I have had a few sleepless nights asking myself "What is RDP?" Is it strictly a community? Is it a media outlet or a news organization? I finally asked the membership the other day in a thread "What is RDP to you?" and was happy to hear the responses. It is to the membership, exactly what it is to me.

The fact is RDP is a community, it is a media outlet, and yes it is a place where breaking news of all types (boating and ??) happens. As the site owner this has put me in somewhat of a conundrum with regard to trying to "classify" the site, and focus on attaining certain goals.

If we are a news organization then shouldn't I try to break the latest news first? (We have Matt and Jason doing it already via Speed on the Water)
If we are a media outlet, should I just focus on forms of entertainment and information pertaining to boats? (I'd say we do as good a job of that as anybody already.)
If we are strictly a community should I even bother trying to cover events anymore? (We enjoy it so we will continue to do so, if even at a loss at times)

The picture became all to clear to me recently, while I was sitting a top a mountain with my good friend Paul talking about some of the more "recent" politics of owning a website. Why do I keep trying to hammer this oblong shaped piece into a square hole, a round hole etc.. It doesn't fit, it's never gonna fit, and the only way to make it fit is to trim something off the sides. Except I'm not interested in giving up some of the sides?

I like RDP the way it is, and there is a correlation between this website and our personal lives. I'm not interested in trimming part of my life off in order to "fit" into the prototypical hole that everyone else (other websites) is trying to fit in. I don't expect my membership is either. I don't want an "On topic" forum that if it doesn't fit perfectly it gets deleted. That's most other forums on the web, and this isn't every other forum, this is RDP.

The answer is simple, what binds us all together is boating, but we are not just boaters. We are offroaders, we are hot rodders, we are custom enthusiasts, we are home builders, and machinists, and farmers, union guys and non, and pretty much everything you can think of under the sun. So while our main bond is boating, is that the only thing any of us are going to talk about when we meet up? The answer is simply "no."

So I have decided to take this front page, and focus our experts on the thing that binds us together, but as well leave room in my column and even encourage our "experts" for other topics of discussion, and "other customs" and builds as they come up. As an example, Prime Marine builds the baddest v-drives out there PERIOD. They are our resident V-Drive experts.. But lately they have also been building a few hot rods in the shop. I told them I'd like to see them as well!

There's a second parallel string of thought going on here. Since I have now officially abandoned the idea of fitting RDP into the square mundane hole of classification.. I am also going to stop trying to put myself in that square hole.

I'm going back to what built this place.. I'm a boater, I'm an offroader, I'm a machinist.. and I know all the right guys to see, and show, some very cool custom pieces, and I have the talent to build some pretty cool pieces. I'm not a baller, I don't have a skater, nor do I have a twin turbo boat (yet). But all my junk (I don't care what you have it's all junk when ya die - Brian Smith 2011) is respectable and will turn a head in a crowd and I'm damn proud of it.

I am not as proud of any of my possessions though as I am of this place.. This community, from where we started, to where we have come, and all the accomplishments throughout, and all the good things and hell even some of the bad that we have experienced together. It's been an amazing ride, and with recent events in the online world.. <click, click, click> We are being drug to an even higher plateau on this roller coaster, and it's gonna be a wild ride.

So where do we go into the future? The same way we have been going, nowhere but up, and to anyone that wants to come along for the ride? You're more then welcome. If it's not your cup of tea? That's fine too, we still aren't going to let you off at the next stop. You'll come back just to see what happens next.