NANFA-- professional vs hobbyist

Nick Zarlinga (
Tue, 13 Jan 2004 08:04:51 -0500

Folks, thanks for a lively discussion, but a couple of simple points here
first. I am behind on this thread and I want to read all the emails,
especially the ones addressed to me to continue this discussion. So, please
allow me to catch up.

As far as the professional vs hobbyist thing.... the couple of emails that I
have read so far have taken my comments way out of context and addes some
liberties of their own to what I am saying. In no way am I saying that
hobbyists are not valuable and that they are all "consumer", as has been
described. Give me some credit and please read my past comments on this
again. I think you will see my true intentions. It is simply a numbers
game. I in no way am saying that *all* hobbyists are not reliable, or
educated, or passionate, or conservative, etc., etc. And in no way am I
saying that *all* professionals are reliable, educated, passionate, or
conservative, etc. etc. But, when you look at the two groups as a whole,
and we have the system that we have in place, professionals have the
resources and colleagues to handle and comprehend the scientific end of the
situation because that is their job, this what they got into the business to
do, and most have devoted several years of their lives to formally educate
themselves in this field. There are more avenues of learning available to
them. Exceptional hobbyists usually have fight and claw their way to get
these avenues availble to them. This is what makes them exceptional. And
again, I feel that many of the hobbyists on this list are *very*
exceptional. "Hobbyist" is not a bad word and I mean no decension when I am
using it in this context. Many have put more effort into learning their
passion than I have, and I respect that. I have learned alot from this list
over the years.

Now, on to reading emails ......

Nick Zarlinga
Aquarium Biologist
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
216.661.6500 ext 4485
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