Origami community in decline?

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Origami community in decline?

Postby Ponadr » August 8th, 2017, 5:32 am

Is it just me or has the origami community become less active and populated than it used to be a few years ago? It seems to me that there are less active members and less posts, especially when you look at the monthly origami challenges. There is also an overall decline in participation at my local origami group.

I'm guessing the problem here is that there is less interest from the community due to not enough new, exciting publishing origamists and a general decline from the older professional origamists? What do you guys think?
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » August 8th, 2017, 6:40 am

I haven't been around for that long, so I can't really say... However, you're right that the monthly design challenges have been slowing down. I think I know the reason why: all the exciting and fun topics like insects and dragons have been taken, so people are forced to choose challenge topics like "other art forms."

I think this problem can be resolved by going back to the old challenges (like the look alike one) and doing them again for the next few months.
Gallery of my own designs with some CPs: http://snkhan.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14078

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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby HankSimon » August 8th, 2017, 7:41 am

IMHO it may be due to the type of posts. Go back about 10 -15 years and look up the posts of Robert Lang, Joseph Wu, David Lister, Eric Joisel, Nick Robinson, Quentin Trollip, Giang Dinh, et al. and compare those topics to the most recent posts. The posts and topics of discussion were very different.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby steingar » August 8th, 2017, 8:24 pm

Yes. The reason is quite simple. In one word.
































































Facebook.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby bethnor » August 10th, 2017, 4:52 am

steingar: do you mean the forum is in decline because of facebook, or the origami community as a whole is in decline because of facebook?
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby Splunge » August 10th, 2017, 9:16 am

I don't think it's an Origami specific issue. I've observed the same development at forums discussing completely different topics.

I guess, the way of communication has changed in general to more responding medias like facebook, as steingar suggests.
You'll probably get more and faster feedback (praise) if you post your models on flickr than in this forum...

20 years ago an internet forum was a new and interesting way to exchange your opinions with people around the world. The communication culture was similar to a real world communication.
Over the years, online communication became standard and much faster. Replies became shorter, spelling was neglected etc.

I also agree with HankSimon. Additional reasons why the experts from the early days of the forums (not only this one and not only Origami-related) left them may be, that over the years more and more "normal" people joined in, changing the nature of the forum, discussing less interesting topics (for the experts) or even (through the anonymity of the internet) not showing the expected respect.

And finally: we're all becoming older, priorities and character are changing. A 40 years old usually has a different communication behavior or simply less time compared to a 20 years old. And, as mentioned before, the younger people are probably more attracted by facebook and Co. than an internet forum.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby origami_8 » August 10th, 2017, 2:53 pm

Yet I hear that there is a decline in young people on Facebook as well. The typical Facebook user is about 30 to 50 years old, the younger people rather tend to use alternative ways of communication. There seems to be a lot going on on Whatsapp, Instagram and Pinterest but I only heard rumors about it and don't use these channels myself.
What I can definitely say is that Mailing Lists, Forums and Flickr have a lot less posts than just a few years ago.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby Ponadr » August 10th, 2017, 6:34 pm

Does anyone else feel like the activity of older professional origamists has also slowed down? A few of them such as Brian Chan and Hojyo Takashi have basicly stopped designing.

On the other hand, I've noticed that there are quite a few young designers and folders on flickr, but they don't usually publish their work. I'm not sure whether this is an improvement though, since Anna mentioned that posts have decreased even on flickr.

I also agree that facebook and other social media sites might be having an effect, since more ways of communication means that origami activity will be more spread out and less concentrated in areas such as the forum.

What do you guys think will be the future of the origami community, considering that there seems to be a decline currently? Is it just a temporary phase or cycle? How will the community change and what will interest people to be more active in origami?
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » August 10th, 2017, 10:51 pm

Another reason the origami community is declining is that ever since the rise of the mira-ori tesselation and other forms of origami in modern engineering, origami has been losing popularity as an art and becoming more of a technique for creating new technology or demonstrating math. Not that I think origami's role in technology is bad, I just think that folding a solar panel should not be called origami, because origami means folding paper. Anyways, my point is that origami the art and origami the math are getting jumbled up into a big slushy mix of folding in general, and unless the two are distinctly defined math is going to overpower traditional origami.

I think if we want to get more people to do origami, the origami community needs to stop making youtube videos of simple models and instead publish more origami books with simple models. The models also have to be simple enough that a child could do it easily but still able to show kids that interesting things can be made from one square without cutting taping or drawing. I think it's important for it to be books instead of videos, because books teach people how to read diagrams, they get a physical copy to read anytime, and most importantly: little kids (the optimal time for learning origami) are more likely to get a book from their parents than access to youtube.

