Internet. The current setup hasn’t aged well and needs renovations far above the time or energy of your humble admins. Rather than limp into decrepitude, we decided to end with heads high.

WeDig was begun with two big goals: (1) provide an online forum for volunteers to stay in touch, and (2) be a place to show off each year’s progress in the trenches.

Modern social media has better tools now to do the former. And after years of uncertainty the Vindolanda Trust now has its very well-maintained official blog to handle the latter.

When WeDig was begun, many in the archaeology community doubted the value/interest in unveiling life in the trenches -- and giving laypeople a forum to discuss it. Today, hopefully WeDig’s popularity has put those doubts to rest. (Googling “Vindolanda” puts WeDig on or near the first page.) The Trust has followed WeDig’s lead and started an official blog that has in its premier year done a fine job of providing regular updates and discussions of interesting artifacts. No doubt, veteran WeDiggers are eager for the Trust to continue its quality postings. Visit them at http://vindolanda.blogspot.co.uk/

As for staying in touch, we are exploring a FaceBook group or similar idea for diggers -- will send out an email once things are shored up. We hope to see you there!

The WeDig archives for 2006-2013 will still be available for the foreseeable future. (As will the well-traveled Digger’s Guide. Its pages on Vindolanda’s history, periods, area attractions, and special features will be relevant for years to come.)

It is bittersweet stepping back from WeDig, but it is also the right thing to do. Those of you who love Vindolanda and Hadrian’s Wall have probably all at one time or another stood amongst ancient stones as shadows grow long. It is humbling to feel so young among much that is so very old. And at the same time to realize that we as individuals are here today and gone tomorrow.

VALE NOS EXCAVO!
WEDIGVINDOLANA MMVI to MMXIII

-- Harry, Tim, and Pete
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SacoHarry
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As to your humble admins they continue to thrive. It is rather unlikely that keeping up with our activities was much of a factor in the steady stream of traffic over the years, but those interested in doing so are welcome.

SacoHarry wanders the seaside and holds forth on matters related to preserving our oceans and shorelines at http://www.pressherald.com/blogs/undercurrents. Badger continues to post on archeology as well as other semi coherent mumblings at http://detritusofempire.blogspot.com/. And Snowglobe remains a shadowy figure, always behind the camera, seldom in front. You can see his photographic work at https://foap.com/market/tags/Pandahat (please use photos from private sources with permission and full credit!).
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Justin-T
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This is sad news indeed, but we definitely seemed to have run out of steam this season. :'(

Thanks to Harry, Tim and Pete for all the time and effort you've put into the site since 2006, it was a great resource and meeting place. Hope to see you all and the other WeDiggers again in another online space (or better still, in a trench just outside Haltwhistle).
Edited by Justin-T, Oct 17 2013, 06:50 PM.
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kaycham
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Just want to say how much I appreciated the WeDigers site - so much valuable information to be gleaned from the posts. Kindest regards to the Admin and to all the readers and posters. Many thanks,
Kathryn.
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snowglobe
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Harry summed it up perfectly, thanks to him for the time and great effort put in over the years, I'm glad I got involved and thanks to all Wediggers for contributing or just visiting the website. Vindolanda has increased my love of archaeology and vastly increased my circle of friends.

I will post up a roll call for 2014, the website will close to new posts but not before signing up day for the new season. If you get your dates in by the 14th November they can be viewed after this time for the foreseeable future. If I'm lucky I'll see you in the trenches next year.

From the Langdale valley
Signing off
Pete
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Fiona D
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Great job done by all - especially for those of us who don't do social media! But - i think you're right - the Vindolanda blog and on-line chatting can do the job in a more up to date way. See you all next year hopefully.
Fiona
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mooseandhobbes
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Hi Harry, Pete and Tim,

many thanks for hosting WeDig, but everything runs its course. I know that not everyone does FB/Twit/et al, but at least those who don't now have the Vindolanda blog to help them keep up to date. Those of us who do may meet again on the other side.
TTFN
MooseandHobbes
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Badger
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Someday, far off and far away though that day may be, I shall "go on" Facebook. Probably not until it is entirely antiquated and you young kids have wifi electrodes screwed directly into your skulls.

Until then, Moosey, your moniker "I don't do blogs" has been all too true of late. You'd best be having some adventures of note to excuse this.

