From the Editor:
was designed to give voice to those who use Goleta Pier on a regular basis
and all reporting is from their point of view
concerning a number of ongoing issues that they believe negatively
impact the public's enjoyment of this facility.
Since we are increasingly a visually oriented society the Log
relies heavily on pictures to document those concerns. Attempts are
made to respect and protect individual privacy. There is no intention to
demean any individual or groups so pictured. The focus of any story is
on the issue and not the actors.
As an editor my contribution is to attempt to frame the resulting
discussion by providing additional context and links to relevant resources
in the hope that meaningful solutions may emerge.
The need for such an outlet arose during the almost daily conversations
I have had with individual members of the Goleta Pier community since I
entered active retirement in July 2000.
The participants include anglers, park staff, daily strollers,
UCSB researchers, students (and their parents), tourists, teachers, lifeguards,
police and fire officials, concessionaires, wildlife rescue, animal control,
Department of Fish and Game, survey takers and others.
Typically however most of those conversations would end on a
pessimistic note of 'I guess there just is nothing we can do about
[insert issue here] ... nobody is listening anyway".
At the same time I was participating in Ken Jones' online angling
website and messageboard (pierfishing.com)
where I had been a member since its inception in 1997. That site currently
has over 6000 registered pier and shore anglers with up to 100 or more
postings per day.
The unique thing about his site is that it is much more than
just a 'fish pictures and bragging rights' venue ... many of the discussions
involved the public's negative perception of anglers and the need to improve
the sport's image.
Suggestions for improvement usually fell into one of two categories:
more enforcement or more education. Both approaches though were narrowly
focused on motivating some distant official or agency to act and did little
to overcome the belief that we were powerless without their cooperation.
Realizing that real change would have to come from the dominant
group on most piers - the angling community itself - a statewide non-profit
educational organization was created to help empower those individuals
to address their local issues. Goleta Pier was chosen as the location for
the first attempt at such organizing.
In 2006, for
various reasons, I gave up sport fishing and found myself with time
on my hands. No longer fixated on the next big fish I began to notice just
how neglected the pier had become in recent years and decided to enroll
as a volunteer in order to to help turn things around.
Currently I spend 12-15 hours per week actively cleaning the
pier and another 20 or so in research and writing for the Log.
Questions or comments? ... email Pierhead