To prove my point, I will point out that the "origin stories" of almost every origamist, including me, started with curiously folding through an origami book(s). Videos are good for moderately advanced models or helping people get unstuck, but they aren't good for hooking beginners.
Gallery of my own designs with some CPs: http://snkhan.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14078

Another gallery of my well photographed models:
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14504&p=148385#p148385
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby origami_8 » August 11th, 2017, 9:02 am

There are a gazillion Beginner Origami books out there. Sincerely, we do not need yet another one. But young people nowadays don't want to figure it out by themselves. They want stuff presented to them on a golden plate. Those of us who learned with diagrams have a hard time understanding, why anyone would rather watch an instructional video than fold from diagrams. But those kids never bothered to learn the signs. They might be able to fold a super complex model from video, but they would get stuck on the first few steps of the diagrams.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby Sunburst » August 11th, 2017, 2:57 pm

I also don't think that beginner books is a good method to bring in more newcomers. I think that videos diagrams work well. Some people won't wan't to try something new by themselves. Rather, if they see someone doing it, they'll notice that it's not as difficult as it seems.

Back on topic, I think the apparition of different medias to post pictures is diluting the communities on each. Some folders post pictures on each, some restrict themselves to one. Take flickr and instagram for example. I only post on flickr, so I don't see folders who post only on instagram.

Something useful would be some sort of universal database for every folder to post pictures/have discussions so that everyone would be on one place only.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby greencube07 » August 16th, 2017, 11:39 pm

Sunburst wrote: I think that videos diagrams work well. Some people won't wan't to try something new by themselves. Rather, if they see someone doing it, they'll notice that it's not as difficult as it seems.


Yeah, but that doesn't give uploaders to have the right to violate the copyright law. MarianoZavalaOrigami have been uploading a lot of video tutorials and have thought himself(herself) that he(she) does the great job, but that's all fake. I checked on some of the original designers and they never gave him(her) permission upon uploading the copyrighted diagrams. And when I talked to him about that, he deleted my messages and blocked me.
As you can see from this, video tutorials are not something that can be talked easily-rather it's probably one of those problem caustic ones. I would rather choose books that wouldn't be 'so easy' for like him(her) to work on and violate such laws.
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » August 17th, 2017, 1:17 am

People will receive more satisfaction from struggling through a book and producing a finished product without help rather than, as you said, "presented it to them on a golden plate." From the satisfaction from folding the first model, it will lead the reader to fold the rest of the models in the book, which by then they are likely to continue origami for a long time.

And yes, videos are good for teaching people how to do one or two models, but the main problem I see is that beginners might not know what models are too easy and unsatisfactory, too difficult and causes frustration, or at the right difficulty. This means that if a viewer folded one model, they might look for another, but give up if they find it's too difficult and stop doing origami all together. On the other hand, origami books are either all at the same level or goes in increasing difficulty.
I agree with all of you, that videos are helpful, especially for the longer/harder models that take too much work to diagram, or for people who only want to publish a few designs without having to write a book. But I still think that books are better at getting origamists to stick to the art for a long time.

Also, it appears that Mariano Zavala has added the names of the models' artists to his/her videos.


To answer the original question again, the origami community is going to start declining even more, now that school is starting...
Gallery of my own designs with some CPs: http://snkhan.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14078

Another gallery of my well photographed models:
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14504&p=148385#p148385
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby greencube07 » August 17th, 2017, 4:31 am

NeverCeaseToCrease wrote:
Also, it appears that Mariano Zavala has added the names of the models' artists to his/her videos.

No, you're missing the point. There's simply no right for him to upload copyrighted model tutorials without the permission of the original author. That goes same even if he or she writes the name of thd designer. In example, you can't just upload how to fold ancient dragon designed by Kamiya satoshi without his permission even though the uploader puts the name of the designer on the video. He just blocks every single people on youtube or Flickr that tells him not to do that. :(
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Re: Origami community in decline?

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » August 17th, 2017, 6:28 am

Well, whatever, that's his/her choice to not listen, there's nothing else you can do.
This discussion is about origami tutorials in general, and most youtubers will get permission before creating the video.
Although yes, you're right that the risk of copyright issues is one reason why origami books are just as if not more important than origami videos.
Gallery of my own designs with some CPs: http://snkhan.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14078

Another gallery of my well photographed models:
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=14504&p=148385#p148385
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