Badger
ps: Snowglobe, loved the "selfie"
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Justin-T
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SacoHarry
Oct 17 2013, 12:04 PM
As for staying in touch, we are exploring a FaceBook group or similar idea for diggers -- will send out an email once things are shored up.
It occurs to me that perhaps there might be a place for consultation of the WeDig community about what comes next? There's a month in which that might be discussed here before the doors creak shut and the lock is turned...
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SacoHarry
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Justin-T
Oct 20 2013, 06:54 AM
It occurs to me that perhaps there might be a place for consultation of the WeDig community about what comes next? There's a month in which that might be discussed here before the doors creak shut and the lock is turned...
Was thinking the same thing! WeDig lived for years because it has been a community, whatever comes next will be strongest if the WeDig community is involved in thinking it through.
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Brinno
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Thanks Harry, Tim and Pete for your good work! Many a time I looked on WeDig to see if there was news. It helped me through the long days between the excavations. I felt that the coverage of the goings on, improved each year, with photo's, maps, backgrounds. And, some of the feeling of connectness I have experienced with other excavators at Vindolanda is also present on WeDig. Not artificial, but spontaneous and unconstrained. I do hope that while WeDig turns into a dead language, some of that charm lives on. As for the question how modern a medium should be, the irony is that the most "primitive" ones, like clay and wooden writing tablets last a lot longer then the ones that we use today.
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Justin-T
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We haven't had much response/discussion yet, or suggestions for the future of WeDig, so let me try and stir things up a bit... B)

My initial reaction to closing WeDig and moving us somewhere else is: will that change the level of participation? What aspects of WeDig would be better served by transferring it to Facebook or Twitter or some other social medium? Is there a new feature that could be added to increase posting/participation here or in a replacement "forum"?

Its clear that a major reason for things becoming quieter here this year is the arrival of the official blog and the continued excellent daily tweets from Justin, so we can now follow progress in the trench without the need for posts by volunteers, and in a much more comprehensive and consistent way. The video blogs in particular are incredibly valuable. The presence of the blog & tweets means we also get the experts opinion/interpretation of what's being revealed throughout the season.

However, I'm still interested in reading about/seeing volunteers daily battles in the trench (even if its on an independent blog like I did this past July), so if there's a better method of doing that than using this forum I'm all for it. Part of the reason I did my own blog was simply the ease of including photos, but it also allowed me to control the overall appearance. Maybe there are other benefits too.

Please chime in with your thoughts/ideas...
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Badger
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Justin

I am not on Facebook or any other sort of "social media". So my opinions on this point are not particularly well informed. I prefer "old school" blogs, and very much enjoyed your postings from the trenches. I know you wrestled with technical issues to do them. (note, I have found the Twice Brewed Inn's back drinks lounge a very convenient spot for writing...)

I don't have the answers here but I do have the questions.

1. should a Facebook/social media niche be open to all or only to current and former excavators?
2. should posters be identified?
3. should such an option be independent of the Official Vindo Blog or a subsidiary part of same?
4. should it be moderated?

There are some issues here that are not obvious to the casually interested. The Trust is very motivated to have first word on significant finds, and even gets squeamish about an excess of speculation. Archeologists are funny that way. Of course the mantra of the internet is blabbing about almost anything 24:7. I think there is also a little bit of British/American difference going on as well. That famed U.K. sense of reserve maybe.

Eventually one of two options will emerge. Either the Trust will decide that they will "host" a Facebook page with some sort of qualifications for being on it. Or something informal will pop up, with no official connections and no use of the Vindolanda name in any fashion. Snowglobe and I had fun with some possible monikers..."Pints and Trowels" being my favorite.

So often with complex matters I simply say "That's a glass of beer question." This is one of those.

Expect a formal or informal answer to it sometime in November.

Badger

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Lynn Bridgett
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I will miss this site when it shuts down too. I'm a volunteer at Vindolanda. I'm up there almost every week during the summer months, but still like keeping in touch with the thoughts of the diggers.
Personally I would prefer a Facebook page. The EH sites seem to be very busy these days, both Chesters and Housesteads post something almost everyday(Corbridge less so). It would be good to have a more visible/main stream presence on the internet that could appeal to a wider audience.

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mooseandhobbes
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Hi Peeps,

My tuppence...

I do like the Twitter feed and official Vindo-blog, but they don't really allow for volunteer interaction. I understand the Trust's keen-ness to keep control over what info runs free into the outside world (and I understand that there are very good reasons for this reticence) but people do like to chat. I know that WeDig isn't seeing so much traffic now, but perhaps that’s more a reflection of the medium than anything else. It has outlasted a number of internet revolutions, so it hasn't done too bad, but to everything, turn, turn, turn...

I do use FB and it would obviously be very easy to just set up an informal group in there. If that were to go ahead, it could be a limited group, requiring approval to join, but the limits would depend on how much involvement any admins want. More limits mean more intervention is required by admins. It could be fairly light touch though, and just post a sticky with guidelines for posting.

On the flip side, not everyone uses, or wants to use FB, or any other social media. I can't solve that one, unless we all write letters to one another :P

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