History of the Diehards forums and diehards.org

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Diehards.org history

Postby Alex Frakt » Tue Oct 16, 2007 2:17 pm

The idea for what would become diehards.org was planted in this thread started on 6/13/01 http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSoc ... nvId=42509
mellindauer - Has anyone noticed that Conversations from earlier today are already scrolling off the bottom of the page? And would you believe that it's only a little after 4 PM EST.

Carl and I discussed this at Diehards II, and we're hoping that M* will be able to offer us some method to deal with the large number of posts that this forum generates. Stay tuned!


Mingstar - I've often wanted to search just the Diehards forum for a keyword. It was troublesome to have to weed out the other forums by eye.

I'd also like to see more powerful searching capabilities. I think Google got it right.


annbrennan - I'm not a programmer, but just being away for a few days is a "killer" trying to sort through the posts I've missed. As they don't necessarily follow in date order I have to go back further than expected to "catch up".

It would be nice to pick up where I left off.


lowwall - I am a programmer and most of what you are asking for is trivial.

In fact, I could quite easily do it myself (provide decent search capabilities and the ability to view posts in last response order) on one of my own sites with the links coming back to here.

But I doubt M* would let me.

Maybe I'll do it anyway and just wait for the cease and desist letter. If nothing else it might show them how useful such features can be.

It's funny, Larry (Mingstar) and I posted completely independently. We didn't get together on diehards.org until after I partially followed through on my "threat" to M* on 6/22 by announcing the creation of a page that showed the 50 most recently updated conversations. It was very primitive and buggy at first, but 3 days later...

Larry contacted me and told me he had been indexing all the posts with the idea that he would eventually build a search engine around them and offered to work with me on a site to include my listings and his search engine. He did the coding and I did the front end, and we had a working prototype up within a week. We brought in beta testers (Taylor, Mel, Bylo, Bonesly, Claudia and Bob Stowe) on 7/11 and...

diehards.org launched on 7/27/01.

Edit: Here's a post announcing the move of this forum by its creator Phoenix to diehards.org http://www.diehards.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=201
Last edited by Alex Frakt on Tue Oct 16, 2007 3:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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History of the Vanguard Diehards

Postby Mel Lindauer » Tue Oct 16, 2007 2:36 pm

NAVigator wrote:
Orion wrote:I believe you joined this forum on its second day so I don't think you've missed much!

I believe tc101 was referring to the Diehards as a group which existed for years before this forum was started. I believe the name Vanguard Diehards arose due to the tenacity with which Taylor and Mel pursued M* to create the forum. I hope that they chime in here with the details.

I hope that Alex or Larry can add the history about when and why diehards.org came about.


Actually, it was the tenacity of Taylor, Lynn C (who still posts here and has attended Diehards national events) and a few others who finally convinced M* Jenny to establish the Vanguard Diehards forum in 1998. I actually discovered the forum shortly after it was established and started participating then.

In the early days, both Taylor and I found ourselves answering the same questions repeatedly with the same basic information, so he and I worked together to co-author "Your First Step" http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSoc ... hread.aspx

With this post, we had a reference that we (and others) could link to that gave newbies the information needed to get started. That post allowed Taylor and I to spend more time working with other poster's questions.

Taylor made a post on Thanksgiving Day, 1999 titled "A Time to Give Thanks" http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSoc ... hread.aspx

Mr. Bogle saw Taylor's post and he responded to Taylor with this message http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSoc ... 17806.aspx

The last sentence in that letter from Jack Bogle asked if there was any interest in getting together with him for a day at a convenient location. Well, that's like getting an invite to the White House or an audience with the Pope, so Taylor and I tried to figure out how we could pull that meeting off!

The following Feb. (2000), Taylor informed me that Mr. Bogle and Don Phillips (the Managing Director of M*) were both scheduled to be Keynote Speakers at the Miami Herald's Making Money Seminar in March, and asked me if I'd like to attend the show with him. While making arrangements to attend the show together, we also discussed inviting other Diehards to join us. We then decided to go one step further and agreed to invite any forum members who would like to come to Miami for the Show to be our guests for lunch. Taylor and I thought we might be acting a bit crazy, since we didn't know how many Diehards might take us up on our offer of a free meal, and we had no idea how much it might cost us, but we still decided to proceed anyway!

We then made a joint post on the forum, inviting other forum members to join us for what turned out to be Diehards I and the start of our annual get-togethers with Jack Bogle. http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSoc ... 20648.aspx

You can read more about our previous Diehard reunions with Jack Bogle following the links on the Bogleheads Forum Libary here: http://www.diehards.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=702
It's very nostalgic reading for those of us who were there, and very informative for those who weren't.


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Postby Cyberdaisy » Tue Oct 16, 2007 6:05 pm

Hi Everybody! There are two other places to view "Diehards History"

1. There is a Sticky dated March 12, 2007 in the Reference Library entitled "Diehards History" with much of the same info as below

2. In Off-Topic, p 13 April 24, 2007 simba gathered together reunion highlights/reports/pictures/links, etc.

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Postby Cyberdaisy » Tue Oct 16, 2007 6:07 pm

Oops, looks like there's some overlap with Mel's post...sorry, didn't see that before posting...

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Postby Mel Lindauer » Tue Oct 16, 2007 6:24 pm

Cyberdaisy wrote:Oops, looks like there's some overlap with Mel's post...sorry, didn't see that before posting...


Hi Claudia:

Nice to see your name on a post! Hope things are going well for you. Are you planning on joining us in San Diego for Diehards VII next year?

Best regards,

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Postby woof755 » Tue Oct 16, 2007 7:25 pm

Alex Frakt wrote:For the M* forum history, take a look at
http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSoc ... hread.aspx
written on the occasion of the 100,000th post. Here are some of Taylor's remarks.

"Investment Basics" was Morningstar's first forum started in June, 1997. Other "topic" forums were soon added. One of the major subjects in all these early forums was Vanguard and its index funds. Several Vanguard shareholders led by Luahiwa, Fred Holtz, Floyd Taylor, rferren, popeck, and others, began pestering Jennie Barrie, Community Coordinator, for a separate Vanguard Forum.

Morningstar resisted. They doubted that there would be enough response for a single company forum. But their biggest objection was that it would be unfair to have a forum for just one company. However, after much controversy Morningstar finally relented to our pleas. A contest was held for the best name. "Bogleheads" was favored. But Jennie decided "Vanguard Diehards" was more suitable because Diehards are "persons who vigorously promote a hopeless position."

My first Diehard post was in Conversation # 1 in March 1998. None of us ever dreamed that 43 months later we would be Morningstar's most popular forum.

Hey! Who you callin' hopeless?!!!!! :wink:
"By singing in harmony from the same page of the same investing hymnal, the Diehards drown out market noise." | | --Jason Zweig, quoted in The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing
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